Fighting increases after top Russian officials meet with the so-called DPR – Colonel Andriy Lysenko

Militants are actively firing mortars and artillery near Horlivka and Donetsk airport. The violence in the Donetsk region has increased since top officials from Russia’s and other agencies meet with separatists’ leaders.

Kyiv, June 14, 2016. The most intense hostilities took place in the vicinity of Donetsk airport and Horlivka agglomerate. “Russia-backed militant groups were shooting from 82-mm and 120-mm mortar launchers, various grenade launchers and small arms near Avdiivka and Opytne. Moreover, militants shot at ATO forces’ positions near Putylivska coal mine using 152-mm artillery,” informed the spokesman of the Presidential Administration on ATO related issues Colonel Andriy Lysenko at a press briefing at Ukraine Crisis Media Center. Militants’ artillery attacks took place near Kaminanka, and mortar launchers were used near Krasnohorivka, Leninske and Novhorodske. “In total, the enemy launched 134 mortar shells and 25 artillery missiles in this area,” said Col. Lysenko.


Militants also shot from an anti-aircraft mount, grenade launchers and small arms in Novhorodske. They also used grenade launchers and small arms in Novoselivka Druha. One provocation was registered near Luhanske at the Svitlodarsk bulge.

Russia-backed militant groups shot three times from mortar launchers near Mariinka in the Mariupol sector. A local woman was wounded in shelling. Militants also used mortar launchers in the southern area of Krasnohorivka and in the vicinity of Talakivka. “Occupants launched the total of 34 mortar shells,” said the spokesman. In addition to mortar launchers, militants used small arms and grenade launchers. Moreover, they shot from an armored personnel carrier near Talakivka. Sporadic provocations involving the use of small arms and grenade launchers took place near Pavlopol and Slavne. Militants used small arms twice near Bohuslavske in the Luhansk sector. “Another armed provocation involving the use of grenade launchers took place near Novozvanivka. Moreover, a hostile sniper was active here,” said Col. Lysenko.

“Ukrainian Armed Forces incurred no losses in combat over the past 24 hours, six troops were wounded. It happened in the vicinity of Avdiivka and Mariinka,” informed the spokesman. Militants lost four people killed and three wounded yesterday. These fighters were from different subdivisions of self-proclaimed “Donetsk People’s Republic” (DPR). They acted as members of a subversive reconnaissance groups in the Mariupol sector, shelling ATO troops in the Avdiivka industrial area from mortar launchers.

According to the Chief Intelligence Directorate of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, militants are preparing an operation aimed at seizing advantageous positions from ATO troops near Avdiivka, Mariinka and Novotroitske. A meeting of leaders of so-called “DPR,” key personnel of the FSB and Russian Federal Service of the National Guard took place in Donetsk on June 12.
“A decision was made during this council to continue further buildup of intelligence in Avdiivka industrial area, near Donetsk airport, Krasnohorivka, Mariinka and Novotroitske,” said the spokesman. “Moreover, they decided to strengthen the militants’ task team near Mariinka by additional subdivision of so-called “100th separate motorized rifle brigade” located in Donetsk. A motorized rifle unit and firing platoon were moved from Donetsk to Oleksandrivka, and rocket artillery battery of Grad multiple rocket launcher systems was moved from Makiivka to Yasynuvata. According to intelligence, the commander of intelligence troops and all the platoon commanders of so-called “7th separate motorized rifle brigade” submitted requests for release in order to return to Russia.

Col. Lysenko also noted that border guards found a 122-mm artillery missile, three rocket-propelled grenades, missiles for mounted, and under-barrel grenade launchers in Luhansk region not far from Zolote checkpoint.  Moreover, police officers seized three grenade launchers, 10 grenades and nearly half a kilogram of explosives from a minibus at a checkpoint in Kostiantynivka. The spokesman added that Ukrainian military engineers rendered almost 800 items of ordnance safe in the last week.

Col. Lysenko recalled that two years ago a tragedy at Luhansk airport took place. Militants downed a Ukrainian military aircraft on its way in to land. There were 40 troops of the 25th Separate Airborne Special Forces Brigade and nine crew members onboard, all of them died.