Ambassador: Russia is responsible for the war in the Eastern Ukraine
The Ukrainian Ambassador to Finland Andrii Olefirov’s message is unambiguous. Russian troops must be withdrawn from the Eastern Ukraine, if we want put an end to military actions in the region.
Ukraine's Ambassador to Finland Andrii Olefirov, 44, is a longtime diplomat, who easily intimidates the Russian propaganda trolls, visited Turku at the end of the week. It is a matter of concern, however, the fact that Ukraine, a former Soviet Union country of the size of France, would be able to make progress on that path, is opened.
Right now, it is crucial to strengthen confidence, which creates the basis for Ukraine and the European Union Association Agreement.
- The well-known green men from Crimea have operated in the Eastern Ukraine war zone, recalls Olefirov.
It was intended that green men meant heavily armed unidentified soldiers.
They have a military food packages with Russian markings. A little bit later unidentified professional soldiers first appeared in Crimea in the same way possessed immediately important items in the Eastern Ukraine. Only later Russia recognized that there were soldiers of the Russian Federation armed forces.
Ambassador underlines that Russia invaded the Ukrainian Crimean region illegally.
According to him, that was a blatant violation of the principles of international law and territorial integrity.
- Later the Russian leadership acknowledged the existence of the green men in Crimea officially. This statement canceled all the disgusting lies, which ware presented to the international community and which ware vehemently maintained by the Russian propaganda. The same is repeated in the Eastern Ukraine.
The ambassador sums up the fact that Russia has made every effort to erode Ukraine's political unity for years.
When economic pressure and bribery measures did not have sufficient effect, open military operations began in Crimea and the Eastern Ukraine.
Olefirov, who was a deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs of Ukraine five years ago when preparing the Ukraine - EU Association Agreement took place, is talking about Ukraine’s relations with the EU. The agreement aims at bringing Ukraine legislatively closer to the EU.
- In spite of the difficult circumstances of this moment we are trying to develop our country, Olefirov says.
- We have a lot of other bordered by the Russian Federation. I am glad that the geographically more distant, the Finnish Parliament supported Ukraine - EU Association Agreement, which will facilitate Ukraine's trade with the EU. Also, introduction the visa free regime that is of our common interest.
The EU has repeatedly announced its firm commitment to the political and peaceful solution of the conflict in the Eastern part of Ukraine. It means the respect of Ukraine's independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity. All parties have to adhere the Minsk agreements as a whole to completion.
The duration of the EU economic sanctions imposed on Russia depends as a whole on the implementation of the Minsk agreements. The international community is seriously concerned about increased numbers of cease-fire violations. Conflict results the humanitarian emergency addressed in every way; Ukraine have to be encouraged to facilitate the delivery of humanitarian aid to the conflict zone. The EU is also concerned about the weakening of the Crimean Tatar human rights situation in the peninsula. The Union calls for the full, free and unrestricted access of international humanitarian actors to the territory of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol.
The EU has explicitly and repeatedly stresses that it does not recognize illegal annexation of Crimea and Sevastopol by Russia and it continues to condemn the annexation.