Spot Report by OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine (SMM), based on information received as of 19:00, 26 April: Intense fighting in Shyrokyne and amassing of forces
On 26 April, the SMM observed what it assessed to be the most intense shelling in Shyrokyne (20km east of Mariupol) since fighting began in the area in mid-February 2015. For the last 12 hours, and on-going at the time of this report, the SMM has observed sporadic to continuous exchanges of fire involving small arms, machine gun, rocket propelled grenade and automatic grenade launcher.
Throughout the day, from two adjacent observation posts, located 1,5km west and 4,5km north-west of Shyrokyne, the SMM observed 69 outgoing tank shots, originating from 600 metres south-east and 800 metres north of its position, 191 outgoing mortar rounds (82mm) and 153 outgoing mortar rounds (120mm), originating from 600 metres south-east, 300 and 1,500 metres north-west and 800 metres north of the its position.
At 07:20hrs, the SMM heard two loud explosions, most likely caused by 122mm incoming artillery rounds, impacting about 300 metres from the SMM observation post in the eastern outskirts of Berdianske (government-controlled, 18,5km east of Mariupol, 1,5km west of Shyrokyne) and forcing the SMM to relocate to another observation post.
In the early afternoon, between 15:00 and 16:30hrs, the shelling was heard all the way to Mariupol.
On 26 April, the SMM Unmanned/Unarmed Aerial Vehicle (UAV) observed 11 tanks and four armoured personnel carriers (APCs), with infantry mounted, moving through Kulykove (“Donetsk People’s Republic” (“DPR”)-controlled, 15km north of Shyrokyne). Additionally, over the last three days, the UAV has sighted seventeen tanks, three self-propelled howitzers and 60 APCs in a “DPR”-controlled area 50 kilometres north of Shyrokyne.