Donbas Militia Showcase Abandoned Ukrainian Tank With US Gear Inside

Europe
20:10 22.07.2015(updated 20:25 22.07.2015)

SPUTNIK INTERNATIONAL

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A Ukrainian tank seized by members of the Donbass People’s Militia is currently being repaired and will soon take up positions on the DPR’s side of the separation line, a Donetsk People’s Republic’s military spokesman said on Tuesday.

“A tank with a US-made Motorola intercom and radio communications system on board was abandoned by the Kiev forces as they beat a hasty retreat during a battle fought late last month. The tank will be restored and will equip our units soon,” Eduard Basurin said.

The T-64 tank was abandoned by its crew near the village of Belaya Kamenka where Ukrainian armored units made an attempt to break through the independence fighters’ positions but, facing strong resistance, were forced to fall back.

Five instances of the ceasefire violation have been reported in the past two days as Ukrainian troops have shelled settlements in Donetsk People’s Republic.

According to the DPR defense ministry, the settlements of Spartak, Staromikhailovka, Alexandrovka and the vicinity of the Donetsk airport came under shelling.

Cache With US-Made Weapons Found at Lugansk Airport – Official

According to the statement made by the representatives of the Lugansk People’s Republic (LPR), workers found a cache with arms, including US-made weapons, while clearing debris at the Lugansk airport.

LUHANSK (Sputnik) — Workers found a storage area with ammunition, small and heavy arms, including US-made weapons, while clearing debris at an airport in Lugansk People’s Republic (LPR), the head of an investigation department for the LPR prosecutor general’s office said Wednesday.

“While piling the rubble at the Lugansk airport, workers found a cache with ammunition, small arms and heavy weapons, including US-made,” Leonid Tkachenko said at a briefing, as quoted by the Lugansk Information Center news portal.

According to Tkachenko, some of the weapons had US Department of Defense markings, including what were believed to be Stinger surface-to-air missiles.

Tkachenko said the finding proved that US lethal weapons had been previously delivered to Ukraine, as LPR fighters gained control over the airport in Lugansk in September 2014.

The official said a video record of the finding would be made available to representatives of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe.

Ukrainian authorities have repeatedly called for the West to supply lethal weapons to help government forces fight independence supporters in the southeast of the country.

The United States is officially providing non-lethal aid to Ukraine. Some 300 US instructors are training the troops of the country’s National Guard.

Oligarch-Financed part of Ukraine Army Acquired US Weapons – Lawmaker

US Congressman Dana Rohrabacher said that US defensive weapons may become part of the arsenal of an oligarch-sponsored part of the Ukrainian army if Washington decides to provide military assistance to Ukraine.

WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — US defensive weapons may become part of the arsenal of an oligarch-sponsored part of the Ukrainian army if Washington decides to provide military assistance to Ukraine, US Congressman Dana Rohrabacher said.

“Do we see any of these weapons becoming part of the arsenal of that part of the Ukrainian army, which I believe the third of the Ukrainian army now that is in conflict, that is financed by the oligarch, a private citizen who happens to be a multi billionaire,” Rohrabacher asked US Assistance Secretary of State Victoria Nuland at a hearing in US Congress on Wednesday.

Rohrabacher query came as many members of US Congress are advocating that the United States provide defensive weapons to Ukraine.

The United States has been assisting Ukraine with economic and non-lethal military support since the Kiev government began a military operation against independence supporters in Ukraine’s eastern regions of Donetsk and Luhansk last April.

In December, US Congress authorized the allocation of $350 million to arm the Kiev government. However, US President Barack Obama has not enacted the legislation.

While members of the Obama administration and US Congress have stated their support to arm Ukraine, US NATO allies Germany, France, Spain and Italy have opposed the measure.

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