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Luhansk militia claim fulfilling obligations on pullout of mortars from contact line

October 15, 2015, 15:57 UTC+3 MOSCOW

The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe will tomorrow conduct verification of the withdrawn weapons

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© TASS/Taras Dudnik

MOSCOW, October 15. /TASS/. The self-proclaimed Luhansk People’s Republic (LPR) has fulfilled its obligations on the withdrawal of mortars from the contact line, first deputy head of the LPR People’s Militia Corps Sergey Kozlov said on Thursday.

"It’s the closing stage. When the Ukrainian side also complies, it will be possible to proceed to the second stage," he told LuganskInformCentre.

"Sector ‘North’ has fulfilled all its obligations. The LPR people’s militia have fulfilled all obligations signed by the leadership of our republic. LPR has withdrawn mortars to the required distance. OSCE (Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe) will tomorrow conduct verification of the withdrawn weapons," Kozlov said.

LPR head Igor Plotnitsky signed on September 30 the supplement to the Package of Measures to implement the Minsk agreements of February 12, 2015 in the part regarding the withdrawal of tanks and artillery weapons with calibre under 100 mm and mortars with calibre under 120 mm.

On September 29, following a meeting of the Contact Group on the Ukrainian crisis resolution and its security working subgroup that took place in Minsk, the participants in the talks initialed the document on the withdrawal of weapons with calibre under 100 mm and tanks from the line of contact. The withdrawal will be carried out in two stages. Tanks are withdrawn first followed by artillery and mortars.

The supplement to the Package of Measures envisages withdrawal of tanks, artillery weapons of less than 100 mm calibre, and mortars of equal to or less than 120 mm calibre to a distance of 15 kilometres from the contact line in Donbass. On September 30, the document was signed by the heads of the DPR and LPR republics, Alexander Zakharchenko and Igor Plotnitsky.

The first stage should start two days after the complete ceasefire and finish in 15 days. The second stage will take 24 days to complete. The withdrawal started in the "North" sector on the LPR territory and will continue in the "South" sector in DPR. The whole process of withdrawal is expected to take a total of 41 days.

The LPR equipment withdrawal is planned for the periods from October 3 to 17 and from October 18 to November 10. The process is monitored by representatives of the Joint Centre for Control and Coordination (JCCC) of the ceasefire regime and then the related reports are passed to OSCE.

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