Donetsk, Apr 14 – DAN. Public representatives from the Republics and Ukraine will no longer take part in the Contact Group meetings, said DPR Foreign Minister Natalia Nikonorova.

"Today a decision was announced, which we hope will unblock the discussion on the political track.  The decision is that only official representatives of the sides will be taking part in the political subgroup of the Contact Group. Public representatives will not be participating."

Nikonorova emphasized that the decision was taken with the assistance of the OSCE.

"The OSCE pressured the Ukrainian side into agreeing with one of our alternative suggestions: return to the format that existed for several years before Kiev's provocations, so that we find a way out of the deadlock," she explained.

Kiev suggested to include public representatives into the peace talks in December 2019. The Republics dismissed the idea as "another absurd idea", but later Ukraine amended its proposal, and limited the changes to adding two notorious journalists to its delegation.

In response, the Republics included its public activists, though Kiev refused to collaborate and blocked the political subgroup talks. *ot