Ukraine

Latest from the Special Monitoring Mission (SMM) in Ukraine based on information received until 1 July 2014, 18:00 (Kyiv time)

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KYIV 2 July 2014

This update is provided for the media and the public.

Tensions remained in parts of Donbas. The situation was calm elsewhere across the country.

In Kharkiv the situation remained calm.

The situation in parts of the Luhansk and Donetsk regions was tense and unchanged compared to the previous reporting period.

In the northern part of the Luhansk region, the SMM monitored four checkpoints, with the main focus on the checkpoint at the Svatovo-Severodonetsk junction. The SMM observed military traffic and talked to local residents going into the conflict zone as well as people leaving it. The SMM observed a bus with women and children from Rubezhnoye (100 km north of Luhansk). The SMM talked to passengers on several buses travelling to Svatovo and Lisychansk respectively. Most of the passengers, having spent some time away from the conflict zone, were going back to look after their elderly relatives, who had not left.

The SMM observed heavy military equipment being transported by Ukrainian forces through the checkpoint towards Svatovo. A series of explosions could be heard in the far distance.

The SMM met the mayor of Donetsk city who said that he had recently had discussions with representatives of the so-called ‘Donetsk People’s Republic’. He said a possible prisoner exchange and the restoration of electricity and water supplies in Sloviansk had been discussed. The results, he said, were inconclusive.

The situation in Dnepropetrovsk, Kherson, Odessa, Chernivtsi, Ivano-Frankivsk and Lviv were calm.

In Chernitvsi the SMM observed at a Ukrainian military barracks, a group of about 50 civilians who were protesting against the deployment of the territorial defence battalion outside the region. The protesters were specifically worried about the soldiers being deployed in the Donbas region. The demonstrators succeeded in preventing a bus carrying military personnel from leaving the military premises, but two other buses did eventually leave. In the evening, a senior military official spoke with the demonstrators. The situation remained calm.

In Ivano-Frankivsk the local ’Self-Defence’ representative informed the SMM about their recent visit to eastern Ukraine where they delivered humanitarian aid. A two-ton lorry was used for delivering material and food to various military battalions.

The situation in Kyiv was calm. The SMM observed, on Maidan, the removal of barricades from the entrance of Khreshchatyk Street. The SMM monitored municipal workers removing the debris and half burnt tyres, of what used to be a 20th Sotnia tent and barricades. Concrete blocks that were blocking the traffic were removed with a hydraulic crane. Some 50 metres of the street were completely cleared. No incidents were reported.

The SMM observed approximately 400 demonstrators near the national parliament, the Verkhovna Rada, demanding that members of parliament adopt the law on the conversion of credit obligations from foreign currency to national currency. Due to inflation, the credit instalments taken years ago have increased by over 50%. Protestors from all over Ukraine were involved in the demonstration. Protests continued in front of the parliament where about 100 to 200 Maidan activists demonstrated. During the protests three explosive-type sounds were heard in front of the parliament. The SMM observed stun grenades and tear gas grenades being used. A fight occurred between Maidan ‘Self-Defence’ and members of Sotnia 17+. Three persons were injured. At 17.00 up to 300 ‘Self-Defence’ members were present. A large police presence was also observed.

The SMM met with displaced Crimean Tatars who complained that those of them living in Kyiv had not received an accommodation allowance from the government, and indeed, the only material support they had received as displaced people had come from civil society organizations (Kyiv-based NGO “Krim SOS”). According to them, however, the transfer of Ukrainian pensions and allowances for children and disabled people from Crimea to Kyiv has not been a problem.

Contacts

Olesia Oleshko

Media Analyst

OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine

26 Turgenevska Street

01054 Kyiv

Ukraine

Office: +380674662563

olesia.oleshko@osce.org

Michael Bociurkiw

Spokesperson

OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine

26 Turgenevska Street

01054 Kyiv

Ukraine

Office: +380 44 382 0832

Mobile: +38 067 4083107

michael.bociurkiw@osce.org