Poroshenko announced the start of operations of the combined forces in the Donbass

CC BY 4.0 / presidential Administration / the President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko has signed the decree about the change of format operation in the Donbass. 30 APR 2018Poroshenko announced the start of operations of the combined forces in the DonbassCC BY 4.0 / administration of the President of Ukraine /

The President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko on Monday signed a decree on completion of the antiterrorist operation in Donbass, which lasted more than four years. Instead, the region began operation of the United forces of Ukraine.

Changing the format of the military operation in the East of Ukraine, Kiev, legalized the use of armed force in resolving the conflict in the region in peacetime. The management units of the security forces involved in the Donbass, now passes from the security Service of Ukraine (SBU) to the Ukrainian military.

Interviewees RIA Novosti experts believe that the change in the situation in the region after the change of format operation should not be expected. According to political analysts, to establish peace in the region it is necessary to introduce a UN peacekeeping mission. The experts say the strengthening of the role of the President in managing the conflict after the change of format operation.

Presidential decision

The change-over operation was previously Poroshenko announced on April 30, before that there was the necessary preparatory work. On Monday, as expected, the President announced the signing of the decree.

«Today, April 30, the format of the ATO has changed the operation of the joint forces. The leadership of the forces and means of Ukraine’s Armed forces to rely on the commander of the joint forces. Thus ended the regime of anti-terrorist operation began in April 2014,» wrote Poroshenko in Facebook.

In a video posted Monday on the website of Poroshenko, it is clear that he signed a decree on completion of mode «anti-terrorist operation» in the Donbass. He also signed a decree on the beginning of the operation the combined forces of Ukraine 14:00 GMT on 30 April 2018.

Poroshenko also said that the counterterrorist operation regime can enter at any time when there is an anti-terrorist threat in the liberated territories.

Format change

Acting President of Ukraine Oleksandr Turchynov on 14 April 2014, issued a decree on the beginning of the ATO in Eastern Ukraine. This decision was a response to education in the Donbass self-proclaimed republics of Donetsk and Lugansk, which Kiev declared terrorist organizations.

The management of the operation was entrusted to the SBU, whose authority, according to Ukrainian laws, is to fight against terrorism. However, apart from special services from the very beginning involved the national guard and the regular army.

Later the Kiev authorities blamed the events in Donbas on Russia. Moscow, for its part, has repeatedly stated that it is not a party to domestic conflict and not involved in the events in the South-East, is interested in Ukraine overcame political and economic crisis.

During 2014-2017 in Ukraine in the public sphere has been discussed a question of introduction of martial law in the Donbas, in which the leading role in the operation would be moved to the army. However, the government did not follow this step.

Officials assured that the Declaration of martial law will only complicate life to Ukraine.

First, the country’s leadership explained its position that the imposition of martial law would have made impossible the holding of early presidential elections and the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine in 2014. Later known as the arguments that such a decision would deprive Kiev’s financial support of the IMF, is badly needed in the context of an acute economic and financial crisis, and would also make it impossible to carry out reforms in the country.

Poroshenko in late 2017 proposed an alternative mechanism is the use of the army in the East of Ukraine without a Declaration of martial law, introduced for consideration of Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine a draft law on the reintegration of Donbass, which was adopted at the beginning of this year.

The bill, on the one hand, gives the President the right in time of peace to use the army in the Donbass for the «implementation of measures to ensure the country’s sovereignty», and on the other hand, calls Russia «aggressor state», as Kiev believes that Russia intervenes in the Affairs of Ukraine is a party to the conflict in the Donbass, not controlled Kiev territory of Donbass are «occupied».

Thus, Kiev has legitimized the use of armed forces in the East without a Declaration of war.

The new head

Starting in 2014, the leadership of the military operation of Ukrainian forces in the Donbass was in the hands of the operational headquarters, headed by the head of the Antiterrorist center at the security Service of Ukraine.

Starting in 2015, till today this office is held by General-Colonel Vitaly Malikov, Deputy head of the SBU.

Under the new rules, the management of the operation passed into the hands of the joint operations headquarters headed by the commander of the United forces. Poroshenko on March 16 he was appointed to the position of Deputy chief of the General staff of the Armed forces of Ukraine the General-Lieutenant Sergey Nueva.

New will control not only the Armed forces of Ukraine, the Donbas, but also the divisions of the SBU, police, national guard and border guards.

In announcing the appointment of commander joint forces, Poroshenko said that the operation that Kiev spends in the Donbass in the spring of 2014 with the aim of stabilizing the situation in the region, carried out their tasks. «Of course, anti-terrorist operation has played a crucial role in the first stage of aggression. Moreover, the format of the antiterrorist operation was released more than two-thirds of the occupied Donbass», — said the President.

He stated that has set the new commander of the task to strengthen the armed forces so «that they were not only defenses, but also able to liberate the occupied territories».

The offensive is not planned

According to the head of the Ukrainian General staff Viktor Muzhenko, the change of format operation in Donbass, the government recognizes that the operation in the East of Ukraine «went beyond anti-terrorism frame». According to him, the transition to operations of the combined forces in the first place means centralization of control that will allow the Ukrainian military to respond more quickly to the challenges that will arise.

Poroshenko announced the start of operations of the combined forces in the Donbass© RIA Novosti / Valery Melnikova in Photobacterium did not rule out pinpoint military operations in the Donbass

At the same time, the defense Ministry denied allegations of the breakaway republics that after the format change operation Kiev is going to start a large-scale offensive in the Donbas. «The enemy continues to intimidate the local population false information about the holding forces of anti-terrorist operations from April 30 this year, large-scale offensive action and the activities of the Ukrainian sabotage-reconnaissance groups», — said earlier the official representative of the Ministry of defense of Ukraine Dmitry Gutsulyak.

Before that Poroshenko also said that Ukrainian forces should be prepared to «free Donbass», however, after the format change operation of the priority remains a political and diplomatic solution to the conflict.

In addition, the Ministry of defence of Ukraine declared that don’t plan in the first phase of the operation joint forces to increase the number of Ukrainian security forces, but in the future it may change depending on the situation.

Change in the situation will not

Director of the Ukrainian Institute of policy analysis and management Ruslan Bortnik believes that the formal completion of the antiterrorist operation and the change in practice will mean the redistribution of powers among the security forces.

Poroshenko announced the start of operations of the combined forces in the Donbass© RIA Novosti / Michael Palinketi in photobank»True for us»: Poroshenko promised the Ukrainians win the war in the Donbass

«This decision could very seriously change the situation in the region. To change the management structure of the conflict. In practice, this would mean a major redistribution of powers among the security forces in the conflict zone. In particular, there may be a serious reformatting of legal and illegal economic and social flows,» — said Bortnik RIA Novosti.

According to him, among other things, can change the order of crossing the demarcation line for citizens. The expert also believes that changing the format of the operation could lead to a «redistribution» of contraband business, which, according to him, flourished during the years of conflict along the line of demarcation.

Bortnik believes that after the change of the operation situation in the Donbass will become less public. In his opinion, after the change of the operation managing the conflict will be in the «direct manual control of the President.» The Bortnik said that while it is difficult to predict, will have a format change to the aggravation of the situation or at peace. «But at the first stage after the change of format to expect obvious change is not necessary», — he added.

The head of the Ukrainian analytical center «Third sector» Andrei Zolotarev is convinced that no change in the situation in the Donbas should not be expected.

Poroshenko announced the start of operations of the combined forces in the Donbass© RIA Novosti / Sergey Againpretty in fotobank DNR called the change of format operation in Donbass a military solution to the conflict

«Fundamentally the situation can change is that the deployment of peacekeepers and the separation of the parties, to the distance between opposing sides was twenty miles. And so, in fact, nothing will change. That is neither peace nor war <…> the name Change is tied to the election campaign. The President promised to end the anti-terrorist operation, it completes», — said Zolotarev RIA Novosti.

Ukrainian political analyst Eugene Lesyk also convinced that the change of format operation will not have any impact conflict.

«Most likely, the conflict will continue to smolder. Periodically escalating regularly to negotiate a truce. The situation can change only the UN peacekeepers,» said Lesyk.