January 20 Battle Update: Peski and Avdeevka fighting, Right Sector suffers losses.

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1/20/2015

Novorossia News, Morning 1/20/2015 [Excerpts]

Translated from Russian by J.Hawk

09:42. Ukrainians still claiming a breakthrough into Donetsk—that’s
false.

Positions on the Avdeevka sector have come to life, they
are firing toward Putilovka. Something has burned for a long time in Peski
after our artillery bombardment, probably a Right Sector bus, or some other
piece of junk.

From radio intercepts. Peski: Ukrainians have 27 killed,
around 60 wounded. Preparing to withdraw. Avdeevka: Ukrainians are begging for
help, signs of panic.

A continuous firefight in the north. Ukrainians are pushing
into Peski, mostly the Right Sector is dying there.

Meteorological tower: fighting. Avdeevka: our troops are
operating in the “old Avdeevka”, it’s an intense clearing operation, long ways
toward capturing the city, but the Ukrainians are being pushed out. Pions
[203mm self-propelled howitzers] have been spotted on the Kharkov-Rostov
highway. 12 howitzers total, and 17 other vehicles, probably with ammunition.

Dmitriy Yarosh writes: “Donetsk, [???], Peski, in just a
second. To friends: in the last 24 hours we have lost 80 wounded and 22 killed.
You will not see that in the news, since the people who are dying are
volunteers who don’t even receive medical assistance, but that’s the Right
Sector, we go forward when needed even though the “CTO General Staff” won’t
give us a single bullet, the SOBs.”

Around 1:30 in Donetsk, in the south-western part of the
Petrovka region there occurred an tank breakthrough attempt through a fortified
checkpoint of DPR forces. Preliminary information suggests that about 20 tanks
participated in the attack, and some of them were knocked out. The rest have
withdrawn but are remaining in the vicinity of the frontline, possibly awaiting
reinforcement. Other reports indicate up to five AFU tanks were seriously
damaged.

1/15/2015. 01:22. Intensive artillery duels along the line
Peski-Airport-Avdeevka, using tube and rocket artillery, and operations by
reconnaissance-strike groups. Near Mariupol the militia is attacking enemy
fortifications. A “night of long knives” in Donetsk. Counter-intelligence is
operating against reconnaissance-strike groups and artillery spotters. As of
midnight 6 such groups were detected. Four were destroyed, two are being
pursued.

Translator’s Note: The involvement of the Right Sector is
the most interesting part of the report, as is its leadership’s evident
unhappiness with the regular military and, especially, its high command. The
fighting is not even over yet, but the recriminations are already beginning.
DPR forces made good on their promise to take their counter-offensive to Avdeyevka
and are even exerting pressure on Mariupol. This puts tremendous political
pressure on Poroshenko (especially), but also Yatsenyuk and Turchinov, because
loss of territory to DPR would be a major political defeat that would weaken
their hand in the internal struggle against the Right Sector, Svoboda, and
other extremist formations.

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