PARIS (Sputnik) — On Tuesday, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said that the administration of then-US President Barack Obama sought the expansion of the Normandy format, however, the European countries rejected the idea.
"The Normandy format provides a permanent basis for a productive and regular dialogue, which aims at achieving the implementation of the entire package of the Minsk agreements," Nadal said at a press briefing.
The ministerial spokesman pointed out that Washington as well as other European states, which are kept informed of the progress of talks might also "play an important role by urging Russia and Ukraine to implement their obligations."
Viktor Yanukovych in February. Residents of the Donetsk and Lugansk regions held independence referendums and proclaimed the People's Republics of Donetsk and Lugansk. Kiev has since been conducting a military operation, encountering stiff local resistance.
In February 2015, Kiev forces and Donbass independence supporters signed a peace agreement in the Belarusian capital of Minsk. The deal stipulates a full ceasefire, weapons withdrawal from the line of contact in Donbass, as well as constitutional reforms that would give a special status to the Donetsk and Lugansk People's Republics. Despite the agreement brokered by the Normandy Four states, the ceasefire regime is regularly violated, with both sides accusing each other of multiple breaches, undermining the terms of the accord.