For a fuller picture of the varied work of the OSCE in Ukraine, it’s worth reading the eight related pages from their annual 2019 report. Suffice to say, a good chunk of their work involves them assisting civilians on both sides of the line.
Link to 2019 report: This covers all OSCE missions around the world, with Ukraine listed from page 70.
Compared to 2018, there was a 4% reduction in ceasefire violations (firing incidents) during 2019.
Civilian Casualties: 11 killed and 36 injured by mines, unexploded ordnance and improvised explosive devices.
OSCE monitors carried out 3,714 patrols, along with large numbers of UAV observation flights. To allow repair work to be carried out to civilian infrastructure such a gas, water & electricity, the OSCE arranged 1,141 local ceasefires.
“The (OSCE) Mission’s freedom of movement continued to be restricted, predominantly in non-government-controlled areas, particularly in parts of the southern Donetsk region and border-crossing areas near the border with the Russian Federation.”
Since Sept 2014, Russia’s had total control over 409km of Ukraine’s eastern border. Naturally, Russia’s resisted all pleas to allow full 24/7 border monitoring but has allowed a token gesture of granting OSCE monitoring at two crossings at the Russian towns of Donetsk & Gukovo. These crossings lead into the Russia-led Luhansk Oblast (province) of Eastern Ukraine.
When you consider there at least another 12 non-monitored border crossings, including several illegally reopened ones used by the Russian army and another train line, the below independent stats give us some big number insights into the likely total cross border traffic. If 38,805 soldiers have crossed back and forth into the Luhansk region via just two border crossings, then it’s not an exaggeration to assume several hundred thousand soldiers have probably passed through the other 12 crossing points. Tellingly, Russia’s not allowed 24/7 OSCE monitoring of any crossings into the much larger Russia-led Donetsk Oblast region of Ukraine.
Main Points for traffic using Donetsk & Gukovo border crossings.
Since March 2014 to Dec 31st 2019: Entering/Exiting Ukraine via Russia.
Over 20 million people.
38, 805 people wearing “military-style outfits.”
120 funeral vans and 622 ambulances.
175,445 trucks & 43,239 vans.
4,996 trains used the Gukovo rail line into Russia-led Ukraine.
94 so-called Russian humanitarian aid convoys entered Russia-led Ukraine.
Main points for 2019:
Almost 4 million people crossed the border.
1,000 people observed wearing “military-style uniforms.”
42,539 trucks, 69 ambulances & 13 funeral vans, inc one with “Cargo 200” inscribed on it. Cargo 200 is Russian military code for – transport of soldiers killed on military service.