Foreign Minister Steinmeier on the ceasefire in eastern Ukraine: “We should do everything we can to support the Minsk agreement.”

07.09.2014 - Press release

Speaking in New Delhi on 7 September 2014 on the fringes of his trip to India, Federal Foreign Minister Steinmeier said:

Since Friday a ceasefire has indeed been in place in most of the regions in eastern Ukraine which had until that day been scenes of combat. Yet the incidents near Donetsk, Mariupol and in other places during the last 24 hours show how fragile the ceasefire still is and how quickly local military activity could dash all the political efforts even now. To achieve a truly permanent ceasefire we therefore need Kyiv and Moscow to show the strong political will to do so in order that all sides respect the Minsk agreements and do in fact stop fighting.

A ceasefire would be a very important step forward, yet it nonetheless marks no more than the start of a difficult political process which will have to tackle all the unresolved questions and conflicts of interest. The ceasefire should pave the way for the exchange of prisoners, effective border controls and, last but not least, dialogue on how the people in eastern Ukraine can make their political voice heard in Kyiv.

We should do everything we can to support and verify the implementation of the Minsk agreement. This could require the OSCE to extend its activities with regard to monitoring the ceasefire and controlling the border. We are willing to participate in these plans.

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