Hug discusses with Zakharchenko continued non-compliance with Minsk agreements

Hug discusses with Zakharchenko continued non-compliance with Minsk agreements

Principal Deputy Chief Monitor of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine (OSCE SMM) Alexander Hug has met with Alexander Zakharchenko, the leader of the illegal armed formation of the "DPR," and raised the issue of the continued non-fulfillment of the Minsk agreements.

"In line with the OSCE SMM's mandate to establish dialogue and promote normalization of the situation, OSCE SMM Principal Deputy Chief Monitor Alexander Hug met with Mr Zakharchenko in Donetsk city this evening [on November 23].... Mr Hug raised the issue of continued non-compliance with the Minsk agreements as reflected in the daily reports by the SMM," the OSCE SMM said in a statement on its Facebook page.

It also notes that Hug expressed concerns regarding the shelling and shooting in the vicinity of critical infrastructure facilities, such as the Donetsk and Verkhniokalmiuska filtration stations. He called for joint efforts to keep these facilities safe and for the withdrawal of heavy weapons and the disengagement of hardware and personnel from these locations.

He also expressed concern about the continued presence of positions in or nearby civilian infrastructure.

"Hug regretted that too much time has been wasted with fighting and urged that rather than finding more excuses not to improve the situation, damaged infrastructure must be repaired without any further delay. Mr Hug reiterated that the SMM stands ready to facilitate dialogue on the ground in order to reduce tensions and promote normalization of the situation," the report says.

Hug reiterated that the safety and security of SMM mission members remains of the highest priority for the mission, and that those who violate the safety or security of SMM personnel or assets must be held accountable.

"Mr Hug emphasized that the SMM's freedom of movement, including access to the unsecure border with the Russian Federation, remains restricted in areas controlled by the armed formations Mr. Zakharchenko commands. He pointed out that in November alone the Mission's freedom of movement had been restricted at least 23 times in areas of the Donetsk region beyond the control of the government (excluding incidents involving mines/UXO)," the OSCE said.


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