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Kiev confirms 2nd phase of weapons withdrawal to begin Tuesday

October 19, 2015, 9:39 UTC+3
The DPR, in its turn, has rescheduled withdrawing of the weapons of caliber under 100mm from October 18 to October 21 "because of regular violations of ceasefire by the Ukrainian military"
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© AP Photo/Efrem Lukatsky, Archive

KIEV, October 19. /TASS/. The Ukrainian side plans to launch the second phase of weapons withdrawal from the contact line in Donbas on Tuesday, the press center of the military operation has said.

"The second phase is due to begin already tomorrow [October 20]," a spokesperson said.

Kiev stresses that the preparations for the weapons withdrawal are nearing completion.

"Under the Minsk agreements, Ukraine’s military compete preparing the weapons planned to be withdrawn from the contact line for at least 15 kilometers," the spokesperson said.

The withdrawal should be carried out by both sides simultaneously, the press center stressed.

The defense ministry of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) said on Sunday Kiev was not preparing for the weapons withdrawal despite the pledges.

"There are no active actions besides the claims," a spokesman for the ministry, Eduard Basurin, said. "Under the agreements, the first to be withdrawn are tanks; and on Saturday I said the Ukrainian military are building up the group of tanks at certain directions."

The DPR, in its turn, has rescheduled withdrawing of the weapons of caliber under 100mm from October 18 to October 21 "because of regular violations of ceasefire by the Ukrainian military."

On October 17, the representatives of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission (SMM) completed verifying the weapons with calibre under 100mm and equipment withdrawn by the self-proclaimed Luhansk People’s Republic during the first phase. The same day, the Luhansk militias confirmed the withdrawal of weapons with calibre under 120mm carried out by the Kiev forces from the contact line.

Under the agreement reached in late September, the parties are to first withdraw tanks, then artillery weapons with the caliber under 100mm and mortars to the distance of 15 kilometers from the each side of the contact line.

The overall withdrawal effort is expected to take 41 days.

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