Ukraine Day 916: LIVE UPDATES BELOW.
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On Sunday the Ukrainian military reported a large spike in ceasefire violations over the previous 24 hours. According to Ukraine, Russian-backed fighters broke the ceasefire 71 times over that period. Ukraine Today reports:
26 ceasefire violations were recorded in the Donetsk sector, where the militants fired 120mm- and 82mm-calibre mortars, grenade launchers and small guns. In the Mariupol sector, the Russian-backed separatist forces launched 38 attacks against Ukrainian positions.
Increased number of attacks reported in eastern Ukraine
Ukrainian military scouts train in Donetsk region, August 18, 2016. (UNIAN Photo) Ukrainian military press centre reports on the situation Ukraine has reported the increase in attacks by Russian-backed separatist forces in the east of the country. The military press centre has said the militants fired at Ukrainan army positions 71 times over the last 24 hours.
Unian adds more detail:
“The most intense situation was in the area of Avdiyivka – the northern suburbs of Horlivka, where the enemy fired 120mm and 82mm mortars, grenade launchers of various types and small arms, and with the onset of the evening militants carried out a series of attacks on Avdiyivka using heavy artillery. Two dozen 152mm, and more than four dozen 122mm shells, were launched at Ukrainian positions,” a statement read.
Furthermore, Ukrainian positions near Krasnohorivka were attacked with 122mm caliber weapons. The militants shelled Avdiyivka with infantry fighting vehicles, and Ukrainian villages of Kirove and Svitlodarsk – with 82mm mortars.
The highest number of attacks, 38, was recorded in the Mariupol sector.
ATO HQ: Russian proxies attack Ukraine 71 times in past day
Additionally, the enemy violated the ceasefire 26 times in the Donetsk sector. "The most intense situation was in the area of Avdiyivka – the northern suburbs of Horlivka, where the enemy fired 120mm and 82mm mortars, grenade launchers of various types and small arms, and with the onset of the evening militants carried out a series of attacks on Avdiyivka using heavy artillery.
Militants continue attacking Ukrainian positions in Donbas
Half of the cases of ceasefire violations occurred in the Donetsk sector. The militants used heavy artillery banned by the Minsk agreements to attack the Ukrainian army strongholds in Avdiyivka. They also fired various caliber mortars, rocket-propelled grenades and heavy machine guns at the Ukrainian positions in Novoselivka Druha and Luhanske.
Meanwhile, the team leader of the Joint Centre for Control and Coordination (JCCC) of the Ceasefire and Stabilization of the Parties’ Demarcation Line reported that their team was attacked by Russian-backed fighters on August 20 near Svitlodarsk, the northwestern frontier of the Russian-backed separatists. The JCCC was established as a joint task force, made up of advisors from both the Ukrainian and Russian officials, to monitor the ceasefire implementation and coordinate with the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), the international body which is also monitoring the ceasefire.
In June, Ukraine expelled the Chief of Staff of the Russian representatives from the JCCC over allegations that he was passing Ukrainian military positions on to the Russian-backed fighters. This weekend, the JCCC announced that it had observed Russian-backed fighters firing on Mariupol nearly every single day.
— James Miller