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Ukraine envoy: Kiev not to discuss federalization at Geneva talks

GENEVA, April 15. /ITAR-TASS/. The Ukrainian delegation will not discuss federalization of the country at four-party talks involving Russia, Ukraine, the United States and the European Union and scheduled for April 17 in Geneva, Ukraine’s permanent representative in the UN Office and other international organizations in Geneva, Yury Klimenko, said Tuesday.

“Ukraine is not going to discuss domestic Ukrainian issues at that meeting, so we will not touch upon questions of Ukraine’s federalization. The issue is not on the agenda,” Klimenko told Itar-Tass.

The Geneva meeting’s key aim will be to “de-escalate the conflict on Ukrainian borders and restore economic ties between Russia and Ukraine”, he said.

Protests against the new Ukrainian authorities, brought to power as a result of a coup in February, have erupted in Ukraine’s Russian-speaking southeastern territories, in particular, the Donetsk, Lugansk and Kharkov regions, with demonstrators demanding referendums on the country’s federalization.

The events followed reunification of Crimea, where most residents are Russians, with the Russian Federation in mid-March after a referendum in which an overwhelming majority of Crimeans voted to secede from Ukraine and join Russia.