Ukraine news/Archive/2021

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29 Dec. LPR says that their soldier is kidnapped on 27 Dec. by Ukrainian special forces.

21 Dec. Russia claims "American mercenaries" are preparing a chemical weapon incident in east Ukraine (Ukrainian FM denies). Basurin, detailing claim by Shoigu: "in autumn, botulinum toxin and antidote to it were imported to Ukraine" and "a container weighing 300 kg was delivered to Mariupol, in which there was a chemical warfare agent benzoxazepine, used in the form of an aerosol".

18 Dec. "Petro" Poroshenko ignored Ukrainian Bureau of Investigation agents who tried to hand him summons, video, Poroshenko cursing in Russian ('let's go').

17 Dec. Moscow lists demands for avoiding war with NATO - RU FM statement (Drafts: USA, NATO), BBC, TASS En, TASS Ru, Saker Analysis: MofA, Orlov, Saker, John Helmer, Buchanan, Patrick Armstrong, Russian media. EU responds: "Only winners can make demands."

US DoD John Kirby: ...if there's an incursion, another incursion, and if some of our NATO allies ask for additional capabilities or rotational elements, we will be positively disposed to consider that, but I have no such requests to speak to and no movements to speak to today...

13 Dec. Putin phone call with Boris Johnson (Kremlin, Eng, Downing St., Eng.).


11 Dec. Opolchenie: Ukrainian deployment of 6 automatic heavy mortars "Vasilyok" in Konstantinovka, and 17 T-80 tanks in Zachatovka near the residential sector is recorded.

10 Dec. Opolchenie: today ukry used a drone with IED suspended from it. IED was dropped in the area of ​​public transport stops in a residential area of ​​ "Trudovskaya" minepit settlement. The IED did not explode (or was equipped like a mine to be triggered when disarmed). The unexploded explosive device was found by local residents. During the neutralization of the explosive device, it detonated. As a result, one serviceman of the engineer battalion was killed. The second soldier was wounded by shrapnel, and as a result his arms were amputated; he died on the following According to information received, 12 "Gvozdika" self-propelled guns are located at the Zachatovka railway station. There is also evidence that several trained crews of the Javelin ATGM have arrived in the area near Yasinovataya.

9 Dec. TASS: According to the FSB, on December 9 at 09:12 the command ship "Donbass" of the Ukrainian Navy withdrew from the roadstead of the port of Mariupol and moved in the direction of the Kerch Strait. "At present, Donbass is located at a distance of 18 nautical miles to the Kerch Strait, it does not comply with the requirements to change the course. These actions pose a threat to the safety of navigation," the FSB said.

Said to turn around. "Was warned by Russian coast guard ship at 13:45 and responded that does not plan to follow through the Kerch Strait."

Gerasimov: "Any military provocations of Kiev in Donbass will be suppressed"; denies reports on preparations of Russia's invasion.

7 Dec. "Biden during negotiations has been threatening Putin with sanctions over Ukraine" - White House, Kremlin

"Putin seeks guarantees against eastward NATO expansion and deployment of offensive weapons close to Russia" (etc.)-1, 2.

In the past day, Ukraine fired 2 mortar shells on Gorlovka; a lull was reported in the previous day.

Ukrainian sources claim deployment of additional forces near the separation line, and more targeted tactics by L/DPR forces. (No independent evidence of that, or of preparations for a large scale pro-Russia forces operation).

5 Dec. Mr. Reznikov, who was appointed defence minister last month by President Volodymyr Zelensky, called on “the Anglo-Saxon allies” to act outside the North Atlantic Treaty Organization…Ukraine, he said, needed a “quick response” from its allies that would help it address a lack of anti-aircraft missiles, modern warplanes and naval craft…. But just as important, he said, would be Canadian, U.S. and British soldiers visibly deployed to positions near the front line. Anti-Bellum

2 Dec. DPR head Denis Pushilin: in the case of Ukrainian attack, DPR will count on own resources, but in the view of ever increasing foreign help to Ukraine, he does not exclude asking for military assistance of Russia (and Belarus) - 1, 2+video.


21 Nov. Heavy Ukrainian shelling of Gorlovka is reported.

It is said that Yasinovataya machine-building plant (YaMZ) sustained damage by Ukrainian shelling. The plant is one of the largest producers of mining, tunneling and drilling equipment in the DPR. Before the war, the machines produced at the plant were supplied to more than 35 countries. The hallmark of YaMZ are mining combines".

20 Nov. Many Western analysts believe that a Russia-NATO war over Ukraine is becoming increasingly unavoidable.

19 Nov. LPR. Sniper of Ukrainian special operations forces is killed (1, 2).

Civilian woman is wounded by Ukrainian mortar fire, north-west of Lugansk.

Unending reports of Ukrainian shelling, including artillery use.

15 Nov. Putin signed a degree (1, 2) giving goods from L/DPR same status as Russian goods (for the sake of state and municipal purchases, etc, and until political settlement in accordance with Minsk agreements is reached, etc). --Unclear why that took 7 years to do ---

12. Nov. Western sources again fear that "Russia on brink of invading Ukraine." Refugees on the Polish-Belarusian border cause hysteria throughout Europe. Two Russian paratroopers die while "training" in Belarus.

8. 9 Nov. On both dates, 8 and 9 Nov, DPR reported that one DPR soldier is killed and one wounded by Ukrainian shelling.

4 Nov. DPR soldier is killed and two more wounded by Ukrainian fire. DPR returned fire, said to result in Ukrainian casualties.

1-4 Nov. Security situation remain tense. There are reports of troop movements, by both sides. On Russia's side, it probably is posturing, and is seen as such, but the fact that posturing is ineffective makes things very dangerous as there seems to be no way to put a break if things escalate.


26 Oct. Ukrainian sources claim, with drone video footage, and opolchenie sources seem to confirm, that 4 DPR soldiers were killed in DPR territory, apparently by Ukrainian reconnaissance and sabotage group.

It is said that Ukrainian forces entered and claimed control of Staromarievka, in the grey zone, causing a firefight. A video is published by Ukrainian volunteer sources and confirmed by Ukrainian armed forces, said to show Bayraktar drone attack which destroyed DPR artillery piece, and likely wounded or killed DPR soldiers. This would be the first known use of Bayraktar in Donbass.

Dutch court ruled to give Skif gold from Crimea, being on exhibition in Holland 2014, to Ukraine. Moscow to appeal, not to expel.

23 Oct. DPR. A civilian is wounded by Ukrainian fire in Western Donetsk.

Vershinin seconds Sharii: "there could be a war", which is not what ordinary Ukrainians, or Russians, need. This follows Lloyd Austin's "NATO door is open" for Ukraine and Georgia, and Putin in Valdai commenting on a red line.

22 Oct. DPR: Six civilians and 82 servicemen of the DPR People's Militia have been killed as a result of shelling by Ukrainian forces since the entry into force of additional measures to strengthen and control the ceasefire (July 27, 2020).

"Basurin presented a video of the Ukrainian military unloading a mortar from a JCCC truck"

13 Oct. In a move that outraged the pro-Russian side, Ukraine captured LPR representative in the Joint Center for the Coordination and Control of the Ceasefire (JCCC) That happened during road or demining work agreed with Ukrainian between two checkpoints near Zolotoe. Later video of his interrogation by SBU emerged, where he appears to confirm that he was armed with PM handgun, in violation of the instructions. But that does not justify capturing him, to begin with. LPR strongly protested, but it appears that situation is still unresolved. OSCE reaction was weak, and there seems to be nothing in place to resolve such serious problems.

LPR restricts OSCE SMM movement until JCCC officer is released

11 Oct. Dmitry Medvedev: "Why contacts with the current Ukrainian leadership are meaningless" (noted: criticized by opolchenie for the conclusion to do nothing).

Vladislav Surkov: "Deserted democracy and other political wonders of 2121" : "Why, one wonders, to choose someone and send somewhere, paying for the travel and abundant food, today, when there is an Internet that is capable of transmitting your opinion to anyone at the speed of light, bypassing well-fed intermediaries?" "(noted: written after feeding of the author was stopped).

4 Oct. Mihkail Saakashvili on in hunger strike in a prison in Georgia after he had crossed the border hiding in the back of a lorry, announced his presence over facebook and was quickly arrested. There are two sentences against him that were decided in his absence in 2018 while he was in Ukraine that amount to 9 years in prison.

3 Oct. Pro-Ukrainian social media: Archive video: blowing up the separatists and the evacuation group that arrived by IED. Presumably - the district of Grigorovka, Donetsk region. Shooting date unknown. Good quality drone video and no reason or regret.

1 Oct. Ukraine and Turkey signed an agreement to open a center in Vasilkovo to service, repair, train operators of Bayraktar attack drones, and in the future start production of those drones in Ukraine. In the past those drones gave Azerbaijan military advantage over Armenia, and can now motivate large scale conflict in Donbass.


30 Sep. After Hungary signed a 15-year deal with Gazprom for gas delivered over the Turkstream pipeline and then via Serbia and Austria, circumventing Ukraine, Ukraine complained to the EU, which the Hungarian foreign minister called a "serious attack on our sovereignty". There are already tensions between the countries over the Ukrainian "language law" that discriminates ethnic minorities like the Hungarian (and the Russian).

29 Sep. LPR spokesman: On the Slavianoserbsk direction, the militants of the 57th brigade from positions in the area of Novotoshkovskoe conducted sniper fire at LPR positions in the area of Donetsk settlement, a LPR soldier is killed as a result (same event as 28 Sep. report? --unclear).

28 Sep. JCCC: LPR soldier is killed by Ukrainian sniper fire in the area of Donetsk settlement.

25 Sep. DPR soldier is killed. DPR returned fire, Ukrainian casualties reported.

22 Sep. "In Ukraine, an attempt was made on the life of presidential adviser Sergei Shefir. The car of Vladimir Zelensky's longtime partner, co-owner of the Kvartal 95 studio, was fired upon from automatic weapons, and the driver was seriously injured"

Pictured: early detection system TT-RF30-I-R, given to Ukraine by USA and transferred to the ATO zone in 2015.

17 Sep. On the day of elections in Russia, Ukrainian forces shelled "Oktiabrskaya" mine-pit settlement. Two civilian men are wounded. Seven homes sustained damage. 20 mortar 120-mm shells were fired.

11 Sep. Security deterioration is reported. A man and a woman are wounded by Ukrainian shelling of Dokuchaevsk.

It is said that an explosion occurred at an oil depot in the Kirovsky district of Donetsk, caused by drone attack. Fire was put out (photos). (Noted, some doubts were raised on social media about claims that 1300 tons of fuel were destroyed; available photos do not show a major fire. Water is pumped continuously into oil reservoir on the video).

8 Sep. A civilian man and a civilian woman are wounded by Ukrainian shelling of Kievsky district of Donetsk. :Apparently, DPR forces responded. DPR reports that 2 Ukrainian soldiers participating in the attack were seriously wounded and later died; Ukrainian sources report that 6 soldiers received acubaro trauma; several vehicles were damaged , 1, 2.

A year late, CNN "exclusively" discovers the SBU plot to hijack a Turkish Airlines plane and force it to land in Kiev.

Mariana Bezuglaya, Rada MP and head of Ukrainian temporary commission of inquiry: There was no directly sanctioned special operation regarding the forced landing of a Turkish plane with "Wagnerites" in Ukraine. But there was a special intelligence event, which was within the framework of the constant work directly of the Main Intelligence Directorate [Ukr. MoD] to document, to collect information regarding persons involved in the aggression from the Russian Federation, actions in ORDLO, and so on. Earlier Zelensky claimed that it was not Ukrainian operation but they offered to provide Lukashenko with information and were hoping that he will extradite the group to Ukraine, with Lukashenko initially warming up to the idea.

7 Sep. A video of interrogation of suspects in sabotage on a gas pipeline in Crimea appeared. On 23 Aug., a gas pipeline was damaged in Perevalnoye village between Simferopol and Yalta. Ukraine is blamed as organizer.

4 Sep. Kuleba: US top political leadership has assured Zelenskyy that it will continue to support the Ukrainian people and the defense capability of our state. This year Ukraine will receive a batch of Javelin systems. I do not exclude that we will be able to reach agreements on other types of defensive lethal and non-lethal equipment. For obvious reasons, I cannot divulge the details. We look forward to the visit of the US Def Sec to Ukraine.


31 Aug. Zelenskii, who run on fake hopes of peace, is in Washington (banned Newsone report here), apparently to beg for US weapons, after some $85 bln. worth of weapons were left to Taliban.

...Signs some green and nuclear energy agreements. The completion of the Khmelnitsky NPP has been identified as a pilot project, and in the future the parties are to build four more power units using the latest American AP1000 technology. The total cost of the project will be up to 25 bln. $. (Westinghouse emerged from a bankruptcy in 2018; presently China is the sole operator. Belarus NPP with 2 Russian VVER-1200 will cost from 7 to 10 bln $.)

Newsone: The Foundation for the Defense of Freedom of Expression appealed to the UN, OSCE and Freedom House regarding the destruction of freedom of speech by the Ukrainian authorities

30 Aug. Refugees from Afghanistan arrived in Odessa

29 Aug. LPR soldier is killed by Ukrainian small arms fire near Zolotoe-5.

Civilian man, 1962 DOB, is wounded by Ukrainian fire in Trudovskya mine-pit settlement, near Donetsk.

28 Aug. Ukraine fired on Gorlovka using various weapons including 122 mm artillery. A girl, 7 and a boy, 10 are wounded.

It is reported that DPR returned fire, after Ukrainian forces fired 30 mortar shells on Mineralnoe from Avdeevka. As a result, it is said that 9 Ukrainian soldiers are wounded and at least 3 vehicles destroyed.

US Embassy in Kiev: Thank you, Ukrainian Defense Intelligence Special Operations Forces, for safely escorting Afghan partners of the United States], including people with disabilities, to their planes in Kabul.

24 Aug. Report: Ukrainian military plane which came to Kabul to collect Ukrainians was not hijacked, rather wealthy afghans paid for it to fly them to Iran.

23 Aug. "LPR security prevents Ukrainian terrorist attack in Krasny Luch" (video).

21 Aug. Ukrainian authorities close the web site of Strana.UA. The site can still be found at Ukraine also introduced sanctions against Anatoly Sharii and his wife and family, and against Igor Guzhva, chief editor of Strana.UA (after Strana.Ua took part in attacks on Sharii).

15 Aug. Mayor of Ukrainian city of Krivoy Rog (Zelenskii's birthplace), a member of an opposition party 'Opposition platform-for life', is found dead in a pool of blood, next to a hunting carbine, Kalashnikov style.

12 Aug. Turkish "Baykar" has plans to establish R&D and an assembly plant for its drones in Ukraine. "Baykar" drones had major impact on Azerbaijan-Armenia conflict over Karabach. Those plans are very dangerous and may lead to a large-scale conflict.

6 Aug. Blogger Donetsky: also sprach Goloborodko

4 Aug. UK gave decommissioned minehunters HMS Blyth and Ramsey to Ukraine.

2 Aug. Civilian man (1963 DOB) and woman (1964) were wounded by Ukrainian shelling of Kominternovo. The woman died the next day in hospital; the man was discharged from the hospital.


31 Jul. Four DPR soldiers are killed by Ukrainian fire near Petrovskoe. DPR group was evacuating a wounded soldier, they informed Ukrainian side and asked to cease fire (but apparently were still fired on). DPR returned fire.

30 Jul. It is said that US House passes State Dept. funding bill, including an amendment (Keller, 67 v2) that "suspends the President’s waiver authority related to the Nord Stream 2 Pipeline for fiscal year 2022 and each fiscal year thereafter". Bill also increases support to Ukraine (including $481.5 mln financial assistance).

28 Jul. 3 DPR soldiers are killed and 1 wounded by Ukrainian fire on Novaya Marievka (it is said that wounded soldier later died). It is said that DPR returned fire.

27 Jul. UAF commander Khomchak is dismissed by Zelenskii, replaced, by Zalyzhnyi 1, 2.

26 Jul. After unending daily shelling by Ukrainian forces, with little or no response, apparently (quoting Ukrainian sources) DPR returned fire with an artillery strike on one of UAF command posts, some 16-18 km away, wounding a number of servicemen. Artillery shelling by Ukraine is reported the next day.

Former Ukrainian president and head of the Ukrainian delegation in the trilateral contact group Leonid Kravchuk is intensive care, on a ventilator, after a heart surgery in June.

22 Jul. Citizen of Belarus Alexey Fadeev had his sentence increased to 21 years by Czech appellate court for helping pro-Russian side in the Donbass 1, 2, 3, 4. He said he went to help to against Nazi atrocities, was motivated by videos he saw, and did not serve on the front lines. That was misqualified by court as participation in a terrorist group (despite that it is the other side who regularly shells civilians, and does not abide by the ceasefire agreements, for 7 years).

21 Jul. "Joint Statement of the US and Germany on Support for Ukraine, European Energy Security, and our Climate Goals"

20 Jul. On Jul 13, Dmitrii Kozak gave interview to Politique Internationale. It is taking a soft line on Donbass, is believed to reflect results of Biden-Putin meeting (and meets skeptical reaction of Russian patriotic opposition and aligned resources).

16 Jul. Explosion and fire of a gas pipeline in the Budennovsky district of Donetsk. DPR accused Ukraine of sabotage: special services of Ukraine were preparing a thermobaric explosion.

Oleg Tsarev interview: discusses Avakov's resignation; believes that some agreements were reached at the Biden-Putin meeting to do with the USA contributing to making Ukraine fulfill Minsk agreements. As evidence he recalls that DPR/LPR recently supported including the US in the Normandy format meetings, after long opposition it (However, Ukrainian shelling and attacks still continue, and without full cessation of violence it would be vacuous)

10 Jul. LPR reports intensified shelling, over hundred 120-mm mortar shells fired in the past day in total; return fire reported.

9 Jul. Ukrainian shelling is reported daily, the latest is shelling of western Donetsk in the morning

5 Jul. War correspondent Katya Katina was hospitalized and on July 9 died after a stroke.

2 Jul. One DPR soldier is killed and one wounded by Ukrainian shelling. DPR defenders started to be allowed to return fire (but opolchenie reports question effectiveness).


30 Jun. Photos/video of an attack on pro-Russian fan at Ukraine-Sweden football match in Glasgow 1, 2. Apparently was trying to make friends, initially succeeded.

28 Jun. Civilian woman is wounded by Ukrainian mortar shelling of Gorlovka

24 Jun. DPR soldier is killed by Ukrainian drone strike.

23 Jun. Russia fires (video) warning shots and drops bombs next to British destroyer HMS Defender, after it enters Russian territorial waters off Crimea, after highly insensitive and provocative port call in Odessa. British MoD do not recognize Crimea as Russian, claiming they were transiting Ukrainian waters. They deny there was fire towards them, stating that scheduled Russian gunnery exercises were taking place nearby (video, above, appears to show "exercise" was to fire warning shots). Jonathan Beale BBC reporter onboard describes their transit as a 'deliberate move'. They knew they were leaving international waters. OSINT sources suggest a US intel aircraft in the area at the time. At initial stage of radio exchange with Russian coast guard, British ship is informed about Ukrainian coastal guard warning 235/21 (Word doc here).

"In a trilateral agreement signed onboard HMS Defender, which was in" Odessa "as part of the Carrier Strike Group deployment, the UK, Ukraine and industry will collaborate to boost Ukraine’s naval capabilities" (+see above).

21 Jun. 3 DPR soldiers are killed by Ukrainian mortar attack despite all ceasefires. One more is killed when SPG-9 was fired on ambulance vehicle collecting bodies, despite additional "silence regime" agreed. Five more are wounded. Anniversary of Nazi attack on USSR is June 22.

11 Jun. Five LPR soldiers, members of "Prizrak" battalion, are killed near Golubovskoe when Ukrainian RSG group ambushed their checkpoint. It is said that a foreign sniper rifle was used in the attack.

3 Jun. UNSC ‘Arria-Formula’ meeting on the circumstances of Maidan and its aftereffects in Donbass, video: Eng, Rus. Tsarev talk, text, [ Rus.] Presenters are former Ukrainian Prime Minister Nikolai Azarov, former Rada MP Oleg Tsarev (more here) and Vladimir Oleynik, British reporter Dean O’Brien and French journalist Anne-Laure Bonnel (who uses French diplomatic and military sources). MSM ignores, West castigates. US and UK did not show up at all, saying that some of the participants are under their sanctions. France and Ireland repeated well-known cliches with no interaction with presented testimonies.

Donbass (Vimeo , OK) - documentary film by Anne-Laure Bonnel.

"First line of the Northern Stream 2 is completed".

Ukrainian officials used Giuliani to sow disinformation.


28 May. US prosecutors investigate if Ukraine criminally interfered in the 2020 US presidential elections by spreading disinformation.

Belarus may suspend shipments of A95 petrol to Ukraine (apparently to do with repairs at oil processing plant). It also introduced targeted sanctions on Ukrainian imports, after Ukraine cut air traffic with Belarus. (According to opolchenie, a lot of Ukrainian tank fuel is coming from Russia and Belarus).

27 May. According to Ukrainian data presented to OSCE, 38 of its soldiers are killed and 115 wounded since additional ceasefire measures were introduced in July, 2020

24 May. Belarus expels all Latvian diplomats, for insult to Belarus flag in Riga where hockey championship is taking place. (Latvia expels Belarus diplomats in turn).

23 May. NEXTA founder/editor Roman Protasevich was arrested in Belarus after Ryanair plane Athens-Vilnius landed in Minsk after the captain was informed of a fake bomb threat issued in the name of Hamas. (RFE/RL version here). This seem to follow footsteps of Ukraine forcing return of Belavia plane on Oct. 22, 2016, to detain anti-Maidan blogger, citizen of Armenia (later released). It is also suggested (see eg here) that Russian PMC arrests in Belarus were originally planned in the form of forcing their flight from Minsk to land in Ukraine (this version was reported by Butusov of

19 May. DPR: In the past day, Ukraine violated ceasefire 5 times, fired 50 munitions above 12.7 mm. DPR soldier was killed on May 18. (Opolchenie report says a soldier was killed in the evening of May 17; unclear whether this is the same event).

11 May. DPR: one soldier is killed and 2 wounded by Ukrainian shelling.

It is said that official suspicion notes on treason and embezzlement charges are issued to MP Medvedchuk and Kozak; SBU is trying to conduct a search at Medvedchuk home and "serve him with a detention request." Medvedchuk response is that this is politically motivated persecution, and that he will remain in Ukraine and fight the charges. (Earlier, 2 Feb. 2021, main opposition media resources aligned with his party were banned to broadcast).

9 May. As a result of Ukrainian shelling of Trudovskaya minepit settlement, Tomskaya st., 10, a civilian man is killed, Puchkin Anatoly Nazarovich, born 12.10.1939

Victory day parade in Donetsk.

Tatyana Montyan carries Zelenskii's grandfather photo at "Immortal regiment" walk in Donetsk. "Let at least his grandfather takes a walk with "Immortal regiment" while his grandson arranges witches sabbath of SS Galitchina in the center of Kiev". Semyon Zelensky, born in 1924, was called up for military service in 1942. During the Great Patriotic War, he served as the commander of a mortar platoon, and then the commander of a rifle company of the 174th regiment of the 57th Guards rifle division. He was awarded the Order of the Red Star.

7 May. Three DPR soldiers are killed by Ukrainian shelling. According to DPR, they returned fire and say that 2 Ukrainian soldiers are killed and one wounded as a result.

6 May. UNSC Arria Formula: Drivers of conflict in Ukraine (Eng, Rus, Russian representative comments after the event).

5 May. DPR reports Ukrainian mortar shelling of Gorlovka and Veseloe in northern Donetsk; DPR returned fire near Veseloe. Ukrainian 122mm artillery shelling of Staromikhailovka, western Donetsk, is also reported.

LPR report: Ukrainian forces tried to attack, one LPR soldier is killed in a fight.

DPR and LPR blame Ukraine for provocations during US Sec. State visit.

4 May. DPR soldier is killed by Ukrainian sniper near Kominternovo.

Victims of the 2014 massacre remembered at the Odessa Trade Union Building

2 May. Marks the 7th anniversary of the Odessa Trade Union massacre‎. Arria formula UNSC informal meeting to hear testimonies of survivors is announced by representative of Russia.

1 May. Opolchenie: In the Sakhanka area, Ukrainian forces fired at a civilian tractor plowing a field. The tractor driver was not injured.

Gorlovka: elderly couple are both wounded by a landmine explosion with traumatic foot amputation while grazing their livestock

Opolchenie lists 9 soldiers and 1 civilian killed in DPR in April.


23 Apr. There are many reports of continued Ukrainian shelling. Residents' made video here, "The Trudovskye (settlement) woke up feeling that they were being bombed." Next day: "You can check your watches by Ukrainian shelling"

22 Apr. The 2021 Donbass Crisis‎ may be over. Russia withdraws troops from the border after president Putin's speech.

At least 3 NATO military-transport planes arrived to Ukraine in the past 3 days, at least 6 from 2 to 12 April

Putin responded to Zelenskii's invitation to meet in Donbass, inviting Zelenskii to discuss bilateral ties in Moscow , and saying that matters concerning LPR and DPR need to be discussed with LPR and DPR first. In addition, Kozak offered to have a Normany 4 (ie Germany , France, Russia, Ukraine) +LPR and DPR meeting in Donbass. The latter was rejected by Ukraine, as Ukraine will not talk to LPR and DPR (either in error or through pressure). Ukrainian official Reznikov threw a fit about LPR and DPR names used at all, portraying it as de-facto recognition. (It is well known what are the actual positions). Same official: "During the war, the president cannot go to the capital and meet with a person who is a representative of the aggressor country. It seems to me that this is a bit strange proposal" (it is well known that no war is declared between Ukraine and Russia; is this about the war with Donbass?).

21-22 Apr. OSCE SMM: 52 Ukrainian tanks "beyond withdrawal lines but outside designated storage sites" (and 11 for L/DPR).

21 Apr. Two DPR soldiers are killed by Ukrainian shelling.

US Senate bill has 300 mln$ per year in new military assitance to Ukraine, a program to encourage foreign donations of excess military equipment, and priority in gaining US excess military equipment.

Russia's Federal Assembly waiting for Putin's speech

21 Apr. Russian President Vladimir Putin delivered his annual address to Russia’s Federal Assembly. It was speculated that Putin will announce changes to Russia's Ukraine policy, pending approval of an emergency session of the Federation Council to be held on April 23rd (although some, including patriotic opposition figures, were sceptical). In the end, the speech was mostly on domestic issues, such as post-covid support for families and businesses, and various domestic projects and initiatives. While there were some foreign policy items, such as coups being unacceptable, changes in the posture were rather subtle, and desire to not burn the bridges was empasised, while warning was given not to cross (not specified) red lines. It ended with briefly reporting on increased readiness of the armed forces.

17 Apr. Russian FSB said that a Ukrainian consul in St. Petersburg "was caught red-handed" receiving classified informatiom from law enforcement databases. In unrelated developments of diplomacy, US Ambassador was "advised" to travel to USA for consultations in the process of counter-sanctions announcment, and Lavrov said this to further the diplomacy. (All that does not sound too enchanting).

Lukashenko makes comments on planned assassination of him and his family. Belarus earlier released videos of conversations of alleged conspirators and footage of arrests made.

14 Apr. Claims appeared about plans to create US/NATO bases in Ukraine; it is further claimed that summit proposal may have to do with diverting attention and winning time for those plans. Factual basis is unclear. Meanwhile, Prague was proposed as venue; with above caution, seemed like a good one. (Before the diplomatic row, that is).

13 Apr. Russian DM Shoigu: US troops are being deployed from mainland North America across the Atlantic to Europe. There is a movement of troops in Europe to the Russian borders. The main forces are concentrated in the Black Sea and the Baltic region. "In total, 40 thousand servicemen and 15 thousand units of weapons and military equipment, including strategic aviation, will be concentrated near our territory." ...In the past 3 weeks, Russia deployed to its western borders two armies and three formations of the Airborne Forces, "for checks of the combat readiness". It is planned to complete the checks in the next 2 weeeks.

5 Apr. At least 3 Hercules planes arrived from the West to Ukraine. (Blogger Donetskii. Flightbox: 06-6161, MC136 / RCH136, landed 7h 38m ago, Kiev (KBP / UKBB)- Ramstein (RMS / ETAR), Monday, April 5 2021, 03:05 EEST Departed). One similar plane arrived to Kiev earlier, and another to Lvov.

DPR reports a brief firefight on Apr. 4 with Ukrainian RSG group near Shumy. A body of Ukrainian soldier Igor Baitalo , 1995 DoB is found on a minefiled; Ukrainian side did not collect the body or announced the loss; DPR asks to do so.

"Ukraine will look for another city instead of Minsk for negotiations on Donbass."

4 Apr. According to Kravchuk, Ukraine will not participate in the negotiations of the contact group unless the Donetsk People's Republic excludes from its delegation a public expert, journalist Maya Pirogova, who was convicted in absentia by a Ukrainian court for her activities in the structures of the DPR. (Unclear what are her crimes, apart from working with DPR; charge of "terrorism" is reported).

LPR spokesman: according to the information we received, on the banks of the Seversky Donets River in the area of Nikolayevka settlement a civilian was wounded by an unknown explosive device dropped by militants of the 80th brigade (UAF) using a UAV (drone). As a result, he received multiple shrapnel wounds of moderate severity and was taken to a hospital, where he was provided with qualified medical care.

3 Apr. DPR: Ukrainian drone attack killed a child, 2016 DoB, in Alexanrovskoe settlement; a woman is wounded in the same attack. Katia Katina report, with the boy's photo and video interview of his grandmother.

Ukrainian activist and lawyer Tatiana Montan is present at boy's funeral, and confirms that his death is not a fake. Relatives say on the video that explosive device was dropped by Ukrainian drone. They also say that story about ailing grandfather having some IED is fake. There are photos from the site. Impact imprint on cement, round small holes on a water bucket, broken glass seen. Relatives said that OSCE did not visit. Relatives said boy lost leg(s) and arm(s), and was killed soon after exiting the house to play in the yard. Another report, linked by Katina, shows more detailed photos; presents an opinion that device flew from above as there is 360 degree spread of fragments, and as the only viable alternative to drone offers a version that Ukrainian or pro-Ukrainian persons fired a mortar at the house of strongly pro-Russian family. The house is apparently some 15 km from the separation line, according to other pro -LDPR reporting.

Peskov comments, KP, Kommersant.

Russia opens a criminal investigation.

UN and JCCC officials visit Vladik's family home. Grandmother says that officials recorded information but did not provide an assessment. She says she wants to receive expert opinion as she is hurt by theories, and there were no weapons and 'no war' at their home.

2 Apr. LPR reports Ukrainian shelling (mortars, grenade launchers), resulting in a firefight. One LPR soldier is killed. According to LPR sources, Ukrainian military planes arrived to Chuguev , Kharkov region, and a helicopter is deployed towards the separation line.

In Zaitsevo, near Gorlovka, two residential homes are reported on fire (video report), minutes after the area came under Ukrainian fire from a heavy machine gun "Utes".

1 Apr. DPR announces its first ever draft ("200 men will join the corps").

US, Canada, UK Defense Attaché met with Ukrainian Min. of defense Taran, deputy. Min. defense Petrenko, Polishchuk, commander of the combined forces lieutenant general. Naev and col. Budanov.

Ukrainian MoD and some Western MSM reports claim US and NATO backing for Ukraine.

"Readout of Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark A. Milley’s Phone Call with Ukraine’s Chief of the General Staff Lt. Gen. Ruslan Khomchak"

Secretary Blinken’s Call with Ukrainian Foreign Minister Kuleba

Western MSN: "U.S. military’s European Command raised its watch level from possible crisis to potential imminent crisis — the highest level — in response to the deployment of the additional Russian troops" (noted, this reports on watchcon level, not defcon or redcon).

After many reports providing photo-visual evidence of additional Ukrainian heavy armor deployments, reports appear on additional Russian troops deployment to the Crimea and to the Ukrainian border.


26 Mar. Ukraine claims that 4 of its soldiers are killed and two wounded in Shumy settlment, blamed on pro-Russian/LDPR forces (noted, full circumstances are unclear, report is disputed, in particular by commenters suspecting landmine explosion; I could not find relevant material in OSCE reports on 27 or 29 March where it would be xpected; people are killed on a regular basis, on both sides, and reports of similar-sized casualties by LDPR forces do not result in war promotions).

24 Mar. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky signs Decree No. 117/2021, essentially declaring war on Russia

23 Mar. DPR: two soldiers are killed by Ukrainain shelling near Donetsk airport

22 Mar. DPR: A civilian is killed in Alexandrovka by Ukrainian sniper shot.

20 Mar. Commentary describes "Kravchuk plan", said to be de-facto capitulation of the republics with no special status and Ukraine taking control of the border before the elections. It is said that Ukraine tries to obtain Germany and France backing of the plan, with military moves towards separation line to drive home the message. Moscow does not agree to the plan and indicates that it will raise the stakes and will support the republics if Ukraine attacks. With all this, situation is dangerous and may escalate out of control.

Blogger Donetskii commentary reminds that Ukraine used tensions to supress opposition figures in Ukraine (Medvedchuk and others), and to move its forces into the conflict zone, no matter what will happen with diplomacy. He asserts that all those back and forth escalations and ceasefires do not resolve the conflict and do not serve interests of the people (while he does not want a full blown war, either).

18 Mar. Daily, numerous reports on Ukrainian shelling (mortars, AGS, small arms, occasional artillery) . Resumed despite "stricter measures" around February, with no end in site, and with many reports on heavy arms moved towards the separation line.

17 Mar. Opolchenie: one soldier is killed today, under Gorlovka.

13 Mar. There is increasing speculation about a planned Ukrainian attack on Donbass; in particular stream of reports of heavy weapons (including heavy artillery and air defense) moved in daytime to the front line, open-sourced report of 8 Bayraktar drones in Ukrainian possesion, etc.

12 Mar. DPR soldier is killed by Ukrainian shelling.

10 Mar. DPR. One DPR soldier is killed, another is wounded by Ukrainian fire. DPR said it returned fire.

It is noted that pro-Ukrainian bots spread on social media fake messages claiming that Russian military teams entered L/DPR.

5 Mar. DPR. Three DPR soldiers are killed and one wounded by Ukrainian sniper shots to the head. One of those killed is Varnavskii Roman. In the absence of international response, DPR forces returned fire. Ukrainian losses are reported.

3 Mar. DPR police officer Voina V.I. is killed by Ukrainian sniper when his group responded to a call saying that a group of children was seen in the grey zone between Ukraiian and DPR forces.


26 Feb. Ukrainian forces fired eighteeen 82-mm mortar shells on Donetsk state plant of chemical products and the adjacent territory; a DPR soldier was killed by shelling.

25 Feb. LPR soldier is heavily wounded by Ukrainian sniper fire near Nizhnee Lozovoe

Heavy shelling of northwestern Donetsk is reported, Yelenovka was shelled earlier.

Heavy weapons shelling of Gorlovka is reported.

23 Feb. DPR. Ukrainian shelling in multiple areas is reported, at least 4 residential houses damaged

22 Feb. A civilian man is wounded by Ukrainian fire in Alexanrdovka, west of Donetsk

21 Feb. Zaitsevo in Gorlovka shelled once again, a direct hit on empty residential house.

20 Feb. At least six opolchenie soldier (Gorbachev Vladimir, Shepetki Evgenii, Alekseev Valery, Petrenko Sergey, Syrovatsky Dmitry, Pyatak Vladimir) killed by Ukrainian mortar shelling near Gorlovka, and 3 wounded, (two, by the official report) shortly after Ukrainian leadership authorised local commanders to open fire without higher-ups approval. Unconfirmed reports claim that more were killed. War correspondent Kotenok: "On situation in Gorlovka. Our losses: 5-200, 3-300, a dugout (blindazh) was smashed. Fire corrected from the drone. From 2 am to 5 am it (Ukrainian fire) flew here." Another oplochenie/Strelkov unconfirmed report claims that losses of the "3 battalion of the 3 brigade is from 2 to 11 killed; either reconnaissance and sabotage group or murder" (Bezler on 21 Feb: 20 killed; that figure is denied by Evgenii Skripnik "Prapor" who tells about 7 killed and scores wounded, after a rescue group arrived and better account made); and that "at minepit Glubokaia, 7 -200 and 4 -300" (see also 1, 2); it is unclear whether reports are accurate and whether it has intersection with Kotenok report (who is a well-established war reporter). Opolchenie and official DPR sources say that DPR responded and "supressed enemy fire"; it is claimed that 11 Ukrainian soldiers were killed.

DPR later acknowledged that 7 DPR soldiers were killed and 6 wounded on that day near Gorlovka.

OSCE drone is reported in L/DPR airspace.

20 Feb is Ukrainian "day of memory of the heavenly hundred"

17 Feb. Ukrainian mortar and BMP-1 guns fire is reported south of Donetsk, 21 mortar shells fired. More Ukrainian shelling is later reported, 20 AGS grenades and 20 BMP-2 gun shots fired on Abakumov minepit area near Donetsk,and two mortar shells fired on Luganskoe village.

DPR head Denis Pushilin and Leonid Kracvchuk, former Ukrainian president and head of Ukrainian delegation at the contact group, appeared together and had some exchange on a Russian TV show. That may be the first such direct contact ever, at least in public (but little was agreed on...)

15 feb. Attempted assasination attempt on DPR commander Sergei Popov, call name "Dlinnyi". An explosive devices was planted in his vehicle and exploded when he was taking his daughter to a school. Both survived, with commander receiving multiple wounds to his legs, and daughter shell-shocked.

11 Feb. Opolchenie reports arrival of Ukrainian troops and heavy armor in areas near separation line, discuss concerns on prospects of a large scale Ukrainian attack.

6 Feb. DPR: "For the first time since the commencement of the Complex of Additional Measures (July 27, 2020), Ukrainian militants launched an artillery strike from 122-mm artillery, shelling residential areas of Staromikhaylovka settlement in the Donetsk direction, firing 12 shells. Against this background, we reserve the right to provide an adequate response to the actions of Ukrainian punishers to protect the population from Ukrainian terror. "

2 Feb. Ukrainian president Zelenskii signed a decree blocking three Ukrainian opposition TV channels NewsOne, Zik, 112 from broadcasting, financial transactions, cultural exchanges, transfer of intellectual rights and technology. Prior to this, US indicated "robust U.S. economic and military assistance to Ukraine", and support on "preventing disinformation" after the decree was signed.


29 Jan. Margarita Simonian in Donetsk: "Mother Russia, take Donbass home" (5:14,2:07). Peskov: Donbass joining Russia is not on the Kremlin's agenda. (Commenters: split on meaning).

23 Jan. DPR soldier is killed near Staromikhailovka by a munition dropped by Ukrainian drone.

22 Jan. One DPR soldier is killed and another wounded by Ukrainian shelling