US imposes new sanctions on Syria over suspected chemical attackWorld April 24, 21:23
Russian businessman plans to build sailplane to fly around the globe nonstop in 5 daysScience & Space April 24, 19:50
Roscosmos excludes three cosmonauts from space teamScience & Space April 24, 19:34
Russian Foreign Ministry: Terrorists in Syria may get chemical weapons from Libya, IraqRussian Politics & Diplomacy April 24, 19:05
US not ready yet to restart arms control dialog, Russian diplomat saysRussian Politics & Diplomacy April 24, 18:57
Court recognizes Russia’s Sports Ministry as affected party in WADA whistleblower caseSport April 24, 18:48
Elephant, giraffe and wildcats found among Muscovites’ house petsSociety & Culture April 24, 17:48
Putin calls for setting apart real anti-corruption crusaders from political show-offsRussian Politics & Diplomacy April 24, 16:34
Moscow court turns down Jehovah’s Witnesses bid to fight Justice Ministry’s banWorld April 24, 16:08
BERLIN, March 6. /TASS/. The representatives of foreign ministries of the Normandy Four (Russia, Germany, France and Ukraine) will gather today in Berlin to discuss the implementation of the Minsk agreements from February 12. Russia will be represented by Deputy Foreign Minister Grigory Karasin. Among participants in the meeting are also the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe’s (OSCE) special envoy to Ukraine Heidi Tagliavini and Chief Monitor of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine (SMM) Ertugrul Apakan.
The meeting in Berlin will be held at the initiative of the leaders of the four countries. The agenda for the talks was set on March 2 during a telephone conversation between Russian President Vladimir Putin, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Francois Hollande and Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko, Karasin said earlier. The "Normandy Quartet" is not fully satisfied with the progress in the implementation of the Minsk agreements, he added. "Unfortunately, we cannot yet say that the sides are satisfied with how everything [the Minsk agreements] is implemented," the deputy foreign minister said. "There are certain positive developments, but the main thing now is to concentrate on completing heavy weaponry withdrawal in accordance with the parameters that were agreed and strictly defined by the package of measures on implementing the Minsk agreements," he noted. Among other issues on the meeting’s agenda are social and economic conditions in the conflict zone.
The meeting in Berlin "will be held in the framework of agreements on the so-called control mechanism in the ‘Normandy format’," a diplomatic source told TASS. "The leaders of the four countries agreed in Minsk that such meetings will be held at the level of senior officials from foreign ministries in order to send certain political signals," the source added.
On February 12, negotiations in the "Normandy format" were held in the Belarusian capital Minsk, bringing together Russian President Vladimir Putin, French President Francois Hollande, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko. The talks lasted for around 14 hours.
Simultaneously, a meeting of the Contact Group on Ukrainian settlement was held in Minsk, bringing together former Ukrainian President Leonid Kuchma and Kiev’s special representative for humanitarian issues Viktor Medvedchuk, both representing the Ukrainian side, alongside representatives of the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics (DPR and LPR), Denis Pushilin and Vladislav Deinego, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe’s (OSCE) special envoy to Ukraine, Heidi Tagliavini, and Russia’s ambassador to Ukraine, Mikhail Zurabov, who acts as a mediator.
As a result, a package of measures on implementing the Minsk agreements was adopted, including on ceasefire in ceratin areas of Donetsk and Luhansk regions starting February 15, heavy weaponry withdrawal and long-term political settlement of the Ukrainian crisis.