Briefly about the most important today's events in our digest of events
that have happened in Ukraine today
Linkevičius: Thousands units of heavy equipment in the east of Ukraine
Separatists and Russia informally backing them have deployed thousands units of heavy weapons to the occupied territories of Eastern Ukraine; therefore, military operations in Donbass may be resumed any time, Linas Linkevičius, Lithuanian Foreign Minister, asserted after a meeting with Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Pavlo Klimkin, as reported by Delfi.
According to Mr Linkevičius, the security situation in eastern Ukraine is unstable and fragile, as lots of heavy equipment including tanks has been concentrated not only in and around Donetsk and Lugansk, but also in other occupied areas.
"There must be reasons for this equipment to be moved up there, so it is hard to ignore the possibility of escalation," he said.
OSCE: Lugansk separatists ordered to prevent
observers from entering border areas.
PRL rebels have confirmed that OSCE observers are not allowed to enter occupied territories bordering with Russia, Radio Liberty reported on Tuesday. The observers had a conversation with a rebel commander in the town of Krasnodon, Lugansk region, who said that he had received an order from his high command to prevent the OSCE mission from coming into border areas without a written permission from the PRL authority.
According to the OSCE mission, the same kind of refusal was voiced by a Cossack ataman in Sverdlovsk, who also said that a two-kilometre-wide area along the Ukrainian border with Russia would be closed to the OSCE mission.
The Minsk agreement guarantees a free access for OSCE observers to all parts of Ukraine. However, Russia does not allow them to visit the annexed Crimean territory.
Furthermore, observers have constantly complained that both parties set multiple restrictions on OSCE activities in the Donbass war zone.
Terrorists resume attacks in the Donetsk direction
Rebel gunmen have centred fire on army positions near Avdiyivka, Opytne, Pisky, Vodyane, Verkhnyotoretske, Veselivka Druga, Novolaspy, Starognativka, and Schastya.
According to the ATO press centre, Russian and terrorist forces carried out attacks on our positions near Avdiyivka, Opytne, Pisky, Vodyane, Verkhnyotoretske, Veselivka Druga, Novolaspy, Starognativka, Schastya with artillery, mortars, tanks, machine-guns, and heavy machine-guns in the past 24 hours.
Insurgents fired only 120-mm mortars after midnight.
Pisky, Granitne, Avdiyivka came under fire too. The village of Kamianka was shelled with 152-mm artillery.
In the Artemivsk direction, rebels attacked Losove and Granitne.
One shell strike was reported in the Mariupol direction. The village of Shyrokine was attacked with 82-mm mortars for almost an hour.
Rebel drones intensified their activity at night. They were spotted spying in the sectors Smile-Krymske, Smile Nyzhnye, Nyzhnye-Zolote, Mariupol-Malakine, Frunze-Krymske, as well as over Shyrokine.
Several groups of mercenaries come to Donbass from Russia
Several groups of Russian mercenaries - 250 soldiers in total – have arrived in Donbass from the RF as part of a “rebel unit” in order to reinforce insurgents," the head of the Information Resistance Group, MP Dmytro Tymchuk, posted on his Facebook.
He also noted that a motor convoy consisting of 12 vehicles was spotted moving in an area between Lutugine and Chervony Luch. The column included several units of engineering equipment, and was heading toward Debaltseve.
Another column of 4 trailers and 3 trucks accompanied by 2 APCs was observed en-route from Donetsk to Lugansk.
Militants shelled Stanyzia Luganska with heavy armaments at night
Militants continue to attack Stanyzia Luganska with heavy weapons, the head of the Lugansk Regional State Administration, Gennady Moskal, reported on his website on Tuesday.
According to him, Stanyzia Luganska and adjacent villages were mortared twice in the past 24 hours, namely at 11 pm and 2.30 am.
The attack was carried out from the right bank of the Siversky Donets, which is occupied by the so-called PRL.
Apart from Stanyzia Luganska, hostilities were reported in a number of localities along the demarcation line.
Rebels repeatedly fired grenade launchers on the town of Schastya last night.
General Staff: 10 service members were wounded in the ATO area in the past 24 hours
No one died, but 10 service members were wounded in the past 24 hours in the area of the anti-terrorist operation, a spokesman for the Ukrainian National Security and Defence Council, Andriy Lysenko, reported at a briefing on Tuesday.
Stoltenberg to Lavrov: Russia has to withdraw its troops from Ukraine
NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said on Tuesday he had told Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov that Russia must withdraw all troops and heavy weapons from Ukraine and end its support for separatists.
The western military alliance's chief added that he had informed Lavrov, after a meeting in Brussels that he was concerned about the large number of military exercises carried out by Russia at short notice.
"We also discussed the need for transparency, especially when we have an increased military presence along our borders... for NATO it is important to do whatever we can to avoid that incidents are spiraling out of control," he told reporters.
NATO has repeatedly criticized Moscow's involvement in the Ukraine conflict and demanded it fully implement a Ukraine ceasefire agreement. Russia denies providing any troops or arms to support rebellion in eastern Ukraine.
Captured Russian service members give names and reveal targets
Two Russian servicemen from a special reconnaissance unit captured in a battle with the Ukrainian Aidar battalion in Donbass on Saturday were taken to Kyiv on May 18 to face charges for terrorist activities with Moscow denying the servicemen were on duty at the moment of their capture.
The TSN presented an exclusive interview with the captured Russian troopers.
Oleksandr Aleksandrov and Yevgeny Yerofeyev have confirmed that they used to belong to a Russian reconnaissance unit stationed in the city of Togliatti and confessed that they had received new IDs and uniforms in Lugansk region, when joining rebel forces.
One of the captured soldiers repeated Kremlin’s statements about coming to Donbass as an insurgent.
Capturing two wounded Russians by Ukrainian forces is seen by many as a crucial evidence of Moscow’s direct military involvement in the Ukrainian conflict, which adds to many other reports presented by Ukrainian officials, NATO, international journalists, and NGOs.