OSCE police mission in Donbas: points of view
Kosovo and Kyrgyzstan have demonstrated that OSCE police mission is not able to fulfill the security tasks
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Why the Ukrainian government invites the OSCE police mission?
President Petro Poroshenko insists that before holding local elections in Donbas, security of the voters, the residents, and the independent observers must be guaranteed. To do this Ukraine must have the control over its eastern borders. Russia categorically disagrees on it.
Intermediary country took the position "neither this nor that"; according to them, fulfillment of Minsk agreements should take place in parallel with the election process.
Poroshenko offered to involve the UN peacekeepers. This decision has to be accepted by the UN Security Council; as a member, Russia might veto this decision.
Thus the Ukrainian side has an alternative to invite the OSCE police mission. But the questions of the mission’s contest, its weapons, and its location are still opened.
If you go to the OSCE website and look at the examples of other police missions, it becomes clear that they represent mainly the projects for training local police. It is not about maintenance of law and order.
Ukrainian politicians have an idea to create a peacekeeping mission which should:
- establish control over the occupied Donbas territories through controlling the contact line, places of deployment of heavy weapons;
- restore control over the Ukrainian-Russian border;
- ensure security of the elections;
- legally transfer power to elected representatives of the local government.
No other OSCE police mission has fulfilled those tasks.
For example, in Kosovo, OSCE police were training the local police. Actually, they do it so far. Peacekeeping activities were provided and are still provided by KFOR (Kosovo Force), acting under the direction of NATO. A police mission with a UN mandate was also deployed.
In 2010, Kyrgyzstan tried to do something alike. Both missions that worked there (Group of police advisers and Public Safety Initiative in Kyrgyzstan) failed to complete their goals and objectives.
Nursultan Nazarbayev, President of Kazakhstan, managed to persuade Kurmanbek Bakiyev to give up the power and leave the country. But the riots have not stopped. OSCE policemen, known as Public Safety Initiative, were invited restore peace in Kyrgyzstan. Nevertheless, later the government declared that the presence of foreign police is not desirable.
So ultimately the pro-Russian elements launched their propaganda, and it stopped the international mission because the government did not dare to lose popularity in the region. This is slightly reminiscent of the situation in Donbas.
Ukrainian authorities are in no hurry to return to Ukraine several million disloyal voters. Discussion of the return of these areas can lead to the collapse of the political career, which clearly showed the story of Nadiya Savchenko; she mentioned the possibility of direct dialogue with the leaders of the Russian-backed militants.
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