Defense Ministry: Militants drastically increase number of attacks in Mariupol sector

Militants shell Ukrainian positions at the Svitlodarsk bulge and in Avdiivka industrial area in Luhansk sector. 

Russia-backed militants drastically increased the number of attacks at Ukrainian positions using cannons and mortar launchers in the Mariupol sector in comparison with the previous days, said the spokesman of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine on ATO related issues Colonel Oleksandr Motuzyanyk at a press briefing at Ukraine Crisis Media Center. “Traditionally, main hostilities continue in the Mariinka area and in Pavlopil-Shyrokyne frontline area. The number of missiles launched at our positions reaches dozens. Ukrainian troops respond with fire. Two volunteers were injured in Mariinka at Ukrainian Armed Forces positions,” said the spokesman. In total, militants made 43 attacks in the Mariupol sector yesterday, and more than half of them involved use of heavy armor.


In the Luhansk sector hostilities took place in Stanytsia Luhanska area, Krymske and near Popasna yesterday. Col. Motuzyanyk informed that militants used mortar launchers and cannons on large scale in Krymske, Novozvanivka and Troitske. In total, militants conducted 15 attacks there, and six of them involved use of heavy arms. In the Donetsk sector a Ukrainian rear area, Tonenke village near Avdiivka, came under hostile fire first time in a long time. Russia-backed militants launched 17 missiles from 122-mm cannons, killing a civilian. “Moreover, Russian proxies repeatedly shelled our positions at the Svitlodarsk bulge and in Avdiivka industrial area in the afternoon, using mortar launchers. They launched over 160 shells. Ukrainian troops responded with fire in order to stop these aggressive actions,” said the spokesman. At the same time, the armistice held near Horlivka yesterday. In total, militants conducted six attacks in the last 24 hours in the Donetsk sector, using heavy armor.

According to Col. Motuzyanyk, Ukrainian Armed Forces incurred no losses in combat yesterday, yet four servicemen were wounded.

Col. Motuzyanyk informed that yesterday police detained a militant from a Russia-backed armed formation “Vostok” in Druzhkivka. The formation participated in a battle for Savur-Mohyla and Debaltseve. Another militant from “Oplot” formation with nom de guerre “Joe” was sentenced to three years of prison by an appellate court of Donetsk region. Officers of the Security Service of Ukraine served a head of an “election committee” for separatist referendum 2014 with charges in Kramatorsk. Moreover, Kramatorsk police found a weapons cache containing over three thousand cartridges of various calibers yesterday. The Security Service of Ukraine stopped distribution of Russian content as they detained an “entrepreneur” in Bakhmut. The man was installing equipment for satellite TV-broadcasting, giving access to Russian TV-channels.