Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Donetsk People's Republic

STATEMENT OF NATALIA NIKONOROVA REGARDING THE PRESIDENT OF UKRAINE STATEMENTS

24 July 2020
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With very unpleasant surprise, we familiarized ourselves with the statement of the President of Ukraine that the agreements on additional measures to control the existing indefinite ceasefire should allegedly be signed by representatives of the countries of the Normandy Four for entry into force.

It took us almost 5 months of an extremely difficult and tense negotiation process to get the Ukrainian representatives to agree and sign clear commitments on measures to ensure the ceasefire regime. A fundamentally important point was the signing of these obligations by Ukraine - just in order to deprive the Ukrainian authorities of any opportunity to ignore and sabotage the implementation of these agreements. In addition, these measures were not only signed by the Ukrainian party and Republics’ representatives, but also endorsed by the negotiations mediators - the OSCE and Russian Federation.

It is important to understand that such agreements do not require additional signatures at all, because the most essential and key is precisely the fact of the written recording to these measures implementation by conflict parties - Kiev and Republics. Since these are our obligations and Ukraine’s. Nevertheless, we are grateful to Russia and the OSCE for expressing their support to agreements and confirming them in writing.

However, the very next day after the signing of the armistice measures, the Ukrainian president canceled the signature of his representative in the Contact group. Thus, Vladimir Zelensky literally with one phrase canceled all the progress achieved with such difficulty during the Minsk meetings in conflict resolving. It is obvious that such a step by the Ukrainian leader is a continuation of the destructive political line that was set by the resolution of Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine dated July 15 on the holding of local elections, when provisions that grossly violate the Minsk agreements were enshrined in Ukrainian legislation.

In this regard, one can only guess what happened to the desire of Ukraine’s leader to achieve peace in Donbass, about which he spoke with such enthusiasm during his election campaign. In addition, a fair question arises: How is it generally possible to talk and negotiate about anything with those persons who participate in the Contact Group sittings as delegates of Ukraine, if the next day their signatures can be canceled so easily by the Ukrainian president?

We appeal to the guarantors of the Minsk agreements and to the entire world community with an appeal to exert all possible pressure on Ukraine’s leader in order not to allow him to disrupt the agreements on which the lives of thousands of people depend. For our part, we are ready to implement all the commitments we have assumed, but this is not a one-sided process - Ukraine must also show its will to implement peace agreements.