Leading diplomats from Ukraine, the European Union, Russia, and the United States have agreed to take immediate steps towards easing tensions in Ukraine.
The four main parties involved in the Ukraine crisis gathered in Geneva for talks today and said that they will work to establish what Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov called "a broad national dialogue to ensure that people's rights are protected".
The agreement, reached after seven hours of negotiation, requires all sides to refrain from violence, intimidation or provocative actions. It calls for the disarming of all illegally armed groups and for control of buildings seized by pro-Russian separatists during the protests to be turned back over to authorities.
Geneva talks: the main points
- Foreign Minister Lavrov also said that sides had agreed to grant amnesty to pro- Russian protesters who had participated in the uprising against the Ukrainian government in Kiev unless they had been found guilt of 'capital crimes'.
- US secretary of state John Kerry confirmed that all sides had "strongly condemned and rejected all expressions of extremism, racism and religious intolerance, including anti- semitism."
- It was also agreed that Kiev's plans to reform its constitution and transfer more power from the central government to regional authorities must be inclusive, t transparent and accountable - including through the creation of a broad national dialogue.
- Teams from the Organisation of Security and Cooperation in Europe will be tasked with helping Ukraine authorities and local communities comply with the requirements outlined in the agreement.