Ukraine blame Russians for fatal attack at peace march

February 24, 2015 7:46 am

accused of sponsoring a terrorist attack on a peace
march in the city of that left two dead and at least 10 wounded.
In
the deadliest blast of a bombing campaign by pro-Russian separatists,
an explosive device was thrown from a car towards marchers who were
commemorating the deaths of more than 100 protesters in last year’s
revolution.

A Russian-backed separatist searches for functional weapons and ammunition near Lohvynove. Photo / AP
Ukrainian authorities said they had arrested four
suspects shortly after the attack, claiming that the men had received
training in a Russian city just across the border.
“They are
Ukrainian citizens, who underwent instruction and received weapons in
the Russian Federation, in Belgorod,” said , an aide
to the head of the Ukrainian security agency, the SBU.
The blast
was the latest in several months of bomb attacks on targets in
government-held cities including Kharkiv, Odessa, Mariupol and Kiev.
Previous bombings tended to avoid casualties, targeting the offices of
pro-Kiev groups or infrastructure at night.

Before yesterday, the bloodiest attack had been the bombing of a bar in Kharkiv on November 9 that injured 11 people.
Kharkiv
is 225km from the conflict zone but is considered by pro-Russian
separatists to be part of Novorossia, a historic term for lands annexed
by Moscow in the 18th century on which the rebels base their territorial
ambitions. It was the scene of violent pro-Russian protests in spring
last year, but an attempt to set up a breakaway “People’s Republic” like
those established in Luhansk and Donetsk lasted just hours before being
put down by police. It is now firmly under government control and its
many arms factories play a key role in the Ukrainian war effort.
Earlier
in the day Russian-backed separatists said that they would pull back
heavy weapons in accordance with the Minsk peace accords, raising hopes
that a truce could be salvaged despite the failure of a week-old
ceasefire.

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