MOSCOW, May 08. /ITAR-TASS/. Kiev has essentially jeopardized the efforts of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) to launch an inclusive dialogue in Ukraine, the Russian Foreign Ministry said on Thursday, May 8.
In telephone conversation with his German counterpart Frank-Walter Steinmeier, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov stressed that “the Russian president’s appeal yesterday to representatives of the south-eastern regions of Ukraine and supporters of federalization to postpone the referendum slated for May 11 creates favorable conditions for starting a substantive and equal dialogue between the Ukrainian sides on the basis of the roadmap proposed by the Swiss Presidency of the OSCE for settling the crisis in Ukraine”.
“Putting an immediate stop to the use of force, primarily of the regular army, and practical steps to disarm illegal armed groups are an obligatory condition,” the ministry said.
“The reaction to the results of the Moscow meeting between the presidents of Russia and Switzerland that came from the Kiev authorities, who have essentially jeopardized the OSCE efforts to launch an inclusive dialogue, is deeply regrettable,” the ministry said.
The two ministers continued to “discuss the crisis in Ukraine and international efforts to reduce tensions in the country, primarily in the context of the May 7 talks between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Swiss President and Chairperson-in-Office of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) Didier Burkhalter”, the ministry said.
Lavrov and Steinmeier also discussed the steps that need to be taken “in order to prevent the frustration of the Swiss Presidency’s initiative”.