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Minsk Accords voluntarily signed by Kiev, do not imply coercion, Russian top diplomat says

"When the Ukrainian state <...> is doing everything in order to prohibit itself from implementing the Minsk Accords, we draw to it the attention of those who drew them up together with us, above all, of Germany, France, but also of other Western countries who try to shift the blame from the regime in Kiev in every way," Sergey Lavrov pointed out

MOSCOW, September 1. /TASS/. Fulfilling the Minsk Accords on the settlement in eastern Ukraine requires no coercion, this document was voluntarily coordinated with and signed by Kiev, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said speaking before the students and teaching staff of the Russian Foreign Ministry’s MGIMO university on Wednesday.

"The Minsk Accords do not provide for any duress, they were voluntarily coordinated and voluntarily signed and unanimously approved by the UN Security Council, by this token becoming a part of international law," he said in response to a question as to whether Moscow can force Kiev come to a peaceful resolution within the framework of the Minsk Accords.

"And when the Ukrainian state both under the [former president Pyotr] Poroshenko and under [Vladimir] Zelensky is doing everything in order to prohibit itself from implementing the Minsk Accords, we draw to it the attention of those who drew them up together with us, above all, of Germany, France, but also of other Western countries who try to shift the blame from the regime in Kiev in every way," he added.

The Russian top diplomat pointed out that by saying that Kiev wants to prohibit itself from implementing this document he means a whole series of laws that "firstly, essentially, ban the Russian language, secondly, prohibit granting any special authority to those territories that proclaimed themselves the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics, prohibit coordinating with them the parameters of holding local elections there." "And all of this is the very essence of the Minsk Accords," he explained.

The Russian foreign minister added that this issue was raised during recent talks in Moscow between German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Russian President Vladimir Putin. "We showed to our German colleagues the legislative bans that Zelensky approves for himself in order to later find excuses for his complete inability to fulfill what is being demanded, actually, by all countries," Lavrov emphasized. "Because the lack of alternatives to the Minsk Accords in order to settle the crisis in Donbass is proclaimed by all without exception," he concluded.