Minsk peace deal must be implemented, says Merkel

Chancellor Merkel said that Minsk deal must be implemented by contracting parties in Ukraine crisis

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

German Chancellor Merkel, French President Hollande and Ukrainian President Poroshenko speak to media after their meeting in the Chancellery in Berlin

Following a meeting with French President Francois Hollande and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko in the Berlin Summit on Monday, German Chancellor Angela Merkel told reporters the Minsk II peace deal to end the crisis in eastern Ukraine must be implemented.

"The cease fire agreement hasn't been fully implemented and that's meant that there have been more and more victims," Merkel said after the meeting.

The Minsk II agreement was signed by the leaders of Ukraine, Russia, France, and Germany to take measures for appeasing the ongoing war in the Donbass region of Ukraine on Feb. 11, 2015.

Chancellor Merkel also added "the first and foremost condition is that everything is done to make the cease fire agreement a reality. The task at hand means that what we agreed in Minsk has to be respected."

Merkel adamantly presented their position on the Minsk II agreement saying "we are here to implement the Minsk deal, not to call it into question."

Merkel also expressed the concerns to the parties which comprises Germany, Russia, Ukraine and France – known as the Normandy format – of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) observers’ equipment that they have been disrupted, German news agency DPA International reported.

"The OSCE has to be able to monitor the conflict, but there have been attacks and its monitors' movements restricted. Its drones have not been able to fly because of repeated disruptions," she said adding "their ability to do their job is paramount."

After the summit, Poroshenko also told reporters that Ukraine’s aim is to make the country much more secure to OSCE observers.

"We see only one danger to peace and stability in the region, we must make the situation of the OSCE observers more secure, because that is the guarantee for the peace process,” he said to reporters adding, “we must secure the unimpeded access to all areas, including the Ukrainian-Russian border. Also in order to verify whether Russian troops operate in Ukraine or not."

Ukraine President Petro Poroshenko, before heading to the summit in Berlin, accused the Russian Federation of supplying arms to Russian-backed forces in eastern Ukraine.

"Just this week, three big convoys crossed our border towards Lugansk, Donetsk and Debaltseve," Poroshenko said.

Poroshenko also stated that up to 50,000 Russian soldiers have settled on the Ukraine border and 9,000 Russian servicemen are among the 40,000 fighters within the rebel forces.

The Russian aim is to undermine Kiev’s relation with European countries, said Poroshenko, stressing that a new military convoy crossed the border to help the rebel forces in eastern Ukraine.

Last week, the Russian chief of diplomacy Sergei Lavrov, said in a speech on the annexed region Sevastopol, Crimea that both Germany and France are guarantors of the peace agreement which was pronounced in February to have escalated additional pressure on Kiev.

European leaders prepared a review of economic sanctions over Russia which are linked to the full implementation of the cease fire deal.

Russia responded with tit for tat measures on economic sanctions with a ban on food imports, that was implemented last year.  

Germany, Russia’s largest trading partner, has also been strained by the economic sanctions.

TRTWorld and agencies