Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov finally admitted Russia is helping the pro-Russians in east Ukraine. This revelation comes to light while Interfax-Ukraine reports three Russian tanks entered Ukraine near Snizhne and gunmen captured a bus full of children in the city.
Lavrov only said Russia sends humanitarian aid, but did not specify the items that are being sent over. But Igor Girkin, one of the leaders in the Donbas People’s Militia in east Ukraine, said it includes military equipment.
“Humanitarian aid from Russia has finally reached Slovyansk yesterday,” Girkin wrote on social media. “Our special thanks for bulletproof helmets (see photo, green, brand new, gleaming) of a high degree of protection. This is exactly what our guys are missing when they crawl in the trenches under a sniper fire.”
On Wednesday night, Ukrainian troops managed to stop three Russian tanks in Snizhne, which is near the city of Donetsk.
“Tonight, three T-72 tanks crossed Ukraine’s state border from Russia. One tank is in the town of Snizhne. Two other tanks moved out of the town. In the vicinity of Snizhne these tanks were intercepted by Ukrainian troops. The fight is ongoing. There are reports that a Russian T-72 was hit,” said Interior Minister Arsen Avakov.
Dmytro Tymchuk, head of the Information Resistance group, confirmed Avakov’s statement.
“In Ukraine, these tanks were decommissioned from the arsenal of the Armed Forces. However, they are in service with the Russian army. There is also evidence that APCs available to militants in Snizhne were previously captured by Russian soldiers in Crimea at the military units of Ukrainian coastal defense troops,” Tymchuk wrote on his Facebook page.
On May 25, the day of the presidential election, it was revealed by local journalists that Chechens from Russia were in Donetsk. These men told Courtney Weaver at Financial Times their leader Ramzan Kadyrov, who is very friendly with Russian President Vladimir Putin, sent them to Ukraine. Kadyrov denies the allegation.
A bus full of children from Snizhne headed to Dnipropetrovsk was captured by gunmen and transferred to the Dolzhansky checkpoint in Luhansk. The new website of Donetsk Regional State Administration said the bus is at the border. They said:
The location of a group of children who were intercepted today by armed men on the outskirts of Snizhne has been established. According to the data available now to the family and youth department of the regional state administration, the bus with the children from Snizhne proceeded to Krasny Luch in Luhansk region, where it headed to the Dolzhansky checkpoint. The children are now on the border.
No one outside of Luhansk knows exactly where the bus is or if the pro-Russians want to transport the children to Russia. The people on the bus do not have the proper papers to enter Russia.