14:43 May. 24, 2016
Dmitry Peskov says, Russia has different understanding of armed OSCE mission
Russia supports additional deployment of the OSCE mission in the conflict areas of eastern Ukraine. However, the monitors must be positioned along the contact line only. According to the Kremlin's spokesperson Dmitry Peskov, the issue of the Ukrainian-Russian border control is out of the question.
"Minsk agreements make it very clear regarding the control of the border. There is nothing to discuss here. This document was signed by Ukraine and the rest of the Normandy format members", Peskov commented on the recent Normandy Four phone talks.
The spokesman added, the conditions of the OSCE patrols must be agreed upon by the Russian-backed separatists. He also said, Russia had its own understanding of the status of the observers.
"It's not a police mission. We understand it as a monitoring mission. Theoretically, they (observers) could be armed, but they are not military, so the question is, how they will use these weapons", Peskov said.
He also stated, the consultation on the mission would likely continue.
On May 23 the Normandy Four members (Ukraine, Germany, France and Russia) held phone talks regarding the Donbas conflict. Ukrainian President reported, deployment of armed OSCE mission was agreed upon. He also said, the observers must take control of the Russian-Ukrainian border. Moscow, in turn, insisted, the border issue would be discussed only after local elections in occupied parts of Donbas.