One Ukrainian Soldier Killed Fighting Separatists

Ukraine says one of its soldiers has been killed and five wounded in clashes in the country’s east.

The Defense Ministry said on April 17 that Russia-backed separatists violated a frequently breached cease-fire 52 times during the previous 24 hours, firing artillery, machine guns, grenade launchers, and mortars.

Meanwhile, the separatists claimed that Ukrainian government forces violated the cease-fire by shelling the separatist-controlled town of Horlivka in the Donetsk region.

Since April 2014, more than 10,300 people have been killed in fighting between Kyiv’s forces and the separatists who control parts of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions.

Cease-fire deals announced as part of the Minsk accords — September 2014 and February 2015 pacts aimed to resolve the conflict — have failed to hold.

A new cease-fire agreement was reached in late 2017 and was meant to begin on December 23, but both sides have accused each other of repeated violations since then.

With reporting by DAN and TASS