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Ukraine, European Council presidents discuss Crimea "provocations"

Poroshenko insists the OSCE mission should be expanded to include Crimea.

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko and President of the European Council Donald Tusk have discussed the situation in Russia-annexed Crimea over the phone, according to Poroshenko's website.

He briefed Tusk on the cynical provocations of the Russian Federation the occupied Crimea and escalation of its aggressive actions in eastern Ukraine. The counterparts discussed the implementation of the Minsk agreements.

Poroshenko stressed the need to expand the OSCE mission to cover the territory of Crimea as well as to deploy an armed police mission under the aegis of the OSCE in Donbas.

The head of state noted the EU’s decisive reaction to the Russian provocations and escalation of tension is of critical importance.

“After the recent events in Crimea, there should be no illusions about Russia’s intentions. The maintenance and strengthening of sanctions is an effective tool of influence,” Poroshenko said.

Tusk commended the Ukrainian authorities' response to the Russian provocations in Crimea.

He reaffirmed the EU’s unwavered position on the maintenance of sanctions and adamant support for Ukraine.

“We strongly support the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine,” he said.

Tusk underlined Ukraine remains one of the top issues on the EU’s agenda. The EU-Ukraine solidarity in tackling external aggression will be one of the topics during informal meetings of the EU member states in Bratislava, Slovakia, in September.

President Poroshenko reiterated his invitation to Tusk to attend the commemoration of the 75th anniversary of the Babyn Yar tragedy. 

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