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Minsk could host next meeting of Contact group on Ukraine on Dec. 21 — Poroshenko

December 17, 2014, 15:29 UTC+3 WARSAW
Poroshenko said a video conference of the Contact group is due on Thursday or Friday
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Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko

Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko

© EPA/Olivier Douliery / POOL

WARSAW, December 17. /TASS/. The next meeting of the Contact group on ending theconflict in eastern Ukraine may be held in the Belarusian capital Minsk on December 21, Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko said on Wednesday.

Poroshenko made the statement during a joint press conference with Polish President Bronislaw Komorowski. He said a video conference of the Contact group is due on Thursday or Friday.

“There is hope that on Sunday Minsk will host a meeting of a three-party Contact group which will discuss the release of all the captives, the ceasefire, the broadcast of Ukraine’s television on the territory of the Lugansk and Donetsk regions, and holding local elections in line with Ukrainian laws,” Poroshenko said.

After the Minsk meeting, the leaders of Russia, Germany, France and Ukraine will hold negotiations in the so-called Normandy format, Poroshenko said. “We need actions, not words,” he stressed.

The Ukrainian leader said the only progress now is that no deaths have been reported over the past six days in a row on the front territory. “This signals that the sides may ensure ceasefire,” he said, adding: “We need to implement all the 12 points of the Minsk agreements.”

The Kremlin press service said Russian President Vladimir Putin, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Francois Hollande and Poroshenko have called for convening the Contact group meeting in the interest of fulfilling the Minsk agreements and establishing a dialogue between Kiev and the southeast. This was confirmed during a phone conversation as the four leaders discussed the crisis in Ukraine.

The meeting of the group was initially scheduled to be held in Minsk between December 9 and December 12. However, the event was postponed at the initiative of the Ukrainian authorities.

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