Tags: EU | Ukraine | Rebel Elections

Ukraine Rebels to Delay Local Election, Sidestep Tense Topic

Ukraine Rebels to Delay Local Election, Sidestep Tense Topic

Tuesday, 06 October 2015 04:53 PM

MOSCOW (AP) — Officials in rebel-controlled eastern Ukraine announced Tuesday they will postpone local elections that were going to be held shortly, sidestepping a contentious issue that had blocked progress toward a resolution for the war in Ukraine.

Ukraine's president and Russian lawmakers hailed the move as a step toward peace. More than 8,000 people have been killed since April 2014 during fighting between Ukrainian government troops and the Russia-backed separatists.

A statement Tuesday from Denis Pushilin and Vladislav Deinego said the rebel-run areas of Donetsk and Luhansk provinces would put off their local votes until Feb. 21. The two men are the rebel envoys to the Minsk Group peace talks mediated by the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.

Donetsk had planned an election on Oct. 18 and Luhansk was going to vote on Nov. 1.

In exchange for postponing the vote, the separatists say Ukraine must grant a special status to the mostly Russian-speaking region, broadly called Donbass, as envisioned by Minsk peace accord.

"This paves the way for Ukraine's return to Donbass by helping to conduct the election in accordance with Ukrainian law, on the basis of OSCE standards and certainly without the occupation forces," Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said.

U.S. State Department spokesman Mark Toner also welcomed the rebels' decision.

"People living in separatist-controlled areas deserve to pick their local officials in elections that meet international standards, are compliant with Ukrainian law and monitored by the OSCE," he told reporters in Washington.

Leonid Slutsky, a top member of the foreign affairs committee in Russia's parliament, said he welcomed the move "but I have doubts about how much capacity Poroshenko has to fulfill his obligations."

© Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

   
1Like our page
2Share
Europe
Officials in rebel-controlled eastern Ukraine announced Tuesday they will postpone local elections that were going to be held shortly, sidestepping a contentious issue that had blocked progress toward a resolution for the war in Ukraine.Ukraine's president and Russian...
EU,Ukraine,Rebel Elections
278
2015-53-06
Tuesday, 06 October 2015 04:53 PM
Newsmax Media, Inc.
 
 

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

NEWSMAX.COM
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved