The situation in the Donbas is unstable and can worsen at any time. This was announced in the middle of April 2017 by the first deputy head of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission, Alexander Khug. “There is a risk that the situation will worsen, the situation is very unstable, it can worsen at any moment,” he said. According to him, all elements necessary for the escalation of violence exist. “The sides are too close to each other, they have heavy weapons, they are very well prepared and are constantly on standby,” summed up the first deputy head of the OSCE mission. The OSCE maintains that the militants have been systematically obstructed by the work of the mission in the Donbas.
Earlier, Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine Oleksandr Turchynov said that over the past year the forces of the ATU did not surrender a single meter of land. “Therefore, I believe that our task is to meter by meter, kilometer by kilometer, minimizing losses, to move east.” The main thing is not to cross the border, “the Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine stated smiling.
On March 29, 2017 in Minsk, at a meeting of the Tripartite Contact Group for the settlement of the conflict in the east of Ukraine, an agreement was reached on a complete ceasefire in the ATU zone from April 1 to the Easter holidays. However, the occupants did not adhere to the regime of silence for a day. To date, since the beginning of the Easter holidays, there have been dead and wounded from among Ukrainian servicemen.
As for Ukraine’s obligations under the Minsk agreements, it should be noted that a cease-fire and the removal of heavy weapons from the contact line are possible only with the participation of all parties. The withdrawal of the Ukrainian army and military equipment unilaterally would only benefit the terrorist organizations operating in the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine and would not contribute to a peaceful settlement in the region.
Ukraine declares its absolute openness and insists on the presence of observers in the zone of the line of contact. Nevertheless, Russia’s military presence, denied both by pro-Russian separatists and Moscow itself, prevents the OSCE from conducting a monitoring mission. For example, the unmanned aerial vehicles used by it have been repeatedly knocked down.
Based on the daily reports on the OSCE mission, it can be stated that the joint forces of Russia and the separatists do not lack ammunition, military equipment, qualified personnel or fuel in order to carry out relevant activities. Ukraine also does not believe the explanations offered by Russian diplomacy that all these materials were allegedly “found” in mines in warehouses of the Soviet era in the Donbass. However sincerely Ukraine wants to recognize Russia not connected with the conflict, the reality and documented presence of Russian military in the Donbass prove otherwise.