18:47 Apr. 13, 2016
Ukrainian casualties are measured in thousands as the war enters third year
Two years have passed since the start of the so-called Anti-Terrorist Operation (ATO) in eastern Ukraine. Thereafter the number of war victims has reached tens of thousands.
The decision to start the ATO was taken on April 13, 2014 in response to the attempts by pro-Russian illegal armed groups to seize administrative buildings and offices of security forces in the Donbas region.
On April 12, the day before the Anti-Terrorist Operation was launched by Ukraine's National Security and Defence Council, a group of the so-called ‘little green men' seized the police stations in the towns of Slovyansk and Kramatorsk.
At that time the "rebels", who turned out to be pro-Russian militants, were supported by the local police and authorities. This allowed them to build a network of roadblocks in the eastern cities.
After two years of war and series of agreements, peace is yet to come to Ukraine. Servicemen of Ukrainian Armed Forces and civilians continue to fall victim to ‘ceasefire' violations on a daily basis.
More than 30,000 people have suffered from Russia's undeclared war in eastern Ukraine, including 9,000 killed, and more than 21,000 injured.
About 1.6 million Ukrainians were forced to leave their homes and move to other cities.
The government of Ukraine has held six waves of mobilization in a desperate attempt to protect the country.