“Local Autonomy”: France and Germany Are Preparing Their Proposals for Donbass

Translated by Ollie Richardson & Angelina Siard



France and Germany during a meeting of Foreign Ministers of the “Normandy Four” in Berlin intend on June 11th to present their initiatives for the settlement of the situation in the east of Ukraine. This was reported by the official representative of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of France on June 8th, confirming the participation of the Minister of Europe and Foreign Affairs Jean-Yves Le Drian in a meeting.

“As President Macron emphasized on May 24 during his visit to Saint Petersburg, the coming months will be decisive. Without concrete advances on the political, humanitarian, economic, and security fronts, it’s the credibility of the current peace process that is at stake. Everything must be done to end a situation marked by hundreds of cease-fire violations each day, dozens of deaths each month, the use of heavy weaponry, and a deteriorated humanitarian situation for residents of the conflict zone,” it is said in the statement.

In this regard France and Germany, the representative of the French foreign policy department noted, will “make proposals to Ukraine and Russia in each of these areas in order to build momentum for the full implementation of the Minsk Agreements”. As was emphasised in the statement, these proposals can also promote “the return of Ukraine’s sovereignty over territories currently under separatist control within a framework of local autonomy”.

Important contacts

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of France also noted that Jean-Yves Le Drian, “attending his first ministerial meeting in the Normandy format, as is his German counterpart [Heiko Maas] will express France and Germany’s hope that the parties [to the conflict] will swiftly recommit to the implementation of the Minsk agreements of September 2014 and February 2015”.

The French diplomatic department in this regard also reminds that “the ministerial meeting in Berlin follows recent contacts between the heads of state and government of the Normandy format countries: a meeting between the French President and the German Chancellor with the Ukrainian President in Aachen on May 10, and trips to Russia by Madam Merkel and the French President on May 18 and May 24-25 respectively,” it is said in the statement of the official representative of the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

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The ministerial meeting will take place in the Normandy format in the Borsig villa and will begin at 18:30 (19:30 Moscow time). The last time of the Foreign Ministers of the “four” met was in February, 2017.

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