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Poroshenko insists on deploying OSCE police mission as condition for elections in Donbass

October 23, 2016, 21:06 UTC+3 KIEV
Another condition Kiev is setting for the organization of elections is ensuring Ukraine’s control over the border with Russia in Donbass on the second day after the polls, the Ukrainian president said
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KIEV, October 23. /TASS/. Kiev insist on deployment of a police mission of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) in Donbass territories it does not control as a mandatory condition for local elections in these territories, Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko said on Sunday.

"It is necessary to boost the efficiency of the OSCE monitoring mission and an armed police mission is needed there. Before the elections, we must have control over the border on the part of a permanent OSCE armed mission," he said in an interview with the Ukraina television channel commenting on the results of the latest Normandy Four summit in Berlin.

The Ukrainian president said that another condition Kiev is setting for the organization of an election process is ensuring Ukraine’s control over the border with Russia in Donbass "on the second day after the polls," as is said in the Minsk agreements.

According to Poroshenko, the Normandy Four leaders now plan to focus on a roadmap for the implementation of the Minsk agreements, with exact time when the Minsk agreements are to be implemented.

Roadmap on Donbass

A roadmap for the settlement of the situation in eastern Ukraine will envisage the implementation of both the Minsk-1 package signed in September 2014 and the Minsk-2 package of February 2015, Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko said.

"Position number one is to stop the ping pong game: who and when must implement which part of the Minsk agreement," he said in an interview with Ukrainian television channels. "What will be in the focus of the roadmap is first, complete ceasefire and then heavy weapons withdrawal."

He said the new document will grant access for OSCE monitors to the entire Donbass territory, including the border and unimpeded access for the mission of the International Committee of the Red Cross. Apart from that, the roadmap will envisage the use of drones to record ceasefire violations.

The roadmap, according to Poroshenko, is not a substitute for the Minsk agreements. It will envisage the dates of the implementation of the Minsk agreements and a mechanism for prisoner exchange. The security package will include the completion of the disengagement of forces in the three previously appointed areas - in Zolotoye, Petrovskoye and Stanitsa Luganskaya. Moreover, four more zones will be appointed for disengagement. Poroshenko insisted that Debaltsevo should be among these zones.

According to the Ukrainian president, the new document will provide for the implementation of both Minsk-1 and Minsk-2 settlement packages. "The roadmap includes the implementation of all of the Minsk agreements, including the protocol of September 5, 2014, the memorandum of September 19, 2014 and the package of measures of February 12, 2015," he said.

The parties to the Ukrainian conflict agreed on a ceasefire at OSCE-mediated talks on September 5 in Belarusian capital Minsk. On September 19 in Minsk, the Trilateral Contact Group on Ukraine comprising representatives of Ukraine, Russia and the OSCE adopted a memorandum outlining the parameters for the implementation of commitments on the ceasefire in Ukraine laid down in the Minsk Protocol of September 5.

On February 12, 2015, the Contact Group signed a 13-point Package of Measures to fulfil the September 2014 Minsk agreements. The package was agreed with the leaders of the Normandy Four, namely Russia, Germany, France and Ukraine.

The Package of Measures, known as Minsk-2, envisaged a ceasefire between Ukrainian government forces and people’s militias in the self-proclaimed republics in Donetsk and Lugansk starting from February 15 and subsequent withdrawal of heavy weapons from the line of engagement. The deal also laid out a roadmap for a lasting settlement in Ukraine, including local elections and constitutional reform to give more autonomy to the war-torn eastern regions.

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