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Published in Stream:
Day 926: August 31, 2016
Press by
The Interpreter
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Poroshenko Says Ceasefire, Due To Come Into Effect At Midnight, Depends On Putin
3 years
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Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, who is today visiting Mariupol, near the front line in the Donetsk region, has stated that France and Germany have lent their support to his proposal for a full ceasefire to come into effect from tomorrow.

Ukrainska Pravda reports that an agreement was reached on an indefinite ceasefire at a meeting of the Contact Group in Minsk a few days ago.

Ukrainian military commanders said on Monday that they were prepared to abide by a "regime of silence," despite continued violations of the Minsk agreements by Russian-backed forces.

Today Poroshenko said, while attending the re-opening of a kindergarten just outside Mariupol:

"Our partners from France and Germany have supported Ukraine's initiative on a ceasefire from September 1. We await Putin's decision."

Meanwhile in Russia's far-eastern city of Vladivostok, Dmitry Peskov, President Putin's press secretary, told state media that the Kremlin supported the agreement reached in Minsk but excused Russia from any accountability on its implementation.

According to the Kremlin of course, Russia is not a party to the conflict. Instead, Peskov said that he hoped that Ukraine and the supposedly independent separatists would adhere to the ceasefire.

In another empty gesture, Peskov said that the Kremlin was calling on the OSCE to provide the necessary assistance in monitoring the ceasefire "within the framework of the existing mandate."

This belies the fact that Russia refuses to grant the OSCE access to almost all of the border area controlled by their troops and proxies, and that several OSCE observation drones have been shot down in recent months by Russian surface-to-air missile systems operating in Ukrainian territory.

Meanwhile, reports from the north Donetsk area this evening indicate that there is certainly no sign of a ceasefire yet, with less than five hours to go until the deadline: 

Translation: From the direction of the highway between Butovka and the Yasinovataya checkpoint can hear small-arms fighting and shots from a tank.
Translation: Can hear explosions from the direction of the airport.
Translation: They began pounding early today. Evidently the evening will not be boring.

Translation: From the north one can hear the sounds of the regime of silence.

-- Pierre Vaux