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As we have been writing all week, Russian-backed forces have repeatedly stepped up their attacks against Avdeyevka, north of Donetsk, home to a Ukrainian military position which was instrumental in defending the Donetsk Airport until it fell to the Russian-backed fighters over a year ago.
Today, that town has once again been heavily attacked. According to Unian.info, the office of the Ukrainian Anti-Terror Operation (ATO) reported that militants attempted to “storm” the town:
“Shelling does not cease near Avdiyivka. During the reported period, the enemy has launched fire six times using mortars, grenade launchers, machine guns and large-caliber firearms,” a statement reads.
Also, illegal armed groups tried to storm one of the strongholds of the ATO forces near Avdiyivka. Ukrainian servicemen had to open retaliation fire, forcing a sabotage and reconnaissance group of six militants to retreat. No casualties among Ukrainian forces have been reported, information on enemy casualties is being clarified, the press center said.
According to the ATO headquarters, in the Mariupol direction, militants used anti-tank guided missiles and 120mm caliber mortars to shell the ATO forces near Novotroitske.
According to Ukraine Today, “cannon artillery” has also been used against the Ukrainian military in the greater-Donetsk area for the first time in a very long time.
The combined Russian-separatist forces attacked Ukrainian army positions in eastern Ukraine 44 times in the past 24 hours, according to a report.
“In addition to mortars of calibers banned by the Minsk agreements, militants have again used cannon artillery, for the first time in a long period. The Ukrainian Armed Forces in the area of Zaitseve and Mayorsk were able to keep the defense after they had been attacked four times with 122-millimeter mortars,” the military press centre’s statement reads.
Russian-backed separatist forces use cannon artillery for first time in long period
Armed pro-Russian separatists walk on a street in the Zaytseve village of Donetsk area, Ukraine on March 14, 2016. (Getty Images) Situation in eastern Ukraine remains tense The situation in the combat zone in eastern Ukraine remains tense showing a tendency to aggravation, the military press centre reported.