OSCE to send monitoring mission to Ukraine

Daniel Baer, U.S Representative to the Permanent Council of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, OSCE, speaks at the Hofburg palace in Vienna, Austria, Thursday, March 20, 2014. (AP Photo/Ronald Zak)

VIENNA: OSCE member states agreed Friday to send a 100-strong monitoring mission to Ukraine, but not to Crimea, after Russia finally dropped objections, a spokeswoman said.

The Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe will "deploy a special monitoring mission of international observers to Ukraine", a resolution passed by the OSCE's 57 member states said.

The mission will initially be of 100 observers and "as necessary and according to the situation ... may expand by a total of up to 400 additional members", it said.

The aim is "to contribute throughout the country and in co-operation with ... relevant actors in the international community (such as the United Nations and the Council of Europe), to reduce tensions and fostering peace, stability and security".

Russia had been blocking at OSCE headquarters in Vienna for the past week the sending of such a mission.

A spokesman for the OSCE said that the mission would be deployed within 24 hours and has a six-month mandate which can be renewed if requested by Ukraine.





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