In essence, Lavrov said: "It is possible to judge who wants what in today's Ukrainian leadership by their declarations. ... The main thing for us is [however] the deeds, not the words. And with respect to the deeds, we feel Ukrainian President Poroshenko's commitment to the Minsk Agreements ..." Thus Lavrov appears to be asking his followers not to judge Poroshenko by what he says (and what he says is very "similar" to what everyone else is saying in the junta leadership), but by his "deeds." And the "deed" is Poroshenko's supposed commitment to the Minsk Deal or perhaps "peace," as "felt" by Lavrov. This is what one gets if one connects the beginning and the end of Lavrov's words together, while applying to Lavrov's words what he is asking us not to do: to go by the deeds and not by the words. Even though he admits that it is "possible to judge" what leaders want through what they say.
However, if one looks more carefully in the main middle part of Lavrov's rhetoric or statement, then what one sees is Lavrov's acknowledgement of the power of the Ukrainian leadership's rhetoric and words to be turned into deeds and to guide, direct and produce deeds, and the deeds, listed by Lavrov himself, refute all the supposed "feeling" of Poroshenko's commitment to reaching an agreement and peace. Lavrov actually confirms that the statements (rhetoric) of the Ukrainian leadership, which also includes Poroshenko's, are not only separable from the deeds, but they are also creating these deeds. Moreover, the deeds are as follows: "... expectations are created in the main by the Ukrainian leadership, which, starting from the government takeover and through the following events, has escalated Russophobic sentiments, in fact, has declared war against everything Russian--culture, language, traditions, history, including Russian history on the territory of Ukraine, the history of the Second World War ..."
Thus, Lavrov starts with a premise (importance of judging leaders and their intentions [also] by what they say), which he then rejects: "the main thing is the deeds, not the words," and the deeds, the "main thing," need to be "separated from rhetoric"--the words. This allows him to claim that he does "feel" that Poroshenko is committed to peace, after he just actually confirmed and established the opposite: the Ukrainian leadership ... "has escalated Russophobic sentiments, in fact, has declared war to everything Russian ..." In other words, the "rhetoric" of the Ukrainian leadership, including Poroshenko, is, in fact, a "declaration of war against everything Russian," and this has also changed and produced corresponding attitudes in society, which are no longer just words (hostile words), but also very, very hostile deeds.
This allows for at least three possible inferences:
1. Lavrov's rhetoric is self-refuting in a sense of affirming what is simultaneously negates, thus leaving the reader with a certain freedom to decide which part is false or which part is to be believed.
2. Lavrov's main point was to stress Poroshenko's [and Lavrov's] commitment to the Minsk Agreement regardless of the many clear words and the deeds of Poroshenko himself to the contrary; in the end, all what matters is Lavrov's "feeling" and his last word after confusing the listener so well that he or she no longer follows or is patient enough to think.
3. Or Lavrov tried to say that the Ukrainian leadership, including Poroshenko, is, indeed, waging war against "everything Russian" and that his concluding claim about Poroshenko's supposed commitment to talks and peace is false and should not be taken seriously. But, for some political and diplomatic reasons, Lavrov needed to hide the truth in the middle--for the benefit of a select audience with reading and analytic skills at the level of solid liberal arts graduate programs.
«О том, кто чего хочет в рядах нынешнего украинского руководства, можно судить по их заявлениям. Хотя очень часто они делают похожие заявления … Например, по НАТО, объясняя это тем, что общество «заведено» и необходимо отвечать его ожиданиям. Но эти ожидания создаются во многом украинским руководством, которое, начиная с государственного переворота и продолжая последующими событиями, нагнетало русофобские настроения, по сути, объявило войну всему русскому — культуре, языку, традициям, истории, в том числе русской истории на территории Украины, истории Второй мировой войны», - указал Лавров в интервью газете «Коммерсантъ».
«Но есть, конечно, вещи, которые мы отделяем от риторики. Для нас главное — не слова, а дела. Что касается дел — мы чувствуем приверженность президента Украины Петра Порошенко минским договоренностям...."
If the reader is either confused or sticking to his or her preconceived ideas of what any statement should mean regardless of what it actually says, then Sergey Lavrov's additional statement also from today may (not) help. Among other things, Lavrov also stated as reported by RT:
"It is not about who wins the war ... [everyone in Ukraine and Donbass] need[s] to agree on one constitution that would allow all to live under one government ..." According to Lavrov, another thing that needs to be considered and agreed upon is how to distribute tax revenue. ... Lavrov also said that sanctions against Russia came as a reaction to Moscow’s efforts in securing the Minsk peace agreements. ... “The September wave of sanctions was introduced as a ‘reward’ for Russia’s role in the Minsk agreements and more generally for its part around organizing the meeting [in Minsk], which in large part happened because of the role played by [Russian President] Vladimir Putin and the Russian Federation,” Lavrov said.
So what one learns about the war from Lavrov? That the war is not about winning. But it is about "allowing all to live under one government," and one of the key questions to settle is how to distribute tax revenues with the Banderite junta and the ruling Ukrainian oligarchs.