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In Ukraine, US Says Supports Mutual Ceasefire Verified by OSCE, Int'l Probe of MH17

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, July 27 -- After US Secretary of State John Kerry called his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov on July 27, the US State Department issued two read-outs, or a readout in two stages.

  The second, an "additional point" by a Senior State Department Official, was that Kerry "underlined our support for a mutual cease fire verified by the OSCE and reaffirmed our strong support for the international investigation to show the facts of MH17."

   While the second part of the sentence includes the word "international" that Russia pushed for in the Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 investigation resolution adopted on July 21, the first part of the sentence caused more surprise: a ceasefire?

  While the second read-out didn't say so, did this mean only in the area around the site where MH17 went down? We'll have more on this as it develops.

  The first (part of the) readout, by a Senior State Department Official, was that

"During a phone call this afternoon, Secretary Kerry urged Foreign Minister Lavrov to stop the flow of heavy weapons and rocket and artillery fire from Russia into Ukraine, and to begin to contribute to deescalating the conflict.  He did not accept Foreign Minister Lavrovís denial that heavy weapons from Russia were contributing to the conflict.

"Secretary Kerry provided an update on his meetings in the Middle East and Paris this past week and the ongoing efforts to achieve a ceasefire."

 Back on July 25 at the UN  Inner City Press asked UN deputy spokesperson Farhan Haq:

Inner City Press: Is there any UN involvement in trying to bring about this deployment? Does the Secretary-General believe that such a deployment would go through the Security Council? Should go through the Security Council? Should the consent of the separatists be sought to avoid a conflict? Whatís the UNís thinking on this deployment of armed individuals into a conflict zone?

Deputy Spokesman Haq: I believe that this is an issue that may come up, among the members of the Security Council in the coming days, so Iíll leave it in their hands.

  Five hours later Security Council member Mark Lyall Grant of the UK said

ďIts early days, the negotiations between The Netherlands and the Ukrainian government are continuing, as I understand it, in Kyiv. The Australians are obviously involved as well in terms of negotiating the bilateral agreement. When that happens, I think it is quite likely that the Dutch government may want to inform the Security Council of that agreement, and I think it also quite likely that the Security Council will want to take note of that agreement, very possibly in a resolution. I wouldn't expect that to be controversial, and that could happen very quickly after agreements have been reached in Kyiv.Ē 

  Meanwhile at the International Monetary Fund's July 24 embargoed briefing, Inner City Press asked IMF  Deputy Spokesperson William Murray:

Inner City Press: "On Ukraine, what is the IMF's estimate or thoughts on the impact of the downing in Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 in Eastern Ukraine, and its impact, if any, on the IMF's program?

MR. MURRAY: You know, we're concerned about conflict in the region and a statement we issued the other day addresses that issue.

 But what about MH17 and its aftermath? The IMF did substantively answer Inner City Press' Gaza and Israel question, here.  Watch this site.


 

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