Ukraine’s Poroshenko ready to prematurely cancel ceasefire

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has ordered leaders of the armed forces to open fire in response to attacks on Ukrainian troops by members of illegal armed groups, and has said he doesn’t rule out the early termination of the truce, Interfax-Ukraine reports.

Poroshenko announced this at a meeting with army and law-enforcement officials on Tuesday evening, the president’s press service reported.

‘On June 24 militants, despite their own promises to respect the ceasefire given at a meeting with the tripartite contact group in Donetsk, shot down a helicopter of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, as the result of which nine people died. Since the announcement of the president’s peace plan, the terrorists opened fire on Ukrainian military 35 times,’ the statement reads.

The head of state ordered ‘to open fire in response without hesitation.’

‘The president does not rule out that the ceasefire can be canceled prematurely, taking into account its constant violation by militants, who are controlled from the outside,’ the press service said.

Furthermore, Poroshenko hopes for holding a four-way telephone conference on June 25 with the participation of German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Francois Hollande and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

‘Petro Poroshenko expects that this conversation will result in Russia’s taking practical steps to ensure the disarmament and withdrawal of mercenaries from the territory of Ukraine, as well as the introduction of a reliable security regime on the border,’ the statement reads.

On Tuesday Russia’s Vladimir Putin admitted that ‘it is not enough just to declare truce’ at a news conference after today’s talks with Austria’s president. At the same time, Kiev should not be demanding disarmament in eastern Ukraine, Mr Putin said. ‘Radical elements like the Right Sector and other radical [groups] are not yet disarmed, despite repeatedly talking about that and basically promising that illegal groups will lay down arms,’ Russia Today quotes Mr Putin as saying.

It is to be recalled that Russian President Vladimir Putin suggested Tuesday that the upper chamber of the Russian parliament, the Federation Council, cancelled its permission for a Russian military action in Ukraine.

On June, 21 Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko signed a decree enacting the decision of the National Security and Defense Council (NSDC) of June 16 this year, which supported the president’s plan on the peaceful settlement of the situation in the eastern regions of the country. Poroshenko’s plan envisions guarantees of security for all parties to negotiations, an exemption from criminal liability for those who did not commit serious crimes and who lay down their arms, and the freeing of hostages.But the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic refused to recognise the terms of truce.

See also