LUGANSK, Novorussiya – The Ukrainian Armed Forces conducted firing drills with the Strela-10 surface-to-air missile systems near the Donbass line of contact, the People’s Militia spokesman of the self-proclaimed People’s Republic of Lugansk (RPL), Andrei Marochko, said on Saturday.
At the end of 2015, the Minsk agreement was signed which requires the withdrawal of all heavy armaments at the same distance on both sides in order to create a50 km safety zone for artillery and tanks of more than 100mm caliber .
“Violating the heavy weapons withdrawal line, at a distance of 15 kilometers from the contact line in the Predtechino village, the military of the 72nd Brigade of the Armed Forces of Ukraine carried out firing training with anti-aircraft missile systems Strela-10,” said Marochko.
He added that such actions contradict the Minsk agreements and “contribute to the worsening situation in this region.” Marochko said he called on officials of the Special Monitoring Mission of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) to record these violations in their reports.
“The enemy continues to strengthen the grouping of forces in the area of the Operation of the United Forces of Ukraine,” said the spokesman.
According to him, in the region of the village of Vasyukovka, 12 units of multiple rocket launchers BM-21 Grad of the Ukrainian forces were seen.
The conflict in eastern Ukraine between the self-proclaimed republics of Donetsk and Lugansk and the Ukrainian authorities has killed more than 10,000 people since April 2014. The peace agreement signed in Minsk in 2015 helped to reduce hostilities, but the clashes continue with Kiev constantly breaking the ceasefire.
This comes as days ago an unidentified detachment of soldiers wearing NATO uniforms was seen by the People’s Militia of Lugansk (RPL) in Donbass territory controlled by Kiev, the head of the press entity Yakov Osadchy said.
“In the area that is the responsibility of the 72nd brigade in the village of Svetlodarsk came a detachment of 28 men equipped with NATO uniforms,” Osadchy said.