LUGANSK, September 9 (Lugansk Media Centre) - Representatives of Ukraine and the Donetsk People’s Republic agreed at the extraordinary Contact Group videoconference to jointly inspect Kiev forces’ positions in the Shumy settlement area, Lugansk People’s Republic representative to the Minsk talks, LPR Foreign Minister Vladislav Deinego told the Lugansk Media Centre.
“The video conference has ended. An accord has been reached on joint inspection of ukrainian trenches in the Shumy settlement area (DPR area of response) by the Joint Centre for Control and Coordination in the current membership (DPR militia representatives at JCCC and Ukrainian army representatives at JCCC) to assess the existence of the fact of violation of Item a) of the additional ceasefire control measures,” Deinego said.
The Donetsk People’s Republic initiated the extraordinary Contact Group meeting stating that Ukrainian forces had organised positions in the area of the Kiev-controlled Shumy settlement outside Gorlovka in violation of the additional ceasefire control measures.
The Contact Group agreed the tighter ceasefire control measures in Donbass starting at 00:01, July 27 at the July 22 videoconference. The Additional Measures to Strengthen the Ceasefire include: ban on offensive or reconnaissance operations, ban on using any aerial vehicles, ban on fire, including sniper fire; ban on deployment of heavy weapons to populated areas and adjacent territories, first of all, to civilian infrastructure, including schools, kindergartens, hospitals and public premises; effective implementation of disciplinary measures against violators of the ceasefire and notification the Contact Group Coordinator thereof, who further notifies all its participants; establishing and employing a coordination mechanism for reacting to ceasefire violations with assistance of the JCCC with its current membership; retaliatory fire in case of an offensive is allowed only in case it is opened on the order of appropriate command of the Ukrainian armed forces or LPR, DPR People's Militia after unsuccessful attempt to employ the above mentioned mechanism. The Contact Group shall be notified of such orders; .
The members of the Contact Group have announced ceasefire more than 20 times since the autumn of 2014. Kiev forces regularly violated the truce opening fire with large calibre artillery, mortars and tank guns which were to have been withdrawn in accordance with the Minsk agreements.
Ukrainian government launched the so-called anti-terrorist operation against Donbass in April 2014. Conflict settlement relies on the Package of Measures for the Implementation of the Minsk Agreements, signed on February 12, 2015 in the Belarussian capital by the Contact Group members and coordinated by the Normandy Four heads of states (Russia, Germany, France and Ukraine). The UN Security Council approved the document by Resolution No 2202 of February 17, 2015 and called upon the parties to ensure its implementation.
The document provides for comprehensive ceasefire, withdrawal of all heavy weapons from the contact line, starting a dialog on reconstruction of social and economic ties between Kiev and Donbass. It also envisages carrying out constitutional reform in Ukraine providing for decentralization and adopting permanent legislation on a special status of certain areas of the Donetsk and Lugansk regions.