Ukraine news/Archive/2018-02

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28 Feb. Contact group agreed on (yet another) "absolute truce" from March 5 (LPR-Deynego).

27 Feb. LPR: UAF fired 122 mm artillery shells on LPR positions in the area of Svetlodarsk

Disturbances near Rada building in Kiev are reported. Apparently it started as a conflict between two groups of protesters, who then either joined forces, or were joined by some provocateurs, to attack the police. 9 people were arrested, 8 police officers were injured. Irina Gerashchenko stated that among those who threw stones at the police and participated in the riots were Rada deputies (Kiev police chief was unable to confirm or deny that, and said that they will examine video evidence). Video.

Activists of Saakashvili's party, Movement of new forces (Рух нових сил) published a video claiming that Prosecutor General of Ukraine Yuriy Lutsenko attacked activists camped outside of his house, threatened them with physical violence, used an axe to damage a generator, took and threw away an activist's cell phone when he tried to call. An eyewitness testimony of how the Attorney General Lutsenko plunged with an ax at activists near his home.

26 Feb. DPR MOD/Basurin report shows increased shelling, heavy weapons use by UAF (Rus.)(Eng.) Volvo center in Donetsk fired on with twenty 120 mm mortar shells, 4 houses damaged and a civilian 'Gazel' car destroyed in Dokuchaevsk.

25 Feb. Ten 120 mm mortar shells were fired by UAF on Zaitsevo, near Gorlovka. Houses were damaged (report and videos)

OSCE evacuates from Gorlovka? -User dashboard video and on-video comment with such claim.

In the past day, 1 DPR soldier was killed by Ukrainian shelling.

24 Feb. Russian FM press office: Having signed the (Reintegration of Donbass) law, P.Poroshenko de-facto crossed out the Minsk agreements and untied the hands of the "war party".

23 Feb. Basurin: Marked ambulance car was hit by Ukrainian PTUR, killing 3 people, a wounded DPR soldier, a medic and the driver (burned-down ambulance on video). Basurin accused UAF of a war crime. Also tells that the Ukrainian side tried to conceal this event in the news release; but accidentally released details on a planned Ukrainian attack (giving the name of the unit as the 'tactical group Mospino).

DPR ombudsman: in the past week (as of 22 Feb.), 4 DPR soldiers were killed, 2 soldiers wounded.

On the Soviet Red Army day, a parade in Krivoy Rog, Ukraine with some Red Army flags, Red Guards emblems (+lots of Ukrainian flags). This is despite the date no longer officially celebrated in Ukraine, with OUN day replacing.

22 Feb. Conflicting signals from Kiev, with an impression of preparing for warfare to take Donbass back by force, while claiming to be committed to 'peaceful settlement of the problem of the liberation of the occupied territories' (presumably, by deploying 'peacekeepers' and receiving Western 'defensive weapons', in order to 'liberate' the rest of Donbass, with no mentioning of Minsk, or the rebel L/DPR republics, involved in Minsk too although indirectly).

21 Feb. OSCE's Alexander Hug in Donetsk calls on both sides to stop the fighting, for the sake of civilians on both sides longing and crying for peace.

20 Feb. Poroshenko signed so called 're-integration of Donbass' law; instructed the Ministry of Defense and the General Staff to submit proposals on changing the format of the ATO by April 1, with a talk about 'the right to self-defense'. (It is not entirely clear what that means in practice, but is taken as a sign of escalation).

18 Feb. Saakashvili- organized anti-Poroshenko march, and an anti-Russian nazi pogrom in Kiev.

17 Feb. LPR: Unidentified persons attempted to sabotage the territory of the State Television and Radio Company (GTRK) and to damage the civilian emergency alert system, 'which may indicate the preparation of Ukrainian Armed Forces for the resumption of hostilities' (report and video), (another video, OSCE on the scene).

Neo-Nazis from C14 group staged a pogrom in the building of the Russian cultural center Rossotrudnichestvo in Kiev. At that time, there were children inside rehearsing a play "The Inspector General" (Rusvesna)(strana.ua).

16 Feb. Alexander Hug in a press conference from Lugansk tells of continued ceasefire violations, banned weapons near separation line, Ukrainian soldiers advancing and seen in Novoalexandroovka, etc; calls on the sides to implement their entirely unambiguous obligations under Minsk agreements. (With passion--but with little change on the ground, for years).

DPR ombudsman: in the past week, 1 DPR soldier was killed, 4 people (3 soldiers and a civilian man) were wounded.

12 Feb. Saakashvilli is detained in a Kiev restaurant (report and videos), said to be put on board of a plane to Poland.

10 Feb. DPR correspondent 'Mag' reports frequent, several times per week, flights of 'Global Hawk' RQ-4B , said to be 'along the front line and around Crimea'; suspects that a serious Ukrainian attack is in the works.

9 Feb. DPR ombudsman: in the past week, 2 DPR soldiers were wounded, no deaths reported. From 1 Jan. to 8 Feb., 8 people were killed (7 soldiers and 1 civilian), 31 were wounded (23 soldiers, 5 civilian men, 3 civilian women).

Deputy Foreign Minister of the Russian Federation Grigory Karasin opposes the inclusion of the US in the "Normandy format" (related discussion of how Volker line is not helpful).

8 Feb. Basurin: (Rus.)(Eng.)A group of officers from the US Armed Forces, accompanied by representatives of the UAF General Staff, arrived to the so-called ATO zone to hold an inspection. Currently, brigades of the UAF, which are part of the Donetsk operational-tactical group, are being inspected. The main purpose of this inspection is to check the readiness of the UAF formations to conduct offensive operations. Besides, Western experts are interested in the problem of the Ukrainian military command's plundering funds allocated by US special services (as claimed). At LPR press briefing, Feb 7, it was stated that US Army delegation headed by Defense Attaché Wofford visits Ukraine troops’ outposts in Donbas and that it may lead to deterioration of security situation.

5 Feb. Briefing by Basurin, where he says that UAF plans an offensive along the whole separation line, to overrun republics defenses and to advance all the way to the border with Russia; demonstrates maps of presumed attacks, reports that heavy equipment is moved away from storage areas, shows evidence of resent advanced payments and Ukrainian social media posts supporting his claim ("Ukrainian, rejoice, the war will end soon", by Maxim Pashkevich, with a document said to describe UAF general staff plan to overrun rebel republics). Appeals to the world, tells that plans to counter the offensive are made.

1 Feb. Assassination attempt on DPR defense minister Vladimir Kononov from a tripod-mounted RPG-26 is reported, Ukraine blamed. No-one was hurt.

UAF shelled Dokuchaevsk oil refinery, there are damages to the refinery equipment and a residential house (quoting DPR representative in JCCC Yakubovich).