A special UN mission is crucial to ensuring the disengagement of the conflicting parties in Donbass, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Wednesday.

“The proposal was made because for many months the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission in Ukraine has had problems with maintaining the security of its personnel. For many months the agreement achieved by the Normandy Quartet leaders on the disengagement of parties has failed to be implemented,” Lavrov said.

He explained that “specific parameters of the UN mission, including coordination of the national contingents, must be agreed by parties to the conflict, which implies mandatory involvement of the Donetsk and Lugansk republics in the process.”

“Nothing is being done, though. Even the first three pilot zones where disengagement should take place have not been formalized yet as security areas,” Lavrov said. “Each time the Ukrainian counterparts demand that the disengagement of forces and weapons should be preceded by seven days of calm,” he added.

Lavrov recalled that although OSCE monitors confirmed a week-long pause on eight occasions the authorities in Kiev keep alleging there have been ceasefire violations. He believes Kiev ignores the instructions from the Normandy Quartet’s leaders on the excuse “its monitors are exposed to risks.”

“If there does exist a problem with ensuring the security of these monitors, then we will be prepared to support the idea, proposed many a time, for creating a UN mission that would be called UN Mission for the Protection of Observers of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission,” Lavrov said. “We suggest the UN Security Council adopt a resolution stating that immediately after the disengagement of forces and weapons OSCE observers should enter the area and appropriate forces and equipment be deployed there for the protection of monitors.”.

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