Didier Reynders about the crisis in Ukraine
The new EU sanctions against Russia, which come into force today, are the consequences of the behaviour of the Russian authorities in the Ukrainian question. These measures will have an impact on the development of the Russian economy and is a serious signal for the leadership in Moscow. However, the EU is ready to remove the sanctions when Russia starts to contribute actively and unambiguously to a solution of the Ukrainian crisis.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Didier Reynders believes that Russia can bring back peace by putting pressure on the rebels in the east of Ukraine and by discontinuing the supply of arms to the rebels so that Ukraine can focus on the development of the country on its entire territory, on the basis of the Poroshenko Peace Plan.
The Minister regrets that the fighting persists. He is concerned about the growing number of civilian casualties. All parties must abide by a cease-fire.
Didier Reynders insists that a genuine dialogue between the EU and Russia, with Ukraine, is initiated so that a lasting solution to the conflict can be found. Such a dialogue should be accompanied by concrete actions on the ground that build confidence and contribute to peace.
As requested by resolution 2166 (2014) of the Security Council of the UN, the Minister also stresses that free access to the crash site of flight MH17 must be granted so that the international commission of inquiry can carry out its work. It is more than time that shed light on this tragedy in an objective manner. The tragedy is as a result of the crisis in Ukraine and has already cost the lives of so many civilian casualties and caused much suffering among their relatives.
Link to the EU Press Release: http://www.consilium.europa.eu/uedocs/cms_Data/docs/pressdata/EN/foraff/144205.pdf