German and French foreign ministries consider Russia and pro-Kremlin militants to be responsible for the downing of the OSCE SMM drone. The respective statement appeared on the website of the German diplomatic authority on Thursday.
As we reported, the device was shot down over the militant-held section of Donetsk region on October 27.
'Germany and France, as members of the Normandy format, strongly condemn the destruction of the SMM long-range unmanned aerial vehicle (LR UAV) in the early hours of 27 October near Nyzhniokrynske, in an area not controlled by the Ukrainian government, close to the Russian-Ukrainian border, and recall that those responsible for attacks perpetrated to the SMM’s personnel and equipment should be held accountable. Evidence collected by SMM suggests Russia and the separatists it backs bear responsibility for the targeting and downing of the LR UAV, blinding the mission at this particular spot. In recent weeks, the SMM’s UAV, while being heavily jammed, observed on multiple occasions convoys entering Ukrainian territory across a non-official border crossing point from Russia into Ukraine. Before the loss of communication, the SMM UAV spotted a surface-to-air missile system,' the statement reads.
Germany and France claim that Russia, as a Minsk agreement party, assumes special responsibility for providing free and safe access of the OSCE observers and their equipment,' the statement said.