KIEV, April 24 (Xinhua) -- Kiev is counting on the deployment of up to 40,000 UN peacekeeping troops in Ukraine's eastern region of Donbas, the Ukrainian Defense Ministry said Tuesday in a statement.
"If we are talking about keeping the peace, then, according to our calculations, the force can consist of between 10,000 and 25,000 troops. If we are talking about enforcing the peace, the figure can be between 35,000 and 40,000 troops," Ukrainian Defense Minister Stepan Poltorak was quoted in the statement as saying in an interview to BBC News Ukraine.
In February, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin said that the possible deployment of the UN blue helmets in Donbas will take at least six months.
The armed confrontation between Ukrainian government troops and pro-independence insurgents in Donbas region has been underway since April 2014, claiming about 10,000 lives.
On Sept. 5, 2017, Russian President Vladimir Putin said Moscow will ask the UN Security Council to send peacekeepers to patrol the contact line in eastern Ukraine.
Meanwhile, Kiev said it would agree to the deployment of a UN patrol only if the troops would be stationed across the whole area controlled by the rebels, including the Ukrainian-Russian border.