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VIENNA, July 7. /TASS/. The Permanent Council of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) has extended the work of its monitoring mission on the Russian-Ukrainian border for another three months until October 31, 2016.
The decision to extend the mandate in the previous format was made at a Permanent Council meeting in Vienna on Thursday. As before, the observers will be located at the Donetsk and Gukovo border checkpoints on the Russian side of the border.
The decision to deploy the mission, which currently includes about 20 observers, was initially made on July 24, 2014. The mandate lasted three months and was extended all the time. Every time the extension issue was considered some Western countries came up with a proposal to deploy observers to other checkpoints from the Russian side of the border and even monitor the "green" sections of the border.
Moscow has always said that the invitation of OSCE observers to Russian checkpoints was a goodwill gesture. The choice of the checkpoints stemmed from the fact that the Ukrainian authorities have lost control over the checkpoints on their territory.