Russia unwilling to rush into Normandy Four summit

Moscow sees no reason to hold a Normandy Four summit though Kiev, supported by Paris and Berlin, has been insisting on it, a high-ranking Russian diplomatic source told Izvestia.

In his first two months as President of Ukraine, Vladimir Zelensky managed to convince the French and German leaders that there was a need to arrange a Normandy Four summit. Paris and Berlin have expressed their support for Kiev on the matter. Nevertheless, Russia is not ready to take part in such a summit because Ukraine still hasn’t implemented its obligations under the Minsk Agreements, the Russian diplomatic source said. "There is a risk that talks will turn out to be a waste of time due to the lack of a specific agenda," he pointed out.

Federation Council (upper house) Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Konstantin Kosachev explained that "unfortunately, while talking about his commitment to resolving the conflict in Donbass and establishing peace there, Zelensky has also made statements that run counter to the Minsk Agreements." "He said he didn’t think it was necessary to adopt an amnesty law and grant special status to the southeastern regions," the senator specified.

According to Russian Institute for Strategic Studies expert Oleg Nemensky, Kiev hasn’t yet put forward any meaningful initiatives that would be worth discussing at the Normandy Four level. "We are dealing with the country’s new and inexperienced authorities who believe that such meetings can be held just for the sake of meeting, though they are unable even to forge specific proposals," the expert noted. He also said that in such a situation, the Normandy Four leaders would hardly reach any agreements, while Ukraine would take advantage of the summit for domestic propaganda purposes and would also seek to blame Moscow for the lack of progress in resolving the Donbass issue.

Kiev Zelensky