ATO Staff spokesman: Russia-backed militants fired upon the positions of Ukrainian forces 87 times using heavy weapons in August 4-6


Kyiv, August 7, 2015. Between August 3rd and August 6th Russia-backed militants fired upon the positions of Ukrainian forces 252 times, 87 times using arms with caliber exceeding 100 mm, stated Lieutenant Colonel Anatoliy Stelmakh, ATO Staff spokesman, at a press briefing via Skype at Ukraine Crisis Media Center.

“During the night Russian-backed militants fired upon Avdiivka twice with 122-mm artillery, attacked Ukrainian forces four times in Opytne and three times in Avdiivka using tanks. In addition, Ukrainian positions in the areas of Pisky came under fire seven times from 120-mm mortars and 122-mm artillery. In the direction of Artemivsk, the positions of Ukrainian military near Sanzharivka and Zolote came under fire from 120-mm mortars. Russia-backed militants shelled Troyitske from Grad multiple rocket launchers,” noted the ATO Staff spokesman.

According to Lt. Col. Stelmakh, discipline has worsened amongst the ranks of Russia-backed militants, provoking incidents with the participation of insurgents and civil population.  “On July 31 in Yuvileine, Luhansk region, a group of drunk militants on an armored fighting vehicle destroyed two civilian cars and started shooting. The incident is being investigated by a special 7-member commission, which recently arrived to Luhansk from Russia. However, the Russian government is considering the option of completely replacing the insurgents with Russian soldiers, as the attempts to reassert discipline are not likely to be successful,” elaborated the ATO Staff spokesman.

Officers of Public civil-military cooperation of the Ukrainian Armed Forces and Red Cross representatives delivered 2,000 asbestos-cement boards, 45 cubic meters of wood and other construction supplies to Luhanske, Donetsk region. “These materials will be used to rebuild the local hospital, school and kindergarten that have been damaged in military action,” explained Lt. Col. Stelmakh.