Razumkov / Photo from UNIAN

Ukrainian Parliament Speaker Dmytro Razumkov says he sees no grounds for relocating the Trilateral Contact Group (TCG) peace talks platform from Minsk, Belarus.

He said on TV that it was his personal position, according to an UNIAN correspondent.

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Answering a question whether it could be appropriate to relocate the negotiating platform from Minsk to another city over the situation in Belarus, he said:

"My personal position is that it is inappropriate... There were such speculations earlier, when there was no COVID-19 [pandemic] – Astana [the former name of Nur-Sultan, the current name of Kazakhstan's capital], some other cities were mentioned."

"I think that changing the location will have no impact on the quality of work," he added.

Razumkov says that today he sees no reason for any relocation at all, as all negotiation sessions are held online.

"Today there is no logic in the change of the place, name. Because, in fact, the meeting point is not in Belarus or Ukraine, or in any other European country," he said.

Previous developments

  • On August 26, Chairman of Ukraine's delegation to the Minsk Trilateral Contact Group Leonid Kravchuk said that it was not time to discuss the relocation of the talks from Minsk. Asked about the possible relocation of the negotiation platform from Minsk to another country over protests in Belarus, Kravchuk said: "The issue is under discussion. There are different ideas. But we are still working in video mode, and this issue is not important to us. When we start working offline and see what is happening or what has happened in Belarus, then we could revisit the question of relocation or not relocation. Now this question is not relevant."
  • On September 15, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said that the possible relocation of the TCG talks from Minsk was not relevant. "Regarding changing the venue of Trilateral Contact Group meetings from Minsk [Belarus] to Austria – it seems to me that today, because of COVID-19, it does not matter where people gather if there is a result. Today we are working online, we have video meetings," he said during a visit to Austria. According to Zelensky, Austria is very supportive of Ukraine, including on sanctions against the Russian Federation, and Ukraine is very grateful for that, but the issue of transferring the TCG negotiations from Minsk "is now very early to be discussed."