"The separatists' refusal to take part in any talks and their repeated threats to launch a major offensive express a new level of cynicism. They are playing irresponsibly with thousands of lives," Steinmeier said.
Steinmeier added that all those with influence over the separatists must now put a stop to the warmongering. He said that Russia in particular must now show that it is serious about implementing the Minsk Protocol and the Berlin Declaration.
The Foreign Minister also reiterated the German Government's commitment to reaching a political settlement to the conflict: "The fact that we are faced with setbacks does not absolve us of the responsibility to continue seeking diplomatic solutions."
Steinmeier said that all efforts were now aimed at finding political settlement to the conflict.
"We must not abandon the field to insurgents. Too much is at stake. This is why we are continuing to work hard on urging the signatories of the Minsk Protocol and the Berlin Declaration to actually implement what has been agreed and to finally start withdrawing heavy weapons," he said.