Mittwoch, 21.08.2019 21:03 Uhr

Osce and Ukraine: Trilateral Contact Group

Verantwortlicher Autor: Carlo Marino Rome/Minsk, 18.01.2019, 09:36 Uhr
Nachricht/Bericht: +++ Politik +++ Bericht 4486x gelesen

Rome/Minsk [ENA] With 57 participating States in North America, Europe and Asia, the OSCE – the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe – is the world’s largest regional security organization. The OSCE acts for stability, peace and democracy for more than a billion people, through political dialogue about shared values and through practical work whose purposes are to make a lasting difference. OSCE decisions are adopted

by consensus by the participating States and reflect their agreed views. They are politically binding. Ukraine is one of the largest countries on the European continent (603 000 km2) and is home to 44 million inhabitants. The country became independent in 1991 with the disintegration of the Soviet Union. Since then it has conducted a multi-vector policy attempting to balance between the European Union and Russia. This policy was questioned by the Ukrainian society in 2004 during the Orange Revolution and again in 2014 in the Maidan Revolution, during which Ukrainians openly showed that they would prefer to cooperate closer with the European Union.

Since the beginning of 2014, Ukraine’s territorial integrity is compromised. The Russian forces had annexed the Crimean Peninsula and the Russian-backed separatists are occupying parts of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions in the east of the country. Ukraine since 2004 is also a direct neighbour of the European Union. The Special Representative of the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office in Ukraine and in the Trilateral Contact Group (TCG), Ambassador Martin Sajdik, made the following statement to the press on 18 January 2019 after the meeting of the Trilateral Contact Group ‎and its Working Groups in Minsk on 17 January 2019: “The TCG and its Working Groups convened today for the first time this year. Looking at our achievements last year,

I would like to highlight a significant decrease in the number of civilian casualties, by more than half compared with 2017. This is an important outcome. Even so, however, I always say and I will repeat again today that every human victim is one too many. I also would like to mention the Statement by the Trilateral Contact Group on recommitment to the ceasefire adopted in late 2018 on the occasion of the New Year and Christmas holidays. As its result, the number of ceasefire violations from 29 December to the day before yesterday decreased more than by half compared with the previous two-week period. However, in the in recent days, the number of ceasefire violations has tended to rise.

Compliance with the ceasefire was thus the major topic for the Security Working Group. In this regard, I once again call on the sides to take all steps necessary to prevent civilian casualties, protect critical infrastructure and ensure a sustainable ceasefire. Safeguarding decent living conditions for civilians in the conflict zone is the key priority of the new OSCE Chairmanship in the current year, Foreign Minister of Slovakia, Miroslav Lajčak. The Economic Working Group has considered current issues of water delivery in the "Karbonyt" and "Voda Donbasa" supply systems. The sides agreed to conduct an audit of the "Voda Donbasa" company, with ICRC assistance. Another discussion topic has been the payment of pensions to residents of

certain areas of Donetsk and Luhansk regions (CADR and CALR). Today was Per Fisher’s last meeting as Co-ordinator of the Economic Working Group. On behalf of the TCG and on my own behalf, I would like to express deep gratitude for his invaluable contribution to solving the many issues that are vital for the population in the conflict zone. I also want to greet the new Co-ordinator of the Economic Working Group, an experienced diplomat, former German Ambassador to the Russian Federation, Ulrich Brandenburg. I am confident that his profound professional experience will contribute to the continued successful work of the Group.

The Humanitarian Working Group further discussed the issues related to the exchange of detainees. The Political Working Group took forward its exchanges on its well-known agenda, namely the implementation of the ‘Steinmeier formula’, amnesty and the modalities of local elections in CADR and CALR as stipulated by the Minsk agreements.” This has been the political statement based on facts by the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office Ambassador Martin Sajdik.

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