CETA trade agreement

Austria’s Federal Chancellor Kern has announced a member questioning in the SPÖ to CETA. The result should be a rejection. The Austrian Chancellor Kern said he was prepared to hold a conflict with the EU.
This will be the next conflict within the EU that Austria is triggering. That will be so, “said Austria’s Federal Chancellor Christian Kern to the ORF. “These free trade agreements actually bring about a massive shift in power for the benefit of globally operating corporations under the cover of free trade, and democratic co-determination, which is a fundamental web defect”. In the end, one had to focus on the fact that “democratic participation in the shaping of our economy remains possible and that we are not shifting the power relations to global corporations”.
Kern announced on Friday in Vienna a member questioning in the SPÖ to the CETA agreement. In view of the resistance that had been formulated so far, it was a signing of Austria, without having been so thoroughly explained and punctured point by point. This is not a populist reflex, but a broad movement against CETA. The outcome of this survey is, however, clear: the majority of the SPÖ members are unlikely to answer yes to the question asked whether to vote for CETA if there is a danger that European standards will be lowered.

Austria is particularly critical of the planned free trade agreement between the EU and the USA (TTIP). CETA, however, contains similar points, Kern said. He did not go into details. He is expected to comment extensively on TTIP at a press conference.

According to surveys, the agreements are also very different in the European population. In Austria, the rejection is particularly large. Many fear that rules for food safety might be softened. Supporters reject this.

In Germany, the CETA agreement does not apply to the government’s opposition. On the other hand, Minister of Economic Affairs, Sigmar Gabriel, has declared the negotiations on TTIP practically unsuccessful. Chancellor Angela Merkel, the EU Commission, and the US have rejected this presentation. Advocates of the agreements hope to create many jobs on both sides of the Atlantic.

In Germany too, criticism of CETA has intensified once again. A complaint was filed with the Federal Constitutional Court, signed by 125,000 citizens. There is no doubt that CETA is harmful to democracy and must, therefore, be rejected. Before the Federal Constitutional Court, we want to clarify whether the agreement is still in breach of the Basic Law, “said Foodwatch CEO Thilo Bode.

However, the EU Commission continues to adhere to the agreement. And the opposition is also not so great at the European Parliament. Germany and Austria play a special role here. “The agreement brings clear economic benefits,” says Artis Pabrikis (EPP), the rapporteur of the European Parliament on the free trade agreement CETA. “These benefits are quite substantial because the EU’s prosperity is very much linked to its trading activity and the possibility of a trade. “The agreement would create more jobs and, in particular, support small and medium-sized enterprises which are the backbone of the economy.
On 17 September there will still be protests against TTIP and CETA across Europe. Attac called accordingly in Austria:
“We want to prevent TTIP and CETA as they contain various critical points, such as investor-state arbitration and regulations on regulatory co-operation, which undermine democracy and the rule of law. We want to prevent the reduction of labor, social, environmental, data protection and consumer protection standards in intransparent negotiations, as well as deregulating public services (eg water supply) and cultural property. ”


Only In The World Of American Media Is Syria A Civil War

Brandon Turbeville

To the vast majority of Americans, the Syrian crisis (as well as the state of affairs in Iraq, Libya, Yemen, etc.) is merely a distant blip on a cluttered radar screen. Competing with issues affecting an individual’s daily life like wages, taxes, and free trade, that small portion of the American population who hasn’t completely zoned out of the political and current events sphere is increasingly overtaken with the necessities of survival. Those who are able to devote enough time to the Syrian crisis are confronted with an unprecedented onslaught of propaganda demonizing the Syrian government and the Syrian president as “killing his own people,” “brutal,” and “genocidal.” The Syrian people are also victims of the propaganda war as being obsessed with religion, divided, and opposed to their government.

As they are presented by the U.S. media, the Syrian people, like most other people across the world are completely dehumanized. In American media, Syrians are not human. They are numbers. 100 died today. 86 died the day before. Syrians are not mothers or sons. They are not fathers or little children, grandparents. They are blips on a screen and data in a spreadsheet. At least, this is how they are presented to an increasingly hardened American public, a nation that is becoming more and more desensitized to death, destruction, and degradation both at home and abroad.

Having recently concluded a trip to the Middle East, I can safely say that the claims made by Western media are the opposite of the truth.

While my visit centered in Lebanon, we had frequent opportunities to talk with ordinary Syrian citizens either visiting Lebanon or fleeing the ravages of the war in their home country. Indeed, Syrians and Syrian refugees were plentiful in Beirut and many would openly speak about the horrors visited upon them by the West’s proxy war and their trials outside Syria.

What is so important about the fact that these Syrians were being interviewed in Lebanon is the unique benefit of talking with someone not living in their home country because one knows with relative certainty that the person speaking has nothing to lose or gain by giving a false perception of the government. After all, one of the frequent accusations leveled by the Western media is that, whenever one speaks to a Syrian actually living in Syria is that they are handicapped by that person’s fear of retribution from the Syrian government. According to this train of thought, if a man criticized Assad in Syria, he might be subject to arrest and then, of course, torture, execution, and “barrel bombs.”

But that is not the case in Lebanon. In Lebanon, even the most vocal anti-Assad Syrian can speak his mind and be safely out of Assad’s reach. Indeed, even out of ear shot by the Syrian government. A Syrian in Lebanon can speak his piece and do so safely in the knowledge that the alleged “brutal dictator” cannot reach him.

That being said, out of all the Syrians I met and spoke to – refugees and visitors, Muslim and Christian, male and female – not one of them supported the “rebels” and all of them – 100% – fully supported their government and Bashar al-Assad. These individuals had nothing but hate for the terrorists and nothing but love for Assad and the Syrian government.

This point needs to be stressed. These individuals were not under threat of a tyrant ready to arrest them if they spoke out against him. They were free of Assad. They could spit on his portrait if they wanted and there is nothing the Syrian government can do to them. Instead, they expressed an incredible amount of pride in their country, their government, and their President.

So, with that in mind, if Assad and the Syrian government are “barrel bombing” their own citizens, committing genocide against the Syrian people, and killing civilians indiscriminately, and if Syrians are free to speak their mind about Assad in Lebanon, why couldn’t I find one Syrian who wanted Assad to “step down” or for terrorists to bring them the “freedom and democracy” the West keeps yapping on about? Perhaps I was looking in the wrong places or perhaps the information coming from Western governments and their media mouthpieces are simply propaganda. Personally, I’ll put my money on the latter.

One striking aspect of Beirut in the context of the Syrian crisis is that one does not necessarily have to seek out the Syrians in order to speak to them. If one only wears a necklace, t-shirt, or bracelet with the Syrian flag, they will come to you. Any indication of solidarity with their country, especially exhibited by a Westerner (even better, an American) and a man who speaks only one word of English will stop whatever he is doing so that he can have a conversation with the foreigner, even if that conversation is done by body language hand gestures, broken English, interpreters, or google translate alone.

Others more skilled in the English language are willing to have long discussions about their experiences, their support for the government, and their hatred for the terrorists infecting their country. They would tell tales of watching people they knew killed in front of them and having lost family or very close friends at the hands of America’s “moderates.” Indeed, in Syria, as well as in the diaspora of the last 5 years, it seems impossible to speak with a single Syrian who has not lost someone close to them.

The sheer magnitude of the crisis is unimaginable in scale, much in the way that the horrors inflicted upon the Syrian people by America’s democracy loving cannibals are beyond the comprehension of most Western audiences. But despite all the bloodshed, loss, and terror perpetrated on Syria by the United States, the Syrian spirit remains and the Syrian people remain some of the kindest, friendliest, and most hospitable people on the face of the earth.

In addition, Syrians remain a seemingly highly informed audience despite the fact that their country has been crippled by warfare for the past five years and that they themselves have been turned in to refugees. Knowledge not only of their own situation, but about the players behind it and the developments taking place in Europe and America is common and, while American audiences watch the 24 hours news cycle in utter befuddlement as to the events taking place in Syria, Syrians are profoundly aware of just who is responsible for the crisis their country is facing.

While Americans chalk the crisis up to the “they have been fighting for thousands of years” line or accept the propaganda that Syria is facing a civil war, Syrians know that what they are facing is a proxy war against their government, against their very way of life, and against Russia. Syrians are fully aware of the fact that the terrorists beheading their way across the country are funded by Saudi Arabia, facilitated by Turkey and Israel, and trained by the United States. They are fully aware that there are no “moderates” fighting against the Syrian government and that the United States is responsible for creating the ISIS terror organization it is claiming to fight.

All of this may come as a surprise to Americans but, in Syria, it is well-known.

With that in mind, it is an extraordinary thing that Syrians can welcome foreigners visiting their country with such patience and forgiveness. It is truly amazing that Syrian refugees struggling to survive in a foreign country is willing to sit with a citizen of the very country that destroyed his home and killed his family members, smoke hookah with him, and discuss his homeland. It is an unbelievable act of understanding and forgiveness for a man not to judge an American as the enemy and to separate the American people from their government. I was personally struck by the genuine kindness shown to me by people who have been given every legitimate reason to do otherwise.

What the United States is doing to Syria is truly shameful and immoral but, despite the horrors the U.S. and NATO countries have visited upon Syria, the people have refused to give in.

As Mark Twain said, “Damascus has seen all that has ever occurred on earth, and still she lives. She has looked upon the dry bones of a thousand empires, and will see the tombs of a thousand more before she dies Judging by the people I met, I am inclined to agree with him.




At the heart of the normalization of relations between Turkey and Russia, the activities of the United States in the direction of Turkey have increased in recent days. In addition, these activities are increasing proportionally to the improvement of Russian-Turkish relations.

Western media and Turkish opposition sources do not stop reporting on “Russian aggression” in Syria. It is already commonplace. One of the widespread reports in the Western media is alleged air attack by Russian aircrafts on front-line Turkish special forces, killing dozens of Turkish soldiers.

As usual, Russia was held responsible even though the Russian aerospace force did not operate in this region (in the north of the Syrian governorial Aleppo). According to a silent agreement between the sides, this area is under the control of aircraft of the US-led coalition.

It seems as if the United States was in a state of tense relations between Russia and Turkey, and Washington is now making great efforts to bring about a new Russian-Turkish confrontation.

On 24 November a Russian SU-24 front bomber was shot down by a Turkish F-16 fighter jet. However, we should not forget that this provocation was supported by reconnaissance data from a group of US satellites and Boeing E-3 AWACS of the US Air Force.

Measured against the means used, the decision to attack the Russian jet was not taken in Ankara. Most likely, the Turkish President, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, gave only the consent to this provocation, the belief that the Russian aerospace forces are too much hindering the Turkish interests. However, he should not think that his partner from overseas is concerned about the interests of Turkey.

On 16 July a military coup took place in Turkey. If Erdogan had not been so determined, and his opponents had been so, the event would have led to a mass uprising in the army whose grudge against the government had long developed into naked hatred. All this would have remained an internal affair of Turkey, but it turned out that the power structures in the country were mainly controlled by US military and the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). The influence of the CIA was particularly strong on the Turkish Air Force. Most of the arrests were carried out on the Incirlik Air Force Base, where US aircraft are stationed. The pilot, who shot the Russian bomber last fall, was among the arrested.

After the coup attempt was smashed and the first data were analyzed, Erdogan realized that the United States did not want a stable Turkey and the relations between Ankara and Moscow began to change slowly. Recently, chances for a partnership between Russia and Turkey on the situation in Syria, the most serious problem, were marked. Some paragraphs of the incomplete agreement between Russia and the United States were in the interest of Turkey. As a result, it was quite realistic to achieve a balance of interests for the Syrian governor Aleppo.

While the attitude of the US towards Turkey is very clear, the US authorities are again trying to force Ankara to defend the interests of the West in the region. They make plans for a joint “attack on ar-Raqqa” and put pressure on the Syrian government. In this way, Turkey will inevitably collide with the interests of Russia, according to Washington. The Turkish authorities should decide whether to continue to implement the “orders” of the United States, or to conduct a dialogue on Syria with Russia, which is interested in a stable Middle East.



The US have not learned from their mistakes!

Secretary of State John Kerry called Friday for Russia and Syria to face a war crimes investigation into their attacks on Syrian civilians, further illustrating the downward spiral in relations between Washington and Moscow.

It is very ironical that just the US shall draw the Russians and the Syrians into the court for war crimes. It seems like a joke, but of course it is a continuation of a game where the US is loosing control.

How can a country have in the last 20 years, been attacking so many other countries, in the name of “war against terrorists” which have resulted in thousands and thousands of civilian casualties, come and speak about war crimes? Thus the United States newer see what they are up to. Do the newer look back what their criminal acts against the people in this world? In the last 15 years only, have the American war machine been involved in the tremendous killing of the as called terrorists? It has without any distinction killed civilians, children, at the same time as the war on terror was going on. The US has called thus killed, collateral dammishs, which is a finer word for civilians. It is hypocritical to talk about the Russians and Syrians of killing civilians on purpose. Of course, there is always more civilian killed than military, and in Syria is no different. It is a great disaster that this war has been going on for more than five years. All talk about a peace agreement has been neglected by the terrorists and by the United States. It becomes more and more clear that the United States has no interests in a piece because they are supporting the terrorists, who are fighting against the Syrian government. The US has always had the goal to undermine the Syrian leader and install a government which is more US, Israel-friendly.

All the surrounding countries, like Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Israel have all their fingers in this proxy war and are supporting the terrorists.

The United States are always talking about the Free Syrian Army, but nobody has until today seen any concrete representatives of this army. How are they? What is their aim? Why are the not coming forward and represent their army, and their program how they want to see the new Syria to be build. It is a fas to talk about peace if the American are playing such a double game with the people of Syria.

The only way to finishing this catastrophic war is the play with open cards and not sending weapons to the terrorists, which is well known the US is doing, together with Turkey and the Arab countries.

Let’s talk about a real peace in Syria, and not accusing each other of war crimes, because all of the involved parties are killing civilians, in one or an other way. The terrorists, supported by the US are also very brutal against the civilians, and are using them as shield against the Russian and Syrians attack. If that is not a ware crime, then I do not now what war crime is.

This war is for the United States a game to control the Middle East, and their oil. Nothing is sad about that by the Europeans, which are directly playing with the US, under the pressure of NATO. If the European countries are more independent, they should have the power to stop the war, and at the same time stop all the refugees, who are fleeing the country.


The Barrel Bomb Conundrum

Much has been said about the Barrel Bomb in Syria. Here is a former Ambassador to Uzbekistan Craig Murrays explanation why he prefers Barrel Bomb against the conventional military bombs from the US army.

Virtually every mainstream media article or broadcast on the United States aerial massacre of Syrian government troops, manages to work in a reference to barrel bombs as though this in some way justifies or mitigates the US action.

It is a fascinating example of a propaganda meme. Barrel bombs are being used by Syrian government forces, though on a pretty small scale. They are an improvised weapon made by packing conventional explosive into a beer barrel. They are simply an amateur version of a conventional weapon, and they are far less “effective” – meaning devastating – than the professionally made munitions the UK and US are dropping on Syria, or supplying to the Saudis to kill tens of thousands of civilians in Yemen, or to Israel to drop on children in Gaza.

If a bomb were to drop near me, I would much prefer it to be a barrel bomb as it would be less likely to kill me than the UK and US manufactured professional variety. If, however my guts were to be eviscerated by flying hunks of white hot metal, I would not particularly care what kind of bomb it was. The blanket media use of “barrel bomb” as though it represents something uniquely inhumane is a fascinating example of propaganda, especially set beside the repeated ludicrous claims that British bombs do not kill civilians.

It is of course only part of the media distortion around the Syria debacle. Western intervention is aimed at supporting various Saudi backed jihadist militias to take over the country, irrespective of the fact that they commit appalling atrocities. These the media label “democratic forces”. At the same time, we are attacking other Saudi controlled jihadists on the grounds that they are controlled by the wrong kind of Saudi. You see, chopping off the heads of dissidents and gays is OK if you are one of the Saudis who directly controls the Saudi oil resources. It is not OK if you do it freelance and are one of the Saudis who is merely acting at the covert behest of the other Saudis who control the Saudi oil resources.

I do hope that is clear.




Victory for Saudi Arabia: Obama stops right of action for 9/11

US President Obama has vetoed a bill inserted, with the could accuse the victims of 9/11 against Saudi Arabia. Obama said such a law, the sovereignty of Saudi Arabia would be violated. Saudi Arabia is the main financier of the Islamist mercenaries in Syria.

US President Barack Obama has a veto prevents law for justice for victims of the terrorist attacks of September 11 2001th. According to the law about survivors could directly accuse the government of Saudi Arabia. According to Obama, this would violate the sovereignty of Saudi Arabia and cause also could befall a wave of lawsuits across the United States. “I feel deep sympathy for the families of the victims of September 11,” Obama wrote on Friday in support of his action.

Saudi Arabia had threatened in the event that the law comes into force with a massive sell its Treasuries.

Saudi Arabia is the main US ally in the Middle East and supports numerous mercenaries and Islamists in Syria to overthrow the government of Bashar al-Assad. The Saudis and the Americans are preparing to build a pipeline that would lead, inter alia through Syria.

Obama feared especially that other countries adopt similar laws and members of the US armed forces can be held responsible for their conduct abroad in court. “We have by far the largest foreign presence in the world,” Obama wrote. In addition, the Government would be in responding to state-run terrorist attacks have their hands tied because suddenly private courts would have involved.

The US Congress had passed the law and could now make the Obama decision to withdraw his hand. For this purpose, a two-thirds majority would be needed.


Utrikes Politiska Institutet har publicerad en artikel av Joel Ahlberg, som arbetar vid Folke Bernadotteakademin.


Artikelns har överskriften: Assads totalitära styre – ett hinder för fred I Syrien.

Vad som man direkt undrar över, hur kan Assad avsiktlig mörda sina egna medborgare, och samtidigt fortsätt att styra ett land utan några medborgare. Under de sista året har man hållit val, ja val under kriget, I Syrien. Visst kan man ifråga sätta valets legitimitet, men resultatet visar att majoriteten av befolkningen som kunde rösta la sin röst på Assad regimen. Man kan alltid kritisera och förneka giltigheten av valet, och att det var manipulerad. Detta är nämligen alltid utgångspunkten för s.k. exporter, som vet, eller tror sig veta, hur ett totalitärt styre “organisera sina egna val”.

Vad som inte nämns av experten på Syrien är följande:

Syrien var innan kriget ett sekulärt land, där man utövade olika religioner utan inblandning av staten. Samtidigt hade man en population som har en högt utbildning av både kvinnor och män. Syrien har en av mellanöstern mest utbildade folk, efter Israel. Alla vet vi att kunskap ger makt, hur kan en despot utbilda sina undersåtar, så att de kan göra en revolution? Landet följde en s.k. Arabiska våren, med en demonstration, som underbyggdes av västmakterna. Detta är utom all tvivel. Det finns hundratals rapporter om detta, vilket naturligtvis inte nämns i väst medierna. Detta land har nu bombads tillbaka till stenåldern, på grund av ett religionskrig, som började efter USA krossade en annan “despot”, och sedan lämnade landet, Irak helt för sig själv.

I hela denna operation, där USA utan urskillning utraderade Irak, även det ett landet med en högutbildad befolkning, och skicka dem tillbaka till stenåldern. Sen lämnade man landet efter att först förstöra hela dess infrastruktur, dess kulturminnen, och skickade ett stort antal människor på flykt till Europa. Irak som land kan inte återuppbyggas, utan hjälp av omvärlden, och där bör USA vara den största bidragsgivaren. Detta krig var en krigsförbrytelse, enligt FN revolutionen. Var är personerna som ställs inför rätta?

Sedan kan vi nämna Libyen, även detta land med den högsta utbildade befolkningen I Afrika. Både kvinnor och män, fick fri utbildning, fri medicin m.m. Gaddafi var en nagel i öga på USA och Storbritannien, medan Italien köpte oljan från dem.. Bar några veckor innan Gaddafi blev mödad, hälsad Blair på honom, och kramade om honom. Detta var en “verklig vän”?

Att nu riktar sina blickar mot Syrien, med detta lands kultur, är naturligtvis bara en fortsättningen om kontrollen av oljan i mellanöstern. Vilka är det nu som styr oljan i Irak, i Libyen, inte är det libyerna eller irakierna, nej det är det amerikanska oljebolagen, som EXXON, Chevron m.m. vilka är det som vill ha en oljeledning till Europa över Syrien, naturligtvis bara USA. På detta sätt kan man störa  Ryssland olja leveranser till Europa vilket försvaga deras ekonomi.

De västliga demokratierna påstår alltid att man vill stödja demokratier. Frågan man bör ställa sig: ”Börja med Saudi Arabien, Qatar, Kuwait, Förenade Arabemiraten, Dubai”. Istället så håller man dessa diktatoriska länder under armarna, genom att skicka vapen till dem, för att döda sin egen befolkning, om de skulle göra uppror (se Bahrain). Eller så anfaller man och bombadera ursinningslöst, som Saudi Arabien, en av de fattigaste länderna på jorden, nämligen Jemen, för att folket har avsatt sin president. En president som Saudi Arabien eller USA inte vill kännas vid. Kanske därför att han inte dansa efter deras pipa.

Att Syrien har varit alltid mycket nära förbunden med Ryssland, det är inte så som Joel Ahlberg påstår. Syrierna bad Ryssland om hjälp, att bekämpa IS rebellerna.

Nu är de dock så att väst pressen genomför en stor hatoperation mot Ryssland, på grund av Krim. Även där far man med lögner. Enligt internationell lag så har invånarna rätt att rösta vilket land de vill tillhöra, och det var en överväldigande majoritet som röstade för Ryssland. Det fans inga Kalasjnikov beväpnade soldater som tvingade befolkningen att rösta för Ryssland. 80 procent av Krim invånarna är ryssar.

Jag betackar mig för sådana exporter som Joel Ahlberg, som bygger hela sin berättelse på en läkare som flytt från Syrien, och informera så osaklig.





The Ukrainian government has refused to comply with the Minsk agreements, and said that nobody can dictate to Ukraine any conditions.

 The Ukrainian government has denied representatives of the ‘Normandy Quartet’ from Germany and France in the implementation of the Minsk agreements, a MP from the presidential bloc, Sergey Kunitsyn, confirmed such an interpretation of the position, expressed by the Ukrainian President at a meeting with the foreign ministers of France and Germany.

According to him, Germany and France cannot dictate to Ukraine any conditions.

“Nobody can dictate to us the conditions under which we return our territories – neither France nor Germany nor Great Britain. I am advocating that they should remember the Budapest Memorandum, which guarantees a territorial integrity, just in case. It really was an international instrument. I think that we cannot speak about any changes of the Constitution,” Kunitsyn said, speaking on the 112 TV channel.

At the same time, a Verkhovna Rada deputy of the Bloc of Petro Poroshenko, Vadim Denisenko, said that during the talks with Petro Poroshenko in Kiev, German Foreign minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier and French Minister of Foreign Affairs Jean-Marc Ayrault have actually demanded from Ukraine the same that previously was required by Russian President Vladimir Putin.

“If to simplify words that the Foreign Ministers of France and Germany said in Kiev, it can be reduced to the formula ‘truce – special status – elections in Donbass – control of the border’. The offer of Europeans is more than a serious blow to our positions,” Denisenko wrote in his blog.

However, according to the representative of the Petro Poroshenko’s Bloc, Kiev is not going to agree with the European requirements.

“This does not mean that we should give up. We have no other option than to follow the formula ‘truce – control of the border – elections’,” the deputy announced a strategy of Kiev.

“In order to understand what to do next, we should try to find out what will happen if we agree or not to agree to the proposal of the French-German assault,” Denisenko noted. “We send our European partners to hell (culturally) and insist that firstly, we should get control of the border. Than it threatens us? Will they lift sanctions against Putin? Well, here we are powerless. Will Putin begin a full-scale operation? We are not immune from this. We just need to play for time and to require new safeguards, new agreements, and new memorandums. And to prepare for a war…,” he concluded.

Meanwhile, a former head of the Donetsk region, Sergei Taruta, noted that Germany and France are starting to put pressure on Ukraine, requiring implementation of the Minsk agreements. According to him, nobody will agree to any new format or agreements.

“Nobody even envisage another format. This is a clear position of all participants of the ‘Normandy Format’ – Germany and France. Naturally, now they will rigidly insist that Ukraine, for its part, also should ensure compliance with the covenants, which are registered in the Minsk agreement,” he said, speaking on the 112 TV channel.

Taruta also noted that German and French representatives are going to visit the front line in order to inspect the work of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE).

At the same time, Moscow hopes that the visit of German Foreign minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier to the Donbass will increase pressure on Kiev in order to make the Ukrainian government to perform the Minsk agreements, a spokeswoman for the Russian Foreign Ministry, Maria Zakharova said on Thursday.

“As for the Steinmeier’s visit to Ukraine, now the main thing is to exert maximum pressure on Kiev on implement of the Minsk agreements. It is very important not to weaken, but to intensify the pressure on Kiev in order to make the government to start to move forward,” Zakharova said.

According to her, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov was discussing this topic with his German counterpart during a number of telephone conversations.

The visit of the Foreign Ministers of Germany and France to Donbass that has been begun today, is the first visit of this kind since the beginning of military operations in the east of Ukraine.