Negotiations on the situation in the Donbas intensified

Diplomatic contacts on the Ukrainian question intensified for last month.
Dec. 15, 2015 US Secretary of State John Kerry paid a visit to Moscow, where he held talks with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov. Kerry was trying to get an audience with Putin, but the Russian president chose to take part in the talks together with the Minister of Foreign Affairs.
Shortly afterwards, Russia has replaced its representative at the negotiations in Minsk, where the fate of Donbass is discussed. Boris Gryzlov became the new representative. January 11 before the resumption of talks in Minsk Gryzlov paid a visit to Kiev. Senior Russian officials have not made similar trips more than a year. Ukrainian nationalists were furious, many hawks calling for the continuation of the war in Donbas, publicly outraged, why the Ukrainian army did not shoot down Gryzlov’s plane. In Kiev, Gryzlov held talks with President of Ukraine Poroshenko and his entourage. Ukrainian sources claim that an agreement was reached on the procedure for the exchange of prisoners between Kiev and the rebels.
January 13 Barack Obama and Vladimir Putin held telephone talks. It is known that the two presidents discussed the situation in Ukraine.
Finally, on January 15, Russian president’s assistant Vladislav Surkov and Deputy of the US Secretary of State Victoria Nuland met near Kaliningrad and discussed the Ukrainian question. State Department spokesman John Kirby said that the meeting was held as a continuation of contacts between Secretary John Kerry and Russian President Vladimir Putin and Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, December 15, 2015. The aim of the meeting was to discuss the situation in Ukraine and the full implementation of the Minsk Agreement. Kirby called the talks constructive. A similar opinion was expressed by Surkov. The parties agreed to submit for consideration of the Normand four some questions relating to the constitutional reform in Ukraine, security and elections in Donbas.

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