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Ukraine's Foreign Minister Says West Should Toughen Sanctions Against Russia

RIA Novosti

16:00 04/11/2014

BERLIN, November 4 (RIA Novosti) - The West should toughen its sanctions against Russia over the Ukrainian crisis, Ukraine's Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin said in an interview with the Bild newspaper on Tuesday.

'If the western world wants Russia to listen to its opinion and follow international rules, then the logical next step would be to put pressure on the country, including toughening the sanctions,' Klimkin told the Bild.

Since March, the European Union, the United States and their partners have imposed several rounds of economic sanctions against Russia over the country's alleged role in the Ukrainian internal conflict.

Klimkin also stated that Russia's recognition of the elections held in the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Luhansk people's republics (the DPR, LPR) contradicts the Minsk agreements.

Klimkin added that in his opinion Russia is disrespectful of the West.

On Sunday, the DPR and the LPR held general and parliamentary elections.

The ceasefire agreement reached by the Ukrainian government and independence supporters on September 5 in Minsk stipulated that Kiev would ensure that early local elections in the regions of Donetsk and Luhansk would be held on December 7. The leaders of DPR and LPR have nevertheless held elections earlier and laid claim to all the territory within their respective administrative entities in Ukraine.

The Russian Foreign Ministry published a statement in response to the elections in the DPR and the LPR, in which it stated that Russia would respect the choice of the people in the south-eastern regions of Ukraine. The elected leaders received a mandate to resolve the crisis and restore normal life in the region.

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