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Russia's envoy: Kiev continues to move heavy arms to disengagement line in Donbass

February 07, 2017, 16:52 UTC+3

Kiev is ignoring Contact Group decisions on heavy weapons withdrawal, Russian presidential envoy to Minsk talks Boris Gryzlov said

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© AP Photo/Evgeniy Maloletka

MOSCOW, February 7. /TASS/. Ukrainian forces keep moving heavy weapons and ammunition towards the line of disengagement in Donbass, Russian presidential envoy to Minsk talks on a settlement in the east of Ukraine, Boris Gryzlov, has said.

"From OSCE SMM reports and news from territories along the line of disengagement in Donbass we know that heavy weapons and ammunition continue to be massed up," he said.

"I would like to once again remind Ukraine’s leaders of the statement passed by the Contact Group on February 1, which calls on the parties to pull weapons falling under the Minsk agreements from the contact line to storage places by February 5," Gryzlov said.

"This major provision of the statement has not yet been implemented by the Ukrainian armed forces," he stressed.

Of particular worry, in his words, is mortar shelling of the Mayorsk checkpoint by Ukrainian troops in the evening on February 6. "Luckily, no one was hurt. The incident only heightens our concern over security of people crossing the engagement line," he added.

The situation along the line of contact in Donbass has deteriorated dramatically over the past few days. There are casualties among the civilian population due to the incessant shelling by the Ukrainian armed forces, many dwelling houses and infrastructure facilities have been damaged.

Thus, the Mayorsk checkpoint near Gorlovka came under mortar shelling by Ukrainian troops on Monday. In all, the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) reported more than 600 episodes of shelling by Ukrainian troops in the past day.

On February 1, the Contact Group on the settlement in eastern Ukraine demanded at a meeting in Minsk an end to hostilities in Donbass and withdrawal of all weapons and equipment along the entire contact line to storage sites by February 5. However, according to the DPR command, Kiev has been pulling more weapons to the contact line instead of withdrawing them.

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