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Ukraine army launches next stage of military op 'to isolate Slavyansk'

Published time: April 25, 2014 12:19
Edited time: April 25, 2014 13:51
Ukrainian soldiers stand guard in front of an armoured personnel carrier at a checkpoint in the village of Malinivka, east of Slaviansk in eastern Ukraine April 24, 2014.  (Reuters/Marko Djurica)

Ukrainian soldiers stand guard in front of an armoured personnel carrier at a checkpoint in the village of Malinivka, east of Slaviansk in eastern Ukraine April 24, 2014. (Reuters/Marko Djurica)

Kiev authorities say “the second stage” of the military operation in the eastern Ukrainian city of Slavyansk has been launched, which will “completely isolate” the anti-government stronghold. Self-defense forces are preparing for an assault.

Follow RT’s LIVE UPDATES on military operation in eastern Ukraine

Ukrainian troops were ordered to commence the next stage of the so-called ‘anti-terrorist operation’ around 12pm local time (10:00 GMT), according to coup-appointed acting head of presidential administration Sergey Pashinsky.

“The aim is to completely isolate Slavyansk to localize the problem. At the moment, the operation is ongoing,” the official told media as quoted by RIA Novosti.

Ukrainian armed forces have set up a military base some 20 kilometers from Slavayansk, RT's stringer, Ukraine-based British journalist Graham Phillips reports. According to Phillips, there is an ongoing buildup of troops in the area and “snipers hiding in forests in position.” The city is being encircled, he tweets.

The military do not intend to storm Slavyansk, fearing civilian casualties, the Ukrainian Security Service has claimed.

“We will not go the length of [civilian] casualties, to storm the city. We understand that this may lead to many people coming to harm,” General Vasily Krutov, first deputy head of the Ukrainian Security Service (SBU), was quoted as saying by Interfax.

Pashinsky meanwhile repeated earlier Kiev’s claims that “terrorists have placed their key strong points in kindergartens and hospitals,” branding the situation in Slavyansk as “classic terrorism.” The claims have been dismissed by Slavyansk activists as “ridiculous.”

Despite the promises of no storming of the city planned, Slavyansk self-defense activists have braced for an assault, which they fear may soon start under the guise of the city’s “blockade.”

Self-defense activists cited by ITAR-TASS have claimed that a convoy of military armored vehicles and troops bearing “no insignia” was spotted moving in the direction of Slavyansk and then “disappeared in the woods” surrounding the city.

Comments (462)


freedom 26.04.2014 11:37

Jonathan Scott 26.04.2014 00:17

you call us eimperialist, yet you are the only country to invade and annex another country since Iraq in 1989 .ie georgia and Ukraine


Well if you want to get technical the entire US is a stolen annexed country with the exception of Alaska that was purchased from Russia.

Rea ly Crimea is a grey area well it was formerly Russian, then given to Ukraine when it was part of the Soviet union basicly to itself then. but well if they decided to join Russia again with last Ukraine government eliminated by madian. Well unsure if i would label and invaded & stolen


Kessner 26.04.2014 02:28

Erick Martin 26.04.2014 00:56

Well us started by stealing all of California from Mexico, invaded panama, Nicaragua , Cuba , Puerto Rico . And all the coups that have been backed by the American government all over South America


Ca lifornia is as argumentive as Texas so that will be forever in the air, How ever panama, Nicaragua is correct, I can't verify Puerto Rico, for some reason this is considered a state, but then again not. Government has me confused here on this. And so far Cuba has been a failed attempt. Even now with that twitter thing they had going, that is eluding me.


Dan Worth 26.04.2014 01:50

Sobieski 26.04.2014 01:31

Too bad Serbia is surrounded by countries that hate Russia: Romania, Hungary, Croatia. Good luck, Serbia, you're a bunch of cheap mafiosi like your hero, Arkan.


Countries hate Russia? Did you poll every citizen?

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