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Ukraine ceasefire holds so far as ‘Day of Silence’ begins in Luhansk

December 09, 2014, 12:46 UTC+3 MOSCOW
The silence regime is being observed and has not been violated so far, the republic’s leader, Igor Plotnitsky, says
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Local residents in the city of Alchevsk, Luhansk region

Local residents in the city of Alchevsk, Luhansk region

© Stanislav Krasilnikov/TASS

MOSCOW, December 9. /TASS/. A “Day of Silence” began on Tuesday morning in the self-proclaimed Luhansk People’s Republic and appears to still be in place, said the republic’s leader, Igor Plotnitsky.

“The silence regime is being observed and has not been violated so far,” Plotnitsky said. “It has been introduced starting today at 10 a.m. There was shelling in the morning. Now it is still holding but we will see whether it will last.”

“At the moment there's no shelling,” he added.

On December 4, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko declared a “Day of Silence” in Ukraine’s east on December 9, when all combat operations were to be ceased. The self-proclaimed Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics said they had never violated the Minsk ceasefire agreements and took retaliatory measures only in response to the Ukrainian army’s actions.

The parties to the Ukrainian conflict agreed on a ceasefire at talks mediated by the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) in the Belarusian capital, Minsk, on September 5. On September 20, a contact group of Ukrainian, Russian and international officials in Minsk adopted a memorandum outlining parameters for implementation of commitments on the ceasefire in Ukraine, laid down in the September 5 Minsk Protocol. The nine-point document in particular stipulates a ban on the use of all armaments and withdrawal of weapons with the calibres of over 100 millimetres to a distance of 15 kilometres from the contact line from each side. The OSCE was tasked with controlling the implementation of memorandum provisions. The document was signed by OSCE envoy Heidi Tagliavini, Ukraine’s former president Leonid Kuchma, Russia’s Ambassador to Kiev Mikhail Zurabov, DPR Prime Minister Aleksandr Zakharchenko and LPR head Igor Plotnitsky.

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