Answering a question at today’s briefing on whether the French foreign ministry has any response to the statement by Zakharchenko, the ministry’s speaker said:" We call on Russia to condemn the statement that is a violation of the Minsk agreements, betraying the spirit of the negotiations in the Normandy format. Russia should intensify its efforts to bring this conflict to an end."
Read alsoSome 70% of Ukrainians ready for compromise for peace to reign in Donbas – pollThe speaker added that France “remains committed to the full restoration of Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity within its internationally recognized borders. The Minsk agreements signed by Russia and Ukraine, supported by the Normandy Four, as well as by the United Nations Security Council, are the only basis agreed upon by all parties, to achieve a peaceful and sustainable settlement of the crisis between the two countries."
Earlier today, the German government has also condemned the creation of the “Malorossiya” project.
“Zakharchenko has no legitimate right to speak for this part of Ukraine.We expect that Russia will immediately condemn this step, will not respect and recognize it," the statement by the German government’s press secretary read.
Read alsoPoroshenko: Novorossiya project dead, Ukraine to retake Donbas, CrimeaBerlin considers negotiations the only way to resolve the conflict in Ukraine, the press secretary said. It is, in particular, the implementation of the Minsk agreements by Russia, Ukraine, and Moscow-supported separatists in Donbas.
As UNIAN reported earlier on Tuesday, the so-called leader of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic ("DPR"), Alexander Zakharchenko, has announced the creation of a new separatist entity, "the state of Malorossiya," suggesting the introduction of a state of emergency in Ukraine for three years, according to Russia's news agency Interfax.
Ukraine’s NSDC Secretary Oleksandr Turchynov believes that the statement by the terrorist leader testifies to the intention of Russian President Vladimir Putin to resume the advance of military aggression deeper into Ukraine, while the representative of Ukraine in the security subgroup on of the Tripartite Contact Group, Yevhen Marchuk, noted that Zakharchenko's statement was blocking the Minsk negotiation process on the Donbas settlement.