Kiev Unaware of Ukrainian Air Force Striking City in Ceasefire Zone
MOSCOW, July 22 (RIA Novosti) - The Ukrainian National Security and Defense Council neither confirms, nor denies the reports of a Ukrainian Air Force jet striking a city located in eastern Ukraine's ceasefire zone.
"I don't know exactly, but if that is within 30 kilometers from the Boeing crash site, then I have to say that the 40-kilometer ceasefire zone has been defined [zone around the site of the downed Malaysia Airlines passenger jet]," Ukrainian Security Council spokesman Andriy Lysenko said Tuesday at a press briefing. "That is in the 20-kilometer radius. We can calculate," he added.
A RIA Novosti correspondent reported earlier today that a Ukrainian Sukhoi fighter jet delivered a rocket near the city of Shakhtarsk, located within the 40-kilometer (25-mile) ceasefire zone around the site of the downed Malaysia Airlines passenger jet.
"This happened at around 11:30 a.m. local time [08:30 GMT]. Two planes were spotted,' a RIA Novosti correspondent said.
The rockets struck a field outside the city. No injuries have been reported so far.
The city of Shakhtarsk, population 61,000, is located 30 kilometers from the crash site of a Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 in eastern Ukraine.
The Ukrainian military and independence supporters agreed on Monday on a ceasefire within a 40-kilometer zone around the crash site to provide access to the area for the international investigators.
A spokesman for Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, Svyatoslav Tsegolko said Monday on his Twitter account that Poroshenko ordered the ceasefire within a 40-kilometer radius.
"The Ukrainian servicemen will not open fire within the radius of 40 kilometers [of the crash site],' Tsegolko said.
Ukrainian news agency UNIAN has confirmed the information. "I ordered [Kiev forces] to stop carrying out military operations or opening fire within the 40-kilometer radius of the site in order to ensure safety of the expert mission,' the agency quoted Petro Poroshenko as saying.
Malaysia Airlines' Flight MH17 en route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur crashed on July 17 near Donetsk in eastern Ukraine. All 298 passengers on board the plane perished, including 283 passengers and 15 crew members.
Russia urged Ukraine not to use the crash for political goals and called for a thorough investigation under UN's International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) auspices.
Late Monday, the UN Security Council condemned the downing of the passenger plane and unanimously voted in support of a thorough and independent international investigation of the incident.
The 15-member council said in a resolution it 'supports efforts to establish a full, thorough and independent international investigation into the incident in accordance with international civil aviation guidelines.'
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