12 February 2015

Ukraine Peace Agreement Reached in Minsk. Again.

Following 16 hours of negotiations, the leaders of Germany, France, Russia, and Ukraine agreed to a new protocol to stop the fighting in Eastern Ukraine. Russia is the big winner of the talks, as the “Minsk 2” agreement calls for an immediate ceasefire starting at midnight on February 15, a buffer zone of at least 50 km between the two sides, and autonomy for the two Russian-speaking provinces (the local militias will be responsible to maintain public order, while Ukraine will reinstate pensions and other payments). Putin did not sign the settlement. Heavy fighting continues near Debaltseve, where 8,000 Ukrainian troops are circled by pro-Russian fighters.

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