Truce too important for stabilization to be carelessly put at risk, Swiss OSCE Chair says after new outbreak of violence
BERN, 2 October 2014 – Appalled by the killing of ten persons in a school during shelling yesterday in Donetsk, and by the violent death of a member of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) delegation today, Swiss Foreign Minister and OSCE Chairperson-in-Office, Didier Burkhalter, urged all sides to immediately stop fighting, to strictly observe the ceasefire and to implement the measures agreed upon in the Minsk Protocol of September 5 and the related Memorandum of September 19. He expressed his condolences to the families of the many men, women and children who lost their lives due to the violent conflict.
Concerned about the new worrying developments, Burkhalter reiterated that the ceasefire represented a real opportunity for a sustainable de-escalation of the situation; to put it at risk would be irresponsible and deplorable. The civilian population, suffering already for months from the violence in the region, was impatiently expecting the return to normal life. He underlined the importance of the work of humanitarian agencies for easing the suffering of people in need, particularly in view of the approaching winter. He concluded by calling on all sides to ensure the safety of aid workers and all civilian population and to act in compliance with international humanitarian law.