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Kiev says troops’ pullout near Luganskaya village is impossible for now

October 13, 13:18 UTC+3
According to the Ukrainian Defense Ministry, Donbass militias have "breached the ceasefire regime"
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© AP Photo/Evgeniy Maloletka

KIEV, October 13. /TASS/. The Ukrainian Defense Ministry said on Thursday that it could not pull out troops from the engagement line near Stanitsa Luganskaya in southeast Ukraine.

Ukrainian Defense Ministry spokesman Andrei Lysenko said the troops’ pullout was impossible as the opposite side had "breached the ceasefire regime."

"This means that the disengagement of the Ukrainian forces and the hostile army at this section of the front is impossible so far," the spokesman said.

A representative of the self-proclaimed Lugansk People’s Republic’s militias has accused the Ukrainian side of disrupted the pullout.

"Through the fault of the Ukrainian side, disengagement of forces has failed today," LuganskInformCenter news agency quoted Oleg Anashchenko as saying.

He said at 12:50 he fired a white signal rocket as a sign of LPR readiness to begin the withdrawal, but there was no return signal from the Ukrainian side.

Earlier, already four attempts were disrupted to carry out the troops’ pullout in that area. Head of the pro-Kiev Lugansk Region military and civil administration Yuri Garbuz said on October 9 that the Ukrainian side had not fulfilled the agreement on the troops’ pullout over the fears that Stanitsa Luganskaya would be placed under the control of the LPR militia.

It followed from his statement that the decision on refusing to pull out the forces had been made by the Ukrainian Defense Ministry and the command of Kiev’s army operation in the Donbass area.

Under an agreement reached earlier, the Ukrainian army and militia of the self-proclaimed Lugansk People’s Republic were expected to begin pulling out their personnel and combat hardware on Thursday from Stanitsa Luganskaya - the last of the three experimental security zones that should appear in the Donbass area.

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