Russia won't support deployment of UN peacekeeping mission in Ukraine
Russia will not support the deployment of a UN peacekeeping mission in Ukraine, if the issue is raised in the UN Security Council, according to Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Gennadiy Gatilov, the BBC’s Russian Service has reported.
Gatilov said Moscow believes that the Minsk agreement is currently a sufficient basis through which to reach a settlement of the crisis in Ukraine.
"We believe that the Minsk agreement … clearly defines the monitoring role of the OSCE mission,” Gatilov said.
“And now we need to ensure that this monitoring mission is effective in supervising the implementation of the Minsk agreement. At present, it is sufficient."
According to the Minsk agreements, the OSCE is to monitor the ceasefire in the Donbas and the pullback of heavy weapons by both sides to agreed distances from the front line. The organization is also supposed to monitor the parts of the Ukrainian-Russian border that are not under the control of the Ukrainian authorities.
The Ukrainian authorities said on Thursday that they were starting the third stage of their withdrawal of heavy weapons, pulling back missile systems with the greatest ranges. They said the OSCE and international journalists were being given full access to monitor the withdrawal process.
Earlier in the week the OSCE said the militants in the east of Ukraine were not allowing the organization to fully monitor the withdrawal of their heavy weapons, or inspect all of the sites to which the militants say they have relocated them.
As UNIAN reported earlier, on February 18, the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine decided to address the UN and the EU with the request on deploying international peacekeeping mission in eastern Ukraine. According to members of the NSDC, the UN peacekeeping mission should be deployed along the demarcation line in the Donbas and uncontrolled areas of the state border with Russia.