Ukraine's Defense Minister Andriy Zagorodnyuk says the disengagement of forces and weapons along the entire contact line in Donbas, the country's east, contradicts the Minsk peace agreements.
"We've very seriously examined this issue at the Defense Ministry, the General Staff, and other law enforcement agencies, at meetings of the National Security and Defense Council. The main thing was that this, firstly, contradicts the Minsk agreements. The Minsk agreements stipulate that foreign military units should leave Ukraine and illegal armed formations should be disarmed and disbanded. Of course, if old agreements were replaced by new ones, the new ones would take priority, and the new ones could be about the disengagement. But this would actually make any efforts to implement this [security] part of the Minsk agreements more complicated," he said in an interview for RFE/RL's Ukrainian service.
Zagorodnyuk says the disengagement doesn't change the security situation in Donbas.
"Because if the other side has the political will to escalate the conflict – two kilometers will not make any difference. This is not a problem for [enemy] snipers, for sabotage and reconnaissance groups," he added.
As UNIAN reported earlier, the disengagement of troops and weapons of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and Russia-led forces near the village of Stanytsia Luhanska took place in June 2019.
Forces and weapons near the town of Zolote were withdrawn on October 29, which was followed by the disengagement of forces near the villages of Bohdanivka and Petrivske on November 9-11.