Ukraine army's new positions after disengagement will be where they were in 2016 – General Staff

03:20, 08 October 2019
War
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REUTERS

Chief of the General Staff, Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, Lieutenant-General Ruslan Khomchak says that the withdrawal of troops in Donbas should be reciprocal and the parties should pull their weapons one kilometer away from the contact line on each side.

"The new positions of the Ukrainian military will be where they were in 2016, when the first attempt to pull back troops was made in the said area," he said during a working trip to the Joint Forces Operation zone, the Ukrainian Defense Ministry's press center said.

Read alsoDisengagement in Petrivske, Zolote in Donbas postponed due to shelling by Russian-led forces – MFA Ukraine

"Units of the Armed Forces of Ukraine will continue controlling the situation," he added.

Ukrainian Defense Minister Andriy Zagorodnyuk, in turn, said that the withdrawal of forces and weapons near the village of Petrivske and the town of Zolote could begin only when the Russian-occupying forces cease fire and observe the truce for at least seven days.

Zagorodnyuk emphasized that the Ukrainian military would pull back at a distance that would let them return immediately in case Russian-led forces violate the agreements. "All prerequisites have been created for this, a certain plan has been developed in case of such a situation," he said.

The disengagement positions are stipulated in the Minsk agreements, they were pinpointed on the map back in 2014, he added.

The minister also noted that after the completion of the disengagement, the tasks of controlling the demilitarized zone would be assigned to the National Police of Ukraine.

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