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 Escalation near Ukrainian Zaitseve village: one Ukrainian soldier killed, four injured over five days

Russian occupation troops have been fiercely shelling Ukrainian troops holding the front near the village of Zaitseve in the Donetsk region. The enemy employed prohibited 120-mm mortars and 122-mm howitzers blatantly violating Minsk cease-fire deal.

Censor.NET Chief Editor Yurii Butusov wrote on Facebook.

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"The enemy has been providing accurate fire on our positions over the past five days. The enemy adjusts fire launching about 50-60 shells and mines at individual positions at once. The Ukrainian detachment defending the area incurs losses due to constant artillery strikes. One Ukrainian soldier has been killed, four injured, several pieces of equipment damaged over five days. The morale of our detachment is high, everything is controllable, the command of the unit acts properly under the circumstances," he wrote.

"However, the C sector command still bans retaliation fire on artillery and mortar positions of the enemy, citing the inability to violate terms of the cease-fire agreements. Thus, the attacks are carried out with impunity. Unfortunately, the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission (SMM) has not managed to reach Zaitseve, thus, it has not recorded or reported any cases of violation of peace agreements by the Russian Federation. I urge the OSCE to find possibility to send its observers to the shelled area. Our soldiers cannot comprehend why the Russian invaders do not receive fire in response. This allows the enemy to conduct long-term artillery attacks, adjust the fire, knowing that changing position is needless," Butusov wrote.

Read more: EU sanctions against Russia to continue until it fully implements Minsk deal, German Chancellor says

"I call on to draw the attention of the Defense Ministry to the illegal passivity of the sector command concerning the use of artillery against the illegal groups violating the terms of the cease-fire deal in the vicinity of Zaitseve. Obviously, this is due to the fact that senior officials in Kyiv lack appropriate assessment of the tactical situation near Zaitseve. Decisions must be taken by someone who is not afraid of taking responsibility and will not hide from it, as it is now," the journalist wrote.

"Zaitseve village is of great tactical importance being located in proximity to Horlivka, while Ukrainian control of this village poses threat to the Horlivka gang. It is obvious that the enemy probes the Ukrainian army response to the provocation. This is typical tactics of the Russian troops in the war in the Donbas. They determine a vulnerable point and a center of resistance at the front. Then they concentrate force and begin conducting long preparation fire to demoralize our detachments. If our command does not strengthen the front section and the enemy does not receive hard retaliation and reinforcement does not arrive, the enemy begins encircling the defense with task groups of motivated mercenaries. That is, they act according to the situation taking into account the strength of our resistance," he added.

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"I think it is worth showing the Russian command that this scenario would take its toll in 2016. The enemy keeps conducting reconnaissance and fire adjustment. These actions should be given a fitting rebuff. It's high time to hold those violating the peace agreements accountable," Butusov summed up.
 
 
 
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