Gunnar Bragi Sveinsson, Minister for Foreign Affairs, met today with Petro Poroshenko, President of Ukraine, and Pavlo Klimkin, Minister of Foreign Affairs, in Kyiv. Minister Sveinsson is on a two day visit to Ukraine together with Edgars Rinkēvičs, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Latvia. The meeting with President Poroshenko was also attended by Radoslaw Sikorski, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Poland
"It is very urgent that Ukraine can prosper as an open, democratic state, living in peace with all its neighbouring countries. In the meeting we discussed how to de-escalate the situation in Eastern Ukraine and how to ensure peace and security for the entire population of Ukraine" the Minister says.
The Minister emphasises the importance of reaching a ceasefire and that stakeholders sit at the negotiating table. Separatists in Eastern Ukraine have not yet expressed willingness to do so, which is of concern. He encourages the Russian Government to use its influence so that the separatists lay down their weapons and participate in talks to find a resolution to the situation.
The Minister reiterates that the annexation of Crimea by Russia is in breach with international law. "It is in the interest of Iceland that international law is always adhered to. That is why developments in Ukraine in recent months matter to us. My visit now is to ensure that Iceland´s voice is heard to preserve international law and order" the Minister says.