Main Page

From A Closer Look On Syria
(Redirected from Syrian civil war)
Jump to: navigation, search

Welcome to A Closer Look On Syria

For a word on our approach and how you can contribute to the project, continue here. On the Main Page below are general news and some select incidents studied at ACLOS since its creation in 2012. For more current analysis, check "Recent changes" or "New Pages" in the menu to the left, or use the search box.

Syria News

ISIS desert pockets

20 Jun. Al Masdar reports that phase two of the SAA's operation against the ISIS desert pocket between eastern Homs and the Euphrates has led to "full liberation" of the "entire" area. The next day reports about further advances include maps that show that there is still a large, but shrinking pocket of ISIS control left in the desert between Palmyra and Deir ez-Zor.

Thierry Meyssan takes a look at the role Germany has played in the war on Syria (Cold war events also mentioned, such as Alois Brunner 'installed in Damascus', among other Nazi officers 'sent all over the world' to fight the Soviets, and to 'organize local secret services' in Egypt, Iran, Syria 'on the model of the Gestapo'). has published another detailed sitrep with the only German permanently accredited journalist reporting from Syria, Karin Leukefeld (Part I, Part II, German language).

19 Jun. At a UN conference against spread of small arms, Syrian ambassador Ja'afari condemns the on-going practice of arming terrorist groups and names as countries involved Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Turkey, Israel and FUKUS.

The US withdraws its membership from the UN Human Rights Council.

18 Jun. Mysterious foreign airstrikes kill several Syrian, Iraqi troops in east Syria. The US denies that it or members of its coalition were behind what seems to have been armed drone attacks. Later, CNN reports that a proverbial unnamed US government official told them that Israel was behind the attack that killed at least 52 people.

17 Jun. Top PYD Kurd leader Aldar Xelil tells Reuters that they hope Assad is serious about his negotiation offers and think that a deal between them and the Damascus government would be “a historic turning point”.

According to activists, looted and smuggled artifacts from an ancient synagogue in Jobar in the eastern Ghouta have shown up in Turkey, Israel and New York.

Iraq: Just as with the Euphrates river, Turkish upstream machinations with the water supply cause water crisis not limited to drought in the environment of the Tigris (Kurdish Dilja) river.

16 Jun. Aleppo Citadel re-opens for visitors and tourists.

The SDF takes the town Al-Dashishah in the desert of southern Hasaka province near the Iraqi border from ISIS.

15 Jun. After several recent ISIS attacks from inside the Badiya desert pocket, the SAA started a counter-offensive and has liberated around 2000 km² of land, overrunning the cult's defenses. A second phase of the operation targeting the pocket from the south-west is in preparation.

In an interview a YPG representative looks back at the liberation of Gire Spi (Tal Abyad) from ISIS three years ago today.

14 Jun. The US resumes funding of the so-called "White Helmets" organization which was frozen on May 3. $6,6 million are to be allocated through USAID and the State Department.

The SAA extends their deadline for reconciliation negotiations with the "rebels" in Daraa and Quneitra, which has originally been set to today. A member of the reconciliation commitee is shot dead on open streets in "rebel"-held al-Harra town. The doctor is the twelfth member of that committee who has been assassinated during the last two months.

According to information from PMU members, ISIS has, on Iraqi soil, executed 90 of its own fighters for unwillingness to fight the SAA in Syria. The bodies were reportedly thrown into the Euphrates.

13 Jun. Assad gives an interview to Iranian Al-Alam TV's Hosein Murtada (transcript, video).

Kurdish ANHA publishes a detailed report entitled Confessions of terrorist cell linked to Turkish intelligence reveal new facts (Part 1,Part 2).

11 Jun. The Russian defense ministry gives another specific warning about a planned chemical weapons false flag.

10 Jun. The UK's Mail on Sunday publishes an interview with Assad (transcript, video)

9 Jun. Turkey has finished construction of a 764 km long wall on the border to Syria. It is also building a 144 km long wall on the border with Iran.

8 Jun. The chiefs of staff of the Russian and US armies, Gerasimov and Dunford, meet in Helsinki and discuss settlement in Syria and deconfliction in Europe "in a constructive manner".

Reports come in that ISIS managed to break through the SAA defense lines and enter the important city of Albukamal on the Euphrates banks near the Iraqi border. Later it is reported that the SAA managed to secure the city again.

7 Jun. In the village of Zardana in Idlib province a massacre occurs in which according to SOHR at least 44 civilians die. Opposition sources point the finger at a Russian air strike. Russia denies that it flew attacks there and says it knows of infighting with heavy artillery between Nusra and Turkish-backed groups.

6 Jun. The Homs-Hama part of Syria's most important highway M5 re-opens for the first time in seven years.

5 Jun. The Syrian government sends a letter to the UN accusing the US-led "coalition" of crimes against civilians in Hasakah province which the letter says are committed as punishment for their refusal to join "separatist militias" under the SDF umbrella. The letter also accuses the US of directing the remaining ISIS gangs in the desert, all with the goal "to undermine Syria’s sovereignty, safety and territorial integrity".

According to a statistic published by Idlib24, there have been 93 assassination attempts against "rebel" leaders in Idlib province since late April. Over 40 of them have targeted leaders of the al-Qaeda incarnation HTS.

According to a YPG statement, the "last advisory group" has withdrawn from Manbij.

4 Jun. After a meeting in Washington by the two foreign ministers, the US and Turkey release a joint statement in which a mutually endorsed "roadmap" about the situation in Manbij is mentioned (Kurdish view on the statement).

Assad issues two decrees raising the salaries of active military personal by 30% and those of retired military personal by 20%.

The extremely low water levels in the Euphrates due to machinations of Turkey cause draught and animal diseases.

3 Jun. A very close adviser to the late Zahran Alloush turns out to be a government spy.

According to Fars SAA and RuAF launched heavy attacks in northern Hama and Southern Idlib.

According to Southfront and Fars(SAA) and its allies repelled an attack of ISIS along the western bank of the Euphrates River in the southeastern Deir Ezzor countryside.

2 Jun. Representatives of seventy tribes of Aleppo, Raqqa and Hasakah provinces hold a conference entitled "Syrian tribes against foreign intervention and the American presence on Syrian soil".

The Syrian FM Muallem demands that the US leave Al-Tanf immediately.

31 May. RT publishes an interview Murad Gazdiev conducted with Assad (transcript).

Over a year late, the US State Department puts the latest alias of al-Qaeda in Syria on its list of designated terrorist organizations.

29 May. Syria takes the rotating presidency of the UN Conference on Disarmament and will head it for four weeks. Some exceptionally peaceful and unarmed country's delegation throws a hissy fit over it and even stages a little walk-out just to return minutes later. (Syrian opening statement)

Syria recognizes the independence of Abkhazia and South Ossetia to the protest of Georgia and the EU.

Rumours about an agreement with Turkey over Manbij are denied by the US State Department.

28 May. The EU Council extends their sanctions against Syria for another year, justifying them with "the ongoing repression of the civilian population".

According to Sergey Lavrov, ISIS-related groups are becoming more active in the region protected by the US umbrella around Al-Tanf. He expects active steps to end the "pointless" US presence in this desert spot at the Iraqi border.

27 May. According to Al Masdar, the SAA is preparing "the biggest offensive of the year" in the south of the country with the goal to take back the borders in the Deraa and Quinetra provinces. (Indirect non-intervention negotiations between Iran and Israel has been reported).

Turkey deploys 700 members of the "Free Syrian Police" they trained to Afrin canton, led by one Rami Tlass who sounds like a member of a notorious family of army defectors.

Channel4's Alex Thomson once again travels to Syria and reports from Ghouta.

Four Russian soldiers were killed by rebel fire, 3 more wounded. Two of those were killed were assisting in correcting fire; 5 more were wounded and two of those died in hospital. (Some reports of additional losses including 2 PMC). This happened in Deir-ez-Zor province at night, in an attack by a rebel mobile group. According to Russian MoD, 43 rebels and their 6 vehicles with large caliber firearms were destroyed in this battle. Local newspaper in Chita, Russia reports on funerals of 2 soldiers from an artillery brigade killed by shelling on 23 May; with two more funerals elsewhere. On 25 May, IS reports on an attack on pro-government forces appeared, said to be claiming that 23 were killed and 5 captured in the attack (unconfirmed, possibly exaggerated; reported by el-Murid, not seen on SITE intelligence) . See also 23 May news (relation not established). On 26 May, a video was published by the Russian news agency FAN, The SAA, with the assistance of the allies, defeated the terrorist attacks of the "IS" who attacked a number of military posts located in the Meyadin area in the east of Deir Ez-Zor (map).

25 May. Several vague reports about another missile attack on a military installation in Homs province. Ultra-loyalist Ziad Fadel says it was an unsuccessful Israeli attempt at destroying newly arrived and installed Iranian air defense systems.

Turkey And US Agree On Road Map For Cooperation In Manbij City

red: Russian / yellow: Turkish / green: Iranian

24 May. The Russian defense ministry publishes a map showing the observation points of the three guarantors of the Astana process on the borders of the Idlib de-escalation zone.

The SDF captures alive a central ISIS figure who is believed to have been involved in the planning of several terror attacks in France.

The important Mhardeh power plant in northern Hama is once again bombed out of service by terrorists.

23 May. Coalition strike on Syrian positions near T2 pumping station and Iraq border (map) is reported by Hezbollah media unit -Reuters. Pentagon did not confirm the report.

The National Hospital in Tabqa, which had been used as an ISIS headquarter, opens again to the public. According to ANHA it's the second largest public hospital in Syria.

22 May. The occupiers of Afrin continue to destroy and loot historical sites.

Former Southern Damascus pocket

21 May. After a 48 hour ceasefire, the fighting around Yarmouk camp resumes with a general deal apparently still missing. There was some evacuation going on though, with military sources telling Al Masdar about two batches of dozens of buses with family members that left for the east. In the afternoon, the SAA military command declares all of southern Damascus to be terrorist-free and under its control

19 May. An attack on a Christian church in central Groznyi (map 1, 2). One worshiper, who came to Groznyi from Uzbekiztan, and two police officers guarding the church, from Saratov in Russia, were killed. The young attackers, 3 Chechens and an Ingush, armed with a shotgun, handguns, knifes and explosives, were eliminated in Chechen special forces operation, with Kadyrov on the scene. IS branch in the Caucuses claimed responsibility. Kadyrov sought to deny that IS was involved.

Norwegians fought on the Russian side in Syria (robo-translation), via Rusvesna.

Former Rastan pocket

SANA publishes images allegedly showing locals greeting the army in the towns of the Houla plains. Technicians are repairing the former pocket's power grid.

The SAA denies reports that an agreement with the surrounded ISIS militants in southern Damascus has been reached.

The once ISIS-controlled Dabisan gas field is operational again in the hands of the government.

18 May. According to SANA news agency, several blasts have occurred near the airport of Syria's city of Hama (said to be Syrian military airbase; El Murid; Cassad-4 lines under PS, more on Syria, 1; updated report with photos). A "Saraya al-Jihad" group claims responsibility a day later.

According to SANA National Flag hoisted over Aqrab town in Hama countryside FARS: Syrian Army on Verge of Liberating Hajar Al-Aswad in Southern Damascus

17 May. Assad meets Putin in Sochi.

Reports in the Iranian press suggest that Saudi crown prince MBS was killed or injured in a coup-like event on April 21. Other reports sought to disprove the theory.

16 May. Syrian flags are raised in Rastan and Talbiseh after the evacuation process in the east and center of the Rastan pocket has successfully been completed (map). According to later reports, the western part of the pocket around the Houla plains is also already in government hands, which would make the Rastan pocket history. The so-called Houla massacre of May 2012 was the event that led to the creation of this wiki, so seeing that place out of "rebel" hands for the first time in six years certainly is something that inspires our curiosity.

15 May. For the first time in five years, the Damascus-Homs part of the crucial M5 highway is open for civilian traffic.

Al-Ja'afari calls the 9th Astana meeting a success (joint statement).

14 May. Iraq: A coalition of maverick Shi'ite cleric Muqtada al Sadr and communists becomes the strongest bloc in the new parliament, followed by the pro-Iranian Fatah coalition and current prime minister Abadi's Nasr coalition in third. Participation was very low with under 45% of voter population.

13 May. The evacuation of the Rastan pocket continues. After 86 buses left Rastan on Saturday evening, today transport vehicles enter the Houla area for the next batch.

12 May. ANHA publishes a report about a visit to the Tishrin Dam, the first (upper) of the three big Dams on the Syrian Euphrates, which unlike the damaged Euphrates Dam produces less energy than needed only because there is not enough water in the river. An open letter sent to the UK prime minister by ecological organizations explains in detail how this lack is achieved upstream by Turkish machinations, using water as a weapon of war.

Iraq: Parliamentary elections take place.

11 May. The third batch of 71 buses leaves the Rastan pocket carrying 3,000 "rebels" and family mostly from Talbiseh north.

10 May. Some kind of another missile exchange between Israel and Syrian territory occurs, which SOHR describes as initial Israeli strike in the night, then return fire from Syrian territory, then an escalation at dawn with around 70 missiles by Israel, of which many were intercepted. Israeli "defense" minister Lieberman comments that they've hit "nearly all Iranian infrastructure" and hope they've "finished this episode". Both Syria and Iran say that it was the SAA, not Iranian forces who returned fire.

Greek magazine Kathimerini publishes an exclusive interview with Assad (SANA version).

Both the SAA and the SDF make progress against ISIS in the respective desert pockets west and east of the lower Euphrates. In the latter, the SDF in cooperation with the Iraqi army captures five high-ranking ISIS leaders alive.

9 May. The Kazakh foreign ministry announces that a 9th round of Astana talks is scheduled for 14-15 May.

Vanessa Beeley publishes transcripts of interviews she conducted with people fleeing the eastern Ghouta through the humanitarian corridors in the last days before liberation.

8 May. According to SANA, Syrian Air Defense has intercepted two Israeli missiles fired at Damascus countryside. Two civilians were killed from the effects of the intercept. However, footage seems to show that ground targets were successfully hit. SOHR claims 15 dead, among them 8 Iranian soldiers. HRW claims 9 dead "pro-regime soldiers".

The National Committee for Dealing with Victims of Children Recruitment meets in Damascus.

7 May. Russian KA-52 helicopter crashed in Syria, both pilots were killed.

While 171 buses have already left southern Damascus in direction north and the fifth batch is prepared there, the first evacuation buses enter Rastan after the militants handed over huge amounts of weapons including dozens of tanks.

YNET Reports: Yuval Steinitz (about 1, 2, protegees 1,2, 3) 'If Assad continues allowing Iran to operate out of Syria, it will be his end'

Lebanon: Preliminary results of the first parliamentary elections since 2009, which took place yesterday, see Hariri's "Future Movement" losing a third of its seats (to 21), while Hezbollah and its allies win an absolute majority (67) of the 128 seats. The Israeli "Education" minister Naftali Bennett educates his twitter followers with the equation "Lebanon = Hezbollah" over this.

Naftali Bennett: Hezbollah’s apparent success in Lebanon’s elections validates Israel’s policy of holding its northern neighbor responsible for the actions of the Shiite terror group.

6 May. The Iraqi Air Force bombs ISIS targets inside Syria.

After some gangs looted hospitals in al-Bab, the people took to the streets in protest again the Turkish occupation, only to get attacked by the army. In protests against this treatment, today six people die at the hand of the Turkish army. Also in al-Bab, there is infighting triggered by the arrival of a group from Qalamoon which had some old beef with another group already in town. Tens of militants are reportedly killed on both sides.

Reports about the misbehaviour of the Turkish-supported gangs are also coming out of Afrin, where the UN says Turkey prevents fled inhabitants from returning to. Meanwhile, Erdogan promises some more land-grabbing after the early elections on June 24.

5 May. After having split the southern Damascus ISIS pocket into two, the SAA eliminates the southern part.

4 May. ANF publishes a summary on the reconstruction of Raqqa.

The evacuation of the Rastan "rebels" is delayed until after the weekend, some thinking because of an actual lack of buses.

Another specific warning about the staging of another "chemical attack" appears in Russian media.

The OPCW has finished its fact-finding mission to Douma.

The US Navy starts flights over Syria from the Truman carrier group.

3 May. According to CBS, U.S. freezes funding for Syria's "White Helmets" as well as several other aid programs in Syria

A Russian SU-30SM plane crashed at sea shortly after take-off from Khmeimim, both pilots were killed. It is said that enemy fire was not involved, preliminary information blames bird striking an engine (update).

While the first Al Qaeda militants from the South Damascus pocket take the bus north, ISIS continues to take a beating.

According to Al Masdar, only the militants in the towns of Rastan and Talbiseh have agreed to the evacuation, while those in the more rural areas of the Rastan pocket (like the Houla plains) refuse.

2 May. The surrender agreement with the militants in the Rastan pocket seeks to complete the disarmament and evacuation in three days, after which the Homs-Hama highway will be opened for the first time in several years.

The US aircraft carrier strike group around the USS Harry S. Truman enters the Mediterranean armed with over 1,000 cruise missiles.

1 May. Following a 24-hour ceasefire in the Rastan pocket, according to Al Masdar sources the "rebels" are ready to surrender and the terms will be discussed tomorrow.

Another deal made is already in the process of realization: Al Qaeda and other factions in southern Damascus are taking a bus ride north, in exchange for the evacuation of the Shia villages al-Foua and Kefraya in Idlib province. This means there is "only" ISIS left to fight the SAA and allies in Yarmouk camp.

The SDF announces that it will relaunch its campaign against ISIS in eastern Deir ez-Zor province. It had been halted after Turkey attacked Afrin in late January. The operation will proceed in coordination with the Iraqi army.

According to sources speaking to Elijah Magnier, Hezbollah considers its mission in Syria to be accomplished and has already withdrawn most of its forces back to Lebanon.

Archive 2018
09 10 11 12
05 06 07 08
01 02 03 04
Archive 2017
09 10 11 12
05 06 07 08
01 02 03 04
Archive 2016
09 10 11 12
05 06 07 08

Chemical Weapons (starting late 2012)

Main article: Category:Chemical Weapons
Chem 4-9 A.png

A running theme in Syria news is claims about the use of chemical weapons and the red lines they would cross, if confirmed. Our category on this topic covers most reported incidents, especially all high-profile ones like the one that almost started a world war. In 2013, the allegations mostly involved the use of the nerve agent sarin. Since Syria surrendered its stocks to avert war, the allegations from 2014 to present shifted to use of chlorine gas. In both phases, ACLOS has discovered many problems with the accusation of government CW use, as well as much evidence that opposition forces are the ones actually guilty for many incidents. This trend continued when in early April 2017 the topic hit big news again, just to return once more a full year later.

Aleppo Aid Convoy Attack (September 19, 2016)

Main article: Attack on Red Crescent convoy in Urm al-Kubra
OFAB-250 bomb in Urm al-Kubra warehouse.jpg

Around 20 or perhaps 30 civilians are killed in in an attack on an aid convoy near Aleppo, destroying more than a dozen trucks hauling medical aid. This is another disputed incident; the West and its sponsored activists alleges a Russian or Syrian air attack is to blame, while Russia and Syria don't seem to know exactly what happened. ACLOS investigates.

And not to be distracted: this came just two days after the US airstrike on SAA in Deir ez-Zor that killed at least 60 Syrian soldiers in a well-known position of theirs, in a rather implausible "accident."

Houla (May 25, 2012)

Main article: The Houla massacre
Ali-Al-Sayed 1.jpg

The initial ACLOS investigation. The murder of around 108 civilians, among them up to 49 children, in the town of Taldou belonging to Houla in Homs province, is maybe the most famous event that happened in Syria in 2012. It was immediately blamed on the government and led to several countries expelling their Syrian ambassadors. Initially attributed to the use of heavy weapons, it quickly turned out that most of the victims were killed by short-distance violence. This led to the blaming of Alawite "Shabiha" militias loyal to Assad. While the UNHRC closed their investigation in mid August stating to be reasonably certain that indeed government loyalists were the perpetrators, a lot of the conflicting evidence collected in our research was either washed away or not considered at all, while contradictions in the testimonies of witnesses backing their conclusion were denied. A central question is who was in control over the area at the time - our attempt to answer this based on all collected evidence can be found here.

Homs Massacres (2011-present)

Main article: Homs Massacres
Homs Districts all labels.png

Although relatively secure by now, the city districts and rural surroundings of Homs were home to some of the most shocking massacres of the Syrian war, especially in early 2012 when rebels had control over most of the city (that was following a short-lived Syrian military withdrawal brokered by the U.N. and Arab Laague). The ongoing ACLOS effort to list and analyze as many massacres as possible, so far includes more than 40, accounting for at least 1,400-1,900 deaths of almost strictly civilians victims. Alleged details are compared with common family names, district demographics, and the usual ACLOS techniques, to establish useable insights. Consider the Khalidiya Massacre of February, 2012, with 138 people killed, rebels said, as family homes were shelled. But the victims were 100% male and 94% adult, pre-segregated just like the prisoners of rebels the other side claimed the victims were. And this one's no fluke; strangely similar patterns repeat over and over in what makes for chilling reading.

Situation in Syria.png

Ukraine News

22 Jun. On the anniversary of the start of operation Barbarossa (the Nazi invasion of the USSR, 1941), and the start of what is known as the Great Patriotic War, a large public gathering in Lugansk cheered as judges announced life sentences to the top Ukrainian leadership for war and other serious crimes, quoting articles of the Ukrainian criminal code. The event felt heavily scripted and 'Soviet', yet strong and genuine feeling were apparent underneath too.

21 Jun. In the evening, Ukraine resumed firing on DPR (Donetsk airport, Yasinovataya checkpoint) from large caliber machine guns and automatic grenade launchers; later mortars and (tripod)-mounted anti-tank grenade launchers were used to fire on Zaitsevo. It is reported that DPR suppressed Ukrainian firing position near Kominternovo, near Mariupol, which was used to shell the village for days.

Poroshenko called Putin on the phone (press statements: Kremlin, Poroshenko office).

Russia-born SBU general Alexander Kuts was named new governor of Ukrainian-held Donetsk region. Kuts served in 'anti-corruption' branch of SBU till 2014. Since 2015 he was head of Donetsk SBU, and was accused by Zakharchenko in being one of organizers of Motorola assassination.

Text and audio of one of the recorded conversations of Poroshenko with a runaway Ukrainian MP and oligarch Onishenko is published, allegedly showing corruption.

Aleksei Bidusenko, who is said to change sides to join LPR taking secret documents with him, has been captured by Ukrainian reconnaissance group. The announcement quotes Rusvesna article (24 June 2017). In that article it is stated that the Ukrainian side is seeking Bidusenko who has left his post with some documents, and that LPR opened a search for him too, trying to help him to escape. (His fate is unclear from the 2017 article).

20 Jun. Ukraine shelled Gorlovka, a civilian man was wounded.

19 Jun. (morning), Kiev. Protesters gather in front of the Rada, shout 'Gan'ba', some clashes with the police (video). Many are war or ATO veterans protesting worsening social conditions.

15 Jun. DPR ombudsman: in the past week, 5 DPR soldiers were killed, 17 people (6 soldiers, 8 civilian men, 3 civilian women) were wounded.

13 Jun. Anatoly Gritsenko, Ukrainian ex-DM, claims that he is one of the participants of 'a working group' which includes members from Ukraine, Russia, France, Germany and the US, with experience at the level of (ex) foreign ministers, defense ministers, ambassadors. He claims that the group meets from time to time in Europe to develop proposals for the leadership on issues such as peacekeepers, elections, amnesty. (Gritsenko versions of those proposals are not too different from Volker's).

12 Jun. Ukraine shelled Donetsk, Gorlovka areas with mortars, BMP guns, and small firearms. One DPR soldier was killed. A civilian was wounded in Dokuchaevsk by Ukrainian large caliber machine gun fire. It is also said that Ukraine deployed anti-aircraft systems near Kramatorsk, provocations feared.

LPR. it is reported that Ukrainian special operations forces arrived dressed in Russian uniforms; provocations feared.

Trump and Merkel have friendly chat during a break in the summit

9 Jun. The G7 leaders, meeting in Canada, fail to reach an agreement on a communique condemning Russia for its "illegal annexation of Crimea".

8 Jun. Ukraine fired mortars on (1) Zaitsevo, near Gorlovka. A civilian was wounded (2) Sakhanka, in DPR south; a civilian was wounded here too; a residential building, gas pipeline and power lines were damaged

7 Jun. Putin: if Ukraine attacks in Donbass, that will have 'very heavy consequences for Ukrainian statehood as a whole' (answering a question from Zakhar Prilepin, as reported by Rusvesna, full QA transcript to appear. Many questions, including Skripal, etc ).

Ukraine fired mortars on Golubovskoe village, LPR, a civilian bus was hit, 6 passengers were wounded

6 Jun. Donetsk water filtering station lost power as a result of Ukrainian mortar shelling. This happened on the same day as OSCE SMM intensive monitoring near the station ended.

Ukrainian MoI Avakov: The Minsk process played a role and at the moment it is dead (robo-translation)

31 May. Suspect arrested in Babchenko affair tells that (he believed) he was helping Ukrainian security services. He is a Ukrainian businessman involved with weapons deliveries for ATO with in the past . Organizer suspect name has been made public. His attorney: Boris Herman (Герман, German) is an Executive Director of the Ukrainian-German joint venture "Schmeisser", the only non-state enterprise for the manufacture of weapons in our country. It has long industrial relations with the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, Boris himself is known for his volunteer activity for the needs of ATO. It is his optics that is used on the rifles of our snipers, namely, he upgrades and creates the most powerful sniper complexes based on existing army weapons.

In another report, the hired 'killer' himself came to SBU. Ukrainian activist, ATO veteran, and formerly Christian Orthodox hierodeacon Alexey Tsimbaliuk claimed on social media that he is that 'killer'.

Arkady Babchenko shot dead with 4 bullet holes to his back (fake)

30 May. Arkady Babchenko arose from dead to have a press conference (Rusvesna)

29 May. DPR MOD: one DPR soldier is killed by Ukrainian shelling

Pro-Ukrainian, pro-Maidan, Russian (opposition) journalist Arkady Babchenko was shot and killed by unknowns in Kiev (TASS, Echo 1, 2; TV Rain; FB; Meduza; Rusvesna/photo, Nebenzya/UN). Ilya Ponomarev (could be hired Ukrainian ex nats-batts); PM Vladimir Groisman ('Russia is behind'), Russian FM (demands investigation).

UNSC briefing on Ukraine. Nebenzya on video here, Eng.

28 May. DPR ombudsman. In the period from May 18 to 25, 9 people were killed (including 6 were military personnel, 2 civilian women and one civilian man), 17 people were wounded (including 6 servicemen, 4 civilian women and 7 civilian men). Since the beginning of 2018, 68 people were killed (including 57 military men, 7 civilians and 4 civilian women), 145 people were wounded (including 89 military personnel, 36 civilians men, 19 civilian woman and one child under the age of 18). Since the beginning of the armed conflict in the Donetsk People's Republic 4635 people were killed, among them 610 women and 4025 men, including 76 children under the age of 18.

27 May. After attempted Ukrainian attacks on Gorlovka, it is said that situation somewhat stabilized.

Gazprom and Turkey signed the 'Turkish stream' protocol. This comes few days after it was announced that Russia gave Turkey a 1 bln USD discount in a dispute over past deliveries.

26 May. Reports of Ukraine shelling and/or (unconfirmed) establishing positions in Petrovskoe, south of Donetsk (map), a supposed separation zone, threatening DPR-held city of Dokuchaevsk. In a later report, it is denied that Ukraine made advances in Petrovskoe, which is still under DPR control. Ukraine established positions in Viktorovka from last summer, and have recently returned to their old position on height 202.9, 2 km south of the village.

RT publishes a 50min documentary film about the construction of the recently opened bridge over Kerch Strait which connects Crimea with mainland Russia.

23 May. DAN news: captured Ukrainian soldier testified on Ukrainian plans to 'attack' in Donbass before the start of the football World Cup in Russia (14 June-15 July), and that recently given to Ukraine Javelins and other heavy equipment will be 'placed on the front lines' prior to the attack (no independent confirmation). Poroshenko recently presented Ukrainian official version of Javelins purpose, highlighting his role in getting them (but even taking the official version, propaganda or motivational use,- if not more, - is not excluded) .

A policeman is killed by Ukrainian artillery shelling of Gorlovka.

European "Human Rights" court decided that Ukrainian ban on land sales is a human rights violation, in a case brought up to the court by 2 (two) Ukrainians. In response, alternative MP Lyashko threatened to 'burn' Rada if the moratorium is lifted. (It was long feared that lifting the ban, pressed on by Ukraine sponsors, will result in loss of control on top of the range but low priced Ukrainian agricultural lands to transnational conglomerates).

BBC: Trump lawyer 'paid by Ukraine' to arrange White House talks

21 May. An important bridge is destroyed in LPR, it is feared that this may indicate preparations for a major Ukrainian attack.

As part of continued escalation near Gorlovka, Ukrainian 'Donbass' battalion attacked DPR checkpoint, capturing 3 and killing 1 DPR soldier. Ukrainian losses also reported.

Ukrainian sources showed aerial video of strikes on DPR positions, praising those strikes.

19 May. Gorlovka and vicinity remains a flashpoint. A civilian woman, 1932 DOB, and a DPR soldier were killed. Ukraine shelled residential areas with banned munitions, said to contain nails. New Ukrainian positions near captured by Ukraine Yuzhnoe came under DPR fire; it is said that 2 Ukrainian soldiers were killed and 1 wounded.

18 May. DPR. Oleg Mamaev, commander of '[Piatnashka' (Пятнашка) battalion died of his wounds received in Avdeevka industrial zone flashpoint.

According to Russian sources, 3 Canadian instructors were killed and two American wounded by landmine explosion, some Ukrainian soldiers were wounded. DPR blames Ukraine in attempting a provocation by presenting this as a DPR attack.

Ukraine captured settlement of Yuzhnoe near Gorlovka.

Reporters without borders on the arrest of Kirill Vyshinsky, a Ukrainian journalist who heads RIA Novosti Ukraine

17 May. Civilian woman, 1983 DOB, resident of Golmovsky near Gorlovka killed by Ukrainian shelling, her daughter was orphaned.

Russia opens a criminal case against the Washington Examiner author Tom Rogan for "public calls for terrorist activity on Russian territory" in the article mentioned below.

15 May. In a ceremony Putin opens the vehicle section of the 19 km long bridge over Kerch Strait that will connect mainland Russia and Crimea. The Washington Examiner asks Ukraine to blow up the bridge.

13 May. Residential areas of Gorlovka shelled by Ukraine, a civilian man wounded, several houses hit.

8 May. Belorussian citizen who served in Donbass opolchenie was sentenced to two years prison term in Belarus'

7 May. Zaitsevo, near Gorlovka, was shelled by Ukraine, an old woman was wounded.

6 May. Ukraine shelled Gorlovka, a civilian man, 1938 DOB, was wounded, several houses were damaged

5 May. Marat Mazitovich Musin, founder of ANNA news, often reporting from Syria, died from natural causes in at a gathering of military-sport organizations and cadets in Kazan', from blood clot/heart problem. He was economics professor, and an author of 19 or more books, some co-authored with el-Murid.

4 May. DPR ombudsman: in the past week, 6 people (4 soldiers and 2 civilian men) were killed, 14 people (7 soldiers, 4 civilian women, 3 civilian men) were wounded. Since 1 Jan'18, 51 were killed (44 soldiers, 6 civilian men, 1 civilian woman), 108 were wounded (72 soldiers, 23 civilian men, 13 civilian women).

3 May. Brazilian ex-opolchenie Rafael Lusvargi (earlier (7 Oct'16) captured by Ukraine in transit, charged, sentenced, and released by Ukrainian court decision prior to a failed group of prisoners exchange, living since in a monastery in Kiev) is outed by 'Radio Liberty', said to be after local employer of Brazilian embassy was present at a meeting of his attorney with Brazilian consulate reps, trying to secure his Brazilian passport. Lusvargi was then captured and harassed by members of a right-wing paramilitary group S-14. Later it was said that he is in SBU custody. New trial will be in Pavlograd. Brother of his attorney fears for Rafael's life and safety. Lusvargi will be kept in custody, by the decision pf Pavlograd court

1 May. DPR MoD: A civilian couple was wounded on May holidays by Ukrainian shelling of Verhnetoretskoe. The Ukrainian militants suffered a well-deserved punishment: their gunspots were suppressed by the military personnel of the DPR from the armament not prohibited by the Minsk agreements

30 Apr. U.S. Confirms Delivery Of Javelin Antitank Missiles To Ukraine

Poroshenko announced end of ATO and start of 'joint operation of armed forces', which is aimed at 'defending territorial integrity' and will only end 'when the last piece of Ukrainian land is liberated, including Crimea', which is somehow supposed to happen by 'political-diplomatic means'.

29 Apr. LPR people's militia spokesman Marochko: Ukraine increases troop deployment, preparing for a solution by force. Nine BMP, two MLRS "Grad" and four wagons with personnel arrived to the village of Rubezhnoe by rail. The arrival of additional forces was also noted in the settlement of Belovodsk. There, according to our data, a company was sent from the battalion "Poltava" of the National Guard of Ukraine. Opolchenie sources express concern on attacks or provocations with approaching traditional V-day celebrations and parades.

28 Apr. In the evening, a civilian man was wounded in Ukrainian shelling of Petrovskoe, Donetsk in his family home, with women and children staying in the same house -report and video.

Ukraine shelled DPR and LPR. DPR MoD: residential area of Dokuchaevsk was hit, 2 civilian men killed, a civilian woman wounded. There were 17 violations in the past day by Ukraine, 77 mortar shells were fired. DPR military correspondents: "at 9:36, front line near Dokuchaevsk is under fire, mortars and tanks". Opolchenie -linked source describe it as shelling of DRP, and a bit lighter shelling of LPR, mostly aimed at the corps, but residential areas hit as well. This is happening despite the latest Easter ceasefire, in force from 30 March.

An old woman, 1942 DOB, wounded in Ukrainian shelling of Donetsk while planting on her plot of land -(report and video).

24 Apr. Russian FM published detailed report on arms control issues, suspends the Russia-US treaty on utilization of plutonium.

It is said that a Russian defense attorney Mark Feigin who defended Pussy Riot and Nadezhda Savchenko was de-barred (stripped of his attorney status) base don a complaint by Anatoly Sharii and his attorney.

A hospital in Zaitsevo is destroyed by Ukrainian shelling-a video, several artillery craters, still smoldering ruins

21 Apr. LPR. ministry of security source is quoted saying that Ukraine prepares a false flag sabotage operation against chemical industry facility 'Zarya' (dawn) in the city of Rubezhnoe, Lugansk region, to coincide with Poroshenko visit to the Donbass. The aim of the sabotage is to undermine one of the warehouses of the enterprise where explosive substances are stored, and to blame the authorities and LPR armed forces and use this to justify introduction of a 'peacekeeping mission' to the Donbass.

20 Apr. DPR MOD accused 'Azov' in staged provocation: at around 6 a.m. today, Azov militants fired at the area of the village of Lebedinskaya, located in the territory under their control. In addition, a group of journalists of the TV channels "1 + 1", "Inter", "TSN" was seen last night in the vicinity of this settlement.

17 Apr. DPR. Five employees of Donetsk filtering station were wounded by Ukrainian firearms fire which hit a convoy of cars bringing a shift of workers to the facility. Following the attack, it was decided to suspend filtering station operations for 5 days initially. Alternative water supply from the Upper Kalmius reservoir is being established.

LPR. Ukraine shelled military equipment being prepared for the traditional Victory Day parade in Lugansk, with OSCE notified in advance. Historic WW2 era anti-tank howitzers, T-34 tank and LPR vehicles were damaged (video). Historic weapons are being repaired and are expected to participate in the parade after restoration, including the T-34 tank

UAF prepare pontoon bridge across the Seversky Donets

12 Apr. UAF prepare a pontoon crossing across the Seversky Donets on the approaches to the LPR -Semen Pegov, Rusvesna.

11 Apr. DPR MOD: Seven civilians were wounded in overnight shelling of Donetsk by Ukraine, about 60 flats or houses were damaged, a gas pipeline was damaged in 12 locations. Basurin calls this 'an act of genocide', links it with planned international visits to Ukraine and Donbass and other international events, submits that it is done to provoke return fire and use it to blame LDPR at those meetings. He indicates readiness to respond (no description of any actual response).

7 Apr. DPR MoD: Ukrainian sniper killed a civilian woman, moving on Ukrainian territory towards DPR; also on 6 Apr. a DPR soldier was killed by UAF sniper

6 Apr. DPR MoD weekly report, 2 DPR soldiers killed by sniper fire, 101 ceasefire violations by Ukraine, examples of Ukraine covering losses and thefts, such as 2 UAF RSG killed and 3 wounded on landmine field on March 30 near settlement of Luganskoe; RSG members themselves were blamed to avoid paying compensation

4 Apr. DPR MoD: More claims on provocations prepared against international representatives, including Danish de-mining Group.

3 Apr. DPR MOD: Ukraine prepares staged provocations, in particular against journalists, to be covered by media stationed in ATO area. Reminds on kidnapping, torture and murder of DPR soldier Tkachenko, calls for an investigation. Describes SBU program 'they wait for you at home', renaming it 'betray your home', and portraying this as propaganda played by actors with real people responding getting in trouble (allegedly missing, maimed, or received prison terms claimed to be unrelated to the program).

Ivan Bubenchik, participant of the Euro-Maidan in Kiev (2014) who previously publicly admitted killing 'Berkut' police, with shots from behind, is detained in Kiev and brought to the court in Kiev, to be informed on suspicion of committing those crimes. Bubenchik previously ignored demands to appear in court. He is the first to be charged in killing 'Berkut', investigated since 2014.

2 Apr. DPR soldier repairing window of one of the damaged houses was killed by UAF sniper fire in Kominternovo

Kommersant: Normandy format meeting may be planned in Aachen, Germany, in May. Ukrainian sources are quoted to link this with approaching presidential elections in Ukraine, lack of progress, and 'poisoned climate' created by the Scripals incident. Peacekeepers are said to be on agenda. Obviously with Moscow not on board not much can be accomplished.

Russian Duma panel suggested migration amnesty for Ukrainian citizens and those without citizenship arriving from the territory of L/DPR republics. Migration situation is not ideal and is highlighted by cases of opolchenie members under threat of deportation to Ukraine, where they are likely to recive lengthy prison terms and serious mistreatment. The latest such case, Nikolai Tregub, under deportation orders, is described by a well-known journalist Steshin in the (mainstream) Komsomolskaya Pravda, 3 Apr.


More videos on talk page


  • Recent history in a nutshell in those photos to the right:
Poroshenko, Kiska - EU entry at Uzhgorod
Alley of Angels, in memory of killed children of Donbass. Ukraine "über alles"?-Donetsk Partisan
Ukrainian AF killed and wounded in 'ATO', Maidan, Kiev
  • Aftermaths of Ukrainian shelling of the village Zheltoe (Yellow), LPR, 29 Nov. 2016 lug-info.


Note on sources. At present, pro -Ukrainian and pro-Russian sources more often than not offer opposing claims on events, and a choice needs to be made. Currently factual part of reporting by pro-Russian sources appear more accurate, complete, and closer to truth, out of the two available alternatives. It is also less known, as the other side has greater support by the Western mass media. For that reason, a lot of reporting here is based on Russian sources. It is not done for the sake of supporting any pre-determined narrative. If and when Ukrainian sources appear more accurate, they will be used without a reservation.

Some Ukrainian source reporting is very good, for example Tatyana Montyan numerous videos, some of them translated, are spot-on and at times appear closer to reality than any pro-this or that narratives. However the bulk of Ukrainian media is unreliable, and often just unbelievable, not passing cross checks (e.g. as was illustrated numerous times by well-read on both sides Ukrainian journalist Anatoly Sharii); or else, is filled with hate and may cheer more people harmed or killed (any of such sort, from any side, is totally unsupported here).


Official Ukrainian sources

Ukrainian media


Minsk Agreements

Safety zone (no heavy weapons) agreed at Normandy format meeting in Minsk, 12.02.2015. Black: current front line; red-19 September line. At the bottom it says: source: the web site of the President of Russia


Archive 2018
09 10 11 12
05 06 07 08
01 02 03 04
Archive 2017
09 10 11 12
05 06 07 08
01 02 03 04
Archive 2016
09 10 11 12
05 06 07 08
01 02 03 04
Archive 2015
09 10 11 12
05 06 07 08
02 03 04

Ukraine (2014 - Today)

ACLOS has covered events in Ukraine since the 2014 regime change and through the ensuing conflict. Three most important subjects among many considered:

  • Maidan snipers February, 2014 Analyzing the mysterious February, 2014 shootings that helped demonize Ukraine's government at just the right time.
  • Odessa Trade Union massacre May 2, 2014 Analyzing the killing of dozens of pro-federalism activists in Odessa, which the civilized world shrugged at and ignored. (based on numerous videos of the event, documented authorities response, and witness interviews; still mostly on talk pages).
  • MH17 (2014, July - Today)
Followed from the very beginning. However still remains mostly on talk page, sub-pages, and sub-page talk pages.

Kobane (2014, July, September - Summer 2015)

Main article: Assault on Kobane
Kobane water cannon.jpg

A very similar chain of events like years before in Ras Al-Ayn (see below), only this time it made the news (months after we started the article). Not least because this time, the attackers call themselves part of ISIS, the "newly arrived" enemy of all that's good and decent.

Ras Al-Ayn (November 8, 2012 - Summer 2013)

Main article: Assault on Ras Al-Ayn
Sere kaniye burial.jpg

Ras Al-Ayn, directly at the Turkish border in the north-east, early November 2012: The Kurdish dominated and mostly self-governed town gets assaulted by hundreds of Islamist fighters coming across the border from Turkey, under the eyes and with help of the Turkish military. After typical sectarian assaults on the civilian population, Kurdish militia takes up the fight against the foreigners. In the process of the following weeks, the town sees shelling by both the Syrian and the Turkish army, several defeats of the Islamists with retreat behind the Turkish border, and finally a fragile truce. On January 16, again large groups of foreign fighters with tanks cross the Turkish border and heavy clashes break out. After a month of heavy fighting, another peace agreement is signed on February 17. Five months later, following an Islamist attack on female Kurdish fighters, heavy clashes lead to the final conquer of the border station by the Kurds, which leads to increasing tensions in other parts of the region.

Tremseh (July 12, 2012)

Main article: Tremseh massacre
Confiscated tunisian passports.jpg

When news of this alleged massacre reached the media, it came with alarming numbers of up to 300 civilians murdered in the small village of Tremseh northwest of Hama. In the following hours and days, both pro- and anti-government sources helped to clear the picture of what is now mostly called the "Battle of Tremseh" between the army and anti-government fighters who had used the village as their base for operations in the region. The real death toll seems to be some civilians caught in the crossfire and a couple of dozen killed anti-government fighters. In addition, many including foreigners were arrested and their arms and equipment confiscated.

Other research...