ATO Staff Spokesperson: Russia-backed militants fire at ATO forces 180 times over last four days


Kyiv, July 7, 2015. Over the last four days, Russia-backed militants fired over 180 times at Ukrainian forces along the frontline. Militants continue to violate the Minsk agreements using 120-mm mortars, 152-mm artillery, 122-mm howitzers and tanks. “The enemy was firing on their own positions more frequently, aiming to discredit Ukrainian servicemen and blame Minsk agreement violations on them. The ATO command emphasizes that Ukrainian Armed Forces are strictly complying with the Minsk agreements. They respond to militants only in cases of a direct threat to the lives of Ukrainian servicemen or Donbas civilians, using weapons allowed by the Minsk agreements,” said Lieutenant Colonel Dmytro Gutsulyak, ATO Staff spokesperson, at a press briefing via Skype at Ukraine Crisis Media Center. 

According to ATO staff, both Russian and militant forces frequently move equipment and personnel back and forth.

Ukrainian positions suffered instances of Russia-backed militant shelling starting July 7. Militants used 120-mm mortars near Novhorodske and Pavlopil, Donetsk region. At 4:10 a.m., militants operated a tank in the vicinity of Pavlopil, as well as fired small arms in the vicinity of Maryinka, Luhanske and Opytne, Donetsk region.

On July 6, from 5:50 p.m. till 7:30 p.m., two militant infantry groups of 10-15 people fired small arms near Bohdanivka in the Mariupol sector.

On July 3, at 5:10 p.m., ATO forces registered another incident involving small arms use near Shchastya, Luhansk region. Ukrainian servicemen successfully repelled all militant attacks.