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Published in Stream:
Ukraine Liveblog Day 157
Press by
The Interpreter
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Russia Rejects International Monitoring Of Russian Side Of The Border
3 years
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Many weeks ago, long before flight MH17 was shot down, Russia had tentatively agreed to a deal which was supposed to defuse the situation in Ukraine. Part of that deal would bring international monitors, the OSCE, into eastern Ukraine to ensure that all sides were complying with a ceasefire. While the ceasefire was ongoing, negotiations would be held to bring a permanent peace. And while all of that was going on (and this might be the most important part) Russia and Ukraine both agreed to allow international monitors on the border to ensure that no arms or fighters were crossing from one country to the other.

After initially agreeing to this measure, but after weeks of intensifying both the arming of rebels and the firing of GRAD rockets across the border, Russia is now rejecting the call to monitor the border. Here is an excerpt from a statement from the US mission to the OSCE:

U.S. Permanent Representative to the OSCE Ambassador, Daniel Baer, continued to express his strong disappointment with the Russian Federation’s violations. “As Russia continues to send arms across the border, almost as if to scorn the memory of those who have already perished because of Russian actions—I find it deeply disappointing that Russia was only willing to accept international observers at two small checkpoints on its border with Ukraine.”

Despite requests from a number of delegations to expand the geographic scope of the observer mission, Russia would accept only the most limited-scope mission, confined to just two posts –each of which is a few hundred meters wide on a land border nearly 2,000 kilometers in length.

“Let us be perfectly clear—this will not provide any real accounting of Russia’s massive flows of illegal arms, funding, and personnel,” Ambassador Baer stated. “Nor will this fig leaf provide an assurance to those mourning the tragedy of flight MH17 that Russia is doing anything to stop its illegal flow of arms and other support to separatists in eastern Ukraine.”

The Ambassador continued, “The attempted annexation of the Crimean region of Ukraine, and Russia’s unacceptable support for violent separatists in Ukraine’s east, have isolated Russia in the international community. As President Obama has made clear: continued Russian violations will bring increased costs.”