Q. – You were in Berlin on Wednesday with your Russian, German and Ukrainian counterparts. How can a lasting ceasefire and a political solution be secured, given Russia’s intransigent attitude?
THE MINISTER – France’s role, along with Germany – and we’ve been working on it since the meeting in Normandy on 6 June – is to achieve a de-escalation. The most urgent thing is to restore the ceasefire. In order to last, it must be respected by all parties. That’s what was lacking last time. Both the Russians and the Ukrainians are blowing hot and cold.
Having said that, Russia has made gestures – and they must be taken into account –, proposing that Ukrainians and the OSCE should come and observe the situation at specific points on its borders with Ukraine. But it’s necessary to go further in order to avoid illegal transfers of weapons and even fighters.
As for the political solution, it requires dialogue in the framework of the Ukraine-Russia contact group, with the OSCE’s support. That’s what we agreed on in Berlin this week. In Kiev it also requires, for example, the constitution to be modified to address the aspirations of Ukrainian society as a whole. (…)./.