Kremlin says it wants to avoid raising tensions over Ukraine breakaway regions

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Russian President Putin holds annual news conference in Moscow

MOSCOW (Reuters) - The Kremlin reacted coolly on Friday to a Russian parliament initiative to recognise two pro-Russian breakaway regions in eastern Ukraine as independent states, saying it was important to avoid steps that could increase tensions.

Russia's parliament will hold consultations next week on an idea to recognise the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic and the Luhansk People's Republic in Donbass, the chamber's speaker said on Friday.

Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov, speaking before top diplomats from the United States and Russia meet for talks in Geneva, said it was important not to try and score political points in such a fragile situation.

Peskov said the Kremlin was not expecting U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken to hand over a written response to its sweeping demands for security guarantees from the West on Friday.

(Reporting by Dmitry Antonov; Writing by Alexander Marrow)