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Donetsk republic hopes Minsk talks will be unaffected by NATO chief’s visit

September 22, 2015, 9:04 UTC+3 MOSCOW
The NATO chief together with President Petro Poroshenko opened the joint international civilian consequence management exercise, Ukraine 2015, in the Lviv region
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Militia fighters in east Ukraine, Sep. 21

Militia fighters in east Ukraine, Sep. 21

© EPA/ALEXANDER ERMOCHENKO

MOSCOW, September 22. /TASS/. The authorities of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic expect that the visit of NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg will not influence Kiev’s stance at Tuesday’s meeting in Minsk, DPR’s negotiator Denis Pushilin has said.

"This is not the first visit of high-ranking Western politicians to Ukraine ahead of the meetings in Minsk. Each time such a visit makes adjustments in the Ukrainian government’s policy. I would not want to think that this visit will have negative consequences for the negotiating process," Pushilin told the Donetsk news agency.

Stoltenberg arrived in Ukraine on Monday for a two-day visit. The NATO chief together with President Petro Poroshenko opened the joint international civilian consequence management exercise, Ukraine 2015, in the Lviv region.

The secretary general is also expected to attend a meeting at the National Security and Defense Council and hold talks with the prime minister and the speaker of Ukraine’s parliament.

On Tuesday, Minsk hosts another round of talks on resolving the conflict in Donbas, which has killed nearly 8,000 people and left another 17,811 wounded since mid-April 2014, according to the UN figures.

Four working subgroups on humanitarian, political, economic and security issues are due to hold a meeting to be followed by the talks of the Contact Group of senior representatives of Russia, Ukraine, the self-proclaimed republics and the OSCE.

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