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Ministry of Defense: 47 attacks in the last 24 hours, most of them in Luhanske and Shyrokyne

Ministry of Defense: 47 attacks in the last 24 hours, most of them in Luhanske and Shyrokyne
Київ, December 20, 2016.

Situation deteriorates, the adversary makes another attempt to seize Ukrainian positions, “hot” spots – Adviivka industrial zone, Svitlodarsk vicinity.

The situation has escalated. Over December 19 Russia-backed militant groups violated the ceasefire 47 times, which was twice as many, compared to 24 attacks on December 18. “The vicinity of the Svitlodarsk bulge remains the center of hostilities, with flashpoint near Luhanske settlement. Following the calm night, adversaries resumed attacks after 9 a.m., making intense mortar attack which lasted over two hours. Enemy violated the armistice repeatedly after a brief pause, starting in the afternoon. Russian proxies were traditionally using mortar launchers and shelled Ukrainian troops from artillery after the sunset,” informed the spokesman of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine on ATO related issues Colonel Oleksandr Motuzyanyk at a press briefing at Ukraine Crisis Media Center.

Col. Motuzyanyk informed that militants carried out mortar attack today at 10:30 a.m. and attacked Ukrainian positions using three assault groups consisting of 3-5 people each. “Ukrainian troops defeated the attack and the enemy had to retreat. Out troops incurred no losses,” added the spokesman.

In addition to the Svitlodarsk bulge, militants were shelling Ukrainian positions in Avdiivka industrial area for five hours using grenade launchers and small arms. Moreover, Russia-backed militants violated the ceasefire near Zaitseve and Putylivska coal mine position (“Butivka-Donetska coal mine”). In total, militants conducted nine attacks in the Donetsk sector, using heavy arms in most of them.

Russia-backed militants made 27 attacks in the Mariupol sector yesterday, mostly in Pavlopil-Shyrokyne area. “More than half of the attacks were registered in Shyrokyne where militant groups were shooting from mortars and opened fire from artillery and armored weapons, including a tank,” said the spokesman. Militants also opened fire from mortar launchers near Novovtroitske and shot from small arms near Starohnativka.

Militants violated the armistice 11 times in the Luhansk sector, mostly in the vicinity of Stanytsia Luhanska. “Enemy used no heavy arms in this area, but sniping attacks were frequent,” said Col. Motuzyanyk. Moreover, Russia-backed militant groups opened fire in Lobacheve, Zhovte, in the vicinity of Popasna and in Krymske, where militants used mortars twice.

“One Ukrainian serviceman died in combat yesterday, and 10 were wounded. Eight troops more sustained blast injury as a result of active hostilities at the Svitlodarsk bulge,” informed Col. Motuzyanyk.

Report on the military developments as of December 19 is available here. Interactive data on the shelling: chronology shelling chart and the interactive map.

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