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Russia’s OSCE envoy says Kiev capable of fulfilling Minsk peace deal

January 29, 2016, 11:56 UTC+3 MOSCOW

Moscow expects that the Western colleagues will provide Kiev with the necessary support, including through the OSCE, Alexander Lukashevich says

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Russia’s envoy to OSCE Alexander Lukashevich

Russia’s envoy to OSCE Alexander Lukashevich

© Mikhail Pochuev/ITAR-TASS

MOSCOW, January 29. /TASS/. Moscow believes Kiev can implement the Minsk peace agreements and calls on the European partners to support the Ukrainian government in these moves, Russia’s envoy to the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) said on Friday.

"We know that the Kiev authorities can fulfill the Minsk agreements. We expect that the Western colleagues will provide them with the necessary support here, including through the OSCE," Alexander Lukashevich said in a statement posted on the Russian Foreign Ministry’s website.

Kiev deliberately maintains tensions along Donbass contact line

The authorities in Kiev are trying to delay the implementation of the political part of the Minsk accords failing to comply with the provision on granting permanent special status to the Donbass region, Lukashevich has told a meeting of the OSCE Permanent Council. The text of his speech has been posted on the website of the Russian Foreign Ministry on Friday.

"The authorities in Kiev are evidently trying to delay the implementation of the political part of the Minsk agreements — granting permanent special status to Donbass, coordinating the law on local elections and holding the Constitutional reform," Lukashevich said. "We see persisting unwillingness to comply with the provision on amnesty and abandon the persecution over developments in Donbass."

According to him, full ceasefire and weaponry withdrawal are required to resolve the Ukrainian crisis. "The problem is that Ukraine deliberately maintains tensions along the line of contact in the Donbass region," he said. "This is evidenced by its military preparations, rotation of troops, the appearance of new military equipment and the presence of the nationalist battalions in the security zone. Reports on the appearance of foreign mercenaries there are alarming as well."

"Russia’s stance on resolving the Ukrainian crisis remains consistently unchanged," Lukashevich said. "The key to it is the comprehensive implementation of the Minsk Package of Measures, and it is now in the hands of Kiev. Real progress on all issues, including on the political aspect, is only possible through dialogue between the warring parties — Kiev, Donetsk and Luhansk." "Russia is ready to promote this dialogue in the future," he added.

The diplomat also said he was surprised by doubts voiced by the Ukrainian authorities that there is a need to adopt a new law on elections in Donbass. "We are surprised by the doubts of Ukrainian representatives about the need for the new law on polls in Donbass. The existing legislation has not been agreed with the regions’ representatives as demanded by the Package of Measures, and is not in conformity with the situation."

The Russian side is also monitoring the issue on reforming the Ukrainian constitution, Lukashevich said.

The Minsk deal approved in the Belarussian capital on February 12, 2015 by Normandy Four (Russia, Ukraine, Germany and France) and also by the Contact Group envisages that the new constitution should be adopted.

The constitution’s key element is decentralization with taking into account the particularities of certain areas of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions agreed with their representatives and also the adoption of a permanent legislation on the special status, he reminded.

"The amendments that do not envisage the inclusion in the constitution of the provisions on the permanent special status of Donbass and not agreed with it cannot be considered as Kiev’s meeting the Minsk commitments," the diplomat stressed.

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