VIENNA, August 10. /ITAR-TASS/. Observers of the OSCE special monitoring mission in Ukraine who visited the east Ukrainian town of Shakhtyorsk on August 8 said the town seemed to be absolutely deserted with traces of heavy artillery shelling.
Shakhtyorsk is located 57 kilometers to the east of Donetsk and 21 kilometers to the north-west of Torez. The town was absolutely deserted and all shops were closed, the observers said in a report on their trip to Shakhtyorsk that took place on August 7-8. The local people told them they had water for two hours a day and that they had been without gas or electricity since July 27.
The observers fixed destruction, which looked very much like damage from artillery shells that were launched against the town on August 8. The report, however, did not say anything about who had fired the shells. Heavy fighting was reported near Shakhtyorsk earlier this week as the militias were repelling the attacks of Ukrainian troops.
An official website of Shakhtyorsk, which is dubbed the gem of the Donbas region, said the town had a population of 60,000 people in 2004.
The OSCE observers said the report did not include the description of the situation in Lugansk, which lacked electricity and Internet connection after 22 hour of incessant shelling. The OSCE employees noted, however, that banks were still operating in Donetsk and that people were standing in long queues to withdraw the money. The railway station was open though tickets from Donetsk to Kiev have been sold out for the next two days, the monitors said.
The report also said that protest actions against army mobilization had been seen in the town of Dergachi near Kharkov and in Pokrovskoye, 130 kilometers away from Dnepropetrovsk.