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Ministry: Kiev’s military violate ceasefire, drop 69 shells on Donetsk republic

August 22, 2015, 13:34 UTC+3 MOSCOW
"On settlements in the republic they fired 59 mines of 82 and 120mm calibre and ten tank shells," the Donetsk News Agency quoted the ministry’s representative
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MOSCOW, August 22. /TASS/. Kiev’s military over past 24 hours for seven times violated the ceasefire regime, defence ministry of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) said on Saturday.

"On settlements in the republic they fired 59 mines of 82 and 120mm calibre and ten tank shells," the Donetsk News Agency quoted the ministry’s representative. "During the past 24 hours, we registered seven violations of the ceasefire."

Under the fire were Gorlovka, the Donetsk airport, Ozeryanovka, Zhelezhnaya Balka, Staraya Laspa, Belaya Kamenka and Spartak. The Ukrainian military’s positions were located in Novgorodskoye, Avdeyevka, Novogrigorovka and Starognatovka.

"Ukraine’s armed forces continue relocation, drawing of additional units to the front line," the defence ministry said.

Situation around Ukraine's crisis

A peace deal struck on February 12 in Minsk, Belarus, by the leaders of Russia, Ukraine, Germany and France envisaged a ceasefire between Ukrainian forces and people’s militias starting from February 15, followed by withdrawal of heavy weapons from the line of military engagement and prisoner release.

The package of measures envisages the pullback of all heavy weapons by both parties to locations equidistant from the disengagement line in order to create a security zone at least 50 kilometres wide for artillery systems with a calibre of 100 mm or more, a zone of security 70 kilometres wide for multiple rocket launchers and a zone 140 kilometres wide for multiple rocket launchers Tornado-S, Uragan and Smerch and the tactical rocket systems Tochka-U.

The final document says that the Ukrainian troops are to be pulled back away from the current line of engagement and the militias of the Donetsk and Lugansk regions, from the engagement line set by the Minsk Memorandum of September 19, 2014.

The DPR (Donetsk People’s Republic) completed the withdrawal of its heavy weapons by March 1. Nevertheless, in recent days populated localities in the Donetsk People’s Republic have come under intensive shelling from the positions of the Ukraine army, which is using heavy artillery and multiple rocket launcher systems.

Observation of the ceasefire regime depends fully on the Ukrainian side, the self-proclaimed DPR and LPR (Lugansk People’s Republic) say.

According to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), the violence in Ukraine has killed 6,500 people in the past year, wounded 16,000 and left 5 million people in need of humanitarian aid. With more than 1.3 million registered IDPs, Ukraine has now the ninth largest number of internally displaced in the world, according to the Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre.

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