EU summit start delayed due to Minsk talks, says spokesman [Update]

A European Union summit in Brussels on Thursday has been delayed because of marathon Ukraine peace talks involving the French, German and Ukrainian leaders, a spokesman for EU president Donald Tusk said.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Hollande spent the night in talks in the Belarussian capital with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

“Start of informal EUCO expected at 1500 hours (1400 GMT) today,” Tusk’s spokesman Preben Aamann said on Twitter.

The summit had been due to start at 1200 GMT with a briefing by Poroshenko, followed by talks on terrorism and the showdown with Greece over its demands to renegotiate its huge bailout.

But the Minsk negotiations on ending the 10-month conflict in Ukraine dragged on through the night before the leaders emerged early Thursday, saying a ceasefire deal had been reached.