Nikonorova urges Kiev to hold video conference over prisoner exchange on Dec 23

December 19, 2019 18:34

Donetsk, Dec 19 – DAN. A video conference over arrangements for a prisoner swap between the Donetsk People’s Republic and Ukraine might take place on December 23, DPR envoy to the Minsk talks, the Republic’s Foreign Minister Natalia Nikonorova said on Thursday.

“We’re calling upon Kiev not to pursue self-promotion and take part in a video conference while completing concrete preliminary arrangements, in the first place the legal clearance of the detainees,” Nikonorova said in a statement received by the Donetsk News Agency.  “In this connection, a video conference on Monday will be more expedient because we hope that by that time, the Ukrainian representatives will have done their homework and prepared for the constructive coordination of an exchange mechanism.”

The DPR envoy said that the Thursday statement by Kiev’s Contact Group representative Leonid Kuchma about the necessity to hold a video conference on December 20 was a clear publicity move because at the Minsk talks on Wednesday Ukraine showed that it was not ready for prisoner exchange.

“Holding a video conference on Friday does not appear practical or effective because it is unlikely that the Ukrainian representatives have made serious decisions on this track in a day,” the diplomat said.

On Wednesday, the Belarussian capital hosted the latest round of Donbass peace tasks. Reports said that Ukraine had failed the arrangements for the prisoner exchange with the Donbass Republics agreed at the “Normandy Four” meeting on December 9.*jk