On 19 January 2020, Foreign Minister of Ukraine Dmytro Kuleba held talks with the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office, Foreign Minister of Sweden Ann Linde in the framework of her working visit to Ukraine.
The Minister and the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office discussed the security situation in the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine as well as the efforts aimed at peaceful resolution of the Russian-Ukrainian armed conflict.
Dmytro Kuleba stressed on the importance of the OSCE's effective engagement in response to the security challenges in Europe, with the Russian ongoing aggression against Ukraine in Crimea and Donbas being the gravest one. Minister Kuleba stressed on the necessity to ensure Russia's implementation of the agreements reached within the Trilateral Contact Group and in the Normandy format.
"It is important that the settlement of the Russian-Ukrainian armed conflict as a major threat to the European security remains a priority on the agenda of the Swedish OSCE Chairpersonship in 2021. Ukraine has fulfilled its commitments made at the Paris summit, but we do not see reciprocity on the part of Russia. We do hope that the Swedish OSCE Chair to play an important role in changing this situation for the better and prompting Russia to work constructively,” – he pointed out.
Ukraine’s Foreign Minister emphasised that the mandate of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission in Ukraine covers the entire territory of Ukraine within its internationally recognized borders, including the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol. He stressed the need to ensure unimpeded and full access of OSCE SMM personnel to Crimea, as required by the UN General Assembly Resolution 75/192 “Situation of human rights in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol, Ukraine", adopted on 16 December 2020.
“Launching of remote monitoring of the situation in Crimea is long overdue. The OSCE SMM has the capacity to start such a mechanism and is capable of conducting remote analysis of the situation in the occupied territories of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol,” – the Minister noted.
Dmytro Kuleba stressed on the importance of ensuring unimpeded access for the OSCE SMM in the temporarily occupied territories of Donbas.
The Ministers paid special attention to a wide range of issues of the Ukrainian-Swedish relations and the cooperation between Ukraine and Sweden within international organizations.
Dmytro Kuleba and Ann Linde also discussed coordination of efforts in countering the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic and vaccinating the population.
Minister Kuleba expressed special gratitude to Ann Linde for her active engagement in the preparation of a joint letter from a group of the EU Foreign Ministers to the European Commission asking to provide support to the EU's Eastern Partners, including Ukraine, in obtaining the vaccines currently available to the EU. Ukraine’s Foreign Minister expressed confidence that Ukraine and the EU will continue to cooperate effectively in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic.
On Wednesday, 20 January 2020, the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office together with the Minister for Foreign Affairs of Ukraine will visit the area of the Joint Forces Operation in Donbas, where she can get first-hand information about the activities of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine and learn more about the consequences of the Russian aggression against Ukraine.