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Russian OSCE envoy sees Kiev's readiness to resume combat actions in Donbass

September 09, 16:27 UTC+3 MOSCOW
The diplomat stressed that it is unacceptable to distort the Minsk agreements and put forward additional conditions for the political settlement
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© Stanislav Grigoriev/TASS

MOSCOW, September 9. /TASS/. Kiev’s ceasefire violations and military buildup on the contact line signal its readiness to switch to an active phase of combat actions at any moment, Russia’s envoy to the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) Alexander Lukashevich has said.

"Unfortunately, despite the declared silence regime, sporadic shellings in Donbass are happening more often," Lukashevich said at the OSCE Permanent Council’s meeting in Vienna on Thursday, according to the Russian Foreign Ministry.

Mortar shellings of the Donetsk airport, Yasinovataya, the Petrovsky district of Donetsk, the Trudovskiye village, the Zasyadko coal mine, the Sakhanka village, a suburb of Dokuchayevsk and Kominternovo have been reported. Civilians in Donetsk have been also affected by the sniper fire opened after September 1, he said.

The OSCE special monitoring mission has spotted a concentration of Ukrainian armaments near the withdrawal line, including more than 30 howitzers, multiple rocket launchers and tanks. "All this signals the readiness of the Ukrainian Armed Forces to switch to an active phase of combat actions at any moment," he said.

Any provocations need to be prevented when the ceasefire is in force, Lukashevich stressed.

Kiev may regain control of border only after Donbass elections

According to the diplomat, Ukraine’s authorities will be able to regain control over a part of border with Russia only after the local elections in Donbass.

"We remind that the process of restoring Kiev’s control over a part of the Ukrainian-Russian border may begin not earlier than local elections are held in Donbass," Lukashevich said at the OSCE Permanent Council’s meeting in Vienna on Thursday, according to the Russian Foreign Ministry.

The diplomat stressed that it is unacceptable to distort the Minsk agreements and put forward additional conditions for the political settlement, which also includes amnesty, the release of detainees and constitutional reform.

Lukashevich called on Ukraine’s parliament to adopt the documents needed for implementing the political points of the Minsk deal. "They should show will and reach an agreement on the whole package of documents with the Donbass representatives as envisaged by the Package of Measures and pass it in the parliament."

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