To hold Normandy format negotiations would be sacrilege after the assassination of the head of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic, Alexander Zakharchenko, said Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov during the TV show Bolshaya Igra (“Big Game”) on Channel One, RIA Novosti reports .
“We don’t refuse the Normandy format but now it will be just inappropriate and sacrilege to gather for such a meeting, especially when neither Berlin nor Paris have expressed their condemnation of this political assassination that occurred in Donetsk,” said Lavrov.
According to the minister, the Minsk agreements established a fixed contact group whose meetings include representatives from Kyiv and the self-proclaimed LPR and DPR representatives in the presence of Russia and the OSCE. Lavrov said that he considers this format to be the only one that can yield results.
Normandy Four is a diplomatic group of high-ranking representatives of Germany, Russia, Ukraine and France that convene to settle the situation in eastern Ukraine. The first meeting of the heads of the four states took place on June 6, 2014 at the Chateau de Benouville in Normandy during the celebration of the 70th anniversary of the Allies’ landing.