Government forces returned fire near Avdiivka after being shelled with banned weapons for nearly two hours, November 22 report says
The Russian-backed separatist forces violated the ceasefire 17 times over the past 24 hours, shelling the positions of the Ukrainian forces in both Donetsk and Luhansk regions.
This is according to a report, provided by Ukraine's Anti-Terrorist operation headquarters on November 22.
Ukrainian troops had to fight the militants off, after they had been shelled for nearly two hours near government-held Avdiivka, 20 kilometers north of Donetsk.
'The occupiers used the 120-mm mortars, banned by Minsk, as well as different grenade launchers and machine guns to attack Ukraine's armed forces near Avdiivka. ATO soldiers were forced to use an armored infantry vehicle and assault weapons' Ukraine's military rep Ivan Kryvyi said in an interview with the local 112 Channel.
The militants also used the 152-mm artillery and a tank to target the government forces in Hnutove village and several other areas near the city of Mariupol.
Mortars and infantry vehicles shelled Ukraine's servicemen in Shyrokyne, which had been the aim of the combatants for many months.
The report said clashes had occurred in the Luhansk region too, with mortars shelling the central-western village of Krymske.
SMM OSCE, in turn, published a report on the ceasefire violations during the past several days.
'The SMM recorded more ceasefire violations in #Donetsk region during the period between the evenings of 18 and 19 November, and fewer ceasefire violations during the period between the evenings of 19 and 20 November, compared with the previous reporting period', the report said.
In Luhansk region there was a deescalation in combat activity, the mission said. The number of explosions, observed by the monitors, was still estimated in hundreds.