Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov will participate today in Berlin at the Normandy meeting to search for a settlement to the Ukrainian conflict, with cautious optimism given the lack of dialogue between Kiev and the rebels.
Confirming the presence of the minister at the meeting with his counterparts from Germany, France and Ukraine, the Foreign Ministry spokeswoman, Maria Zakharova said Russia’s optimism is ‘discreet’ because although there is a ceasefire, there are excesses and provocations.
The spokeswoman also said that Kiev’s refusal to talk directly with the insurgents of the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) and Lugansk (PRL) remains a problem.
It is very important to encourage the warring parties to honor the commitments made in the agreements of Minsk, stressed the spokeswoman.
48 hours after the signing of a law that allows foreign citizens and stateless persons to serve in the Armed Forces of Ukraine, President Petro Poroshenko failed in fact one of the points agreed in Minsk, which provides for «the withdrawal of all foreign forces».
According to the ruler’s press service, the document number 716-VIII adopted on last October 6th by the Supreme Rada (Ukrainian unicameral parliament) provides the foreign-born with the legal capacity to sign a service contract in the Armed Forces and other military formations, the statement said.
Thus the fighting capacity of Kiev’s troops will increase, the country will receive more capable, experienced and motivated combat units at the battalion level, for a total of up to a thousand people, adds the writing.
The increased presence of foreigners in the Armed Forces and other martial formations, reduces the need for the call to military service during the mobilization for a special period for Ukrainian citizens, concludes said writing, which ignores the explicit commitment agreements Minsk.
Recently, the negotiators in the Belarusian capital from the DPR and the PRL, Denis Pushilin and Vladislav Deinego, respectively, reported the consistency of the rebel regions with postponing the elections of October 18th and November 1st for ‘next year’ to save the negotiations.
Deinego and Pushilin expressed satisfaction in their statements with the fact that the four of Normandy took into account the proposal presented by the PRL to delay the elections until 2016.
That proposal includes as condition that Kiev meets all the points adopted on February 12th, 2015 in the Belarusian capital (Minsk-2), that the draft law on the elections in Donbass, the amendments to the Constitution of Ukraine, and any other document, must be endorsed by all participants in the peace negotiations.
Any changes not agreed without consulting the rebels will constitute «a blatant and unacceptable violation» of the agreements of Minsk, according to insurgent spokesmen.