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Lavrov considers full three-month observation of Donbass ceasefire impossible

June 16, 16:35 UTC+3
According to the Russian foreign minister there will always be someone who opens fire twice and says the regime has been violated
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Destroyed airport in Donetsk

Destroyed airport in Donetsk

© Mikhail Sokolov/TASS

ST. PETERSBURG, June 16. /TASS/. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said it is unreal to observe the full ceasefire in Donbass during three months.

"Our Ukrainian colleagues have again said that the Minsk agreements will start being implemented in full only if there is full and unconditional ceasefire without a single violation for at least three months," Lavrov said at the Valdai club session of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum.

"This is just unreal. There will be always someone who opens fire twice and says that the regime has been violated," he said.

The Ukrainian side earlier said that elections in Donbass must take no earlier than 90 days after the adoption of a special law. During the consultations in the Contact Group on settlement in eastern Ukraine Kiev insisted that the polls can be held only on the condition of a sustainable ceasefire.

Holding elections in Donbass is one of the key points of political settlement in eastern Ukraine. Under the Minsk deal of February 2015, the polls were due to take place last year along with the constitutional reform in Ukraine aimed at granting certain areas in the Donetsk and Lugansk region a special status on a permanent basis. However, the deadline has been repeatedly postponed due to Kiev’s refusal to comply with its commitments, in particular to grant amnesty to all participants of events in Donbass, to adopt legislation on a special status and to pass a law on elections. Late last year, the leaders of the Normandy Four group (Russia, Germany, France and Ukraine) set a new deadline for elections - the first half of 2016. Kiev still refuses to discuss preparations for elections explaining this by a low level of security in the region.

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