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Russian state TV says five killed in east Ukraine clash

  • A pro-Russian protester wearing a balaclava and holding a baseball bat sits next to piles of bricks and tyres outside a regional government building in Donetsk, eastern Ukraine April 19, 2014. A day after an international deal in Geneva to defuse the East-West crisis in Ukraine, pro-Russian separatists vowed not to end their occupation of public buildings and Washington threatened further sanctions on Moscow if the stalemate continued. REUTERS/Marko Djurica

MOSCOW/KIEV: Russian state television reported Sunday that five people were killed when gunmen attacked a checkpoint manned by pro-Russian separatists near the eastern Ukrainian city of Slaviansk.

Reuters was not immediately able to verify the report. Ukraine's Interior Ministry in Kiev could not immediately be reached for comment and Interior Minister Arsen Avakov had no word of the reported incident on his Facebook page, where he usually posts updates on any clashes.

Russia's state-run Rossiya 24 news station, citing its correspondent in Slaviansk, said three of the dead were with the pro-Russian separatists who control Slaviansk, and the other two were from the group which attacked their checkpoint.

The self-declared mayor of Slaviansk, who supports the pro-Russian separatists in the city, said there had been a clash overnight and there were casualties, a Reuters Television team in Slaviansk said.

 
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