DONETSK, December 19. /TASS/. A video conference of the Contact Group on settling the crisis in Ukraine is due to be held at 3:00 p.m. Moscow Time on Friday (1200 GMT), the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic (DPR) envoy at talks, Denis Pushilin, said.
Donetsk has not changed its position on the talks and will insist on observing the “silence regime” declared on December 9, the withdrawal of artillery and multiple rocket launchers, as well as the exchange of prisoners of war.
Pushilin said at the meeting in Minsk the Donetsk republic will demand that Ukraine should step-by-step lift its economic blockade of the region and implement the laws on the Donbass special status and amnesty.
Earlier this week, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said a Skype conference of Contact Group participants on the settlement of the situation in Ukraine might be organized within days. He also said a preliminary date for Minsk consultations was December 21.
The leadership of the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Luhansk republics earlier confirmed their readiness to participate in the conference.
The format of a video conference of the Contact Group on settling the Ukrainian crisis remains unchanged and does not envisage the participation of the EU and the US in it, Denis Pushilin went on to say.
“The format will be the same. It could probably result in a date for a meeting in Minsk. The Donetsk People’s Republic is calling for immediately holding the next round of talks,” Denis Pushilin was quoted by the Donetsk news agency as saying.