20:37 GMT +322 January 2020
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    After Minsk: Will Peace Come to Ukraine? (1049)

    Ukrainian lawmaker Nadezhda Savchenko could hold talks with leaders of the self-proclaimed People’s Republics of Donetsk and Lugansk (DPR and LPR) in Ukraine’s southeast as soon as in September, the Russian Izvestia newspaper reports citing a DPR source.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) – In May, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree to pardon Savchenko, who was convicted in Russia of being an accomplice to the murder of two Russian journalists in Ukraine’s southeast (Donbass). She was subsequently delivered to Ukraine.

    "According to preliminary information, the meeting could be held already in September-October on the DPR territory. On our part, we are ready to discuss all issues, including prisoner exchanges," the source said.

    In June, Savchenko suggested that Kiev started direct talks with DPR and LPR. She announced her readiness to be a negotiator, stressing she supported pardoning members of Donbass militia.

    At the start of this month, Savchenko announced a hunger strike to last until the processes of releasing Ukrainian prisoners of war in Donbass is renewed.

    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, a peace agreement was signed between Ukraine’s conflicting sides in the Belarusian capital, Minsk. One of the agreement’s provisions is an all-for-all prisoner exchange.

    The deal also stipulates a full ceasefire in Donbass, but violations both on the part of Kiev forces and local militia have been reported.

    After Minsk: Will Peace Come to Ukraine? (1049)


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