BRUSSELS, November 3 (RIA Novosti) —Gas agreements between Russia and Ukraine will be fulfilled even despite the fact that Kiev effuses to recognize elections in Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics, Vladimir Chizhov, Russia's Permanent Representative to the EU, told RIA Novosti Monday.
“The signatory parties have made the political commitments. I would like to note that the protocol is legally binding, and the term ‘binding’ was included there not on Russian initiative [ but on Ukrainian]. I think there are grounds to believe that these agreements will be fulfilled as all the sides are interested in them,” Chizhov said.
Last Thursday, after months of negotiations, the final round of gas talks between Russia and Ukraine, brokered by the European Union, finished with the signing of a so-called "winter package" agreement securing gas supplies to Ukraine until March. The agreement stipulates that Russia resumes gas supplies to Ukraine and gives Kiev a $100 discount on the price it pays per 1,000 cubic meters of gas, while Kiev agreed to pay $3.1 billion to cover part of its debt to Gazprom by the end of 2014.
On Sunday, the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Luhansk people's republics held elections for the heads of local governments and representatives of the legislative bodies.
Kiev and several western countries said they would not recognize the results of this vote and have repeatedly called it illegitimate. Russia, however, has emphasized that not recognizing the results of the elections in Donbas would run counter to the Minsk protocol and undermine efforts to establish peace in the country.