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Iran Press TV

Five killed in eastern Ukraine violence

Iran Press TV

Sun May 31, 2015 5:24PM

At least five people have been killed in eastern Ukraine clashes over the past 24 hours, Ukrainian military sources say.

On Sunday, Ukrainian military spokesman, Evgen Silokin, said two soldiers lost their lives in Marinka, located west of the city of Donetsk. A third soldier was killed in Shirokine, near the southeastern city of Mariupol.

Lugansk regional governor, Gennady Moskal, said two civilians also died in a bomb blast.

Clashes broke out after Ukrainian soldiers attacked positions of pro-Russia forces near the eastern Ukrainian Donetsk region. Reports say Ukrainian forces used automatic weapons and grenades.

The pro-Russians also attacked army positions near Donetsk in response.

Violence over the past few days has claimed the lives of nearly 15 people in Donetsk and Lugansk.

The port city of Mariupol, which is located on a highway that connects areas under the control of pro-Russia forces in the east and the Black Sea peninsula of Crimea, has also witnessed clashes in recent days.

The clashes are in violation of a ceasefire deal signed in the Belarusian capital city of Minsk on February 11-12, known as the Minks II agreement.

Under the peace deal, the two conflicting sides were expected to withdraw heavy weaponry from conflict zones and start negotiations on holding local elections in the restive eastern areas.

On May 28, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said the government would not hold talks with the self-proclaimed Russian-speaking regions of Ukraine until "fair elections" were held.

The eastern Ukraine's regions of Lugansk and Donetsk, which are home to the country's ethnic Russians, have been the scene of deadly clashes between pro-Russia forces and Ukrainian army soldiers since Kiev launched its military offensive to crush pro-Moscow protests in April 2014.

Nearly 7,000 people have lost their lives so far in the 13-month crisis in eastern Ukraine.


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