Ukraine not to make unacceptable compromises to end Donbas war: Foreign Minister

Ukrainian Foreign Minister Vadym Prystaiko

KYIV, Ukraine: The Ukrainian Foreign Minister Vadym Prystaiko has said that the Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has promised to end the war in Donbas as soon as possible without making any unacceptable compromises, the Ukrinform news agency reported.

“We are going to do it by the end of the year,” Vadym Prystaiko said after eight-hour talks held in the Normandy format at the level of political advisers in Berlin on September 2, 2019.

Vadym Prystaiko said that the meeting participants had discussed steps that would pave the way for the summit of the leaders of the Normandy Four Countries.

At the same time, according to Prystaiko, Kyiv is not going to resort to any unacceptable compromises, and all agreements will be presented to the public.

Prystaiko noted that if Ukraine had the opportunity to resolve this issue by force from the very beginning, this war would have been over and “we would not be at this stage now.” But Ukraine, as a responsible state, is still implementing these decisions that were made by the leaders in 2014, he added.

“We want to end this war, and President Zelensky explained several times that we cannot afford to stay in the current situation economically and financially for five more years. We are not going to lose a soldier every day,” Prystaiko said.

For his part, he reiterated what he had recently said to members of the Verkhovna Rada: “The war continues to severely restrain us. It kills our people. Some 14,000 people were killed and millions were left outside their homes. At least 20% of our potential and 7% of territory were stolen from us. We need to address this issue. This does not mean that we will solve it tomorrow. President Zelensky has given time to make final decisions. We are talking about the end of 2019.”

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If Ukraine fails to use the Normandy format, it will look for other options, the foreign minister said.