The Mission reports situation deteriorated compared to the previous week, mostly explosions recorded nearby Svitlodarsk and in the triangle – Yasynuvata-Avdiivka-Donetsk airport.
Over the week ceasefire violations have increased by 75 percent compared with the last week. The Mission observed an increase in the use of proscribed weapons. This was informed by Alexander Hug, First Deputy Chief Monitor of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine, during a briefing at Ukraine Crisis Media Center. “The SMM has recorded 985 explosions caused by mines, tanks and multiple rocket launchers. Last week only 242 explosions have been recorded. Most of the explosions – 843 – have been recorded south and southeast of Svitlodarsk over the weekend,” noted Mr. Hug.
According to him, on December 18, 700 explosions have been recorded during 6 hours in Svitlodarsk, 680 of them are assessed as 122 mm artillery fire, and 20 – as tank fire. On December 17, the monitors recorded 12 barrages of multiple launch rocket systems in Debaltseve, and on December 18, – 43 barrages and 1900 undetermined explosions. Other ceasefire violations were observed in the triangle – Yasynuvata-Avdiivka-Donetsk airport. “On December 16, from the center of Donetsk the monitors heard 504 explosions at a distance of 6-10 kilometers to the northwest,” specified Alexander Hug. The ceasefire was also violated on the north-eastern outskirts of Mariupol, west of Horlivka and west and northwest of Donetsk.
All in all, the monitors recorded more than 300 thousand ceasefire violations over the year. “In many of these cases the weapon prohibited by Minsk agreements was used: artillery, mortars, tanks and multiple launch rocket systems,” noted Mr. Hug. According to him, from January to November this year, the OSCE SMM recorded 83 deaths and 305 injuries of civilians.