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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Iran Press TV

EU warned against supplying lethal arms to Ukraine

Iran Press TV

Mon Mar 16, 2015 11:40AM

Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Alexey Meshkov has warned that supplying lethal weapons by European Union (EU) countries to Ukraine would threaten the security of all of Europe.

"We're warning our European Union partners that the deliveries of lethal weapons would be an irresponsible and illegitimate step with very serious consequences for the security of the entire European continent," said Meshkov at a hearing in Russia's lower house of parliament, the State Duma, on Monday.

Meshkov added, "I would like to remind our EU partners that a whole system of international restrictions for such deliveries continues to be in effect."

The remarks came just days after Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said that Kiev has sealed military deals with 11 EU states, which include the delivery of lethal arms.

According to Poroshenko's official website, Kiev expressed confidence that EU states as well as the US will supply lethal weaponry to the Ukrainian government forces "if there is a new round of aggression against Ukraine."

Igor Plotnitsky, the head of the self-proclaimed Lugansk People's Republic in eastern Ukraine, responded to Poroshenko's hawkish statements, saying he does not understand why Kiev insists on purchasing weaponry while officially engaged in a peace process.

The two warring sides, Kiev and pro-Russia forces in Ukraine's eastern regions of Lugansk and Donetsk, reached a ceasefire last month following peace talks in the Belarusian capital, Minsk, on February 11-12 between the leaders of Germany, France, Russia and Ukraine.

Back in September 2014, the representatives of Ukraine, Russia, and the self-proclaimed republics of Donetsk and Lugansk signed another ceasefire deal in Minsk. However, the truce was violated on an almost daily basis by both the Ukrainian military and the pro-Russia forces and thus failed to deliver any practical result.

Donetsk and Lugansk have been hit by deadly clashes between pro-Russia forces and the Ukrainian army since Kiev launched military operations in April last year to crush pro-Russia protests there.

CAH/HJL/HRB



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