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Kiev undermines peace deal by scrapping law on special status to east - Russian diplomat

November 13, 2014, 4:42 UTC+3 UNITED NATIONS
Alexander Pankin, Russia’s first deputy permanent representative to the United Nations, said on Wednesday
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UNITED NATIONS, November 13. /TASS/. Kiev’s move to cancel a law offering special status to areas in the east undermines a peace deal reached in Minsk, Alexander Pankin, Russia’s first deputy permanent representative to the United Nations, said on Wednesday.

Moscow was seriously concerned about Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko’s decision to revoke the law that would have granted special self-government to the Donetsk and Lugansk regions, Pankin told a session of the UN Security Council, adding that this was “the cornerstone” of the Minsk agreement, reached in September, which was being completely undermined in that way.

Pankin acknowledged that “the law was not perfect and had limited legitimacy” since the Verkhovna Rada, Ukraine's parliament, had not defined areas to be offered special status, and setting December 7 as the date for elections “was not agreed with representatives of Donetsk and Lugansk and violated Ukraine's constitution”.

“At the same time, this law could have served as a basis for future talks between Kiev and local militias,” Pankin added.

Shortly after the November 2 elections in the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics, the Verkhovna Rada registered several bills on revocation of the special status.

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said last week Kiev was ready to enact a new law on Donbass special status which would draw clear-cut borders of districts with special local self-rule status.

However, among conditions for endorsing the new law he named several steps which the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics should take that would mean “a retreat” in the issue of the November 2 elections.

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