2 Ukrainian Teens Injured by Grenade; Poroshenko Plans to Send National Guard to Front Line

June 18, 2016
President Petro Poroshenko speaks before National Guard troops at the training center in Kiev Region, June 18, 2016. Photo by Unian

Ukraine Day 852: LIVE UPDATES BELOW.

Yesterday’s live coverage of the Ukraine conflict can be found here.


An Invasion By Any Other Name: The Kremlin’s Dirty War in Ukraine


Massive Stomach Infection Outbreak in Ukraine; Hundreds Sickened, State of Emergency Declared in Izmail

At least 284 people have come to the hospital with stomach infections, including 166 children in the Odessa Region town of Izmail, Unian reports. Currently 141 persons have been hospitalized.
The outbreak occurred June 16 and has made numerous people sick. The town has been put under a state of emergency. There are 180 hospital beds and 100 in reserve in Izmailov. Neighboring towns are standing by prepared to assist with medical care.

Governor Mikheil Saakashvili met today with Ismail Mayor Andrei Abramchenko today to plan assistance for the emergency. He also toured the hospital and posted an account of his visit on his Facebook page.

He said the disease could have been spread after floods from recent heavy rains polluted drinking water sources, Obozrevatel’ reported.

Translation: Saakashvili has left for Izmail: he is overseeing the battle with the epidemic.

Translation: Very heavy rains have flooded Izmail: cars were virtually under water, critical level

Medics, police and border guards throughout the region have rushed to the affected area, bringing additional medications. Markets have been closed and water supplies placed under guard.

Translation: State of Emergency in Izmail: borders guards have put under guard open water sources.

Police have opened a criminal case to investigate the sudden outbreak of disease.

— Catherine A. Fitzpatrick 

2 Ukrainian Teens Injured by Grenade; Poroshenko Plans to Send National Guard to Front Line
The Anti-Terrorist Operation [ATO] reported today that Russian-backed fighters had fired 20 times at their positions with heavy artillery, Unian.net reported.
Militants used 82-mm artillery and and tanks to fire on Ukrainian positions at Krasnogorovka and near Maryinka.
They also fired on Mayorsk, Zaitsevo, Novogorodskoye and Avdeyevka with firearms, machine guns and grenade-launchers of various types, as well as on Nevelskoye and the Bukotvka coal mine.
Two Ukrainian teens born in 2006 were injured from a grenade they found in a square in Popasnaya, Lugansk Region, Unian reported.
The Lugansk Military and Civilian Administration said the teens were not seriously injured and after medics examined them they were released home.

Russian-backed militants fired at Ukrainian soldiers near Lobachevo and also on Stanitsa Luganskaya. 

In other news: 

o Yesterday, June 17, the “Normandy Quartet” (leadership of Germany, France, Russia and Ukraine), agreed on three areas where forces and weapons will be withdrawn from the line of contact, Unian.net reported.
Konstantin Eliseyev, deputy chief of the presidential administration said at a briefing in Kiev today that the presidents of France and Russia took part in the meeting along with advisors from the German chancellor’s office and himself.
He said 11 principles for keeping the warring sides apart had been established as well as removing weapons from the line of contact. He said the selection of the three regions will be a start that they hope to extend to other regions. The regions were not yet indicated.
Irina Gerashchenko, deputy speaker of the Verkhovna Rada or parliament was also at the meeting to attend the sub-group on humanitarian issues, Unian.net reported. She commented (translation by The Interpreter):

“This is impermissible — the increase in the number of shellings, the number of dead and wounded. Without a quiet regimen it is impossible to move forward to decide all the other questions.”

Stepan Potorak, Ukrainian defense minister, announced that since the start of the year, the Russian-backed militants had broken the ceasefire 7,000 times, and casualties were 623 Ukrainian soldiers, i.e. those killed and those wounded.
o During a visit to the National Guard training center in Kiev Region,  President Petro Poroshenko said that he would consider sending troops from the National Guard to the front line, Unian.net reported. In his speech, President Poroshenko said:

“Despite the fact that the National Guard, under the law, has other tasks, in the near future a meeting will take place on my assignment with the defense minister, the chief of staff and the commander of the National Guard.

We will make it possible for soldiers from the National Guard to go through, so to say, the ‘test of battle,’ that they would what it means to be ‘at the frontline,’ so they aren’t afraid of bullets.

I think we will find such an opportunity despite the fact that we remain an advocate of a peaceful turn of events.”

In fact, some volunteer battalions such as the Azov Battalion have already seen combat before they were then integrated into the National Guard in 2015.

— Catherine A. Fitzpatrick