Swiss President, Rõivas Discuss Ukraine in Tallinn

Didier Burkhalter (left) and Foreign Minister Urmas Paet. (Courtesy of the Estonian Ministry of Foreign Affairs)
8/26/2014 12:33 PM
Category: Politics

Swiss President Didier Burkhalter was in Estonia to meet Prime Minister Taavi Rõivas and Foreign Minister Urmas Paet on Monday, with security and Ukraine on top of the agenda.

Burkhalter and Rõivas both said a solution to the Ukraine crisis is the main aim of European and international diplomacy, with the Swiss President saying it is not an easy task, as dealing with Russia is complicated.

Paet said the violence in eastern Ukraine has affected millions, and more than 400,000 have left their homes. He said it is of the utmost importance for Ukraine to regain control of its entire territory, including its borders.

He said the OSCE, which is chaired by Switzerland, must help find a solution.

Rõivas thanked Switzerland for help with the recent kidnapping ordeal in eastern Ukraine, where four OSCE observers, including one Estonian and one Swiss citizen, were held by separatists. The four were in the country to monitor Ukraine's presidential election in May, and were released in June.

Switzerland has been one of the few western nations not to impose sanctions on Russia, saying it is important to preserve the country's doctrine of neutrality.


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