Negotiations with Russia could take place in Poland: former Ukrainian president

“Talks on settling the conflict in Donbass in Ukraine could be transferred from Belarus to Poland,” said the former president of Ukraine and the head of the Ukrainian delegation to the Trilateral Contact Group on settling the conflict, Leonid Kravchuk.

“If we take into account the former socialist countries, I would indicate Poland. In this case, there will be no doubt. We were not always friends with Poland, but there were also times of friendship,” Krawczuk told the Ukraine 24 television. He also did not rule out that the talks may take place in a country outside the former socialist bloc.

“It should be a neutral democratic country, by no means Belarus, as it speaks the words of Alexander Lukashenko, which in my opinion, are indecent things about Ukraine,” added the former president. "This is a country under the heel of Russia, an undemocratic country that chokes the protesters," he said.

However, according to Kravchuk, Russia will oppose the relocation of the talks. “But there is no other option, we will never agree to Minsk,” he emphasised.

Earlier, the Ukrainian deputy prime minister for the reintegration of the temporarily occupied territories, Oleksii Reznikov, stressed that a new place should be found for the talks of the trilateral group, because he did not trust Belarus. He announced on ICTV that the Ukrainian delegation would not participate in the negotiations, if they were to be continued in Minsk.

The trilateral contact group for regulating the situation in the Donbass region, which met in the capital of Belarus before the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, consists of representatives of Ukraine, Russia and the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE).