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13:37 25 Aug 2021

Russian delegation disrupts TCG subgroup's work, Ukrainian delegation says

Russia is deliberately disrupting the work of the humanitarian subgroup of the Trilateral Contact Group on Donbas.

The press service of the Ukrainian delegation in the TCG announced this on Facebook, Rubryka reports.

The Russians have announced the involvement of Maia Pirohova, convicted for terrorism in Ukraine, in the talks.

"Less than a day before the meeting, the Russian delegation made a technical announcement about the involvement of a citizen of Ukraine Maia Yurievna Pirohova, convicted for terrorism in Ukraine, in a humanitarian subgroup of the TCG. The Ukrainian delegation sees this as a conscious attempt to disrupt consultations, especially given the previous experience of the Russian delegation blocking the work of a political subgroup in this way," the message reads.

The Ukrainian delegation restated that they didn't consult with persons convicted of terrorism. The press service noted that in this way the Russian delegation was trying to shift its responsibility for the consistent disruption of humanitarian issues, such as the exchange of detainees in connection with the conflict, the unblocking of the checkpoints on the Russian side, and so on.

"The Ukrainian delegation notes that these attempts are in vain. We call on the Russian representatives to return to the planned trilateral consultations," the Ukrainian delegation said.

It should be noted that the Russians are trying to involve Pirohova in the TCG negotiations, not for the first time. For example, on July 6, a member of the Ukrainian delegation, Serhii Harmash, reported that consultations in the TCG political subgroup had once again failed due to the presence of the same Pirohova.

During a visit to Ukraine on August 22, German Chancellor Angela Merkel expressed dissatisfaction with progress in the Minsk and Normandy formats. She stated the need to shape the agenda and hold a new Normandy summit at the highest level.

The Foreign Ministry stated that Ukraine was ready to hold a meeting of the heads of the Ministries of Foreign Affairs of the Normandy 4 member states. The TCG also told what Ukraine was ready to negotiate on Donbas in the Normandy format.

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