Special Monitoring Mission (SMM) of the OSCE in Ukraine responded to accusations of the Ukrainian ATO HQ of being inactive and bearing partial responsibility for the shelling of the village of Zaitseve near Horlivka in Donetsk region, according to Deutsche Welle.
Responding to the request for comment from Deutsche Welle, the OSCE SMM stated that the mission is concerned about the events in Zaitseve. One of the mission’s patrols heard 46 explosions within just half an hour in “DPR”-controlled Horlivka on Saturday [January 30], and about 160 bursts of heavy machine gun from the direction of Zaitseve, according to the report.
The mission noted that its task is to gather information and report on the security situation, as well as to establish the facts in individual cases. Representatives of the OSCE CMM note that they continue to carry out their mission, including in Zaitseve.
Deputy Chief of OSCE SMM Ukraine Alexander Hug who spoke on 112 Ukraine TV channel OSCE SMM reiterated the mission’s concern about developments in Zaitseve, stressing that it is monitoring the situation near this village on a daily basis, reporting on facts of shelling, including from heavy weapons.
Information about the shelling in Zaitseve was included in the SMM report of February 1, the OSCE said.
“In neighbouring, government-controlled part of Zaitseve (50km north-east of Donetsk), the SMM observed in the area of an electricity substation five fresh craters, which it assessed had been caused by mortar rounds fired from the south-south-east. The SMM saw that power lines running to and from the substations were severed. According to Ukrainian Armed Forces personnel, shelling had occurred during the night between 30 and 31 January,” reads the report based on the data as of 19:30 on February 1, published February 2.
“In government-controlled Maiorsk (45km north of Donetsk), the SMM followed up on reports about shelling on 30 and 31 January. The SMM analysed three fresh craters located in the vicinity of a Ukrainian Armed Forces checkpoint and assessed that two of them had been caused by a 120mm mortar fired from the south,” reads the report. “The SMM found in a third crater remnants of a 120mm mortar round, assessed as having been fired from the south,” the monitors say.
“The SMM visited a house in the governmental-controlled residential part of Zaitseve which was severely damaged by shelling. The SMM saw that the whole roof was damaged and several windows shattered. The house has been rendered uninhabitable. According to residents, the shelling had occurred on 31 January at 18:15,” according to the SMM report.
In addition, “LPR” members continue to prevent the SMM from monitoring many areas alongside the border in parts of Luhansk region not controlled by the Ukrainian Government. “Armed “LPR” members refused to allow the SMM to enter a warehouse at a military-type compound in the north-eastern part of Luhansk city,” reads the report.