Latest from OSCE Special Monitoring Mission (SMM) to Ukraine based on information received as of 18:00 (Kyiv time), 5 September 2014
This report is for media and the general public.
In Kharkiv, the SMM monitored a demonstration of 100 protesters in support of the Ukrainian armed forces and citizens of Mariupol at the Shevchenko monument in the evening hours on 4 September. The SMM also monitored the end of another protest in front of the Consulate of the Russian Federation. Both protests were monitored by the police and were peaceful.
In Luhansk, the SMM visited the “Krasna Talivka” border checkpoint (72 km north-east of Luhansk) where the border guards confirmed that 20 shells hit the area and showed the SMM two shell craters containing missile fragments. The SMM also visited the border crossing points at “Melovoe-Chertkovo” (140 km northeast of Luhansk), “Prosyanoye” (142 km north of Luhansk) and “Novabyeloya” (184 km north of Luhansk) where the situation was calm and the border guards stated that the situation remained unchanged and no Russian military movement was observed.
In Donetsk, while on patrol on the outskirts of Donetsk, in the “Oktyabrskiy” area, the SMM heard intense shelling targeting the airport and originating from both the east and the west. The SMM witnessed damage to several buildings, which were reported to have occurred on 4 September and include direct hits on the cultural house, five apartment buildings and a residential house with a total of two deaths being reported. Furthermore two “Grad” missiles landed within the Hospital complex causing three light casualties and some material damage. The Hospital continues to function.
The situation in Mariupol remained tense (see Spot Report of 5 September).
In Dnipropetrovsk, the SMM monitored a ‘Peace Rally’ in Berdyansk (280 km south-east of Dnipropetrovsk) in support of a peaceful solution to the crisis. The protest was attended by 400 to 500 people and was monitored by the police. Several speakers were women who called the NGO “Mothers of Russia” to join hands. The protest was peaceful when the SMM left the scene.
In Odessa, the regional administration building was cordoned off and guarded by police for several hours due to a bomb threat. The location was cleared in a few hours. At 14:00 hrs, the SMM monitored a protest in front of the building with some 40 protestors holding red flags with hammer and sickle. Police arrived at around 15:00 hrs and the protest ended peacefully.
In Chernivtsi, the SMM visited Miliyevo village (80 km south-west of Chernivtsi) where a tense gathering of 90 local residents and four priests took place in front of the church. The village is divided between supporting the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Moscow Patriarchate or the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Kyiv Patriarchate. The Head of the village council informed the SMM that the split is being discussed as a result of the “Anti-Terrorist Operation” and with the support of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Kyiv Patriarchate. The SMM visited the church in Kybaky village (60 km south-west of Chernivtsi) and was informed that the church is changing its support from Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Moscow Patriarchate to Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Kyiv Patriarchate.
In Ivano-Frankivsk and Lviv the situation was calm.
In Kyiv the SMM monitored a protest with fifty women participants in front of the government administration building, demanding the withdrawal of Kyiv volunteer battalions from the area of the “Anti-Terrorist Operation”. At 13:00 hrs the protestors blocked the traffic on Khrushevskogo street and shortly afterwards dispersed. The police was not present.