NEW YORK, September 22. /ITAR-TASS/. Russia has taken note of all unfriendly signals, including those targeting Russia, heard when Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko was visiting Washington, Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov told ITAR-TASS on Sunday.
“We regret that there are rather influential circles that work against a tendency towards stabilization in an absolutely definite way,” he said.
“If we take Minsk agreements reached by the Contact Group (on Ukraine) and compare them with statements heard from Washington when Poroshenko was there, an impartial reader will have nothing else left but be puzzled,” the diplomat said.
“It is strange that positive tendencies that cannot be denied were fully ignored by a lot of high-ranking politicians and responsible statesmen, making statements in Washington about the Ukrainian crisis when Poroshenko was there,” he said. “This makes us grow more and more convinced that the so-called party of war is strong not only in Kiev,” Ryabkov added.
“Those who are hypocritically calling for normalization of the situation, are indeed impeding this process - this is how I would characterize a number of signals heard from Washington when the Ukrainian president was on a visit to the United States,” Ryabkov said.
On September 5, the trilateral Contact Group on Ukraine (Russia, Ukraine and the OSCE) and representatives of the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Lugansk People’s republics reached an agreement on ceasefire in Ukraine’s embattled southeast, troops withdrawal, exchange of prisoners and provision of humanitarian aid.
Last Friday, the Contact Group signed a memorandum outlining the parameters for the implementation of the cease-fire commitments laid down in the Minsk Protocol of September 5.
The nine-point deal includes setting up of a 30-kilometer buffer zone, a ban on overflights of part of eastern Ukraine by military aircraft and the withdrawal of ‘foreign mercenaries’ on both sides.
The southeastern Ukrainian Donetsk and Lugansk regions have been the scene of fierce clashes between local militias and troops loyal to Kiev seeking to regain control over the breakaway territories, which on May 11 proclaimed their independence at local referendums and now call themselves the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s republics.