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14 Jul 2017

Belarus working on new ideas to bring peace to Ukraine

MINSK, 14 July (BelTA) – Belarus is working on new ideas with a view to reestablishing peace in Ukraine, BelTA learned from the latest interview Belarusian Minister of Foreign Affairs Vladimir Makei gave to the Spanish daily El Pais.

Vladimir Makei said: “When two brothers are quarrelling, the third one should get them to reconcile. We couldn’t stay out of it.” Vladimir Makei is quoted as saying that Belarus is preparing new ideas in order to give a new impulse to the agreements reached in Minsk, the main venue for negotiating the resolution of the situation in Ukraine’s east with assistance of Germany, France, Ukraine, and Russia under the OSCE aegis.

The Belarusian minister of foreign affairs said: “We are very interested in continuing the peace process in Ukraine in a more dynamic manner.” Vladimir Makei explained that apart from economic losses the aggravated conflict entails other kinds of danger such as the possible smuggling of weapons and illegal migration.

“The Belarus president has put forward a number of initiatives but not all of them have been backed,” said the minister. Some confidential proposals have received no answer whatsoever, specified Vladimir Makei while referring to the proposals Alexander Lukashenko sent to the European Union with assistance of Donald Tusk, who was the prime minister of Poland at that time.

Vladimir Makei is quoted as saying that Belarus and its leadership were ready for more decisive actions to help resolve the crisis in Ukraine. Later on Alexander Lukashenko suggested that Belarus could take care of enforcing border control at the Russian-Ukrainian border. “The idea was not accepted by either of the sides,” admitted Vladimir Makei. According to the source, Belarus could enforce border control on its own or with assistance of other parties.

According to the source, the Minsk agreements, which were signed on 12 February 2015, seemed acceptable for everyone but after the parties returned to their own countries, disagreements began and it is now difficult to say who is right. An objective mechanism is needed for precisely controlling the observance of all the agreements, which have been reached or can be reached, and for taking measures to address problems if they are encountered. Another meeting needs to be arranged for that. The location is not important. Other entities like the European Union and the USA could take part in it. It is necessary to get all the parties to the conflict to strike a solid deal and make sure they stick to it, BelTA has been told. Vladimir Makei said he was reluctant to talk about details but he assured that Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko will discuss ways to resolve the Ukrainian crisis with his Ukrainian counterpart Petro Poroshenko in Kiev soon.

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