Russia's proposal to deploy an UN-mandated force on the dividing line between Kiev's forces and Moscow-backed separatists is not acceptable, Nerijus Aleksiejunas, the Lithuanian president's foreign policy advisor, said on Tuesday.
© Sputnik / Scanpix

"What is unacceptable is that such a mission would operate along the demarcation line or only in some areas in eastern Ukraine. The key goal should for a UN mission, if it were set up, to operate on the border between Russia and Ukraine," he told BNS.

According to President Dalia Grybauskaite's advisor, the deployment of a UN force on the Ukraine-Russia border would help resolve the conflict and monitor whether Russian troops enter Ukraine.

Setting up a mission on the so-called "contact line" would be a step toward freezing the conflict, he said.

"We don't want to see a situation like that in other regions where a conflict is frozen and the status quo situation is legitimized and then a pocket of instability is created, like in Transnistria or in Nagorno-Karabakh," the advisor said.

Russian President Vladimir Putin proposed in early September that an international force should operate along the "contact line" and be only deployed once heavy weaponry had been withdrawn. According to him, such a UN mission would help protect OSCE monitors present in the conflict zone.

Putin said somewhat later that Russia was ready to take into account peacekeepers' right to protect the OSCE mission not only along the contact line, but in other territories as well.

Kiev says that a peacekeeping mission in eastern Ukraine should ensure the security of the Ukraine-Russia border and that there should be no Russians on the mission.

Some 600 international OSCE observers are currently monitoring the situation in eastern Ukraine , but their presence has failed to stop the conflict, which has killed 10,000 people since 2014.

BNS
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