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MOSCOW, December 2. /TASS/. Moscow agrees to extending the mandate of observers from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) at the Donetsk and Gukovo checkpoints on the Russian-Ukrainian border until January 31, 2016, Russia’s Foreign Ministry said on Wednesday.
The Russian Foreign Ministry’s comment comes as Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov is going to take part in the OSCE Council of Foreign Ministers in Belgrade.
"We support the OSCE’s efforts to contribute to settling the Ukraine crisis," the Russian Foreign Ministry said.
"The Contact Group on Ukraine acts as a unique platform of a direct dialog between Kiev, Donetsk and Luhansk with the meditation of the OSCE and Russia. It is necessary to ensure strict compliance with all the commitments under the Minsk Package of Measures," the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
"The OSCE’s Special Monitoring Mission in Ukraine is assigned to solve the following key tasks: the observance of the ceasefire regime, assistance to the exchange of prisoners-of-war and help in investigating the violations of humanitarian law and human rights, including discovered mass burial sites and the instances of the use of prohibited weapons," the statement said.
"The Special Monitoring Mission’s task to assist to national dialog in Ukraine should not be forgotten either," the Russian Foreign Ministry said.
"We stand for building up the mission’s possibilities and intend to support it with personnel (currently, 37 Russian observers are working in the Special Monitoring Mission), technical means and financially," the statement said.
"The Russian side has agreed to extending the mandate of the OSCE observers at the Donetsk and Gukovo checkpoints on the Russian-Ukrainian border until January 31, 2016," the Russian Foreign Ministry said. "There is no need for expanding their mandate."