The Russia-backed militants made 92 attacks on positions of the Ukrainian army in the area of the Anti-Terrorist Operation (ATO) in eastern Ukraine on Friday, Joinfo.com reports with reference to the press center of the ATO HQ.
In the Donetsk sector, militants launched 40 attacks, of which 22 times theyused heavy weapons.
Militants continue to escalate shelling near Avdiyivka. Yesterday, the enemy was shelling during 14 hours there, having released over 150 mortar shells, dozens of artillery and tank shells.
The enemy fired 122mm artillery on the village of Verkhniotoretske. Militants also fired mortars of various calibers on Avdiyivka town and the villages of Troitske, Pisky, Luhanske, Dacha, Zaitseve, Kam’ianka, Novoselivka and Verkhniotoretske. They also fired rocket-propelled grenades in the town of Avdiyivka and the villages of Dacha, Maiorsk, Zaitseve, Pisky and Luhanske. Besides, militants used tanks to fire on Pisky and Kam’ianka, The invaders also used infantry fighting vehicles to fire on the village of Luhanske.
In the Mariupol sector, the militants fired 122mm artillery systems on the villages of Pavlopil and Hnutove. Tey also fired 120mm mortars on the town of Krasnohorivka, villages of Hnutove and Shyrokyne. The village of Vodiane came under fire from 82mm mortars. The militants also fired small arms and rocket-propelled grenades in the villages of Novotroitske, Pavlopil, Vodiane, Hnutove and Shyrokyne. They shelled Shyrokyne and Pavlopil with infantry fighting vehicles.
In total, militants launched 40 attacks, of which 7 times – using heavy weapons. They released 70 mortar shells and over 30 artillery shells.
In the Luhansk sector, militants made 11 attacks on Ukrainian troops’ positions in Popasna district, of which 4 times they used heavy weapons. They released over 20 mortar shells there.
Over the past 24 hours, 16 Ukrainian soldiers were wounded, no one was killed.
Members of the Special Monitoring Mission in Ukraine of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE SMM) have got under militant fire near non-government-controlled Yasynuvata, Donetsk region, according to the mission report, Joinfo.com reports.
Here is the OSCE SMM report:
“At 13:27 on 24 February 2017, the SMM heard a burst of small-arms fire (three to five shots) at close range while preparing to launch a mini unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) from the north-western edge of non-government-controlled Yasynuvata (16km north-east of Donetsk), about 130m south-east of the M-04 highway. (The SMM patrol was attempting to launch the UAV to monitor the reported shelling of the Donetsk water filtration station.) The SMM patrol members took cover behind one of their vehicles and saw four men in military-style camouflage clothing carrying AK-variant automatic assault rifles about 30m to the south. The men shouted “Stand still!” in Russian and then approached, with two of the men kneeling and aiming their weapons at the SMM while the two others advanced in short movements. One of them seized the mini-UAV from the ground. The SMM members loudly identified themselves as OSCE in Russian and English. The four men withdrew with the mini-UAV. When 15-20m away, one of them fired a burst of small-arms fire (three to five shots) that impacted on the snow about five metres from the SMM vehicle, behind which the patrol was taking cover. The patrol got into their vehicles and left the scene.”
“Earlier in the day, around 12:15, two men carrying AK-47s and wearing military-style camouflage clothing typical of “DPR” members engaged in conversation with an SMM patrol member in the centre of non-government-controlled Pikuzy (formerly Kominternove, 23km north-east of Mariupol). One of them, apparently intending to demonstrate that his firearm was functional, pointed the weapon into the air and fired a round. The SMM left the area,” the mission reported.
The monitors also said that no SMM members were hurt or vehicles damaged, and they informed the Joint Centre for Control and Co-ordination about both incidents and asked it to assist in recovery of the UAV.
The Ukrainian MP Nadia Savchenko has published a list of Ukrainian prisoners she visited in Donetsk prisons, Joinfo.com reports with reference to Interfax-Ukraine.
There are 34 surnames in the list that Savchenko posted on her account in Facebook.
“I was able to visit our captives. The guys feel aright. The conditions are ordinary, the prison ones. They said that the attitude towards them is normal. There are three of them in each cell, they are allowed to have an hour of yard time and watch television, the majority of channels are the Russian ones, but the Ukrainian 1+1 TV channel is available. They believe they will be released soon and don’t lose hope! Let us fight for our brothers,” she said.
As reported, on February 24, Savchenko and Volodymyr Ruban, head of the Officer Corps center for the release of prisoners of war, arrived in Donetsk and then to a penal colony in Makiyivka, where Ukrainian prisoners of war are being held.
In that regard, the Ukrainian Security Service (SBU) said it intended to have a conversation with Savchenko about her visit to prisoners of war in Donetsk and verify information provided by deputy Tetyana Rychkova that Savchenko had “incited serving Ukrainian military personnel to overthrow the authorities.”
“We don’t monitor people’s deputies purposefully, but having obtained information from deputy Rychkova, we will certainly verify this information, even without waiting for Ms. Rychkova’s official request,” head of the SBU chief’s administration Oleksandr Tkachuk told Interfax-Ukraine.
“These accusations are too serious to ignore them,” he said.
Earlier, Rychkova, a deputy from the Petro Poroshenko Bloc faction, said that Savchenko had “incited servicemen to overthrow the authorities in Ukraine” and called on the Prosecutor General’s Office and the SBU to investigate her actions.
Deputy Prime Minister of Ukraine for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration Ivanna Klympush-Tsintsadze has said that over the three years of the Russian occupation of the Crimean peninsula, 17 people have gone missing, 12 have been killed and 39 have become political prisoners, Joinfo.com reportswith reference to Interfax-Ukraine.
“As of today, 17 people are recorded as missing, 12 dead, 39 as political prisoners, ten of them have already been convicted. These are people who suffered for their political and ideological beliefs, because of belonging to the Crimean Tatar people, because of their habit of free speech,” she said during the international forum “Crimea under Occupation: Implications for Ukraine and the World” in Kyiv on Saturday.
According to Klympush-Tsintsadze, human rights violations in Crimea should unite the international community to produce an urgent joint response.
“In these past three years, Crimea has actually reached almost complete destruction of personal rights and freedoms of people, and it has gone a cruel way from oppression to greater oppression. At present, Crimea can serve as a complete guide of violations and harassment of human rights and freedoms,” the deputy prime minister said.