Russia expects that Ukraine will not use the Debaltseve situation to disrupt the peace process and constitutional reform in Ukraine, Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov told journalists, reports Interfax Ukraine, February 18.
“We are hoping that the process will continue and that the current situation in Debaltseve will not be used to find an excuse for derailing it. Such attempts were made in the past regarding previous agreements. We do not want a recurrence,” Lavrov said.
According to Lavrov, the recent Minsk agreements on resolving the conflict in Ukraine presumes in particular that Ukraine will begin constitutional reform with the participation of the DNR and LNR groups in sections concerning the coordination of their status in the country.
Lavrov has called for a ceasefire in Debaltseve, which he says has been violated in order to change the status quo that existed at midnight on February 15.
He said he hoped “common sense will prevail” since “it is necessary to save the lives of those remaining in the encirclement.”
During the Minsk negotiations, Russia’s President Vladimir Putin declared that Ukrainian troops were encircled in Debaltseve and had to lay down their arms. It was clear at that time that Russia and her proxies were interested in Debaltseve as a transportation hub.