Ukraine news

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Talk Pages: News-Talk Page... Category Ukraine Talk Page... Minsk Protocol.... Ukraine War Casualties...Odessa massacre...... MH17 Crash

December 11, 2015: Oleg Barna, a Poroshenko block deputy, presents flowers to Prime Minister Yatseniuk (click on the picture for the linked video)
American and Canadian instructors prepare Ukrainian soldiers , Petr Sagaidachnyi center, Apr. 4, 2016, Ukraine. Also on this video from Lviv

Recent updates

News

Alley of Angels, in memory of killed children of Donbass. Ukraine "über alles"?-Donetsk Partisan
Ukrainian AF killed and wounded in 'ATO', Maidan, Kiev

25 May. DPR Minsk negotiator announced that another attempt of separation of forces is scheduled on 28 May in Stanitsa Luganskaya, LPR.

LPR commander Vladimir Tsvyah, call name Combat, and his reconnaissance chief were killed on the front lines, according to a war correspondent A. Rogatkin.

23 May. US assistance to Ukraine is cut to 1/3 of current level, from 667 204 mln USD (page 60); earlier reports suggested that assistance will be replaced by loans.

Another Ukrainian provocation is reported in Avdeevka. DPR says that it was shelled with MLRS from Vodyanoe, in order to blame DPR. A civilian was wounded.

Second anniversary of Mozgovoi death - report has notes from his diary (2014-2015, of anti-oligarchical sort), a poem he wrote, photos and videos.

22 May. Northern suburb of Donetsk was fired on by Ukraine with MLRS missiles

A woman was wounded by Ukrainian shelling in Yasinovataya

Avdeevka coke-chemical plant was shelled by Ukraine, around a hectare of territory was on fire

21 May. One DPR soldier was killed by Ukrainian shelling

20 May. Poroshenko sends a batch of "beautiful T-80 tanks" to the front line. Also, meets Merkel.

A marriage in DPR, soldier & an author/ war correspondent.

In the past day, 3 DPR soldiers were killed, 1 wounded.

Two civilians were wounded when Ukraine opened fire on a coach station in Trudovskoe, western Donetsk; by preliminary information, RPG was used.

Residential area of Makeevka was hit by Ukrainian fire, houses were damaged -report and photo

19 May. DPR MOD: In the past week, 324 ceasefire violations by Ukraine, 2146 mortar, tank, artillery shells and missiles fired. , 2 DPR soldiers and 2 civilians killed, 5 soldiers and 6 civilians wounded. (Rus)(Eng.) (Strelkov: 5 killed, Yasinovataya checkpoint, on 17 or 18 May).

DPR ombudsman, 6-18 May: 14 killed, including 13 soldiers and 1 civilian woman killed on 17 May in Krutaya balka (video); 42 were wounded including 25 soldiers, 8 civilian women, 9 civilian men, including 2 children.

LPR sit-reps, Eng (still no disengagement in Stanitsa Luganskaya as of 18 May, despite many past attempts).

18 May. "Arrested SBU saboteur" give details about killing of LPR commander "Baggi"; appears to have a written text below camera view but give many details and could be legit) . Cooperated in investigation experiments, giving many details, quickly.

17 May. Ukraine shelled DPR in the past day, after raising more accusations. 1 DPR soldier was killed, 2 wounded. (Eng.)(Rus.)

Ukrainian move to ban in Ukraine Russian-based social media such as Vkontacte was criticized (Ukr. source) by a Human Rights Watch representative and by Council of Europe Secretary General Thorbjørn Jagland. Media coverage: (Ukr. source); (TASS Eng).

Document on EU visa liberalisation with Ukraine is signed

14 May. Basurin: 1 DPR soldier wounded.

Poroshenko talks about continuing with Normandy format, describes details of US involvement, etc (Ukr.)

Президент наголосив, що США не лише стратегічний партнер України, але і одна з країн-гарантів Будапештського меморандуму. «Безумовно, розраховуємо на дуже потужну і ефективну підтримку України з боку США, в тому числі і в Нормандському форматі», - зазначив Глава держави. Він додав: «Найближчим часом планується обрати спеціального представника США, який буде відповідати за координацію дій з Україною». ...Змінювалися прізвища, але був відповідний дипломат в ранзі посла, який повністю був проінформований про весь зміст переговорів у Нормандському форматі, і вони координувалися з нашими американськими партнерами

13 May. Ukrainian-controlled Avdeevka residential area was shelled, and 4 civilians were killed. Ukraine accused Novorossian fighters (Zhebrivskii)(112.ua)(glavkom.ua, with photos). DPR : 'This is another provocation, on orders of OG "Donetsk" commander with the involvement of the 72nd separate mechanized brigade, the Right Sector *, the National Guard of Ukraine, as well as foreign media, staged before Minsk'. - The 72nd brigade shoots on the positions of the DPR, the "Right Sector" shoots on Avdeevka, foreign media reports this." Opolchenie correspondent 'Krik' gives angry, emotional account close to DPR version of events, mentions a mortar strike by Right Sector (timed by VK 5:07 pm).

  • A warning on provocation planned during Eurovision competition in Kiev was given on May 3. Details do not fully match (9 May in Kiev in the warning). However, Poroshenko drama, cancelling his Eurovision speech
  • Basurin: After a thorough study of photos and video materials, which are demonstrated by the Ukrainian media, we affirm that the strike was inflicted from the side of the Vodyanoe settlement, which is under the control of Ukraine, and where, according to our intelligence, just the day before yesterday, FOUR tanks arrived and along two howitzers D-30 and self-propelled artillery "Acacia." We have previously repeatedly noted the presence in this area of such weaponry" (photos, graphics in the report)(Eng).
  • Geolocated at Cassad

Basurin, posted on 14:10 local (Eng. transl.),(video): in the past day, 1 DPR soldier killed and 1 wounded. More shelling and provocations expected, prior to a contact group meeting in Minsk on May 15.

UAF sit-rep.

13 May In Krivoy Rog and ex-Dneprodzerzhinsk (now Kamenskoe), Dnepropetrovsk region of Ukraine, the radicals set fire to the offices of the "Opposition block" (Rusvesna),(112.ua: no victims, no suspects).

12 May DPR MOD: In the past week, 331 ceasefire violations by Ukraine, 2122 artillery, mortar and tank shells fired. 3 DPR soldiers were killed and 3 wounded. 7 civilians were wounded. (Rus.), (Eng.)

LPR: In the past week, 47 ceasefire violations by Ukraine, 996 artillery and mortar shells fired (Rus.)(Eng).

UAF: In the past day, two Ukrainian servicemen were killed in action yesterday, and six more were wounded ... One of the killed troops was an engineer who was demining an area, and the rest came under hostile fire.

11 May. Lugansk and Donetsk referendums were held 3 years ago (HQ, pro-peace, music/poetry commemoration video).

Ukrainian documentary investigation of Sheremet murder (20 July '16 news) appeared, claiming that an SBU man was seen near his home on the night of the murder; SBU spokeswoman Elena Gitlianskaya after movie release stated that this person was fired or left SBU on 29 Apr. 2014. More on Sheremet and talk pages.

Approval of visa-free regime for Ukraine keeps moving on, expected to be in place this June.

10 May. A woman and a girl wounded by UAF shelling in Kuibyshev district of Donetsk; woman refused hospitalization, the girl hospitalized -DAN news (Eng). One DPR soldier was killed and one wounded.

1 UAF soldier was killed and 4 wounded.

Eurovision.ua; Eurovision/ua.usembassy.gov, Eurovision.ru.

After a clash yesterday, another bloody clash between 30-40 Banderas and some 8 Afghanistan vets in their office in Nikolaev 1,2.

T-34 tank and Katyusha, V-Day parade in Donetsk, May 9, 2017.

9 May. Victory Day parades in Donetsk, Lugansk, Simpheropol, Sevastopol, Moscow (video).

Rusvesna: Kmeimim, Aleppo, too.
Odessa videos: 'immortal regiment + young sailors, and music + sing-a-song+ clashes in the end.
Kiev videos: clashes, OUN HQ 1 2,UNSO vs. 'Immortal Regiment'.
Dnepr: ATO vets clashed with redflag 'socialists' and harshly subdued by police 1234.Filatov fuming, cutting funding to WW2 and funds ATO vets. Next day, regional and city police chiefs were fired.
Mariupol: competing marches, St. George band burned by Ms Bandera.
Immortal regiment-Moscow.
The Value of Remembering-Amb. John Tefft, with a-call-for-unity type message.
Apparently Poroshenko reconciliation twitt

8 May. DPR. Civilian woman is wounded by Ukrainian shelling in Zaitsevo, near Gorlovka -DAN news.

On the eve of the traditionally revered 9 May WW2 Victory Day celebrations (photo report), two fragmentation-type munitions were placed on a rode to Saur-Mogila memorial site, one of them exploded. No injuries or deaths reported. Zakharchenko blames Kiev. It is claimed that munitions were set on a timer and one exploded before Zakharchenko was about to travel the road for the celebrations. It is said that more timed charges were discovered after search. Presumed photos appeared (Timer-Odessa); Rusvesna has stock photos.

Mother-Motherland, Kiev
Mother-Motherland, Kiev, May 8, 2017

Poroshenko chutzpah attempt to link the so called 'ATO', results of which are covered here, with WW2 day of remembrance, showing himself and some ATO veterans in the background of Soviet WW2 memorial, despite being quite the opposite in that context. (Below: state emblem of the Soviet Union covered by Ukrainian and EU flags for the sake of presentation). Kiev plans to switch to 8 May holiday, aligning with the Western V-Day, instead of the traditional 9 May holiday in USSR/Russia; the move was criticized in Russia.

Odessa. Vandals destroyed avenue of birches in memory of victims on May 2, 2014 , destroyed Zhukov memorial --Timer-Odessa.

5 May. DPR MOD: in the past week, 339 ceasefire violations by Ukraine, 1788 banned by Minsk agreement missiles, artillery and mortar shells, tank shells were fired. 1 DPR soldier was skilled and 3 wounded. 1 civilian was killed and 5 wounded. (Eng.)(Rus.)

LPR: 39 ceasefire violations, 1,011 artillery and and mortar-shells fired by Ukraine (Eng.)

A document emerged in social media appearing to show a response of Ukrainian presidential administration official, telling that Minsk agreements are not legally binding and based on goodwill (TASS).

According to Ukrainian official sources, Russian ships 'attempted to capture' Ukrainian vessel, ordering it to 'stop and lay in drift' (застопорить ход и лечь в дрейф), (Rusvesna)(112.ua). That happened near Crimea where territorial waters may be disputed; Ukrainian sources make a point of the vessel response that it was in Ukrainian waters, while Russians believed it briefly entered Russian territory. Eventually the vessel continued on his way to Skadovsk. It is said that vessel crew will receive rewards, for what (if not accidental) could be a provocation with tragic consequences.

4 May. Radio Svoboda published a video of OSCE car explosion (see news, 23 Apr.) Rusvesna: who filmed it, and why? (geolocating camera on Ukrainian territory, and making a case that it is filmed by a high-res camera from Ukrainian fire correction mast). A user claim but no primary evidence that this is OSCE camera. Rusvesna: OSCE cameras display technical info, time, etc, and attribution. LPR blames Ukraine for the attack.

2 May. Odessa massacre anniversary. Most of Kulikovo field is blocked by police, people bring flowers to the Trade Union house. Reports and photos: Timer-Odessa; Rusvesna; Cassad

30 Apr. Ukraine erected a new dam to block the flow of water to Crimea. That was going on since 2014, water is supplied from artesian wells. In north Crimea, there is some shortage of water for agriculture, compensated by produce delivered from Russia. No shortage of water for people, just brings peoples further apart.

Task Force Pluto - Fischer (left) was arrested on war crimes charges.

29 Apr. Poland arrests an Austrian man suspected of war crimes while fighting in Donbass of the side of the Kiev government. An European arrest warrant had been issued a few weeks earlier. Online researchers discover his identity.

28 Apr. DPR MOD: 287 (Rus.) ceasefire violations by Ukraine in the past week, 1097 shells from banned weapons (artillery, mortars, tank fire) fired (Rus.)(Eng.). 3 DPR soldiers were killed; (MOD); ombudsman lists 2 soldiers killed, and a civilian man, 1981 DOB, wounded on 30 January, died in hospital. 18 people (11 soldiers, 1 civilian woman, 6 civilian men including a child were wounded (ombudsman).

26 Apr. DPR. Ukrainian shelling continues, artillery, mortars, BMP and BTR, grenade launchers, small firearms used. In the past day, 1 DPR soldier was killed, 2 soldiers and 4 civilians wounded (Rus.)

In Chernobyl, Poroshenko announced that one further step in approving visa-free travel to Europe was cleared

25 Apr. Ukraine cut its electricity supply to LPR. It is said that electric power will be supplied from Russia, after Ukraine cut supply. LPR announced that it (mostly) restored power within 1 hour.

DPR: in the past day, 2 civilians were wounded by Ukrainian shelling (Rus.)(Eng.).

23 Apr. A civilian was wounded by Ukrainian shelling in Zaitsevo near Gorlovka, DPR.

LPR. OSCE observer was killed when OSCE marked car was hit by IED explosion on a road from Slavyanoserbsk to Sokolniki near village of Prishib (map). Another observer was wounded. LPR blamed Ukrainian RSG, stated that they recently warned about provocations planned against international observers. LPR leader expressed condolences.

Basurin -DAN news: OSCE car hit anti-tank mine; according to available information one of the cars was travelling on back roads, which is prohibited by OSCE SMM mandate.
OSCE SMM report. (Driving on a secondary road previously used by the SMM).
LPR claimed that they discovered a reconnaissance and sabotage group hideout nearby ("лежка"); found and defused two more landmines and a trip wire. LPR also provided names of Ukrainian suspects (without really explaining how it was determined).

21 Apr. DPR weekly update: in the past week, 235 ceasefire violations by Ukraine, 1445 banned shells and mortar shells were fired (Rus.)(Eng.) DPR ombudsman: in the past week, 8 DPR soldiers were killed, 15 soldiers were wounded (no civilian casualties mentioned for this week).

LPR: in the past week, Ukraine fired 320 banned shells and mortar shells.

Fort Russ publishes an English language translation of a long interview with post-putsch interim president Oleksandr Turchynov conducted by BBC Russian Service a week earlier.

20 Apr. Basurin: "As it became known from the source in the command of the military unit A0456 (Odessa city), on the eve of the May holidays, the Ukrainian Armed Forces, specifically the Ukrainian Navy units as part of one combined brigade of marines, are preparing a plan for active military operations in the Volnovakhsky and the Novoazovsky districts " ... "According to the (Kiev's) command's plan, on April 23-24, two mobile subversive groups are planned to be deployed to the area of the village of Shirokino..." (Eng.)

DPR: in the past day, 25 ceasefire violations by Ukraine- mortars, grenade launchers, small firearms used. One DPR soldier was killed.

Almost nothing is written about it - but during this "armistice" the funerals of DPR soldiers are held almost every second day ... Yesterday there was a funeral of an officer, who was killed three days ago in the Avdeevskaya industrial zone, Alexander Zhizhka. He was just appointed platoon commander after the death of the officer who held this post ... Alexander had a wife and daughter ... He was buried with honors, as he should be... (opolchenie VK post, with photos by Alexander Khodakovsky).

18 Apr. Normandy-4 leaders had a phone conversation, with another call to follow Minsk agreements, implement all-for-all prisoners exchange. Joint press-release was issued (Poroshenko);(Kremlin).

14 Apr. Zakharchenko: We expect another round of attacks (lit. 'sharpening') in the very near future. Let's put it like that, softly. Our intelligence reports that the opposite side is fully prepared to move to full-scale combat operations.

DPR: In the past week, 380 violations, 2672 banned shells and mortar rounds fired by Ukraine, 27 houses wer damaged or destroyed. (Russ.)(Engl). Ombudsman: 10 DPR soldiers were killed, 12 people ( 2 civilian women, 2 civilian men, 8 soldiers) were wounded.

LPR: in the past week, 25 violations, 464 banned shells and mortar shells fired by Ukraine. 1 civilian was wounded, 3 houses damaged.

13 Apr. Ukrainian branch of the Russian Alfa Bank (wiki): :Alfa-Bank Ukraine has nothing to do with the placement of advertising with images of ORDLO militants and sharply condemns the dirty provocations that unidentified persons resort to in an attempt to undermine the credibility of the international bank in Ukraine. Alfa-Bank was one of the first international banks to stop working in the occupied territories in full accordance with the legislation of Ukraine: both in the Crimea and in the Donbas. Strelkov/patriotic opposition: this is a cause of serious concern... Alpha bank structures are very close to the authorities... It is symptomatic that it appears shortly after (Sec. State) Tillerson visit to Moscow.

9 Apr. HUGE crater, 10 m. diameter and 3 m deep, from Ukrainian shelling by Uragan MLRS hitting 300 m short of Dzerzhinkloe settlement.

8 Apr. One DPR soldier was killed and 1 wounded today; two civilian women wounded yesterday in Donetsk.

7 Apr. DPR MOD weekly report (Russ.), (Engl). 277 violations by Ukraine, 2,292 shells and mortar shells banned by Minsk agreements fired (despite ceasefire agreement to start on 1 Apr.) 36 houses were damaged Reservists called for training. there are 27 thousand reservists in total.

DPR ombudsman: 4 soldiers and 1 civilian was killed, 21 people (7 civilian women, 4 civilian men, and 10 soldiers) were wounded (ombudsman figures are different, and typically higher, than MOD).

LPR MOD weekly report (Engl.) (Russ.-video). 82 shells and mortar shells fired. 1 soldier was wounded.

Third year anniversary of DPR declaring independence; historic photos videos -Cassad.

6 Apr. DPR MoD: reservists with military experience will be given weapons to keep.

DPR. It is supposed to be ceasefire, however 55 violations by Ukraine incidents were reported, including mortars and tank fire in Petrovskii, Kirovskii regions of Donetsk. One house was damaged.

European parliament voted for visa-free regime with Ukraine-- Poroshenko celebration video.

Remarks of Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch at the 2017 Kyiv Security Forum.

2 Apr. According to DPR MOD report, Ukraine used white phosphorous munitions (video).

1 Apr. Repair crews working at Donetsk water filtering station came under Ukrainian fire from 120 mm mortars. Is is said that Russian JCCC representatives are at the station, and evacuation of personnel is under way.

In the past day, 1 DPR soldier was killed and 1 wounded. 8 violations were reported after midnight when a new ceasefire was supposed to start. (Russ.), (Engl.) 30 Mar. Another ceasefire agreed from Apr. 1, prior to approaching Easter. Poroshenko: I gave all the necessary instructions to the main headquarters and the MOD.

Basurin: prior to ceasefire, security situation sharply deteriorated. In the past day, 1 DPR soldier was wounded. 18 houses were damaged. (Russ.)(Engl). Later report: 2 civilians in Yasinovataya were killed by Ukrainian shelling (Engl). 90 years old woman suffered shrapnel wounds in Petrovskiy district of Donetsk.

Video report: a house on Sako and Vantseti street , Donetsk (map) was hit by Ukrainian shelling from Peski around midnight, civilian woman was killed.

Videos

More videos on talk page

Photos

Aftermaths of Ukrainian shelling of the village Zheltoe (Yellow), LPR, 29 Nov. 2016 lug-info.

Sources

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).

OSCE

Official Ukrainian sources

Ukrainian media

DPR and LPR

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

Agreements

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
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

Documenting Incidents, Human Rights violations

Analysis

Blaming Ukraine

Gennady Korban (Kolomoiskii team) "ATO operation handling was a failure" ru.tsn.ua 'Korban made statements about corruption [...] and failed ATO handling' . Previously, criticized using heavy weapons in Donbass and suggested that at most police action is appropriate.

Blaming Russia

  • '(...) Lies about Ukraine', -Boris Nemtsov, Leonid Martyniuk-blames Russian Government (based on inaccurate or later reversed statements made at the official level).

Blaming the USA

  • Paul Craig Roberts ’ Address to the International Conference on the European/Russian Crisis Created by Washington', June 19, 2015. ...' Wolfowitz Doctrine...The gullibility of the public has enabled Washington to establish the foundation for a new Cold War...' ' "Washington doesn’t want partners. Washington wants vassals" ' 'European governments and, of course, the lapdog UK government, are complicit in this implicit declaration of war against Russia and China. If it comes to war, Europeans will pay the ultimate price for the treason of their leaders [...] as Europe will cease to exist'.

Odessa news

26.4.2016 'Maidan' activists protesting against city mayor Trukhanov, erecting light barricades at the city administration building, were dispersed by unknown activists armed with wooden sticks and pepper spray, several protesters were injured (photos, videos in the report).

With May 2 anniversary approaching, situation remain tense. Nationalists are making threats aimed at city administration. Regional governor Saakashvilli asked Poroshenko to deploy national guards to the city for the early days in May, explaining that those were tragic events which still resonate with many people, while those responsible were not brought to justice; and that he feels extra guards are really needed. It appeared that the request was granted, but than contradicting reports appeared.


15.1.2016 Maria Gaidar became assistant head of Odessa regional administration (Saakashvilli is the head)

6.1.2016 The subsistence minimum (this is known as poverty level in the West) per odessite in 2016 is as follows: from January 1 - 1330 hryvnia per month (that is 55 USD at this time) , from May 1 - 1399 hryvnia, from December 1 - 1496 hryvnia 1 TV, Odessa.

27.8 DPR all-for all prisoners exchange list includes 63 anti-maidan activists arrested or charged after May 2 events.

19.7 Saakasvilli clashed with Filatov, Kolomoiskii ally. Clash has to do with elections in Chernigov where another Kolomoiskii ally Korban is running. Saakashvilli is said to come to support opposing candidate Berezenko, his main opponent, but gave a different reason for the visit; that ended in verbal and almost physical clash with Filatov (video), and a court case threatened by Filatov.

17.7.2015 Maria Gaidar appointed vice-governor responsible for social policy. She is a daughter of late Yegor Gaidar (a reformer, acting prime minister of Russia in the second half of 1992). Indicated that her priority will be to show residents that regional authorities care about them. tAfter showing reluctance to persistent journalist questions on who Ukraine is fighting with, eventually provided] politically correct answer telling that Russia attacked Georgia and Ukraine (on her 4th attempt).

30.5.2015 Mikheil Saakashvili appointed governor of Odessa region. Poroshenko stated that knows Saakashvilli for a long time and trusts him. Control of Odessa port which may be used for military aid, Transnistria border, and creating positive image abroad, are seen as some of the reasons behind the appointment. Port control and other economic matters placed Saakashvilli on collision course with Kolomoiskii, whose ally was a previous Odessa governor.

Photos/Videos

Debaltsevo Damage to houses, big craters. It is said in the article that sometime UAF intentionally damaged houses by a direct fire.

Uglegorsk: NAF arranged a corridor for civilians (English sub.) Donetsk children Enakievo Gorlovka Nikishino Nikishino (center) Uglegorsk

Ukrainian Agony

December 20, 2015: German freelance journalist Mark Batalmai, who has lived in Donetsk since mid-2014 and worked embedded with the opolchenie, releases his crowdfunded full-length documentary "Ukrainian Agony" in an English-language version (German-language original).

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

Agreements

Resurgent Events?

Since now, December 23 2015, for the (n+1) time unconditional ceasefire is announced, although I do hope that one is the last, there is no warranty. So I'll just keep labels and dates for important but so far resurgent events here.

February 23 update: by the end of January, 2016, lots of shelling incidents are again reported daily. Once again, promises of ceasefire did not materialize.

  • Unconditional Ceasefire in Donbas.
23.12.15 (starting 0:00, Dec 23, 2015, as announced-TASS
(22.7.15)
(12.2.15)
  • Donetsk Airport, Donetsk suburbs shelled by Ukraine
13.2.16;9.2.16; 26.1.16(tank fire);25.1.16;21.1.16; 20.1.16;15.1.16; 13.1.16;31.12.15 (Staromikhailovka); 29.12; 28.12.15 (Zhabichevo); 27.12.15(Petrovskyi) ; 26.12.15(Spartak); 24.12.15 ; 13.12.15 (Dokuchaevsk) .
(Every other day, up until now)
13.2.16;21.1.16; 11/12.1.16 (Engl).; 10.1.16 (1 DPR killed) 9.1.2016; 27.12.15; 24.12.15.
(Similar to the above)
  • Villages near Mariupol shelled by Ukraine
25.1.16 (artillery, from Mariupol);Kominternovo: 21.1.16;31.12.15 29.12.15 ; 24.12.15 + Basurin & OSCE came under sniper fire, 27.12

....

Updates

28.4.16 Detailed discussion of Nuland visit and Minsk progress by a Ukrainian source. Renewed push, with a deadline of having laws in place by the end of May, implementation by the end of summer is noted. IMF loan to Ukraine may be linked to Minsk implementation, as well as adoption of a packet of other required laws. However, so far Poroshenko tactics was to delay implementation hoping that time is on the side of Ukraine, and such an approach may last forever.

25.3.16 Foreign Minister Steinmeier in Moscow: "We need Russia to help resolve conflicts". Highlights insufficient progress implementing Minsk-2.

27.1.16 Constitutional amendments: Russia's position in Minsk talks:

  • the vote on the Constitution of Ukraine should be tightly linked to the simultaneous adoption of the amendments to Articles 1 and 10 of the law on the special status of Donbass by giving special status of a permanent framework according to "Steinmeier formula";
  • revision of the amendments to the law on the special status should be agreed in the contact group;
  • A legal formula has to be found that guarantees that paragraph 18 of the transitional provisions of the Constitution will refer to the current wording of articles 2-9 of the law on the special status and to new, agreed by the contact group, wording of Articles 1 and 10;
  • This formula should be fixed (закрепить (Rus) = lit. 'fix, make firm'; here 'used'/'entered') in the Constitution of Ukraine;
  • it is also necessary to legislate in the Constitution of Ukraine, that the powers of those representatives elected in Donbass elections under a separate law will not be discontinued in 2017, as is envisaged in the constitutional reform for the rest of Ukraine

Ukraine Contact Group notes "good exchange of views" — OSCE official, TASS-English

11.1. 2016 Boris Gryzlov visited Kiev. Next trilateral group meeting is on 13.1.2016 in Minsk.

Normandy four agreed to extend Minsk agreements into the year of 2016, TASS, Dec. 30, 2015

24.12.2015 Kuchma fools around trying to reinterpret Minsk agreements, demanding border control and in effect DPR/LPR disarmament prior to elections. This is not what was agreed (and could not possibly be agreed the way he tries to put it now, with Novorossia advancing militarily at the time of the agreement). Dirty games now, and so not surprisingly no progress...

18.11.2015 Ukraine did not show up for a contact group meeting where a law on special elections in Donbas was to be discussed. Previously, it was reported that sides could not reach an agreement. According to Pushilin, agenda included a ban for Ukrainian political parties to participate in local elections in Donbas, mechanism of participation for temporary displaced persons, and amnesty law.

15.3 Minsk 3 ? It is rumored that part of Ukrainian leadership is seeking a compromise and another Minsk meeting. Maybe an info release merely testing waters; but the essence of compromise is said to be a special mode to local government which covers the entire territory of the Lugansk and Donetsk regions (including those controlled by Ukraine), but these areas will be led by the people agreed as Kiev and Moscow, and the other members of the Minsk process (Germany and France). It is said that a similar proposal was made a year ago after a meeting involving Kuchma, Medvedchuk, and DPR, but Poroshenko refused to consider it and started the ATO instead. Ukrainian media claim that the plan is actually coming from "representatives of Moscow".

Kremlin 'melancholically denied' (Cassad) re-interpretations/free interpretations of Minsk TASS

12.6.15 Poroshenko expects to submit de-centralization bill to Rada by the end of parliamentary session in July

other constitutional changes proposed by the sides: see news entry for 9.6.15 above

10.6.15 Kuchma: Russia insists on including Novorosiia representatives into tripartite liaison group, Normandy format ; but his is not acceptable to us; they are included as consultants.

17-19.03 Russia called for a UNSC closed door meeting to discuss Ukraine breaking Minsk 2 agreements. Later Lavrov criticized the US position, and indicated further diplomatic moves and planned meetings in in Normandy format

16.03 Special status law requires elections based on laws of Ukraine prior to such special status. LPR/DPR were not consulted about this (although that is required in Minsk 2 agreements). With leaders of LPR/DPR and Soviets recently elected already, another elections will be problematic. There were no local elections though, may be local elections can be arranged in a way acceptable to both sides.

14.03 Poroshenko introduced special status law for Rada consideration -TASS quoting Rada site.

13.03 Zakharchenko and Plotniskii write to Hollande and Merkel about Ukraine not fulfilling its obligations: not following schedule on heavy weapons withdrawal; (most importantly) Rada has not started discussing special status for Donetsk, Lugansk regions--that work is supposed to finish by 14 March; continued economic blockade.

27.02 UNSC meeting on Ukraine started with OSCE report, highlighting state of affairs and challenges OSCE faces. Overall partial calming of warfare in the past several days noted. Neither side was willing to provide details of heavy weapons they posses, or their exact destination after proposed withdrawal. Technology (e.g. satellite), experts, and procedures need to be upgraded for OSCE to fulfill its required mission (video of OSCE presentation in Russian translation is here, other languages not found at this time)

abc news report dailystar SBS
Churkin gives a brief account of the UNSC closed door meeting TASS-English

24.02 FM meeting in Normandy format ended in Paris; heavy weapons withdrawal, verification, Debaltsevo were discussed, nothing new signed. Germany has concerns with implementation.

19.02 Poroshenko has held a phone conversation in the Normandy format, told them "not to pretend that the events in Debaltseve meet the Minsk agreements". He has also urged to elaborate clear guarantees for the possible attempts of violating the given agreements in the future. (Debaltsevo situation was known in Minsk--indeed he should not be pretending).

18.02 Poroshenko plans to ask for UN peacekeepers

17.02 UN SC unanimously approved a resolution supporting Minsk agreements. (Yet, testy rhetoric noted by Churkin)

14.02 Russia introduced UN SC resolution approving Minsk agreements of February 12. So far, English speaking world, UK and USA, did not clearly expressed their positions, and it may give an indication. So far, it was along the lines that Russia has to deliver, and may be further sanctioned otherwise, while Ukraine has nothing to deliver, and will not be sanctioned for failures. Russian officials called for a change of such approach, taking a position that the conflict is internally Ukrainian and Russia is not a participant (example). While Russian media are making presentations indicating that it is the USA who is a participant, in Kiev overlord capacity (example).

12.02 Two documents were agreed:

  • on measures on implementing Minsk protocol (English language PDF here). Ceasefire starting on February 15; separation of heavy weapons (from actual line for Ukraine, and from September 19 line for Novorossia; this enlarges separation), starting in 2 days from ceasefire, finishing in 14 days. All for all prisoners exchange, to finish in 5 days from separation begins. Time limits are given for all major steps. Return of border control to Ukraine is agreed to occur after local elections and constitutional reform (taking interests of breakaway regions into account)
  • declaration of support of Ukrainian peace settlement. This includes support and control of implementation.

10.02 Contact Group agrees (a plan of) heavy troops withdrawal, ceasefire regime -TASS

It may be the case that sides do not make binding obligations, but approve and support listed measures (language is a bit vague, if something is broken later, or sides do not agree whether later vague steps actually occurred, not clear exactly what will follow)

Plotniskii, Zakharchenko press statement (English subs)

Still no direct contact between official Kiev and Novorossia. -(Mentioned by Putin in his press statement as one of the reasons negotiations took so long, had to go back and forth with Trilateral Group).

08.02 After telephone conference today, it is said that Normandy four to meet in Minsk on 11.02 if some positions will be resolved prior to that. Details of positions not explained. (Lukashenko talked to both Putin and Poroshenko about this and is happy and keen for them to come to Minsk)

06.02 Hollande-Merkel-Putin talks are finished in Moscow, it is said that a Normandy format document is being prepared based on meetings in Kiev and Moscow. Phone conference call in Normandy format expected on Sunday. (--Putin spokesman Peskov, TASS).) Putin off to Sochi, meets Lukashenko and rests; Hollande and Merkel also departing Moscow.

Petro Poroshenko, Angela Merkel and Francois Hollande insist on the immediate and unconditional ceasefire in the Donbas

Plotniskii and Zakharchenko press conference -explains Republics position why it is not their fault that latest Minsk meeting did not succeed (English subs).

Victor Baloga, Governor of trans-Carpathian region of Ukraine, proposes a referendum on whether to continue war or separate from the rebel regions. Also, Gennady Korban, assistant Governor, Dnepropetrovsk, proposes to choose between war and an agreement.

Maps

20.02.2015 Front line, and heavy weapons withdrawal zones, black 25 km (artillery), green 35 km (MLRS), pink 70 km (heavy MLRS and Tochka U). Zones were agreed by Joint Center for Control and Coordination (JCCC). As of 24.02, only DPR and LPR pulling heavy weapons. (source)
18.02 Debaltsevo Cauldron. Debaltsevo is controlled by NAF. Blue arrows: Ukrainian armored vehicles escape route. (Click image for earlier versions)
02.02.2015 ATO map (Ukraine) .

Dragon-First maps; Kot Ivanov .

Casualties

Total

8.7.15 Zakharchenko, at a a joint LPR/DPR press conference: "In 2015, 1212 people were killed, including 25 children under the age of 18 years ". During the conflict in 2014, 3864 DPR peeople died , including 522 women and 65 children. "That is more than 5000 of our people were killed just because they are residents of Donbass." (unclear is this civilian deaths or total deaths--probably total). More than 6,200 people, including women, children and the elderly were seriously injured and became disabled for life were . More than two thousand DPR inhabitants are missing.

14.8.15 From the start of hostilities, 5061 people were killed, among them 4295 men and 766 women, according to the Office of the Commissioner for Human Rights in DPR; and according to the Center for Emergency Medical Aid, 6100 were wounded Dan-news, 14.8.15. The figure is close to the one given by Zakharchenko in July (he had a higher number of 5076, so a small discrepancy here)

Children killed

3.12.15 DPR ombudsman: during the conflict, almost 80 children were killed in Donbass, Rossiiskaia Gazeta, 3.12.2015. According to DPR ombudsman Yana Chepikova, uring the hostilities, 78 children were killed in DPR, 313 were injured, 35 of them seriously injured. In LPR, 30 children were killed according to data available.

Military Casualties

19.02 Zakharchenko: Ukrainian losses in Debaltsevo cauldron may be up to 3 -3.5 thousand killed. There are plans to release or exchange those taken prisoners.

16.02 UAF: estimated 60 killed; NAF 2 killed, 21 wounded (source).

14.02 for the day and up to the ceasefire started: UAF lost 111 killed, NAF lost 8 killed, 28 wounded -Basurn

13.02 up to 100 UAF killed Basurin, DPR

12.02 Day + night, UAF lost 169 killed (links in the news section)

08.02 LPR commander Maxim Martakov, a military policeman, and 6 fighters were killed under Chernukhino. They provided corridor for civilians. 11 UAF soldiers were killed, 29 wounded (Basurin)

04.02.15 UAF losses: 21 killed

03.02.15 UAF losses estimated at 79 killed.

02.02.15 UAF losses estimated at 130 killed.

  • Totals. In 29 days, up to ceasefire starting, 2760 UAF killed, 60 taken prisoners -Basurn
In 22 days since fighting restarted, 2056 UAF killed (Basurin)
17 Jan.-3 Feb. UAF losses estimated at 1738 killed, 52 taken prisoners (Basurin, DPR).

Civilian Casualties

According to the Head of the DNI, the year the war seriously injured for life became disabled more than 6,200 people, including women, children and the elderly. More than two thousand inhabitants DNI missing. 08.02 Many instances of shelling of Donetsk with MLRS (including Uragans), and artillery. One very powerful explosion (videos available) was reported as well. Later it was said that a chemical plant producing paints and dry mixes in Donetsk was hit by a heavy artillery shell (DPR did not confirm that it was ammunition plant); preliminary information is that nobody was killed in that explosion.

07.02 After ceasefire ended on 6.02, Ukraine attempted an attack on the whole front line; the attack was repelled. 6 civilians were killed, 15 wounded in Donetsk due to shelling by Ukraine from the North-West.

05.02. Shelling by Ukraine had 7 civilians killed, 44 wounded, most of them in Donetsk. Schools, hospitals, kindergartens hit. Ukraine is using Smerch MLRS; range is 80 km; a full salvo covers an area of 8 football fields.

04.02 Donetsk hospital shelled, 5 killed, 5 wounded. Civilian objects destroyed: Donetsk 17, Makeevka 28, Gorlovka 2

02.02.15 16 killed, 34 wounded in DPR and LPR combined. Civilian areas hit by MLRS, Makeevka and Donetsk, (13), (14) on opolchenie map, 02.02.2015

22.01 Donetsk bus shelled at least 8 killed, 13 injured

Residents react abusively to UAF 'cyborg' officer captured earlier at the Airport and brought to the scene

13.01 Volnovakha bus: 12 killed, 18 wounded (talk). 24.01 Mariupol market shelling: 30 killed, 83 injured (talk) .

  • Totals. Latest official UN figure: 224 civilians killed and 545 wounded in the three weeks leading up to 1 February. According to the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), the overall death toll now exceeds 5,358 people, with another 12,235 wounded since mid-April last year (Deaths here are likely certified, and mostly civilian).

Gorlovka

In 6 months ending July 2015, 164 civilians were killed, including 16 children; 501 were wounded, including 42 are children DAN news, quoting city administration data,31 July 2015.

UNHCHR

  • Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, "Accountability for killings in Ukraine from January 2014 to May 2016" -report. Blames both sides, but Western media mostly highlightes alleged crimes by rebels. While large number of civilian shelling victims are reported as if it is not known who is predominantly to blame. Significant number of other cases are likely not fully investigated or included in the report.
"Ukraine crisis: Impunity 'pervasive' in east, says UN" , BBC, 14 July 2016 (highlights one case in rebel controlled Luhansk, where some Cossacks were accused of a crime)

Military Hardware Lost

23.02 Zakharchenko: 'Poroshenko is our main ally'. In 5 days at Debaltsevo, 170 UAF tanks were captured or destroyed; most of them can be repaired. Also, 50 artillery pieces; they did not even count mortars. Ammunition, still move it out by railroad wagon-loads.

19.02 In Debaltsevo, opolchenie captured 265 pieces of UAF military equipment. 28 tanks, 63 BMP/BTR, 145 vehicles, 16 anti-aircraft guns, 13 artillery and mortar pieces were found in good condition and have been adopted by the DPR army. Also captured: about 1000 firearms, 39 ammunition storages and 2 railroad card with ammunition -Basurin

14.02 4 Grads launchers and ammunition seized by NAF near Debaltsevo -Basurn

03.02.15 Two UAF SU 25 were shot down (near Commisarovka and Chernukhino; one pilot bailed out). Also a drone shot down near Irvino

02-03.02.15 UAF lost 5 tanks, 1 BMP, 11 artillery pieces, one plane (and/or one Tochka U)

  • Totals: for 29 days, up to ceasefire: UAF lost 3 airplanes, 1 helicopter, 205 tanks, 182 BMP, BTR, MTLB, 208 field artillery guns, 124 vehicles -Basurn
for 22 days since fighting restarted: UAF lost 3 planes, 1 helicopter, 168 tanks, 133 BMP/BTR, 124 artillery pieces, 94 vehicles
17 Jan.-3 Feb. UAF lost 3 planes, 1 helicopter, 146 tanks, 114 BMP/BTR, 91 artillery pieces, 64 vehicles

Banned Weapons Use

Ukrainian tanks in residential area, Spartak-Peski, Spring-Summer 2015. Supposed to be free from heavy weapons (according to weapons withdrawal maps); but a long-running flash point in the conflict

There were numerous reports on phosphorus bomb use, with consistent photo and video footage, witness reports, burns consistent with such weapons use, etc. Many articles on Rusvesna on this topic. One of them here, for example, contain a photo of an explosion, and video, allegedly of nationalist battalion fighters, based on colors/regalia, discussing and accepting that such munitions were used by Ukraine (dated 13.02.2015 ). There were numerous other such incidents. The latest phosphorous munition report is by DoNI press, [1], translated at Fort Russ, Apr. 24, 2016, from Zaitsevo.

02.02.15 Report on phosphorous ammunition used against civilians by Ukraine-burns can be seen.

More photos, sky alight in Marinka (Donetsk suburb), Aug. 1, 2014

Cluster munitions

04.02.15 UAF shelled Telmanovo from Mirnoe by Smerch MLRS, civilian houses destroyed

03.02.15 Luhansk and Donetsk: Smerch, heavy MLSRS with cluster munitions used by Ukraine.

28.01.15 OSCE confirms (03.02.15 report) that cluster Smerch munitions were used against Artemivskyi district of Luhansk, shelling was from NNW. (Shelling done by Ukraine).

Economy

  • Deutsche Wirtschafts Nachrichten: "The IMF has pumped billions in recent months into the Ukrainian financial system to stabilize the country's banks. Approximately $ 1.8 billion were going to the largest financial institution Private Bank, which is controlled by the oligarch Igor Kolomoiski. But instead of investing the money into the Ukrainian economy, Kolomoiski has managed to channel the emergency loans through a network of offshore companies abroad". [1] Ukrainian anti-corruption project "Our Money" ('Наші гроші' (ukr) = "Nashi Groshi") is quoted as offering an explanation of the scheme, involving a 'purchase' of foreign goods which were never delivered, using a credit from Private Bank, and the payment deposited to accounts in off-shore branches of the Privat Bank. [2]
  • Ukrainian $18 bln debt (held in bonds) will receive a 20% 'haircut'. However, between 2021 and 2040 investors will receive up to 40 per cent of the value of Ukraine’s annual economic growth above 4 per cent, although total payments will be capped at 1 per cent for the first four years. [3] [4] Ukrainian GDP is 177.4 billion USD ‎(2013) -by google search. It went down quite a lot in 2014; but the IMF projection is 134 bln USD in 2020. One percent of that in growth is 1.3 bln; such amount may be paid to investors for 20 years bringing 26 bln USD. Write-off amount is about 3.6 bln USD. This wonderful deal is called a 'win-win' by Ukrainian finance minister and the Guardian [5]. Franklin Templeton is one of the largest investors involved. Russia has 3 bln USD in Ukrainian debt and is not participating in the deal.(Vasili Muravitskii/Cassad brought up this matter).

Sources

News Sources

Official Donetsk People Republic (DPR) news dan-news.info.
Oplot TV-Donetsk Live now , youtube channel vk Oplot TV
First Republican Channel-DPR youtube vk ('official channel of DPR', created in April 2014, and unofficially broadcasting some material online; possibly re-broadcasting Russia 24 in their vacant slots.
Lugansk People Republic (LPR) news: LPR Sovet (legislature) site, news, luganskallnews.ru, news, lug-info.com
Rada; President.

English-language sources

Documentaries

Opinion Polls

13,3% would vote for the party "Block of Petro Poroshenko"
12,8% - for the All-Ukrainian Union "Fatherland" (Yulia Timosenko)
6,8% - for the party "Union Samopomich" (Sadovyi)
5,8% - for the Radical Party of Oleg Lyashko,
4,1% - for the party "Opposition block" (Boyko) --formerly 'Party of Regions'-Yanukovich
3,1% - for the party "Civil position"
3,0% - for the party "Right Sector"
----
3,2% - have crossed all the parties /spoiled bulletin
14,3% - chose not to vote,
23,5% - hard to choose,
2,6% - refusal
Source: Socio-Political Situation In Ukraine: July 2015. Report also have opinions on various peace/Russia issues, by region (English).
How Do The Attitude Of Ukrainians To Russia And Russians To Ukraine Has Changed
  • In DPR/LPR, polling is done by Center for Sociological Study 'Special Status' (Центр социологических исследований «Особый статус» -russ.) Here is their opening presentation. Poll results are published by news sources.
DPR poll conducted in the beginning of August in 19 DPR towns, 5900 people took part, 5% statistical error
43 % for DPR to join the Russian Federation (33.8% 3 months ago)
17 % for DPR to be independent ('sovereign') (42.8 % 3 months ago)
18 % for the 'creation of a joint state' (unclear what that would be exactly- some sort of autonomy aligned with Russia)
11 % ('not more than') for DPR as a part of Ukraine. 14.9 % see some future with Ukraine following Minsk agreements (18.8 % 3 months ago)

Abbreviations Used

DPR: Donetsk People Republic (prime minister: Alexander Zakharchenko)

LPR: Lugansk People Republic (head: Igor Plotniskii)

JCCC Joint Center for Control and Co-ordination, consists of Ukrainian and Russian military officers,- tries to mediate to have ceasefire implemented.

MLRS: Multiple Launch Rocket System, Grad/Uragan/Smerch. Uragan or Smerch typically have cluster munitions

UAF (=AFU): Ukrainian Armed Forces

NAF (=AFN): Opolchenie, Novorossia Armed Forces

OSCE: Organization for Security and Co‑operation in Europe

RSG: recon and subversion group

SMM: Special Monitoring Mission-OSCE

References

  1. Deutsche Wirtschafts Nachrichten, "Ukrainischer Oligarch bereichert sich an IWF-Krediten", 27.08.15
  2. RT (Russian), "DWN: Коломойский «оприходовал» транш МВФ и скрылся в Америке", 28.08.2015
  3. Financial Times, "Ukraine secures debt deal for war-ravaged economy", 27.8.2015
  4. Finance Ministry of Ukraine, Ukraine and the Ad Hoc Creditors' Committee agree on Indicative Heads of Terms for restructuring of sovereign and sovereign guaranteed Eurobonds, 27.8.2015
  5. The Guardian, Ukraine agrees 'win-win' debt restructuring deal, 27.8.2015