Lavrov names two conditions for Russia’s participation at Normandy four summit

The Foreign Minister of Russia, Sergey Lavrov excludes the possibility for Russia's participation in the Normandy four summit prior to withdrawal of armed forces and assets near Stanytsia Luhanska and granting "special status" to the Donbas, reports Interfax-Ukraine.

"We are all for the active work of the Normandy four but not when these meetings end with agreements that are not being implemented," said Lavrov.

The head of the Russian Foreign Ministry recalled that there was no withdrawal of forces from the Stanytsia Luhanska called for by the participants of the Normandy four after the Paris 2015 and Berlin 2016 summits. The sides took care only of their own positions and weapons in the Petrovsky district of Donetsk region and Zolote in the Luhansk region.

Lavrov also accused the Ukrainian side of disrupting the withdrawal of forces due to the condition of observing the seven-day regime of "silence".

Lavrov’s second condition, which must be met before calling the Normandy four summit is the implementation of the so-called "Steinmeier formula", which enforces the law on the "special status" of the Donbas.

"Therefore, we asked our colleagues who want to re-gather the Normandy four on the highest level, at least out of respect for the heads of state, arrange it only after the previous agreements have been implemented," he said.

Two weeks earlier, Lavrov also stated that he saw no point in holding the Normandy four summit, while the military forces and facilities near the Stanytsia Luhanska were not being withdrawn from the areas of the conflict in Donbas.

The Normandy four consist of Germany, France, Ukraine and Russia.

  Russia, Sergey Lavrov, Luhansk, Normandy Four