Members of the nationalist movements light flares during a rally marking Defense of the Homeland Day in center Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday, Oct. 14, 2019. Some 15,000 far-right and nationalist activists protested in the Ukrainian capital, chanting "Glory to Ukraine" and waving yellow and blue flags. President Volodymyr Zelenskiy urged participants to avoid violence and warned of potential “provocations” from those who want to stoke chaos. (AP Photo/Efrem Lukatsky)

Ukraine peace plan in limbo after inconclusive talks

October 15, 2019 - 9:58 am

MINSK, Belarus (AP) — A plan for to pull back heavy weapons from both Ukrainian and separatist forces in eastern Ukraine has remained in limbo after another round of inconclusive talks.

Ukraine's newly-elected President Volodymyr Zelenskiy has sought to revive a long-stalled peace plan by pressing for a troop withdrawal and local elections in the nation's rebel-held east, where a five-year conflict between the separatists and Ukrainian troops has killed more than 13,000 people since 2014.

Zelenskiy has insisted the pullback of troops and an election plan are necessary for calling a summit with leaders of Russia, France and Germany, but he has faced stiff resistance from ultranationalist groups who call his moves a capitulation to Russia.

Envoys from Russia, Ukraine and Russia-backed separatists again failed to reach agreement on the troops' pullback at a Tuesday's meeting in Minsk.