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Foreign Minister Gabriel after his meeting today with the Foreign Ministers of France, Russia and Ukraine on the fringes of the Munich Security Conference

18.02.2017 - Press release

Foreign Minister Gabriel issued the following statement today (18 February) after his meeting with the Foreign Ministers of France, Russia and Ukraine on the fringes of the Munich Security Conference:

At today's foreign ministers meeting in the Normandy format on the fringes of the Munich Security Conference, we, the Foreign Ministers of France, Russia, Ukraine and Germany, reached the following agreements regarding the serious escalation of cease-fire violations in eastern Ukraine:

All parties will use their influence to implement the agreement reached in the Trilateral Contact Group on 15 February, namely to arrive at a cease-fire with effect from 20 February and to do what has long been agreed but never came about: removing and securing heavy weapons from the area and giving the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission the opportunity to monitor where they are.

We have agreed that the exchange of prisoners is to be continued rapidly ‑ with the support of the International Committee of the Red Cross.

We will meet again in a few weeks to continue working on the next steps in the political process ‑ that will be the most difficult task. But without a cease-fire and without the withdrawal of heavy weapons, the political process cannot gain momentum.

Together, we appeal to those who are currently blocking roads and railway tracks to stop these blockades because they are harming both sides ‑ those who want to export coal and those who need it to generate electricity.

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