20 September 2019, 13:06
LPR hopes prisoner exchange date will be named at Minsk talks on October 1 - foreign minister
LUGANSK, September 20 (Lugansk Media Centre) - The Lugansk People’s Republic hopes that it will be possible to agree the prisoner exchange date at the Contact Group meeting in Minsk scheduled for October 1, the LPR Foreign Minister, the Republic’s envoy to the Minsk talks Vladislav Deinego said at a press briefing at the Lugansk Media Centre.
“Regrettably, Ukraine is delaying the process (prisoner exchange - eds Lugansk Media Centre),” Deinego said. “In the summer they asked to give them six weeks to complete legal clearance of the persons due to the exchanged, but after the end of the six week period, they requested another six weeks.”
He said that the LPR was expecting progress in the prisoner exchange issue.
“We hope that at the next Contact Group meeting on October 1 we’ll be able to address specifics in the prisoner exchange issue Perhaps, we’ll reach an understanding on when the exchange might take place,” the LPR diplomat said.
Earlier, the LPR representative to the Contact Group humanitarian subgroup, head of the LPR working group on prisoner exchange Olga Kobtseva said that Ukraine was deliberately delaying the prisoner swap.
Prisoner exchange is a key point of the Minsk Agreements.
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.
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