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Over 50 Injured, 3 Dead in Ukraine’s Slaviansk Since Start of Military Op

© RIA Novosti . Andrey Stenin / Go to the photo bankA woman in her house damaged during the night artillery attack conducted by Ukrainian troops on the outskirts of Slavyansk
A woman in her house damaged during the night artillery attack conducted by Ukrainian troops on the outskirts of Slavyansk - Sputnik International
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More than 50 people have been taken to hospitals since the start of the military operation in Ukraine's Slaviansk, the head of the health department of the city council said Tuesday.

MOSCOW, May 20 (RIA Novosti) – More than 50 people have been taken to hospitals since the start of the military operation in Ukraine's Slaviansk, the head of the health department of the city council said Tuesday.

“Since April 12, the city hospitals have received a total of 55 people, three of them died within the first hour, suffering injuries incompatible with life,” Elena Dzhim said, according to the city's website.

According to Dzhim, 14 people in city hospitals suffered from gunshot and shell fragment wounds and four patients have come in over the past 24 hours. There was no information on whether these victims were affiliated with pro-federalization forces.

Ukraine went through a regime change resembling a military coup on February 22. The country’s parliament ousted President Viktor Yanukovych, changed the constitution and scheduled early presidential elections for May 25.

Since March, anti-government protests have been spreading across southeastern regions of the country, where people refuse to recognize the interim government in Kiev and have called for federalization. Ukraine’s new interim authorities, backed by radical ultranationalist groups, launched a special operation to crack down on the protesters in mid-April, which has already led to dozens of deaths and injuries.

Moscow has called on Kiev to immediately stop the military operation in southeastern Ukraine, expressing hopes that the West will “actively influence” Kiev to start work on national reconciliation in the country. On Monday Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said that Kiev’s military operation “has turned into a terrorizing campaign against the citizens of Ukraine on the grounds of their political beliefs.”

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