Slavyansk militiamen reported on Friday that fierce fighting had resumed in the village of Semyonovka. “At the moment, intense artillery strikes are being carried out against roadblocks near Semyonovka. The Vostochny neighborhood has come under fire as well. The Ukrainian army is not currently using combat aircraft, but fierce fighting continues,” a local militia headquarters spokesman told Interfax.
Nearly all civilians have already fled the fighting in Semyonovka, where almost all houses have been damaged by artillery strikes, he said. It is not yet known whether any militiamen have been injured in the events.
Representatives of the people’s militia of the city of Slavyansk in eastern Ukraine’s embattled Donetsk Region have shot down a helicopter of the Ukrainian Air Force, the Novorossiya news agency quoted the militia command as saying. The Mil Mi-8 transport helicopter was damaged by bullet fire and performed an emergency landing on Thursday, TASS news agency reports.
Slavyansk people’s mayor Vyacheslav Ponomaryov said that at least two helicopters were shot during the battle.
“It happened to the east of Slavyansk,” he specified, adding that according to preliminary data, three tanks were also damaged.
Fierce clashes between Ukrainian military and militia near Slavyansk have been ongoing since June 3. Ukraine’s armed forces use attack aviation – fighters and helicopters.
According to Ponomaryov, during fighting on June 3, militiamen shot down two aircraft, including a Su-25 (NATO reporting name Frogfoot) attack aircraft, a Ukrainian Air Force helicopter, and damaged four armored vehicles. Another helicopter was shot down on June 4 after a regular air strike on the settlement of Semyonovka near Slavyansk.
Militias were formed in Ukraine’s southeastern Donetsk and Lugansk regions because the territories refused to recognize the legitimacy of central Ukrainian authorities brought to power amid riots during a coup in February.
Donetsk militia claims to have shot down Ukrainian army’s plane, 2 helicopters over Slavyansk
Militiamen of the self-proclaimed “Donetsk People’s Republic” claim they have shot down two helicopters and one airplane of the Ukrainian Armed Forces over Slavyansk in the past 24 hours. “Occasional random artillery strikes have been launched in Slavyansk. An airplane and two helicopters belonging to Ukrainian security forces have been brought down over the city in the past 24 hours,” “Southeast Front” spokesman Kostyantyn Knyrik told Interfax on Thursday.
Interfax has so far been unable to obtain either confirmation or denial of the report from other sources. Continuing armed clashes have already disrupted the operations of a local electrical substation, as well as the city’s water supply, Knyrik said. “Two electricity transmission lines are not functioning, as a result of which power supplies to facilities of the “Voda Donbassa” utilities enterprise in the Slavyansk district have been disrupted.
As a result, Slovyansk and another three cities – Kramatorsk, Druzhkivka and Kostyantynovka – have been left without water,” he said. Militiamen also accused Ukrainian soldiers of destroying an electric transformer near the central district hospital in Krasny Lyman.
“An electric transformer near the central district hospital was blown up in Krasny Lyman yesterday, causing a power outrage in this district. Gunfire from the positions of Ukrainian forces was heard at 1:00 am (GMT) last night. The railway station building in Krasny Lyman has been damaged as well,” Knyrik said.
Read more: http://voiceofrussia.com/news/2014_06_06/Ukrainian-forces-using-tanks-to-attack-Slavyansk-4695/