Bezsmertny: Ukraine, Russia disagree on role of OSCE police mission in Donbas
Ukraine’s representative in Minsk Contact Group said local elections impossible under current conditions
Kyiv and Moscow cannot agree on the role and main tasks of the OSCE police mission in war-torn eastern Ukraine. Roman Bezsmertny, Ukraine’s delegate in the political subgroup of the Minsk Trilateral Contact Group, said this in a commentary to Segodnya newspaper.
According to him, Russia expects that the OSCE will only control the division line between government-controlled and militant-held territories of Donbas. Ukraine, on the other hand, supports the idea of joint patrolling of the entire combat area by the Ukrainian police, an international police corps and local militants.
“You see, it’s about safety during elections and patrolling. But we can’t accept the solution the way Russians understand it. They offer that OSCE only patrols the area along the division line, while we are interested in patrolling of the whole region. As for the local elections in Donbas, it’s simply impossible to hold them there, because there is no security there. For OSCE, the word “security” means that it will be safe in Donbas before, during and after elections. To ensure public safety during elections means to withdraw military units from the area. No election can be held on the territory filled with troops, all the more foreign troops”, Bezsmertny said.
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