Germany - Ukraine - Q&R Excerpts from the daily press briefing (Paris, May 12, 2016)(May 12, 2016)

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Q - Jean-Marc Ayrault traveled to Berlin yesterday to take part in a meeting in the Normandy format. Could you give us some details about this meeting and describe the concrete results?

A - During the meeting in the Normandy format, which took place yesterday, May 11, in Berlin, the discussions held by the French, German, Russian and Ukrainian foreign ministers focused on three aspects of the implementation of the Minsk agreements:

1- With respect to security in eastern Ukraine, the ministers agreed on concrete progress toward consolidating the ceasefire, such as the withdrawal of troops from the “hot spots,” the establishment of demilitarized areas, the withdrawal of weapons, the implementation of mine clearance actions and the establishment of a coordination mechanism between the Joint Center for Control and Coordination, implemented to monitor the ceasefire, and the OSCE.

2- With respect to the local elections in eastern Ukraine, the ministers tasked the coordinator of the political working group, Ambassador Pierre Morel, with continuing discussions based on the draft electoral law presented by Ukraine and the Russian proposals.

3- Lastly, the ministers specified that the parties would continue to examine, over the next few weeks, the options put forward by the OSCE with respect to ensuring the security of the elections.

Following this productive meeting, France and Germany are determined to continue their efforts to ensure that the consolidation of the ceasefire in effect since the Easter truce will allow the forthcoming elections in eastern Ukraine to take place.