Over the 6 years of the Minsk process, we have to constantly face cases of outright disinformation from the Ukrainian authorities, so it would seem that nothing can surprise us anymore. However, Kiev still succeeds: in particular, Mr. Reznikov who made a statement following yesterday's Contact Group meeting that has nothing to do with the real course of the meeting.
Thus, the deputy head of the Ukrainian delegation in his media statement speaks about the efforts of the Ukrainian party to maintain the ceasefire. However, in fact, Kiev has been for more than six months systematically ignoring all our calls to finally agree on an updated package of measures to strengthen this regime. At the same time, Ukrainian representatives repeat like a mantra about "humanitarian" demining, but they do not give any answer to our question about how they imagine the process of demining in conditions when every day the armed formations of Ukraine several times shell our territory.
A similar situation occurred in the humanitarian block of the Contact Group's work: over the past two meetings, we have persistently called on both Mr. Kravchuk and Mr. Reznikov to answer a very simple question: why, according to Kiev, it is dangerous to transport humanitarian goods through the Elenovka-Novotroitskoe checkpoint, but at the same time the crossing of citizens is carried out as before? However, neither the head of the Ukrainian delegation nor his deputy want or cannot answer even such elementary questions. But they have enough eloquence to communicate with the media and tell them about “constructive efforts” at the Minsk platform: unfortunately, the Ukrainian media, unlike us, do not ask the representatives of Kiev uncomfortable questions.
And it is absolutely outrageous that Mr. Reznikov commented this demonstrative leaving the Contact Group meeting with the phrase “the Ukrainian delegation proposed to return to the trilateral format”. The minister “for the reintegration of Donbass” either suffers from selective memory, or deliberately omits the events that actually happened yesterday, since there were no such proposals from Kiev. On the contrary, it was Ukraine that violated the established format of the Contact Group by inviting its “public experts”, and it was Ukraine that staged a dramatic performance demanding to exclude from the negotiations our public representatives, who were included in our delegation based on the principle of mirror steps. Constructive proposals to restore the previous format were voiced by us, not by Kiev. But, like all our other proposals, the Ukrainian side ignored them.
The result of the Ukrainian representatives demarche that took place yesterday was the aggravation of the already deep stagnation in the work on a political settlement. At the same time, Kiev has clearly shown that instead of trying to find a way out of this situation, it is much more interesting for them to create in the media space an illusory picture of their productive activities in negotiations. However, these illusions are worthless - with each such deliberate disruption of the negotiations, Ukraine is increasingly destroying not only the prospects for at least a tiny progress in the Minsk talks, but in general the foundations of the entire peace process, which were built with such difficulty over these 6 years.