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 General Staff’s statement on Ilovaisk assault having been initiated by Interior Ministry is lies. Written orders confirm that volunteer battalions were hurried into action according to plan pre-approved by Chief of General Staff, - Butusov

армия выставка иловайск ilovaisk

Military documents refute the statement of the Chief of General Staff Viktor Muzhenko that the Ilovaisk assault was allegedly initiated by the Interior Ministry, while the army, in turn, was just rescuing the volunteer battalions soldiers involved in the operation a year ago.

Censor.NET Chief Editor Yurii Butusov wrote on Facebook.

"The orders which "never existed": the military prosecutor's office will receive the original operational orders of the ATO Command of Aug. 4 and 5, 2014 instructing the armed forces to storm Ilovaisk. Mykola Kolesnyk handed me important documents at a press conference yesterday, which were not included in the investigation into Ilovaisk entrapment: these were operational orders that commander of the B sector of the anti-terrorist operation Lieutenant General Ruslan Khomchak gave to the 40th Territorial Defense Battalion. He handed them over during a press conference, so that some of the documents were shown to reporters," Butusov wrote.

According to him, the orders were another proof exposing the lies of Chief of General Staff Viktor Muzhenko and his PR people, who claimed that Ilovaisk was allegedly stormed by volunteer battalions alone at the initiative of the Interior Ministry, while the army, they said, was just rescuing them.

"In fact, all the documents refute this. The operational documents are classified. Therefore, if one possesses information about the orders, one can only submit it in the court. However, the officers of the 40th Battalion published these orders now of all times - a year since the Ilovaisk tragedy, in order to express their outrage by the lies of the generalship. The military command has not provided these documents to the investigation," Butusov declared.

Read more: Chief of Staff Muzhenko has not replied to key questions on Ilovaisk tragedy, - Ukrainian Army Officer

The journalist quotes separate fragment of the corresponding order.

The original operational order dated Aug. 5, 2014 reads: "The 40th Territorial Defense Battalion in conjunction with the third armor group of the 51st separate mechanized brigade ordered to conduct raids in the direction of Starobesheve, Novokaterynivka, and Ilovaisk Aug. 7 in the morning, secure and liberate the city of Ilovaisk from terrorists until the end of the day to establish full control over the city and capture seven platoon strongholds north and east of Ilovaisk together with detachments of the third armor group of the 51st Separate Mechanized Brigade... "

"The whole package of operational orders given to the 40th Battalion regarding Ilovaisk has been rescued from the entrapment. Now it is another piece of evidence. There is handwritten signature of cipher officer in the original document which makes it easy to identify it," the journalist stressed.

"I personally have not still figured out who gave orders regarding Ilovaisk ... Most of the orders were given verbally at that time," Butusov quoted presidential adviser Biriukov. "Well, the Kryvbas Battalion has handed over the orders to help all officials restore the events. Everything can be figured out if one stops lying," Butusov noted.

Read more: Presidential adviser Biriukov: "No one knows who gave orders in Ilovaisk"

According to him, Commander of B sector Khomchak could not obviously have planned military operation without the consent of the ATO commander. "This is out of the question. Because only Commander of the anti-terrorist operation in the territory of the Luhansk and Donetsk regions Viktor Muzhenko could give the order to redeploy army detachments. This is his exclusive right envisaged by the Regulation on the ATO conduction dated May 28, 2014."

"By the way, the authorities' spin doctors have invented stories that the volunteer detachments have allegedly launched offensive on Ilovaisk on their own, because they were instructed to do so by Korban or the Interior Ministry at the meeting. "I was already appointed Chief of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine then; I was the first deputy head of the Anti-Terrorist Center and was in charge of the Armed Forces within the Anti-Terrorist Center headquarters. The initiative to secure Ilovaisk in the Anti-Terrorist Center came from the Interior Ministry..." Muzhenko said in an interview with Ukrainska Pravda.

"The meeting with Korban was held late in the evening Aug. 5, and all the participants have refuted this lie. But now there is also a document to disprove it: the 40th Battalion received the operational order to attack Ilovaisk by the Armed Forces Aug.5 at 12:30 p.m. - before the meeting with Korban. There was also an order to carry out reconnaissance in the direction of Ilovaisk, which was in fact handed to the commander of the 40th Battalion Aug. 4 at 6:50 p.m. That was well in advance of any meeting in the Dnipropetrovsk Regional State Administration," Butusov noted.

Read more: Losses of Ukrainian Army in Ilovaisk entrapment may amount up to 1,000 people, - Investigatory Commission Head Senchenko

"The truth is that Khomchak attended the meeting in the Dnipropetrovsk Regional State Administration because he required logistics to support combat operations, which from the very beginning of the ATO was provided by the regional administration. He was also working out coordination with volunteer battalions, because he understood that the available force may be insufficient while he had no other reserves.

"The operational orders confirm that there were no independent actions of the army command and volunteer battalions were hurried into action according to the plan pre-approved by Chief of General Staff Viktor Muzhenko. We will submit all these documents to the Chief Military Prosecutor's Office tomorrow. It will be additional proof during the trial of those guilty in the deaths of hundreds of Ukrainian soldiers during the breakthrough from the encirclement," Butusov summed up.

 
 
 
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