Dmitry Tymchuk, Coordinator, Information Resistance
Translated and edited by Voices of Ukraine
Over the past few days, terrorists have been trying to take revenge following the successful actions of ATO forces after the ceasefire of June 20–30 lapsed. Earlier, after fleeing from Sloviansk, Kramatorsk and other settlements, the terrorists were significantly demoralized, which forced the Russian leadership to make a drastic change in the format of its ongoing aggression carried out in Ukraine.
We, the Information Resistance group, note the following steps of Russia in this direction:
1. The continued active movement of heavy military equipment and mercenaries across the state border from the territory of the Russian Federation. Previously, during the ceasefire, security forces reported that they had “full control” of the border. The IR group announced the opposite to be true (although we do work closely with government agencies, we are convinced that one should not engage in wishful thinking, especially on such fundamental and important issues).
A distinctive feature of the current equipment transfer to terrorists is that it is predominantly staffed with military personnel and combat crews from among the Russian servicemen.
Formerly, the crews were staffed with Russian mercenaries who had previous experience with similar equipment, but who were reservists at the time of recruitment (also, the teams were partially manned with insurgents from among the locals with necessary military specialties).
Therefore, we are talking about a full-scale Russian military invasion of Donbas.
2. At the same time, the insurgents are creating conditions to “soften” the international reaction to the Russian invasion.
In particular, in agreement with the Russian side, throughout the past week the terrorists have been conducting planned artillery shelling of the Russian Federation territory from the border areas of Ukraine. This enables Moscow to claim that the Ukrainian Armed Forces are shelling the Russian territory.
At the beginning of these incidents, it appeared as if the insurgents fired unintentionally, in the course of their armed confrontations with the ATO forces. However, there is currently no doubt that this is a thoroughly planned special operation.
In particular, the attacks are happening outside the combat zone–[they are initiated] from the districts free of ATO forces. The Russian side instantly reacts to these shellings by expressing its protests and threats without any investigation of circumstances of similar incidents.
3. The Russian Armed Forces are shelling the positions of Ukrainian security forces from the border regions of Russia. They also intrude into the territory of Ukraine to carry out particular missions and operations.
This is another component of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
4. The active transfer of units of Russian troops that began on June 30 to the border areas across from Sumy and Kharkiv Oblasts, where no combat is underway, has become a diversion from the Russian Armed Forces operation in Donbas.
Unlike the transfer of Russian troops into Rostov Oblast of Russia (across from Donetsk and Luhansk Oblasts of Ukraine), this relocation is being conducted defiantly, without any measures to conceal it.
Some of the equipment and weapons used by Russian military units bears the identification signs of the Russian “peacekeeping forces.” Parallel to this, Russia has once again raised the issue of bringing its “peacekeepers” to Ukraine.
There is no doubt that this operation is underway in order to divert Ukrainian special forces away from the ATO area to protect the state border with the Russian Federation in those Oblasts.
5. In parallel to this, Russia is conducting a powerful foreign policy operation to enhance EU pressure on Ukraine in order to force Ukraine to stop active operations in Donbas. And the “first echelon” of the Russian lobby in the EU appears to be Germany.
Therefore, after a pause taken by Putin in the Ukrainian conflict (or rather a slight decrease in the activity of conflict escalation), Russia is once again demonstrating its determination to continue the aggression.
Only the active ATO in Donbas (primarily, to cleave out terrorist forces and the Russian army in the Luhansk and Donetsk Oblasts from the state border with Russia, with the creation of a “buffer zone”), and harsh reaction by the international community aimed at forcing the Kremlin to stop military aggression against Ukraine, can counteract this plan.