MOSCOW, May 21 -- Moscow on Wednesday expressed reservations about a document on the normalization of situation in Ukraine passed by Ukraine's parliament.
On Tuesday, Supreme Rada ratified the "Memorandum on Peace and Consent" calling for "restoring law, order and public safety by stopping bloodshed and bringing to justice those responsible for the killings of civilians during mass protests; stopping the anti-terrorist operations in Ukraine's southeast; and returning the soldiers involved in anti-terrorist operations to their places of permanent deployment."
The document also urges immediate constitutional reform that will grant more autonomy to regions, a key demand of the protesters in the eastern regions of Donetsk and Lugansk. The two regions declared themselves independent republics on May 11.
"We positively estimate the document's clauses on use of force, intentions to provide immediate constitutional reform envisaging de-centralization of power, plans to guarantee the regions' financial powers, intention to fight corruption at all levels of the state, and calls for prevention of ... conflicts," the RIA Novosti news agency quoted Deputy Foreign Minister Grigory Karasin as saying.
Still, the diplomat said, the adopted edition of the memorandum omitted initial clauses about Ukraine's non-alignment status. The document also does not guarantee unequivocally the status of the Russian language, Karasin added.
The document said that the state must ensure the rights of minority languages. It pointed at granting the status to the Russian language, but stopped short of giving it the constitutional status, according to Karasin.
If Ukrainian authorities plan to implement all the reforms declared in the memorandum, then they will finally be responding to Moscow's calls, Karasin stressed.
"First, we have to see how it looks on paper. If this is true then it's the development we have been talking about over the past months," he said.
Russia, the United States, the European Union and Ukraine adopted a joint document on the de-escalation of the Ukraine crisis during talks in Geneva on April 17.