Foreign Minister Steinmeier on attacks on the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission in eastern Ukraine

27.05.2016 - Press release

Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, speaking also in his capacity as OSCE Chairperson‑in‑Office, today (27 May) issued the following statement in Berlin on the latest reports of attacks on the work of the OSCE monitors:

It is with great concern that I have heard reports that shots were fired in the direction of an OSCE Special Monitoring Mission patrol at the contact line and that an OSCE drone was shot down near Horlivka. Such assaults against the civilian, unarmed monitoring mission are completely unacceptable. They are the latest in a line of serious impediments to the work of the SMM, including the disabling of two monitoring cameras at Donetsk airport a week ago. Such actions undermine our joint efforts to sustainably consolidate the ceasefire in eastern Ukraine.

I call on all sides to adhere to what has been agreed. This includes guaranteeing in full the monitors’ safety and their free and unfettered access to the entire conflict area. Those responsible for attacks on the SMM must be held accountable.

A sustainable ceasefire is urgently needed, not least to ensure progress at last on the implementation of the Minsk agreements.

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