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Foreign Minister Mikser: Europe stands with Ukraine

06.02.2017

At today’s meeting of the EU foreign ministers in Brussels, the discussion focused on the situation in Ukraine.

Foreign ministers of the EU expressed concern over the military action in Avdiivka, eastern Ukraine that has escalated during the past week and condemned attacks against civilians. According to Foreign Minister Sven Mikser, it is most important to support Ukraine and continue with efforts to find a peaceful solution to the situation.

Permanent ceasefire is a key to solving the conflict. “As long as the military action in the east does not stop, implementing reforms in Kiev is difficult, especially reforms related to the Minsk Agreements,” Foreign Minister Sven Mikser said. According to Foreign Minister Mikser, the recent escalation of military action demonstrates that Russia avoids obligations it took under the Minsk agreements. “Europe and like-minded have to be consistent in imposing sanctions on Russia until it fulfils the Minsk Agreements,” Mikser emphasised. According to the Foreign Minister, one has to be ready for strengthening sanctions if the situation deteriorates.

The EU foreign ministers confirmed that despite the difficult situation, Ukraine has made progress in reforming the country’s economic, financial and energy sectors. Foreign Minister Sven Mikser said that it is important to quickly carry out changes in the judicial system, but also in fight against corruption and creating a better business climate.

According to Mikser, Estonia continues to support Ukraine by sharing reform experiences. Priorities of the 2017 development cooperation are introducing good governance and supporting business environment and education by using the opportunities offered by ICT. Estonia also participates in different EU assistance programs, e.g. e-State Academy participates in a program to improve administrative capacity. Estonia is also interested in participating in an upcoming project on fight against corruption. Estonian experts take part of the EU and OSCE missions in Ukraine.

Estonian Minister of Foreign Affairs noted that in relation to the upcoming third anniversary of the illegal annexation of Crimea in March, it is important to keep that topic updated on the EU agenda.

Foreign Ministers also discussed the political fragmentation in Libya, options to make the region more stable and end the political conflict, the political situation in Egypt and the Middle East peace process.


Photos: https://goo.gl/mHXSrj 


Additional information:
Marika Post
Spokesperson of the Permanent Representation of Estonia to the EU
+32 474 98 16 57

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