Comment by the Information and Press Department on developments in Donbass
We are receiving alarming news from Donbass. Observers of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission have recently noted a sharp increase in fire attacks along the demarcation line. In the past two weeks alone, they have recorded about 10,000 violations of the ceasefire regime, and heavy artillery systems are being fired once again. Kiev is amassing equipment and ammunition in the Donetsk and Lugansk regions and redeploying units, including the notorious punitive battalions, in the area. The Armed Forces of Ukraine are using drones as artillery spotters in violation of the Minsk Agreements, and they are moving deep inside the “grey zones.”
Yesterday, another heinous crime was perpetrated in Donetsk, with three explosions rocking the city. Two bombs exploded in direct proximity to the residential quarters of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission observers. Fortunately, no one was hurt.
According to eyewitness accounts posted in the media and social networks, this incident appears to be similar to the August 2018 terrorist attack that killed Alexander Zakharchenko. Kiev deliberately continues to destabilise the region, trying to intimidate local residents. All this fits into the logic of Petr Poroshenko’s election campaign, which is picking up momentum. President Poroshenko wants to divert the voters’ attention from socio-economic problems, widespread poverty, the flight of the economically active population from the country, the persecution of priests and believers of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church to hostilities in Donbass and blame Russia for Kiev’s own political failures. While playing this game, Kiev resorts to the most malicious provocations, trying to involve OSCE observers in these provocations and targeting them.
We urge Ukraine’s Western sponsors to bring its leaders to order and to dissuade them from audacious military undertakings that are fraught with disastrous consequences.