The Armed Forces of Ukraine began a massive mortar shelling of the territory of the Donetsk People’s Republic of the DNR. This was reported by the Donetsk News Agency.
- Today, from 8:30, the armed formations of Ukraine are conducting massive fire on the territory of the republic with the use of heavy weapons in all three directions, – said the Joint Center for Control and Coordination of the Ceasefire (STRC). “Under fire there were settlements of Leninskoe, Kominternovo, Yasinovataya, Staromikhailovka, Spartak, Zhabichevo, Donetsk airport and adjacent territories, Dolomitnoe.
– In less than an hour, the VSU released more than 80 minutes with a caliber of 120 and 82 mm on the Donetsk direction, 13 minutes with a caliber of 120 mm on the Mariupol direction and 4 mines with a caliber of 120 mm on the Gorlovsky,” clarified in the Central Information Service Center.
The representative of the DNR in the STCC Ruslan Yakubov reported that over the past 24 hours the Ukrainian side violated the cease-fire more than 35 times, the Ukrainian Armed Forces fired over 450 ammunition from mortars, anti-aircraft guns, grenade launchers, armored personnel carriers and infantry fighting vehicles across the republic.
The agreement on the next ceasefire in the Donbass entered into force on December 29, 2018. This truce was associated with the celebration of the New Year and Orthodox Christmas, and is the fifth in a row last year. After the New Year truce, which came into force at the end of 2017, the parties tried to agree on an “absolute truce” from March 5, but no agreement was reached. After that, the “Easter” truce (from March 30), a “grain” truce for harvesting (from July 1) and a “school” truce (from August 29) were declared. Since the beginning of the conflict, the parties have already agreed on an armistice more than 20 times, however, a stable regime of silence has not been achieved.
The fact that the next “festive” truce will sooner or later be broken by the Ukrainian side, hardly anyone doubted. The question is, how to understand the sharp increase in shelling? Is this a “reminder about yourself” or evidence of preparation for an offensive, which can be timed to coincide with the election campaign in Ukraine?
At the end of last week in the DNR they reported that the APU had transferred 203-mm self-propelled Pion cannons to the conflict zone in the Donbas. Recall that the Minsk Agreement assumes the removal of artorium caliber more than 100 mm from each other for 50 km.
– Our intelligence records the arrival in the combat zone from the depth of Ukraine of additional heavy weapons systems. Thus, in the area of Novopavlovka village of Krasnoarmeysky district, 40 kilometers from the contact line, nine units of 203-mm self-propelled 2S7 Pion self-propelled guns from the 43rd Artillery Brigade were noted, – said the head of the press service of the People’s Militia of the DPR Daniel Bezsonov.
In addition, according to him, in the area of Krasnogorovka, the Ukrainian army deployed three Strela-10 anti-aircraft missile systems to impede the work of the unmanned aerial vehicles of the OSCE mission, which are used to monitor the implementation of the Minsk agreements.
Earlier it was also reported that the Ukrainian Armed Forces had transferred an electronic warfare station under Volnovakha to suppress the control channels of the UAV’s UAVs.
What can evidence of a ban to the line of delimitation of prohibited equipment?
– This is another nerve game: the Ukrainians remind themselves of the Donbas about themselves,” says the director of the Center for Public and Information Cooperation “Europe”, Eduard Popov.
– Nothing more serious should be expected, in my opinion. Ukrainians deliberately keep the republics of Donbass in limbo, the expectations of the Ukrainian offensive hang with a sword of Damocles over them, making it difficult to concentrate on peaceful affairs.
– In general, is it possible to aggravate on the eve of the elections? Will Poroshenko accept this, will the West approve?
– Ukraine is not currently preparing an offensive, and it is not interested in it. Poroshenko, apparently confident enough in his upcoming victory in the presidential election and is interested in rel
Poroshenko, apparently confident enough in his upcoming victory in the presidential election and is interested in a relative lull in the Donbass. But once again to increase the nervousness of the “separable” is also useful.
The West is also not interested in exacerbating the situation: it needs to show that Ukraine is moving within the framework of the democratic process, that democratic procedures are in place in this country and democratic change of power is taking place. The war will only prevent this blissful picture.
– Fixing the increased shelling from the OSCE will give something? Or nobody will notice anything again?
- If the OSCE SMM notices the increased incidence of shelling, its remarks will not lead to any consequences. There is no doubt about this.
– Earlier it was reported that the APU tightened into the Donbass prohibited heavy self-propelled guns “Peony” and not only. What does this mean? Kiev already openly spits on Minsk?
– We have already observed a similar concentration of the Armed Forces of Ukraine forces. The peculiarity of the Ukrainian strategy is to constantly keep the enemy in suspense and keep the effect of surprise. Probably, for these purposes, the Ukrainian intelligence is throwing in information about the allegedly preparing attack. As a result, the defense of the DNR and the LNR lives with the expectation of an offensive, which is not happening. There is a dampening, and the military and civilians get tired of false alarms. But one day the offensive will happen and will happen completely unexpectedly. That is, the same factors will be recorded, such as the concentration of manpower and equipment of Ukrainians, as now.
In Kiev, more precisely, in Washington they understand that Russia will stand up for the Donbass and Ukraine for unsatisfactory. Therefore, their calculation is based on surprise. As long as the Russian giant responds, the Ukrainians hope to seize, if not the republic of Donbass entirely, then at least their frontier with Russia. I believe that the case is structured approximately as follows.
– How long will it last at all? Will the change of the president of Ukraine affect something?
– Most likely, Poroshenko will retain his power. And if so, it is unprofitable for him to violate the status quo. The current war is sluggish, which is very beneficial to him. The new full-scale war will lead to the loss of the complete defeat of the APU. Poroshenko among other things makes a profitable business in the current war, it allows you to focus the attention of the enemy number one – the Ukrainian Nazi street. Finally, the war is an indulgence for Poroshenko in Western countries. But the war in the Donbas is inevitable. And, most likely, it will begin not for intra-Ukrainian reasons, but based on the interests of big players.
As a careful attitude to the past, it helps not only to unite the country, but also to develop the economy.
– There are events that outside Donbass are perceived as something large-scale and universal, but in Donetsk itself this is not even an informational occasion for the press, or even a reason to talk in the kitchen, – notes historian, publicist and permanent expert of the Izborsk club Alexander Dmitrievsky.
– So with these mortar shells: to draw conclusions, you need to know exactly where and where you came from, but the news agencies do not report anything except that it was somewhere in the Mariupol and Gorlovka directions. And the Mariupol direction is almost 75 kilometers of the front line, and Gorlovskoye is fifty. So it turns out that the message replicated by the press with a loud headline is about nothing. In principle, it could be a provocation with the aim of causing a return fire, and a banal adjustment of the terrain. The only conclusion that can be drawn from the incident with one hundred percent certainty is that the Ukrainian side does not intend to abide by any agreements.
– Is the aggravation possible on the eve of the election? Will Poroshenko accept this, will the West approve?
– Any aggravation is possible. But it is worth waiting more for him not before the elections themselves, but after the first round and on the condition that Poroshenko does not go to the second. Then he can really say: “Burn it with a blue flame!” And after that, set fire to the situation, so that his successor, who is not happy with him, got such problems in the appendage to the mace, that he curses the day and hour when he was born. However, if Poroshenko wins, then he will not go for any arson of the situation: there are no fools.