Russia-backed militants violated the ceasefire 21 times in the combat zone yesterday. “Russian proxies attacked Ukrainian troops’ positions and a peaceful town with 152-mm artillery and mortars of various calibers; in addition, a five-hour combat engagement took place near Luhanske. Ukrainian troops incurred no losses in it,” said Ukrainian Ministry of Defense spokesman on ATO Colonel Oleksandr Motuzyanyk at a press-briefing at Ukraine Crisis Media Center.
In Luhansk sector, Russian proxies made 17 precision attacks. At about midnight Ukrainian troops spotted a subversive militant group of eight. “A group of militants secretly advanced along the Debaltseve-Svitlodarsk road under the covering fire of heavy machine guns and automatic grenade launchers AGS-17. Ukrainian troops repelled the attack. As it became later known, the militants were part of the so-called 7th motor-rifle brigade within the 2nd army corps of the combined Russian-militant troops. Ukrainian troops returned fire using small arms forcing the enemy to step back,” said Colonel Motuzyanyk. One Russia-backed militant was killed in action and two more were wounded in action.
Russian proxies used 152-mm artillery near Vrubivka in Popasna area, they fired 10 shells upon the Ukrainian positions and hit the residential part of the town. In addition, Russia-backed militants fired over twenty 120-mm mortar rounds near Prychepylivka and Krymske and mortared Ukrainian positions near Luhanske with 82-mm and 120-mm mortars. “Near Novoluhanske the enemy used IFV mounted weapons and anti-aircraft twin-barreled cannon ZU-23-2. Moreover, hostile attacks involving grenade launchers and small arms were recorded in Luhanske, Zhovte, Zaitseve, and Troitske areas,” Colonel Motuzyanyk said. Ukrainian troops returned fire several times using weapons not proscribed under the Minsk agreements.
In Donetsk sector, Russia-backed militant groups violated the ceasefire four times. At around 9:30 militants attacked southern outskirts of Vodiane with 30-mm automatic grenade launchers. Russian proxies conducted three long-lasting attacks near Pisky using IFV mounted weapons, grenade launchers, machine guns, and 82-mm mortars. “Hostile mortar fire of the same caliber was also recorded near Kamianka. Ukrainian troops returned fire responding to most of the attacks with grenade launchers and small arms,” the ATO spokesman added.
Three Ukrainian troops were wounded in action yesterday: one serviceman was wounded near Vodiane, two more near Luhanske and Pisky.