SHAFAQNA (Shia International News Association)- Intense artillery fire has broken out in the pro-Russian city of Donetsk in eastern Ukraine at an unprecedented level since a shaky ceasefire took effect in the area over two months ago.
According to reports, the firing started in the central parts of the restive city at 2:00 a.m. local time on Sunday and still continues.
The number of possible casualties and level of damage is not known due to the midnight curfew imposed by the pro-Russian forces in Donetsk and the nearby city of Makiivka.
On Saturday, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) expressed concern over the situation in eastern Ukraine after its monitors, who are in Ukraine to observe the two-month ceasefire, witnessed unmarked military convoys and armed forces in the area.
“More than 40 trucks and tankers” were seen driving on a highway on the eastern outskirts of Makiivka, the OSCE representatives reported.
“Of these, 19 were large trucks — Kamaz type, covered, and without markings or number plates — each towing a 122mm howitzer and containing personnel in dark green uniforms without insignia. Fifteen were Kraz troop carriers,” the report said.
The OSCE monitors also said they had seen “a convoy of nine tanks moving west, also unmarked” southwest of Donetsk.
The report came a day after Ukraine’s army said it had spotted a large convoy of tanks and other heavy armaments entering the country from the Russian border.
This is while Moscow has repeatedly denied any military involvement in the conflict, reaffirming its commitment to the truce deal signed between Kiev and pro-Russian activists on September 5. Russia is also a signatory to the peace agreement.
Ukraine’s mainly Russian-speaking parts in the east have witnessed deadly clashes between pro-Russia forces and the Ukrainian army since Kiev launched military operations to silence the pro-Russia protests in mid-April.