LUGANSK, February 6 (Lugansk Media Centre) - Kiev forces fired at an OSCE Special Monitoring Mission patrol in the Zolotoye area to blame the Lugansk People’s Republic militia for the incident, LPR People’s Militia spokesman Andrey Marochko said at a press briefing at the Lugansk Media Centre.
The OSCE reported that its patrol was fired at near a Ukrainian checkpoint in the Zolotoye area on February 4.
“It is a planned Ukrainian provocation aimed at blaming the People’s Militia for shooting at OSCE mission staff,” Marochko said.
He said that the militia had carefully investigated the incident using independent sources data.
“It follows from OSCE mission daily reports on the presence of Ukrainian weapons in disengagement zone No 2 (Pervomaisk-Zolotoye) and near Zolotoye-4 including the Volniy village, that OSCE monitors repeatedly recorded weapons and hardware prohibited by the Minsk agreements, as well as the emergence of new army positions,” the spokesman said.
On February 4, from 11:20 to 11:50, Kiev forces in Zolotoye-4 shelled Zolotoye-5 (LPR-controlled territory) with a 82mm mortar damaging two houses.
“At 11:30, the OSCE SMM Lugansk team representative informed the LPR officer at the Joint Centre for Control and Coordination about a mortar round explosion in Zolotoye-4, 100 metres from the OSCE SMM Severodonetsk patrol,” Marochko said.
“The above information shows the so-called double shooting by Ukrainian forces with a mortar squad initially striking our territory and then the Ukraine-controlled territory,” he said.
He said that Kiev forced had planned the provocation which is proven by the fat that the reports blaming the militia for shelling were published by Ukrainian media long before the the OSCE SMM official report on the shooting.
Earlier, Marochko said that Kiev forces’ posting a video of strikes at the Lugansk People’s Republic shows their contempt for the Minsk accords.
The spokesman said that Kiev forces had stepped up aerial reconnaissance using unmanned aerial vehicles in the vicinity of Schastye, Tryokhizbenka and Zolotoye.
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regularly violated the truce opening fire with large calibre artillery, mortars and tank guns which were to have been withdrawn in accordance with the Minsk agreements.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.