top priority for the EU both at internal and external level. In this context, we call on all parties to allow SMM monitors to carry out their duties and
to ensure free and safe access for them, including in all parts of Donetsk and Luhansk regions. Basic infrastructures and services must be restored. Les ressources du biddh doivent?tre utilis? The EU condemns the dprk's provocative launches of ballistic missiles. In this vein, we reiterate our call on the Syrian Arab Republic to take all necessary measures to provide sufficient proof that it does not retain chemical capabilities and that its chemical weapons programme is fully declared and completely and irreversibly dismantled. The following countries align themselves with this declaration: First of all,. We regret that the two co-signatories of the Minsk agreements from the so-called Donetsk and Luhansk 'People's Republics' did not attend the meeting in Minsk on 31 January despite personal invitations from the Trilateral Contract Group. In doing so, we reaffirm our commitment to place particular emphasis in all our efforts on the need for full respect for international humanitarian and human rights law. We also support the Technical Secretariats efforts to explore new ways of achieving progress in this area including through education and outreach. We urge the Secretariat to address these issues without delay. We welcome todays decision on the extension of the SMM mandate and the expansion of the ceiling to 1000 monitors / We look forward to adopting a decision on extension of the mandate, including an expansion of the ceiling to 1000 monitors. Yiitgüden, to the Permanent Council and thanks tla free gay trailers him for outlining the plans of his Office for this year. These projects are fitting under the overarching International Health Regulations that significantly contribute to global public health and security.
We also welcome the significant amount of assistance and support civil society groups in our Member States are offering as acts of solidarity. We are also concerned with cases of forced surrender, labelled as local ceasefires, imposed by the regime through starvation sieges and we are increasingly concerned with the worsening plight of all vulnerable groups, and ethnic and religious minorities, noting that Christians are increasingly targeted.
Reading the follow-up strategy proposed, we welcome the fact that it provides an integrated narrative and actions on employment policy taking into account demand- and supply-side considerations, quantity and quality of employment, and interactions among different policy areas. For instance the observation that Luhansk and Donetsk experienced regular fighting with armed groups affiliated to the so-called Luhansk Peoples Republic (LPR) and Donetsk Peoples Republic (DPR) attempting to take a number of strategic points. We cannot talk about osces efforts in Ukraine without expressing our deep concern about the abduction of SMM observers. The EU last expanded its measures on to give effect to UN Security Council Resolution 2094 (2013). Therefore, we advocate discontinuing the practice of setting IPFs.
We call on all parties to support and facilitate access for national and international humanitarian aid in accordance with international humanitarian principles. We repeat our call for the full implementation of all aspects of the Minsk Agreements by all signatories as the only way forward towards a sustainable political solution based on full respect for Ukraines independence, sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity within its internationally recognised borders. The EU also expresses its appreciation to the Executive Secretary for his written and oral reports. Therefore, at EU level, awareness raising activities and exchanges of good practice have been supported and civil society organisations transnational actions have been financed.
Through comprehensive safeguards agreements, the Agency is mandated to verify that States' declarations are correct and complete, that is to confirm that all nuclear material in those States remains in peaceful activities. We recall that the European Council underlined its commitment to reconvene at any time for further significant restrictive measures.
Mr Chairman, the EU stresses once again its support for a peaceful settlement of the crisis in Ukraine, notably the urgent need to agree on a genuine and sustainable cease-fire by all parties to create the necessary conditions for the implementation of President Poroshenko's peace. We regret that the public commemoration in Crimea of this anniversary was prohibited, as it was last year. The targeting of persons belonging to national minorities in Crimea, particularly the Crimean Tatars, is also of grave concern. We welcome the inclusion of a strong engagement of the NGOs in the revised non-paper. Our institutions have undertaken several initiatives to improve the security of supply, including a European Observatory jointly established by the European Commission and industry representatives.
Osce participating States should enable residents of conflict zones, refugees and IDPs to exercise their right to freedom of movement, in particular, to access health-care as well as for other humanitarian purposes, including reunification of families. Negotiations are the best way forward. But the majority of population in low income countries is dependent on the rural economy. Chairman, we see today some of the highest levels of forced displacement since the early 1990s. The European Union pays close attention to the degree of implementation of UPR commitments and endeavors to provide support to their implementation. .
Mr Chairman, the EU recalls its unwavering support to the sovereignty, territorial integrity, unity and independence of Ukraine, and calls upon Russia to do likewise. We regret that the expertise of non-governmental organizations in the various issues involved in fight against organized crime can be used by the untoc WGs' experts only to a very limited extent. Osce Forum for Security Co-operation Nr 754 Vienna, The European Union and its Member States took note of the report on the Benelux-led Vienna Document inspection and of statements by Ukraine giving a comprehensive picture of the politico-military aspects of the alarming security situation.
The crisis has again underlined the indivisible and comprehensive nature of security. Alignment clause to be added once statement is agreed among EU28, it is sent around to candidate and other partner countries for alignment We are approaching the end of a long and fruitful negotiation process. We also welcome the joint work on combatting trafficking in human beings. The European Union strongly believes that determined action is required to stem the flow of foreign fighters, in particular to: prevent radicalisation and extremism; share information more effectively; dissuade, detect and disrupt suspicious travel; and investigate and prosecute foreign fighters.
Transnational threats remain key challenges for all. There can be no lasting security and stability without respect for democracy, the rule of law, human rights and fundamental freedoms.
We call in particular on the Russian Federation to condemn the separatists' actions. We also want to express our full support for the efforts of Ambassador Stoudmann and commend him for his engagement, and we welcome very much his interaction with us today. We encourage the current Swiss and incoming Serbian osce Chairmanships to continue exploring possibilities to return a meaningful osce presence to Georgia. The terrorists want to divide us: our response will be more unity.
We reiterate our condemnation of the shelling of unrwa schools on more than one occasion. . For the 2015 Unified budget, some additional means were granted to the autonomous institutions, which are far below the budget they need given the growing challenges we face. These allegations should be investigated and those responsible brought to justice.
In this context, and while observing the decision-making processes of each organisation, coordinated planning and strong cooperation when developing mandates is important. The Convention constitutes the universal foundation for efforts to prevent, combat and eradicate racism and racial discrimination. We look forward to continuing our cooperation next year also as your country takes on the osce Chairmanship. The EU remains deeply concerned at mounting pressure on civil society in several osce participating States, particularly in the Russian Federation, but also Azerbaijan.
We are committed to addressing these and other issues and to engaging in a genuine dialogue with our osce partners and with civil society. In the context of the overall EU strategy for Bosnia and Herzegovina, we look forward to continuing the discussion with the international community on the reconfiguration of the international presence, in the appropriate forum, and call on the authorities in Bosnia and Herzegovina to meet. Mr Chairperson, the crisis in and around Ukraine has strongly reminded us of the significant role the Vienna Document and its broad set of csbms could play not only in confidence-building but also in early warning and risk reduction, if duly implemented. The persistent attacks of Russian-backed separatists against a number of strategically important areas under governmental control continue to bring about escalation in grave violation of the ceasefire and the Minsk Agreements.
For this, further funds for Frontex, and more assets for both operations will be needed. The EU and its Member States welcome recent efforts of the PTS to improve the staffing situation in the Secretariat and the employment terms for temporary staff members. We fully support the primary role of the UN in preventing and countering terrorism. Finalmente, extendemos nuestro agradecimiento al Embajador Lomónaco por la manera tan comprometida con la que ha dirigido este proceso y sus incesantes esfuerzos puestos. We regret that the elections could not be conducted in Crimea due to Russias illegal annexation or in more than half of the election districts in Donetsk and Luhansk Oblasts due to the actions of illegal pro-Russian armed groups.
A truly transformative agenda must include peaceful societies and freedom from violence as a key ingredient. The EU reaffirms its strong partnership with Lebanon anchored in our common values of democracy, pluralism and rule of law. Nevertheless, we will have a number of suggestions to ameliorate the text as it stands now, while some terms and parts of the proposed conclusions might still need technical clarification and require further discussion among our group. We are pleased to note that a growing number of States have decided to present a mid-term report on a voluntary basis. However, the high number of positions currently unfilled and the lengthy recruitment process are challenging the ability of the PTS to fulfil its mandated tasks.