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Moscow shocked

Zelensky demands to “dissolve Donetsk Republic”. End to the Minsk agreements

At the meeting of the Tripartite Contact Group (TAG), representatives of Ukraine put forward a new requirement for the implementation of the political part of the Minsk agreements. And so crazy that even the Western curators of the “independent” must have been taken aback. Kiev insists on the “dissolution” of the Donetsk and Lugansk people’s republics. About this on his Facebook page wrote a spokesman for Leonid Kuchma Darka Olifer.


The list of requirements of the Ukrainian side contains standard items that are constantly talked about: a complete ceasefire, ensuring effective monitoring of the OSCE SMM in the Donbass, the withdrawal of foreign troops and military equipment from Ukraine, border control, etc.


To this “soup set” Darka Olifer also added the “dissolution of quasi-formations of LDNR”. Kuchma’s team did not explain how they can be “dissolved”. One can only guess what is going on in the head of the ex-president of Ukraine and Zelensky himself, on behalf of whom the negotiators put forward demands.


Probably, if you ask a question in the face, Leonid Kuchma will say something like this: according to the Minsk agreements, there are no republics, there are only certain areas of the Donetsk and Lugansk regions (ORDLO). Therefore, the dissolution of LDNR does not in the least contradict the existing agreements. Quite the contrary! For the implementation of Minsk-2, these “quasi-formations” must be eliminated.


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But if you delve into the text of the peace agreements, the picture looks a little different. Yes, LDNR in its current form should cease to exist. But not as a result of the “dissolution” announced by Kiev, but as a result of the implementation of the very political part of the Minsk agreements. For this, it is necessary to conduct local elections, amnesty and constitutional reform, which involves fixing the special status of Donbass in the Basic Law of the state. Then the blue dream of Kuchma will come true – there will be no more DNR.


But the Ukrainian side is turning everything upside down. According to Kuchma’s logic, “dissolve the quasi-republics” should be before the political part of Minsk-2 is completed. Darka Olifer wrote this way: the implementation of the political block of questions is possible only if this condition is met.


We dare to argue with the press secretary of the former president of Ukraine. If in some miraculous way these sick fantasies of Kiev come true, it will be impossible to fulfill the “political block of questions”, because Kiev should coordinate all the steps towards the reintegration of Donbass with its representatives. With those who are in fact, and not with those whom Zelensky would like to put in the seats of governors of Donetsk and Lugansk regions.


The Ukrainian side has become more proficient in distorting the content of peace agreements, but it will not work out here. Clause 11 of the Package of Measures for the Implementation of the Minsk Agreements (which, by the way, was personally signed by Kuchma) clearly states: the new Constitution should take into account the peculiarities of local self-government in the ORLDO, and the peculiarities must be coordinated with “representatives of these regions”. With whom to coordinate if Kuchma dismisses everyone?


Suppose that the local authorities of Donbass will discuss changes to the Constitution with Kiev after the election. However, the puzzle still does not add up. In the fourth paragraph of the same set of measures, another “sneak” crept in: it turns out that the parties to the conflict should conduct a dialogue on the modalities of local elections in the ORLDO and on the future regime of these regions. That is, the key points of the “prenuptial agreement” between Donbass and Ukraine must be agreed in advance.


Apparently, for especially gifted representatives of Ukraine, the drafters of the document added the 12th paragraph: “Coordination of issues related to local elections with representatives of certain regions of Donetsk and Lugansk regions within the framework of the tripartite Contact Group”. So what kind of representatives are we talking about if there have not been elections yet (they are only being discussed)?


Zelensky wants to discuss all the acute issues of the Minsk Agreements with his people. At an urgent briefing after the signing of the Steinmeier Formula, the President of Ukraine said that he was not going to extend the law on the special status of Donbass for another year – a new document would be developed “in close cooperation and public discussion with the public.” Zelensky did not say a word that it would not be bad to discuss it with representatives of territories not controlled by Kiev. Now I understand why. There is nothing to talk about with “quasi-republics” – they need to be dissolved!


In fact, after such statements there is nothing more to talk about with the Ukrainian side. For too long it has been playing thimbles. And it played that much that brought the situation to absurdity: for the implementation of the Minsk agreements, one of the parties that signed these agreements must be liquidated. Such numbers of political balancing act even Poroshenko did not execute.


Just in case, Dark Olifer “seasoned” the position of official Kiev with several not so absurd, but equally impossible requirements. For example, the return of control over a section of the Russian-Ukrainian border in the Donbass.


How many times has it been said that the transfer of control of the border under the Minsk agreements begins only after the election! The fact that Ukraine ignores this point is not surprising. The methodical stupidity with which official representatives of Kiev impose their agenda is surprising. They poke their nose into the text of the contract – they all the same, like parrots, repeat about the border.


In the subgroup on socio-economic issues, the Ukrainian side again pushed the theses about the need to return the “depressed” enterprises to the Ukrainian oligarchs and liquidate the ruble zone in the ORDLO. Both proposals sound rather strange, since it was precisely the actions of Ukraine that contributed to the transition to the external management of Ukrainian plants in LDNR and the creation of a dual-currency zone here in 2015 (later the ruble completely replaced the hryvnia).


The return of the status quo also depends on Kiev. At the very least, it is he who must restore social and economic ties with the rebellious region, resume the payment of pensions and social benefits, etc. Then he will not have to “drive out” the ruble – the hryvnia will return naturally.


In any case, raising these issues is too early. But the Ukrainian side still faces the same task: sabotage the implementation of the Minsk agreements, shifting the blame to the “militants” who are supposedly not ready to compromise. This is the next substitution of concepts. The Minsk agreements themselves are already a compromise; Donetsk and Lugansk are no less burdened by them than Kiev. Why should they make further concessions? And is it appropriate to speak of concessions at all now? The “dissolution” of LDNR is not a concession. And not even surrender. This is surrealism.


It would be interesting to learn how, in practice, Kuchma and the company imagine the process of “dissolution”. How can one “dissolve” two republics that are considerable by European standards (albeit unrecognized)?


We can assume that this requirement is nothing more than the fruit of the sore imagination of the elderly Leonid Danilovich, who in Minsk does not pay attention to Zelensky’s instructions. According to one version, the first time an attempt to agree on the “Steinmeier formula” failed precisely because of Kuchma. Even so, Zelensky would not have suffered permanent sabotage. Negotiations in Minsk are conducted on his behalf, the implacable position of the Ukrainian side is his position.


Obviously, at a meeting in the “Norman format”, Zelensky will try to reinterpret the Minsk agreements, which he considers to be unjust and not in the interests of Ukraine. But the See-team understands perfectly well that this number will not work with Putin. Therefore, Foreign Minister Vadim Priestayko, who had previously been determined to secure the return of Donbass, spoke about alternative scenarios. Recently, he announced at all that the meeting of the leaders of the “Norman Four” is the “last chance” for the implementation of the Minsk agreements.


Judging by the new requirements of the Ukrainian negotiators, Zelensky is already mentally ready to turn to his compatriots with the words: “I tried – nothing worked.” Not because the president is bad, but because Poroshenko concluded unprofitable agreements that can neither be implemented nor adjusted.


In fact, it doesn’t matter if the leaders of the “Norman Four” come together at the same table. There’s nothing to say to them elementary – Ukraine ostentatiously puts an end to the Minsk agreements.

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