MOSCOW, February 16. /TASS/. Russia took into account the need to implement the Minsk Accords and exerted numerous efforts to make sure that the commitments under the deal were implemented by Ukraine, France, and Germany, Russian Presidential Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Thursday.
The Russian presidential spokesman responded with a negative reply to a question as to whether Moscow assumed that the deal would not be carried out once the accords were signed.
"You know how much effort the Russian side invested into the negotiating track in order to force both the Ukrainian side and Berlin and Paris to go down the path of fulfilling the commitments that the parties had undertaken under the Minsk agreements," he continued.
According to Peskov, Moscow "exerted a great deal of effort" into the Minsk Accords. He recalled that the talks on the issue involved the personal participation of President Vladimir Putin, ex-Presidential Aide Vladislav Surkov and Head of the Russian Presidential Administration Dmitry Kozak.
"Undoubtedly, the main objective was to force Kiev to fulfill its obligations," Peskov told the news briefing.
The Minsk Accords were the cornerstone of the Donbass peace process. The deal outlined moves to declare a ceasefire, withdraw weapons, declare amnesty, restore economic ties and conduct constitutional reform in Ukraine through dialogue with the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics (DPR, LPR), aimed at decentralizing power and providing a special status to certain districts of the Donetsk and Lugansk regions.
However, the negotiation process had actually stalled because of Kiev’s refusal to fulfill the political provisions of the Minsk accords.
In particular, Kiev rejected holding any direct dialogue with the DPR and the LPR, opposed the consolidation of the regions’ special status in the constitution, and also demanded that a section of the border with Russia in Donbass be placed under Ukrainian control until the political part of the deal was implemented.