Brussels, 11/08/2015

Statement by the Spokesperson on the recent escalation of fighting in eastern Ukraine

"The renewed escalation of the conflict raising the number of casualties, as a result of attacks on several government controlled areas today and in the night of 10 August on Starohnativka, violates the spirit and the letter of the Minsk Agreements. Equally, all recent incidents targeted at the OSCE SMM – including its monitors caught in cross-fire in Shchastya and Shyrokyne and, on 9 August, setting on fire the Mission's vehicles in Donetsk – put in danger the crucial role that the SMM plays in monitoring and verifying the implementation of the Minsk agreements, which is the basis for a sustainable solution of the conflict in full respect of Ukraine's independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity.

The Minsk Agreements must be implemented in good faith, starting with full observation of the ceasefire and genuine withdrawal of heavy weapons. Further impetus must be given to talks within the Trilateral Contact Group, allowing for complete implementation of the Minsk Agreements within the agreed timeframe by the end of the year."