U.S. Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, calmed fears in Kyiv, Ukraine today as he met with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko and had strong works for the Kremlin.
“It is necessary for Russia to take the first steps to de-escalate the situation in the eastern part of Ukraine,” Tillerson told reporters at a joint news conference in Kiev with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko. “This is necessary for us to make any movement,” reported Associated Press.
“We do call on Russia to honor its commitments that were made under the Minsk accords and to exercise influence over the separatists in the region that they have complete control over,” he said, adding later: “The U.S. and E.U. sanctions on Russia will remain in place until Moscow reverses the actions that triggered these particular sanctions.”
Poroshenko, pleased with Tillerson’s words, commented on the “symbolic and timely visit immediately after the meetings at the G-20 in Hamburg…Kiev did not plan, did not start this war,” he said. “It was planned and started in Moscow. That’s why the keys to peaceful settlement are in Moscow.”
“We are disappointed by the lack of progress under the Minsk process and that’s why we are appointing a special representative,” declared Tillerson.
He also commented on additional reforms needed in Ukraine, “Ukraine has come a long way,” he said. “We want to acknowledge that, (but) we still have more to do,” he said. “This is all about securing Ukraine’s future: making the place attractive for investors, being attractive to their European neighbors.”