Kiev government, after conflicting reports, and after sightings of what appeared to be six of the armored personnel carriers from Kiev in the hands of pro-Russian militias in the East Ukrainian town of Slovyansk, ( which was Kiev's first target for recapture ); Kiev now admits that pro-Russian militiamen have taken from the Kiev paratrooper forces, six of the armored cars sent to support the paratroopers.
Kiev remained silent on the question of the drivers switching sides, or the vehicles being taken by force.
Kiev did say the vehicles were initially blocked, and stopped, by civilian pro-Russian protestors from another town, Kramatorsk, the armored personnel carries were traveling through, after which pro-Russian militia were able to take control of them.
The report from Kiev came hours after news media showed the captured vehicles on display by the pro-Russian militia in Slovyansk, the first town Kiev targeted for re-capture from pro-Russian militias.
More that two days after the ultimatum for surrender or "be destroyed" by Kiev expired, no representatives of the Kiev government have arrived to accept the surrender of Slovyansk, nor have any forces loyal to Kiev arrived to "destroy the pro-Russian militias".
http://www.kyivpost.com/content/ukraine/insurgents-in-kramatorsk-in-armored-personnel-carriers-fly-russian-flag-live-update-343745.htmlKyiv Post, a pro-Kiev government newspaper in Kiev, Wednesday, April 16th, 2014 wrote:
( Kiev government ) Defense Ministry confirms pro-Russian separatists have captured Ukrainian armored vehicles
4:28 p.m. ( local Kiev time ) -- The Ukrainian Defense Ministry has confirmed that "Russian saboteurs" have captured six Ukrainian armed vehicles in the eastern Ukrainian city of Kramatorsk.
The ministry says that local residents of Kramatorsk blocked the armored vehicles on the morning of April 16. "As a result of the blocking, extremists seized the vehicles and the column [of armored vehicles] headed towards Sloviansk," said the Defense Ministry's statement.
The vehicles are currently in Sloviansk. The ministry says that the men controlling them are "not related to the Armed Forces of Ukraine."
Whether Ukrainian troops initially driving the armored vehicles switched sides and joined the pro-Russian separatists remains unclear.
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/04/17/world/europe/ukraine-crisis.htmlNew York Times Newspaper, Wednesday, April 16th, 2014 wrote:
Tsenzor.net, a Ukrainian news website, reported that militants seized the vehicles in a neighboring town, Kramatorsk, where Ukrainian paratroopers had landed Tuesday to secure an airfield, in what was intended to be a show of force.
The Ukrainian general who commanded the military operation, Vasily Krutov, stood near armored personnel carriers outside the town and warned loudly that gunmen who did not surrender their weapons would be “destroyed.”