DONETSK, July 8. /TASS/. Ukraine’s Armed Forces over the past 24 hours 44 times violated ceasefire as they shelled the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR), the republic’s command told the Donetsk News Agency on Saturday.
"Over the past 24 hours, the Ukrainian Armed Forces 44 times violated ceasefire as they used mortars, tanks, infantry fighting vehicles, armored vehicles, grenade launchers and small arms against the republic’s 16 settlements," the command said.
On June 21, Martin Sajdik, the special envoy of the OSCE chairman-in-office said ‘peace and quiet order’ would cover the entire harvesting season from June 24 through to August 31 and therefore the parties to the Minsk talks decided to call it a ‘bread ceasefire’.
Ceasefires have been declared many a time in Donbass since the spring of 2014, when the armed civil conflict broke out in eastern Ukraine. The conflicting sides agreed them at beginning of school year, before Christmas, before Easter, on the eve of the Children’s Day and so on. Officials voiced hopes the ceasefires would grow into indefinite ones but none of the declared periods of truce would last long - the shelling resumed after a couple of weeks, in a few days or even hours.
The head of the OSCE’s Special Monitoring Mission (SMM) in Ukraine, Alexander Hug, in his recent report pointed to the failure to comply with the ceasefire provisions and to pull back the weaponry. SMM reported a total of 45 civilians died because of armed actions in Donbass from January 1 through mid-June and another 216 were wounded. This is a double growth year-on-year, Hug said. In 2016, 23 people died and another 84 were wounded.