Russian-terrorist forces in Donbas continue shelling the positions of Ukrainian troops and [civilian] settlements. During the past 24 hours, the positions of the ATO forces have been fired at from 82-mm and 120-mm mortars and AGS-17 “Plamya” automatic grenade launchers in the vicinity of Zolote, Donetske, and Novotoshkivske. During the attacks, small infantry groups of the enemy (10-15 people) made repeated attempts to penetrate the flanks and the rear of the battle formations of Ukrainian units holding defense in this direction, under the cover of mortars and intense small arms fire delivered by firing groups. In the course of these attempts, Ukrainian troops were forced to repeatedly engage in armed confrontations with the enemy and stop it by firing from their positions.
According to the IR group experts, the nature of the insurgent actions suggests that these enemy tactical groups were assigned a priority task – to capture Ukrainian servicemen. In our opinion, this [task] should force Ukrainian command to take measures and enhance the security of the rests and movements of military in the tactical rear of the troops.
On the Krymske and Sokilnyky stretch and in the vicinity of Shchastya and Stanytsia Luhanska, numerous “small groups” of terrorists continue to vigorously operate in the riverside shrubs (taking into account their method of operation, only a fraction can be considered a professionally trained sabotage and reconnaissance group, the majority has clearly not been adequately trained). The actions of these groups are accompanied by a heavy shelling of the Ukrainian positions from automatic heavy grenade launchers, mortars, and large-caliber machine guns.
Insurgents, using also heavy infantry weapons (primarily mortars and automatic heavy grenade launchers) and trying to provoke the return fire of ATO forces in the Luhansk – Rozsadky – Sanzharivka stretch, conducted reconnaissance by fire. The insurgents also used 120-mm mortars.
In addition, an insurgent mortar group (with 82-mm mortars) took up positions almost back-to-back with the settlement of Luhanske. Ukrainian servicemen were forced to open fire from infantry weapons, forcing the terrorists to move deeper into their battle formations.
In the Donetsk direction, terrorists actively used artillery (122-mm), mortars (82-mm and 120-mm in caliber), and armored vehicles. Ukrainian troop positions and strongholds came under fire in the vicinity of Opytne, Vodyane, Pervomaiske, Sjeverne, Avdiivka, and Pisky.
On the Mariinka – Krasnohorivka stretch, insurgents shelled the leading edge of the Ukrainian positions.
Terrorists shelled Tonenke with 120-mm mortars and 122-mm artillery from their firing positions near Spartak. Terrorists used a local church building as a sighting mark (which was holding a [church] service at the time). The neighboring Sjeverne has been shelled as well.
In the vicinity of Mariinka, the positions of Ukrainian troops were shelled by several insurgent tanks operating under cover of automatic heavy grenade launchers [AHGL] and mortar fire from positions that were set up in advance. At the same time, terrorist snipers fired at Ukrainian positions trying to prevent Ukrainian servicemen from using anti-tank weapons in retaliation.
In addition, enemy armored vehicles have been spotted in the area between Opytne and the southern suburbs of Avdiivka (3 tanks and 3–4 AFVs); they periodically leave the forefront positions outfitted earlier and conduct aimed fire at the positions of Ukrainian troops and civilian objects.
In the seaside (Mariupol) direction, insurgents shelled the positions of Ukrainian troops both in the vicinity of Shyrokyne and on the heights northwest of the village (using mortars, AHGLs, and 122-mm artillery). Insurgents used tanks that opened fire from a distance of up to 2 km at the advanced positions of Ukrainain troops several times during the past 24 hours near Shyrokyne, fearing the aimed return fire of Ukrainian anti-tank weapons.
Insurgents opened fire from small arms and 82-mm mortars onto the positions of the ATO forces near Hranitne (operated by an insurgent mortar battery).
During the past 24 hours the busiest areas of insurgent convoy movement were in the directions of Krasnodon – Luhansk, Luhansk – Krasnyi Luch, through Amvrosiivka to Starobesheve and Khartsyzsk, a district in Donetsk, as well as from Shakhtarsk towards Yenakiieve – Horlivka, through Makiivka and towards Donetsk. A sharp increase in the number of tankers has been observed in convoys heading towards Donetsk. A transfer of ammunition, weapons and equipment continues from Ilovaisk to the northern and north-eastern direction. A convoy has been observed near Alchevsk (16 vehicles); it included four vehicles identified as R-149BMR “Kushetka-B” (command and staff vehicle of operatives of the Russian Armed Forces).
Movement of military equipment and troops:
• In the Petrovskyi district of Donetsk, reinforcement of the local insurgent “garrison” has been observed – up to 100 new people arrived.
• Two new terrorist units have been observed near Mariinka: a unit with mortars (six 120-mm and six 82-mm 2B “Vasilek” mortars), several AFVs (eight vehicles, mostly APCs and armored reconnaissance and patrol vehicles) and trucks, the second unit – with six tanks (some of them are not combat-ready) and 15-16 AFVs (including MT-LB with ZU-23-2, BMP-2 and four BTR-80).
• In the vicinity of Panteleymonivka and Yasynuvata, insurgents continue to strenuously disguise armored vehicles transferred to the area. Camouflaged positions are set up, armored vehicles are dispersed around the area, mobile firing groups are formed (1 or 2, sometimes 3 to 4 tanks and a support group of 5-6 ACVs and an infantry group, at times including 2-3 mortars or 1-2 ZU-23- 2, installed on a vehicle). Terrorists operate in these groups on the stretch from Shumy to Mariinka.
• In the area of Dokuchajevsk – Olenivka, insurgents continue to reshuffle the tactical group deployed north of Dokuchajevsk. Movement of transport and armored vehicles has been observed.
• Six 2S1 “Carnation” 122-mm self-propelled howitzers arrived in Makiivka. Earlier, 4 camouflaged 2S3 “Acacia” [Akatsiya] 152-mm self-propelled howitzers have been recorded in the area.