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DPR envoy considers Kiev statement on all-for-all prisoner swap PR stunt

August 29, 14:17 UTC+3 DONETSK
The DPR chief negotiator says all-for-all prisoner exchange procedure is possible when a law on amnesty is adopted
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DPR chief negotiator Denis Pushilin

DPR chief negotiator Denis Pushilin

© Valery Matytsin/TASS

DONETSK, August 29. /TASS/. Denis Pushilin, the chief negotiator for the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) to the Contact Group on settlement in eastern Ukraine, is skeptical about the Ukrainian authorities’ willingness to comply with the Minsk accords in terms of prisoner exchange under an all-for-all format.

Yuri Tandit, an aide to the Ukrainian Security Service chief, told the 112 Ukraine TV channel on Friday that Kiev is ready to release prisoners on the basis of an all-for-all principle, adding that this format was discussed at the latest talks in Minsk.

"These are just words, promises and self-advertising, but no specific actions. That’s the way one can describe these statements by Ukraine’s representatives. To make this all-for-all prisoner exchange procedure possible, a law on amnesty which we have been talking about for a long time, is needed. However, no progress has been made," the Donetsk News Agency quotes Pushilin as saying.

Disengagement possible after cessation of shelling

Pushilin stressed the Ukrainian armed forces should stop provocations along the line of contact in the Donbass region.

"We can see a serious deterioration of the situation along the contact line. Here it is necessary to comply with the first two provisions and the third one - control and verification by the OSCE," he said. "Talking about new mechanisms is irrelevant. There are no provocations on our part. Ukraine’s political will is required here, and then it will be possible to begin the disengagement of forces."

Members of the Contact Group for the settlement of the situation in eastern Ukraine agreed at an April 29 meeting in Minsk on a complete ceasefire in Donbass as of April 30. This has been the eighth ceasefire agreement since the autumn of 2014. Nevertheless, the parties to the conflict continue to accuse each other of violating the truce.

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