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:
In the ATO zone of Donbas, from March 22 to 28, the intensity of shelling against Ukrainian troop positions and settlements on Ukrainian-controlled territory decreased slightly generally. In total, during this period, units of the Russian-terrorist forces (“1st DNR Army Corps” and “2nd LNR Army Corps”) carried out nearly 600 artillery raids (780 over the previous week) using 82/120-mm mortars, cannon artillery, 122-mm “Grad-P” portable rocket launchers, and the weaponry on armored combat vehicles.
At the same time, the command of the Russian-terrorist forces ordered a resumption of attacks on settlements in the occupied Russian territory of Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts, then further accused the Ukrainian Armed Forces (UAF) of the shelling. These armed provocations were marked by a high level of organization – as a rule, they were recorded when a large number of representatives of the Russian media arrived in a given location. Thus, the main task for the given media representatives became the preparation of a series of staged scenes of a “sharp aggravation” of the situation in Donbas caused by the alleged shelling of the peaceful settlements by the UAF, and coverage of the preparations for a mythical large-scale attack by the UAF. During this period, daily management reports were recorded by the leaders of the “1st DNR Army Corps” and the “2nd LNR Army Corps,” in advance of the prearranged (time and place) visits to localities to enable film crews from Russian TV to record staged material.
During this period, activity by enemy sniper groups increased substantially at the frontline, with the simultaneous transfer of additional sniper units to Donbas from Russia (usually drawn from units of the Main Intelligence Directorate of the General Staff of the Russian Federation Armed Forces). Observed also was the transfer of Russian snipers from amongst Russian mercenaries and local militants trained at training centres in the Rostov oblast. Thus, a sniper group of 20 Russian service personnel, including women, arrived near Rovenky. The “9th regiment of the 1st Army Corps” (deployed in the Novoazovskyi district) is actively staffing its divisions up to full strength with snipers arriving from Russia. By the end of March, militants aim to have fully staffed divisions in this area.
In the district of Donetsk (along the entire section from Pisky to the ring road near the Almaz), units of Russian-terrorist troops are hurriedly increasing stocks of anti-tank weapons. Near the DAP, the occupiers have covertly moved antitank assets (at least two anti-tank missile systems and three MT-12 Rapira anti- tank guns) up to the front line. Additionally, several stand-mounted anti-tank grenade launchers have been transferred to the western outskirts of Spartak.
A tank unit of the occupier’s has been pulled back from the front line. Previously, it operated opposite the Avdiivka industrial zone, near elevation 272.2, and was used to shell both the industrial zone and the old quarter of Avdiivka (seven camouflaged tanks in scattered formation). At the same time, the occupiers have restricted the movement of civilians and road traffic in the Kashtanove district near Vokzalna Street, a possible sign of the redeployment of a new unit to this area.
Near Mineralne (Yasynuvatskyi district), the “1st DNR Army Corps” command has deployed two militant motorized infantry companies (several Kamaz trucks staffed by personnel in unmarked uniforms).
In order to ensure the supply of weapons, fuel and ammunition to both units and formations of the two “Army Corps”, ten 122-mm “Grad” MLRS (including six with ammunition), about 20 tanks, at least 15 BMP infantry fighting vehicles and about 1,300 tons of fuel and lubricants were delivered from Russia.
The latest consignment of Cossacks has arrived in Luhansk (about 50 personnel from the so-called Voyska Donskogo or “Don Militia”).
Between March 27-28, 2017, artillery spotter training took place in the “1st brigade” and “9th regiment” of the “1st DNR Army Corps”.
Military exercises are underway for armoured vehicle and tank group crews of the “1st DNR Army Corps” at the training ground near Ternove (Shakhtarsk district).
Near Shakhtarsk, the militants have set up a sapper training base at the “DNR Ministry of Emergency Situations” centre.
The “DNR” leadership intends to initiate an “inspection of ecologically hazardous facilities” for the benefit of representatives of international organizations (primarily the OSCE) on sites located near the demarcation line on Ukrainian-controlled territory. Initiation of this issue is being launched within the framework of the “Humanitarian programme for the reunification of the people of Donbas”. The official purpose is to check the level of environmental threat to human habitation in the adjacent areas. However, according to the “DNR” leaders’ plans, the composition of the commission carrying out these inspections should include representatives of the “State Committee for environmental policy and natural resources reporting to the ‘DNR’ leader” – set up in mid-March of this year, “environmental experts” from the “DNR”, and representatives of international organizations (representatives from Ukraine are not expected to take part).
In the “LNR”, a sharp rise in crimes committed by “service personnel” of the “2nd LNR Army Corps” is being recorded. In the Perevalsk district, three militants trying to break into a poultry farm to carry out a robbery shot the guards (two women guards killed and one wounded) using automatic weapons. Armed raids and robberies have been recorded in Rovenky, Luhansk and Alchevsk (all crimes committed by two to three persons wearing “LNR people’s militia” uniforms and armed with automatic weapons).
Source: Dmitry Tymchuk FB
AC – Army Corps
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
ELINT – Electronic Intelligence
GRU – Russian Defense Intelligence, the main military foreign-intelligence service of the Russian Federation
KSM – command and staff vehicle
LNR – “Luhansk People’s Republic”
MGB – Ministry of State Security
MOD – Ministry of Defense
MT-LB – light multipurpose tracked vehicle
MLRS – multiple-launch rocket systems
OMSBR – Independent Motorized Rifle Brigade
SBU – Ukrainian Secret Service
SPG-9 – stand-mounted grenade launcher
TZM, TLV – transporter-loading vehicle
UAV – Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (drones or other)
ZU-23-2 – anti-aircraft artillery system
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