1 August 2019, 17:14



LPR Emergencies Ministry begins Stanitsa bridge area mine check - JCCC

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LUGANSK, August 1 (Lugansk Media Centre) – The Lugansk People’s Republic Emergencies Ministry began to check the terrain around the Stanitsa Luganskaya bridge for mines prior to launching repairs of the ruined section, the LPR Office at the Joint Centre for Control and Coordination reported.

“On August 1, LPR Emergencies Ministry specialists assisted by the LPR Office at the JCCC launched a mine check in the bridge area and the adjacent territory in Disengagement Zone No 1 as part of the accords reached by the Contact Group in Minsk on July 31, ahead of the repairs of the bridge span ruined by Ukrainian armed formations,” the report said.

“To ensure the safety of civilians in the crossing point area, its operation can be suspended for the period of demining operations. The proposals regarding opening hours were forwarded to Ukraine,” the JCCC added.

The LPR will notify civilians about the suspension of crossing point operation through its Office at the JCCC and mass media outlets.

The LPR representative in the humanitarian subgroup, head of the LPR working group for prisoner exchange Olga Kobtseva said that Kiev, in the course of the humanitarian subgroup meeting in Minsk, agreed to coordinate with the LPR all the moves towards restoring the Stanitsa Luganskaya bridge across the Severskiy Donets river.

Earlier, LPR Foreign Minister, the Republic’s envoy to the Minsk talks Vladislav Deinego said that the Office of Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky agreed that unilateral bridge repairs on Stanitsa Luganskaya bridge were inadmissible.

LPR Head Leonid Pasechnik said  that the Republic would view any unilateral actions by Kiev on the Stanitsa Luganskaya bridge as an act of aggression.

The LPR Foreign Ministry reminded “Mr Zelensky that the bridge across the Severskiy Donets in Stanitsa Luganskaya was on the contact line approved by the Minsk Memorandum dated September 19, 2014, so any unilateral actions by Ukraine regarding bridge repairs or bridge operation can be viewed as gross violation of the Minsk Agreements.” The LPR authorities also said that they could “repair both the LPR and Ukrainian parts of the bridge.”

LPR Foreign Minister Vladislav Deinego said that Kiev’s statement about the readiness to restore the Stanitsa Luganskaya bridge ruined by Kiev forces were “unrealistic” and were an attempt to promote itself, so the Republic was ready to repair the structure using the project offered by the International Committee of the Red Cross.

Earlier, LPR Head Leonid Pasechnik ordered LPR authorities to address the issue of Stanitsa Luganskaya bridge repairs based on the ICRC project.

Currently there is only one official checkpoint at the line of contact in LPR area of responsibility in Donbass and it is accessible via the bridge in vicinity of Stanitsa Luganskaya. Only pedestrian traffic here is possible thanks to temporary conduit, as the bridge was blown up by Ukrainian forces in early 2015. LPR has been continuously proposing to rebuild it.

Kiev has disrupted the finalising the International Committee of the Red Cross bridge restoration project from the very beginning of the discussion demanding that its width be limited in order to prevent the passage of armoured vehicles. The LPR repeatedly pointed out that the Ukrainian demands were ridiculous as the parameters proposed by the Republic (three metres in width and a load capacity of five tons) made military hardware traffic impossible, yet they met the minimum requirements to the passage of ambulances. Ambulance service is needed due to to many cases of people collapsing in long queues and regular fatalities.

In September 2016, representatives of Ukraine, the LPR, the DPR, Russia the OSCE initialled a framework agreement on partial pullback of forces in Donbass. The document provides for three disengagement areas around Zolotoye, Stanitsa Luganskaya and Petrovskoe (DPR territory). The disengagement has been completed in all the three areas by now. In Stanitsa Luganskaya, Kiev failed to pull back its forces  more than 80 times.

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.

LuganskMediaCentre — 01 August — Lugansk