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11 October 2019, 12:25

MILITARY&DEFENCE

Minsk-2

SMM heads to Ukrainian side in Zolotoye to clarify situation with disengagment

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LUGANSK, October 11 (Lugansk Media Centre) - OSCE Special Monitoring Mission observers have headed to the Kiev-controlled territory in the Zolotoye area to find out why the Ukrainian side had not responded to the LPR disengagement readiness signal, head of the Lugansk People’s Republic Office at the Joint Centre for Control and Coordination Col Mikhail Filiponenko said at the scene.

“OSCE SMM patrols led by the Lugansk team head  Esad Humo went to the side not controlled by the LPR to clarify the situation as an SMM patrol has not recorded a signal flare on the Ukrainian side,” he said. “

The first attempt to disengage forces and hardware in Zolotoye made on October 9 was failed by Ukraine, as well as the second one on October 10.

The LPR informed the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine that it was ready to make a new disengagement attempt on October 11.

LPR and DPR representatives at a meeting in Minsk in September 2016 initialled a framework agreement on partial pullback of forces in Donbass, that was also signed by representatives of Ukraine, Russia and OSCE. The document provides for three security areas around Zolotoye, Stanitsa Luganskaya and Petrovskoe (DPR territory). The disengagement has been completed in all three areas by now; however, Kiev forces deploy manpower and hardware in Zolotoye and Petrovskoye areas in violation of the agreements.

The Contact Group participants at the meeting in Minsk on October 1 agreed the resumption of the disengagement process in Zolotoye and Petrovskoye. Contact Group coordinator for OSCE Martin Sajdik said that the parties had named October 7, 2019 as the date for resumption the disengagement of forces and hardware at the Zolotoye and Petrovskoye areas. However, on October 7, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Vadim Pristaiko said that the Ukrainian army would not begin disengagement until seven days had passed since the last recorded ceasefire violation. In response, LPR Foreign Minister Vladislav Deinego said that “no seven days mentioned by Mr Pristaiko are envisioned this time, and that regardless of the provocations, the disengagement must take place.”

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 — 11 October — Lugansk