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18 April 2019, 16:21

MILITARY&DEFENCE

Security subgroup begins video conference over Easter ceasefire

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LUGANSK, April 18 (Lugansk Media Centre) - The Contact Group security subgroup has begun a video conference to finalise and agree the Easter ceasefire in Donbass, Lugansk People’s Republic representative in the subgroup Roman Ivanov told the Lugansk Media Centre.

“The video conference has begun,” Ivanov said.

Under earlier plans, the new truce in Donbass had to negotiated during the Contact Group meeting in Minsk on April 10. However, LPR envoy to the Minsk talks, the Republic’s Foreign Minister Vladislav Deinego said at that time that the accord could not be reached because of the destructive position taken by Kiev.

On March 7, the Contact Group security subgroup agreed the “spring ceasefire” in the region starting at 01:01, Moscow time (00:01, Kiev time) on March 8. The LPR People’s Militia said that it was ready to meet the spring ceasefire commitments and expressed the hope that Ukraine would do the same.

The members of the Contact Group have announced ceasefire more than 20 times since the autumn of 2014. Kiev forces regularly violated the truce opening fire with large calibre artillery, mortars and tank guns which were to have been withdrawn in accordance with the Minsk agreements.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.

LuganskMediaCentre — 18 April — Lugansk