Donetsk, Nov 6 - DAN. Head of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission, Contact Group security subgroup coordinator Ertugrul Apakan introduced his new first deputy Mark Etherington at the talks in Minsk on Tuesday, the Donetsk People’s Republic Foreign Ministry press service reported.

“At the beginning of the security subgroup meeting, coodinator and OSCE SMM chief monitor Ertugrul Apakan introduced his new first deputy, Mark Etherington, who he said had extensive experience in monitoring armed conflicts and had been watching the Donbass ituation since the beginning, i.e. since 2014,” the Ministry said.

Earlier reports on Tuesday said that the security subgroup had started negotiations in the Belarussian capital.

Alexander Hug, the former OSCE SMM principal deputy chief monitor, stepped down on October 31, after having kept his post for the maximum term of ten years.

Mark Etherington is a former British paratrooper. In 1992-1995 he worked at the European Union observer mission in Yugoslavia. Etherington was also involved in settling conflicts in Afghanistan and South Sudan. He has been an OSCE SMM member in Ukraine since 2014.*jk