Ukraine's Plan B for Donbas revealed: media

16:30, 14 March 2016
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Among the three draft plans of Ukraine's policy toward Donbas lying on the table of the Ukrainian president, Plan B provides for stripping the pro-Russian militants of citizenship and holding a referendum on the fate of certain areas of Donetsk and Luhansk regions, Liga.Novosti reported Monday.


The publication suggests that Plan A is to pursue implementation of the Minsk agreements in exchange for the extension of sanctions against Russia, the aggressor state.

Plan B is said to be implemented in case the EU eases or lifts anti-Russian sanctions.

The third option is reported to have been voiced before Minsk deal was signed: the war for the occupied areas of Donbas.

According to the sources of the edition, the pressure of the European business makes Paris and Berlin act more decisively on public, urging Russia and Ukraine to reach progress. In fact, they demand more from Moscow, but they bind the weakening or extension of sanctions with Moscow's significant concessions to Kyiv.

However, if Russia does not implement basic provisions of the agreements, there will be no elections, no amnesty for the militants, and no special status for Donbas. If this condition does not satisfy the allies in the European Union (while Washington officially declared that the elections in Donbas should not be held before Russian troops are withdrawn and control over captured border is returned to Ukraine), Ukraine is ready to put up with the EU's weak position, retaining the support of Washington.

"We won't agree to these elections without progress from Russia. It does not make sense. We'll see progress if Moscow begins to implement the basic provisions of the agreements. But now, we don't have this. Shooting is continuing, and people are dying. And how can we discuss the elections while the militants continue to keep hostages in cellars?" a source in the presidential administration has told the publication.

One of the key negotiators from Ukraine directly and literally answered the question about the future of the Minsk agreements, "Either it will be how we want it, or they will have no [future] whatsoever." According to a senior official, Plan B is a whole chain of decisions that are expected to be negatively perceived in the West, but they will be certainly positively met by most Ukrainians. The sequence of these steps may vary depending on the situation.

Read alsoHard talks in Paris: statements of Normandy Quartet FMsBut in case the EU decides to ease or lift the sanctions against Russia, the situation developments might be as follows: Ukraine officially continues to take part in the Minsk talks, but they will last for years; the demarcation line in Donbas de facto becomes a real border; the law is adopted on terrorist organizations, as well as the law on deprivation of rights for crimes against national security fundamentals (the terrorists will be deprived of citizenship); a Ukrainian referendum is held on the fate of certain areas of Donetsk and Luhansk regions, occupied by the Russian Federation.

Two high-ranking sources in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Presidential Administration confirmed to LІ the information that the idea of a law on depriving terrorists of citizenship (like in France), a version of which was set out by law at the end of 2014, became relevant again and was being worked out by experts.

Read alsoKlimkin: Paris talks of Normandy Four FMs "not decisive but just another step""We will face a barrage of criticism from the EU. That is why we say it is a backup plan, an alternative one. But we are ready for it. So if someone says that there is no alternative – we have this. It has always been there. But everything has its time," the sources said.

Read alsoUkraine Envoy slams Germany for being "too friendly" to RussiaThe goal of Plan B is to prevent any of Russia's attempts to influence the internal processes in Ukraine through reintegration of Donetsk and Luhansk. At the same time, Ukraine is bringing the issue of the occupied areas of Donbas out of the brackets and postponing the return of the occupied territories until a more appropriate time.

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