LPR residents are willing to pay for Ukraine-supplied water, but Kiev is blocking the approval of payment procedure, the Republic’s envoy to Minsk talks Vladislav Deinego told a news briefing at Lugansk Media Centre on Thursday.
Earlier in the day, Ukraine stopped water supply to LPR via Petrovskiy duct, located on the Kiev-controlled territory.
“LPR residents are ready to pay, they do pay, but there is no settlement procedure with the supplier company in the Ukrainian territory,” Deinego said. “The issue has topped Minsk talks agenda for about a year with different payment options discussed.”
“When the contract was signed in August setting terms of interaction between all the water supply agents Ukraine blocked the discussion platform,” he went on.
“(Kiev is putting brakes on work) precisely when the rates are approved and agreed upon, the contract signed with the payment mechanism remaining the only thing to decide upon,” he added.
"At that point, Ukraine blocked the Contact Group economic working group; its work came to a standstill in September as Ukraine derailed six sessions failing to attend. We have no opportunity to agree on payment procedure because of Ukraine,” Deinego said.
LPR envoy to the economic working group of the Contact Group Elena Kostenko said Ukrainian side informed LPR via the Contact Group of its plans to cut off water supply to the Republic starting 1 December.
Earlier Deinego said that Kiev claimed 270 mln hryvnia ($1 mln) that Lugansk allegedly owes it for water supply as the leaders of the Normandy Four (Russia, Germany, France and Ukraine) were discussing the revival of stalled peace process in Donbass at roundtable talks in Berlin on Oct. 19-20, though the appropriate payment agreement is not signed yet.
Deinego noted that Article 8 of the Package of Measures for the Implementation of the Minsk Agreements envisioned “Definition of modalities of full resumption of socio-economic ties, including social transfers such as pension payments and other payments (incomes and revenues, timely payments of all utility bills, reinstating taxation within the legal framework of Ukraine).”
He also said that the work of the Contact Group working group for economic issues has been continuously hampered by Kiev cavilling DPR representative status – Kiev reps refuse to talk to DPR's Maxim Leschenko without providing any reasonable argumentation or reliable information.
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 its 2202 Resolution 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 — 01 December — Lugansk
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