DPR foreign ministry opposed to new Steinmeier formula compromise

Donetsk, Sep 20 – DAN. New Steinmeier formula concessions on the part of the Donbass Republics are inadmissible, the Donetsk People’s Republic envoy to the Minsk talks Natalia Nikonorova said on Friday.

Earlier, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Vadim Pristaiko said in an interview to the newspaper Yevropeiskaya Pravda that Kiev was unable to sign the text of the Steinmeier formula on September 18 due to a technical misunderstanding in the contact group. Ukrainian representative Leonid Kuchma had comments, so “something might be added to the text or taken out,” Pristaiko said.

“Ukraine’s practice to deny what it coordinated before causes bewilderment,” Nikonorova said. “We are talking about the Steinmeier formula which was twice approved at “Normandy Four” summits and repeatedly confirmed at meetings between advisors to the heads of the Minsk Agreements guarantor states, including by Ukrainian representative Andrey Yermak. Nevertheless, it doesn’t deter Kiev from stating the intention to change the text of the mechanism while ignoring the directive from its own Normandy Four representative to coordinate the approved formula.”

This raises the issue of Yermak’s authority as his instructions are ignored by his colleagues in the person of Kuchma, she said.

“We wish to remind the Ukrainian leadership that the mechanism for enforcing the law on special status of Donbass, proposed by Mr Steinmeier, is a compromise arising from Kiev’s inability to implement the political articles of the Packages of Measures as they were set forth for the period stipulated in the documents. Therefore, calling upon the Donbass representatives to make additional concessions is inadmissible: we already agreed to a compromise and categorically insist that Ukraine implement it.

“The discussion of the Steinmeier formula by advisors to the “Normandy Four” leaders was a forced move due to the refusal of the Ukrainian representatives in the Contact Group to finalise the mechanism,” the DPR envoy said. “Consequently, since we have the directive to sign the finished text of the formula at the Minsk talks, Ukraine’s failure to sign it is an obvious and cynical violation of its own obligations.” *jk

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