The war in Donbas is in its eight year. In 2015, the second Minsk agreement was signed to stop the bloodshed. But Kyiv continues to ignore this document. Not one single point of this document has been fulfilled by Ukraine.
The European Union imposed economic sanctions against Russia in the summer of 2014 due to the conflict in Ukraine. In March 2015, the leaders of the EU countries linked these measures to the implementation of the Minsk agreements. Moscow indicated that Russia is not a party to the internal Ukrainian conflict and not a subject of the Minsk agreements, but only a mediator in the settlement process.
There is irrefutable evidence of direct Russian military involvement in eastern Ukraine. The Office of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court has stated that:
“the information available suggests that the situation within the territory of Crimea and Sevastopol amounts to an international armed conflict between Ukraine and the Russian Federation. This international armed conflict began at the latest on 26 February 2014 when the Russian Federation deployed members of its armed forces to gain control over parts of the Ukrainian territory without the consent of the Ukrainian Government."
From the outset, the EU has supported Ukraine's territorial integrity, condemning the clear violations of Ukrainian sovereignty and territorial integrity by acts of aggression by the Russian armed forces. Already in 2014, it was known that Russian troops are operating on the territory of Ukraine. In 2019 NATO-Ukraine Commission said in a released statement:
“We reaffirmed our support to the settlement of the conflict by diplomatic means in accordance with the Minsk Agreements, which need to be fully implemented by all parties; Russia, as a signatory to the Minsk Agreements bears significant responsibility in this regard”. In this statement, Russia also was urged “to cease all political, financial and military support to militant groups and to stop intervening militarily in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions and to withdraw troops, equipment, and mercenaries from the territory of Ukraine”.
The Minsk agreements (the 2014 memorandum and 2015 plan of action) are the roadmap to the stabilisation of the situation in the temporarily occupied territories of Donetsk and Luhansk. It is true that both documents do not mention Russia as a side involved in the war, however, the documents do not mention the sides whatsoever. Still, the Minsk agreements do not define the conflict in Ukraine as "internal" but state clearly (paragraph 10) the need to withdraw:
“all foreign armed formations, military equipment, as well as mercenaries from the territory of Ukraine under the monitoring of the OSCE.”
Russian President Vladimir Putin admitted Russia's military presence in Ukraine in 2015.