Steinmeier says no "standoff" in relations with Russia if Minsk agreement to be implemented
German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier has called for Russian and Ukraine to observe the Minsk agreements and to prevent the conflict in the occupied Crimean peninsula from escalation.
The statement came during a Monday joint press conference with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov in Yekaterinburg.
On coming to the Russian city, Steinmeier stressed there is no standoff in relations between Russia and the West, though Kremlin is yet to fully implement the Minsk agreements to end the conflict in Donbas region.
The German foreign minister said he had earlier conducted talks with the foreign ministers of Russia and Ukraine on the situation in Crimea. He added he had new suggestions on improving the security situation in Donbas conflict zone.
The German foreign minister also stated that apart from Kremlin's claims, his government did not receive any independent information on Ukraine alledgedly planning terrorist attacks in Crimea. He added there are discrepancies between the Ukrainian and Russian versions of the events on Crimea's border.
In his turn, Lavrov said he understood the need for more sources of information and claimed Russia does not hide information available to it.
Lavrov added his country is not interested in cutting off diplomatic ties with Ukraine. He added Russia is making attempts to stabilise the situation in Crimea regardless of what Ukraine or Western partners say on the topic.
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said Russia's accusations of terrorism against Ukraine were fantasies and served merely as a pretext for more military threats against the country.