MOSCOW, February 9. /TASS/. Tensions in Ukraine will remain in place until Kiev starts talks with the self-proclaimed republics of Donetsk and Lugansk, Russian envoy to the UN, Vasily Nebenzya, said on Rossiya 24 television.
"Until our partners in Kiev come to the conclusion that dialogue with Donbass is the only way to resolve the conflict in Ukraine, of course, the situation will remain as it is," he said.
The envoy insisted that in order to resolve the Ukrainian conflict, Kiev must implement the full range of measures set forth in the Minsk agreements.
"The only way to put the matter to rest is by fulfilling the Minsk agreements," he said. "It must be admitted in all fairness that today we are very far from this, and not through our fault, not by our will."
Nebenzya put the spotlight on Western supplies of offensive weapons to Ukraine, saying they defied the Minsk accords.
"You know that the Western partners, in violation of the Minsk agreements, are inundating Kiev with weapons, and it’s offensive rather than defensive," he said. Ukrainian troops are massing near the line of contact in Donbass, he said.
Nebenzya reiterated that Russia isn’t going to commit any malicious actions against Ukraine, especially of a military nature. "Russia didn’t anywhere, on any level, officially state any malign plans with respect to Ukraine," he said.
The peaceful settlement of the Donbass conflict is based on the Minsk agreements, which provide not only for a ceasefire, the withdrawal of weapons, an amnesty, the resumption of economic ties, but also a profound constitutional reform in Ukraine based on a dialogue with representatives of the Donetsk and Lugansk People's Republics, which should result in the decentralization of power, taking into account the special status of certain areas of the Donetsk and Lugansk regions.
However, the negotiation process effectively stalled due to Ukraine's refusal to comply with the political clauses of the Minsk agreements. Kiev refuses to have direct dialogue with the DPR and LPR and enshrine the special status of the region in the constitution, and also demands that it takes control of the border between Russia and Donbass before the political part of the agreements is implemented, which is the reverse of what the Minsk agreements stipulate.