Foreign Minister Lavrov: Geneva agreement is not being fulfilled as Ukraine is not taking appropriate steps to defuse the prevailing crisis; five people were killed and eight injured in a shoot-out in eastern Ukraine's Sloviansk region; Putin and Merkel d
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  • According to reports, Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has said that Ukraine is not taking appropriate steps to defuse the prevailing crisis and therefore the Geneva agreement is not being fulfilled. He added that all extremists should be disarmed. 1

    In another development, according to reports, in a major setback to the four party Geneva agreement signed on April 17, five people were killed and eight injured in a shoot-out in eastern Ukraine's Sloviansk region on April 20. It has been alleged that these pro-federal activists were gunned down by Ukraine’s ultranationalist ‘Right Sector’. 2

    Russian President Vladimir Putin and German Chancellor Angela Merkel have discussed, over telephone on April 25, the situation in Ukraine including Kiev's unwillingness to fulfill the Geneva agreements of April 17. 3

    Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has called for an investigation into allegations of the involvement of American proxy intelligence company Greystone in Ukraine and believed that such engagement can have dangerous repercussions. 4
    Germany and France have expressed readiness to contribute to the de-escalation of tensions in Ukraine. 5

    Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has said that attempts to isolate Russia are absolutely futile. He argued that Russia’s size, position and nature of power and political alliances willthawrt any western attempt to isolate it. 6

    According to reports, Gazprom and Turkey plan to discuss measures to increase the annual capacity of the Blue Stream gas pipeline from 16 billion cu m to 19 billion cu m. This issue was riased during a meeting between Gazprom Export Chief Alexander Medvedev and Turkish Minister of Energy and Natural Resources Taner Yildiz held in Ankara on April 21. 7

    Reports noted that Gazprom CEO Alexei Miller has met with Austria’s OMV Director-General Gerhard Royce on April 22 wherein they discussed the possibility of building an extension of South Stream pipeline to Austria. 8

    Russian and Iranian Foreign Ministers Sergei Lavrov and Javad Zarif have discussed in Moscow on April 22 the Iranian nuclear program and regional security issues. The ministers met on the sidelines of a conference of the Caspian littoral states’ foreign policy chiefs. 9

    The situation on the Tajik-Afghan border was the focus of a meeting of the Committee of Security Council Secretaries from the member countries of Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) held in Grozny on April 23. The participants discussed measures needed to help Tajikistan strengthen its border with Afghanistan. 10

    Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko has upheld the status of Russian language in Belarus in his annual State of the Nation Address on April 22. 11

    According to reports, Armenian Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian has said that his country has implemented most of the issues in the roadmap for joining the Customs Union of Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan. 12

    The Foreign Ministers of Russia and Mozambique, Sergei Lavrov and Oldemiro Baloi, have met in Moscow on April 21 to discuss prospects for deepening cooperation. Mozambique had abstained from voting in the March 27 UN General Assembly resolution on Ukraine. 13

    Russian President Vladimir Putin has suggested creating a unified system of naval bases in Russia’s Arctic which includes reinforcement of the border guard forces’ naval group and building military infrastructure. 14

    Russia’s Finance Ministry has said that inflation is likely to reach 7.2-7.3 per cent in April 2014 and touch 7.5 per cent during the period of May and June. 15

    Russia’s resident population reached has 143.66 million as of January 1, 2014, having increased by 800,000 since the last all-Russia census conducted in 2010. 16