MINSK, 5 December (BelTA) – Instead of looking for a peaceful solution to the conflict, the sides seem to be moving in the opposite direction, Special Representative of the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office in Ukraine and in the Trilateral Contact Group (TCG), Ambassador Martin Sajdik said after the meeting of the Trilateral Contact Group in Minsk on 4 December, BelTA has learned.
“Despite the efforts of the TCG, tensions in and around the conflict zone have not declined. Instead of looking for a peaceful solution to the conflict, the sides seem to be moving in the opposite direction. I am deeply concerned about this situation, and once again I urge the sides to do their utmost to prevent any escalation,” Martin Sajdik said.
When asked to comment on the fact that Representative of Russia in the TCG Boris Gryzlov left the meeting, the special representative said that this had happened at the beginning of the statement of the Ukrainian delegation. “I can say that during our plenary session, Mr. Gryzlov left the meeting when Mr. Marchuk (representative of Ukraine in the TCG Yevgeny Marchuk) took the floor,” Martin Sajdik said.
In the Security Working Group, the participants further considered additional measures for ensuring a sustainable ceasefire and prepared for renewed ceasefire in connection with the Christmas and New Year holidays.
The Economic Working Group discussed such topics as water deliveries in the Karbonyt and Voda Donbasa supply systems as well as payments of pension for the residents of certain areas of Donetsk Oblast and Lugansk Oblast. The Humanitarian Working Group continued discussion on the issues related to the exchange of detainees. Besides, preparations for the envisaged transfer of detainees not related to the conflict in Donetsk Oblast and Lugansk Oblast to the territory controlled by the Ukrainian government were carefully considered. The Political Working Group continued exchanges on its traditional agenda – the implementation of the ‘Steinmeier formula', amnesty and the modalities of local elections in Donetsk Oblast and Lugansk Oblast as stipulated by the Minsk agreements.
"I really hope that we will have a really serious truce on the New Year and Christmas holidays," said Martin Sajdik.
The last meeting of the Trilateral Contact Group in 2018 is scheduled to take place on 19 December. Meetings will resume in mid-January 2019.
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