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DONETSK, August 20. /TASS/. The pro-Kiev military over the past night launched about 100 artillery shells and more than 160 mines at territory of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR), the republic’s defense authorities told the Donetsk News Agency on Saturday.
"From the evening of August 19 through to 01:00 (on August 20), the Ukrainian side was shelling settlement Trudovskiye west of Donetsk, Yelenovki near Dokuchayevsk, suburbs of Yasinovataya, settlements Kominternovo and Sakhanka," the source told the agency. "On those areas the military launched 100 artillery shells of 122mm caliber and 166 mines."
Besides heavy weapons and mortars, the Ukrainian armed units used weapons of IFVs, grenade launchers and small arms.
Members of the Contact Group for the settlement of the situation in the east of Ukraine at a meeting in Minsk on April 29 agreed on a complete ceasefire in Donbass starting from midnight on April 30. It is an eighth ceasefire agreement since the autumn of 2014. The sides however continue accusing each other of ceasefire violations.
Kiev’s security forces in the people’s militia responsibility zone have been repeatedly violating the truce, opening fire from mortars and tank weapons, which had to be withdrawn in accordance with the Minsk agreements.
The Package of Measures to fulfil the September 2014 Minsk agreements, known as Minsk-2, that was signed in Minsk on February 12, 2015, envisaged a ceasefire regime between Ukrainian government forces and people’s militias in the self-proclaimed republics in Donetsk and Lugansk (DPR and LPR) starting from February 15, 2015 and a subsequent withdrawal of heavy weapons from the line of engagement. The deal also laid out a roadmap for a lasting settlement in Ukraine, including local elections and constitutional reform to give more autonomy to the war-torn eastern regions.
On Friday, German Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Sawsan Chebli told reporters Germany’s government considers it necessary to go ahead with the efforts as part of the Normandy format (Russia, Ukraine, Germany, France) to implement the Minsk peace deal on Ukraine despite all challenges. "The talks on implementing Minsk are held at the level of experts on a regular basis. We hold by our opinion: despite the current difficult situation and all failures there is the need to make efforts and stay in the Normandy format to fulfill Minsk," Chebli said.
The diplomat reminded that German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier had earlier said he was not satisfied by how the deal signed in February 2015 was implemented, namely in the security area in Donbass and preparations for the local elections.