Germany Hopes for Progress on Ukraine at Normandy Format Talks - Steinmeier

The upcoming Normandy Quartet summit should lead to progress in Ukrainian conflict resolution, German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier told RIA Novosti.

NEW YORK (Sputnik) – The leaders of Russia, Ukraine, Germany and France (the "Normandy Quartet") are expected to meet on Friday in Paris to continue discussions surrounding the Ukrainian crisis.

Normandy format talks - Sputnik International
Normandy Quartet Leaders to Meet in Paris to Discuss Minsk Deal

Steinmeier told RIA Novosti on Thursday that "progress should be reached" at the meeting.

The Normandy Quartet was established in the summer of 2014 when the four leaders met on the sidelines of D-Day commemorations in Normandy, France to discuss the Ukrainian crisis.

Ukraine’s southeast has been engulfed in a conflict since April 2014, when the new Kiev authorities, which came to power as a result of a coup, launched a military operation against independence supporters in the Donetsk and Lugansk regions.

Serviceman of Ukrainian volunteers battalion of Donbass prepares a machine gun on the positions near the village of Shirokine, Donetsk region on June 6, 2015 - Sputnik International
Russia Expects Full Implementation of Minsk Peace Deals in Ukraine
A ceasefire was reached between the two sides in September 2014, but it failed to hold.

In February 2015, Normandy Quartet leaders met in the Belarusian capital, Minsk, holding marathon talks on Ukraine. The meeting led to the signing of a breakthrough peace agreement between Kiev and the self-proclaimed southeastern republics of Donetsk and Lugansk (DPR and LPR).

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Thursday that Moscow recognizes a lack of progress in the implementation of the February Minsk peace agreements and hopes to ensure their success through Normandy format talks on October 2.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov discussed the upcoming Normandy Quartet meeting with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on Thursday. The United Nations said in a statement that Ban Ki-moon hopes for further progress on key security, political and humanitarian issues related to the Minsk peace accords.

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