Zelenskyy Discusses Donbas Conflict With Benelux Foreign Ministers

Zelenskyy Discusses Donbas Conflict With Benelux Foreign Ministers

KIEV (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 07th May, 2021) Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy held talks with foreign ministers of Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg to discuss the situation in its breakaway east and along the border, his press service said on Friday.

The three Benelux Union countries have their top diplomats paying a working visit to Ukraine at the moment. On Thursday, the ministers visited Ukraine's eastern Donbas region, which includes the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Luhansk people's republics.

"The President briefed the ministers in detail on the security situation in Donbas, as well as on the steps Ukraine is taking to achieve peace," the press release read.

Zelenskyy noted the consistency of Benelux support of Ukraine's territorial integrity and sovereignty, as well as their practical assistance to Ukrainian defense. The European ministers, in turn, praised Ukraine's "consistent adherence to the truce in Donbas," according to the statement.

"Due to the increase of the Russian Federation's armed forces on the borders of Ukraine, the interlocutors expressed a common opinion on the inadmissibility of such actions, as they pose a threat to European security and stability," Zelenskyy's office said.

The Ukrainian president reiterated the invitation to leaders of Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg to partake in the Crimean Platform, his flagship initiative aimed at discussing Crimea's secession from Ukraine and reintegration with Russia. The forum is scheduled to take place in Kiev from August 23-24.

Ukraine never made its peace with Crimea voting in a 2014 referendum to re-enter Russia's territory. In March, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova warned that Kiev's attempts to "return" Crimea were illegitimate and would be perceived as a threat of aggression against Russia's sovereign territory.