US Special Rep to Ukrainian negotiations Kurt Volker: 'The status quo is not good for anybody'

2017/8/30 12:46:16

In a DW interview, Kurt Volker [pictured] pledges that Washington will not strike a separate deal with Moscow over the heads of Europeans and Ukrainians - but says it is good that all agree the current situation must improve.

 


By Dmytro Kaniewski for Deutsche Welle, Aug 29, 2017

 

DW: Ambassador Volker, your recent appointment was seen by many as a sign of the U.S. administration's desire to facilitate its role and involvement in finding a political accommodation in the Ukrainian crisis. Do you believe that the European initiative, the Minsk accords, so far did not deliver?

 

Kurt Volker: Right now all we have is an agreement and a framework supposed to lead to the restoration of Ukraine's international border. It's supposed to have the withdrawal of all foreign forces, it's supposed to have a ceasefire. It's supposed to have a political process underway as well. None of those things are really in place.

 

What I would say is that the Minsk agreement is not working today in the sense that it hasn't produced the peace and the restoration of Ukraine's territory, which is the goal. At the same time, it plays a very important role in that it is a vehicle by which Russia, as recently as just a few weeks ago, reaffirmed its support for Ukraine's territorial integrity and it is also the basis on which sanctions are kept in place. So until Russia implements the Minsk agreements forward - sanctions remain. So it serves a purpose there. Ultimately, part of the reason that I've been asked to get involved with this issue by Secretary [of State Rex] Tillerson is to see if we can increase the political will to actually execute. Right now, we are just going in circles.

 

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