Crisis Looms As Fighting in
Eastern Ukraine Intensifies
WASHINGTON, D.C.  February 1, 2017
FROM:  Mark B. Levin, CEO

 Daniel Rubin, Chairman

 Alexander Smukler, President

As you may have read, fighting in Eastern Ukraine has increased significantly in recent days.

On Friday, January 28, combined Russian-separatist forces launched an assault against Ukrainian positions in and around Avdiivka, approximately 13 miles north of the city of Donetsk. At least 10 people have been killed, and dozens wounded. Damage from the fighting has left 17,000 people without water, electricity, or heat, during a cold snap with temperatures well below freezing.

The Associated Press reported today that shelling had subsided late Wednesday morning, and that the sides may have agreed to a cease-fire to restore electricity and water supplies.

NCSEJ and its Kyiv representative have been in contact with Jewish community leaders in the region. They shared the following report with us:

A few Jews lived in Avdiivka before the 2014 conflict began, and they have all since emigrated to Israel.

Water supplies have been cut off in the city of Donetsk, and mortars are exploding less than a quarter of a mile from the city’s center.

Pro-Russian separatists have placed mortars and other artillery in residential areas. However, Jews who have remained in Donetsk still plan to remain.

NCSEJ will continue to follow the situation, and will provide updates as needed.


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Founded in 1971, NCSEJ represents the organized American Jewish community in monitoring and advocating on behalf of the estimated 1.5 million Jews in Eastern Europe and Eurasia, including the 15 successor states of the former Soviet Union.