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MOSCOW, January 25. /TASS/. The OSCE should participate in an unbiased investigation of the recent shellings of Donetsk and Mariupol and other towns in Ukraine’s southeast, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov told EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini in a phone conversation on Sunday.
During the conversation, which was held at the EU initiative, Lavrov expressed hope that the European Union “will not turn a blind eye to the destructive course for Ukraine and will make Kiev’s authorities agree to launch a full-fledged political settlement process.”
Lavrov stressed that Russia believes the current deterioration in the situation is the result of “Kiev’s line towards avoiding a direct dialogue with Donetsk and Lugansk on the practical fulfillment of the Minsk agreements and its line towards the violent suppression of the southeast.”
The Russian top diplomat said there could have been no tragedies in Volnovakha, Donetsk and Mariupol if Kiev had accepted Russian President Vladimir Putin’s proposal on January 15 on the immediate withdrawal of heavy weaponry from the line agreed in the Minsk memorandum on September 19.
“However, instead of this Kiev has set a course for the further militarization and has announced new mobilization waves and given the order to intensify armed actions,” the Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
The crisis in Ukraine has killed more than 5,000 and injured another 10,000 people since April, while some 1.5 million civilians have had to abandon their homes, according to the United Nations.