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The OSCE Special Monitoring Mission (SMM) in Donbas continues to record the deployment of heavy weapons by the Russian occupying forces outside their designated storage sites.

In particular, 15 multiple launch rocket systems (BM21 Grad, 122mm) were spotted near Khrustalnyi (formerly Krasnyi Luch, 56km south-west of Luhansk) on April 19, the Joint Center for Control and Coordination (JCCC) of the ceasefire in Donbas reported on the Joint Forces Operation's Facebook page with reference to the OSCE SMM's daily report 90/2021 of April 20, 2021.

On the same day, seven multiple launch rocket systems (BM21 Grad, 122mm), eight self-propelled howitzers (2S1 Gvozdika, 122mm), 10 towed howitzers (five 2A65 Msta-B, 152mm and five D-30 Lyagushka, 122mm), and 13 tanks (seven T-72 and six T-64) were recorded at the airfield near Peremozhne (19km south of Luhansk) outside the storage sites.

Read alsoFull-scale invasion of Russian troops into Ukraine unlikely – analystsIn addition, using UAVs, the OSCE SMM patrols continue to record the previously equipped and new minefields of the Russian armed formations in occupied Donbas.

On April 13, about 450m south of Oleksandrivka (non-government-controlled, 20km southwest of Donetsk), an SMM mini-UAV again spotted four probable mine hazard sings along a local road and in a field about 500m south-south-west, 80 anti-tank mines stretching southwards about 50m south of highway H-15 between Marinka (government-controlled, 23km south-west of Donetsk) and Kreminets (non-government-controlled, 16km south-west of Donetsk), assessed as belonging to the armed formations.

On the same day, about 1.7km south-west of Olenivka, an SMM mini-UAV spotted for the first time 51 anti-tank mines in a field between the railway tracks, 56 anti-tank mines about 100m south-west in a field adjacent to these tracks, and 42 anti-tank mines about 450m east south-east from this location, all assessed as not recently laid and belonging to the armed formations.

Read alsoRussian military build-up along Ukraine border bigger than 2014 – Pentagon"Such actions of the Russian Federation's armed formations destabilize the situation along the entire contact line and serve as the basis for fabricating provocations to discredit the Armed Forces of Ukraine in the eyes of the local population," the Ukrainian side to the JCCC stressed.