On 13th October 2014, Lord Spicer asked Her Majesty’s Government what steps they took to encourage negotiations between the two sides at the start of the conflict in Ukraine. The Bishop of St Albans, the Rt Revd Alan Smith, asked a supplementary question:
The Lord Bishop of St Albans: My Lords, as well as seeking a peaceful resolution to the ongoing conflict in Donetsk and Luhansk, it is vital that we do not forget those Ukrainians who remained in Crimea and now find themselves under the Russian state. Can the Minister tell us what representations have been made on their behalf, and what progress, if any, has been made by the OSCE monitors in gaining access to Crimea?
The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Baroness Anelay of St Johns): My Lords, the right reverend Prelate points to a very difficult area indeed from the point of view of the security of those Ukrainians who remain within Crimea. I am certainly aware of discussions that have taken place about trying to ensure that their humanitarian needs may be met. When I was in Geneva I had discussions with the president of the International Committee of the Red Cross and with the Ukrainian permanent representative to the Human Rights Council about the difficulties faced. However, I do not in any way seek to encourage the right reverend Prelate to believe that the position of the Ukrainians there is anything other than extremely dangerous. I am sure that all efforts are being made to continue to negotiate about their position.