The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) has extended its monitoring mission in Ukraine for another year, until the end of March 2017.
German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, whose country currently chairs the OSCE, said the cease-fire in eastern Ukraine is "still fragile" and complained that OSCE monitors still do "not have full access to the entire area of conflict."
“Nearly 700 monitors from 46 OSCE participating states work day by day to give us objective data on compliance with the cease-fire and on the withdrawal of weapons in eastern Ukraine," Steinmeier said.
He called on all sides in the conflict to adhere to the terms of the Minsk peace agreement, "to strictly adhere to the cease-fire" and to give the mission unhindered access to all areas, "without exception."
More than 9,000 people have died since the conflict began in April 2014.