Latest news from the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine (SMM), based on information received until 18:00 hrs, 16 June (Kyiv time)

Situation Report
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This update is provided for media and general public

The situation across the country was calm, except parts of Donbas where tensions remained. There was no substantive change to the security situation in Donetsk city, which - on the surface at least - remained calm. Repairs to a key Donetsk water-supply pipeline were underway. The SMM has not reestablished communication with the four monitors from the Donetsk team and four monitors from the Luhansk team with whom it lost contact on 26 May and 29 May respectively.

In Kharkiv the situation remained calm. On 15 June, at 18:00, approximately 200 opponents of Ukraine’s unity marched in the city centre. This was observed by around 50 police officers. Protestors held Russian and Soviet flags, ‘Luhansk and Donetsk People’s Republic’ flags as well as St. George ribbons. The rally was followed by approximately 500 EuroMaidan demonstrators, holding the national flag. Bystanders on the street exchanged verbal accusations.

The SMM met the director of the centre for social work of Krasnohrad (80 kilometres southwest of Kharkiv) who informed SMM that the district administration and centre of social work decided that each local administration will identify private families available to receive IDPs. Furthermore, the local administration should also look for employment possibilities for IDPs in their territory. The intention was to accommodate IDP families with elderly women so that IDPs would assist the elderly in exchange for accommodation.

In southern parts of the Luhansk region, the situation remained tense. According to media and to SMM interlocutors, on 16 June, Metalist, in the northeastern outskirts of the city, and Aleksandrovsk, in the west of the city, came under attack at 01:00 and 16:00 respectively. Aleksandrovsk used to be the stronghold of the ‘South Eastern Army’, but it remained unclear which side was in control of both locations, and casualty figures were still unavailable.

On 15 June a Maidan activist, who had been held by the ‘South Eastern Army’ in the Ukrainian Security Service (SBU) building in Luhansk, died in hospital shortly after being released. His death was reported in the media and later confirmed by different sources to the SMM.

In Donetsk the SMM was informed by Mayor Oleksandr Lukyanchenko that repairs to the damaged water pumping station and pipeline, 5 kilometres southeast of Sloviansk, were underway. This supply system provides water to an estimated one million people in the city and millions more in the oblast (see Spot Report, 15 June 2014).

'Mayor' Vladimir Pavlenko of Sloviansk called the SMM in Donetsk repeatedly to request a ceasefire in the area of Mandrykine, three kilometres southeast of Sloviansk, to carry out repairs to a key power-line, which was damaged in recent fighting.

The situation in Dnipropetrovsk, Kherson, Chernivtsi, Ivano-Frankivsk, and Lviv remained calm.

In Odesa the SMM observed about 150 demonstrators who protested outside the Consulate of the Russian Federation. Police allowed them through the cordon to place flowers on the fence and the gate of the Consulate and to deliver a petition. There was no apparent response from the Consulate. About 30 of the protesters covered their faces. Some of the group attempted to bring tyres to the site but were blocked by the police. Present at the scene were: 150 police, 60-70 riot police, 60-80 unidentified personnel in camouflage uniforms, 30 private security personnel and 25 individuals belonging to the Odesa battalion.

Violence broke out between some of the protesters and the private security group who charged the masked protesters. The private security personnel were wearing a variety of green camouflage uniforms and green military helmets, no insignia, and black flak jackets and black batons. This group was involved in chasing and beating some of the masked activists who tried to break the cordon, some of the private security personnel were separated from the group and beaten by the protesters. One of the protesters appeared to be seriously injured and was observed being taken away in an ambulance, unconscious, following the clashes. Other minor injuries were observed amongst those involved.

At 17:00 the Governor and chief of police arrived at the scene and spoke with the protesters. The chief of police agreed to investigate the events. The protest organisers then called on the group to disperse.

In Kyiv the SMM monitored a demonstration held in front of the central headquarters of the SBU. The SMM spotted approximately 30 individuals wearing military fatigues in front of the building. The participants requested the implementation of proper security procedures in order to prevent further casualties among Ukrainian forces (referring to the downing of a Ukrainian military transport plane on 14 June). The demonstrators dispersed peacefully after one hour.


Iryna Gudyma
Senior Press Assistant
OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine
26 Turgenevska Street
01054 Kyiv
Mobile: +38 067 4021716

Michael Bociurkiw
OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine
26 Turgenevska Street
01054 Kyiv
Office: +380 44 382 0832
Mobile: +38 067 4083107