This was announced by the US representative to the OSCE Daniel Bayer, reports Ukrinform.
“The United States remain deeply concerned about the escalation of hostilities in the contact line in eastern Ukraine. United-Russian separatist forces continue to violate its commitments to the cease-fire, shelling Ukrainian positions with artillery and small arms”, – he said.
In addition, Bayer drew attention to the fact that the militants continue to block free access of the OSCE representatives and treat them “with open hostility”. The representative of the United States noted that “on February 15, in Kominternove, they threatened to open fire against the observers’ mission again” – for the third time since January.
“Such threats are totally unacceptable, but Russia has never condemned these actions at the meeting of the OSCE Permanent Council – unlike any other country participating, which had its word”, – said Bayer.
“Separatists supported by Russia must ensure free, unimpeded access of SMM to persuade Ukraine and other 55 OSCE participating States in their intent to cease hostilities”, – stated Bayer.
It should be recalled that the OSCE declared 160 cases of interference with the mission’s work in 2016.
As it became known yesterday, the mandate of the Special monitoring mission of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE SMM) in Ukraine extended annually.