The ban on broadcasting RT television channel Sputnik, in Latvia and Lithuania is a direct violation of the obligations of media freedom undertaken by the Baltic states. The Federation Council of Russia believes that such actions of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia violate the principles of freedom of speech and unhindered dissemination of information, which are fundamental norms of the OSCE and the Council of Europe.
Kyiv has not done anything to implement the Minsk procedures and the Paris Agreements … to settle the situation in Donbas.
Ukraine has never claimed that it does not want to implement the Minsk agreements. The implementation of the agreements remains one of the key priorities of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. After the COVID-19 pandemic began, the Ukrainian side proposed to hold the negotiations conducted by the Trilateral Contact Group in a video format.
Over the last 12 months, Ukraine has made serious steps to resolve the conflict in Donbas peacefully. Ukraine initiated a Normandy Four meeting that was held on December 9, 2019. Ukraine agreed that a full and comprehensive ceasefire is necessary. The parties of the Normandy Summit also agreed to release captives on the principle "all for all" by December 2019. Three prisoner exchanges have been conducted, with the last one taking place during the COVID-19 lockdown. The law on special order of local self-government in certain areas of Donbas was extended for another year. A disengagement of troops was achieved in Zolote, Petrivske, and Stanytsia Luhanska. Ukraine also rebuilt a bridge in Stanytsia Luhanska that was destroyed by the pro-Russian militants in March 2015.
Moreover, the negotiations in the Trilateral Contact Group (TCG) have not been suspended due to the coronavirus crisis. The meetings were held in a video format.
Ukraine also increased the number of its representatives in the TCG in order to intensify the work of the latter. The Head of the Office of the President of Ukraine Andriy Yermak explained that "with this step, Ukraine once again demonstrates great commitment to implement the Minsk agreements. Second, we demonstrate that we want to move forward and not waste time."
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