Russian-occupation forces fired small arms at the car of the observation group of the Ukrainian Joint Center for Ceasefire Coordination and Control (JCCC) in Mariupol direction, according to the Ukrainian delegation to the Trilateral Contact Group (TCG) in Donbas.
"On May 3, in an effort to disrupt the systemic work of the Ukrainian side of the JCCC, Russian-occupation forces fired at a car of the observation group from a 7.62 mm machine gun. Two bullet exit holes were found in the car body. This is the first time of its kind from the implementation of a comprehensive ceasefire," the Ukrainian delegation said on Facebook.
On the fact of the violation, the Ukrainian side of the JCCC collected the relevant evidence base and sent a note to the OSCE SMM.
"This gross violation of the ceasefire is a vivid proof of the unwillingness of Russia to end the war in Ukraine and testifies to attempts to further escalate the armed confrontation along the the contact line of the sides," the delegation said.
As noted in the Ukrainian side of the JCCC, "one of the most important steps of the Ukrainian side to implement measures to strengthen the ceasefire was the deployment in July and August 2020 of a network of observation groups along the entire contact line, which currently includes 13 observation posts, 11 of which are equipped with cars white with a special inscription, located at the front edge in the enemy's field of vision."
"It is the effective comprehensive control of the situation on the part of the Ukrainian side of the JCCC, the timely detection of violations and informing the OSCE SMM about them that make the occupation fighters look for ways to counter these control measures," the Ukrainian JCCC said on its Facebook page.
"In particular, due to the operational work of the units of the Ukrainian defenders and observers of the State Security Service of the JCCC 'Mariupol' within April, some 77 ceasefire violations by the occupiers were identified and stopped, an impressive evidence base of their crimes was collected," the JCCC said.
According to the Ukrainian delegation to the TCG, "the Russian side has thus launched the next stage of an information campaign to discredit additional measures to strengthen the ceasefire of July 22, 2020."