On 17 April Federal Foreign Minister Steinmeier issued the following statement on the talks in Geneva:
Peace has not yet been achieved in Ukraine, and we still have a very long way to go. But we have regained the chance to avoid a division of Ukraine and for all regions of Ukraine to shape the country’s economic and political future.
The outcome from Geneva deserves respect. The foreign ministers of Ukraine, Russia and the United States and the EU High Representative agreed on concrete, practical steps to de-escalate tensions. The participants agreed on the renunciation of violence, the disarmament of illegal groups, the clearance of illegally seized buildings and the granting of an amnesty. The OSCE, as an independent observer directly on the ground, is to play a leading role in implementing these measures.
An important step has been taken. But the litmus test is still to come. Now it must be shown that the steps agreed in Geneva do not just remain a list on a piece of paper but have a tangible impact on policy.