This is stated in a statement by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine regarding the situation when, since March 21, members of the armed formations at checkpoints in Donetsk and Luhansk regions have denied the patrols of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission (SMM) passage into and from non-government-controlled areas.
"The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine condemns the actions of representatives of the Russian occupation authorities in the temporarily occupied territories of Donetsk and Luhansk regions, which since March 21 have blocked access of the OSCE SMM patrols to the specified territories to carry out monitoring activities within their mandate approved by the OSCE Permanent Council. These facts have been documented in the relevant reports of the SMM," the report says.
It notes that such actions by the occupation administration of the Russian Federation are a direct violation of the SMM’s mandate, contradict the Minsk agreements, as well as the general agreed conclusion of the Normandy format summit held in Paris on December 9, 2019, according to which the OSCE SMM should have safe and secure access to the whole territory of Ukraine for full fulfillment of its mandate.
The denial of access for the OSCE SMM to the temporarily occupied territories of Donetsk and Luhansk regions, introduced under the pretext of spreading the coronavirus Covid-19, is unacceptable, including from the point of view of the safety of international observers.
The Foreign Ministry called on the international community, primarily participants in the Normandy format summit, to continue to exert pressure on the Russian Federation, which is responsible for the development of the situation in the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine in Donetsk and Luhansk regions, in order to ensure its full and strict implementation of the Minsk agreements.
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