15:27 GMT24 October 2020
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    UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson has called on the conflicting sides in Ukraine to use the new ceasefire to establish lasting peace in the southeast (Donbass).

    LONDON (Sputnik) – On Wednesday, the Trilateral Contact Group on Ukraine announced that a new ceasefire would come into effect in southeastern Ukraine ahead of winter holidays, on midnight December 24.

    "I welcome the announcement of a ceasefire in eastern Ukraine, which follows particularly high levels of violence over recent days. This conflict continues to have a devastating effect on millions of people living on both sides of the line of contact. I urge all parties to observe this ceasefire, and to use it as a basis to make progress in building a lasting peace in eastern Ukraine in 2017," Johnson said in a Friday statement.

    Kiev launched a special military operation in Ukraine’s southeast in April 2014, after local residents refused to recognize the new Ukrainian authorities, which came to power as a result of a coup. In February 2015, the two sides reached a peace agreement after talks brokered by the leaders of Russia, France, Germany and Ukraine — the so-called Normandy Format — in the Belarusian capital of Minsk. Kiev has been reluctant to implement a number of Minsk deal provisions.

    Multiple ceasefires have been introduced in Donbass since the start of the conflict, but all of them have failed to hold as both sides blamed each other for violations.

    Related:

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    UN Secretary-General Welcomes Ceasefire in Eastern Ukraine
    Putin Welcomes Announced Ceasefire in Southeast Ukraine - Kremlin
    Tags:
    peace, ceasefire, contact group, Donbass, Ukraine
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