Common border line of Ukraine and the Russian Federation now turned into battle line. This was the announcement deputy head of State Border Guard Service of Ukraine, Serhiy Astakhov, made during his media briefing in UkraineCrisisMediaCenter.
During last fortnight attempts to break through the border became more numerous. Almost every day armed clashes take place. «Yesterday one of the crossing checkpoints in Luhansk was besieged by a group of armed insurgents, approximately 300 people. Terrorists prepared roadblocks and ambushes in advance. Tonight they assaulted Ukrainian subdivision using grenade guns and different types of small weapons. Ukrainian border guards shattered six assaults. Our border guards were almost unharmed, there is only one lightly wounded military man», – noted Serhiy Astakhov.
Representative of border guard service informed that tonight three vehicles were intercepted at the border with the Russian Federation. One vehicle was moving from the Ukrainian side to meet the Russian convoy and escort them on the territory of Ukraine: «There was stockpile of weapons of war inside these vehicles. In total, 28 Kalashnikov guns, 6 machine guns, 3 grenade guns, 4 sniper rifles and 40 boxes with ammunition and grenades. During this operation border guards detained 13 people. A woman carrying 10 thousand US dollars was among them».
There are other evidences of acute situation in Ukrainian-Russian border:
- May 21: border guard division «Krasnodon» quelled an attempt to enter Ukraine from Russia outside the checkpoint, 3 KamAZ vehicles;
- May 22: border guard division «Sverdlovsk» stopped an attempt of 4 KamAZ vehicles to break through from Russia, followed by armed people;
- May 22: border guard division «Stanychno-Luhanske» was attacked by terrorists three times; all the assaults were shattered – 5 wounded military men among border guards;
- May 27: border guards at «Biryukovo» located a vehicles convoy crossing the border from the Russian side; as a result of the fighting, border guards detained three vehicles, one raider was badly wounded and five killed; there were Kalashnikov guns, light anti-tank grenade launchers and explosives.
Mr. Astakhov states that the situation at border crossing checkpoints is not least stringent: «Per calendar day 149 citizens of Russia were refused the entry, as their intentions caused border guards’ suspicion. Works on border strengthening continue at eastern area: 51 engineer groups are involved and over 90 special equipment units are working. All our border reserves are mobilized, located at the eastern border and act within their competence. Border protection will be efficient when all the services are functioning as a whole».
Representative of border guard service also noted that they are receiving information on the facts of synchronized actions of terrorists on Ukrainian territory and from Russia: «We record cases of putting armed people across, when cleared strips for vehicles passage were cut through at Russian border, and later the same people approached the Ukrainian border, trying to fill ditches made along the borderline. We keep recording such cases. Coordination between terrorists already acting in the territory of Ukraine and those trying to support them from the adjacent territory, 100% exists, such things do not happen accidentally».