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German Ambassador’s statement about elections in Donbas will not harm bilateral relations – Pavlo Klimkin

Kyiv, February 09, 2017.

The statement of German Ambassador to Ukraine about possibility to hold elections in Donbas will not harm Ukrainian-German relations, said Pavlo Klimkin, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine at a press briefing at Ukraine Crisis Media Center.  “I see the problem not only in the content of that statement but also the way how it was said – the comparisons, the tone. However, I would like to emphasize: these things that are going on – and this is not a pro-forma statement of the Minister – will have no any impact on Ukrainian-German relations,” stressed Pavlo Klimkin.

In his comment about the incident with the fragment of Berlin wall in front of the Embassy being painted Pavlo Klimkin said that he does not blame people for strong feelings incited by the statement, but “in a political context, it was excessive” and “sometimes it is better to suppress emotions and act via political means.”

“This reaction […] that in many cases was too strong, demonstrates how we see the way to implement the Minsk agreements and what our way to peace should look like. Of course, I have already explained this to our German friends […] and I hope that in the context of our friendship with Germany the matter is closed,” said Pavlo Klimkin.

Scandal around Roman Zozulya was a planned provocation

According to Pavlo Klimkin, the scandal around Ukrainian football player Roman Zozulya is “a conscious provocation”. “Things that had been organized there were a conscious provocation. A number of leftist ultras were cynically used in someone’s game. The general opinion in Spanish football community is absolutely different. […] Our Ambassador had very positive relations with directors of football clubs and wіth fans of several clubs. When I’m telling that these several ultras were manipulated, it is not just words. We understand this due to the contacts of Anatoliy Scherba and our diplomats in Spain,” he stressed.

The Minister noted that now Ukrainian and Spanish diplomats work together to solve this problem and that the MFA will ensure “both political and moral support” to Roman Zozulya.

Negotiations in “Normand” format may take place on February 17th

Consultations with German and French diplomats regarding the date and the format of the meeting still go on. “We consider a number of options. One of them is February 17th, within the G20. It would be good for us, as we would have opportunity to tell other Ministers of the G20 what Russia is actually doing in Donbas,” said Pavlo Klimkin.

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