The working groups of the Trilateral Contact Group on Ukraine have gathered in Minsk for a new round of peace negotiations on Wednesday, January 31.
Hoping for the best!
— Belarus MFA 🇧🇾 (@BelarusMFA) January 31, 2018
The talks will be followed by a meeting of the Trilateral Contact Group, which is considered to be the only permanent format for resolving the conflict in the east of Ukraine.
At the previous meeting in Minsk on 18 January, the negotiators expressed hope that the year 2018 will be decisive for the implementation of the Minsk agreements.
The subgroup on humanitarian affairs spoke positively about the prisoners exchange on 27 December last year and discussed the next steps.
The diplomats also stressed considerable decrease in ceasefire violations during the festive season.
Other matters on the agenda included payments for water delivery as part of the Karbonit system, the implementation of the so-called Steinmeier formula and the law on Donbass’ reintegration.
Representatives of Ukraine, the Russian Federation, the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR), and the Lugansk People’s Republic (LPR) signed the Minsk Protocol, an agreement to halt the war in the Donbass region of Ukraine, on 5 September 2014.
It was signed after extensive talks in Minsk, Belarus, under the auspices of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE).
The agreement, which followed multiple previous attempts to stop the fighting in the Donbass, implemented an immediate ceasefire.
Unfortunately, it failed to stop fighting in Donbass.