In an interview with the Financial Times, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky called for the Minsk agreements to be changed and the Normandy Four negotiations expanded.
"I am involved in a process that was developed before I even became president," said Zelensky. In his opinion, the Minsk agreements are not flexible enough and do not meet the demands of the current situation.
Zelensky said that he saw two ways out of the current deadlock: either to change the format of the Minsk talks, or to abandon them altogether and adopt some other format of a peaceful settlement. At the same time, he said that the decision must be taken quickly, because "we lose people every day."
The Ukrainian President also proposed to "expand and deepen" the Normandy format of the Donbas talks between Russia and Ukraine, which are mediated by France and Germany. In his opinion, the "four" could become the "seven" after including the United States, Canada and Great Britain in the talks.
In 2019, President Zelensky said that he wanted to change the 9th paragraph of the Minsk agreements, which spells out the return to Ukraine of control over the border between the separatist-held areas of the Donbas and Russia.
The current version of the Minsk agreements states that Ukraine will begin to gain control over the border only after the local elections.
Russia categorically refuses any, even cosmetic, changes to the Minsk agreements. Russian President Vladimir Putin explained that changing one paragraph could lead to changes in others.