Keep in mind that Russia does not want the occupied Donbass territories as part of Russia. Rather, Putin wants the self-proclaimed People’s Republics of Donetsk and Luhansk to be independent provinces within a unitary Ukraine that exercises veto power over major domestic and foreign policy decisions. Such an arrangement would spell the end of Ukraine as a state independent of Russia. Hopes for a peaceful settlement coming out of the Minsk negotiations are therefore futile, with no ground for compromise. Russia does not want the Donbass, and Ukraine will not accept a Donbass under rebel control. It’s that simple–although Europe’s peacemakers have trouble accepting that fact.
go to forbes,com