In Ukraine

TASS, Wednesday, June 1, 2016

MINSK – The Donetsk People’s Republic and the Lugansk People’s Republic are against the deployment of any military contingents in their territories, including the OSCE police mission, Viktoria Talakina, the press secretary of the DPR representative in the Contact Group for the Ukraine settlement, said after the Contact Group’s meeting in Minsk on Wednesday.

“The stances of the DPR and LPR concerning this matter remain unchanged. We do not want to see any military contingents deployed in the territories of the people’s republics,” Talakina wrote on her page in Facebook.

“The OSCE Special Monitoring Mission is a civil rather than a military organization, which is supposed to control and verify the implementation of the [Minsk} Accords under the Package of Measures [Minsk-2]. The task of law enforcers is to guard law and order,” Talakina said.

Denis Pushilin, DPR’s representative in the Contact Group, told the Contact Group’s meeting on Wednesday that Ukrainian politicians’ statements that the Normandy Four countries, including Russia, had allegedly given consent to arming the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission (SMM) in Ukraine were false.

Ukraine’s representative in the political working group for the Ukraine settlement was close to disrupting its work after refusing to discuss some items on the group’s agenda, Viktoria Talakina, the press secretary of the special representative of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic in the Contact Group for the settlement in Eastern Ukraine, said after the group’s meeting in Minsk on Wednesday.

“Ukraine was close to derailing the political group’s work for the second time. Another representative of the Ukrainian side said he was not authorized to discuss some items on the agenda,” Talakina wrote in Facebook. She described such an attitude to the negotiations as outrageous.

According to Talakina, Ukraine has not submitted a single document ever since the political group started its work. By comparison, the representatives of the self-proclaimed republics have drawn up and presented three drafts of amendments to Ukraine’s constitution; two draft laws on elections and two drafts of a road map for the conflict’s peaceful settlement. “Russia also submitted a roadmap draft. The group’s OSCE coordinator has submitted more than 10 drafts,” Talakina said.

“A logical conclusion comes to mind: who is genuinely interested in the conflict’s peaceful settlement and who is not?” Talakina concluded.

The Contact Group’s working groups for security, politics, humanitarian and economic issues met in Minsk on June 1.

Martin Sajdik, the Special Representative of the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office in Ukraine and in the Trilateral Contact Group for the Ukraine settlement, has voiced concern with increased incidents of violation of the ceasefire regime and the growing number of casualties in Donbass and has called for bringing all ceasefire breakers to justice.

“The meetings passed against the background of numerous violations of the ceasefire regime and growing military and civilian casualties. I am particularly concerned with civilian casualties, including attacks on unarmed observers,” Sajdik said.

“I demand bringing all the violators to justice and calling froe guaranteeing immediate and unrestricted assess of the Special Monitoring Mission in the entire territory of the Donetsk and Lugansk regions,” the OSCE special representative said.

According to him, participants in the security working group discussed possible cessation of military hostilities on the whole and ways of improving the work of the Joint Control and Coordination Center at a meeting on Wednesday.

“The group’s participants worked over concrete options for disengaging forces and creating certain buffer security zones along the entire line of contact,” Sajdik said.

Ukrainian army units have shelled the areas adjacent to the line of contact in the Donetsk People’s Republic 211 times over the past 24 hours, the DPR operational command said on Wednesday.

The Contact Group for settlement in Eastern Ukraine agreed to introduce a new “silence regime” as of midnight on April 30 at a meeting in Minsk on April 29. But the sides in the Ukraine conflict continue accusing each other of truce violations.


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