Kiev says government forces retaken part of Lugansk

Kiev says government forces retaken part of Lugansk

Tue Aug 19, 2014 4:58PM GMT

Ukraine says government forces have taken control of a district in the eastern city of Lugansk, as fierce fighting with pro-Russia forces continues in the area.

Andriy Lysenko, a spokesman for Ukraine’s National Security Council, said on Tuesday that the country’s forces captured the district, located near the Russian border, adding, “The fighting is already taking place in the central parts of the city.”

He also said that the country’s troops continued to attack the positions of pro-Russia forces in the city of Donetsk, adding that the cities of Alchevsk and Ilovaisk have been blockaded by government troops.

A senior commander of Ukrainian forces was reportedly wounded in the fighting with pro-Russia forces.

Ukraine’s eastern regions have witnessed deadly clashes between pro-Russia protesters and the Ukrainian army since Kiev launched military operations there in mid-April. The conflict has so far claimed the lives of more than 2,000 people, according the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR).

According to UN figures, nearly 300,000 people have been also forced to flee their homes due to fierce fighting in the east.

The humanitarian situation in the regions is getting worse. People in Lugansk have been left without electricity and running water for 17 days.

Meanwhile, the Kremlin has announced that Russian President Vladimir Putin will hold talks with his Ukrainian counterpart Petro Poroshenko in the capital city of Belarus, Minsk, with top EU officials on August 26.

The meeting will come three days after a visit by German Chancellor Angela Merkel to Kiev for talks with Ukraine’s authorities.

Kiev and its Western allies accuse Russia of supporting the forces fighting in east Ukraine but Moscow has denied the allegations.

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