Rebels storm Ukraine's Donetsk airport: many killed

2014-10-06 Vatican Radio

(Vatican Radio) At least some 12 pro-Russian rebels have reportedly been killed in fighting around the airport of Ukraine's eastern city of Donetsk. Pro-Russian rebels could be seen dragging the body of a fellow fighter to a truck in what the bloodiest clashes since a ceasefire was agreed last month. They soon ran for cover amid heavy shelling.     

Listen to the report by Stefan Bos:

Ukraine's military claimed they killed a dozen rebels over the past day, the worst reported casualty in recent weeks. 

The fighting centers around the airport of the eastern city of Donetsk.

Pro-Russian separatists stormed its two terminal buildings Saturday, but they were quickly repelled by government troops.

MORE FIGHTING

Fighting has also intensified elsewhere with shells hitting apartment buildings, a school and a bus stop. 

Even the headquarters of the International Committee of the Red Cross in Donetsk was hit last week, killing staff worker Laurent DuPasquier, a Swiss national who had worked for the organization in crisis-hit areas around the world. 

It was the first first time Red Cross workers came under fire in eastern Ukraine.

Kiev has accused Russia of supporting the rebels with weapons and troops despite a ceasefire agreement, charges Moscow denies. 

GOVERNMENT ACCUSED

Instead the rebels have accused Ukrainian government forces of breaching the truce. 

The conflict that has killed more than 3,000 people and displaced hundreds of thousands of residents, according to United Nations officials.  

Negotiators representing Russia, Rebels, Ukraine and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe had agreed to create a buffer zone that obliged all parties to remove artillery back from the front lines. 

That has reduced hostilities in several regions, but fighting continues around strategic locations such as Donetsk.    

(from Vatican Radio)