Spot report by the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission (SMM) to Ukraine: "DPR" member opened fire towards an SMM patrol on the outskirts of Shyrokyne, 7 April 2015

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This report is for media and the general public.

On 7 April, while traveling east on road E58 toward a “Donetsk People’s Republic” (“DPR”) checkpoint in Shyrokyne (20km east of Mariupol, 99km south of Donetsk), the SMM was halted by an improvised “DPR” roadblock, located on the northern edge of Shyrokyne (“DPR”-controlled). As the SMM approached the checkpoint on foot, a patrol member immediately encountered warning shots of heavy machine gun fire to his right, and semi-automatic rifle fire to his left.

The SMM proceeded to make contact with a “DPR” member, emerging from a nearby trench, to negotiate passage through the roadblock. After some discussion, and a search of SMM vehicles by “DPR” members, the SMM patrol was allowed to proceed. Prior to departing the scene, the SMM saw two cars enter Shyrokyne at high speed and four cars depart at high speed. The cars, with “DPR” members on board, had no number plates. “DPR” members at the scene told the SMM that Ukrainian Armed Forces personnel had been targeting the stretch of the E58 highway directly east of Shyrokyne in the past two weeks. As the SMM left the scene, it travelled east on E58, where it observed the wreckage of several vehicles which had been recently destroyed by machine gun and anti-tank missile fire (see SMM Daily Report 30 March, 6 April). The SMM continued travelling east towards Novoazovsk on E58, at the border between Ukraine and the Russian Federation.

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Michael Bociurkiw
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Iryna Gudyma
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