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Ukrainian troops open mortar fire at Donetsk's western suburb — media
The settlement of Staromikhailovka in Donetsk's western suburb has come under shelling from Ukrainian troops, a source in the law enforcement agencies of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic (DPR) said on Friday.
"At about 19:00 local time, Ukrainian troops opened intense fire at the settlement of Staromikhailovka," the Donetsk News Agency quoted him as saying.
Fire, according to the source, was opened from the positions of Ukrainian troops in Krasnogorovka with the use of mortars and armored vehicles. No information about damage or casualties is available.
Earlier on Friday, the DPR defense ministry said that Ukrainian troops had committed 153 ceasefire violations over the past day.
The Trilateral Contact Group on Ukraine comprising senior representatives from Russia, Ukraine and the European security watchdog OSCE on February 12, 2015, signed a 13-point Package of Measures to fulfil the September 2014 Minsk agreements. The package was agreed with the leaders of the Normandy Four, namely Russia, Germany, France and Ukraine.
The Package of Measures, known as Minsk-2, envisaged a ceasefire between Ukrainian government forces and people's militias in the self-proclaimed republics in Donetsk and Lugansk starting from February 15 and subsequent withdrawal of heavy weapons from the line of engagement. The deal also laid out a roadmap for a lasting settlement in Ukraine, including local elections and constitutional reform to give more autonomy to the war-torn eastern regions.
On January 13, the Trilateral Contact Group meeting in the Belarusian capital city Minsk supported the initiative of Russia's new chief negotiator Boris Gryzlov on yet another, the seventh, ceasefire in Donbass from 00:00 on January 14. However Ukrainian troops reportedly continue to violate ceasefire and the Contact Group stated at its regular meeting on January 20 that the ceasefire regime was not observed and the situation in Donbass had deteriorated.
[Source: Itar Tass, Moscow, 22Jan16]
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