"The Observer Mission (OM) is operating at full capacity. Cross-border traffic flows remained relatively steady at both Border Crossing Points (BCPs) but the total number of border-crossings has again decreased. More people left than entered the Russian Federation (RF) at the two observed BCPs although this return movement has continued to slow down. The OM observed again a considerable number of persons in military-style clothing crossing the border in both directions, few of them apparently belonging to Cossack units. Truck convoys continued to transport coal from the Luhansk region to the RF," the report states.
This week the Observer Teams (OTs) observed 540 men and women in military-style dress who crossed the border in both directions. They crossed predominantly at Donetsk BCP and in both directions. Among them were several Cossacks. The observers did not see any of them carrying weapons. A number of wounded or sick persons left Ukraine to the RF.
At the same time, according to the mission, the average number of entries/exits has decreased significantly from 8,965 to 7,843 per day for both BCPs during this reporting period.
"The situation at both BCPs remained calm. People who cross the border regularly talk to the Observer Teams (OTs). Those who crossed the border from Ukraine reported that the situation remained largely calm in the Luhansk region. However, the number of small arms shootings and artillery fire reported to the OM has slightly increased. People from urban areas worry about heating during winter as the centralised heating system has been destroyed in many places, while inhabitants of villages rely on autonomous heating with wood or coal. Again, the OM observed numerous people bringing small generators from the RF to Ukraine. As in previous weeks, the OM observed a number of wounded or sick persons who crossed on their own or were transferred by ambulances from Ukraine to the RF. On 17 October three ambulance vans were observed at Donetsk BCP," the OSCE report says.
"At the two BCPs the OM did not observe any military movement, apart from vehicles of the RF border guard service. The OTs at both BCPs observed helicopter activity on 15 October," the observers added in the report.