A Ukrainian police and paratroopers guard as they and other comrades block a road outside the town of Slovyansk, eastern Ukraine, Sunday, May 4, 2014. (AP Photo/Evgeniy Maloletka)
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The smouldering wreckage of rebel checkpoints, locals in makeshift balaclavas brandishing sawn-off shotguns and besieged cities on edge.In the town itself, people are bracing for a further army assault.It is a quiet, sunny Sunday in the provincial town of Kramatorsk – around 10 kilometers from Slavyansk – but people are still reeling from a fierce firefight Saturday when the Ukrainian army attacked a nearby rebel post, killing at least one person.Despite claims from Ukraine's security service that it had ousted the rebels, the town remains – for now – in the hands of the separatists.Between Kramatorsk and Slavyansk, the army has positioned six armored vehicles at a checkpoint, cutting the towns off from each other.
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