German and Russian Foreign Minister Discuss De-Escalation in Ukraine

The German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier and his Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov had a telephone conversation on Sunday, to discuss the situation in Ukraine and Kiev’s continued use of military force in the country’s southeastern regions.

The Russian Foreign Ministry reports about the conversation between the German and the Russian foreign minister, saying that Frank-Walter Steinmeier initiated the phone call to Sergei Lavrov, to discuss the possibilities for de-escalating the situation.

Steinmeier and Lavrov exchanged opinions on the situation and prospects for the development of the situation in Ukraine, possibilities for joint actions toward a political settlement of the conflict in line with the ´road map`offered by the Swiss OSCE Chair, reports the Foreign Ministery.

The Russian Foreign Ministry added:

“The ministers expressed concern over continuing armed clashes, and agreed on a need for an urgent de-escalation of the situation, renunciation of the use of force in order to avoid new casualties and to create favorable conditions for a truly comprehensive national dialogue on a constitutional reform in Ukraine. … They marked the importance of round-table discussions with understanding that it was important to ensure due representation of the interests of the country’s southeast.”

The ministry quoted Russia’s top-diplomat as stressing that “Kiev must stop using the armed forces against participants in protests”, as stipulated in the Geneva agreement of April 17.

Lavrov reportedly also stressed the role of a special OSCE monitoring mission in promoting agreements at scenes of confrontation and other practical de-escalation measures.

Lavrov also urged for an “independent and unbiased investigation of the massacre in Odessa and other acts of violence against civilians, committed in Ukraine over recent months.

On Saturday, Lavrov demanded an immediate end to Kiev’s ongoing combat operations in Ukraine. Sunday, one week ago, the German Chancellor Angela Merkel, together with French President Francois Hollande, demanded that Kiev immediately ends its use of military forces in southeastern Ukraine.

Merkel stressed that the use of military forces against Ukrainian citizens is unacceptable and permissible only, to protect infrastructure and human lives.

Even then, Merkel added, the use of any military force “must be proportional”.

Russia and Germany have now, for more than one week called on Kiev to halt military operations and to immediately begin a dialog with representatives of all of Ukraine’s regions.

Germany, in addition, also demanded that Kiev prepares proposals for constitutional change, legal change and an amnesty.

All of the Russian, German and French demands have been ignored by Kiev.

The United States and the UK, for their part, support Kiev in it’s alleged “anti-terrorism operation”.

Several analysts and experts on the conflict stressed that both the US and UK promote a long-term destabilization of Ukraine so as to counter the further integration of continental European and Russian market economies to maintain the primacy of the US/UK Atlantic axis over Europe.

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http://nsnbc.me/2014/05/18/german-and-russian-foreign-minister-discuss-de-escalation-in-ukraine/

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