Conditions for holding elections in Donbas not met – Steinmeier
Germany's Foreign Minister and acting head of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) Frank-Walter Steinmeier has said that conditions for holding elections in Donbas have not been met and that the sides should continue negotiating to achieve progress to meet these conditions.
"At the present time we cannot speak about holding elections in Donbas, but we have no alternative to the Minsk agreements. Therefore, I, as OSCE chairman and member of the German government, continue to work, despite the complexity of the task, to develop a basis for realizing certain elements of the Minsk agreements in the part of ensuring agreed upon truce, which is constantly violated… Political elements of the Minsk accords, involving amnesty, special status and conducting local elections, are even more complicated," Steinmeier said at Thursday's session of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe in Strasbourg.
Steinmeier expressed the hope that the required packet of laws could be agreed upon.
"Once the law is agreed, it will be necessary to ensure a certain level of security for conducting elections … You are correct that the necessary conditions for holding elections have not yet been met, but that does not mean we are not working on this," he said.