German PM claims it necessary to lift sanctions and return Russia to G8

Chancellor Merkel and presidents of France, Russia and Ukraine meet at the summit dedicated to Ukraine. If talking about Foreign Minister Maas, then his opinion is as follows: a peaceful solution must be found. But there are also calls for lifting the economic sanctions.

Before the Ukrainian summit in Paris, Federal Foreign Minister Heiko Maas called on for a peaceful settlement in the east of the country. The conflict has been “a growing pain in Europe for many years”, Maas told the Funke media group newspaper.

 “We cannot just agree to peace and stability in our neighbouring area”, – he added.

The SPD politician noted that the Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky “launched a new dynamics with bold steps”.

“In order to move on to implementation of future common difficult steps, Russia must also move in this direction”, – he stated.

At the same time, Brandenburg Prime Minister Dietmar Woidke promotes rapprochement between Russia and the European Union.

“We must look into each other’s eyes and talk so that it would be possible to once again establish the foundation of trust. It would never work with reproaches!”, – the SPD politician in the German editorial network.

In his opinion, a close exchange with Moscow is inevitable.

“The USA and Europe need as much dialogue as possible with Russia, especially after the termination of the INF Treaty”, – Woidke said, referring to the ban on the deployment of medium-range nuclear missiles.

“It’s good that there is again an opportunity for dialogue in the Russia-NATO Council or in the Council of Europe”, – he added.

However, negotiations were also conducted on a bilateral basis, for example, in the framework of the Petersburg dialogue between Bmerlin and Moscow. In addition, Woidke advocated the return of Russia to the circle of G8 countries.

“It would be good if Russia created conditions for return. Russia is related to it – it is also included into our interests”, – he said.

Nevertheless, Woidke called for the following condition:

“Visible beginning of the implementation of Minsk agreements is crucial for this”.

It provides for de-escalation and pacification of the war that has been raging in the east of Ukraine since 2014.

In Paris, Chancellor Angela Merkel and the French President Emmanuel Macron meet with state Heads of Ukraine and Russia – Vladimir Zelensky and Vladimir Putin. This is the first summit in this so-called Normandy format in the last three years.

Since 2014, about 13,000 people have been killed during the conflict between Ukrainian forces and pro-Russian rebels in eastern Ukraine. The government of Kiev and the West accuses Russia of financial support for the separatists and the sale of weapons.

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