On March 5 at 12:55, when an OSCE Special Monitoring Mission patrol consisting of six members and two armoured vehicles was heading from west to east on a road in Kozatske, it saw a man in military-type attire armed with an assault rifle (AK-74) standing at a checkpoint of the armed formations on the eastern edge of the village. The SMM also saw him pointing the assault rifle directly at the first SMM vehicle, which was then about 120m west of the checkpoint. The message on the OSCE website says.
“When the SMM reached a distance of approximately 100m west of the checkpoint, it saw the man kneel down and continue to point his rifle at the SMM vehicle. The SMM immediately stopped there. The driver of the first SMM patrol vehicle then slightly opened the door and asked the man to lower his rifle and call his superior. The armed man used hostile language and said, in Russian, “Leave immediately, and if you come closer, I will shoot,” while continuously pointing his rifle directly at the first SMM vehicle,” it is stated.
The SMM immediately left the area towards the west and returned safely to its base in Mariupol.
As it was reported earlier Ertuğrul Apakan, the Head of the Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine, welcomed the Trilateral Contact Group’s recommitment to the ceasefire in Donbas from March 5. It is expected that the restoration of the obligations, agreed in Minsk on February 28, will come into effect at 00:01 am Kyiv time on March 5.
The last ceasefire in the Donbas conflict zone came into effect on midnight on December 23. The sides agreed on this during the Trilateral Contact Group session in Minsk on December 20. The parties confirmed their commitment to Minsk Agreement. Later it was reported that the militants continued violation the ceasefire by firing Ukrainian positions.