MOSCOW, 11 Mar – RIA Novosti. The Minister for the Temporarily Occupied Territories of Ukraine Aleksey Reznikov said about Russia's “main mistake” regarding the conflict in Donbass.
According to him, the aggravation of the situation in the region will lead to toughening of restrictive measures against Moscow by Europe, the United States and Canada, as a result of which Russia's “sanctions immunity” may be undermined.
The minister also noted that he does not believe in a real threat to Ukraine from Russia, since the aggravation of relations is unprofitable for Moscow. According to Reznikov, Russians are most often guided by pragmatic considerations, although “they are often mistaken.”
“Their main mistake is that they never learned to understand Ukraine,” he said in an interview with the Observer.
The conflict in Donbass has been going on for seven years, about 13 thousand people have become victims. The settlement is being discussed at the meetings of the contact group in Minsk. The parties have adopted several documents aimed at resolving the conflict, but shootings continue. So, from July 27 in Donbass, additional measures came into force to ensure a ceasefire. They imply a complete ban on firing, the deployment of weapons in and near settlements, as well as offensive and reconnaissance and sabotage operations. In addition, there is disciplinary liability for violation of the ceasefire.
However, in February the situation began to deteriorate: there was an attempt on the life of the battalion commander of the People's Militia of the DPR, Ukrainian security forces fired mortars at Gorlovka and the outskirts of Donetsk, and the fighting intensified. The self-proclaimed republics believe that a large-scale offensive is being prepared in Kiev, pulling new forces to the line of contact. The Ukrainian capital partially confirms this information: on February 22, the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Ruslan Khomchak said that the army was working on a scenario of assaults in urban settings.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has repeatedly called on Ukraine to stop sabotaging the implementation of the Minsk agreements and not to shy away from direct dialogue with Donetsk and Lugansk.