That’s how the diplomat commented on the outcome of another regular thematic meeting of the OSCE Forum for Security Co-operation held by the Ukrainian Chairmanship on the issue of the participation of private military companies in armed conflicts on the territory of the OSCE area and beyond.
Representatives of the Ministry of Defense and the Security Service of Ukraine spoke on behalf of Ukraine at the meeting. They drew the attention of the OSCE participating States to the facts of Russia's violation of international law, the temporary occupation of part of the territory of Ukraine in the Donbas and the Autonomous Republic of Crimea.
In particular, it was emphasized that Russia is actively participating in the armed conflict in eastern Ukraine not only as a full-fledged party, but by supporting cross-border terrorist activities. To this end Russia recruits, trains and transfer to the territory of Ukraine mercenaries from private military/security companies, armed "Russian Cossacks" and militants from other Russia’s paramilitary structures.
Ukraine’s representatives also exposed the covert practice of Russia using mentioned paramilitary structures in other regions of the world.
The OSCE participating States supported Ukraine's position and condemned this extremely threatening activity of Russia.
Given the growing share of private military and security companies in the security environment of the OSCE region, the importance of ensuring an appropriate level of supervision and control at the national and international levels over their activities was emphasized. This is particularly important from the point of view of international humanitarian law.
It was noted that a number of important principles regulating the activities of these companies are enshrined in the OSCE regulatory framework, primarily in the Code of Conduct on Politico-Military Aspects of Security. Delegations emphasized the special role and potential of the OSCE in facilitating the implementation of this document and enhancing assistance to participating States in overcoming the challenges associated with the activities of these companies.
The participants pointed out the need to continue working on the development of a legally binding international regulatory framework in the field of private military companies and supported the relevant efforts within the UN.