Ukraine Day 1047: LIVE UPDATES BELOW.
Yesterday’s live coverage of the Ukraine conflict can be found here.
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Three Ukrainian soldiers were wounded in the Donbass yesterday, as Kiev reports 45 attacks by Russia-backed forces.
According to this morning’s report from the Ukrainian military, Russia-backed forces used mortars to shell Talakovka, just outside Mariupol, and Krasnogorovka, west of Donetsk.
Grenade-launcher and small-arms attacks were reported in Shirokino, Starognatovka, Talkovka, Pavlopol, Gnutovo and Vodyanoye.
Ivan Chmil, press officer for the Ukrainian military operation in the Mariupol area, told local news site 0629.com.ua that there had also been several sniper attacks.
Sniper fire was also reported in the Avdeyevka area by the Ukrainian military in Avdeyevka, northeast of Donetsk, and Novozvanovka, west of Gorlovka.
Some of the most intense fire was reported on this section of the front line, stretching between Donetsk Airport and Troitskoye, east of Bakhmut (formerly Artyomovsk), with mortar and grenade-launcher attacks reported near Avdeyevka, Verkhnetoretskoye, Krutaya Balka (where a soldier was killed on Wednesday), Zaytsevo, Luganskoye and Troitskoye.
The situation in Avdeyevka and Troitskoye for civilians has been worsened in recent weeks by disruption to water supplies, caused by shelling.
On December 26, a team from the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine (SMM) visited Troitskoye, where they recorded shelling damage to residential areas and were informed by the head of the district administration that there had been no water or electricity in the town since December 21.
On Wednesday, one Ukrainian soldier was killed and two wounded when a MON-50 anti-personnel mine exploded as they attempted to disarm it.
According to Yevgen Lavrov, a soldier in the 25th Independent Mechanized Infantry Battalion, doctors said that both the wounded soldiers were expected to live, though one had lost a leg. Sapper Sergei Kabanov was killed instantly.
Novosti Donbassa reported this afternoon that Donbass Water had announced that engineers had not yet managed to bring water supplies fully back on line in Avdeyevka after two major water pipelines were ruptured by shelling on December 23.
Further east in the Lugansk region, the Ukrainian military reported today that Russia-backed forces had shelled Malinovoye, near Stanitsa Luganskaya, with mortars, and used grenade launchers in attacks near that town and Novozvanovka.
— Pierre Vaux