Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has held a phone conversation with Angela Merkel, the Federal Chancellor of Germany.
The president briefed the German leader on the security situation in Donbas, as well as the efforts of the Ukrainian party aimed at achieving peace in the region, the Zelensky's Office reported on Thursday, September 10.
For her part, Angela Merkel has assured that Germany will continue to make every effort to achieve progress in the peace process.
"At the same time, she stressed the importance of implementing the Paris agreements reached in the Normandy format [Ukraine, Germany, France, and Russia], especially on observing ceasefire," the report reads.
The leaders of the two countries noted the importance of further coordination of steps toward a peaceful settlement in Donbas, and expressed hope that the upcoming meeting of advisors to the leaders of the Normandy format, set to be held September 11, will bring "clear decisions and results," and that the Normandy Four leaders' summit will be held shortly.
Angela Merkel stressed that "Ukraine can count on the support of Germany and France on the way to resolving the issue of the war in Donbas," the report reads.
Read alsoZelensky on ceasefire violations in Donbas: Russia must adhere to agreementsZelensky and Merkel have noted "proximity of positions" of the two countries regarding the developments in Belarus.
Volodymyr Zelensky recalled that Ukraine "joined the EU statement on the presidential elections in Belarus."
Situation around Sumy in Donbas: background
- So-called "DPR leader" Denis Pushilin threatened to open fire on Ukrainian army positions from 08:00 a.m. local time on September 7.
- As grounds for such move, Pushilin claimed violations by Ukrainian forces of the latest ceasefire agreement sealed on July 22. He demanded that Ukrainian troops undo the trenches that had allegedly been dug after July 22, and warned that they "have every right" to act to eliminate the alleged violations.
- In turn, Commander of the Joint Forces, Lieutenant General Volodymyr Kravchenko said the Ukrainian troops had not violated any agreements.
- On September 6, the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine confirmed there had been no violations of the ceasefire agreements by the Joint Forces.
- On September 9, participants in the TCG meeting agreed on a joint inspection near Shumy with the participation of a representative of the OSCE coordinator.
- The President's Office said the relevant agreement on the inspection had been reached to refute fake news and prevent new provocations.
- However, the "joint inspection" of Ukrainian positions was eventually "suspended."
- The President's Office has explained the move to suspend the inspection. The Ukrainian side is reported to have received a number of conflicting demands that distort the nature of the ceasefire agreements and further humiliate the OSCE as a reliable and objective mediator.
- At 14:15 on September 10, Russian occupation forces opened fire, employing small arms, at Ukrainian positions near the village of Shumy, JFO Command reported. This was aimed fire, targeting the site where representatives of the Joint Ceasefire Coordination Center and OSCE were set to meet.