In Digest, Ukraine

TASS, March 17, 2015

MOSCOW, The Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics (DPR and LPR) do not recognize amendments to Ukrainian law on Donbas special status that have not been coordinated with them, DPR envoy to the Minsk ceasefire contact group, Denis Pushilin, said on Tuesday.

Photo by urab Dzhavakhadze, ITAR-TASS

Photo by urab Dzhavakhadze, ITAR-TASS

“Uncoordinated amendments to the law made by [Ukrainian President Petro] Poroshenko are not recognized by the republics [DPR and LPR],” the Donetsk News Agency quoted Pushilin as saying.

“From our point of view, they [amendments] are legally meaningless and politically void,” the envoy stressed. “And they directly violate the spirit and word of the Minsk ceasefire agreements. The Minsk process is practically interrupted as its basis – the law on special status – is in fact cancelled by Poroshenko’s amendments. He [Poroshenko] does not respect the people of Donbas, he does not want peace,” Pushilin said.

DPR and LPR authorities called on March 16 on Ukraine’s Verkhovna Rada to approve the draft law on areas with special status in Donbas, DPR and LPR envoys in the Contact Group on Ukrainian peaceful settlement Denis Pushilin and Vladislav Deinego said.

“We express hope that the draft law will be approved by Ukraine’s Verkhovna Rada as soon as possible,” the Donetsk News Agency cited Pushilin and Deinego as saying. “’The party of war’ should not be able to use the adoption of the law for revising the ‘Law on Special Status’ and making amendments [to the law] that have not been coordinated with Donbass representatives,” the envoys added.

“We stress that adopting the draft law without distorting the meaning of the Minsk package of measures will facilitate the process of peaceful settlement and create preconditions for mutual trust,” Pushilin and Deinego said.

Law on Donbas special status

According to Article 4 of the package of measures on the implementation of the Minsk agreements [February 11/12, 2015], a law on areas in Donbass with special political and economic status must be adopted by the Verkovna Rada by March 14. However, the law has still not been adopted.

Heads of DPR and LPR Alexander Zakharchenko and Igor Plotnitsky called on German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Fracois Hollande to exert pressure on the Ukrainian leadership so that Kiev complies with the Minsk agreements.

Overnight to Monday [March 16], Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko submitted a law on Donbas special status to the Verkhovna Rada. According to the document, the special status in Donbas will be implemented only after local elections. According to the official website of the Ukrainian parliament, Rada’s next plenary session will take place on March 17.


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