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Germany: Progress made on security issues at 'Normandy Four' talks - Lavrov 03:21

Germany: Progress made on security issues at 'Normandy Four' talks - Lavrov

Germany, Berlin
May 11, 2016 at 17:21 GMT +00:00 · Published

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov gave a press statement at Borsig-Villa Reiherwerder in Berlin, Wednesday, following the 'Normandy Four' meeting on the Ukraine crisis.

Discussing the progress made at the talks, Lavrov said: "We have an entire package of agreements concerning the provision of security, the observation of the ceasefire regime; weapons' withdrawal and ways of increasing control over how these weapons are being stored at depots so that it does not disappear from there. We asked the Contact Group in the first place to tackle all those issues."

"Another very important agreement that has been achieved today - we have agreed that the Joint Center on Control and Coordination of issues related to the ceasefire regime and the stabilisation of the situation, created upon an initiative of President Poroshenko, should participate in the process," he added.

Discussing the political aspects of the talks, the Russian diplomat stated: "We have devoted a lot of time to the political aspects of the Minsk agreements. The most important result that we reaffirmed that there should be an interrelated solution for all these issues. It refers to the Donbass local elections, the necessity to adopt a law on the 'special status' of Donbass, including this status in the Ukraine's constitution and of course amnesty," before adding: "To conduct elections and settle the conflict without national reconciliation through the amnesty is impossible."

However, the Russian diplomat noted that "we have not managed to achieve a lot on these particular problems because according to Minsk agreements, these questions have to be solved through the direct dialog between Kiev, Donetsk and Lugansk." "All sites have come to a joint conclusion that all these issues are linked with each other - that is the most important result of the today's meeting," he stressed.

Moreover, Lavrov commented on Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko's initiative to conduct elections in Donbass under the supervision of an international armed mission. "We believe that one can insure security during the elections without any armed mission. The representatives from the OSCE mission will be invited. It is stipulated in the Minsk agreements," he stated.

The group, dubbed the 'Normandy Four,' was created in 2014 to secure a peaceful settlement to the conflict in eastern Ukraine. The key issues for discussion were the further implementation of the Minsk peace agreement and the current situation in south-eastern Ukraine, with special focus on issues such as security and prisoner exchange. Aside from Lavrov, German Foreign Minister Steinmeier, French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault and Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin also attended Wednesday's talks.

Germany: Progress made on security issues at 'Normandy Four' talks - Lavrov 03:21
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Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov gave a press statement at Borsig-Villa Reiherwerder in Berlin, Wednesday, following the 'Normandy Four' meeting on the Ukraine crisis.

Discussing the progress made at the talks, Lavrov said: "We have an entire package of agreements concerning the provision of security, the observation of the ceasefire regime; weapons' withdrawal and ways of increasing control over how these weapons are being stored at depots so that it does not disappear from there. We asked the Contact Group in the first place to tackle all those issues."

"Another very important agreement that has been achieved today - we have agreed that the Joint Center on Control and Coordination of issues related to the ceasefire regime and the stabilisation of the situation, created upon an initiative of President Poroshenko, should participate in the process," he added.

Discussing the political aspects of the talks, the Russian diplomat stated: "We have devoted a lot of time to the political aspects of the Minsk agreements. The most important result that we reaffirmed that there should be an interrelated solution for all these issues. It refers to the Donbass local elections, the necessity to adopt a law on the 'special status' of Donbass, including this status in the Ukraine's constitution and of course amnesty," before adding: "To conduct elections and settle the conflict without national reconciliation through the amnesty is impossible."

However, the Russian diplomat noted that "we have not managed to achieve a lot on these particular problems because according to Minsk agreements, these questions have to be solved through the direct dialog between Kiev, Donetsk and Lugansk." "All sites have come to a joint conclusion that all these issues are linked with each other - that is the most important result of the today's meeting," he stressed.

Moreover, Lavrov commented on Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko's initiative to conduct elections in Donbass under the supervision of an international armed mission. "We believe that one can insure security during the elections without any armed mission. The representatives from the OSCE mission will be invited. It is stipulated in the Minsk agreements," he stated.

The group, dubbed the 'Normandy Four,' was created in 2014 to secure a peaceful settlement to the conflict in eastern Ukraine. The key issues for discussion were the further implementation of the Minsk peace agreement and the current situation in south-eastern Ukraine, with special focus on issues such as security and prisoner exchange. Aside from Lavrov, German Foreign Minister Steinmeier, French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault and Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin also attended Wednesday's talks.

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