18:18 May. 5, 2016
Alexander Hug says heavy weapons in Luhansk and Donetsk ahead of May 9 parade are violations of Minsk
Principal Deputy Chief Monitor of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission (SMM) to Ukraine Alexander Hug says that OSCE drones have spotted a large concentration of weapons near government-controlled Svitlodarsk in Donbas, Ukraine's east.
"South-east of government-controlled Svitlodarsk, our unmanned aerial vehicles have been recording a large concentration of weaponry in violation of the Minsk agreements," Hug said at a briefing in Kyiv on Thursday.
Hug also commented on Donbas militants' plans to stage a V-Day parade in Luhansk on May 9.
"When I see the so-called "LPR" [Luhansk People's Republic] bringing in heavy weapons into Luhansk city, I am, however, not entirely convinced that everyone understands the urgency involved. Everyone has a right to express their cultural and historical heritage, particularly when it comes to marking the 9 May Victory Day. Heavy weapons in the middle of a major city are not an honour; they are simply a violation of the Minsk accords and a threat to the people living in that area," he said.
As was announced by LPR representatives, more than 1,000 men and 74 combat vehicles will take part in the V-Day parade in Luhansk on May 9.
According to them, the mechanized column will incorporate artillery systems (35 pieces), armor – T-72 tanks, BMP-2 and BTR-80 – 21 vehicles in all, trucks, a tow truck and cars.