KIEV, March 16. /ITAR-TASS/. Ukraine’s “24” television news channel said Ukraine is moving troops and armoured vehicles to the border with Russia.
The aired footage showed a railway train carrying tanks towards the border. The news report offered no hint where the picture was taken. The subtitle merely said that “military hardware is being moved towards Russia.”
In another episode the train was shown at an anonymous station. Tanks and armoured personnel carriers on open flatcars could be seen.
“Troops are being moved to Russia’s border, too,” the subtitle said.
According to local residents, the train arrived at the Kondrashevskaya Novaya station, 10 kilometres away from Lugansk, on March 15. There have been reports that civilians from nearby villages prevented the unloading of combat vehicles.
Some protesters used a shunting engine to pull the train into a siding and blocked the exit with heavy metal structures.
Most of the military on the train stayed calm and offered no resistance to the civilians.
At a certain point there was a brawl. A group of unbadged gunmen armed with automatic rifles attempted to force the military unit’s commander to “obey orders,” to drive the villagers back and to unblock the rail track. The clash with local civilians that followed ended inconclusively.
The military retreated. The protesters placed round-the-clock posts around the train to prevent the unloading of armoured vehicles.