Donetsk in mourning
On Friday 31 August 2018 president of the DNR Alexander Zakharchenko was murdered in a bomb attack.
A terrible tragedy for the republic. But this tragedy will not bring the republic on its knees, it will only make it stronger.
What do we know so far
President Zakharchenko and one of his bodyguards died in Café Separ on Pushkin Boulevard in Central Donetsk at 17:30 by a bomb attack.
The minister of finance Alexander Timofeev was severely injured but now conscious. According to the latest statements he was not able to talk, but he could write and communicate by this way.
The total of people injured varies from source between 11 and 12 people, 5 or 6 people are still receiving treatment. According to some messages is among one of the other injured victims the female journalist from Oplot TV Natalia Volkova, she is now treaded in the burn center according to the message.
Rumors on social media of 5 people dead including a child are not true according to officials.
The bomb was supposedly disguised as a lamp and detonated from outside the building.
Several people have been arrested and according to officials they have 2 people in custody that have confessed that they acted in behalf of the SBU (Ukrainian security service).
According to the news channel Sputnik:
The assassination of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic’s (DPR) leader, Alexander Zakharchenko, was organized by the Ukrainian Special Operations Forces, Zakharchenko's adviser Alexander Kazakov told Sputnik.
"We have already revealed the initiator — that is the Special Operations Forces. We are likely to name the head of the [assault] group and responsible officer of this structure in the near future," Kazakov said.
He pointed out that several suspects had been detained and already made confessions.
I have not found a detailed statement from official channels like this yet. If someone have more information please let me know.
The Russian Investigative Committee launched a criminal case on charges of international terrorism following Friday’s blast in Donetsk that killed Alexander Zakharchenko.
This statement was made by Russian Investigative Committee spokesperson Svetlana Petrenko.
The spokesperson added that investigative procedures will be carried out in line with norms of the Russian and international law. She also said that the Russian Investigative Committee was ready to assist Donetsk law-enforcement agencies in their investigation.
"Based on its experience of international investigation of terror attacks, the Investigative Committee of Russia is ready to render all possible assistance to law-enforcement agencies of the Donetsk People’s Republic," Petrenko said.
On Tass news agency we also find the statement made by President Putin:
"Alexander Vladimirovich was a truly people’s leader, a brave and strong-willed person, a patriot of Donbass. In this difficult time for his republic he rose to defend it, shouldering huge personal responsibility, and steered the course for people," the president’s message reads.
Putin added that he expects the organizers and perpetrators of that crime to get the punishment they deserve.
"Alexander Zakharchenko’s despicable murder shows once again that those who chose the path of terror, violence and intimidation do not want to seek a peaceful, political solution to the conflict, do not want to conduct a real dialogue with people in southeastern [Ukraine]. Instead, they bank on destabilizing the situation and bring the people of Donbass to their knees, but they will not be able to do that," the president’s message runs.
The president offered his condolences to Zakharchenko’s relatives and friends and all residents of the Donbass region. "Russia will always stand by you," he concluded.
Situation on the ground
In the evening and the next morning the city Donetsk as well as the entire Donetsk People`s republic`s borders where in lockdown.
Saturday afernoon the borders where reopend, but the inspections are tightend.
The state of emergency is pronounced. The evening clock that was recently moved to 01:00 is set back at 23:00.
There are 3 day`s of mourning pronounced. Schools are also closed until 4 September.
There were some provocations this night but non very seriously is reported for so far.
However there are serious expectations of a major provocation.
The operational command of the Republic Eduard Basurin made the following statement:
The Ukrainian army began preparations for the offensive in Donbass. This was announced today by Deputy commander of the operational command of the Republic Eduard Basurin.
Our intelligence revealed the deployment of a strike group of Ukrainian occupiers in the Mariupol direction under the cover of the exercises "Storm-2018". We record the tightening of heavy equipment and artillery weapons on the border of the occupied Donetsk region in the area of the locality of Rozovka. The personnel of the units receives ammunition and equipment, as well as carries out maintenance of equipment before the combat mission
- he noted.
In addition, according to Basurin, units of the 56th infantry and 406 artillery brigade arrived in the area of Urzuf.
Also continue to record strong Aero investigation of the Ukrainian unmanned vehicles that continue to destroy our air defense units. Thanks to the data obtained from the previously shot down UAVs, confirmed the facts of accumulation of equipment and preparation of Ukraine for the offensive.
Our sources in the headquarters of OOS and if it's "East" referred to on 14 September as a possible date of onset
— said the Deputy commander.
He added that all units of the DPR armed forces are brought to the highest degree of combat readiness and are ready for any development of the situation, "up to the transition to a counterattack in case of an attack from the enemy side.
The acting new president
Acting head of the DPR is now the first Deputy Chairman of the Council of Ministers of the DPR Dmitry Trapeznikov.
Statement made by the acting head of the Donetsk people's Republic Dmitry Trapeznikov
Donetsk people's Republic suffered an irreparable loss – as a result of a terrorist attack by the Ukrainian special services killed the Head of our state Alexander Zakharchenko. This is a heavy blow for the whole country. But during the years of independence of the Donetsk people's Republic, during the years of our struggle for freedom and the right to self-determination under the leadership of our leader, we were able to create a reliable state system, a mechanism that is designed and able to work in the most difficult circumstances.
Taking office as acting Head of the Donetsk people's Republic, I personally guarantee – there will be no failures. All public services will operate normally. All social guarantees – pensions, social benefits, benefits and so on – will be implemented in the same amounts. At the same time, all the planned increases in social and other payments will certainly be implemented.
I personally guarantee that every promise of Alexander Zakharchenko to the people of Donetsk people's Republic will be fulfilled. All existing programs to improve the quality of life of the population will be continued.
Large-scale programs of restarting the Donbass industry and restoring the economic potential of our country will also be continued. We will not step back from the chosen course, as if the enemy did not want to intimidate us and lead us astray.
Our foreign policy – integration with the Russian Federation with the prospect of joining the greater Russia-also remains unchanged. This course has already been supported by friends of the Republic from different countries, who delivered messages in response to the terrorist attack of the Ukrainian special services.
Friends, we are not left alone in front of the enemy. We are United, which means we will win!".
Acting Head of the Donetsk people's Republic Dmitry Trapeznikov
A little more about Dmitry Trapeznikov
Dmitry Viktorovich Trapeznikov was born on 12 April 1981 in the city of Krasnodar.
In 1982, together with his family he moved to the city of Donetsk.
He received his first higher education with honors at the Donetsk state Academy of construction and architecture in 2004. He mastered the specialty "Industrial and civil construction".
In addition, he has two higher educations: Manager-economist and lawyer.
Currently, he continues training at the Donetsk Academy of management and public service under the head of the Donetsk people's Republic in the specialty "Public service in the field of public administration".
Education in higher educational institutions of Donbass were successfully combined with work.
From 2001 to 2005, he worked as a Manager of a football club "Shakhtar".
After that, he held senior positions in large business structures, including LLC "Baustandart", LLC "Billiardai", charity Fund "Blagoschvit" and others.
From 2010 to 2012 he worked as Deputy head of the district Council of Petrovsky district of Donetsk. Since 2012 and up to the outbreak of hostilities in the Donbass headed the Trading house "Koopvneshtorg".
In February 2014 resigned from the post of General Director of the Trading house "Koopvneshtorg" and returned to the city of Donetsk. He served in the militia.
In September 2014, he was appointed head of the interim administration of telmanov district of Donetsk people's Republic. From December 2014 to the present time he held various senior positions in the Administration Of the head of the Donetsk people's Republic.
In April 2016, he was also appointed acting Deputy Chairman of the Council of Ministers of the Donetsk people's Republic.
He has a number of awards, diplomas and thanks received both before the start of hostilities in the Donbass, and in the public service in the Donetsk people's Republic.
In 2016, and after and in 2017 for special outstanding services to the Donetsk people's Republic and its people in the state building, courage and bravery, he was awarded one of the highest awards of the DPR – the Order of the Republic.
The republic will go on
The next view weeks will tell how the situation will evolve, for now, it`s hard to tell.
But the republic is in good hands. The government and the driving forces of the republic are so much more than just the president.
Although it is a hard blow, people will go on, the republic will go on.
The people that will suffer the most are his wife and his four children. Our thoughts are with them in this hard time.
Alexander Vladimirovich Zakharchenko,
may you rest in peace.