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The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
Ukraine Liveblog Day 182

Publication: Ukraine Liveblogs
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The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
Armored Convoy Geolocated Headed From Russia to Lugansk

UPDATED: Earlier today we posted video which was reportedly taken in the  town of Sukhodolsk and reportedly shows Russian vehicles, towing guns which look exactly like the ones spotted on the Russian side of the border yesterday, toward the city of Lugansk. The blogger for Ukraine at War has been looking at the video as well, and has helped geolocate it. According to him, that video was taken here (map):

Sukhodolsk-geolocation-angle.png

In the video there is a square building on the left:

image3.png

To the right the poles, the houses on the other side of the street, and the open space between the trees all seem to match perfectly, as does the small change in direction of the fence on the other side of the road:

image7.png

A local news website also places this video in the same area, almost exactly.

There is a small problem, however. The small building where the green arrow does not appear on either Google's or Yandex's satellite images:

Sukhodolsk-geolocation1.jpg

The Ukraine At War blogger was also noticing this, but believes that the building may be newer than the satellite images. This has happened before in recent geolocation exercises as well. Still, with the rest of the geolocation and Informator.lg.ua,  a local newspaper both suggesting that this is the location of the video, this is the best theory we have at the moment.

This would suggest that these trucks are Russian military hardware and crossed the border sometime last night or this morning.

UPDATE: It does seem that the new part of the building is visible in Google:

The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
Ukraine Says Intercepted Phone Call Proves Rebels Killed Dozens of Civilians

As we've been reporting all day, the Ukrainian government reports that rebel artillery fire has killed dozens of civilians. Here is the latest statement fromthe Ukrainian government via Kyiv Post:

Anatoly Proshin, a spokesman for the Ukrainian government's north operational command, blamed the Russian-backed insurgents for opening fire on the convoy of refugees with rockets from a Grad multiple launch missile system near the cities of Khriaschuvate and Novosvitlivka. He said the convoy was flying white flags as it made its way out of town.

“The terrorists committed a bloody crime at 9:40 this morning. Near Luhansk, on the road between Khryashchuvate and Novosvitlivka, the mercenaries used Grad systems and grenade-launchers imported from Russia to shoot at a column of civilians attempting to leave the combat zone,” National Security and Defense Council spokesperson Andriy Lysenko said at a briefing in Kyiv. “Many people died, including women and children. The number of casualties is currently being determined.”

But the Ukrainian Security Services (SBU) have also released a leaked audio tape which they say shows that separatists also were behind a deadly incident where civilians were killed on August 15th:

An excerpt of the translation from Schindler's website:

Korsa: Today they made a mistake in coordinates of roughly one minute, they claim. But I gave a range in seconds (i.e. coordinates).

Vovk: The fact remains the fact. Ok, nobody knows about it. The information has been thrown out there that it was the Ukrops (derogatory term for Ukrainian forces) who hit the civilians. I can tell you that nobody is secured here. It’s been done before. This is war.

Here is the Ukrayinska Pravda  article, translated by The Interpreter:

The Ukrainian Security Service (SBU) has intercepted a telephone conversation between fighters from the Donetsk terrorist group which proves that the shelling of the civilian population of the village of Stepnoye was committed in fact by Russian mercenaries.

Andrey Lysenko, spokesman for the Ukrainian Council for National Defense and Security (CNDS), described the intercept at a briefing Monday, August 18.

The conversation cites proof that through the Russian mass media, the terrorists have tried to place responsibility for this shelling on the ATO [Anti-Terrorist Operation] forces.

In the audiotape published by the SBU, according to their information, "Volk" [Wolf], deputy head of staff of the "Ministry of State Security of the DPR" is speaking with "Kors," the navigator for the Grad system.

Correction: We initially reported that the leaked phone call described today's incident.

The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
Ukraine's Injured Rebels Travel To Russia And Are Greeted By FSB Officers
Journalist Joshua Yaffa makes some very interesting observations as he witnessed buses filled with injured Ukrainian rebels reach Russia:
MChS is the Emergencies Ministry.
The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
Russian Military Vehicles Seen On Move Just Inside Ukraine

A YouTube video, purportedly shot today in the town of Sukhodolsk, just across the border and a little to the north-west of the Izvarino crossing, shows a large column of military vehicles on the move:

The vehicles seen include Kamaz trucks (some towing artillery,) military ambulances and, at the end, a BMD-2 infantry fighting vehicle.

The vehicles appear to lack number plates:

140818-plateless-truck.png

In fact, they closely resemble ones photographed yesterday in Russia by Polish journalist Wojciech Bojanowski:

Notice that the vehicles and the gun being towed look nearly exactly the same. In the video reportedly taken today, the towed gun is covered by a tarp, but in the picture from yesterday you can clearly see that a tarp is secured to the back of the gun. This could be the same vehicle, or it could just indicate that this vehicle and gun are the same kinds, being moved and secured in the same ways, as those spotted in Russia.

He also reported today, as we noted earlier, that another military truck, without plates, crossed the border into Ukrainian territory.

The BDM-2 seen at the end looks very similar to those seen waiting near the border crossing on August 15.

Here is a screenshot from the video above:

140818-bmd-screenshot.png

Here is one of the BMDs on August 15, reportedly only 10 km from the Ukrainian border: 

The position and style of the numbering and military insignia appear to match, though it looks as if a very basic attempt has been made to whitewash or smear out the markings on the vehicle filmed today.

Even more interesting is the purported location of the column, Shosseynaya street in Sukhodolsk. This street runs straight to the village of Severny, right on the border with Russia. From there, one can turn south and follow a road straight across the border and into the Russian town of Donetsk.

Google maps lacks some detail in this area, so we'll point out this route via Yandex maps:

140818-sukhodolsk-donetsk-route-yandex.p

While vehicles have been seen crossing the border at Izvarino, no-one has been watching this potential crossing. We have not yet precisely geolocated this video, but the location does resemble that seen in the video. If this is accurate, then this may well be the route by which Russian arms have been entering Ukraine while avoiding scrutiny on the well-known, and now watched, border crossing at Izvarino. 

The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
More Russian Vehicles Cross Into Ukraine, More Tanks Headed To The Border

TVN24 (a Polish network) Foreign Correspondent Wojciech Bojanowski reports from the border crossing at Izvarino where he says more Russian armor has crossed into Ukraine. These reports start last night and continue until now:


That appears to be a 9k35 Strela-10 with its missiles locked in place, like this.

9K35-Strela-10.jpg

The trucks are brown because, as we've been reporting, Russian soldiers reported last week that they are really Russian military transports which have been painted white, and the men driving them are really Russian soldiers.
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