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The Slovak OSCE Chairmanship is deeply concerned about the news regarding granting Russian citizenship to Ukrainians in Russia-occupied Donbas, eastern Ukraine.

"It was with deep concern that the Slovak OSCE Chairmanship received the news about the decree signed by the President of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin, on simplifying the procedure of granting Russian citizenship to Ukrainians residing in certain areas of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions of Ukraine," the OSCE said in a statement on April 25, 2019.

Read alsoUkraine at UNSC urges Kremlin to cancel decree on Russian passports in Donbas

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"The Slovak Chairmanship believes that this unilateral measure could undermine the efforts for a peaceful resolution of the crisis in and around Ukraine, and calls for adherence to the OSCE principles and commitments by all its participating States," it said.

In this regard, the Chairmanship invites all sides to refrain from unilateral steps and to jointly continue searching for ways how to fully implement the Minsk agreements.

"Additionally, the Chairmanship reiterates its call for a sustainable, full and permanent ceasefire and its firm support for the work of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine, which plays an essential role in reducing tensions on the ground, and in fostering peace, stability and security," the statement said.

As UNIAN reported earlier, Russian President Vladimir Putin on April 24 signed a decree simplifying the procedure to grant Russian citizenship to people living in Russian-occupied Donbas, eastern Ukraine.