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The Interpreter
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Day 1152: April 14, 2017

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.
5 Ukrainian Soldiers Wounded Today; 2,652 Ukrainian Troops Killed, 9,578 Wounded in Last 3 Years

People take part in a funeral ceremony February 1, 2017 for the seven Ukrainian servicemen killed in battle at the Svetlodarsk Bulge, in Independence Square in central Kiev, Ukraine, REUTERS/Valentyn Ogirenko

In its morning dispatch, the ATO said 2 Ukrainian soldiers had been wounded. In its evening dispatch at 18:00, the ATO reported 3 more wounded, for a total of 5.

There were 65 attacks over night from Russia-backed forces and 29 during the day for a total of 94 for this 24-hour period.

On the coastal line, Russia-backed militants fired 120-mm mortars, heavy machine guns and small arms at Ukrainian positions at Vodyanoye. Anti-tank grenades and machine guns were fired on Pavlopol; small arms were fired on Shirokino, Gnutovo and Talakovka.

On the Donetsk like, militants fired 82-mm grenade and heavy machines at Avdeyevka, Verknyetoretskoye, Zaytsevo and Kaminka. Near Peski, there was firing from grenade-launchers and heavy machine guns.

On the Lugansk line, militants fired 120-mm mortars and automatic grenade-launchers on Katerinovka; grenade-launchers and small arms were used on Popasnyaya. 

The worst attacks were along the coast on the Mariupol line. Militants fired 122-mm artillery, 120-mm mortars, an armed BMP and heavy machine guns at Ukrainian positions in Vodyanoye, and fired 120-mm mortars, and armed BMP, an anti-aircraft ZU-23-2 system, grenade-launchers and small arms at Shirokino. Militants fired 120-mm mortars and small arms at the marines near Gunotov; 82-mm mortars and anti-tank grenade-launchers were used near Talakovka. Grenade-launches pounded Pavlopol, Maryinka and Krasnogorovka. Machines guns were used on Chermalyk, Granitnoye and Maryinka; small arms were fired on Starognatovka. Snipers were active near Vodyanoye, Talakovka, Pavlopol and Novotroitskoye.

On the Donetsk line, 82-mm and 120-mm mortars were fired on Avdeyevka as well as grenade-launchers and heavy machines guns; Luganskoye was struck with 82-mm mortars. An anti-tank missile system, 82-mm mortars, machine guns and an armed BMP were fired on Opytnoye; machine guns were also fired on Nevelskoye. Anti-aircraft ZU-23-2s, grenade-launchers and machine guns were used on Kamenki. Militants fired heavy machine guns and small arms on Ukrainian defenders of the Butovka mine.

On the Lugansk line, militants fired from grenade-launchers on Novaleksandrovka and Katerinovka.

o Total of 2,652 Ukrainian Soldiers Killed in Three Years of War 

At his briefing today, Col. Andriy Lysenko, spokesman for the Defense Ministry on ATO issues, said that a total of 2,652 soldiers had been killed and 9,578 wounded since the start of the Anti-Terrorist Operation, i.e. Ukrainian resistance to the Russia-backed takeover by armed separatists of towns in the Donbass.

"In three years in battles for freedom, independent and territory integirty of Ukraine, 2,652 soldiers and officers of the Armed Forces, National Guard, Ukrainian Security Service, Interior Ministry and State Border Service have been killed."

President Petro Poroshenko said yesterday speaking before soldiers of the 17th Tank Brigade in Lugansk Region that in 2017 alone, 69 soldiers had been killed and 420 were wounded.

o OSCE Says 'De-Escalation' of War Since Declaration of Ceasefire

While Russia-backed attacks have been steady and have even escalated to hight numbers, OSCE's assessment was that there had been a "de-escalation," reported.

As we reported, Alexander Hug, first deputy of the Special Monitoring Mission said that there had been 17% less shelling by contrast with the previous week, except for the area to the northeast and east of Mariupol. For the first time in six weeks, no use of Grads had been noted, he said. This has meant a reduction in civilian casualties.

Even so, observers note an increase of armor that was supposed to be withdrawn under the Minsk agreement.

o How Many Russian Tanks in the Donbass?

Dmitro Tymchuk, a military expert and editor of Information Resistance blog, explained the different figures given for the presence of Russian troops in the Donbass, reported, citing a post on his Facebook page.

In September 2016, President Petro Poroshenko informed the UN that there were more than 700 tanks, 1,200 armored vehicles and 1,000 artillery systems.

On April 6, 2017, Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman said there were 406 tanks, 848 BTRs, 208 multiple rocket-launcher systems and 732 artillery systems.

Does this mean that Russia has withdrawn its tanks?

No, Tymchuk explains that Poroshenko was counting all the armor in all units in both the self-declared "Donetsk People's Republic" and "Lugansk People's Republic" (DNR and LNR). But Groysman was counting only the armor in the DNR's 1st Army Corps and the LNR's 2nd Army Corps

-- Catherine A. Fitzpatrick 

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The Interpreter
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Weekly Violence Down 17%, But That's Not The Whole Picture
The ceasefire was broken 43 times over the previous 12 hours just in the Mariupol sector, according to the morning briefing of the Ukrainian military Anti-Terrorism-Operation (ATO):
After three years of war,  2652 Ukrainian soldiers have been killed and 9578 have been wounded -- staggering numbers for any modern military. In fact, more Ukrainian soldiers have been killed in the first three years of this conflict than members of the US-led coalition in Iraq lost in the same amount of time.
Ceasefire violations were down 17% this week, but that doesn't tell the whole story. 
-- James Miller