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Former first deputy head of Russian Presidential Administration admits he did not plan for Minsk agreements to be fulfilled

Thursday, 16 February 2023, 11:02
Former first deputy head of Russian Presidential Administration admits he did not plan for Minsk agreements to be fulfilled

Vladislav Surkov, former First Deputy Head of the Russian Presidential Administration, has said that he worked on the Minsk agreements based on the idea that they should not be fulfilled.

Source: Vedomosti, with reference to Surkov's interview with Alexey Chesnakov, Director of the Centre for Current Policy (CCP); RBC, citing Dmitry Peskov, press secretary of the President of the Russian Federation

Details: Surkov answered "yes" to the relevant question about the Minsk agreements.

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He also affirmatively replied that he considers the actions of the Russian army in Ukraine to be effective and expressed hope for the normalisation of relations between Russia and the West in the near future.

Dmitry Peskov, press secretary of the President of the Russian Federation, stated that the main task of the Minsk Agreements was "to force Kyiv to fulfil its obligations".

Quote from Peskov: "Accordingly, the main task was to force Kyiv to fulfil its obligations. Now we understand that no one was going to do this. Therefore, it is better to clarify in detail with Surkov what he meant."

Background:

  • In 2020, the former assistant to the President of Russia, Vladyslav Surkov, stated in his article "there is no Ukraine, there is Ukrainianness" and that "Donbas does not deserve such humiliation" as returning to Ukraine.
  • In December 2022, German ex-Chancellor Angela Merkel said that the Minsk agreements signed in 2014 gave Ukraine "precious time" to become stronger; the results of which, according to her, can be observed now. She emphasised that Ukraine of 2014-2015 is not today's Ukraine.
  • In his recent addresses, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said that he believes that the Minsk agreements were, from the outset, initiated by the West as a concession to Russia, and that it was impossible to fulfil them without Ukraine ceding territory.
  • The first Minsk agreements were concluded in 2014 by a tripartite contact group, which included representatives of Russia, Ukraine and the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe. The conclusion of the Minsk agreements was preceded by consultations in the Normandy format (Ukraine, Russia, France, Germany).
  • On 22 February 2022, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, President of Ukraine, stated that Russia's recognition of the "independence" of temporarily occupied areas of Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts means its unilateral withdrawal from the Minsk agreements.

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