Latest from OSCE Special Monitoring Mission (SMM) to Ukraine, based on information received as of 18:00 (Kyiv time), 14 November 2014
This report is for media and the general public.
The SMM continued to monitor the situation in the Luhansk and Donetsk regions, focusing on the implementation of the Minsk Protocol and Memorandum.
The situation remained calm in Kharkiv.
The “minister of justice” of the “Luhansk People’s Republic” (“LPR)” told the SMM in Luhansk that there was no “legislation” regulating the implementation of the “LPR” “constitution”. He said he hoped a criminal procedural code would be introduced, which, he said, would guarantee individual rights by, for instance, limiting the length of pre-trial detention and introducing a requirement for search warrants. The “minister” added that “the ‘LPR’ is currently under military authority”.
The “LPR” “acting mayor” of Luhansk city told the SMM that the city, whose pre-conflict population, he said, was 470,000, had at one point during the conflict dropped to 160-170,000. He estimated that it currently stood at 380-400,000. He said his figures were based on calculations performed for the purpose of allocating social allowances, which, he said were provided to disabled people, single mothers and large families. He added that a number of enterprises in the city – including a locomotive factory – were operational, but employees were not being paid. He said his administration was providing free hot meals to these people. Previously, an “LPR” “police officer” told the SMM that “LPR” “police officers” do not receive cash-payments for their work but are instead provided with food. (See Daily Report of 12 November 2014)
In the government-controlled villages of Andreyevka (68km south of Donetsk) and Mirnoye (75km south of Donetsk), village council representatives and inhabitants told the SMM that pensions and salaries had not been paid since August, because, they said, the administrative centre in Telmanove (78km south of Donetsk) was under the control of the “Donetsk People’s Republic” (“DPR”). Some inhabitants, they said, had overcome this problem by re-registering in a government-controlled district.
In Druzhkivka (70km north of Donetsk), the SMM spoke to the publisher of a local newspaper, who said that he had been forced to cease publication and leave the town when it came under “DPR” control in May. He said his name was placed on a “DPR” “list of enemies” because of his independent editorial stance. He did not return until government forces re-took the town in July.
At the HQ of the Joint Centre for Control and Co-ordination (JCCC) in Debaltseve (55km north-east of Donetsk), the SMM discussed with the Russian and Ukrainian JCCC heads discrepancies between the line of contact agreed upon on 19 September and the current situation on the ground. The Russian logbook recorded 46 violations of the ceasefire in the previous 24 hours, whereas the Ukrainians recorded 51 violations for the same period of time.
Russian and Ukrainian members of the JCCC in “DPR”-controlled Telmanove (78km south of Donetsk) told the SMM that they had been obliged to re-locate their office after it had been shelled on 12 November. The SMM noted that some windows in the former office were broken and that there was a shell crater 30 metres from the building. In a nearby residential neighbourhood, the SMM noted 10 detached houses, of which most of the windows were broken. Residents told the SMM that they had been forced to take shelter in their basements for the past two days. The SMM noted shrapnel in the walls of a house on a nearby street. While in the village, at least four shells impacted approximately 350 metres from the SMM’s position.
On 13 November the SMM spoke to the chief of police and the deputy head of the Regional Police Department in Tsarychanka (68km north-west of Dnipropetrovsk) about an armed robbery, which, they said had taken place on the highway between the villages of Krasne and Brodshchyna (91km and 83km north-west of Dnipropetrovsk, respectively) on 30 October. They said two police officers and two bank security officers had been killed. They said the fact that a grenade launcher had been used in the attack suggested that a large amount of weapons may have entered the region from Donbas.
On 13 November the head of the Social Assistance Department in the Regional State Administration told the SMM in Dnipropetrovsk that of the 54,000 registered internally displaced persons (IDPs) in the region – 39,000 of whom are pensioners – only 15,343 had re-registered in accordance with Cabinet Resolution 509 in force since 1 October.
The situation remained calm in Kherson, Odessa, Chernivtsi, Ivano-Frankivsk and Lviv.
Guards at the Presidential Administration in Kyiv told the SMM that a group of approximately 50 young men rushed the gates of the building on 14 November and attempted to cut through them with an electric saw. They said the attempt had been unsuccessful, and 15 suspects had been taken into custody. The SMM did not witness the alleged attack but there is video footage online purporting to show it.