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The Interpreter
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Ukraine Border Services Report Armored Vehicles Crossing Russian Border Near Lugansk
8 years
More Reports Of Separatist Advances in Lugansk
Three Border Guards Reportedly Injured In Cross-Border Attack

There are major accusations today that small units of well-armed militants, some of whom are traveling in armored vehicles, are crossing the Russian border and engaging in firefights with Ukrainian border guards. We opened our coverage today with reports that insurgent victories in Lugansk have been aided by these cross-border attacks. In that report, we mentioned that local witnesses saw Russian armored vehicles crossing the border to help the separatists, the former Interior Minister reported 15 trucks of militants crossing the border, and Ukrainian military expert Dmytro Tymuchuk claimed that two different border checkpoints north of Lugansk came under attack.

Jump to our report here:

Now, Tymchuk reports that 1 APC, 4 Kamaz trucks mounted with heavy machineguns, 3 minibuses and 4 cars filled with militants have all crossed the border near the Marinovka checkpoint, north of Lugansk, we believe approximately here on our interactive map is carrying this report, which has been translated by The Interpreter:

Miltia Attack Marinovka Border Checkpoint in Donetsk Region

The attack began at 16:05.

Today, June 5 at about 15:15 in the area of the Marinovka border checkpoint in Donetsk Region, Ukrainian border guards discovered a BTR [APC], four KaMAZ trucks outfitted with large-caliber Utes machine-guns, three minivans with militia and four passenger cards.

As the State Border Services of Ukraine (SBSU) press service reports, one kilometer from the checkpoint, the column deployed in battle formation. As the SBSU reported, at 16:05 the attack on the checkpoint began, and the staff of the SBSU took fire.

"The status as of 16:50 is that one KaMAZ is damaged, and a large-caliber machine gun is destroyed. All the relevant forces and divisions have been informed. A detachment formed of the SBSU and the Ukrainian Armed Forces is headed toward the checkpoint," the SBSU reported.

In Lugansk Region, two checkpoints have been closed.

We will recall that on the night of 4 June, unidentified persons attacked the checkpoint at Marinovka. After retaliatory fire from the border guards, the attack was stopped.

The time is now approximately 18:50, so these reports are about two hours old.

Meanwhile, this video claims to show several Russian BTR armored vehicles racing toward the Ukrainian border to the south, near Rostov on Don and racing toward Amvroseyevka (map). While the video has not been verified, the topography matches (as does the weather report), but the date is not confirmed. The problem is that, months ago, when large amounts of Russian troops were on the move, there were many eyewitness reports and videos. Two vehicles, or smaller convoys, moving on major highways, might pass witnesses by before they have the chance to video the vehicles. In other words, these claims are very hard to prove, or disprove.

The reports of Russian troops and vehicles crossing the border have not been independently verified, but the frequency of those claims over the last few days has been alarming, and coincides with a sudden surge in separatist military assaults, and victories.

The Ukrainian government appears to be losing control of the border, which means that the flood of Russian fighters across the border may be unstoppable at this moment without a significant change in fortune for the Ukrainian military.