OSCE officials leave Gukovo checkpoint due to explosion threat

The OSCE mission officials who monitored the Gukovo checkpoint in the Rostov region left it on Monday due to military actions on the territory of Ukraine, Vasily Malayev, the head of the press service for the Russian Federal Security Service's Border Guard Department for the Rostov region, told Interfax on Monday.

The OSCE mission officials who monitored the Gukovo checkpoint in the Rostov region left it on Monday due to military actions on the territory of Ukraine, Vasily Malayev, the head of the press service for the Russian Federal Security Service's Border Guard Department for the Rostov region, told Interfax on Monday.

"The OSCE officials have left the border checkpoint due to the shooting and explosions of munitions, whose fragments are reaching the Russian territory from time to time," Malayev said.

The border guards and the customs officers remain at their workplaces, he said.

The first group of OSCE officials, composed of four observers and thee staff members, have begun monitoring the checkpoints Gukovo and Donetsk on July 30. Two groups, each composed of two people (citizens of Hungary, Kyrgyzstan and Moldova) in armored vehicles with OSCE symbols, are locate at the checkpoint.

The decision on their deployment was made by the OSCE on July 24 to fulfill the Berlin Declaration signed by the foreign ministers of Germany, Russia, France and Ukraine on July 2. It was made unanimously despite the attempts made by the delegations of Ukraine, the U.S. and Canada to disrupt it.

The mission is stationed in Kamensk-Shakhtinsky.

In the past week, Russian border guards and customs officers reported at least five attacks on the Russian territory in the area of the Gukovo checkpoint. The infrastructure of the checkpoint was damaged in the attacks.

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