12:47 10.01.2017

Ukraine hopes intl arbitration on Crimea will start work in mid-2017

Ukraine expects the tribunal within the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea, which will study the issues related to Crimea, to start work in the middle of 2017, Deputy Foreign Minister of Ukraine for European Integration Olena Zerkal has said.

"We have completed all the necessary pre-trial procedures. The fact that the Russian Federation agreed to the creation of arbitration and tribunal, that they participated in selection of arbitrators - all this gives us hope for a more serious approach to its solution. We certainly hope that the arbitration will begin work from the middle of 2017," she said in an interview with the Ukrayinska Pravda edition.

According to her, the tribunal should make the decision in 2019-2021.

"Under the negative scenario, with the longest procedures, this is the middle of 2021; the fast-track scenario is not earlier than 2019."

The official stressed the tribunal would not consider the question of the state affiliation of the occupied peninsula.

"The ownership of Crimea is not in question - the tribunal will not consider this issue. The matter also does not concern the delimitation of the borders ... For the whole world Crimea is an occupied territory ... So there is no question of revising our maritime borders," she said.

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