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 Epicenter of Russian aggression shifted in Mariupol direction over last two weeks, - Turchynov visited ATO zone. PHOTOS

Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine Oleksandr Turchynov left for Mariupol sector due to a significant escalation of hostilities recorded primarily in this area of the anti-terrorist operation (ATO) zone in the past two weeks. He held a meeting with the ATO generalship there.

According to Turchynov, more than 3,000 projectiles hit the Ukrainian troops' positions in the Mariupol sector over the last week alone, Censor.NET reports citing the NSDC press service.

The NSDC secretary visited the areas of the fiercest enemy strikes on positions of the Ukrainian military at the forward defense line, including the outskirts of Kominternove, Lebedynske, and Vodiane - the epicenter of the recent enemy artillery strikes.

The recent developments at the front line and measures to efficiently counter provocations of the Russian terrorist forces were discussed at the meeting. The NSDC secretary inspected procurement and the staff's preparedness to carry out combat missions in winter.

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According to Turchynov, the situation in the ATO area, especially in Mariupol direction, is very tense: "The greatest number of provocations and intensity of the attacks is being recorded in the vicinity of Marinka, Krasnohorivka, Vodiane and Shyrokyne. The Russian aggressor did not stop committing attacks on Ukrainian positions even during the negotiations in the Normandy format," the secretary said adding that the Russian artillery continued shelling Ukrainian troops' positions as he was visiting Vodiane and the strongholds close to aggressor-occupied Kominternove.

"Such actions of the Russian terrorist groups show the hypocrisy and meanness of Putin's statements at the international peace talks and clearly define the limits of his 'sincere desire to resolve the conflict'," Turchynov emphasized.

See more: "Budapest Memorandum was just piece of paper nobody really wanted to observe," - Turchynov. PHOTOS

The official did not rule out that the peace initiative of the Russian side was "just a cover for escalation of the military confrontation."

"Ukrainian servicemen are ready for any developments. The positions at the contact line have been strengthened and winterized. All attempts of the Russian terrorist groups to break through our defense lines are doomed," the NSDC secretary summed up.

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