SLAVIANSK, May 12 (RIA Novosti) – Several residents of a village in eastern Ukraine have been killed in mortar fire during an attack by the Ukrainian army, a member of the local self-defense forces told RIA Novosti Monday.
“There was mortar fire. It destroyed homes and set cars ablaze,” a source at the federalist headquarters in nearby Slaviansk told RIA Novosti.
According to the activist, the shelling of Andreevka, a village with a population of around 1,600, killed several civilians, though the final death toll was still pending. “There have been casualties, but their number hasn’t been confirmed yet,” he said.
On Sunday, the government in Kiev announced the final phase of its “anti-terrorist” operation against the restive territories, with the Interior Ministry claiming to have razed roadblocks near Andreevka, as well as near other flashpoint cities in the southeast.
Russia has called the Western-backed military operation against protesters a "punitive act" and accused Ukraine’s authorities of waging a war against their own people.