Michael MacKay, Radio Lemberg, 01.12.2017
Ukraine liberated another village. The village of Verkhniotoretske lies between Horlivka and Donetsk city, in Donetsk region in Ukraine. It is on the Ukrainian side of the battlefront of Russia’s invasion of Europe in Donbas. Volunteers who support the Ukrainian armed forces reported on social media that elements of the 95th Air Assault Brigade liberated the village of Verkhniotoretske on November 30. Semen Kabakaev said on Twitter: “Congratulations to our guys in the leading positions and to all involved. Good news in the evening!” Verkhniotoretske is no longer in the “grey zone” but is decidedly Ukrainian.
Russia bombarded the villiage of Verkhniotoretske on 20 separate occasions since the start of the “school-year ceasefire” that supposedly started on August 23. In fact, Russia violated the school-year ceasefire within minutes of its supposed start, and has escalated the violence of its attacks in the 100 days since. In its 20 ceasefire violations at Verkhniotoretske, the Russian invader-occupiers attacked with mortars, grenade launchers, and small arms. The Russians have been intentionally shelling the residential area of Verkhniotoretske. The Ukrainian armed forces have a duty to protect Ukrainian lives and property, and have an unfettered right to do so on the territory of Ukraine. The Ukrainian army moved in to Verkhniotoretske.
This small victory by the Ukrainian defenders of Europe against the Russian invaders of Europe follows up on last week’s small victory north of Horlivka. The villages of Hladosove and Travneve, in Donetsk region, Ukraine were taken under complete control by the Ukrainian armed forces. Then, as now, the Ukrainian army high command was quiet about it, but the liberation was confirmed by Ukrainian soldiers posting on social media, by a partial observation by the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission, and by the social media posts of the Russian terrorists in the so-called “DPR.”
Each village that Ukraine liberates from the Russian invaders means more Europeans living free and fewer living in captivity. Militarily, the Ukrainian armed forces is better able to take the fight to the Russian forces that are bombarding defenders and civilians alike, from their side of Putin’s invasion battlefront. These are small steps, but small steps make up the long journey of the liberation of Donetsk, Luhansk, and Crimea from the invaders from Russia.