EU requests access of OSCE SMM to occupied Donbas

Source : 112 Ukraine

The militants did not allow OSCE observers to enter Donbas territory due to quarantine
15:40, 25 March 2020

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The European Union states about the importance of the unhindered access of the OSCE SMM to areas of Donetsk and Luhansk regions uncontrolled by Ukraine as Spokesperson of High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell stated.

“It is crucial that Russia and the armed formations that it backs allow the OSCE SMM, UN agencies, non-governmental organisations and the ICRC freedom of movement across the contact line,” the message said.

Moreover, the EU reminded that from March 21, the members of the armed formations denied the OSCE SMM in the access to the areas not controlled by the government. Moreover, the UN agencies, non-governmental organisations and the International Committee of the Red Cross also face difficulties in access.

“In line with its mandate, the SMM must have safe, secure and unhindered access throughout Ukraine, including parts of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions temporarily outside government control. Its unhindered access into and from non-government-controlled areas is essential for providing reliable information on the developments on the ground, as envisaged in the Minsk agreements, and enabling the implementation of its mandate throughout the country,” the message said.

Related: OSCE creates advisory council for solving situation in Donbas

It is underlined that the SMM adapted its monitoring activity in accordance with the terms appeared due to the global Covid-19 outbreak to provide the constant safety of all.

“In the current circumstances, it is even more essential that humanitarian aid to people in these areas continues to be delivered. UN agencies, non-governmental organisations and the International Committee of the Red Cross must have unimpeded access to those in need in the whole Donbas region,” Brussels noted.

Moreover, the EU noted that ‘a number of important developments’ took place in the Trilateral Contact Group recently, such as discussions on the prisoners’ swap and determination of new areas for disengagement.

Besides, Brussels assured once more that it remains steadfast in its support to Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity, the implementation of the Minsk agreements, and the work of the Normandy format and Trilateral Contact Group to achieve a sustainable and peaceful political solution to the conflict.

Related: OSCE notes significant increase in number of Donbas conflict victims

As we reported, at the checkpoint in Donetsk region, the militants did not allow the OSCE SMM patrols to enter the areas uncontrolled by the Ukrainian government due to quarantine 

Earlier, the Trilateral contact group for the solution of Donbas conflict (Minsk talks group) agreed on the creation of an advisory board. It will comprise of representatives of Ukraine and self-proclaimed 'republics' of Donbas (ten from each, with the right for decisive vote), Germany, France and the OSCE (one from each, with the right for conciliatory vote). 



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