East Ukraine situation improved, but more work to be done, Merkel says (Video)
Germany is still hoping for a peaceful solution to the crisis in Eastern Ukraine, and German Chancellor Angela Merkel said at a briefing in Berlin with Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatseniuk that she was ready to give the Minsk-2 ceasefire agreement more time to be fully observed.
Merkel said that although the fighting had deescalated somewhat, the ceasefire had not been fully implemented, and there was a problem with a lack of transparency in the withdrawal of heavy weapons, Ukraine Today reports.
Yatseniuk reiterated Ukraine’s commitment to the ceasefire deal, while stressing that Russia has failed to adhere to the agreement so far, as 75 Ukrainian troops have been killed and many more injured since the signing of the latest ceasefire.
However, he acknowledged that Minsk-2 deal signed on February, 12 is “the only road map” for de-escalation of the situation.
In an effort to prevent fragile ceasefire from falling apart, Merkel and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko earlier agreed on the need to hold a meeting of foreign ministers from Russia, Ukraine, France and Germany as soon as possible.
Plans for the possible deployment of a peacekeeping force in Ukraine were also discussed.
Meanwhile, President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko said in an interview with Bloomberg that the involvement of the United States was needed to achieve stability in Ukraine conflict.
See unian.info’s video section for more of the latest news from Ukraine in video from Ukraine Today, Ukraine’s 24-hour English-language news channel.