Oleksandr Motuzyanyk: Russia-backed militants use heavy weapons in Luhansk sector for the first time in the past days



Kyiv, September 3, 2015. The situation remained tense in the Luhansk sector as Ukraine’s mobile group designated to counter smuggling across government- and militant-controlled areas was ambushed between Shchastya and Slovyanoserbsk resulting in death of a volunteer and a State Fiscal Service officer. Six Ukrainian troops were injured. Ukrainian forces did not incur any casualties in other sectors over the last 24 hours. “Militants also used heavy armament the first time in four days, firing at Ukrainian positions near Novotoshkivske, Bakhmutivska road, from 120 mm mortars,” said Colonel Oleksandr Motuzyanyk, spokesperson of the Administration of the President of Ukraine on ATO-related issues, at a press briefing at Ukraine Crisis Media Center.  Provocations instigated by militants took place near Shchastya and Krymske where they fired from small arms. The ceasefire held yesterday in Popasna district as well as near Svitlodarsk, Horlivka and at the front line between Dzerzhynsk and Yasynuvata.


“Two militant attacks were observed near Donetsk airport – north of Avdiivka and near Spartak. Militants used small arms and a grenade launcher,” said Col. Motuzyanyk. The situation slightly escalated near Krasnohorivka and Maryinka where pro-Russian insurgents fired at Ukrainian troops four times from small arms between 6 p.m. and 10 p.m. “The ceasefire holds south from Donetsk and in the entire Mariupol sector,” said the ATO spokesperson.

Ukraine’s Security Service revealed a military enlistment officer in Mariupol who was supplying Russia-backed militants with information on location and displacement routes of Ukrainian military hardware and personnel. “A former Ukrainian civil servant was his communication agent from militants’ side,” said Col. Motuzyanyk.

Law enforcement found an arms cache on the outskirts of Volodarke in Donetsk region. Three grenade launchers, TNT blocks with total weight of 800 grams, seven grenades and over 2,500 cartridges of various calibers. The owner’s identity is being proven. “Law enforcement jointly with military troops prevented another attempt of goods smuggling through the frontline. A truck carrying 270 boxes of tobacco products to the total sum of almost two million hryvnia,” said Col. Motuzyanyk.