A key condition for lasting peace in Ukraine is the full implementation of the Minsk agreements.
“We need a long-term political solution to achieve a lasting peace in the eastern Ukraine. This will require political will by all parties to the conflict. The full implementation of the Minsk agreements is a key condition in this regard,” High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell said at the 27th OSCE Ministerial Council.
As noted, the ceasefire which is “largely" holding since the end of July marks positive developments in Ukraine. The ceasefire spares lives “and this matters greatly to the European Union,” the High Representative assured.
Borrell assessed the work of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission as “invaluable” and reminded that the European Union Member States contribute to more than two thirds in personnel and budget of the Mission.
He also reminded that Crimea and the city of Sevastopol are still illegally annexed by Russia and reiterated the European Union’s unwavering support to Ukraine's independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity.
Borrel also focused on other conflicts. In particular, speaking about the situation in Belarus, he urged the country's authorities to accept the mediation proposal of the Albanian Chairmanship-in-Office. Regarding Nagorno-Karabakh, the diplomat expressed hope that the recent ceasefire would be the first step towards a comprehensive settlement, noting that a ceasefire is not peace “as we Europeans know all too well.”
The European Union reiterates its full support to the only established format: the OSCE Minsk Group and stands ready to contribute to these efforts and to the implementation of agreements leading to sustainable peace and prosperous development of the entire South Caucasus region, Borrell added.
The European Union, the High Representative noted, continues to believe that it is vital to modernise the OSCE politico-military toolbox.
“The European security architecture can be defended only by respecting international law and OSCE principles and commitments, namely the Helsinki Final Act and the Paris Charter,” Borrell summed up.
On Thursday, December 3, the two-day 27th OSCE Ministerial Council began via video conference format.
About 40 foreign ministers of the OSCE participating states are taking part in the main event of the Albania OSCE Chairmanship. Ukraine is represented by Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba.
During the online meetings, the ministers will summarize the organization's activities in 2020 and review the security situation in the Euro-Atlantic and Eurasian regions.
Russian aggression against Ukraine is expected to be one of the main topics of the meetings.