OSCE: No one has claimed responsibility for kidnappings in eastern Ukraine

Two OSCE special monitoring mission groups were abducted in eastern Ukraine in late May. The OSCE said Friday that no one has yet claimed responsibility, or issued any demands.
By JC Finley Follow @JC_Finley Contact the Author   |   June 13, 2014 at 9:16 AM

KIEV, Ukraine, June 13 (UPI) -- Two groups of OSCE monitors have not yet been released by their captors in eastern Ukraine and "no person or group has claimed responsibility for what is happening," the OSCE said Friday.

Michael Bociurkiw, the OSCE spokesman for the special monitoring mission in Ukraine, briefed reporters in Kiev on Friday. "The situation has not changed," he said. "We still were not able to establish direct contact with our two groups."

The OSCE noted in early June that no demands had been made by the captors.

The first monitoring group, comprised of four people from Estonia, Switzerland, Turkey, and Denmark, was reportedly detained by a pro-Russian separatist group identifying itself as the Sloviansk self-defense forces on May 26.

Based on Bociurkiw's comments Friday, it is unclear whether the so-called Sloviansk self-defense forces were still detaining the first group of monitors.

OSCE lost contact with the second group of four monitors and a translator on May 29 after the group was taken by armed separatists in Luhansk, a stronghold of the pro-Russian resistance.

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