Report # 225. AFU must stop shelling civilians

April 7, 2023

1. Putin: AFU must completely stop shelling Donbass and other areas

During the meeting with Acting Head of the Donetsk People’s Republic Denis Pushilin on April 6, the latter informed that the main task on the agenda now is related to shelling that has been President Putin discussed at their last meeting when he asked the President to bolster air defence and counter-battery activity against the enemy. Denis Pushilin informed that such measure has been achieved and that shelling has almost halved, according to the statistics that Republic possesses.

In his reply President Putin observed that “The goal of all our military formations, including the Defence Ministry, volunteers and everyone else, is to ensure that there are no shelling attacks at all. Since their number has decreased, we are on track to get there.”

Though the number of NATO missiles and artillery rounds used by the Armed Forces of Ukraine against civilians in Donbass and other area reduced, their average quantity per 24 hours is still very high: totally 100-300 pieces used against 10-15 populated areas now located on the Russian territory where there are no military facilities.  The calibers frequently used are 152 and 155 mm.

2. Ukraine killed its own men after they surrendered

Russian President Vladimir Putin said that the Ukrainian Armed Forces destroyed 14 of their own servicemen who surrendered at one of the lines of contact, where Russian servicemen were also injured. "Here is what was reported yesterday [April 4]: at one of the lines of contact, 14 people - Ukrainian servicemen - surrendered. Fourteen! But it was too late, and a few of our military stayed there with them. They didn’t even guard them, so that later in the morning the soldiers could be taken out of the combat zone. The enemy fired three hundred shells on that one spot! Destroyed all their soldiers," Putin said on April 5 at a meeting with the acting head of the Donetsk People's Republic Denis Pushilin. "Unfortunately, our guys were also injured," the president added.

He stressed that in Ukraine, Russia was dealing with an extremely brutal regime that spared neither Russians nor its own. "Unfortunately, we are in fact dealing with a regime that is most brutal not only towards our citizens, but also towards its own," Putin said. "They behave in an extremely cynical and cruel way," he repeated. "Our goal is to push them [Ukrainian troops] away to such a distance so that they cannot cause us any harm," the Russian head of state explained.

3. Kiev disrupted Russian civilian communication satellites

Ukraine has been trying to disrupt Russian civilian comsats or communication satellites, Russian Foreign Ministry in Moscow said on April 5, adding that unspecified foreign states were aiding Kiev in the effort. “The Kiev regime, with the participation of specialists from a number of foreign states, is attempting to interfere with Russian civilian communication satellites. This is an outrageous violation of international law,” the MFA said, warning that Moscow was in its full right to “respond appropriately” and possesses all the “necessary capabilities” to do so.

It was not immediately clear how precisely Kiev had tried to disrupt the satellites, as the ministry did not elaborate on the matter any further. Russia has repeatedly experienced disruptions of TV broadcasts during the ongoing hostilities with Ukraine. Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky briefly appeared on TV in southwest Russia back in January, with Belgorod authorities acknowledging the disruption affected satellite broadcasts.

4. Kiev's forces on the defensive in Artyomovsk

Ukrainian forces aren’t retreating from the city of Artyomovsk (called Bakhmut in Ukraine) yet, founder of the Wagner Private Military Company Yevgeny Prigozhin said on April 6. "Let’s be clear, the enemy is not going anywhere. They have set up defense lines inside the city, first, along railroad tracks and also around high-rise buildings in the city’s western quarter," Prigozhin said, as cited on Telegram by his press service. "Once they leave Bakhmut, we will drive every last one of them out," he noted. "Undoubtedly, they will take up defensive positions near Chasov Yar and on the outskirts of Bakhmut," Prigozhin added.

So far, 15,000-20,000 Ukrainian troops have been killed in Artyomovsk since its recent siege.

5. Ukrainian drone attacked ZNPP

Renat Karchaa, advisor to the head of Rosenergoatom Co, described yet another provocation by the Kiev regime that sent a Polish-made drone named Warmate fitted with high explosive directly to Zaporozhye NPP or ZNPP on April 5.

The International Atomic Energy Agency or IAEA Director General Rafael Grossi again pretended that he did not know who had sent the UAV. The IAEA inspectors monitoring the developments at the station also could not realize where from it had appeared.

At the same time Rafael Grossi creates an impression that he is too proactive in terms of maintaining security of ZNPP. He is trying to "adjust" his initiative on nuclear safety and physical security at the station that has been dozens of times shelled by Armed Forces of Ukraine, and has never been attacked by the Russian servicemen who entered ZNPP in February-March 2022, and actually protected it from uninterrupted Ukrainian nuclear blackmail in the form of its permanent shelling and five times sending to it an assault forces on boats.

Grossi again visited the Zaporozhye NPP on March 29, 2023. It was Grossi’s second visit to the nuclear power plant in the past six months. His first visit to ZNPP took place in September 2022.

He inspected the plant facilities that had been damaged in Ukrainian shelling attacks, but once again made no comments. In particular, he could see the site between the coolant reservoirs at the fourth power unit that had been hit by a Ukrainian rocket. Rafael Grossi is unable or does not have any desire to maintain nuclear safety and physical security at the station – one of the biggest in Europe – and to stop Ukrainian attacks on it.


Written by Vladimir P. Kozin


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