Press release

Foreign Secretary calls for calm in eastern Ukraine

Foreign Secretary William Hague calls for de-escalation of tension in eastern Ukraine ahead of his visit next week.

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The Foreign Secretary, William Hague, said:

I deplore the senseless loss of life in Odessa yesterday and call on all parties to work to restore calm and law and order across the country. We look to the Ukrainian authorities to investigate these events and seek to bring to justice those responsible for them.

It is important that there is an immediate de-escalation of tension in eastern Ukraine. At this critical moment, those responsible for provoking instability, particularly in Russia, must step back and allow the people of Ukraine to prepare for free and fair elections and repair their severely damaged economy. This will be the focus of my talks in Kyiv next week.

I welcome the release of the illegally detained OSCE inspectors in eastern Ukraine. This is a positive step, but it needs to be followed by the immediate release of all remaining hostages held by illegal armed groups in eastern Ukraine.

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Published 3 May 2014