Donetsk Blog, May 30: Heavy Artillery Along Entire Front – Ukrainian Offensive – OSCE Under Sniper Fire


Ukraine’s civil war is still very much ongoing.  Both sides are exchanging fire. Civilians and soldiers continue to die on both sides.

DONi was recently founded by a Finnish journalist and Russian businessman whom we know, and we have every reason to believe that their reporting can be relied on as truthful.  More information about the agency follows below this report.

Due to its slow, simmering nature, events in Novorossiya rarely make headlines, so people forget there is a real war going on.

Donetsk, Friday, May 30, 16.30 pm. Exclusive to Russia Insider

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By the end of the week, the situation on the frontline sharply deteriorated. On the nights of May 27 to 28, Kiev shelled with the heavy artillery the western and northern outskirts of Donetsk as well as Dokuchaevsk in the southern direction. According to the DPR Defense Ministry, the Ukrainian side launched at least 10 152mm projectiles at the western outskirts of the DPR capital, and over a dozen explosions were reported on the northern outskirts.

Residents of Donetsk wrote that night in the social networks of fire engines rushing towards the shelled districts. On Saturday morning the local authorities confirmed the fact of fires in residential areas. According to their data, during the shelling two civilians were injured and 21 buildings damaged, including a kindergarten where new windows had just been installed.

The same night, Kiev shelled with artillery and mortars Dokuchaevsk in the southern, Mariupol direction. There the target of the Ukrainian side was apparently the dolomite plant, which caught fire after the direct hit by a mortar shell. The local authorities of the town reported that the Ukrainian military had fired over 40 rounds from 120 mm mortars.

The following night, from May 28 to 29, the work of Ukrainian heavy artillery was clearly audible, even in the central districts of Donetsk. Severe explosions were reported in social networks not only by residents of Donetsk but also by those of Gorlovka in the north; in Yasinovataya, one of the hottest points located between Gorlovka and Donetsk; as well as by inhabitants of several cities in the south.

Soldiers of the DPR Army reported a battle in which artillery and armoured vehicles were used on the northern outskirts of Donetsk as well as another attack in the area of Avdeevka. The Ukrainian assault group was repelled to their initial positions with one soldier killed and two wounded.

The day before, following the first heavy bombardments, Ukrainian volunteers wrote on social networks of a Ukrainian army offensive on certain sectors of the front, and even of Ukrainian military units occupying some DPR army positions. At the same time, they pointed out that the senior military authorities of the country were well aware of actions of the Anti-Terrorist Operation (ATO) forces, but had no intention of officially confirming them.

The ATO headquarters did deny the information of volunteers about the Ukrainian offensive, as well as earlier reports of volunteers stating that senior military authorities had issued an order not to open fire even in response. On Friday May 27, the ATO headquarters spokesperson reported of eight DPR bombardments of a Ukrainian position, after which, he said, the Ukrainian side returned fire.

By way of comparison, on the same day the DPR Defense Ministry reported of 266 bombardments of the DPR territory by Kiev, including 11 rounds from 152mm artillery and 12 from 122mm artillery.

Over the past week, according to the DPR Defense Ministry, Kiev carried out about 2,000 bombardments of DPR territory, including over 1,000 rounds from heavy weapons. The most intense attacks were in the Donetsk and Mariupol directions, which resulted in six DPR soldiers being killed and another four wounded, three civilians injured and 45 buildings damaged, including two kindergartens, a church, a dental clinic and a gas pipeline.

According to DPR soldiers on the ground, over the past two days the Ukrainian artillery aimed more at the residential areas of Donetsk and other cities than at the positions of the DPR army. In that time, eight residences, a kindergarten, a printing house and a base of the Emergency Ministry were damaged in Donetsk, and another five houses were damaged in Dokuchaevsk.

The particularly harsh attacks from Kiev led to the fact that for the first time in a very long time, according to DPR soldiers, they were authorised to open return fire without limiting themselves to small arms. As a result, the ATO headquarters reported of five dead and four wounded Ukrainian soldiers, while the DPR soldiers in positions near Avdeevka informed that the Ukrainian army had lost six men dead there alone.

At the same time, DPR intelligence reports, Kiev continues to deliver increasingly heavier weapons to the front line in all three directions of central Donetsk, northern Gorlovka and southern Mariupol, including heavy mortars, tanks, infantry fighting vehicles, armoured personnel carriers, self-propelled artillery systems, and motorized cannons, howitzers and anti-tank cannons, and “Grad” MLRS’s (see below pictures of weapons mentioned). The heaviest weapons, including 203mm “Peon” motorised cannons, were delivered in the Mariupol direction, while to the Gorlovka direction up to 200 radicals from the nationalist “Azov” and “Right Sector” battalions, together with about 30 mercenaries from a PMC, arrived.

International observers of the OSCE mission also documented the presence on the Ukrainian side of the front line of four “Strela” anti-air missile systems.

In addition, on Friday May 27, the OSCE and JCCC representatives, when they visited the site where the Ukrainian military had attempted a breakthrough near Avdeevka, they came under sniper fire from the Ukrainian side.

At the time of this writing, the sounds of heavy artillery can be clearly heard in the very centre of Donetsk. The sound of two explosions has just been heard

Information on weapons mentioned in this article

A mortar is a tube-like cannon which fires a projectile which explodes upon impact. They have ranges of up to 3 miles

An infantry fighting vehicle

A tank T-72

An armoured personnel carrier

A 152mm motorised artillery system “Akatsia”

A 120mm motorised artillery cannon “Nona”

A 122mm cannon D-30

An 100mm anti-tank cannon “Rapira”

A 203mm motorised cannon “Peon”

A MLRS “Grad”

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