4 December 2018, 17:45



Kiev again trying to drag Russia into Donbas prisoner exchange - Kobtseva

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LUGANSK, December 4 (Lugansk Media Centre) - Ukrainian officials at the meetings of the Contact Group and its subgroups are again trying to drag Russia into Donbass prisoner exchange, Lugansk People’s Republic representative at the Contact Group humanitarian subgroup, head of the LPR working group on prisoner exchange Olga Kobtseva told the Lugansk Media Centre after negotiations in the Belarussian capital on Tuesday.

“Today, Ukraine brought forward an obviously fake proposal concerning prisoner exchange,” Kobtseva said. It called for the release of Kiev supporters in the Republics in exchange for the release of “Ukrainian political prisoners” allegedly kept in Russia, and Russian citizens kept in Ukraine.”

She made it clear that “the Minsk talks have nothing to do with political prisoners.”

“The exchange of the persons detained in Russia and Ukraine has to be settled between Moscow and Kiev,” Kobtseva said.

The Donbass Republics are committed to the “all verified for all verified” prisoner exchange formula agreed upon in Minsk without dividing them into certain groups on which Ukraine has been insisting.

Prisoner exchange is a key point of the Minsk Agreements.


“As for the shelling of the Stanitsa Luganskaya crossing point , Ukraine denied its involvement saying no strikes had been delivered in the past few days,” Kobtseva said. Meanwhile, the LPR representatives at the Joint Centre for Control and Coordination did record the shelling of the only crossing point in the LPR responsibility zone.

“The strikes aimed to disrupt the operation of the only crossing point,” the LPR representative said.

Kiev acted in a similar manner in the situation with a group of Ukrainian commandoes who had hit a friendly mine in an attempt to break into the LPR territory in the Sokolniki area.

“They deny the breakthrough attempt listing the Ukrainian servicemen whose body was retrieved by our militia, as missing,” Kobtseva said.

The Package of Measures for the Implementation of the Minsk Agreements was adopted by the Contact Group on Ukraine on February 12, 2015 and supported by member states of the Normandy Four (Germany, Russia, Ukraine and France). The UN Security Council approved the document by Resolution 2202 and called upon all the sides to ensure full implementation of the Package of Measures.

The document provides for comprehensive ceasefire, withdrawal of all heavy weapons from the contact line, starting a dialog on reconstruction of social and economic ties between Kiev and Donbass. It also envisages carrying out constitutional reform in Ukraine providing for decentralization and adopting permanent legislation on a special status of certain areas of the Donetsk and Lugansk regions.

To facilitate the work of the Contact Group, four working groups were set up under its aegis to deal with issues of security, politics, return of internally displaced people and refuges, as well as with social, humanitarian, economic and rehabilitation issues.

LuganskMediaCentre — 04 December — Lugansk