Putin opposed US participation in Donbas talks, so Normandy format emerged, - Kuchma

Russian President Vladimir Putin campaigns against the U.S. participation in the talks to settle the conflict in Donbas.

Ukraine's representative in the Trilateral Contact Group on settlement of situation in the Donbas, former President of Ukraine Leonid Kuchma said delivering speech at the Baltic-Black Sea Forum in Kyiv, Censor.NET reports citing UNIAN.

"The Normandy format has certainly drawn much criticism in Ukraine recently for its efforts to resolve Ukraine's most severe problem - the problem of war and peace," he said.

Read more: Steinmeier on outcome of Minsk talks: "Pure lip service will not be enough to solve this conflict"

"But can someone offer a different format? Please, tell me, do you really think that Poroshenko did not want the U.S., U.K. and maybe even China, which was Budapest Memorandum signatory as well, to be involved when he was considering signing of the Minsk agreements? The consent of all the parties was crucial, which had no desire to be involved in this, in tackling such a problem," Kuchma said.

"It was necessary to ask Vladimir Putin whether he did not mind U.S. participation. I will tell you in advance that he did mind. Therefore we were choosing from all available options. Geneva format was created first, but then the U.S. left it for the same reason. Thus, the Normandy format emerged," the former president said.

Read more: US has no intention to join Normandy format, - Ambassador Yovanovitch

"I think the major achievement is that we have stopped the war. Everyone knows the figures submitted by the U.N.: 10,000 killed (during the conflict). This information was submitted by the U.N., but I think the figures are quite different," Kuchma said.
Источник: https://censor.net.ua/en/n417434