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EU police mission in Ukraine should support Minsk ceasefire deal — Ukraine's UN envoy

February 20, 2015, 15:21 UTC+3 UN
Ukraine's National Security and Defence Council (NSDC) gave priority to European Union police forces which could be swiftly deployed within several months
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Ukrainian servicemen in Donetsk area, eastern Ukraine

Ukrainian servicemen in Donetsk area, eastern Ukraine

© EPA/ANASTASIA VLASOVA

UN, February 20. /TASS/. Ukraine's ambassador to the United Nations on Friday clarified Kiev’s proposal that foreign troops should be stationed on its territory.

Yuriy Sergeyev told TASS that Ukraine's National Security and Defence Council (NSDC) gave priority to European Union police forces which could be swiftly deployed within several months.

"A combined version has been put forward — to have a mission of the so-called European Union Common Security and Defence Policy," Sergeyev said, adding that "the decision has been made not in favour of peacekeeping armed forces but in favour of police units.

"Simultaneously, it has been decided that this mission should preferably act in accordance with a UN mandate. Such combined versions have already existed in the past," he said, noting operations under the auspices of the UN in Afghanistan and EU missions in the former Yugoslavia.

"What is also important in the NSDC decree is that the mission is invited not to replace the Minsk agreements but as an element of support to ensure their fulfilment," the ambassador said, referring to the peace deal agreed by the leaders of Ukraine, Russia, Germany and France in the Belarusian capital last week.

Continued fighting in eastern Ukraine "has complicated implementation of the Minsk agreements in regard to withdrawal of heavy weaponry", Sergeyev said, noting that the entire peace process was "in jeopardy".

The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, initially outlined in the Minsk agreements, "has demonstrated limited capabilities" in conflict resolution, he added.

The ambassador gave no clear answer to the question whether authorities in Kiev would discuss their plans with representatives of the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics, saying that "they deny everything".

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