Kyiv, February 18, 2016. Militants violated the ceasefire in the Luhansk sector in the TO zone, shooting from small arms for an hour near Tryokhizbenka. In the Donetsk sector combat activity continues north of Horlivka and on the west outskirts of Donetsk. Russia-backed militant groups episodically used heavy armor – mortar launchers and 122-mm artillery. Moreover, militant snipers were active along the entire frontline, said Colonel Oleksandr Motuzyanyk, spokesman of Presidential Administration on ATO-related issues at a press briefing at Ukraine Crisis Media Center.
“Intense mortar shelling at positions of the ATO troops’ near Krasnohorivka and Mariinka continued in the Mariupol sector. ‘Sniping war’ continued on the same positions. Another mortar shelling took place southwards, near Chermalyk village,” added Col. Motuzyanyk.
Three flights of militants’ unmanned aerial vehicles were observed in the ATO zone, two of them in the Mariupol sector and one near Krasna Talakivka village in Luhansk region. The spokesman informed that one Ukrainian serviceman died in combat in the past 24 hours and three other troops were wounded.
According to the Chief Intelligence Directorate of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, the “occupational contingent” of the Armed Forces of the Russia Federation in Donbas increases in number. Two Russian squadrons came to Antratsyt town, an echelon carrying 360 tons of combustible and lubrication materials arrived at the area near Mykhailivka village in Luhansk region, and an echelon with food and spare parts for tanks arrived at Khartsyzk town. Ukrainian military reconnaissance receives information regarding new losses incurred by the Russian Armed Forces in Donbas. “Five troops of Russian 331th parachute regimen of the 98th airborne division died on February 15-16 at the Svitlodarsk bulge and two more were wounded,” explained Col. Motuzyanyk.