Zelensky arrived in Donetsk region

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KIEV, September 26. / TASS /. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy began a working trip to Donetsk region on Saturday. This was reported by the press service of his office.

"The head of state will hold a meeting to discuss the work of the Trilateral Contact Group (a contact group for resolving the situation in eastern Ukraine – TASS note)," the message says.

Zelenskiy also plans to visit servicemen on the contact line in Donbass.

The peaceful settlement of the conflict in Donbass is based on the Minsk agreements, which imply not only a ceasefire, withdrawal of weapons, amnesty, renewal of economic ties, but also a deep constitutional reform in Ukraine, which should result in the decentralization of power, taking into account the special status of certain areas of Donetsk and Luhansk regions.

Kiev has recently repeatedly announced its desire to revise the Minsk agreements, including with regard to the return to Ukraine of control over the border and the holding of local elections. In turn, the republics of Donbass spoke out sharply against this approach of Kiev. According to Russian President Vladimir Putin, the revision of these documents may lead the situation with the settlement of the conflict in eastern Ukraine to a dead end.

Contact group work

Currently, the negotiations of the contact group on Donbass are actually blocked. This is due to the adoption by the Rada on July 15 of a resolution on the appointment of local elections in Ukraine for October 25, which does not provide for the expression of will in the territories of Donbass not controlled by Kiev. The fourth paragraph of the document, where the conditions for voting in uncontrolled areas are called the preliminary transfer to the Ukrainian side of control over a section of the border with Russia, the withdrawal of all "illegal armed formations" and equipment, the restoration of the "constitutional order and law and order" in the region in accordance with the current laws of Ukraine, caused discussions among negotiators. These conditions contradict the provisions of the Minsk agreements themselves, which imply that Ukraine gains control over the border only after local elections have been held in the region and the special status of Donbass has been legislatively consolidated.

Following the results of the last meeting of the contact group, Russian plenipotentiary Boris Gryzlov stressed that the document grossly violated the Minsk and Normandy agreements and the UN Security Council resolution. Representatives of the Donetsk People's Republic said that until this resolution of the Verkhovna Rada on elections is brought in line with the Minsk agreements, the group's work will remain blocked. The speaker of the Verkhovna Rada, Dmitry Razumkov, said that it was impossible to change this resolution, as this could call into question the legitimacy of local elections throughout Ukraine.

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