One killed, 4 injured in new clashes in east Ukraine
Iran Press TV
Tue May 5, 2015 5:16PM
Fresh clashes in Ukraine's volatile eastern region have left a volunteer pro-government fighter dead.
The chief of staff of the Ukrainian armed forces said Tuesday that the pro-Russian forces' artillery fire the night before resulted in the killing of the volunteer fighter.
Viktor Muzhenko added that three soldiers were also injured in the clashes, which broke out near the restive city of Donetsk, Ukraine's largest in the east.
The killing of the fighter, who died from his wounds later after the shelling, was confirmed by a volunteer battalion that joined the Ukrainian army in March. Ukraine military's spokesman Andriy Lysenko, however, denied the fighter was from the battalion, saying he was registered by the army.
The attack reportedly targeted Ukrainian forces who were stationed near the ruined airport of Donetsk, a major stronghold of the pro-Russians in east of the country. Lysenko blamed the pro-Russians for the surge of violence in recent days, but admitted that the "provocations" had reduced.
"Yesterday the situation stabilized somewhat... The enemy reduced the number of its provocations," he said, adding that the fresh wave of clashes keeps undermining a shaky truce deal, known as the Minsk agreement.
"The village of Shyrokine remains the main hot point in fighting between our forces and the rebels… The fighting went on almost all day yesterday," Lysenko said about the village that is near Mariuopol, another flashpoint under the control of the government forces.
The pro-Russians also claimed, through a statement on their official news agency, that one of their fighters was wounded in the clashes overnight.
The Minsk agreement, which was signed by leaders of Russia, Ukraine, Germany and France on February 12, was a last-ditch effort to curb the violence in east Ukraine, which up to now, has claimed the lives of more than 6,000 people.
According to the United Nations, more than a million people have been also displaced in the unrest which broke out after former president, Viktor Yanukovych, was ousted in February 2014.
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