Yesterday’s events in Mariupol showed that the security forces are finally on the right track towards an adequate reaction to events.Security forces commanders involved in the ATO demonstrate the ability to make quick decisions and give appropriate orders in tactical situations.The ATO personnel have [now] overcome the psychological barrier towards the use of weapons in cases of armed confrontation with terrorists (in the interests of law enforcement agencies, we haven’t mentioned this problem before, although it remained one of the most glaring issues during the ATO).
It is worthwhile to separately acknowledge the effectiveness of the National Guard and Interior Troops (and the special ops units within the Interior Troops in particular).As of today, this is the only division whose performance has been nearly unquestionable.
We were also impressed by the effectiveness of the volunteer units (in this case, the territorial defense battalion “Dnipro,” formed by volunteers from Dnipropetrovsk Oblast, which arrived in Mariupol on May 8th). The morale of volunteers rose to the occasion. The professionalism of their commanders is also worth noting since they managed to quickly navigate the situation and organize the collaboration between the units.
Local law enforcement officers remain the weakest link among the forces engaged in the confrontations with terrorists. Sabotage and betrayal in their ranks are rampant. This is one of the most pressing problems, with no obvious solution available at the moment.
The situation on Ukraine’s Russian border remains very difficult. To effectively counteract the penetration of the Russian subversive groups and weapons on the territory of Ukraine, according to our data, the State Border Service of Ukraine is in dire need of additional manpower, equipment and effective support from other enforcement departments in Ukraine. The situation at the state border in Luhansk and Donetsk Oblasts is particularly deplorable in this respect.
Regarding terrorist manpower
Over the last two weeks at minimum, we have observed widespread replacements among the terrorist formations in the East, with the mercenaries arriving from Russia replacing the Spetsnaz troops of the GRU of the RF General Staff. These are primarily the military reservists who served in the Russian Spetsnaz and those with combat experience (in the Caucasus in particular).
Russian authorities recruit and prepare these professionally trained mercenaries almost entirely on Russian territory. According to Information Resistance data, even in the Khabarovsk Krai of Russia, over the last three weeks, local military enlistment offices have called on military reservists, who previously served in the GRU Spetsnaz, and offered them good compensation to participate in terrorist activities in Ukraine. Such [recruitment] work is most actively conducted in the Southern Federal District of Russia.
Simultaneously, an effective transfer of weapons from Russia to the terrorist groups [located] in Donbas is currently underway.
The halting of manufacturing at [local] enterprises and the sharp rise in unemployment in Donbas are especially dangerous in light of the destabilization of the situation. For many local residents, participation in terrorist actions, for a relatively high salary for the region (from USD $100 per day), is a perfectly acceptable means of earning a living.
Effective Russian propaganda (the inflation of the mythical threat of the “Right Sector,” the imposition of stereotypes of Ukraine as a “Banderite” and “Fascist” state, stories about the “illegitimacy” of the current Ukrainian authorities, discreditation of Ukrainian special forces and the ATO as a “bloody suppression of the people’s uprising,” etc.) is also a major factor in the destabilization of the region. We have observed a notable increase in the effectiveness of such false images used by Russian propaganda after the tragic events in Odesa on May 2nd.
As we pointed out above, the examination of the situation in the region as a whole (and especially in Donetsk) has shown that there are serious questions [that need to be addressed] by the local police. Unfortunately, local law enforcement officers, for the most part, are saboteurs and traitors living at the expense of the people whose interests they have openly betrayed.
These “law enforcement officers” are a major resource for extremist forces. By continuing to serve in the Interior Ministry of Ukraine, these traitors remain a huge threat to the country’s interests. However, in the event of mass layoffs, we expect an instant replenishment of terrorist groups with these traitors–where they will continue their anti-Ukrainian activities, but at Moscow’s expense.
Translated by Voices of Ukraine