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Russian Federation Trying to Legitimise Deployment of Its ‘Peacekeepers’ in Donbas

OSCE Donbas

The leadership of the Ukrainian delegation to the Joint Control and Coordination Center (JCCC) sent a note to the Chief Monitor of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine concerning the provocative actions of Russian hybrid troops in the occupied territories of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions.

As the Ukrainian delegation to the Trilateral Contact Group (TCG) on the peaceful settlement of the situation in Donbas stated, Russia has recently taken a number of measures aimed at reviewing the previously reached OSCE-brokered ceasefire agreements.

In particular, these actions of the Russian Federation are aimed at assessing the reaction of the international community to the possible participation of servicepersons of the Russian Armed Forces in the JCCC as “… the only reliable way to facilitate the settlement of the conflict in eastern Ukraine.”

“Thus, on 27 February, a series of reports was filmed at the positions of one of the units of the 2nd Army Corps… with a focus on the possibility of improving the effectiveness of the ceasefire control through the involvement of Russian peacekeepers. At the same time, it is stated that such an assessment was allegedly given by representatives of the OSCE SMM from some countries of the Western Europe,” the statement reads.

The Ukrainian side believes that such provocative actions are aimed at discrediting the Mission and the coordination mechanism as an effective tool for the ceasefire control.

“This fact testifies to the reluctance of the Russian side to fulfill the commitments undertaken earlier and the agreements reached by the parties during the TCG meetings and in the Normandy format. It is in the strict observance of these agreements that an effective mechanism for a peaceful settlement lies,” the statement underscores.

As a reminder, the Joint Forces Operation Headquarters has repeatedly stated that Russian mercenaries provoke the Armed Forces into opening fire in order to further accuse the Ukrainian military of shelling. In several cases, the enemy fired on Ukrainian positions while simultaneously requesting the ceasefire, allegedly due to the attacks launched by the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

Bohdan Marusyak

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