Donbass

DPR Village Resident Says Ukrainian Bombings Destroying Homes Street By Street

Zaitsevo, a village in the north of the Donetsk People’s Republic, has been relentlessly shelled by Ukrainian forces/paramilitaries since 2014, and continues to be bombed nearly every day and night.

The population has dropped from 3,500 to 1,600, including 200 children.

I interviewed Irina Dikun, head of the administration of Zaitsevo, who spoke at length on the terror civilians have faced over the years and continue to face with the Ukrainian bombing that erupts nearly every single night, targeting civilian homes and village infrastructure.

“Those who could leave, left. Mostly it’s elderly remaining here. None of the ceasefire agreements (24/5) reached here. Not more than 1 or 2 days of ceasefire,” she said.

“They are destroying street by street in the town. They take one street and destroy it house by house. Then they turn to another street.
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Zaitsevo resident: “We are not living, we are surviving”

Yesterday, I was able to visit areas on the outskirts of Gorlovka: mine 6/7 and Zaitsevo, both hard-hit by incessant Ukrainian shelling. Civilians are suffering immensely there, to the silence of Western corporate media.

En route to these areas, Dmitri, press officer of the DPR People’s Militia, gave me this advice:

-When you hear the whistle of a mortar, drop down immediately–to avoid the spray of shrapnel.

-Don’t go off the road; most areas haven’t been checked for unexploded ordnance.

-They (Ukraine) use drones with explosive devices; you don’t know whether its a reconnaissance drone or one that can bomb [I remember this very well from Gaza].  If someone yells air attack, you need to run to find a shelter with a roof. When you hear the ‘outgoing’ call from the spotter, you have 10 to 15 seconds to run.

He spoke of the heavy artillery Ukraine uses in spite of the “ceasefire”, and how Ukraine hides their shelling from the OSCE by doing so after hours (when difficult to film, in dark), claiming any damage was done by the DPR side (to itself), or say they (Ukraine) were merely defending themselves, replying to DPR attacks.

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[See this:

“In the period from September 2 to September 8, 86 ceasefire violations by Ukrainian armed formations were recorded. Overall, 918 rounds of ammunition were fired (8.5 tons or 99 boxes).

During the designated period, the enemy fired at the DPR 40 152mm artillery rounds and more than 260 120mm and 82mm mortar rounds. Two civilians were wounded and 23 houses and infrastructures facilities were damaged in shelling.”

A new comprehensive, lasting and indefinite ceasefire came into force in Donbass at 00:01 on July 21.”]

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Ukraine’s War on Donbass: An Interview With Filmmaker Maxim Fadeev

max

The following is an interview conducted by email with a documentary maker based in Donetsk, who has been documenting Ukraine’s war on the Donetsk People’s Republic and the tragedies this has caused civilians living there.

‘Maxim Fadeev’ is actually the pseudonym of a correspondent whose family lives in an area of Ukraine controlled by the government. To protect his family, Maxim, like many journalists whose families live on the other side, opted to use a pseudonym, due to persecution by the Ukrainian authorities.

In fact, even journalists living and working in such areas openly and transparently are persecuted. One prime example is that of Kirill Vyshinsky, editor of RIA Novosti Ukraine, arrested and imprisoned by Ukraine in May 2018, the authorities alleging treason. Vyshinky has 15 months later still not had an actual trial.

UPDATE: As of August 28, Kirill Vyshinsky has finally been released, although he still has not had a fair trial. Sadly, his case is not unique; journalists in Ukraine have very real fears of being persecuted, as do their lawyers. Maxim Fadeev and his family would be a prime target, given the nature of his courageous and damning documentary work.

More on Maxim, as told to me by his colleague:

“Max Fadeev is one of the most prominent filmmakers who has captured the war in the east of Ukraine: his unique footage from the fighting in the midst of the battles was shown on both Russian State TV channels as well as US-funded Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. Very few in the industry have dared plunge so deeply into unfolding events. At one stage, he was living with the rebels (militia fighters) for several days during a bloody assault on the terminal building at Donetsk airport, the enemy, the Ukrainian military, being stationed only a hundred meters away. Max daringly filmed an offensive operation from within the Marinka settlement, which is located close to the city of Donetsk. The footage was used by a dozen clip makers – almost every video about Donbass contains his footage (the most famous example has almost 3 million views on YouTube: https://youtu.be/NyCD3LqfbJ8).

Max Fadeev has shot 16 films since May 2014 (https://vimeo.com/maxfadeev), and now, despite the fact that this war is almost forgotten, he and his team independently continue to work on serious documentary projects to show and document what is happening on his native land.”

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