Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council (NSDC) of Ukraine Alexander Turchinov announced the Ukrainian forces’ progress in Donbass. The DPR, in turn, called such statements "nonsense."
In an interview with The Public Television (Gromadskoye TV), Turchinov said that since 2016, the AFU "has not given up a single meter of their land." He also said that in some areas the Ukrainian forces had advanced to "ten or more kilometres" and "improved their positions."
According to Turchinov, in the territory of Donbass "currently there are no forces that could shift the existing demarcation line."
"Feat", which never happened
"This is nonsense, we have never had such kilometres of ‘grey zones’ anywhere. If they think so, they had to have entered our territory. They did not enter our territory anywhere," the Operational Command of the Donetsk People's Republic reported.
The DPR defense agency noted that the Ukrainian forces had occupied areas in the "grey zone", which were "nowhere near the most advantageous ones."
"Statements on advancement is a demonstration of allegedly heroic deeds, which never took place," the defense official concluded.
Poroshenko’s last chance
Turchinov's words illustrate the general position of Kiev on the Minsk agreements, said Vyacheslav Smirnov, director of the Research Institute for Political Sociology. According to him, the Ukrainian side takes the Donbass Agreement "very differently."
"It is not mutual actions contributing to normalization, starting with amnesty, that the put first, but seizure of control over the border with Russia. Obviously, hoping that after that all other paragraphs of the agreements can be forgotten," the expert said on Sputnik radio.
At the same time, as the presidential elections approach, Kiev will be increasingly inclined to a forceful resolution of the conflict in Donbass, Smirnov adds.
"Politically, Poroshenko has a chance to preserve the power only the case of an offensive on Donbass, and if hostilities begin, they will be tougher than two years ago," the political expert said.
If the Ukrainian president does not show determination, his entourage will surrender him, Smirnov suggests.
DONi News Agency