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Ukraine unilaterally installs 235 boundary pillars on border with Russia

March 05, 2015, 18:32 UTC+3 KIEV
Ukraine and Russia now share a land border around 2,295 kilometers
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Ukrainian army serviceman near the Ukrainian-Russian border

Ukrainian army serviceman near the Ukrainian-Russian border

© Konstantin Cherginsky/TASS

KIEV, 5 March. /TASS/. Ukraine has unilaterally installed 235 frontier posts on the border with the Russian Federation, spokesman for Ukraine’s State Border Guard Service Oleg Slobodyan told a briefing on Thursday.

"Once there was only one joint border sign on the Ukrainian-Russian border - within the boundaries of the Chernigov region, and after that the Ukrainian side continued to set boundary pillars, at the moment their number has reached 235," said the spokesman.

However, he acknowledged that "the demarcation of the state border is a very complex issue," which requires the participation of both sides in its settlement.

Russia and Ukraine signed a border demarcation agreement on in May 2010. A joint demarcation commission was established back then as well.

On September 24, 2014, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko by his decree enacted the decision of the country’s National Security and Defense Council, according to which Ukraine can partially or completely close the crossing points on the border with the Russian Federation, as well as to conduct a unilateral demarcation of the border.

Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said previously that "the demarcation of the state border is a two-way process between the neighbouring countries and therefore unilateral demarcation cannot be legally binding for the other side."

The Treaty on the State Border between Russia and Ukraine entered into force on April 23, 2004. The treaty’s supplements include a description of the positioning of the Russian-Ukrainian state border and 1:50000 scale maps with the borderline drawn. The treaty did not envision demarcation - drawing the state borderline and marking it with special border signs.

On May 17, 2010, then-Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and then-Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych signed an agreement on demarcation of the land section of the border, which took effect on July 29, 2010. The joint demarcation commission was set up as well.

The state border demarcation process continued throughout 2013 but was suspended due to events in Ukraine, which has been in turmoil since the end of last year, when then-president Yanukovych decided to suspend the signing of an association agreement with the EU to study the deal more thoroughly, which triggered anti-government protests that often turned violent and eventually led to a coup in February 2014.

On June 17, the Verkhovna Rada, Ukraine’s unicameral parliament, recommended the government to make a decision within a month "to suspend the operation of state border-crossing points along the land section (of the border) with Russia.

Ukraine and Russia now share a land border around 2,295 km.

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