Use of heavy weapons in Donbas undermines confidence between the sides / Photo from UNIAN

Special Representative of the OSCE's Chairperson-in-Office in Ukraine and in the Trilateral Contact Group (TCG) Ambassador Heidi Grau has said the use of heavy weapons in Donbas undermines confidence between the sides.

She made the following statement to the press on June 9 after regular meetings of the TCG ‎and its Working Groups held through video conferencing, as reported on the OSCE's official website.

"The level of ceasefire violations has decreased in recent weeks. However, the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine (SMM) continues to record the use of heavy weapons deployed in violation of the withdrawal lines. In addition, the Mission has observed a deterioration of the security situation in the disengagement areas. Such trends undermine confidence between the sides," she said.

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Read alsoZelensky: Russian escalation possible at any moment up to late SeptemberAccording to Grau, compliance with the ceasefire was in the focus of the discussions of the Working Group on Security Issues and the TCG. "Participants continued to discuss proposals on the coordination mechanism, the differences in positions remained however significant," she said.

Also, procedural issues again dominated the discussions of the Political Working Group, preventing the development of an action plan in full compliance with the Minsk agreements as tasked by the TСG. The official said overcoming disagreements require constructive engagement, interaction and readiness to compromise.

In addition, the Humanitarian Working Group addressed obstacles to the simultaneous opening of new crossing points near the towns of Zolote and Schastia in Luhansk region. The participants discussed the mutual release and exchange of conflict-related detainees and exchanged information as regards missing persons.

What is more, the Economic Working Group focused on water supply issues in certain areas of Donetsk and Luhansk regions of Ukraine (CADLR), especially in the area of activities of the public utility enterprise "Voda Donbassa." The topic of pension payments was also given consideration during the discussions. In addition, there was an intensive exchange on environmental issues.

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