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Kiev uses Minsk peace deal only for speculation and PR - Lugansk leader

Leonid Pasechnik stressed that the Minsk deal had been signed by the Normandy Four group, including Ukraine, and the document was legally binding

LUGANSK, September 15. /TASS/. Ukraine’s authorities view the Minsk peace deal on settling the crisis in Donbass only as a tool for speculation and PR, Head of the self-proclaimed Lugansk People’s Republic Leonid Pasechnik said on Sunday.

"Yesterday [Ukrainian Foreign Minister] Vadim Pristaiko joined Leonid Kuchma and Vladimir Zelensky, who are reluctant to implement the Minsk agreements. So, almost all key foreign policy figures in Ukraine have signaled that the Minsk agreements for them are just an issue for speculation and PR, rather than a tool for ending war and halting the five-year-old conflict that is killing innocent people," Pasechnik said in a statement quoted by the LuganskInformCenter.

The LPR head stressed that the Minsk deal had been signed by the Normandy Four group, including Ukraine, and the document was legally binding. The agreement stipulates confirming a special status of Donbass in the constitution and amnesty for people, who "were not afraid of protecting their rights, and whom Kiev started imprisoning and killing for that," he said.

"The process of confirming the special status in Ukraine’s constitution is a key moment. Without this foundation, President Zelensky’s party will be able to amend this law at any moment or cancel it. It’s not enough for Vladimir Zelensky to give promises on ending war, it’s time for switching to action and meeting respective deals - this is the only real way of establishing peace in Donbass," the LPR head stressed.

Ukrainian Foreign Minister Vadim Pristaiko said on Saturday that Kiev would not amend the country’s constitution to include the provisions on granting a special status to Donbass. He also said no amnesty would be provided for the Ukrainian conflict participants, although this was stipulated by the Minsk peace agreements. Earlier, the head of Ukraine’s delegation in the Contact Group Leonid Kuchma made a similar statement, stressing that President Vladimir Zelensky would not grant a special status to Donbass.

In comment on Kuchma’s statement, Russia’s envoy to the Contact Group Boris Gryzlov noted that any decisions and steps by Kiev and Donbass should be in line with the Minsk deal, stressing that such statements were a direct violation of the agreement, thus jeopardizing the entire peace process. He noted that this move was aimed at whipping up conflict in Donbass rather than achieving peace as promised to Ukrainian voters.