German Chancellor Angela Merkel asked Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday to intervene with Belarus over the migrant situation on that country’s border with Poland, where groups of migrants made bold attempts this week to cross into European Union territory, the AP reports.

The chancellor’s office said Merkel spoke with Putin by phone and underlined that the exploitation “of migrants against the European Union by the Belarusian regime is inhuman and completely unacceptable.” Merkel asked the Russian president “to exert his influence on the regime in Minsk,” her office said.

Russia is a close ally of the government in Belarus. Germany is a favored destination for migrants who manage to enter the EU.

The readout of the call released by the Kremlin said Putin proposed a discussion of the problems that have come up between EU member nations and Belarus. It also said that Putin and Merkel “agreed to continue the conversation on the issue.”

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