Monitors from the OSCE, which is monitoring the ceasefire between Kiev and separatist rebels in east Ukraine, told FRANCE 24 on Monday that the truce is not being respected in critical areas nor with regard to the withdrawal of heavy weapons.
Alexander Hug, the deputy chief monitor of the special mission to Ukraine for the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), warned that fighting had continued over the weekend and urged both Ukrainian troops and Russian-backed rebels to disclose information about the current positions of the heavy artillery that is to be pulled back from the front line as part of the ceasefire agreement.
“The [OSCE] mission concludes that the ceasefire is not holding in critical, strategic points, such as to the east of the city of Mariupol, at and around the Donetsk airport, and in the city of Debaltseve, to which we had access only last Saturday,” Hug told FRANCE 24 from Kiev.
Hug said residents of the now rebel-held town of Debaltseve were in a “dire situation” and urged the warring sides to uphold the terms of the agreement, which was carved out in the Belarusian capital of Minsk earlier this month, notably the withdrawal of heavy artillery on both sides.
“We need to have certain baseline information, and we call on the parties to tell us where the weapons are now, what roads will be taken to take them out and where they will store these weapons once they have withdrawn them,” Hug said.
To watch FRANCE 24’s full interview with the OSCE’s Alexander Hug, click on the player above.