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US playing destructive role in Ukrainian conflict - Russian UN envoy

December 12, 2015, 2:54 UTC+3 UNITED NATIONS
"Obviously, this is one of the reasons why political settlement is so difficult," Vitaly Churkin said
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Russia’s Permanent Representaive to the United Nations Vitaly Churkin

Russia’s Permanent Representaive to the United Nations Vitaly Churkin

© EPA/PETER FOLEY, archive

UNITED NATIONS, December 11. /TASS/. The United States is playing a destructive role in the Ukrainian settlement seeking to shield its Kiev partners, Russian Permanent Representative at the United Nations Vitaly Churkin said on Friday.

In his words, discussions of the Ukrainian problem at the United Nations Security Council had not raised to the level of unbiased analysis of the implementation of the Minsk agreements.

"The speech of the United States’ representative that was abundant in distortions only proved that Washington has been playing a destructive role throughout the entire Ukrainian crisis, from its very genesis up till now. This role is out of the context of the Normandy Four (Russia, Germany, France, Ukraine - TASS) efforts. Obviously, this is one of the reasons why political settlement is so difficult," he said.

The Russian diplomat noted that Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavel Klimkin’s speech could not be called unbiased either. "He said the Ukrainian authorities understand their responsibility for the implementation of the Minsk agreements of February 12, 2015 and United Nations Security Council resolution 2202 that rendered a status of a document of international law to these agreements. However the Kiev authorities keep on losing possibilities for political settlement of the crisis that had gripped Ukraine," Churkin said.

"Russia has been doing its part of work in the Minsk format," he stressed, adding he hoped Ukraine’s authorities would ultimately demonstrate political will to settle the situation in Donbass. "Mr. minister, don’t you think it is time for a new approach," the Russian diplomat addressed the Ukrainian foreign minister.

Klimkin, in turn, drew a parallel between the Minsk process and "an unassembled puzzle" and tried to put the blame for the situation on Russia. He once again suggested a "peacekeeping mission" be deployed in Ukraine.

"The only chance to prevent a new round of large-scale war is to implement Minsk-2," Klimkin said. "It is the only way to put an end to the conflict. Ukraine is committed to it. This is our bridge to future and we are not going to burn it."

The Trilateral Contact Group on Ukraine comprising senior representatives from Russia, Ukraine and the European security watchdog OSCE on February 12, 2015, signed a 13-point Package of Measures to fulfil the September 2014 Minsk agreements. The package was agreed with the leaders of the Normandy Four, namely Russia, Germany, France and Ukraine.

The Package of Measures, known as Minsk-2, envisaged a ceasefire between Ukrainian government forces and people’s militias in the self-proclaimed republics in Donetsk and Lugansk starting from February 15 and subsequent withdrawal of heavy weapons from the line of engagement. The deal also laid out a roadmap for a lasting settlement in Ukraine, including local elections and constitutional reform to give more autonomy to the war-torn eastern regions.

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