The Russian policy in Donbas is the source of the ongoing violence there; furthermore, the withdrawal of the Russian officers from the Joint Control and Coordination Centre is directly related to the latest escalation. Heather Nauert, the U.S. Department of the State representative said that at a recent briefing.
‘Unfortunately, the situation has not improved in Ukraine. Last night (December 19, - 112 International), Russian-led forces shelled the town of Novoluhanske with Grad rockets, wounding eight civilians and damaging dozens of homes, a school, and also a playground. Fighting also resumed around the Donetsk filtration station and its system of pipes carrying poisonous chlorine gas. This is considered extremely dangerous (...) Russia and its proxies are the sources of violence in eastern Ukraine, and the Russian Government continues to perpetuate an active conflict and humanitarian crisis through its leadership and supply of military forces on the ground, as well as its direct control over proxy authorities. The conflict in eastern Ukraine is not an organic civil war. The so-called “republics” that Russia created are not legitimate entities’, she said.
Nauert added that the U.S. urged Russia to cease fire in Donbas, withdraw its troops and say yes to the UN peacekeepers deployment there.