Tag Archives: Kramatorsk

Breaking news – Military jet downed by anti-Kiev forces in Lugansk – Ukraine’s defense ministry

Anti-Kiev forces took down a Ukrainian military Il-76 jet as it was landing in Lugansk, the country’s Defense Ministry said. It did not provide details on casualties.

TSN.ua news website earlier reported that around 30 paratroopers were killed as self-defense forces hit the jet with a rocket.

The plane was transporting rotating military personnel and had “troops, machinery, equipment and food,” the ministry said in a statement.

The Il-76 is a heavy military transport aircraft that usually has a crew of seven and can transport up to 167 soldiers with weapons.

Meanwhile, shooting has resumed in Slavyansk and Kramatorsk in the Donetsk region as the Ukrainian military continues its crackdown on self-defense forces in the country’s east, a self-defense representative said.

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Former U.S. Ambassador to Moscow Warns of War in Ukraine

Michael McFaul, who served as President Obama’s ambassador to Moscow until February, has warned that the Ukraine crisis is approaching a state of war that could trigger a large scale invasion by Russian military forces.

“The last 24 hours was a major escalation,” McFaul told TIME in a Friday interview, as Ukraine’s military began an operation to reclaim eastern cities and towns taken over by pro-Russia militants. The offensive has led to violence, including reports that Ukrainian helicopters were shot down by pro-Russian forces. Brewing violence in the southern port city of Odessa also claimed dozens of lives Friday.

“This is real,” McFaul said. “This is war.”

Amid reports that pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine are urging Russia’s military to intervene on their behalf, McFaul says he’s now reconsidering the widely-shared assumption that Russian President Vladimir Putin would prefer to destabilize Ukraine from a distance, without staging a cross-border invasion that would compel the west to take new retaliatory steps, possibly including arming the Ukrainian military.

“It would be very costly for Russia to invade Ukraine,” McFaul said. “It’ll be real fight — maybe guerrilla warfare for years. That’s not something one does lightly. But it got a lot more likely in the last 12 hours.”

Russia’s parliament has authorized Putin to intervene in Ukraine, though Putin said last month “I very much hope that I will not have to exercise this right.”

But many experts fear the rising violence may provide Putin with an excuse, even if it brings a harsh western response. “It would be a very foolish move on Russia’s part,” says Olga Oliker, an international security and defense policy analyst at the Rand Corporation. “However that does not mean that it can be ruled out.”

The chaos deepened on Saturday as the Ukrainian military continued to press its offensive. The pro-Kremlin news outlet RT alleged on Saturday that residents in the eastern city of Kramatorsk chased off Ukrainian military forces with chants of “fascists.” In one bright spot, however, a team of international observers held for days by pro-Russian forces were released unharmed.

But the larger picture remains bleak. The events of the past couple of days, McFaul said, “make me more worried than ever before.”

via Former U.S. Ambassador to Moscow Warns of War in Ukraine | TIME.com.

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Ukrainian army launches assault on Kramatorsk

Ukraine’s National Guard is reportedly storming the eastern town of Kramatorsk. Meanwhile, the army has resumed its special operation in Slavyansk, where two soldiers have been killed.

“The assault is starting now,” a Kramatorsk self-defense activist has told RIA Novosti by phone. Another activist told the news agency that the National Guard opened fire on self-defense forces.

Dozens have been killed or injured in Kramatorsk, a doctor told RIA Novosti. The medic added that the fighting has now stopped and all of those injured have been taken to hospitals in Kramatorsk and Slavyansk. At least two died on the way to the hospital, she said.

Meanwhile, the Ukrainian military’s special operation has resumed in the nearby town of Slavyansk. The headquarters of the people’s self-defense is under snipers’ fire, according to Itar-Tass. There are reports of injuries among protesters.

The Ukrainian Defense Ministry said that two military personnel were killed on Friday in the village of Andreyevka, not far from Slavyansk, Donetsk region. According to the ministry, they came under an attack with the use of small arms.

“The violent military confrontation is ongoing. To date, information about the deaths of two Ukrainian servicemen has been confirmed,” the ministry said in a statement, as quoted by Interfax-Ukraine.

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Ukrainian military open fire on militia in Kramatorsk, three injured

Ukrainian servicemen opened fire on the militia in Kramatorsk, three were wounded, told supporters of federalization to RIA Novosti.

According to them, in the area of Pchekino in Kramatorsk militia tried to break the car convoy of several BMD that was going to the airfield, which was held since the evening by the Ukrainian military. They wedged into the column and blocked the way to the closing machine.

Ukrainian military opened fire. One militia was wounded in the shoulder and two were wounded in the legs. The car managed to go through towards the airfield. The victims hae received medical help.

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Crucial railway in Ukraine’s Donetsk region blocked by unknown people

Changes have been made in the routes of long-distance and commuter trains, unidentified individuals blocked the railway between the stations of Kramatorsk and Druzhkovka

Soldiers seen near a railway in Kramatorsk

Soldiers seen near a railway in Kramatorsk

KIEV, April 16.

A new element may have appeared in the standoff between the population of Ukraine’s eastern regions and the forces loyal to the central government, as unknown people blocked a crucial railway between the city of Kramatorsk and the town of Druzhkovka on Wednesday, the Donetsk Railway Department press service says.

“In the wake of an unauthorized blocking of the railway between the stations of Kramatorsk and Druzhkovka by unidentified individuals, changes have been made in the routes of long-distance and commuter trains, which are diverted to a different line until the unauthorized blocking is lifted,” the press service said.

A total of twenty-six long-distance passenger trains and twenty-eight commuter trains traverse the line between Kramatorsk and Druzhkovka daily.

The line provides a railway link between the heavily industrialized and densely populated southeast of the Donetsk region and the city of Kharkov. It also links the area to Lozovaya, one of the biggest railway junctions in Southeast Ukraine.

ITAR-TASS

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Protesters seize 6 armored vehicles in Ukraine’ Donetsk region

Men wearing military fatigues ride on armoured personnel carriers (APC) in the eastern Ukrainian city of Kramatorsk on April 16, 2014.

Men wearing military fatigues ride on armoured personnel carriers (APC) in the eastern Ukrainian city of Kramatorsk on April 16, 2014.

KIEV, April 16. ITAR-TASS

Ukrainian protesters on Wednesday seized six armored vehicles of the Ukrainian army which had rolled in the town of Kramatorsk, Donetsk region, eastern Ukraine, as part of the task force to conduct an anti-terrorist operation, local media reported.

Activists surrounded the vehicles and blocked their movement. Then they disarmed the servicemen and drove the APCs towards the village of Ivanivka.

Raid in Kramatorsk

On Tuesday, Ukrainian security services carried out a raid in the airport of Kramatorsk and won it back from the city’s self-defense forces.

According to human right activists, in the course of the raid, a fighter jet was shot down, and there were casualties and wounded.

At the same time, at 17:00 GMT on Tuesday physicians from Kramatorsk reported that no people injured in the shootout during the airport’s storming were delivered to local hospitals.

Representatives of the Kramatorsk self-defense forces say that Right Sector militants and foreign mercenaries were taking part in the storming of the airport. “The attackers were dressed in the uniform of Right Sector militants, and some of them spoke foreign languages.”

“They sought to avoid contact with local residents, allegedly not to give themselves away. We suppose that these were mercenaries,” one of the Kramatorsk self-defense activists reported.

The Kramatorsk airport is now controlled by Ukrainian servicemen, but the city itself is still under control of self-defense units. “We were indeed knocked off from the airport, but the city is under our control. We won’t let anyone in it,” one of the activists assured, stressing that the city’s self-defense forces are ready to fight against armored equipment.

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In Ukraine crisis, West is part of problem, not solution – analyst

Ukrainian troops have seized an airfield in the eastern city of Kramatorsk, said anti-government protesters. Four people were killed and two injured, activists added. At the same time Slavyansk is being raided by the Ukrainian military. Armored personnel vehicles are entering the city, there are many troops and the men are getting ready to defend the city, the head of the Donbass people’s militia, Sergey Tsyplakov.

Western stance on Ukraine: emotional and out of touch

Anti-government protesters have been holding rallies in the south-eastern part of Ukraine following the coup in Kiev on February 22. Activists have seized government buildings in most of the cities in the Donetsk region. On Sunday, the Kiev government launched a crackdown operation in Slavyansk. Following the event, Ukraine’s Security Council approved a full-scale security operation in the country’s eastern regions. On Monday, coup-imposed President Aleksandr Turchinov signed a decree to officially begin a “special anti-terrorist operation” in the east of the country. Voice of Russia discussed the situation with a political analyst Dmitry Babich.

Dmitry? You know the latest news. What is the likely scenario for further developments now in the country?

My impression is that the Ukrainian authorities already made a mistake, because the only way they could indeed win this war would be just to quickly attack several most important locations using the factor of unexpected attack to take back Donetsk and Kharkov maybe in just one or two days. What they did was to launch first an operation in Kramatorsk and also to block Slavyansk. So, they are losing time and, unfortunately, there are already reports about people being killed and injured. All of this will certainly make their victory, if they have some sort of victory, a mixed story.

Also, I would like to add that the people who are conducting this operation, such as the Secretary of the National Security Council of Ukraine – Andrei Paruby – these are real neo-Nazis. I’m very sorry, but Paruby was one of the founders of the National-Social Party of Ukraine in 1991 together with Oleg Tyagnibok. And you can understand very well that National-Social was just a euphemism for national socialists. These people are national socialists. That’s their true name.

Still, the authorities in Ukraine, whether we like it or not, are more or less recognized by most of the world and they are saying that they are preserving the unity of the country. In some cases Russia as well supports the actions of governments who somehow try to keep the unity of the country and fight separatists. Why in this case you believe this is a mistake?

Because in this case we just recently had similar protests in Kiev and then the West and all the countries that you just described recognized the legitimacy of this new Kiev Government. At that time all these people said that the use of force would be a sort of a death penalty for Mr. Yanukovych. They said it was the reddest of all red lines. And now we see the Army being used in fighting the civil unrest and we have no protest from the West.

So, if you point out to certain inconsistencies in Russia’s position, I think that there can be many ways to answer that question. First, neither in Yugoslavia, where Russia supported the unity of the country, nor in other countries, that I can remember of during the last ten years, the authorities fighting for the unity of their country did have Nazi slogans, did use Nazi paraphernalia, did have an openly racist ideology.

Milosevic, as bad as he was, if you read all of his speeches, he was very politically correct, he never made any ethnic slurs. Mr. Paruby made terrible ethnic slurs and now he heads this operation using the Army against the civilian protesters.

If we get back to separatism in general, do you consider those disturbances in Ukraine as a reflection of separatist movement in general or it is not separatism at all?

Well, formally speaking, these people are demanding a referendum and they are demanding some kind of federalization for Ukraine. Legally, speaking this is not separatism. Some of them may want to join Russia, that’s true. But this is not a reason to use the Army against them.

And also, I think I can understand them from the human point of view, because I have been reading the Ukrainian nationalist press during the last 20 years. And in that press people from Donbas and from Kharkov were insulted in all possible ways as Soviet conservatives, as drunkards, good-for-nothings who should be exiled to Russia or maybe even cut to size and put in prison.

So, I understand why people in Donetsk are worried about being governed by the Government that basically believes in this kind of ideas. And I understand why they don’t believe they can achieve their aims by voting, because they have been trying to achieve their aims by democratic means, by voting for 20 years.

But, unfortunately, now that Crimea is no longer a part of Ukraine, the east of Ukraine is losing to the West in terms of a number of votes. Until Crimean was part of Ukraine the east and the center of Ukraine together had about 55% of the vote. Now they have less than 50% and that’s why I think they want autonomy for themselves, they want to elect their own governor, they don’t want the governor sent from Kiev. And that’s why we have all these passions running high right now.

If we get back to those latest developments, those latest news we’ve heard just now, some media have already dubbed the current situation “a point of no return”. Do you think this is the case?

No, I think that there is always a way to start a dialog, because the vast majority of Ukrainians and Russians are capable of having a dialog and the vast majority of Ukrainians and Russians do not want an open confrontation or, heaven forbid, a war. So, I think that there is always a possibility to restart a dialog.

But certainly, the Government that is now ruling the country in Kiev is discrediting itself very quickly. And I can only hope that this Government’s tumbling down will not take all of Ukraine with itself. Unfortunately, it seems to me that the Western support for this Government is almost 100%. The West has engaged itself completely with one of the sides in the conflict and this is very dangerous and very sad.

You’ve just mentioned the West, what do you think should Russia do in this situation?

Russia has been doing everything it could in terms of legally attracting attention of the West to the problems of Ukraine, trying to help the West save that country.

But if the West does not react to beatings of the two presidential candidates that happened just hours ago, if the West keeps talking about the Russian troops and Russian agents doing all the unrest in eastern Ukraine, if the West doesn’t want to notice that there are probably tens of thousands of regular civilians taking part in these protests, then the West just sort of disqualifies itself from being a party to the solution of the problem.

The West created this problem by pressuring Ukraine to sign the association agreement. And now the West just doesn’t want to become a part of the solution.

 The Voice of Russia

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Up to 11 people killed in Kramatorsk airfield battle

Between four and eleven people have been killed in a battle at the airport in Kramatorsk, a correspondent of the Rossiya 24 television channel said.

“Indeed, there are fatalities. Efforts are under way to clarify their number, which is between four and eleven people,” the correspondent reported live on Tuesday.

As a result of clashes the Ukrainian troops opened fire against self-defense fighters who tried to stop paratroopers from landing at the airfield in Kramatorsk, he said.

Talks are now under way outside the airport building, a representative from the Ukrainian Army has met with the people who came up to the airfield, he said. Asked why the troops were shooting, he said: “I do not know.”

“The situation here is fairly tense, but at this moment there are no clashes,” he said.

“The town residents demand an explanation from the military. Moreover, a rally is about to begin: people arrive by taxi and in their own cars, there is now a traffic jam near the airport building,” the correspondent said, according to Interfax.

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