A settlement to the conflict in eastern Ukraine is a precondition of the EU-Russia strategic relations resumption. German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas stated this from the floor of the European Parliament during his presentation of the priorities of Berlin’s presidency in the EU Council.

According to him, the policy towards Ukraine and Russia will be a priority for Germany during its presidency of the Council of the European Union, which started on 1 July and lasts until the end of the year.

Maas also noted that there was a “minimal consensus” within the EU which calls for the sanctions on Russia gradual extension.

According to the Federal Minister for Foreign Affairs, “Normandy talks” on the Minsk and the Paris summit agreements implementation progress is moving slowly now.

Maas reminds us that a complete ceasefire in Donbas has not been reached. Similarly, the Paris summit agreements on the opposing forces disengagement have not been implemented.

Meanwhile, the Foreign Minister did not reply the question whether it is worth imposing additional sanctions against Russia for its actions in Syria, similar to those which are currently taken for Ukraine’s destabilisation by the Kremlin.

Bohdan Marusyak

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