Ukraine Live Day 316: Poroshenko To Meet Putin Jan. 15, Stresses Importance of Ceasefire

December 30, 2014
Ukraineian President Petro Poroshenko briefly meets his counterparts, Vladimir Putin and Angela Merkel, in June | INTERNATIONALGUIDO BERGMANN / BUNDESREGIERUNG VIA GETTY IMAGES

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Ukrainian President to Meet Putin On January 15

Petro Poroshenko, Ukraine’s President, announced yesterday that he will meet Russian President Vladimir Putin, French President Francois Hollande, and German Chancellor Angela Merkel on January 15. At the meeting, Poroshenko hopes to cement a “fragile” and often broken ceasefire. Reuters reports:

He said he had spoken with U.S. President Barack Obama about the possibility of him joining talks on the territories where pro-Russian separatists launched a rebellion in April.

“The most important thing is to turn a fragile ceasefire into a stable peace and return previously occupied territories under the control of Ukrainian authorities,” said Poroshenko…

He said Kiev would not compromise on sovereignty and wanted east Ukraine, where over 4,700 people have been killed since April, as well as Crimea, annexed by Russia in March, back under its control. But a military solution was not possible.

“We haven’t got the resources for an offensive today.”

Meanwhile, Poroshenko says that despite the fact that he signed a new law into effect yesterday which abolishes Ukraine’s nonalignment status, Ukraine may be another 5-6 years away from meeting Western military standards and joining NATO. RFE/RL reports:

“When Ukraine meets the appropriate standards — I think that will be done within 5-6 years in the framework of strategy 2020 — then the people of Ukraine will determine whether the country will join NATO,” Poroshenko said.

The new law scraps 2010 legislation that barred Ukraine from seeking to join any military alliance.

This assumes, of course, that NATO would accept Ukraine’s application.