Russia Says Many Want Ukraine Peace Deal to Fail

Russia Says Many Want Ukraine Peace Deal to FailRussia Says Many Want Ukraine Peace Deal to Fail

Russia is concerned that many people in Kiev and outside Ukraine want a peace deal in the east of the country to fail, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Wednesday.

“A lot now depends on an honest, objective, unbiased approach by the observers who must record what is happening on the ground,” Lavrov said at talks with Gerard Larcher, chairman of France’s senate. “So that we can all resist the attempts to present the Minsk agreements as having already failed.”

He added that “There are many people outside Ukraine and in Kiev who want them derailed,” Reuters reported.

Lavrov called for the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) to observe the withdrawal of heavy weapons in eastern Ukraine under the February 12 peace deal agreed in the Belarusian capital Minsk.

Pro-Russian separatists say they have begun the withdrawal but Kiev says its forces will not do so until fighting stops and that the rebels are using the cover of the truce to reinforce for another advance.

Meanwhile, US Secretary of State John Kerry confirmed that he will be meeting with Lavrov on Saturday to discuss a variety of issues.

“On Saturday [February 28] I will have meetings with Foreign Minister Lavrov on Syria, and on other things,” Kerry told the Senate Committee on Tuesday.

Both Lavrov and Kerry are also expected to attend the 28th session of the United Nations Council on Human Rights in Geneva beginning on Monday, March 2.