Foreign Minister Steinmeier issued the following statement in Berlin on 26 September on the agreement between Russia and Ukraine on energy supplies for the coming winter:
The fact that an agreement has been reached after long and difficult negotiations is good news, even though I would have preferred there to have been planning security for a longer period for all sides.
The negotiations were hard work. I would like to thank especially Commissioner Šefčovič, without whose great dedication this result would not have been achieved.
For now, we have a workable solution for the coming winter at least that will help to avoid a humanitarian crisis in Ukraine and contribute to greater economic and social stability in Ukraine with financial support from Europe.
I hope that no further difficulties will arise now in the efforts to implement this agreement.
I expect, also with a view to the Normandy format summit this coming Friday, the constructive spirit that led to this agreement to prevail once again in overcoming the crisis in eastern Ukraine and in the implementation of the Minsk agreements. Otherwise there is a risk that the conflict will slip back into a fresh phase of military and political escalation.