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Ministry of Defense: Russia-backed militants block SMM OSCE vehicle for seven hours

Kyiv, August 02, 2017.

Russia-backed militants in the east of Ukraine continue violating Minsk agreements. “Yesterday they had been blocking the OSCE SMM carrying video equipment for seven hours, without any explanations. The incident happened near Olenivka,” reported Ukrainian Ministry of Defense spokesman on ATO Andriy Lysenko at a press-briefing at Ukraine Crisis Media Center.

In Mariupol sector, the militants attacked the outskirts of Vodiane with Minsk-proscribed MLRS. “At the same time militants organized a provocation, exploding engineer ammunition near Staromykhailivka, with the intention to pass it off as shelling from the government-controlled territory,” added Col. Lysenko. Meanwhile, major hostilities took place in Lebedynske, with four militants’ attacks taking place between the afternoon and the sunset. Each of the attacks continued about 30 minutes. “They fused heavy machine guns and grenade launchers, as well as IFV’s mounted weapons. In addition, militants fired one mortar round,” elaborated the spokesman. Moreover, they conducted three small arms attack in Krasnohorivka, Novotroitske and Talakivka and fired three mortar rounds in Shyrokyne. In total, militants violated the ceasefire nine times in Mariupol sector, using mortars in two attacks.

Russian proxies violated the ceasefire 12 times in Luhansk sector yesterday. Popasna area was the main hotspot. Militants violated the ceasefire seven times there using grenade launchers and small arms. A sniper attack took place in Novozvanivka. “In other sections of the frontline, militants’ attacks continued 10 minutes on average. In Stanytsia Luhanska they twice opened fire from small arms. Moreover, militants discharged two mortar rounds after the midnight in Krymske and used IFV’s mounted weapons in Troitske,” reported Col. Lysenko.

In Donetsk sector, all Ukrainian positions in the sector came under militant’s fire yesterday, except for Donetsk airport area. Russia-backed militants violated the ceasefire 13 times, using Minsk-proscribed weapons in six attacks. In Horlivka area (Zaitseve, Mayorsk and Verkhnotoretske) they fired in total more than 50 mortar rounds after the sunset. In Avdiivka area militants conducted massive attacks involving small arms and mortars between 21:00 and midnight. Ukrainian servicemen returned fire.

One Ukrainian serviceman was killed in action yesterday, two more were wounded.

Report on the military developments as of August 1 is available here. Interactive data on the shelling: chronology shelling chart and the interactive map.

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