Kyiv, March 5, 2015. Ukrainian Armed Forces continue withdrawing their heavy weapons from the contact line in accordance with the Minsk agreements. “Ukrainian forces started to withdraw 2S3 Akatsia artillery systems yesterday as part of the second stage of withdrawal process. “Given that pro-Russian militants adhere to the peace plan, we are ready to initiate the third stage of artillery withdrawal,” said Anatoliy Stelmakh, ATO Staff spokesman, via Skype at a briefing at Ukraine Crisis Media Center. Representatives of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission as well as Ukrainian and international media cover the withdrawal process.
On the other hand, some uncontrolled militant groups continued firing at the Ukrainian positions. The Donetsk direction remains the hotspot of the conflict. Areas around Avdiivka, Opytne and Pisky came under fire from various types of weapons. Russia-backed insurgents also used mortars and an IFV to shell Shyrokyne, which is near Mariupol. Ukrainian servicemen repelled the militant assault of the town. Insurgents also fired at Leninske, Lozove and Mayorsk. “ The enemy used multiple rocket launchers and the artillery at the south-western outskirts of Kodyma at 12:03; there was no Ukrainian Armed Forces in the area,” noted Anatoliy Stelmakh. Shchastya and Sokilnyky at the Luhansk direction were attacked too.
Overall, Russian regulars and pro-Russian militants fired from the artillery, mortars and grenade launchers 17 times, as well as 23 times from small arms and twice from anti-aircraft guns.