Amid the strongest since February this year, the deterioration in the ATO, Russia has taken a new step – withdrew their troops from the composition of the SCCC. According to Ukrainian representatives in Minsk, this move deprives the Kremlin of the ability to negotiate a Christmas truce and pushing Ukraine to negotiate with terrorists. More details in explaining the material

WHERE TO START. The joint center for control and coordination of ceasefire and stabilization of the demarcation line (SCCC) is a group for monitoring the observance of the Minsk agreements in the ATO, which was created in September 2014. The composition of this group consisted of 128 Ukrainian and Russian officers. Eight sub-groups worked on controlled and uncontrolled Ukraine territories. The work of the SCCC is not a prerequisite of the Minsk agreements, but the task of the center – fixing and termination of violations of silence regime. The Russian side could directly intervene and influence militant groups DPR and LPR. For example, one of the leaders of the Russian side of the JCCC, Colonel-General Alexander lentsov, as stated in the headquarters of ATO and the General staff, not only lied to discredit APU and directly supervised the fighters in the Donbass. The Ukrainian side of the JCCC was one of the main sources of information about what is happening in the hot spots of Donbass, passing the data through the press center of staff ATO. Komunicera with the Russian side, they also played a diplomatic role for the ceasefire in specific localities (for example, for the repair of power lines).

HOW IT DEVELOPED. Today, Russia officially withdrew their officers from the SCCC. Together with the Russian military controlled by the militants areas of Donbass left and representatives of the Ukrainian side of the JCCC.

On the eve of the Russian foreign Ministry came up with the “why” of this decision: that the center “has faced serious difficulties because of the position of the Ukrainian authorities” and the Russians were not allowed to work, creating “a tense moral-psychological situation.” The Ukrainian foreign Ministry actions of the Kremlin called a provocation and undermine the Minsk agreements. Russia wants “to absolve themselves of any liability, as the parties to the conflict, the consequences of the armed aggression against our country,” according to the foreign Ministry of Ukraine.

WHAT WILL HAPPEN NEXT. On December 20 planned next and last in this year’s talks in Minsk. Tomorrow there will try to negotiate a cease-fire for the duration of new year’s holidays. But, as noted by the representative of Ukraine in the subgroup of “Minsk” security Yevhen Marchuk, now, without the Russian side of the JCCC, to achieve a real truce would be nearly impossible. Previously, according to Marchuk, the existed technology of the ceasefire, which the Russians played an important role. “Unlike the OSCE SMM patrol, they are empowered and can quickly intervene to stop the violation of silence regime”, – he wrote in his Facebook.

On the background of aggravation of the situation in the ATO and possible disruption of the exchange of prisoners the termination of the SCCC looks like a blackmail: the Kremlin is trying to force Ukraine to start negotiations with the militants. Although the Ukrainian side of the JCCC will continue to work in conjunction with the SMM, the OSCE, the opinion of the Russian side, most likely, will lead to the elimination of this structure.

See also: GPU: Shelling Novoluganskogo is the aggression of the Russian Federation

The theme of the day. Why did the Kremlin withdrew its military from SCCC 20.12.2017

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