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Ukraine: Latest from the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine (SMM), based on information received as of 19:30, 15 May 2019

Source: Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe Country: Ukraine
This report is for the media and the general public. Summary Compared with the previous reporting period, the SMM recorded more ceasefire violations in both Donetsk and Luhansk regions. The SMM heard outgoing fire close to its position near the Donetsk Filtration Station. Small-arms fire was directed at an SMM mini-unmanned aerial vehicle near non-government-controlled Bila Kamianka. The Mission observed weapons in violation of withdrawal lines in non-government-controlled areas of Luhansk region. It spotted anti-tank mines for the first time between Krasnohorivka and Staromykhailivka. The SMM facilitated and monitored adherence to the ceasefire to enable repairs to, and the operation of, critical civilian infrastructure. Restrictions of the SMM’s access continued in all three disengagement areas and elsewhere. The Mission’s freedom of movement was also restricted at a non-government-controlled checkpoint near Bezimenne in southern Donetsk region.* Ceasefire violations In Donetsk region, the SMM recorded more ceasefire violations, including, however, fewer explosions (about 190), compared with the previous reporting period (about 310 explosions). The majority of ceasefire violations were recorded at south-easterly and southerly directions of Chermalyk (government-controlled, 31km north-east of Mariupol) and southerly, westerly and northerly directions of Horlivka (non-government-controlled, 39km north-east of Donetsk). During the evening of 14 May, the SMM camera at the Donetsk Filtration Station (DFS) (15km north of Donetsk) again recorded ceasefire violations in its vicinity, including two undetermined explosions and 44 projectiles in flight at an assessed range of 0.5-1.5km south, south-south-west and south-south-east (for similar observations, see SMM Daily Report 15 May 2019). During the day on 15 May, positioned in Shyrokyne (government-controlled, 20km east of Mariupol), the SMM heard and saw 90 shots of small-arms fire at an assessed range of 150-200m south-south-east, assessed as live-fire training exercise inside the security zone, in violation of the decision of the Trilateral Contact Group of 3 March 2016 that prohibits the conduct of live-fire training in the security zone. In Luhansk region, the Mission recorded more ceasefire violations, including 15 explosions, compared with the previous reporting period (ten explosions). The majority of ceasefire violations were recorded at north-easterly, south-westerly and westerly directions of Holubivske (non-government-controlled, 51km west of Luhansk). While on the northern edge of Popasna (government-controlled, 69km west of Luhansk), the SMM heard and saw two explosions, assessed as impacts of rounds of undetermined weapons, at an assessed range of 1-2km south. Outgoing fire close to SMM near DFS On the morning of 15 May, an SMM patrol was positioned on road H20 about 2km south-east of Kamianka (government-controlled, 20km north of Donetsk) and about 3.5km north-west of the DFS to monitor the security situation. Despite security guarantees that a localized ceasefire would be adhered to, the SMM heard three explosions assessed as rounds of outgoing fire of undetermined weapons at an assessed range of 100-300m west of its position. The SMM immediately left the area. There were no injuries to the SMM and its property was undamaged. (See SMM Spot Report 15 May 2019). Small-arms fire directed at SMM mini-unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) near Bila Kamianka On 15 May, while conducting a mini-UAV flight about 3km east of Starohnativka (government-controlled, 51km south of Donetsk), the SMM heard ten bursts of small-arms fire 2.5-3km east, assessed as aimed at the UAV, which was flying about 2.7km east of its position over an area near Bila Kamianka (non-government-controlled, 51km south of Donetsk). The SMM safely landed the UAV.* Disengagement areas Aerial imagery available to the SMM revealed the presence, on 13 May, of an armoured combat vehicle (ACV) and two probable ACVs near a checkpoint of the Ukrainian Armed Forces about 160m north of the northern edge of the disengagement area near Zolote (government-controlled, 60km west of Luhansk), as well as seven craters assessed as caused by impacts of undetermined weapons about 120m west of its western edge. On the morning of 15 May, positioned 1.5km south-west of Molodizhne (non-government-controlled, 63km north-west of Luhansk), the SMM heard two undetermined explosions at an assessed range of 1-2km north, assessed as outside the Zolote disengagement area. During the same day, positioned about 2km north of Petrivske (non-government-controlled, 41km south of Donetsk), the SMM heard and saw an explosion, assessed as the impact of a round of an undetermined weapon, at an assessed distance of 1km south-west (assessed as outside the disengagement area). Positioned inside the disengagement area near Stanytsia Luhanska (government-controlled, 16km north-east of Luhansk), the Mission observed a calm situation. Withdrawal of weapons The SMM continued to monitor the withdrawal of weapons in implementation of the Memorandum and the Package of Measures and its Addendum. In violation of withdrawal lines Non-government-controlled areas 14 May An SMM long-range UAV spotted: 13 self-propelled howitzers (2S1 Gvozdika, 122mm), six towed howitzers (D-30 Lyagushka, 122mm) and five anti-tank guns (MT-12 Rapira, 100mm) in a training area near Buhaivka (37km south-west of Luhansk); two self-propelled howitzers (2S1) and four towed howitzers (D-30) in Bile (22km west of Luhansk); and six multiple launch rocket systems (BM-21 Grad, 122mm) in a training area near Myrne (28km south-west of Luhansk). An SMM mini-UAV spotted three tanks (T-64) near residential houses in Stepanivka (62km west of Luhansk). Beyond the withdrawal lines but outside of designated storage sites Government-controlled areas 14 May An SMM mini-UAV spotted 12 towed howitzers (2A65) and four anti-tank guns (MT-12) at a railway station in Rubizhne (84km north-west of Luhansk). 15 May The SMM saw four surface-to-air missile systems (9K37) at a railway station in Rubizhne. Non-government-controlled areas 14 May An SMM long-range UAV spotted: 21 tanks (probable T-64), six towed mortars (type undetermined, 120mm calibre) and seven surface-to-air missile systems (9K35 Strela-10) in a training area near Buhaivka (see above); five self-propelled howitzers (2S1), two pieces of towed artillery (types undetermined) and 12 tanks (T-72, one missing its barrel) in a training area near Shymshynivka (27km south-west of Luhansk); 29 tanks (one T-72 and 28 typed undetermined) in B 20 tanks (15 T-72 and five undetermined), eight self-propelled howitzers (2S1) and 12 towed mortars (types undetermined) in a training area near Myrne (see above); 20 tanks (types undetermined) at a training area near Kruhlyk (31km south-west of Luhansk); and 18 towed howitzers (ten 2A65 Msta-B, 152mm and eight 2A36 Giatsint-B, 152mm) near Khrustalnyi (54km south-west of Luhansk). An SMM mini-UAV again spotted three tanks (T-72) near Kalynove (60km west of Luhansk). 15 May The SMM saw three tanks (T-72) in a training area near Ternove (57km east of Donetsk). Weapons that the SMM could not verify as withdrawn At heavy weapons holding areas beyond the respective withdrawal lines in government-controlled areas of Luhansk region 15 May The SMM noted that 15 towed howitzers (D-30), 21 self-propelled howitzers (2S1) and six anti-tank guns (MT-12) were present, and that 23 self-propelled howitzers (2S3 Akatsiya, 152mm) and nine tanks (T-72) remained missing. Weapons permanent storage site At a permanent storage site in a government-controlled area of Luhansk region 15 May The SMM noted that 33 tanks (six T-72 and 27 T-64), a towed howitzer (D-44, 85mm), two anti-tank guns (D-48, 85mm) and 17 mortars (12 2B9 Vasilek, 82mm, three 2B14 Podnos, 82mm and two BM-37) remained missing. Indications of military and military-type presence in the security zone Government-controlled areas 13 May Aerial imagery available to the SMM revealed the presence of an ACV and two probable ACVs near a checkpoint of the Ukrainian Armed Forces in the vicinity of the disengagement area near Zolote (see above). 15 May The SMM saw, on two occasions, an infantry fighting vehicle (IFV) (BTR-4) near Novobakhmutivka (28km north of Donetsk). Non-government-controlled areas 14 May An SMM long-range UAV spotted: a probable ACV near Veselohorivka (64km west of Luhansk); 21 IFVs (BMP-1) and three armoured personnel carriers (APC) (two BTR-70 and an MT-LB) in a compound near Kruhlyk (65km south-west of Luhansk); and an APC in Stare (formerly Chervonyi Prapor, 58km west of Luhansk). An SMM mini-UAV spotted an ACV near Kalynove. Mines seen for the first time between Krasnohorivka and Staromykhailivka On 13 May, an SMM mid-range UAV spotted for the first time 15 anti-tank mines across a road east of Krasnohorivka (government-controlled, 21km west of Donetsk) leading to non-government-controlled areas. About 700m east of the aforementioned mines, the same UAV spotted for the first time 55 anti-tank mines laid out in two rows extending 50m across the northern and southern sides of the same road and into adjacent fields. About 1km east of the latter mines, the same UAV spotted for the first time 20 anti-tank mines laid out in three rows extending 15m across the northern and southern sides of the same road and into adjacent fields in the western outskirts of Staromykhailivka (non-government-controlled, 15km west of Donetsk). On 14 May, an SMM mid-range UAV again spotted four anti-tank mines (probable TM-62) laid across road T-0519 on the western outskirts of Pikuzy (formerly Kominternove, non-government-controlled, 23km north-east of Mariupol). Around 2km west of Krynychne (non-government-controlled, 45km west of Luhansk), the SMM saw for the first time a red metal mine hazard sign with “Stop Mine” written in Russian language attached to a wooden post in a field about 1m south of a local road. SMM facilitation of repairs to civilian infrastructure The SMM facilitated and monitored adherence to the ceasefire to enable repairs to the Petrivske pumping station near Artema (government-controlled, 26km north of Luhansk), as well as to water pipelines near Zolote and between Zolote-2/Karbonit (government-controlled, 62km west of Luhansk), Zolote-3/Stakhanovets (government-controlled, 61km west of Luhansk) and Popasna. The Mission continued to facilitate the operation of the DFS and heard explosions near its position (see above). It also monitored the security situation in the area of the pumping station near Vasylivka (non-government-controlled, 20km north of Donetsk) and positioned in the vicinity of the pumping station during the day it heard ceasefire violations. Border areas not under government control On 13 May, while at a border crossing point near Uspenka (73km south-east of Donetsk) for about 30 minutes, the SMM saw eight cars (five with Ukrainian licence plates, as well as three with “DPR” plates), two covered cargo trucks and a bus (all with Russian Federation licence plates) and 20 pedestrians entering Ukraine, as well as three cars (one with Ukrainian and one with Russian Federation licence plates, as well as one with “DPR” plates) and 31 trucks (30 with covered cargo and one 19 with Ukrainian and three with Russian Federation licence plates, as well as nine with “DPR” plates) exiting Ukraine. On 15 May, while at a border crossing point near Marynivka (78km east of Donetsk) for about an hour, the SMM saw 20 cars (three with Ukrainian, nine with Russian Federation and one with Polish licence plates, as well as seven with “DPR” plates), a covered cargo truck (with Ukrainian licence plates) and nine pedestrians entering Ukraine, as well as 24 cars (two with Ukrainian, nine with Russian Federation and one with Georgian licence plates, as well as 12 with “DPR” plates), two covered cargo trucks (one with Belarusian licence plates, as well as one with “LPR” plates) and four buses (with “DPR” plates) exiting Ukraine. People apply for passports of the Russian Federation in Luhansk and Donetsk regions In non-government-controlled areas of Luhansk region, the SMM again observed about 60 people (mixed gender and ages) in a queue in front of a building in Antratsyt (55km south-west of Luhansk). Several people waiting told the SMM that they had been queuing to submit applications for passports of the Russian Federation. In non-government-controlled areas of Donetsk region, the SMM observed a queue of ten people inside a building in Dokuchaievsk (30km south-west of Donetsk) who told the SMM that they were waiting to submit applications for passports of the Russian Federation. The SMM saw an information board outside the aforementioned building as well as handouts explaining the procedures to submit applications for “DPR” “passports” and passports of the Russian Federation. The SMM continued monitoring in Kherson, Odessa, Lviv, Ivano-Frankivsk, Kharkiv, Dnipro, Chernivtsi and Kyiv.


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