OSCE Special Monitoring Mission (OSCE SMM) plans to increase the number of disengagement zones to 20 after the extension of its mandate in Donbas. This was reported in an interview to TASS by Lamberto Zannier, the OSCE Secretary General.
"We have prepared the budget, we will present it the following weeks. Mandate expires in the end of March and I do not expect any problems with its extension. All the sides have been clear and supported this operation," he noted.
"We are considering the target of 800 people in the current situation. If we open more disengagement areas (we are planning up to 20 zones in terms of our budget), we will have to grow our presence. But there is no need to increase the number of observers to 1 thousand people. We will "grow" in terms of this limit, there is room for maneuver," Zannier said, adding that there are restrictions for observers’ movement in the areas controlled by militants.
"I would want to have more people there, but there is no sense to do that currently," he noted.
Secretary General assessed the situation in Donbas as "not very good" overall. According to him, the organization is concerned with the affected civilians and infrastructure.
There is a disengagement agreement in Donbas regarding three areas: Stanytsia Luhanska, Zolote and Petrivske.