Spot report by the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission (SMM) to Ukraine: Renewed Intensive Fighting in the Shyrokyne Area, 12 April 2015
Following an SMM-facilitated, three-day period of relative calm, at 18.35hrs on 11 April, the SMM – positioned on the eastern outskirts of government-controlled Berdianske (2km west of “Donetsk People’s Republic” (“DPR”)-controlled Shyrokyne) – heard a tank round being fired. It assessed it to have been fired from government-controlled territory approximately 500 metres from its position, and to have impacted in or around Shyrokyne.
As the SMM was leaving the area – 15 minutes following the firing of the tank round – it heard a small arms and machine gun fire engagement between forces in Berdianske and Shyrokyne.
At 19.05hrs, the SMM in Mariupol heard what it assessed to be intermittent to heavy mortar fire in the Berdianske-Shyrokyne area, and saw flashes indicative of such fire from that area. The engagement lasted approximately three hours.
The Joint Centre for Control and Co-ordination – based on observations by its personnel in Bezimenne (located between Berdianske and Shyrokyne) – later confirmed the SMM’s general observations, but added that artillery had also been deployed, in what it described as intensive fighting. It also said that the “DPR” had claimed there were an unspecified number of civilian casualties in Shyrokyne as a result of the fighting. Although the SMM was denied access to Shyrokyne by the “DPR” on 11 April, it intends to follow up on these claims as soon as possible.