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Events in Ukraine on 23 January 2015.

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Briefly about the most important today's events in our digest of events

that have happened in Ukraine today

 

Yatsenyuk orders to be ready in case of transition to a "wartime economy"

Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk has urged regional governors to prepare plans for mobilizing the national economy in case of a full-scale war in Ukraine.

"Unfortunately, not all regions have dealt with this issue well enough. I request that each region provide the final plan of mobilization of the national economy in the event we have to switch to a war footing," the prime minister said in a course of a conference call with heads of regional state administrations in Kyiv on Friday.

 

Semenchenko: Rebels abandon the 31st roadblock

Rebels have fallen back from their forward positions in some areas around the 25th and 29th roadblocks, and left the 31st roadblock, Semen Semenchenko, the commander of the Donbas battalion and an MP, reported.

"For the time being, divisions of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, Donbas battalion and National Guard have not taken up the roadblock and are holding their positions. The territory is free. The reason for that is that all buildings in the territory of the stronghold have been shattered completely and the area can be covered with fire in both directions," Semenchenko said.

Ukrainian military retreated from the 31th roadblock earlier, but tried to recapture it afterwards; battles also were raging around the 29th roadblock in recent days.

OSCE mission about the tragedy in Donetsk: 8 people died; shells were coming from the North-West

The shells that hit a bus stop in Donetsk on Thursday killing eight people were launched from the north-west, as reported by observers of the OSCE special monitoring mission in accordance with conclusions of the preliminary investigation.

"After having analysed two craters found on the scene, the observers came to a conclusion that shells were launched from the north-west," the statement reads.

According to the report, the attack was carried out either with mortars or artillery.

The OSCE observers arrived at the scene 20 minutes after the incident. They saw seven victims - three men and three women, while the gender of the seven victim has remained unidentified.

Three bodies were in a bus, another three in close proximity, and one in a car, which was 20 meters away from the trolley bus.

Later, the observers of the Special Monitoring Mission contacted a representative of the Donetsk city morgue, who reported that eight bodies had been delivered to the morgue.

Thirteen people wounded in the attack were taken to hospital. According to the chief doctor, they sustained serious wounds and require surgery.

Western journalists at the scene also confirmed the direction of the shelling. According to a report of Oliver Carroll, a U.S. expert who saw a picture of a crater from a shell, it was obvious that it had been created by a mortar shell with a range of under five kilometres.

The Ukrainian authorities have ruled out the possibility that the Ukrainian military could have carried out the attack, saying that their nearest artillery positions are 15 kilometres away from the scene in the village of Pisky, to the north-west of Donetsk.

Russia prepares the twelfth "humanitarian convoy"

"The Russian Emergency Ministry is preparing yet another column, which is to deliver humanitarian aid to Donbas. The time of dispatch of the humanitarian convoy is being ascertained," the Russian Emergency Ministry says.

As reported earlier, the 12th "humanitarian convoy" was due to be dispatched either in late January or early February.

It is a well-known fact that the intensity of shelling in the АТО area tends to increase upon arrival of Russian "humanitarian convoys".

Rebels carried out 115 attacks in the past 24 hours not bypassing inhabited settlements

Tensions were high in the anti-terrorist operation area as clashes went on in three sectors, the ATO press centre said.

"ATO forces were shelled 115 times with BM-21 Grad volley fire systems, artillery, mortars, guided missile launchers, self-propelled howitzers and machine-guns. Most strikes and clashes occurred at the day time, and the last shots were fired in Mariupol district near the town of Chermalyk at 14.15. Last night was relatively calm in the ATO area," the press centre posted on Facebook on Friday morning.

Grad systems were used to shell Krymske, Tonenke and Debaltseve, while there were four attacks on Stanytsia Luganska and two attacks on Yunokommunarsk with mortar, artillery and self-propelled howitzers. The settlements of Krymske, Pryshyb, Petrivka, Tryokhizbenka, Opytne, Maryinka, Zolote, Semyhirya, Kamianka, Mykolayivka and Shakhta Poltavska were shelled too, the press centre said.

PRD leader: There will be no ceasefire; we are to advance up to the border of Donetsk region

"There will be no attempts to launch peace talks from our side. Now, we will look at the reaction from Kyiv. They do not seem to have realized that we can advance on three fronts simultaneously," Zakharchenko said.

"There will be no more ceasefire, no more rotations. There will be an exchange of prisoners, because we have to free our guys held in captivity," he said.

He also added rebels planned to take control of the whole Donetsk region.

"We will advance until we reach the border of Donetsk region. If I see any threats for Donetsk region from any settlement, I will destroy that threat straight where it is," Zakharchenko said.

Lysenko: The number of Russian troops in Ukraine reaching a new all-time high

Russia has increased the strength of its military forces in the territory of Ukraine to the maximum level since the beginning of hostilities bringing the number of servicemen up to 9 thousand, a spokesman for the Ukrainian National Security and Defence Council, Andriy Lysenko, reported at a briefing.

According to him, the Russian Federation continues to strengthen its military forces in the east of Ukraine.

"The Headquarters of the Russian Armed Forces provides a constant supply of military personnel and equipment to the battle area, which are reinforced with air defence, communications, and air reconnaissance systems," the ATO spokesman said.

He also added, that a large number of ammunition - around 30-40 trucks daily - is brought in through uncontrolled sections of the Russia- Ukraine border.

ATO press centre: 3 killed, 50 wounded in the past 24 hours

Three Ukrainian servicemen were killed and another 50 wounded in the ATO area in eastern Ukraine in the past 24 hours, spokesman Andriy Lysenko said at a briefing.

"3 soldiers were killed and 50 others wounded within the past 24 hours," he said.

 

Rebels fire upon Debaltseve and Avdiyivka

A resident died this morning as a result of shell attacks on Debaltseve, Head of the Donetsk Regional Police Department Vyacheslav Agroskin reports.

"Rebels resumed artillery attacks on dwelling houses at 5.50 am Friday in the area of 8 March Street in Debaltseve. A civilian died," he said.

According to him, an operation and investigation squad of the town police department is working on the scene.

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