World News

Ukraine summons Belarus diplomat over Crimea

KYIV (Reuters) - Ukraine’s foreign ministry summoned a senior Belarusian diplomat over the participation of a representative of Crimea’s occupation administration in a Russia-Belarus regional forum, the ministry said on Thursday.

Kyiv’s relations with Moscow deteriorated in 2014 after Russia annexed the Crimea peninsula from Ukraine and backed pro-Russian separatists in Ukraine’s Donbass region.

“Ukraine considers inadmissible such unfriendly steps by the Belarusian side, which call into question the affiliation to Ukraine of the Russian-occupied Crimea and Sevastopol,” the ministry said in a statement.

The ministry said the Belarusian diplomat reassured Kyiv that Minsk’s official position in support of Ukraine’s territorial integrity had not been changed.

Ukraine’s relations with another neighbour, Belarus, soured when Kyiv condemned the Aug. 9 presidential election in Belarus as neither free nor fair.

Reporting by Pavel Polityuk; Editing by Bernadette Baum