"The debate over who fired the first shots in Avdiivka is not only ridiculous, it plays right into the hands of Vladimir Putin's propaganda machine," Whitmore says.
As reported by RFE/RL's Christopher Miller, Ukraine is getting ready to escalation of the Donbas hostilities.
The fighting in the vicinity of Avdiivka has been underway since late Saturday, Jan. 28.
After three days, Ukrainian soldiers managed to take enemy positions and improved their tactical set-up in the area. Unfortunately, casualties were reported among the military.
On Jan. 30, enemy strikes left the government-controlled town of Avdiivka without electricity, water and heat.
In the evening of Jan. 30, a state of emergency was declared in Avdiivka.
See more: Rescuers evacuate 132 persons including 70 children from Avdiivka, - Sate Emergency Service. PHOTOS
As reported by the anti-terrorist operation (ATO) Staff press center, militants carry out not stop attacks on Ukrainian positions near the town.
A regional coordination center to aid local population has been set up.
According to the National Police, six civilians had been wounded and 26 houses damaged as of morning, Feb. 1. A female body of a civilian was found in Avdiivka downtown on Feb. 1.
The Donetsk regional civil-military administration said the sides had agreed to cease fire until 5 p.m. Wednesday.