Denis Pushilin comments on shutdown of Donetsk water filtration plant
The Donetsk water filtration plant has interrupted its work for five days, the security mechanism for plant staff should be developed in the meantime. This was reported by the Chairman of the DPR People’s Council, the Permanent Plenipotentiary Representative of the DPR in the Contact group’s negotiations in Minsk Denis Pushilin to the correspondent of the “Russia-24” TV channel during an interview.
ʺFirst of all, it should be identified where the blame lies and reflected in the records of the OSCE SMM and, second of all, what to do about it. It is necessary to undertake investigation and punish those responsible, as there was a truce, which in fact can be considered already failed. There were discussions in Minsk on how to restore the work of the Donetsk water filtration plant and how to ensure security for its staff, because they are afraid to come under shelling, get hurt and die for a reason. The security mechanism is being developed and the staff is asking for five days till the situation stabilizes. Every day counts, the provision of water for about 600 thousand people on both sides of the line of contact depends on the work of the Donetsk water filtration plant and we cannot afford to delay the ensuring of security.
Five days term occurred due to previous cases of escalation. According to the plant staff, the situation should be resolved during these days and changes in the provision of security are possible with deliberate attention of the OSCE SSM and the Contact Group. We, for our part, are working with the OSCE to reduce these deadlines so that security arrangements can now be effective, and we have found an opportunity to persuade the staff of the Donetsk water filtration plant to start working. Currently, water is being supplied by a temporary reserve scheme, but it has a limited resource.
It was recorded that “Easter truce” had been one of the worst of those that had been declared earlier. All truces that had been before did not guarantee a complete ceasefire, but they could guarantee the prevention of escalation, the reduction in shelling. Unfortunately, the “Easter truce” was violated from its first day despite the fact that had been established with the support of the “Normandy Four”.
What to do next? For our part, we insist on creating a mechanism to point out responsible parties and punishment. What is next, in case we see once again that Ukraine is to blame? Just wordless censure is not enough, it does not stop Ukraine. Ukraine makes every provocation more aggressive, more daring. We see this in a number of episodes over the last period of time: the shelling of a cemetery, where about 700 people that came to honour the dead, shelling of a bus with children with subsequent evacuation and death of soldiers, shelling of the equipment of the LPR. This is a series of dangerous undertakings on the part of Ukraine, which can lead to serious escalation.
Complete sabotage of the issue of a prisoner exchange should be added to it. Unfortunately, I cannot give a date, even approximately. Ukraine still tries to divide prisoners into categories, which is unacceptable. We reminded that conditions on the previous exchange had not been fulfilled by Ukraine and they have not been met to this day,ʺ Denis Pushilin said.
It should be noted that the situation concerning the Donetsk water filtration plant was one of the main issues at the Contact Group’s meeting, which took place on April 18. During the meeting, the representatives of the DPR and LPR proposed a number of methods that can help to ensure the safety of the Donetsk water filtration plant’s staff.