Before travelling to the meeting of the Foreign Ministers of France, Germany, Russia and Ukraine in Paris, Foreign Minister Steinmeier issued the following statement on 23 June:
We are hearing worrying reports from eastern Ukraine. The agreed ceasefire is being violated on a daily basis, even more so than a few weeks ago.
The severe crisis in eastern Ukraine is far from over.
All parties to the conflict must help prevent military escalation reaching the point at which it spirals out of control, in military and subsequently political terms.
A robust ceasefire, the withdrawal of heavy weapons and free access for the OSCE observers are all key pre‑requisites for further steps towards a political solution to the conflict such as local elections, humanitarian assistance and economic recovery.
We must do everything within our power to ensure that the de‑escalation we had already achieved does not come to nothing. The parties to the conflict owe it to themselves and the people for whom they have assumed responsibility to now finally start making progress in implementing the Minsk agreements.