Donetsk, Mar 17 - DAN. Russian coalition fighters have killed more than 60 Ukrainian gunmen and suppressed 16 fire positions over the past 24 hours, Donetsk People’s Republic People’s Militia deputy commander Eduard Basurin said on Thursday.

“Over the past 24 hours, more than 60 invaders, a tank, two infantry fighting vehicles and 16 enemy fire emplacements have been destroyed in joint operations,” Basurin said adding that the coalition forces had also taken five enemy IFVs and a tank as trophies.

After tensions increased dramatically on the contact line on February 17, the Donbass Republics leaders asked the Russian president for assistance. On February 24, President Vladimir Putin announced a special military operation aimed at demilitarization and denazification of Ukraine. On the same day, the DPR and LPR militias launched a liberation movement supported by Russian armed forces.*jk