: OSCE armed mission possible only after ceasefire – US envoy

17:37 Jul. 29, 2016

OSCE armed mission possible only after ceasefire – US envoy

Daniel Baer, U.S Representative to the Permanent Council of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, OSCE, speaks at the Hofburg palace in Vienna, Austria, March 20, 2014. (AP Photo)

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The issue of sending an armed OSCE police mission to eastern Ukraine can be discussed only after the ceasefire is restored. That's according to Daniel Baer, US's representative in the OSCE.

"The focus is on the ceasefire restoration, which is a prerequisite for everything else," Baer said during a Friday telephone press conference. "We must see to additionally assess when it's stable cease-fire, what additional safety tools may be needed and may be possible. Obviously, one of the options being discussed by some, is a police mission, a security presence of some sort, and SMM will continue to be an unarmed mission."

Read also We have not lost hope to agree pullback of forces: OSCE rep after next round of Minsk talks

US OSCE ambassador also said the situation in eastern Ukraine combat zone has deteriorated gravely during the last several weeks. He underlined Russia continues supplying separatist forces with weapons and equipment, and making provocations against Ukrainian soldiers.

US ambassador to Ukraine, Geoffrey Pyatt, who also participated in the press conference, stated the need for granting access to the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission by the Russian-backed separatist forces.

Read also Russia continues to fuel conflict in eastern Ukraine – US Ambassador

He added Ukraine has complied with most of its obligations under the Minsk agreements.

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