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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

21 Jun. The Syrian foreign minister al-Moallem is visiting North Korea after he had stayed in China for a five-day visit.

Firat News Agency publishes "confessions" by captured Turkish intelligence agents that they carried out terror attacks, abductions and other crimes while posing as SDF soldiers, with the goal to fuel conflict between Arabs and Kurds in Rojava.

After 45 days of trying to conquer the hill town of Kabani from the Idlib "rebels", the SAA gives up for the moment and deploys its elite forces to a different front.

20 Jun. Iranian media reports that US and Saudi efforts to convince tribes in Rojava to separate from Syria have failed.

19 Jun. Al-Ja'afari delivers an update to the UNSC about the situation in Idlib and demands that they take their resolutions "against terrorism" seriously. He specifically points out the role of Turkey in supporting the various gangs of militants in the area.

13 Jun. According to press reports, Iraqi officials complain that the US is refusing to hand over 40 to 50 ISIS commanders of Iraqi origin they/the SDF have captured in the endgame in al-Baghouz.

9 Jun. A funeral ceremony for al-Sarout in the Turkish border town Reyhanli sparks a controversy in Turkish society over the relationship of the state to radical jihadis.

8 Jun. In fights in northern Hama the SAA kills prominent Jihadist leader al-Sarout to the great mourning of the "western" press.

7 Jun. Offensive by the rebels, Idlib-Hama, is reported (1,2).

31 May. According to Al Masdar, both US forces and the SDF attack "Syrian government ferries" carrying oil from the eastern banks across the Euphrates.

Also according to Al Masdar, a Turkish observation post came under cross-fire during fights between the SAA and "rebels" in northern Hama.

28 May. Around 50 activists disrupt the Berlin annual shareholder meeting of Germany's largest weapons manufacturer Rheinmetall and demand a stop of weapon exports to Turkey because of that country's attacks on Rojava. Among many other war machines, the company produces the Leopard II tank. Its' Italian subsidiary RWM Italia continued selling weapons to Saudi Arabia despite a German export ban to Saudi

YouTube bans the ANNA News channel for unspecified "community guidelines violations". A back-up channel is availabe.

26 May. The SAA has reversed the gains of the HTS counter-offensive, reinforced their troops and resumed the northern Hama operation.

22 May. A group of about 700 jihadists starts a counter-offensive in northern Hama and takes several places back from the SAA.

18 May. While the "European Song Contest" is going on in Tel Aviv, Israel attacks Syrian territory with drones and missiles for the second consecutive day.

16 May. Russian reconciliation center said that militants plan to stage a provocation in Idlib to accuse Russian forces of using chemical weapons (Eng.), (Rus).

10 May. Ziad Fadel summarizes the first couple of days of the SAA offensive in northern Hama.

7 May. 'A powerful strike' by the Russian aerospace forces and Syrian government forces on Idlib-based militants is reported, countering their reported preparations for an attack. north of Hama. From May 6, SAA conducts a military operation in north Hama; the settlements of Janabar, Al-Bana and Tel-Osman came under government forces control.

6 May. Russian airbase in Kmeimim was attacked twice with unguided rockets salvos from the area near Zavia settlement in Idlib, with fire correction by drones. It is reported that attacks were repelled with no casualties or damage, and that attackers positions were destroyed. There has been 12 earlier repelled attacks since early April, 8 of those with improvised drone munitions, other attacks with MLRS.

28 Apr. publishes the second, concluding part of their detailed interview with Sharmine Narwani.

26 Apr. In recent days militants in the south-western part of the Idlib pocket have fired Grad missiles at targets in Latakia province including the Russian Hmeimin base but also civilian suburbs. Today the Russian Airforce replies with massive bombardments of where the missiles were coming from.

25 Apr. The 12th round of the so-called Astana Meetings takes place in the Kazakh capital - now renamed Nursultan after the currently resigned long-time president's first name - with delegations from Turkey, Russia, Iran, Syria and the UN.

On Chinese invitation, Syria attents the global summit of the Belt and Road Initiative in Beijing.

22 Apr. SANA reports that in the last month, Russian and Syrian forces have evacuated around 4,000 civilians from Al Rukhban camp, which is around 10% of those entrapped there due to lacking US cooperation.

21 Apr. The old bridge in Raqqa city is opened after the sustained damage to it has been repaired. publishes part one of a wide-ranging, essential interview with Syria expert and war reporter Sharmine Narwani.

20 Apr. Firat News Agency publishes an interview with a Rojava official about the future of the 11,000 male ISIS fighters and 72,000 family members that are in prison resp. camps after the defeat of the terror cult.

Elijah Magnier reports that Hezbollah leader Nasrallah has told his top commanders that he expects an Israeli surprise war on Lebanon this summer, in which the whole leadership including himself would be targeted for assassination.

19 Apr. A high-level Russian delegation visits Saudi Arabia to discuss Syria with Crown Prince Bin Salman. After that, the delegation heads to Damascus to meet Assad.

17 Apr. After Iranian foreign minster Zarif had a "long" meeting with Assad the day before, he is now in Ankara to brief Erdogan on the results.

16 Apr. Brazil and India reopen their Syrian embassies.

15 Apr. Jenan Moussa publishes an investigative report based on the leaked contents of the smart phone of Tunisian-born German citizen Omaima Abdi, who went to Syria in 2015 to join ISIS, married the most famous German ISIS fighter Denis Cuspert AKA Deso Dogg and is now back in Germany living as if nothing had happened. (in the evening the story is making top news in Germany)

12 Apr. It is reported that differences between "Assad and armed opposition" over composition and nature of the constitutional committee have been narrowed down. The 150-member body would be split equally between representatives chosen by the Syrian government, the Syrian opposition and Syrian civil society, with 50-members each. The Syrian government was not allowed to object to the names of the representatives of the opposition; with the rest of the body, it is said that "Assad's regime has given its consent to all names but four".

7 Apr. The German capital Berlin's district of Kreuzberg - known for its multi-cultural and leftist milieu - starts the first city partnership between a German and a North-Syrian city partnering with the city of Derik, where the Rojava parliament is located. Several other city partnerships are in the planning stages.

4 Apr. The Venezuelan foreign minister visits Assad and Moallem in Damascus.

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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

FEATURE: Venezuela coup attempt 2019

Ukraine News

19 Jun. Dutch prosecutors have announced international arrest warrants and criminal charges against three Russians and a Ukrainian whom they accuse of being part of a chain of Russian military and political command leading to the downing of MH17. Among the four is Igor Strelkov. John Helmer: the subjunctive and conditional tenses, plus Ukrainian Secret Service tapes.

16 Jun. DPR People's Militia Headquarters (PMH) representative: we received information from sources "close to Ukrainian MoD" about planned provocation which involves shelling of positions of 93 UAF brigade in Avdeevka, withdrawn in advance, and civilian infrastructure in nearby area, followed by prepared false reporting blaming DPR. This provocation is aimed to disrupt possible peaceful settlement agreements at the next contact group meeting on June 19. (Rus., Robo-Eng.)

In the evening, Ukraine shelled northern Donetsk (including Spartak and Donetsk airport). 82 and 120 mm mortars, SPG-9, ZU-23 were used, and an anti-tank missile was fired, exploding in the backyard of a house on Grekova St. 111. A summer kitchen in another residential house on Baskirskaya St. was destroyed. Luckily, no casualties are reported (DPR PMH)(Cassad).

According to opolchenie sources (Marina Kharkova and social media comments), DPR forces are under strict orders not to respond and to comply with Minsk agreements on heavy weapons withdrawal. They only respond in exceptional cases after numerous verifications with superiors. In the meantime, Ukrainian forces occupied grey area zones and moved their positions right next to L/DPR. There are quite significant military and civilian casualties as a result.

9 Jun. For the past day, DPR MoD reports (Rus, robo-Eng. Ukrainian shelling by 152 and 122 mm artillery, 120 and 82 mm mortars, BMP guns, grenade launchers, small firearms. Two civilians are wounded, a man 1968 DOB and a woman, 1959 DOB. At least two residential homes are destroyed, and 12 damaged. A 17 years old male is seriously injured, said to be trying to dismantle an unidentified explosive device (report, photos).

6 Jun. Rada voted down removal of heads of FM, MoD and SBU submitted by Zelenskii

5 Jun. Ukraine shelled residential area of Gagarin mine pit, near Gorlovka. In the past day, one DPR soldier was killed and one wounded by Ukrainian shelling. It is said that Ukraine launched an armed drone to attack Islamic holiday prayer gathering in Tekstilshiki, Donetsk, and that drone was shot down; photographs are presented.

Zelenskii is to meet with oligarchs, "one at a time", with a separate meeting on investing in Donbass. He says that Viktor Pinchuk stopped by, "in connection with" Leonid Kuchma, who has been (re) appointed the official Ukrainian negotiator in Minsk, Little progress was achieved with him in his previous informal role at those negotiations; it is unclear whether it will change now. It is noted that Pinchuk is married to Kuchma's daughter. Pinchuk and Kuchma entourages are said to be seen at the president administration offices on 26 May; Kuchma was appointed on 3 June.

4 Jun. It is reported (with photos, video from the scene, and interview with Rashid Bragin, chairman of Muslim community of Donetsk ) that a mosque in Donetsk was shelled today at 7:30 am, on the day of Eid al-Fitr (end of Ramadan) celebration. 4 shells landed in or close to the mosque. That was an hour before the morning prayer. Large number of people were to attend the prayer, coming to Donetsk from nearby places. At the time of the shelling, mosque was being prepared and about 1/3 of expected number were already present, including 10 or so children in the courtyard. Luckily no one was hurt.

(From the horse's mouth'): Zelenskii, in English, at the press conference in Brussels with NATO secretary general.

3 Jun. Eduard Dolinsky: This is the footage of the attack of National Corpus, a political wing of Neo-Nazi military formation battalion Azov, on the office of Ukrainian Jewish Committee in Kharkiv.

2 Jun. DPR MoD: Despite all claims by Zelenskii on peaceful settlement of the conflict, after his visit of the punitive operation zone the shelling by Ukraine considerably increased. Ukrainian military commanders in the 'joint forces operation zone' are totally uncontrolled and obey the old corrupt power. Zelensky as a new commander-in-chief does not command authority of those war criminals. In the last 5 days, victims of deliberate shelling by Ukraine include 7 civilians, 2 of them children.

1 Jun. Civilian man, 1959 DOB is wounded when Ukraine fired 82 mm mortars on Leninskoe settlement

31 May. DPR ombudsman: in the period 24-30 May, 5 DPR soldiers were killed, 5 people (1 soldier, a civilian man, a civilian woman, and 2 children) were wounded. From the start of the year, 80 people were killed (75 of them soldiers) and 81 wounded (58 soldiers).

Malaysian prime minister Mahathir Mohamad calls the investigation into the MH17 downing "politicized" and complains that Malaysia was not allowed to see the black box data.

30 May. Civilian man, 52 years old, and a girl, 7 1/2 are wounded when Ukrainian -fired anti-tank missile landed in their garden (report and video). Luckily their injuries are quite light, but there is a deep hole in the ground left by the missile.

28 May. Pushilin: to stop the war, Zelenskii needs to do something else. He needs to take tough measures against the Ukrainian radicals, but, in his opinion, "Zelenskii has no such opportunities". There has been no contacts between Ukraine and DPR, and no improvement in fulfilling Minsk agreements.

27 May. Ukrainian drone strike on a residential home in Gorlovka is reported, wounding a 70 years old civilian woman.

DPR MoD: Ukrainian 120 mm mortar fire damaged 3 homes in settlements of Golmovsky, Zaitsevo, Dokuchaevsk. DPR MoD also reports on shelling in other areas, and details about Ukrainian RSG group apprehended earlier, said to be with an assistance from an insider.

26 May. FT: Kolomoiskii urges Zelenskii to reject IMF austerity program and default on debt.

25 May. DPR MoD: 20 ceasefire violations, a lot of shelling, including artillery, in the past day. Ukraine fired a hundred 122 mm artillery shells and 72 mortar shells of 120 and 82 caliber on DPR settlements. BMP and small arms fire also reported.

US gives Ukraine two more firefinder/counter-battery radars AN/TPQ-36, bringing the total to 13 firefinder radars since 2014.

Ukrainian provocation in the Kerch straight of 25 Nov. 2018: UN maritime tribunal orders provisional measures (118, p/29) against Russia. Media coverage: 1, 2, 3). Implementation of the ruling is in doubt. Russia did not take part in the hearing, and rejected the findings, stating that procedures are not applicable. A lone dissenting opinion of the Russian judge on the tribunal here.

24 May. DPR ombudsman: in the period 17-23 May, 2 DPR soldiers were killed, 7 were wounded.

23 May. JCCC reports Ukrainian shelling of Donetsk suburbs, mortars, BMP guns, anti-tank missiles, RPG, AGS, SPG, large caliber machine guns and small firearms.

Journo: Volodymyr Oleksandrovych (Zelenskii), will there be negotiations with Russia? Zelenskii: -Ni- (No).

22 May. New Ukrainian presidential administration chief Andrey Bogdan stated that the government is considering to hold national referendum on peace agreements with Russia (; video).

In a recent poll, majority consider ceasefire in Donbass as very important (88,4%) support direct dialogue with Russia (75%) and L/DPR (55,4%), accept concessions to achieve peace (65,3%). Support for all-Ukrainian referendum on status of Donbass territories not controlled by the government is at 49,2%.

20 May. Zelenskii assumed his duties; announced disbanding of Rada; claimed he would 'do all for peace', with the first step, 'return of all Ukrainian prisoners', second step 'return of our lands', 'Crimea and Donbass are Ukrainian lands'.

Zelenski to Rada (to wild applause turned anxious silence) I very much ask you to adopt a law on the removal of parliamentary immunity, a law on criminal liability for illegal enrichment, a long-suffering electoral code, and please make open lists. And also I ask you to dismiss the head of the Security Service of Ukraine, the Prosecutor General, the Minister of Defense of Ukraine. And this is not all that you can do, but for the beginning it is enough. You will have two months for this. Do it and give yourself the medals, and good points for early parliamentary elections. (As) I dissolve the Supreme Rada of the eighth convocation (video).

Russell "Texas" Bentley publishes his interview with UK journalist Dean O'Brien who has been visiting the DPR for a week after he has reported from Kiev for years.

17 May. Ukraine shelled Pervomaisk, LPR. A male civilian is wounded. Roof of kindergarten no. 4 and a college building are damaged.

According to DPR head Alexandr Pushilin (RIA interview) DPR investigators has found who has organized, ordered, and executed the assassination of the previous DPR head Alexandr Zakharchenko. He did not named those, but indicated that they include 'very high ranking citizens of Ukraine' and 'citizens of other countries which provide support to Ukraine'. In Nov. 2018, Kremlin spokesman Peskov stated that 'there are no grounds not to trust' the DPR investigation.

16 May. After Rada vote, Zelenski's inauguration is set for 20 May.

Ukrainian representative in Minsk negotiations Irina Gerashenko (Wikipedia; not a physical family with Anton Gerashenko; kneeling-on-a-flight at the debates here) announced that she is resigning.

Kolomoiski returned to Ukraine from Israel

12 May .14:20-14:50. Ukraine fired two anti -tank missiles on Dokuchaevsk from their position in Novotroitskoe. This is continuation of shelling of Dokuchaevsk, Gorlovka, and other areas, in continued violations of Minsk agreements since those agreements were signed. See also Strelkov, 8 May

6 May. British ship, HMS "Echo", arrived to the port of Odessa for 3 days, "as a psychological safeguard" for the approaching V-Day, 9 May (the traditional Soviet date). The Hydrographic survey ship was deployed to the Black sea following a November 2018 meeting between UK and Ukranian defence ministers.

5 May. DPR MoD (rext/photo)(video): Ukrainian RSG group was discovered. In the ensuing firefight, one Ukrainian soldier was killed and up to 3 wounded, the rest fled, leaving one wounded soldier behind. That soldier received medical assistance but died of his wounds. Two Kalashnikov guns with silencer were discovered on the battlefield, their serial numbers are shown on photos and video.

2 May. On the anniversary of May 2, 2014 Odessa massacre, UNHR issued a report critical of the official Ukrainian investigation.

Zelensky responds to Putin comments that Russia and Ukraine have a lot in common and a common citizenship (following announced by both sides issuance of passports) is good. Zelensky: (Ukr. ), (Rus.) : "after annexation of Crimea and the aggression in Donbass", the only common thing we have is the border.

Oleg Tsarev: Odessa massacre (2 May, 2014) "organized by Kolomoiskii".

27 Apr. Putin comments on meeting Zelenski at a press conference following his visit to China (Eng. , highlighted)

24 Apr. Putin signed a decree on simplified procedure of receiving Russian passports for Donbass residents

22 Apr. Zelensky promised to 'reset' Minsk process (despite that some of his recent comments raise doubt on whether he has read the agreement -Talk). He also said (Rus. text, video) that his number one task is return of the prisoners (indeed very pressing yet doable matter; treatment of pro-Russia prisoners has been very bad; and this is never a good situation to be in, in any case). He also said that he plans an info-offensive to stop the war in Donbass, and has some creative ideas, asking for journalists to help, and mentioning that his comedy show was once prevented from visiting Mariupol. It remains to be seen whether and how severe problems in Donbass can be resolved by talk-showmanship, but intentions/momentum are so far somewhat more promising than seen on the ground in the 5 years under Poroshenko.

21 Apr. Poroshenko accepted elections loss, with exit polls 73 to 25 in favor of Zelenskii.

DPR medic Lilia Egamberdieva. Killed 19 Apr.

19 Apr. At 18:00, two Ukrainian RSG groups attempted to penetrate DPR defence lines near Oktaibrskoe. They were discovered. Part of the group detonated on a minefield, killing 3 and wounding two. It is said that (overall?) 4 Ukrainian soldiers killed and 5 wounded. DPR losses, 3 killed. A female medic, Lilia Egamberdieva, tried to rescue two heavily wounded DPR soldiers; eventually she called fire on herself firing from a machine gun at a distance from wounded soldiers. All 3 were killed after a massive Ukrainian strike.

Live stream presidential debates, Olimpiisky stadium, Kiev, starting at 19:00 in Kiev (video with Russ. transl.), (Rus. text). Another debate was scheduled at a TV station, 21:00; but Zelensky did not confirmed attendance, and eventually Poroshenko debated himself.

18 Apr. Zelensky interview to RBK Ukraine, discussed in Talk.

Court in Kiev ruled that nationalization of Kolomoiskyi's "PrivatBank" was illegal. Bank of Ukraine disagrees and will appeal.

17 Apr. Ukrainian MP Rybchinsky: "Poroshenko is preparing a coup."

Lutsenko provided details of the meeting with US Amb. Marie Yovanovitch, which he earlier described as receiving a 'do not prosecute list'. In his new detailed version, they had a heated verbal exchange with Yovanovitch, after her comments that prosecution of a certain anti-corruption activist undermines public trust in such activists.

15 Apr. Nadezhda Savchenko and respected Ukrainian negotiator Vladimir Ruban, accused of plotting against the Ukrainian authorities and arrested in March 2018, have been freed by a court decision in Kiev-reports + videos 1, 2, 3.

14 Apr. Poroshenko "debates" himself at the 'Olympiiskii" stadium, as he and Zelensky could not agree on the debate time + venue (stream).

9 Apr. DPR MoD: a soldier was killed by Ukrainian mortar fire. DPR returned fire using 'non-prohibited weapons', destroying firing positions of the adversary. Reportedly 4 UAF soldiers were killed and 3 wounded. It is said that 'Azov' regiment and 'Aidar' assault battalion arrived to Donbass, to the zone of responsibility of 53 mechanized brigade, UAF, near Gorlovka. Those nationalist forces are said to be responsible for the shelling of Golmovsky settlement from BMP which resulted in loss of electric power for 3000 civilians, and damaged a house; a civilian woman was wounded earlier in Zaitsevo.

DPR returned fire and "destroyed the BMP"; it is said that one man called Mikola Nezhivyi is killed and 2 heavily wounded. In Ukrainian version of events (video,, Mikola Nezhivyi was killed near Avdeevka. They were firing on DPR positions from easel anti-tank grenade launcher; DPR responded with anti-tank missile, killing him and wounding two others. Also reported: near Zaitsevo, during de-mining of the area near the water supply of the pump station Seversky Donets - Donbass, one Ukrainian sapper was killed when a mine exploded, two others were wounded.

Poroshenko speaks Russian, Bulgarian, Romanian, Polish, trying to get reelected (but it is 'too little too late').

8 Apr. DPR MoD: as a result of Ukrainian forces shelling of Zaitsevo and Staromikhailovka, two civilian women are wounded. DPR returned fire using 'non-prohibited weapons'; reportedly 3 UAF soldiers were killed and 1 wounded.

7 Apr. DPR MoD accused Poroshenko and 79 separate paratroopers assault brigade, UAF, of an attempted provocation, aimed to raise Poroshenko's reelection chances. At 8:30, two reconnaissance and sabotage groups, 15-20 men each, advanced in the direction Pishevik-Oktaibr'. One group was tasked in provoking DPR to return fire, while the other group task was to 'ensure' civilian casualties at 'Oktiabr' check-point , with DPR blamed for those deaths. The RSG groups were discovered early and fired on. Losses are being verified.

5 Apr. Ukrainian forces shelled Donetsk, Volvo center area, "Trudovskaya" mine-pit, Veseloe settlement. Mortars, AGS, firearms were used. Donetsk city hospital 21 is damaged. A civilian man is wounded,

4 Apr. After floating several excuses not to do it, Poroshenko eventually responded in kind and accepted Zelensky's strongly-presented challenge to debate at a stadium, in a carefully staged video of his own. Drugs/substances test is expected, with details negotiated.

3 Apr. Yesterday Ukraine cut water supply to Dokuchaevsk and Yelenovka, affecting 25,00 people, despite the fact that targeting civilian infrastructure or utilities is a war crime.

Noted, according to a later report, water supply to Dokuchaevsk was restored, at 7 p.m.

NATO sends ships on a visit to Odessa, discuss accompanying Ukrainian ships to stage another provocation in Kerch straights, which may be seen as a fruitless attempt to lift fortunes of the failing Poroshenko reelection campaign with this demonstrative Western backing.

2 Apr. Timoshenko says (1, 2, video) that "Poroshenko falsified elections regarding his result", but she will not challenge the results in courts, as she does not have trust in Ukrainian courts, as they are. With this, Zelensky and Poroshenko advance to the second round. Timoshenko won't back either of them (earlier Zelensky denied reports that negotiations giving Timoshenko a significant role in the government are on-going).

1 Apr. On April's fool day, Ukraine's decision not to renew friendship treaty with Russia comes into force.

Highlights from the past

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'.


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


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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.

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