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Published in Stream:
Day 1378: November 26, 2017
Press by
The Interpreter
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Ukraine Denies Re-Taking 2 Towns But Reports Indicate UAF Controls Areas
4 years

Screen grab of TSN broadcast showing town reportedly re-taken by Ukrainian forces. 

The Ukrainian side of the Joint Centre for Coordination and Control denied that Ukrainian forces were advancing their positions, and insisted that they were keeping to the Minsk accords and only "improving" positions within the bounds of the accord.

Earlier the Ukrainian Defense Minister had also denied the claim as did the ATO.

The Russia-backed separatists have accused Kiev of taking back territory while Lugansk has been in an upheaval with the overthrow of leader Igor Plotnitsky, who has fled to Moscow.

But Ukrainian military TV reported that some units of the Ukrainian Army had "improved their tactical position" on the Lugansk line near Gladosovo and Travenevoye to the north of Gorlovka.

The military video says the Ukrainian army "controls" the two villages now in the Svetlodarsk Bulge.

Ukraine's TSN TV channel also reported on Ukrainian troops taking over the villages.

Yuriy Mystagin, a volunteer for the Ukrainian Army, reported on his Facebook page on November 22 (translation by The Interpreter)

Due to systematic provocations and shelling of our positions on the Svetlodarsk Bulge, using heavy weapons banned by the Minsk agreements, and repeatedly recorded shelling from 82-mm, 120-mm, and 122-mm mortar-launchers and Grads, the soldiers of various divisions of the 54th Brigade and the Aidar 24th Battalion attached to it were forced to plan and conduct a military operatio on the Svetlodarsk Bulge.

As a result of sudden military actions, several villages were liberalted by our divisions, whose victors met our infanty as liberators, and also several strategic heights were taken under our contro. As a result of this operation new positions of several square kilometers appeared in our hands which we have successfully reinforced.

The claim was challenged by some readers on Facebook and by war bloggers.

Translation: (ATO spokesman) Regarding the villages occupied by Aidar and the 54th Brigade near Gorlovka -- it is not confirmed yet.

The ATO reported four violations of the ceasefire. On the Lugansk line, 82-mm were used to attack Tryokhizbenka and small arms were used near Zolotoye.

On the Donetsk line, militants attacked near Verkhnytoretskoye using 82-mm mortars and grenade-launchers. 

On the Maritime line, Gnutovo was attacked with an anti-aircraft system, heavy machine guns and small arms.

The self-declared "Lugansk People's Republic" has announced that acting LNR foreign minister Vladislav Deyny will be the LNR's representative in the Minsk talks.

Earlier, the newly-declared LNR head Leonid Pasechnik said Igor Plotnitsky, the deposed LNR head, would be the "LNR commissioner on fulfilling the Minsk agreements".

The OSCE SMM published a video of shelling of the Donetsk Filtration Station. OSCE did not say which side was responsible for the shelling.

The Ukrainian side of the Joint Centre for Coordination and Control accused Russia-backed militants of trying to put the camera out of order because "any shelling of the station immediately proves that the fire comes from the positions" of the separatists and "imitations of shelling" made to look as if coming from the Ukrainian side are "immediately visible".

-- Catherine A. Fitzpatrick