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Ukraine reveals Russian-made weapons, explosives found in occupied Donbas

Russian contactless explosive device NVU-P Okhota discovered by SBU in the war zone in the east of Ukraine. Photo: Security Service of Ukraine
The Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) has reported on its latest finds of the weapons and munitions supplied from Russia to the warzone in the east-Ukrainian Donbas region. Among the documented types of weapons are not just Soviet-designed landmines, but also exclusively Russian-made explosive devices and grenade launchers, not seen before in the Donbas.

The SBU reports that it has established new facts of supplying weapons and ammunition from Russia to the militants of the so-called LDNR (Luhansk and Donetsk “people’s republics” – regional occupation administrations, – Ed).

SBU operative inspecting a crater left behind by an explosion in the Donbas war zone. Photo: Security Service of Ukraine

Among the weapons seized by the security agency, SBU lists:

  • Russian rocket-propelled flamethrowers Shmel, first spotted in the Donbas back in 2014 and still actively used by the Russian-hybrid forces;
  • the Russain-made contactless explosive device NVU-P Okhota, first documented in the Donbas in 2020;
  • unnamed “anti-personnel mines banned by the 1997 Ottawa Convention” (presumably the Soviet-designed remotely laid POM-2 mentioned further on in the report and shown in one of the report’s images without a caption).

SBU says that according to its investigators, in February 2021, a local resident of frontline Khutir Vilnyi, (Sievierodonetsk Raion, Luhansk Oblast) was killed “due to the use of such weapons by militants” as “he was hit by a POM-2 anti-personnel fragmentation mine in his own backyard.”

POM-2 Russian landmine in the Donbas
Soviet-designed antipersonnel landmine POM-2, revealed by SBU in the war zone of Luhansk Oblast. Mines of this type are laid exclusively remotely, sing special launchers or aerial vehicles to disperse them. Photo: Security Service of Ukraine

Additionally, the Agency says that it has documented the facts of the usage of modern Russian weapons against Ukrainian troops in the east of Ukraine.

One such weapon is the hand-held reusable multi-caliber multifunctional grenade launcher RPG-32 Barkas, which Ukraine had never possessed.

The Russian-designed contactless explosive device NVU-P Okhota activates while recording the movement of a person through its seismic sensors installed on the ground. photo: Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, 2020.

Plus, SBU officers have reportedly discovered fragments of the Russian-made Zanos rocket-propelled grenade in Luhansk Oblast, another piece of Russian weaponry never used by Ukraine or seen in the Donbas before. This weapon was used to attack Ukrainian troops near the front-line city of Popasna, according to SBU.

RPG-32 Barkas
The tail part of the Russian multipurpose rocket-propelled grenade RMG Zanos. Photo: Security Service of Ukraine

The security agency says that its investigators have attached the seized samples of Russian weaponry as evidence to the files of criminal proceedings initiated under Article 258.1 (terrorist act) and Article 438.1 (violation of laws and customs of war) of Ukraine’s Criminal Code.

“The investigation is underway to establish and document new facts of illegal activity,” the SBU report reads. and the Agency says that the decision has been now under consideration to “the collected evidence to international courts to bring to justice those involved in war crimes against Ukraine.”

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