ST. PETERSBURG, June 10 (RIA Novosti) – Russia and its partners are convinced that dialogue and cessation of violence are vital for reconciliation in Ukraine regardless of how the sides interpret the Ukrainian crisis, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Tuesday.
"We are convinced – and, as I understand, our partners share this approach – that regardless of different interpretations of various events that took place during the Ukrainian crisis, today we need to concentrate on ceasing bloodshed unconditionally and immediately, stopping the use of force and launching a dialogue with the participation of all regions of Ukraine in order to agree on the future system of government," the Russian minister said.
Moscow believes Kiev’s refusal to hold talks with eastern Ukraine will drag the crisis ad infinitum. Meanwhile, Kiev is not seeking to de-escalate the situation in the east, Lavrov said.
Lavrov participated in the fourth trilateral meeting of the foreign ministers of Russia, Germany and Poland in St. Petersburg on Tuesday focusing on the crisis settlement in Ukraine.
The Luhansk and Donetsk People’s Republics declared themselves independent states following a May 11 referendum and soon started to form governments and law enforcement agencies.
Kiev has refused to recognize the legitimacy of any of these decisions and is continuing military operations that were launched in mid-April against the independence supporters in the regions.
Moscow has repeatedly condemned Kiev authorities for what it calls "a punitive operation" and stressed the need for the de-escalation of the Ukrainian crisis.