Home / World / Ukraine News Today Feb. 21, 2017: Yenakieve Metallurgical Plant shuts down due to coal blockade; Twenty Crimean Tatars detained in Crimea, Mejlis Head says; 10,000 Ukrainians killed, 23,000 wounded since Russian aggression started – report

Ukraine News Today Feb. 21, 2017: Yenakieve Metallurgical Plant shuts down due to coal blockade; Twenty Crimean Tatars detained in Crimea, Mejlis Head says; 10,000 Ukrainians killed, 23,000 wounded since Russian aggression started – report

Ukraine News Today: Yenakieve Metallurgical Plant shuts down due to coal blockade; Twenty Crimean Tatars detained in Crimea, Mejlis Head says; Near 10,000 Ukrainians killed, 23,000 wounded since Russian aggression started - report
Ukraine News Today Feb. 21, 2017: Yenakieve Metallurgical Plant shuts down due to coal blockade; Twenty Crimean Tatars detained in Crimea, Mejlis Head says; 10,000 Ukrainians killed, 23,000 wounded since Russian aggression started - report

Up to 20 Crimean Tatars detained in occupied Crimea on Tuesday – Mejlis Chairman

Photo: Unian.

From 10 to 20 Crimean Tatars were detained in occupied Crimea on Tuesday, as said Chairman of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar People, Member of Parliament of Ukraine Refat Chubarov says that, citing difference sources, Joinfo.com reports with reference to UNIAN.

“Just this morning, several hours ago, about 20 men were arrested in the village of Kamyanka in Crimea,” he said at a press conference.

At the same time, information is subject to verification, as another source reported about the detention of 11 people. On Tuesday morning, law-enforcers of occupied Crimea’s de-facto authorities came to Crimean Tatar activist Marlen Mustafayev, an active Facebook author, for a raid, Chubarov said.

“They arrived at his home to conduct a raid and arrest, but other people came up to check what was happening to their neighbor. They all were taken and sent to ‘an anti-extremism center.’ This is what is happening in occupied Crimea nowadays,” he said.

In his words, about 25 people are now in jail in Crimea, having different status – either detainees or convicts as they disagree with the seizure of Crimea by Russia. Earlier, leader of the Crimean Tatar People Mustafa Dzhemilev said that the Russian authorities have been altering demographics in the occupied Crimea, bringing Russians in and encouraging “voluntary emigration” of Crimean Tatars.

Donbas blockade: Yenakieve Metallurgical Plant shuts down

Production at the Makiyivka branch will be halted on 25 February 2017

Yenakiieve Metallurgical Plant and Krasnodon Ugol (Luhansk region) of the Metinvest Group, on the territories controlled by separatists, closed down operations due to continuous military activities and the railroad blockade in the area of the Anti-Terrorist Operation, 112 Ukraine TV Channel reported citing the press-service of the System Capital Management.

Since the beginning of the conflict in the region, Yenakieve Steel plant has experienced erratic supplies of iron ore. Following a blockade of the railway, shipments of raw materials and goods are not possible for now.

Yenakieve Steel has completed preparations for temporary mothballing. Production at the Makiivka branch will be halted on 25 February 2017.

In addition, Krasnodon Coal has halted coal production at all mines due to the blockade of railway transportation.

Yenakieve Steel and Krasnodon Coal are registered in territory controlled by Ukraine and pay all taxes and duties to the state budget as stipulated in the country’s legislation.

The Metinvest Group’s plants are the main employers and economic anchors in their communities. Metinvest does not intend to reduce number of employees at Yenakieve Steel (including the Makiivka branch) or Krasnodon Coal. In addition, employees of the facilities will be transferred to two-thirds remuneration.

Militants launch 74 attacks over the past day, 9 soldiers wounded

Russia’s hybrid military forces attacked Ukrainian army positions in Donbas 74 times in the past 24 hours with nine Ukrainian soldiers reported as wounded in action, according to the press service of the Anti-Terrorist Operation (ATO) Headquarters, UNIAN reports.

In the Mariupol sector, the Russian occupation forces used proscribed 120mm mortars to shell the village of Novotroyitske. Heavy machine guns and small arms were used to fire on the villages of Chermalyk, Talakivka, Hnutove, Starohnativka, Vodiane, and Shyrokyne. Additionally, enemy snipers were active in the villages of Vodiane, Pavlopil, Shyrokyne, Novotroyitske, and Hnutove.

“In the Donetsk sector, the occupiers used 120mm and 82mm mortars to shell the town of Avdiyivka, and the villages of Novoluhanske, Luhanske, Zaitseve, and Troyitske. Large-caliber machine guns and small arms were also used to fire on the town of Avdiyivka, and the villages of Pisky, Novoselivka, Verkhniotoretske, Kam’ianka, Luhanske, Zaitseve, and Zhovte. Furthermore, the enemy repeatedly used infantry fighting vehicles to attack the villages of Opytne and Luhanske. Snipers were working in Avdiyivka,” the headquarters said.

In the Luhansk sector, Russia’s hybrid military forces lobbed anti-tank missiles into the village of Novo-Oleksandrivka. Moreover, they used mortars, grenade launchers, small arms and anti-tank missile systems to fire on the village of Novozvanivka. The villages of Stanytsia Luhanska and Zhovte came under sniper fire.

It should be noted that a new truce in Donbas planned as of February 20 in keeping with last week’s agreements in Minsk failed after the occupiers attacked Ukrainian positions in the early hours on the same day.

Defense Ministry speaker for Anti-Terrorist Operation (ATO) issues Oleksandr Motuzianyk also stressed that the enemy changed tactics near Avdiyivka town.

“The occupiers have changed tactics near Avdiyivka: the intensity of mortar attacks decreased in the morning, while enemy snipers came to the forefront,” he said.

“Yesterday, a powerful barrage was reported in the village of Kam’ianka: it lasted almost seven hours,” Motuzianyk said.

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Nearly 10,000 Ukrainians killed, 23,000 wounded since Russian aggression started

More than 9,800 Ukrainians have been killed, and about 23,000 have suffered injuries since the start of Russia’s armed aggression on February 20, 2014, the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry said in a report, Jonfo.com reports with reference to Interfax-Ukraine.

Almost 1.8 million persons have been internally displaced over three years of the armed conflict in eastern Ukraine, it said.

“The invading state has seized 7.2% of the territory of Ukraine, where millions of Ukrainian citizens are living under occupation and amid endless terror. The Ukrainian government is still lacking control of a 409.7-kilometer stretch of the Ukrainian-Russian state border across which Russia constantly sends new mercenaries, weapons and ammunition to the territory of Ukraine,” the report said.

The Foreign Ministry stressed that the occupied Crimea is closed to any form of international control and monitoring, and fundamental human rights are systematically violated there, “which target in the first place Ukrainian activists and indigenous people of Crimea – Crimean Tatars.”

“Russia continues to fuel conflict in Donbas, is sending regular troops and mercenaries to the Ukraine territory beyond government control, rebels and terrorists are provided with modern weapons and military equipment,” the statement reads.