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MOSCOW, March 1. /TASS/. Head of the Lugansk region military and civil administration Georgiy Tuka is preparing information grounds to justify the disruption of the opening of the Zolotoye checkpoint, Deputy Chief of the People’s Militia Corps of the self-proclaimed Lugansk People’s Republic (LPR) Igor Yashchenko has said.
"Tuka has already failed the opening of the checkpoint near Pervomaisk scheduled for February 12 allegedly because of militia shelling," Yashchenko told LuganskInformTsentr commenting on Tuka’s remarks who said that LPR was ostensibly trying to take control of Molodyozhnoye village located at the demarcation line in the buffer zone. "Now he is preparing information grounds for the second failure inventing all sorts of cock-and-bull stories that we supposedly want to gain control of Molodyozhnoye."
Yashchenko also recalled that at the last meeting of the Contact Group in Minsk the Ukrainian side promised to open the Zolotoye checkpoint no later than in the first decade of March.
Following Contact Group meeting in Minsk, Belarus, on January 27 an agreement was reached on the opening of an automobile checkpoint in the Lugansk region near the cities of Popasnaya and Pervomaisk on February 12. However, on January 31 head of the Lugansk regional administration Georgiy Tuka said he would not agree to the opening of a new checkpoint in Donbass near Zolotoye populated locality in the event of further attacks.
After the previous meeting of the Contact Group held on February 24 OSCE envoy Martin Sajdik said that the Ukrainian side had confirmed the opening of a checkpoint for auto transport, humanitarian cargo and pedestrians near Zolotoye in the first decade of March, if security conditions were met.
Currently, only one checkpoint operates in the Lugansk region near Luganskaya village. However, traffic movement in this area is impossible because the bridge has been blown up by the Ukrainian military.