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The Interpreter
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Day 839: June 5, 2016

Publication: Ukraine Liveblogs
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The Interpreter
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Ukrainian Forces Document Russian-Backed Militants' Shelling of Civilian Areas in Nikolayevka; Civilian Killed in Pervomayskoye
Yesterday, June 4 the ATO [Anti-Terrorist Operation] reported on its Facebook page that Russian-backed militants fired on its positions 22 times, including in the area of Beryozovaya and on the Mariupol line near Pavlopol and Shirokino, where 82-mm artillery was used to shell 4 times.

There was also firing with grenade-launchers and large-caliber machine-guns near Vodyanoye, Shirokino, Gnutovo and Maryinka. A sniper was reported to be active in the area of Krasnogorovka.

Positions in Avdeyevka and Peskov continued to be shelled with large-caliber machine guns and grenade-launcher, and near Opytnoye, there was shelling from a BMP-2, the ZU-23-2 anti-aircraft system and grenade-launchers.

Today, June 4,  as reported, militants fired 12 times on Ukrainian positions. The ATO said that between 2:00-3:00 am, militans fired from the direction of the chemical factory in Yasnobrodovka with heavy artillery and released 25 shells. There was firing on Avdeyevka and Peskov from 82-mm artillery, and near Mayorsk and Mironovskoye there was firing with heavy artillery, firearms and grenade-launchers.

Militants used 82- and 120-mm artillery to fire from Staromikhailovka on Krasnogorovka, and also used a tank to fire four times. Near Novotroitsky, the Russian-backed fighters used a BMP  as well as anti-tank grenade-launchers to fire on Shirokino.

In the Lugansk Region, Ukrainian positions were fired on from 122-mm self-propelled artillery near Novozvanovka.

Unian reported on the militants' shelling of civilian areas of Nikolayevka (Mikolaivka) today using 120-mm artillery which is banned by the Minsk agreement, using pictures from the ATO.

The militants fired from separatist-controlled territory in Dokuchayevsk.

Both the ATO and Unian have begun to refer to these areas as "temporarily occupied".

The news service of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic (DNR) reported that a civilian was injured in an alleged firing of a grenade-launcher at a bus at a checkpoint near Mayorsk (near separatist-controlled Gorlovka).

RBC.UA carried a report June 4 about a civilian born in 1974 who was killed by the shelling of Russian-backed militants on June 3 in Pervomayskoye in the Yasinovatsky District

A day care center, clinic, hair dresser and the village council building were damaged in the shelling.

In other news, Russian occupation police in Crimea have arrested a local deputy who supported the annexation, reported.

Pavel Stepanchenko of Alusht was arrested and manhandled by police, as can be seen in a video uploaded by Right Sector activist Andriy Biley to YouTube. Although at one time Stepanchenko denounced Right Sector and called for the "Russian world" in Crimea, on June 4, he was arrested on a day when a group planned to protest the building of a shopping mall on the coast. In order to get permission for the event, the organizers billed it as a "meeting with city council deputy Stepanchenko" which would be more difficult to ban.

A hundred people gathered on docks near where attractions had been built blocking access to the sea. But demonstrators lasted five minutes before police swooped down when Stepanchenko appeared. Protesters surrounded the police car in which Stepanchenko was being held and prevented it from leaving.

Protesters had earlier clashed with Belarusian merchants who had reportedly taken over the seaside area. "We thought that when Russia came in they would install order but now you see what is going on," the protesters complained.

Ismail Mustafayev, a Crimean Tatar, was arrested for "unlawful wood-chopping" by 30 riot police in masks, reported, citing Shevket Namatullayev, an ATR journalist.

The OMON masked riot police came to Mustafayev's home in Krasny Mak at 7:00 am, using as a pretext a a case for illegal lumber cutting at a site where he had worked as a wood cutter The case in fact had been closed in 2014 when prosecutors found the activity was at another site for which he was not responsible.

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Photo by Shevket Namutullayev/ATR
2016-06-05 18:45:22

Namatullayev said that OMON soldiers forbid people from speaking in the Crimean Tatar language while they arrested Mustafayev. They also searched for religious literature and seemed to want to pin membership in the banned group Hizb-ut-Tahrir on him.

Abdureshit Dzhepparov, a member of a Crimean human rights group, said that Ismail was an ordinary Muslim who went to the mosque on Fridays, and the case, originated in 2012, had been closed in 2014.  He said the OMON were armed with machine guns and behaved rudely, and spent two hours searching Namatullayev's home. They confiscated three gasoline chainsaws. 

Namatullayev, who is married with three children, remains in police custody.

-- Catherine A