(QHA) -

German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier called on Russia Monday to respect "the unity of Ukraine" in the wake of elections held by pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine.

"We will judge Russia and President [Vladimir] Putin on their statements that the unity of Ukraine cannot be called into question," Steinmeier said in a Twitter message.

The statement comes after Moscow announced it respected the choice made by people of southeastern Ukraine in the November 2 elections and was prepared to further support efforts aimed at settling the Ukrainian crisis.

"The elections in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions were
well-organized in general and drew a high voter turnout. We respect the choice made by residents of the southeast," the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement following the presidential and parliamentary polls in the Donetsk (DPR) and Luhansk (LPR) People's Republics.