Volker assesses new Donbas peace plan
United States Special Representative for Ukraine Negotiations Kurt Volker has said a new plan to resolve the situation in Donbas proposed by Special Representative of the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office in Ukraine and in the Trilateral Contact Group, Ambassador Martin Sajdik does not suggest abandoning the Minsk agreements.
"We have these agreements and they are important, because they have established a ceasefire, they have established key rules, such as the withdrawal of heavy weapons, the withdrawal of foreign forces, illegal armed groups, the restoration of the international border between Ukraine and Russia. These are very important things and we would not want to lose without the Minsk agreements," Volker said in an interview to Pryamiy TV Channel.
He says Russia must first stop the war in the east of Ukraine and allow the deployment of a UN peacekeeping mission to Donbas.
According to Volker, Sajdik demonstrates that there are certain ideas from which it is possible to move on. But the prerequisite for this can only be Russia's decision to end the war, establish peace and finally allow the UN peacekeeping mission to create a peaceful and secure environment. Only when these things are implemented, all other things will make sense, Volker emphasized.
Volker says the Minsk agreements are good on paper, but they are not put in place.
He said Russia had never adhered to a full ceasefire. There was no complete withdrawal of heavy weapons. Russian troops are still in the east of Ukraine, Russia continues to finance illegal forces and provide them with weapons, as well as supports the existence of two so-called "republics."
As UNIAN reported earlier, Special Representative of the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office in Ukraine and in the Trilateral Contact Group, Ambassador Martin Sajdik, unveiled a new plan to resolve the situation in Donbas, involving joint participation of the OSCE and the United Nations.