Kyiv, March 26, 2015. The first OSCE patrol has successfully completed the monitoring of the situation around Shyrokyne. The second patrol is currently in the village, stated Michael Bociurkiw, spokesman of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine, during the press-briefing at Ukraine Crisis Media Center. “We welcome the changes aimed toward de-escalation of tensions in this area on the contact line. Alexander Hug, Deputy Chief Monitor at OSCE SMM, will give a briefing from Mariupol today,” Mr. Bociurkiw said.
Michael Bociurkiw noted that numerous settlements in the frontline areas have been desolated as a result of the conflict. In Donetskyi, Luhansk region, only 500 are living there out of the pre-conflict population of 3,500. Local residents have been deprived from gas, power and water supply; the infrastructure left in tatters. Many people are still afraid of sniper fire and mortar attacks. “In early March, the mission addressed representatives of the International Committee of the Red Cross. There are signs that things change for the better as the locals got humanitarian aid and construction materials to repair their homes,” Mr. Bociurkiw said.
He also noted that the belligerents started to provide inventory lists about their heavy weapons, which were withdrawn according to Minsk agreements. We hope that ceasefire and other steps toward a peaceful resolution of the conflict shall continue,” the OSCE SMM spokesperson concluded.