Russia continues to supply arms and militants to Eastern Ukraine, but Ukrainian forces are closing off the border, said the Secretary of the National Security Council Andriy Parubiy at a press briefing, June 16, reports Ukrainska Pravda.
“In reality, the Russian military invasion is continuing, and we are dealing with Russian invaders. The Russian army is arming the militants and deploying them in great numbers to the East of our country,” he said.
Parubiy contested Putin’s declaration on the withdrawal of his troops from the border with Ukraine. “Just within the last day, despite the statements of President Putin, we have evidence that the armed forces of the Russian Federation have deployed several units of the 76th Pskov Airborne Assault Division to certain locations at the Ukrainian border ” Parubiy said.
According to his data, some 150 paratroopers from this brigade, along with their equipment, have been transferred by plane to the Millerovo station, which is 20 kilometers from the Ukrainian border. Parubiy said there is information that Russia plans to deploy troops from the task force battalion of Russia’s Northern Fleet to the Ukrainian border.
“The sizable armed forces of the Russian Federation near the Ukrainian border include 16,000 troops, as well as up to 22,000 troops in Crimea and up to 3,500 in Transnistria,” Parubiy said.
Parubiy believes all these military troops are prepared for aggressive action against Ukraine. However, he said that Ukraine’s military and border guards in recent days were able to stop 7 convoys of militants and to retake control over large swathes of the Ukrainian border through military action.
“Today we were able to fight our way up to the Biryukove station (from the south). From the north, along the border from Horodyshche, where our units are located, they moved to the Novokyyivka station. This way we are locking up the line of containment,” Parubiy said.
Additionally, Parubiy said there are 15,000-20,000 militants in the Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts. Half of them are from Russia — Chechens from the Caucasus and Russian special forces. The other half are local, but a number of them have been mobilized by force by the terrorists from the civilian population, he said, as reported by dt.ua.
According to Parubiy, the enemy has considerable strength. Many terrorists have combat experience and the most advanced weapons — weapons that the Ukrainian Armed Forces simply do not have, he said.
Translation: Anna Mostovych