Kiev has notified the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission (SMM) of possible use of artillery in the conflict with the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics (DPR and LPR).
“We have properly informed the OSCE SMM, OSCE Kiev office and our Western partners through the Interior Ministry that we reserve our right to use artillery in case of an attack on our positions,” spokesman for the General Staff Vladislav Seleznyov said.
It is worth mentioning, Ukrainian security officers have been using artillery against the self-proclaimed republics of Donbass on and on even after the Minsk Agreements on the ceasefire were signed. Everyday artillery shelling damages houses and infrastructures, killing civilians. Last week alone, 28 civilians were killed in artillery shelling by Ukraine’s Armed Forces in the territory of the DPR. On August 4-5 in Minsk, Kiev sabotaged the signing of an earlier agreed on document on withdrawal of weaponry of less than 100mm caliber from the engagement line. With its new statement, Kiev legalizes use of artillery, as usually accusing the self-defense forces of ceasefire breaches and attacks.
Earlier, EADaily quoted spokesman for the DPR Defense Ministry Eduard Basurin as saying that early in the morning on August 10, Ukrainian troops attempted to breach the defense line of the DPR self-defense forces in the area of Starognatovka village, near Mariupol, after two-hours of artillery shelling from large-caliber weapons, missile systems, tanks and rocket launchers. Basurin said Ukrainian forces attacked their positions being well aware that the DPR self-defense forces had pulled back the weaponry of less than 100mm caliber. The attempt was failed: “At 5:30am, after artillery softening-up, Ukraine’s Armed Forces attempted to breach the defense line in the area of Belaya Kamenka, Telmanovo district. Meeting a resounding rebuff and losing two tanks, an armored vehicle and a vehicle with anti-tank guided missile, the adversary retreated.”
To recap, the DPR and LPR pulled back the weaponry of less than 100mm caliber in mid-July, leaving equipment only at “hot spots” that are most than others shelled by Ukraine’s forces.