OSCE records increased presence of heavy equipment in exclusion zone

OSCE records increased presence of heavy equipment in exclusion zone

Ukrinform
At the TCG meeting, the OSCE SMM reported heightened tensions along the contact line and an increased presence of heavy equipment in the exclusion zone.

This is underscored in the press statement of Special Representative of the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office in Ukraine and in the Trilateral Contact Group (TCG), Ambassador Mikko Kinnunen, made after the regular meeting of Trilateral Contact Group on October 27, 2021.

“The security situation dominated today’s discussions of the TCG. The Special Monitoring Mission reported heightened tensions along the contact line and an increased presence of heavy equipment in the exclusion zone. While raising questions related to the use of banned equipment and weapon systems, I called upon all sides to adhere to their commitments and not to escalate further,” Kinnunen stated.

He emphasized that the unprecedented restrictions and harassments experienced by SMM last week were unacceptable. “This was part of our discussions since these and other continuing impediments endanger the fulfillment of the Mission’s mandate.”

According to the Special Representative of the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office in Ukraine, the Security Working Group was dedicated to discussions on the detention in the disengagement area Zolote – Pervomaisk on October 13. “Participants did not reach a common view on how to enhance mutual confidence. Related to the detainee, it is important to be transparent enough regarding his status as well as respect of international humanitarian law and human rights,” Kinnunen stressed.

He noted that October 28 would mark one year since the tasking by the TCG to the Political Working Group to urgently develop a draft action plan based on written proposals by Working Group participants, in full compliance with the Minsk Agreements. “I regret to note that continuous divergences have prevented the Political Working Group so far in engaging on substance related to the development of a single Plan of Action,” the Special Representative informed.

Kinnunen added that the participants in the Humanitarian Working Group had a substantial discussion on the topic of missing persons and exchanged views on the opening of new crossing points across the contact line and the mutual release of conflict-related detainees.

Discussions in the Economic Working Group focused on water issues and in particular on tariffs and legal aspects of water deliveries to certain areas of Donetsk and Luhansk regions of Ukraine (CADLO). Participants also discussed the recent travel restrictions in CALO and their possible impact on the ability of pensioners to collect their pension on government-controlled territory.

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