MOSCOW, February 23. /TASS/. Ukraine’s army shelled settlements in the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic /DPR/ 29 times over the past 24 hours, Eduard Basurin, a spokesman for DPR’s defence ministry said on Sunday.
"Over the past 24 hours, as many as 29 episodes of shelling at out districts were registered. Related information was referred to the Joint Center for Control and Coordination /JCCC/ of ceasefire issues and situation stabilization," he said. "The bulk of shelling reports came from the vicinity of the Donetsk airport and nearby settlement. Ukrainian troops opened fire here 21 times."
Also, Basurin said DPR’s positions had been shelled from the positions of Ukraine’s battalion Azov. In his words, DPR militias had been shelled near the settlement of Shirokino overnight to Sunday. "From five in the morning, storm fire was opened at our positions from the Azov positions west of Shirokino. One militiaman was killed and two more were wounded," he said.
According to the DPR defence ministry spokesman, it is planned to organize on February 24-25 an operation to evacuate dead bodies of Ukrainian troops from the Donetsk airport. The operation will be conducted in the presence of representatives of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe /OSCE/ and the International Committee of the Red Cross.
Basurin said that the DPR authorities were focusing efforts on the soonest restoration of settlement. "Special attention is paid to Debaltsevo, where the Ukrainian army has deliberately destroyed the entire utilities infrastructure. We have already told about their mining electricity substations, boiler houses and the water supplies system. We have managed to demine many facilities," he added.
Earlier on Monday, monitors of the Special Monitoring Mission /SMM/ of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe /OSCE/, who had visited the town of Debaltsevo in eastern Ukraine, said the town was on a brink of a humanitarian catastrophe.
"We stayed there yesterday for about 30 minutes. We saw not a single building not damaged by shells, not a single intact building. There is no water, no food, no heat, no electricity, no medicines in the town," Irina Gudyma, a mission’s representative, told TASS.