Spot report by the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine (SMM), 14 October 2014: Fighting around Ukrainian Military Checkpoint near Smile
This report is for media and the general public.
A Ukrainian military checkpoint c. 40km northwest of Luhansk city is surrounded by irregular armed personnel. There are 12 reported casualties, two of whom are confirmed by the SMM.
On the evening of 13 October, a Ukrainian military officer told the SMM that armed forces affiliated to the “Lugansk People’s Republic” (“LPR”) had advanced towards a Ukrainian military checkpoint (CP) between Khoroshe and Smile (approximately 40km northwest of Luhansk city), and had issued the Ukrainian soldiers there with an ultimatum: either surrender or face attack. Early in the morning of 14 October, a Ukrainian military officer attached to the Joint Control and Co-ordination Centre (JCCC) in Debaltseve (75km northeast of Donetsk city) told the SMM that fighting was on-going around the CP in question.
Later that morning, a Ukrainian military CP commander near Frunze (45km northwest of Luhansk city) told the SMM that the CP between Khoroshe and Smile was surrounded by “LPR” irregular armed forces. He said that a relief convoy – consisting of three Armoured Personnel Carriers (APC) – had been ambushed by “LPR” irregular forces 2.7km west of Smile, resulting in, he said, 12 Ukrainian military casualties – dead and wounded – and two burnt-out APCs remaining at the scene.
Following an unsuccessful Ukrainian military attempt to retrieve the dead and wounded – involving a tank and two APCs – the SMM approached the “LPR” irregulars, and obtained a promise that the injured would be evacuated by the “LPR” and provided with medical treatment. Whilst at the ambush site, the SMM observed two injured Ukrainian soldiers and four burnt-out APCs.
The SMM also observed fresh mortar impacts at the surrounded Ukrainian military CP, located 1km south of Smile.