Latest from the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine (SMM), based on information received as of 19:30, 7 April 2017
This report is for the media and the general public.
The SMM observed more ceasefire violations in both Donetsk and Luhansk regions compared with the previous reporting period. The Mission followed up on a report of a civilian casualty in Avdiivka and damage to houses from shelling and gunfire in Shevchenko and Dokuchaievsk. The Mission monitored the disengagement areas near Stanytsia Luhanska, Zolote and Petrivske, but its access there and elsewhere remained restricted.* It continued to observe weapons in violation of withdrawal lines on both sides of the contact line. The SMM visited three border areas currently not controlled by the Government in Uspenka, Novoazovsk, and Dovzhanskyi. In Kyiv, the SMM followed-up on media reports and monitored the situation around the district court building.
In Donetsk region the SMM recorded more ceasefire violations,  including about 410 explosions, compared with the previous reporting period (about 180 explosions). The majority of explosions were recorded in the Avdiivka-Yasynuvata-Donetsk airport area and the Svitlodarsk-Debaltseve area.
On the night of 6-7 April, while in “DPR”-controlled Donetsk city centre, the SMM heard 33 undetermined explosions 3-6km north-north-west. On the night of 6-7 April, the SMM camera at the “DPR”-controlled Oktiabr mine (9km north-west of Donetsk city centre) recorded one airburst 8-12km north-east, 18 undetermined explosions 3-5km north-north-east and 6-12km north-east. The camera also recorded in sequence one rocket-assisted projectile in flight from north-east to south-west, one undetermined projectile in flight from south to north, followed by 20 projectiles (14 from north to south and six from south to north) and 14 tracer rounds in flight from north to south.
On the night of 6-7 April, the SMM camera in government-controlled Avdiivka (17km north of Donetsk) recorded 28 explosions assessed as the impacts of rounds from unidentified weapons and eight undetermined explosions 3-5km east-south-east. The same camera recorded in sequence one rocket-assisted projectile in flight from west to east, one rocket-assisted projectile in flight from south to north, followed by 29 projectiles (ten from west to east, ten from north to south, and nine from south to north) and 35 tracer rounds in flight from south to north. On the morning of 7 April, the camera recorded nine undetermined explosions 3-6km east-south-east.
During the day of 7 April, positioned in “DPR”-controlled Yasynuvata (16km north-east of Donetsk) for about four and a half hours, the SMM heard one explosion assessed as the impact of a round from an unidentified weapon 0.5-1km north-west, and 98 undetermined explosions 2-5km at directions ranging from south-west to north-west. Positioned in Avdiivka for five and a half hours, the SMM heard 30 undetermined explosions 2-5km south-east.
On the evening of 6 April, while in “DPR”-controlled Horlivka (39km north-east), the SMM heard 46 explosions assessed as the impacts of rounds from unidentified weapons 10-12km south-west. On the same evening, while in government-controlled Svitlodarsk (57km north-west), the SMM heard 22 explosions assessed as outgoing 82mm mortar rounds, 23 explosions assessed as outgoing rounds from cannon (73mm) of infantry fighting vehicles (IFV) (BMP-1), and 85 undetermined explosions, all 3-4km south-east.
On the night of 4-6 April, the SMM camera in Shyrokyne (20km east of Mariupol) recorded five undetermined explosions and a total of 80 tracer rounds: in sequence five tracer rounds in flight from west to east; two from east to west; ten from west to east; 40 from east to west; 30 from west to east; and three from east to west. All were at undetermined distances north and north-east of the camera.
In Luhansk region the SMM recorded more ceasefire violations, including about 350 explosions, compared with the previous reporting period (about 110 explosions).
On the evening of 6 March, while in “LPR”-controlled Kadiivka (formerly Stakhanov, 50km west of Luhansk) the SMM heard 13 explosions assessed as artillery rounds 10km west.
During the day of 7 April, positioned in “LPR”-controlled Svitle (11km north of Luhansk) the SMM heard 113 undetermined explosions 15km south-west. Positioned in government-controlled Lobacheve (17km north-west of Luhansk) the SMM heard 50 undetermined explosions 7-10km south-west. Positioned in “LPR”-controlled Sokilnyky (38km north-west of Luhansk) the SMM heard one explosion assessed as the impact of mortar or artillery round 5km west-south-west.
Positioned in government-controlled Katerynivka the SMM heard, within 20 minutes, 30 explosions assessed as 82mm mortar rounds, over 60 explosions assessed as automatic-grenade launcher fire, 100 bursts of heavy-machine-gun fire, and more than 1,000 shots of small-arms fire 0.5-3km south-east, as well as 22 undetermined explosions 5km south, two undetermined explosions 5km south-west, and 150 shots of small-arms fire 5km south.
The SMM also recorded ceasefire violations, which it attributed to live-fire exercises outside the security zone.  Positioned in “LPR”-controlled Petrovenky (40km west of Luhansk), the SMM heard 21 undetermined explosions more than 15km south-east. Positioned in “LPR”-controlled Mamusheve (formerly Krasnyi Luch, 21km west of Luhansk) the SMM heard four explosions assessed as artillery rounds 7km south. Positioned in “LPR”-controlled Bokovo-Platove (54km south-west of Luhansk) the SMM heard five explosions assessed as outgoing artillery rounds and four outgoing salvos of multiple-launch rocket systems (MLRS) fire 8km south.
The SMM followed up on a report of a civilian casualty and damage to houses from shelling and gun-fire. The SMM followed up on a report by a Ukrainian officer of the Joint Centre for Control and Co-ordination (JCCC) about a civilian casualty in government-controlled Avdiivka. Medical staff in a hospital in Avdiivka told the SMM that on the previous evening a man (aged 44) had been treated for shrapnel wounds to his left shoulder, and he had been discharged from hospital after treatment. According to the interlocutor, an explosion had occurred while the man was near his backyard of his residence on 229 Soborna Street in Avdiivka.
In “DPR”-controlled Dokuchaievsk (30km south-west of Donetsk) the SMM, accompanied by a Russian officer of the JCCC, observed two impact sites. On 96 Lenin Street the SMM saw two holes on the west-south-west-facing wall of a bakery at the entrance of a supermarket, two broken west-south-west-facing windows which had been repaired with plastic film, and traces of smashed glass on the floor inside. The SMM assessed two holes as having been caused by 12.7mm bullets fired from a west-south-westerly direction. A woman (aged 20) told the SMM that while working in the bakery, at 19:00 on 6 April she heard shooting and a window behind her had broken. The Mission also saw one hole on the west-south-west-facing wall of a closed electronic shop building in front of the supermarket, and assessed it as having caused by a 12.7mm bullet fired from a west-south-westerly direction.
In “DPR”-controlled Shevchenko (38km north-east of Mariupol) the SMM, accompanied by a Russian officer of the JCCC and “DPR” members, observed five fresh impact sites. On 40 Myra Street the SMM saw severe damage to a house: the ceiling of its two rooms had been partially collapsed, all windows had been blown out, and the upper part of the north-facing wall had been destroyed. The SMM assessed the damage as having been caused by a 122mm artillery round. A resident told the SMM that a shell had directly hit his house at around 03:00 on 7 April, and his wife had been injured, and transported to a hospital in “DPR”-controlled Boikivske (formerly Telmanove, 67km south-east of Donetsk). At the hospital a member of the medical staff said that in the early morning he had treated the woman transported from Shevchenko, and had removed a shrapnel fragment from her left hip.
On 42 Myra Street of Shevchenko the SMM observed broken east-facing windows of a house and damage to the roof. The SMM also observed two fresh craters in a field 50m south-west of a house on 48 Myra Street, and assessed them as having been caused by 122mm artillery rounds fired from west-north-westerly or north-westerly direction. On 52 Myra Street the SMM saw damage to a tree with branches cut 15m away from a house with shrapnel damage to its window frame facing north – direction of the tree. The SMM assessed it as having caused by an artillery round. On 49 Myra Street, the SMM saw a fresh crater on a roadside – 15m south-west of a house, and assessed it as having been caused by a 122mm artillery round fired from a north-westerly direction. The SMM saw the broken windows and damage to the wooden garden fence of the house. On the same street, the SMM saw DTEK engineers fixing broken electrical wires. About 200m from the impact sites, the SMM saw three military-type trucks parked in the garden of a small hangar.
The SMM continued to monitor the disengagement process and to pursue full access to the disengagement areas of Stanytsia Luhanska (16km north-east of Luhansk), Zolote (60km west of Luhansk) and Petrivske (41km south of Donetsk), as foreseen in the Framework Decision of the Trilateral Contact Group relating to disengagement of forces and hardware of 21 September 2016. The SMM’s access remained restricted but the Mission was able to partially monitor them.*
Between 21:30 on 6 April and 02:35 on 7 April, the SMM camera in Stanytsia Luhanska recorded fire burning 2.5-3km south-south-east in an area with summer houses east of the Prince Ihor monument (outside the disengagement area).
During the day of 7 April, positioned in government-controlled Stanytsia Luhanka the SMM heard one undetermined explosion 2km south-east (assessed as outside the disengagement area).
Positioned in government-controlled parts of Zolote (60km west of Luhansk), the SMM heard one shot of small-arms fire 1km east (assessed as outside the disengagement area).
Positioned in Petrivske, the SMM heard eight bursts and 13 shots of small-arms fire 0.5-1km south-east (assessed as outside the disengagement area).
The SMM continued to monitor the withdrawal of weapons, in implementation of the Package of Measures, its Addendum, and the Memorandum. 
In violation of the respective withdrawal lines in areas not controlled by the Government, the SMM saw: seven MLRS (BM21 Grad, 122mm), seven tanks (T-72), seven self-propelled howitzers (2S1 Gvozdika, 122mm) and 12 towed howitzers (five 2A65 Msta-B, 152mm, two 2A36 Giatsint-B, 152mm and five D-30, 122mm) at the Luhansk aerodrome in the south-eastern part of Luhansk city. In government-controlled areas, the SMM saw four towed howitzers (2A65) near Pryvilne (31km north of Mariupol) in a compound. An SMM mid-range unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) spotted one surface-to-air missile system (9K35 Strela-10, 120mm) near Muratove (51km north-west of Luhansk) on 6 April.
Beyond withdrawal lines, but outside storage sites, in government-controlled area, the SMM saw ten towed howitzers (2A36) near government-controlled Khlibodarivka (65km south-west of Donetsk); and two stationary surface-to-air missile systems (9K37, 400mm) near Pryvillia (81km north of Donetsk).
In a non-government-controlled area the SMM saw 12 stationary tanks (type unknown, with engines running) in a training area near Kruhlyk (31km south-west of Luhansk).
The SMM observed weapons that could not be verified as withdrawn, as their storage does not comply with the criteria set in the 16 October 2015 notification. In government-controlled areas beyond the respective withdrawal lines, the SMM saw: 13 towed howitzers (2A36), 31 tanks (T-64) and 12 MLRS (BM-21). The SMM observed that 18 towed howitzers (2A36) continued to be absent.
In such sites in non-government controlled areas, the SMM saw four towed howitzers (two D-30, and two 2A65). The SMM observed that the following weapons continued to be absent: seven MLRS (BM-21), eight self-propelled howitzers (2S1 Gvozdika, 122mm), eight anti-tank guns (MT-12 Rapira, 100mm) and five towed howitzers (2A65), four of which for the first time.
The SMM revisited Ukrainian Armed Forces permanent storage sites, whose location corresponded with the respective withdrawal lines, and observed as missing: 32 tanks (12 T-72 and 20 T-64, one of which was observed missing for the first time) and 16 mortars (13 2B9 Vasilek, 82mm, two PM-38, 120mm and one M-120 Molot, 120mm, which was observed missing for the first time).
The SMM observed armoured combat vehicles  and an anti-aircraft weapon in the security zone. In government-controlled areas, the SMM saw on 6 April: 21 stationary IFVs (BMP-2) near Popasna (69km west of Luhansk); one IFV (BMP-1) travelling north and two IFVs (BMP-1) heading south near Troitske (69km west of Luhansk). On 7 April, the SMM saw three IFVs (BMP-1) near Luhanske (59km north-east of Donetsk). An SMM mid-range UAV spotted one IFV (BMP-1), six armoured personnel carriers (two BTR-70, one BTR-80, two MTLB, and one BRDM) and one anti-aircraft gun (ZU-23) near Muratove on 6 April.
At the southern entrance to Yasynuvata, the SMM saw fresh tracks on the road, which it assessed as from an armoured personnel carrier (APC). The tracks continued to the next roundabout where they turned towards north-west. Also in the area around the railway station and petrol station in Yasynuvata, the SMM saw fresh tracks from APC on the road.
In “DPR”-controlled Kozatske (36km north-east of Mariupol), the SMM saw multiple fresh tracks, which it assessed as from tanks on the main road into the village.
The SMM visited three border areas currently not controlled by the Government. At the Uspenka border crossing point (73km south-east of Donetsk), in about 30 minutes the SMM saw seven civilian cars (four with Ukrainian licence plates, two with Russian Federation licence plate, and one with “DPR” plates) enter Ukraine, and 11 civilian cars (six with Ukrainian licence plates, four Russian Federation licence plate and one with “DPR” plates) and one truck (with Ukrainian licence plates) exit Ukraine. At the Novoazovsk border crossing point (40km east of Mariupol) in about 35 minutes, the SMM saw 16 civilian cars (ten with Ukrainian licence plates, four with Russian Federation licence plates, and two with “DPR” plates) enter Ukraine, and 12 civilian cars (six with Ukrainian licence plates, five Russian Federation licence plates and one with “DPR” plates) exit Ukraine. At the Dovzhanskyi border crossing point (84km south-east of Luhansk), in about an hour, the SMM saw the following exit Ukraine: 15 civilian cars (nine with Ukrainian licence plates, six with Russian Federation licence plates), one unmarked minivan with five men on board (with Azerbaijan licence plates), one bus (with Ukrainian licence plates, marked Krasnyi Luch-Rostov with about 30 passengers on board), one bus (with Ukrainian licence plates, marked Moscow-Donetsk with about 35 people on board) and one man on foot. The SMM saw the following enter Ukraine: 19 civilian cars (11 with Ukrainian licence plates, seven with Russian Federation licence plates, one with “LPR” plates), three cargo trucks with covered trailers (all over 3.5 tons, two with Ukrainian licence plates, one with Lithuanian licence plates), one bus (with Ukrainian licence plates with about 40 people on board) and a man and a woman on foot. At the end of its observation, the SMM saw 23 civilian cars (15 with Ukrainian licence plates, three with Russian Federation licence plates, two with Lithuanian licence plates and three with “LPR” plates) in a queue to exit Ukraine. There were 17 civilian cars in the parking lot (seven with Ukrainian licence plates, seven with Russian Federation ones and three with “LPR” plates) as well as a taxi (with Ukrainian licence plates).
In Kyiv, the SMM monitored the situation around the Obolonskyi district court building, where, according to media reports, a closed court hearing of 12 former members of the former Tornado volunteer battalion accused of violent crimes allegedly committed in the conflict area was being held. The SMM saw 20 people (mostly young men), three of whom were holding two flags with the insignias of former Tornado battalion and one of the Right Sector. At least 400 law enforcement officers were guarding the court building and the surrounding area. At a previous stage of the trial, the SMM had monitored clashes between law enforcement officers and supporters of the defendants. (See SMM Daily Report 10 August 2016.)
The SMM continued monitoring in Kherson, Odessa, Lviv, Ivano-Frankivsk, Kharkiv, Dnipro, and Chernivtsi.
*Restrictions of SMM’s freedom of movement or other impediments to fulfilment of its mandate
The SMM’s monitoring and freedom of movement are restricted by security hazards and threats, including risks posed by mines, unexploded ordnance (UXO) and other impediments – which vary from day to day. The SMM’s mandate provides for safe and secure access throughout Ukraine. All signatories of the Package of Measures have agreed on the need for this safe and secure access, that restriction of the SMM’s freedom of movement constitutes a violation, and on the need for rapid response to these violations. They have also agreed that the JCCC should contribute to such response and co-ordinate mine clearance.
Denial of access:
- At the Stanytsia Luhanska disengagement area, a Ukrainian officer of the JCCC told the SMM that its safety still could not be guaranteed in the areas surrounding the main road due to the possible presence of mines and UXO. The SMM informed the JCCC.
- The possible presence of mines and UXO prevented the SMM from travelling further south-east into the Zolote disengagement area from government-controlled Katerynivka (64km west of Luhansk). The Mission informed the JCCC.
- At an “LPR” checkpoint on the edge of the Zolote disengagement area, armed men told the SMM that its safety still could not be guaranteed in the fields and side roads due to the possible presence of mines and UXO. The SMM informed the JCCC.
- The SMM was unable to travel west from “DPR”-controlled Petrivske due to the possible presence of mines. The Mission informed the JCCC.
- The presence of anti-tank obstacles and mine hazard signs on the road prevented the SMM from traveling between Katerynivka and Popasna. Ukrainian Armed Forces personnel present told the SMM that the road was mined. The SMM informed the JCCC.
- The SMM still could not travel south of the bridge in government-controlled Shchastia (20km north of Luhansk), as Ukrainian Armed Forces personnel said there were mines on the road south of the bridge. The SMM informed the JCCC.
- Ukrainian Armed Forces personnel denied the SMM access to a compound in government-controlled Novooleksiivka (32km north of Mariupol). The SMM informed the JCCC.
- At a checkpoint in “DPR”-controlled Kozatske (36km north-east of Mariupol) an armed man prevented the SMM from proceeding towards east. The SMM informed the JCCC.
- At a checkpoint in “DPR”-controlled Staromykhailivka (15km west of Donetsk) an armed man again denied the SMM passage through towards west. (See SMM Daily Report 4 April 2017.) The SMM informed the JCCC.
 Please see the annexed table for complete breakdown of the ceasefire violations as well as map of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions marked with locations featured in this report.
 The decision of the Trilateral Contact Group on full cessation of live-fire training (exercises) as of 3 March 2016 stipulates that conduct of live-fire training (exercises) in the security zone is prohibited.
 Following renewed commitment made at the meeting of the Trilateral Contact Group on 29 March 2017 according to which the sides agreed on full adherence to the ceasefire and the completion of the withdrawal of weapons by 1 April, in the course of 31 March Ukrainian authorities and “LPR” members provided the SMM with some information related to weapons which they declared as withdrawn. The SMM received some information from “DPR” members on some weapons which they declared that they intended to withdraw.
 This hardware is not proscribed by the provisions of the Minsk agreements on the withdrawal of weapons.