In Digest, Ukraine

By New Cold, July 27, 2015

Residents of Donetsk protest the failure of the OSCE and International Red Cross to protect them from Ukrainian shelling, blockade, July 23, 2015

Residents of Donetsk protest the failure of the OSCE and International Red Cross to protect them from Ukrainian shelling, blockade, July 23, 2015

Four days ago, hundreds of angry residents of Donetsk city and region rallied in front of the Park Inn by Radisson hotel in Donetsk where monitors of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) and the International Committee of the Red Cross were staying.

Novorossia News reports that residents gathered to express their outrage at what they consider the bad job of the OSCE and ICRC in reporting to the world the situation in Donetsk and more broadly in Donbas. They called for impartial reporting of developments in the Donbas region by the two agencies. According to participants, international monitors are not impartial in the reporting of what is going on in war-hit Donbas.

Residents of shelled districts, refugees and disabled civilians demanded that the OSCE tell the truth to the world. Some of them came with photos of houses destroyed by Ukrainian artillery and posters reading, ‘Stop the silence!’, ‘Your silence kills children!’, ‘While you are rolling in clover, civilians die.’

Later the OSCE representatives came to speak to protesters. (Video here, no English subtitles.)

Igor Martynov, mayor of Donetsk, spoke to the OSCE delegation. He said later, “My key question [to the OSCE monitors] is ‘From whom does Ukrainian army liberate us?’ I didn’t get any answer. The OSCE representatives looked very surprised. In other words, were not ready for such a question.”

The residents gave until the following Monday, July 27, for the OSCE representatives to come up with a concrete answer to their demands. They may resume their rally at that time.

Read also:

Anti-OSCE Protest: Head of monitoring mission calls demonstration ‘orchestrated’

UA, Thursday, July 23, 2015

Alexander Hug, the deputy chief of the Special Monitoring Mission of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe believes an anti-OSCE protest in Donetsk posed a real security concern for his mission. He called a protest in the morning of Thursday, July 23 in Donetsk “aggressive and orchestrated”, adding it was an unacceptable form of censorship and posed a security concern.

“This morning up to three hundred civilian protesters have assembled in front of our hotel in Donetsk city. These were mainly female protesters. They were organised and they were protesting against the war itself but also against the operation of the OSCE special monitoring mission. They did so in an organised manner, in front of our hotel. The protesters later entered [the hotel] rather aggressively.”

Protesters gathered outside the hotel housing members of the OSCE holding up posters which read “Your silence kills children!” Meanwhile, a young man walked around the vehicles belonging to the organization and spray painted ‘DPR’ (Donetsk People’s Republic) along with some expletives on them.

Members of the OSCE mission came out to talk to those outside but were unable to calm the crowd.

Hug said further, “The protesters furthermore vandalised our cars. Thirty of these cars were vandalized, spray-painted in the back yard of the hotel. The OSCE special monitoring mission is concerned about this situation and calls upon those in effective control to provide sufficient security for the observers in Donetsk city.”

The demonstration occurred several days after renewed shelling of Donetsk destroyed buildings and started fires.

The OSCE published a report on Monday saying that their crater analysis showed that the shelling came from Ukrainian government controlled areas.


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