Dmitry Tymchuk, Head of the Center for Military and Political Research, Coordinator of the Information Resistance group, Member of Parliament (People’s Front)
Translated and edited by Voices of Ukraine
(See end of post for acronym glossary)
Operational data from Information Resistance:
During the past weekend (02.27-02.28.2016), Russian-terrorist forces have focused the bulk of their efforts on shelling the ATO forces’ positions and civilian objects west and northwest from the Donetsk–Horlivka line. During the attacks, the enemy used automatic small arms, various types of grenade launchers, as well as mortars (of both main calibers, 82 mm and 120 mm) and anti-aircraft guns (ZU-23-2). Use of armored vehicles by militants was also observed (APC’s and one BMP-2).
In the vicinity of Pisky, militants, operating from camouflaged positions, fired several times at the ATO forces’ positions located at the northwestern edge of Pisky, as well as at an observation post north of the town. Terrorists used two heavy machine guns, while another strike group directed intensive small arms fire at [the ATO forces’] positions north of the pond in this area.
Several terrorist infantry groups attempted to deliver a barrage of concentrated small arms fire from the direction of Vesele and the fire station of the DAP, aiming at the ATO forces’ strongholds and observation posts in front of Opytne, near the Donetsk Bypass. The attack pattern is to open heavy machine gun fire and use it for cover, while several infantry groups direct small arms fire at the advanced positions of the Ukrainian forces. In addition to this, militants fired automatic weapons, machine guns, and several RPG rounds at [the ATO forces’] strongholds northwest of the above positions.
The industrial area in front of the 272.2 m high ground (near Avdiivka) was shelled by militants from 82 mm mortars. It is rather obvious that militants have not resigned themselves to the loss of this area, which is located before the Yasynuvata junction. An important operational and tactical supply road between Donetsk and Horlivka runs through this area.
In the vicinity of Krasnohorivka, a militant armored group (two BMP-2’s and two BTR-80’s) was maneuvering north of Staromykhailivka. The BTR’s repeatedly opened fire from their on-board heavy machine guns, shelling settlements and the ATO forces’ strongholds west of Krasnohorivka, at the entrance from the direction of Donetsk. In the same area, terrorists deployed ZU-23-2’s (operated by the militant fire group from the Petrovskiy district of Donetsk).
Near Mar’inka, a terrorist group delivered intensive fire from AGS-17’s and heavy machine guns, from positions in vegetation north of the poultry farm and from the “Crocodile” waste bank. A militant sniper group was spotted in forested areas south of Oleksandrivka.
Images of Mar’inka, which continues suffering heavy damage. Photographs by @AnnaNemtsova
On the stretch between Shumy and Mayorsk, militants used AGS-17’s and SPG-9M “Kopye” [Spear] recoilless guns. Fire came from positions near the Poselok 6-7 estate and north of Hornopromyslova Street (Horlivka). Militants also fired 82 mm mortars and machine guns from the direction of Holmivskyi, aiming at the ATO forces’ positions north of Zaitseve.
Two 120 mm shells exploded south of the Zhovanka river (however, no artillery fire was observed from the side of the militants; possibly, this was a detonation of previously unexploded 120 mm ordnance).
In the coastal regions, militants are actively using mortars. The ATO forces’ stronghold to the east of Talakivka was repeatedly shelled by 2B9 “Vasilek” 82 mm automatic mortars. Observation posts and strongholds at the northeastern and eastern outskirts of Hnutove were fired on from 120 mm mortars (a militant mobile assault team operated from ravines north of Zaichenko; after dusk, four armored vehicles were spotted maneuvering in the same area, moving northwards along the demarcation line). Militants fired on Vodyane from the direction of Sakhanka, using 82 mm and 120 mm mortars. Small arms fire came from the direction of Kominternove. The ATO forces’ advanced positions near Lebedynske and Vodyane repeatedly came under fire from the enemy sniper groups.
Militant tanks are still present in the Petrovskyi district of Donetsk. During the past weekend, the IR group’s network identified a total of 14 tanks in this district. The armor is mostly deployed in groups of 2-3 pieces each.
Armored vehicles are being transferred to Horlivka through Yenakijeve – we recorded the transfer of 8 ACV’s (five BMP-2’s and three MT-LB’s, self-driven). Three Ural trucks with personnel followed the same route.
Terrorists continue regrouping their forces in the coastal regions. In the vicinity of Telmanove (northwards, in the direction of Rozdolne), we spotted the leapfrogging transfer of up to 10 various armored vehicles: MT-LB’s, BTR’s, two BMP’s, and one IMR-2 (obstacle-clearing engineering vehicle).
The “DNR” command is actively working to create its own “military fleet.” “Officially,” the so-called “Azov Fleet of the DNR” was created in May 2015, comprised of 5 fishing vessels and pleasure boats, which the militants dubbed “attack craft.” As of now, there are 7 such “combat units,” while three more are in preparation to being “commissioned for combat.” At the moment, [the “DNR” command] have activated organisational and staffing processes, while simultaneously pushing for Russia’s help in supplementing the “navy.” The main bases of the “Azov Fleet of the DNR” are designated as Novoazovsk (“main base”), Sjedove and Bezimenne.
The “DNR” leadership is negotiating with Moscow in order to supplement its “navy” with motor craft used by the Russian FSB Border Service. Militants’ requests, which are under consideration by Moscow, include three reasonably new 12150 “Mongoose” Russian patrol craft, and one new 12200 “Sable” border patrol craft (both types are used by the coast guard of the Russian FSB Border Patrol).
A unit of “marines” is also being formed in the “Azov Fleet of the DNR.” According to the IR group’s data, this unit is to be staffed and supplied by the forces and resources of the former 9th separate motorized rifle regiment of the “1st DNR Army Corps.”
Source: Dmitry Tymchuk FB
ACV – armored combat vehicle
AGS-17 – automatic grenade launcher
ATO – Anti-Terrorist Operation
BMP – infantry fighting vehicle
BTG – battalion tactical group
BTR, APC – armored personnel carrier
BRDM – armored reconnaissance and surveillance vehicle
BRM – armored reconnaissance vehicle
DAP – Donetsk International Airport
DNR – “Donetsk People’s Republic”
DRG – sabotage and reconnaissance group
KSM – command and staff vehicle
LNR – “Luhansk People’s Republic”
MT-LB – light multipurpose tracked vehicle
MLRS – multiple-launch rocket systems
TZM, TLV – transporter-loading vehicle
SPG-9 – stand-mounted grenade launcher
ZU-23-2 – anti-aircraft artillery system
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