Ukraine

OSCE Chief Monitor in Ukraine condemns targeting of monitors and seizure of unmanned aerial vehicle

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KYIV, 24 February 2017 - Chief Monitor of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine (SMM) Ertugrul Apakan today condemned the targeting of SMM monitors and the seizure of an SMM mini-unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) by “DPR” members.

The incident occurred at around 14:30 on 24 February in “DPR”-controlled Yasynuvata, north of Donetsk city. An SMM patrol was attempting to launch a UAV, intending to monitor the alleged shelling of the Donetsk water filtration station, when armed men pointed their weapons at them, advanced towards them and seized the UAV, after which one of the men opened fire which impacted close to the SMM patrol.

“Firing at unarmed civilian monitors is not only a direct threat to the lives of brave men and women doing their best to bring peace to Ukraine,” Apakan said, “it is a direct challenge to the collective will of the 57 OSCE participating States, and to the Minsk agreements.”

Apakan insisted that those responsible be held accountable and that there should be no impunity for these acts. “Threatening SMM monitors and otherwise impeding the work of the SMM serves only to delay resolution of the conflict,” he said.

Contacts:

Alexandra Taylor
26 Turhenievska Street
01054 Kyiv
Ukraine
mobile: +380 67 650 31 57
alexandra.taylor@osce.org

Mariia Aleksevych
26 Turhenievska Street
01054 Kyiv
Ukraine
office: +380 44 392 0832
mobile: +380 50 381 5192
mobile: +380 93 691 6790
mariia.aleksevych@osce.org