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Ceasefire in Ukraine is just a political ploy

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Heavily wounded and wearing a white helmet, Ukrainian marine Yaroslav Zhuravel crawls through no man's land back towards the Ukrainian positions. Only a few hundred meters separate him from his own regiment and from the Russian-backed separatists on the other side.

At least that's the story told by drone footage released by the Ukrainian army. Zhuravel was shot while on a mission to recover the body of one of his comrades, a mission the Ukrainian army claims was agreed with the pro-Russian separatist side.

Just hours later Ukrainian paramedic Mykola Ilyin lost his life trying to rescue Zhuravel. How long Zhuravel survived before succumbing to his injuries is still not known.

Now, two weeks later, Zhuravel's comrades, as well as all other combatants along the 400-kilometer-long front line separating Ukrainian government troops from Russian-backed separatists, are suddenly supposed to stop shooting.

The very same commanders who proved unable to negotiate workable security guarantees to recover a body from no man's land are now supposed to ensure that their troops do not return fire, even if provoked. Even if their positions are so close to their opponent's trenches that they can watch each other having lunch through binoculars.

DW's Ukraine correspondent Nick Connnolly

The latest ceasefire is a breakthrough that could reinvigorate the stalled Minsk peace process and bring an........

© Deutsche Welle