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HIGHLIGHTS OF THE WEEK: AUG. 27 – 31

Source : 112 Ukraine

Developments in the conflict zone, Ilovaisk, Svitolina's success at the US Open, Sentsov's critical condition - news for the week on one page
22:00, 31 August 2018

1. Donbas conflict in Ukraine
2. Ilovaisk tragedy - the fourth anniversary
3. "School truce" equals "no truce"
4. Ukraine at US open and UEFA Champions League
5. Sentsov in critical condition

112 Agency

Donbas conflict in Ukraine

On August 25, the press office of JFO reported that one servicemen and one civilian died in Donbas conflict zone. Russian troops performed 39 attacks on that day. Later, on that day, it was informed that the militants used Minsk-banned weapons.

The enemy was firing at Pivdenne settlement on August 26 – no casualties among the civilians reported.

The report as of August 27 reads that the militants violated ceasefire seven times from the beginning of the day in the area of the hostilities in Donbas. Two Ukrainian soldiers were injured as a result of the battle actions.

On the evening of August 28 it was informed that the pro-Kremlin militants attacked Ukrainian positions five times, none of our servicemen got injured. Besides, Maiorske checkpoint resumed its operation after it was suspended due to the attacks from the snipers’ rifles on August 23.

Reportedly, the militants used heavy weapons on the next day, none of our soldiers was sounded. Is addition, Novotroitske checkpoint in Donbas conflict zone was closed for two days due to the wildfire on August 29. Red regime was introduced in the area.

Russian troops have attacked the Ukrainian positions in Donbas four times on August 30.

Moreover, Maksym Komisarov, the chief of the Defense Ministry's department for environmental safety and counter-mine activity, said that 1,858 people have suffered the consequences of mishandling explosives in Donbas. He added that over a hundred children sustained wounds due to mishandling explosives, 21 of them died.

Yet, on August 30, Dmytro Hutsulyak, the Spokesperson of the Defence Ministry, stated that the intensity of the attacks at the Joint Forces positions decreased in Donbas conflict zone.

Today, on August 31, OSCE SMM reported that they recorded 370 violations of the “school” ceasefire which began since midnight of August 29.

Ilovaisk tragedy - the fourth anniversary

This week Ukraine commemorated Ukrainian military servicemen who lost their lives in the Battle of Ilovaisk in late August 2014. 

Kyiv hosted rally in memory of Ukrainian soldiers perished during Battle of Ilovaisk

Eleven fighters of the Ukrainian military, participants in the 2014 battle of Ilovaisk are still in captivity of Russian mercenaries, according to the head of the Civil and Military Cooperation Department of Ukraine's Armed Forces Oleksiy Nozdrachev. 

Officially, 366 fighters of government forces deceased in the battle; 150 of them served with the Ukrainian army. Earlier, military prosecutor's office confirmed that 429 fighters were wounded in action; hundreds have gone missing.

In middle August 2014, it was under control of the Ukrainian troops. In late August, Ukrainian forces - the army, the volunteer battalions of the Interior Ministry, the National Guard and others - engaged the enemy, as pro-Kremlin mercenaries and the regular Russian troops went for a major attack to reclaim the city. Soon after the units of the regular Russian army arrived (August 23-24, 2014), Ukrainian troops ended up in a trap, surrounded by the enemy. On August 29, Russian leader Putin asked the militants to let Ukrainian soldiers out, leaving a corridor for them - on the condition that they leave disarmed. On August 30, the government troops began to move out, but the militants attacked them, killing and wounding many people. 

Ilovaisk, currently held by the Russian militants, is located in Donetsk sector of the combat area in eastern Ukraine.

"School truce" equals "no truce"

On August 22, the Trilateral Contact Group agreed to begin the school ceasefire in Donbas on August 29. However, already on the first day of the agreement, the OSCE reported more than 70 violations of the ceasefire regime.

Later, the headquarters of the Joint Forces Operation regularly reported about the violations of the school ceasefire regime by the pro-Russian militants. However, on August 30, it was reported that the intensity of the attacks decreased

Ukraine at US open and UEFA Champions League

This week was full of emotions in terms of sport events. On the one hand, Ukrainian football fans watched Dynamo Kyiv and Zorya Luhansk leave UEFA Champions League and Europa League, respectively. On the other hand, Ukraine’s top tennis players Elina Svitolina and Lesya Tsurenko defeated their opponents in Round 2 of the US Open, which boosted the morale of their supporters – both in their home country and abroad.

On August 28, Dynamo crossed swords with AFC Ajax in the second leg of UEFA Champions League fixture. The 0-0 draw favored the Dutch, but not the Ukrainians who left the tournament and went on to UEFA Europa League’s group stage.

Later, on Thursday evening, Zorya Luhansk nearly got their chance to proceed to UEFA Europa League group stage – in the away game with RB Leipzig. However, the late penalty shot buried Zorya’s last hopes to carry on in this competition; 3-2 loss sent the Ukrainian team home.

Ukraine’s No.1 in tennis Elina Svitolina beat German Tatjana Maria and made it to Round 3 of US Open. It took her two sets to defeat the opponent (6:2, 6:3). Later, Svitolina’s compatriot Lesya Tsurenko made her supporters happy by beating the world’s No.2 Caroline Wozniacki.

Earlier, Svitolina avoided giving any comments to a reporter of Eurosport Russia. The outlet's producer Maksim Yanchevsky reported that via Twitter. 'Elina Svitolina refused to speak to Eurosport Russia on the court after the victory in Round 1 of the US Open. She said 'I'm sorry, I can't' (in Russian) as she exited the court. In January 2018, everything was fine,' Yanchevsky wrote. 

Sentsov in critical condition


The week has begun with the bad news: Klyment, the Archbishop of Simferopol and Crimea got the refusal from the Russian authorities to pardon political prisoner Oleg Sentsov.

Later, UN Secretary-General António Guterres stated that Sentsov is in a critical condition. And the EU Permanent Council at OSCE asked the Russian government to release Ukrainian filmmaker and prisoner of Kremlin. 

Also, Sentsov got the wide world support. Ex-president of Poland offered to nominate him to the Nobel Peace Prize. In Prague, the dozens of activists held the silent meeting to support Ukrainian prisoner.

Moreover, President's Humanitarian Envoy at the Minsk peace talks from Ukraine claimed that Ukraine did not get Moscow’s reply to Kyiv’s offer to release more than 30 convicted Russians in exchange for the release of the Ukrainian hostages.

***

By the way, we are ready to sum up the whole month. What was the most important news in August 2018?

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