During the Trilateral Contact Group meeting on Wednesday, 25 November, no progress was made in developing a draft action plan in accordance with the Minsk Agreements, and the parties need to show a willingness to compromise.

This is underscored in the statement made by Ambassador Heidi Grau, Special Representative of the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office in Ukraine and in the Trilateral Contact Group (TCG), after the regular meetings of the TCG ‎and its Working Groups held through video conferencing.

“Owing to divergent views, the Political Working Group was unable to advance in developing a draft action plan in full compliance with the Minsk Agreements. Progress on this issue requires constructiveness and willingness to compromise,” the OSCE Special Representative said.

At the same time, Representative of Donetsk region in the TCG Serhiy Harmash noted that Ukraine took a tough stance toward Russia and the OSCE in these talks and demanded that Russia comply with its obligations as a signatory to the Normandy format agreements.

“Probably for the first time, Ukraine has taken a tough stance toward Russia, and especially for the first time toward the OSCE, which, in my opinion, becomes increasingly pro-Russian and less interested in resolving the conflict as a mediator. Previously, it was me who mainly paid attention to this fact, and the delegation was very restrained in this matter for diplomatic reasons… Today, Leonid Kravchuk strongly demanded, speaking to Gryzlov, that Russia must present its position as a TCG member and a signatory to the Normandy format agreements signed at the Paris Summit. He demanded that Russia must present its position on the settlement, what they call a “peace plan.” Ukraine has presented its document; let Russia present its document now. Russia refuses to do so, trying primarily to involve the representatives of the occupied Donbas. They push a plan of the occupied Donbas representatives, who are not TCG members and do not bear responsibility for these plans. The OSCE does not want to notice this fact,” Harmash said.

However, he assumed that, despite the tense negotiations, the next TCG meeting would take place according to a schedule.

Bohdan Marusyak

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