Russia and Ukraine agree to implement a ceasefire by year-end

Russia and Ukraine have made progress on restoring peace in eastern Ukraine at a Paris summit mediated by Germany and France. In addition to implementing a ceasefire, the two sides also agreed to a prisoner exchange.

Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Ukrainian counterpart, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, agreed to implement a ceasefire in eastern Ukraine by year-end, following their first meeting on Monday at a summit in Paris mediated by France and Germany.

“The sides commit to a full and comprehensive implementation of the cease-fire, strengthened by the implementation of all necessary ceasefire support measures, before the end of the year 2019,” according to a joint communique. […]

Hope for Minsk peace deal
“I say very openly, we have a lot of work to do, but my feeling from this meeting here today is that there is goodwill to resolve difficult questions,” Merkel told a joint news conference with the leaders of France, Ukraine and Russia.

Disagreements over elections
French President Emmanuel Macron said that Ukraine and Russia failed to agree on a timetable for elections in eastern Ukraine, but that he hoped the two sides could reach a compromise within four months.[…]

Zelenskiy less optimistic
“Many questions were tackled and my counterparts have said it is a very good result for a first meeting. But I will be honest, it is very little; I wanted to resolve a larger number of problems,” he said after the talks in Paris.

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