Ukraine Day 1188: LIVE UPDATES BELOW. President Petro Poroshenko travelled to Berlin to meet with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who urged another meeting of the Normandy Quartet soon.
Yesterday’s coverage of the Ukraine conflict can be found here.
Photo: T72B tank manufactured only by Russia, which appeared in the Russia-backed separatists’ May 9 Victory Day parade in Donetsk. Photo via Bellingcat.
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko met with German Chancellor Angela Merkel today in Berlin, Deutsche Welle reported:
“Today our main theme will be how to improve the security situation,” Merkel said. “The security situation … is the main precondition for making further political progress.”
“We must act decisively to return the Minsk process to a constructive course, and we do not see an alternative to the Minsk process,” Poroshenko said.
DW noted that relations between Russia and Germany have grown strained lately, not only over the wars in Syria and Ukraine but Russian cyberattacks on Germany and support for far-right parties in Europe as well as attacks on gays in Chechnya.
A recurring problem in the Minsk process and Normandy talks is the different emphasis the parties place on security improvements versus political changes. Ukraine calls out continued ceasefire violations by Russia-backed troops and the failure to remove heavy armor per the agreement, with constant resupply of arms and personnel from Russia. Russia constantly complains about what it sees as a failure of Kiev to make Constitutional changes to permit autonomous rule in the Donbass, and to adapt to its understanding of the agreements.
Occasionally Russia has some success in getting Western powers to pressure Ukraine to make legislative changes but this is politically impossible, as Kiev always reminds the West, until Russia removes its invading forces and support for local fighters in good faith.
Near Novozvanovka and Popasnaya, 82-mm and 120-mm mortars were fired on Ukrainian positions, and 122-mm artillery near Novoaleksandrovka.