MINSK, September 01. /ITAR-TASS/. A next session of the Contact Group on Ukraine is scheduled for September 5, said the vice-premier of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DNR) Andrei Purgin who took part in the Monday meeting.
No details of the almost four-hour-long talks on Monday have been disclosed.“We exchanged documents, the Ukrainian side presented its view, while we presented ours,” Purgin told reporters, adding that concrete matters would be discussed on September 5.
According to him, it would be expedient at the moment to have a time-out to analyze proposals. He also said that first steps towards a ceasefire had been made on Monday. The parties also discussed a prisoner swap on the ‘all for all’ basis.
A source close to the consultations told ITAR-TASS that the warring sides would set up working groups to deal with concrete tasks - a prisoner exchange, the use of heavy artillery and aircraft and control over that. “A separate group will deal with the ceasefire,” he said.
The Contact Group was represented by Ukraine’s former president Leonid Kuchma, Russia’s Ambassador to Ukraine Mikhail Zurabov and representative of the OSCE chairperson-in-office on Ukraine Heidi Tagliavini. Also taking part in the consultations were Andrei Purgin and the chairman of the Supreme Council of the self-proclaimed Luhansk People’s Republic, Valery Karyakin.
The initiative to set up a contact group for Ukraine crisis settlement came in February, and its first session was held in Kiev early in June. On July 31, Minsk hosted a session of the Contact Group with participation of representatives of the Donetsk People’s Republic leadership. The latest session was held in the Ukrainian capital Kiev on August 14 and focues on logistics aspects of the dispatch of humanitarian aid for the embattled south-east of the country.