Donetsk - updates

Rappler's latest stories on Donetsk


Ukraine rivals exchange 200 prisoners in controversial swap

Dec 29, 2019 - 5:51 PM

(4th UPDATE) A plane carrying 76 captives, including 12 military personnel and 64 civilians, is met by a crowd of relatives, some holding flowers and balloons

PREPARATIONS. Ukrainian servicemen are seen in the settlement of Odradivka near the Mayorsk checkpoint prior to a prisoner exchange between Ukraine and pro-Russian rebels on December 29, 2019. Photo by Genya Savilov/AFP

Ukraine rivals to swap prisoners on December 29 – separatists

Dec 28, 2019 - 6:07 PM

(3rd UPDATE) 'Kiev and the Donbass have reached an accord on an exchange of prisoners this Sunday, December 29,' says Donetsk government spokesperson

PRISONER SWAP. In this file photo, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky (C) is talking with officers at the map during his visit to Donetsk region in October 2019. Photo by STR/AFP

MH17 calls 'show ties between Russian officials, rebels'

Nov 14, 2019 - 8:41 PM

(UPDATED) The international probe says the communications raise questions about the possible involvement of top officials in Moscow in the deployment of the missile that shot down the Malaysia Airlines plane in 2014

MH17. A picture taken on July 17, 2014, shows wreckages of the Malaysian airliner carrying 295 people from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur after it crashed, near the town of Shaktarsk, in rebel-held east Ukraine. File photo by Dominique Faget/AFP

Russia eases citizenship rules in east Ukraine

Apr 24, 2019 - 11:14 PM

President Vladimir Putin signs the decree aimed at residents of the unrecognized Donetsk and Lugansk republics that broke away from Kiev in 2014 and are governed by Moscow-backed rebels

DONETSK. In this file photo taken on November 9, 2018, people stand as they wait for Denis Pushilin, acting leader of the self-proclaimed Donetsk Republic, campaigning meeting and the concert in Donetsk. File photo by Aleksey Filippov/AFP

Ukraine separatists hold elections in defiance of capital Kiev

Nov 11, 2018 - 3:28 PM

The election can be traced to 2014, when Russia annexed Crimea and supported the outbreak of an insurgency in eastern Ukraine in what Kiev sees as punishment for its pivot to the West

SUPPORT RALLY. People stand with flags as they wait for Denis Pushilin, the leader of the self-proclaimed Donetsk Republic, during his campaign meeting and a concert in Donetsk on November 9, 2018. Photo by Aleksey Filippo/AFP

Ukraine rebel's murder a 'provocation' against peace, says Kremlin

Sep 01, 2018 - 5:26 PM

Alexander Zakharchenko, head of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic, is killed in a bombing at a cafe in Donetsk, becoming the 4-year conflict's most prominent victim from the Moscow-backed side

SEPARATIST LEADER. In this file photo taken on November 4, 2014, the newly elected leader of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic, Alexander Zakharchenko (R), takes the oath during an inauguration ceremony in the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk. Photo by Alexander Khudoteply/AFP

Nearly 2 million lose mobile access in war-torn east Ukraine

Jan 16, 2018 - 11:48 PM

Vodafone says it appealed to the warring sides and monitors from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) to get its repair crews safe access to the damaged line. 'It has been futile so far,' spokeswoman Viktoria Ruban writes.

Top Ukraine rebel commander killed in 'act of terror'

Feb 08, 2017 - 5:30 PM

Local reports say there was an explosion in his office at the battalion s base

Mikhail Tolstykh, also known as Givi, commander of the pro-Russian separatist Somali battalion, speaks to reporters from their lookout centre near Donetsk's Sergey Prokofiev international airport. File photo by Dominique Faget/AFP

Hasil Liga Europa: Villareal tumbangkan Liverpool 1-0

Apr 29, 2016 - 9:04 AM

Hasil ini menjadi kekalahan perdana Liverpool di Liga Eropa musim ini Di lain tempat Sevilla tahan Shakhtar Donetsk 2 2

Paul Coutinho dari Liverpool mencoba membangun serangan ke gawang Villareal. Namun The Reds kalah 0-1, pada 28 April 2016. Foto dari Twitter/Rappler

Eastern Ukrainian villages change hands despite truce

Jan 05, 2016 - 1:25 PM

International observers have deplored recent military activity in the zone by both Ukrainian troops and pro Russian rebels which they say undermines the prospects for peace in the region

TRUCE ZONE. A picture taken on December 22, 2015 shows Ukrainian servicemen riding on their APS (L) as vehicles of Red Cross deliver wood briquettes for local residents in the village of Pischevik, in the Donetsk region. Aleksey Filippov/AFP

Ukraine's Donetsk rebels ban MSF, UN agencies

Oct 24, 2015 - 10:53 AM

UN agencies such as the World Food Programme would be affected by the ban as they do not have necessary accreditation

MEDICAL AID IN DONETSK. Medical brigade soldiers transport an injured Ukrainian serviceman at the Artemivsk village not far of Debaltseve, Donetsk area, Ukraine, February 19, 2015. Photo by Sergei Kozlov/EPA

The wRap Indonesia: Church burned in Aceh, survivor found from chopper crash

Oct 14, 2015 - 6:00 AM

Other stories include the results of the MH17 probe Thailand s big football win against Vietnam and Indonesia as the guest of honor at the Frankfurt Book Fair

HELICOPTER. The helicopter that crashed was of this model. File photo: EPA

MH17 shot down by BUK missile from war-torn Ukraine

Oct 13, 2015 - 4:01 PM

UPDATED Even though the Dutch led inquiry did not say who pulled the trigger Russian officials disputed the findings set to further degrade strained ties between Moscow and the West

INVESTIGATION. Australian and Dutch investigators examine a piece of debris of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 plane, near the village of Grabove, 100 km from Donetsk, Ukraine, August 1, 2014. File Photo by Igor Kovalenko/EPA

Ukraine says Russia must cede border by end of year

Oct 05, 2015 - 8:22 PM

The Western backed Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko says he never agreed to the terms announced by French President Francois Hollande at a media event held after summit talks on the crisis in Paris on Friday

RUSSIA A 'THREAT'. Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko speaks to supporters during a pro-Ukraine Rally on Parliament Hill in Ottawa during Poroshenko's first official visit to Canada, September 17, 2014. File photo by Goeff Robins/AFP

Ukraine warring sides announce start of small arms withdrawal

Oct 03, 2015 - 9:47 PM

The announcement comes after Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko voiced cautious optimism over the future of a peace deal

Ukraine on edge after clashes as third policeman dies

Sep 02, 2015 - 8:43 AM

The unrest further exacerbates divisions in Poroshenko s ruling coalition with nationalists deeply opposed to giving the separatists greater control over the country s war ravaged east

ANGER IN THE STREET. Opponents of changes to Ukrainian Constitution clash with police in front of Ukrainian Parliament in Kiev, Ukraine, August 31, 2015 as lawmakers accepted the project to changing Ukrainian Constitution about decentralization of power in first reading. Sergey Dolzhenko/EPA

Ukraine rebels withdraw from key frontline village

Jul 04, 2015 - 11:43 AM

But separatists warn that unilateral demilitarization by their side may not be enough to establish a lasting peace

REBELS WITHDRAW. A Ukrainian serviceman walks along boards used as protection against snipers in Shyrokyne, Donetsk region on June 29, 2015. Photo by Anatoli Stepanov/AFP

New deaths and diplomatic warfare rattle Ukraine truce

Jun 14, 2015 - 1:20 PM

The latest fatalities in the twisting and hotly disputed zone separating Ukrainian forces from their pro Russian foes in the separatist east add to the strains of a February truce

READY FOR BATTLE. Volunteers of the Azov Battalion stand in line as the attend parade in the eastern city of Mariupol, Ukraine, June 13, 2015. Sergey Vaganov/EPA

Poroshenko warns of 'colossal threat' of new Ukraine fighting

Jun 04, 2015 - 6:57 PM

Fresh clashes erupt near the rebel stronghold of Donetsk reviving fears in Kiev that the separatists may be gearing up for a new push into government controlled territory

SHELLED. Firemen put out a fire at damaged shops after shelling at a market in the outskirts of Donetsk, Ukraine, June 3, 2015. Alexander Ermochenko/EPA

Ukraine truce talks make no breakthrough in Minsk

May 23, 2015 - 12:42 PM

The latest round of talks in Minsk are relatively low level discussions involving members of a special task force devoted to political settlement issues

'LOW-LEVEL TALKS.' Denis Pushilin (L), self-declared chairman of the Supreme Soviet of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic (DNR), and Vladislav Deinego (R), who represents the self-proclaimed Luhansk People's Republic (LPR) in the negotiations, talk to media at the 'President-Hotel', where Ukraine peace negotiations takes place in Minsk, Belarus, 22 May 2015. Photo by Tatyana Zenkovich/EPA

Ukraine vows to show off 'captured Russian soldiers'

May 19, 2015 - 9:26 AM

The politically charged declaration comes as a tenuous February truce is broken by more violence that claimed the lives of at least 4 Ukrainian servicemen

RECOVERED. A Ukrainian soldier shows a weapon allegedly belonging to Russian servicemen captured by Ukrainian forces, during a briefing for media in General Staff of Ukrainian army in Kiev, Ukraine, 18 May 2015. Roman Pilipey/EPA

Ukraine vows to show off 'captured Russian soldiers'

May 18, 2015 - 8:55 PM

Russia firmly denies any involvement in the Ukrainian conflict and accuses the pro Western leadership in Kiev of waging a war of attrition against its own people in the industrial east of the ex Soviet state

In this file photo, a pro-Russian rebel picks up a Ukrainian flag on February 7, 2015 in the eastern Ukrainian town of Vuglegirsk in the Donetsk region.  AFP PHOTO/ ANDREY BORODULIN

Soldier and civilian killed in intensifying Ukraine clashes

May 04, 2015 - 8:18 AM

For the first time in weeks the town hall in Donetsk reports shelling of the city

DESTROYED. A picture taken on April 23, 2015 shows residential houses destroyed after shelling in the village of Peski, near Donetsk, on April 23, 2015. Oleksandr Ratushniak/AFP

'Grave concern' about Ukraine fighting at 4-way talks

Apr 14, 2015 - 9:30 AM

Foreign ministers from Russia Ukraine France and Germany gather to assess progress in the truce deal agreed in February between the Ukraine government and pro Russian rebels

BERLIN MEETING. French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin, German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov pose for a group photo as they attend a meeting to examine the implementation of the Minsk peace accords at Villa Borsig in Berlin, Germany, April 13, 2015. Clemens Bilan/Pool/EPA

Russia lashes out at law to erase Ukraine's Soviet past

Apr 11, 2015 - 8:48 AM

The package of laws bans Soviet flags and means Soviet era Lenin statues will have to be knocked down and town squares renamed across the country of some 45 million

Four-way talks on Ukraine to be held in Berlin April 13

Apr 09, 2015 - 8:49 AM

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko says the focus of the upcoming talks should be the deployment of a peacekeeping mission to monitor the country s fragile truce

In this file photo, German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, (2-L), points as he, welcomes his counterparts from France, Laurent Fabius (R), Russia, Sergei Lavrov (L), and Ukraine, Pavlo Klimkin (2-R), in Berlin, Germany, 12 January 2015 for a meeting on the situation in Ukraine. Michael Sohn/Pool/EPA

On anniversary of Ukraine war, shelling still shattering lives

Apr 07, 2015 - 10:00 AM

It s hard for us to believe in this ceasefire The shooting has never really ceased here and in the last days it s become worse than usual

RAZED. An international observer of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) inspects a burned house after shelling in the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk on April 6, 2015. Dimitar Dilkoff/AFP

Poroshenko raises decentralization referendum but rebels reject

Apr 07, 2015 - 7:46 AM

Poroshenko: Federalization is like an infection a biological weapon which they are trying to impose from outside Ukraine to destroy our unity And we will not allow it

In this file photo, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko (C) speaks to top military officials in Kiev, Ukraine, 14 February 2015. Sergey Dolzhenko/EPA

Ukraine, Moscow clash over rebel autonomy laws

Mar 19, 2015 - 10:10 AM

The latest wrangling over the east Ukraine peace plan comes as Moscow celebrates the one year anniversary of the annexation of Ukraine s Crimea peninsula

A local woman with her child walks next to a damaged in shelling city market in downtown Donetsk, Ukraine, 18 March 2015. Alexander Ermochenko/EPA

Ukraine says rebels attack near Mariupol, NATO deploys Baltics troops

Mar 09, 2015 - 11:53 PM

UPDATED Meanwhile NATO forces prepared for a major exercise in the Baltics where Russia s involvement in the Ukraine war has jangled nerves

ROCK THE VOTE. People hold Russian flags as they gather at Lenin Square after the end of the referendum in Simferopol, Crimea, Ukraine, March 16, 2014. Photo by Yuri Kochetkov/EPA

West vows 'strong' response if Ukraine truce violated

Mar 04, 2015 - 8:09 AM

Western leaders call for a strong reaction from the international community to any major violation of a ceasefire in eastern Ukraine

Ukrainian servicemen ride on an APC as a column of military vehicles rolls on a road near Artyomovsk, Donetsk area, Ukraine, 03 March 2015. Anastasia Vlasova/EPA

Kerry meets Lavrov as Ukraine death toll soars

Mar 02, 2015 - 7:47 PM

The meeting with Sergei Lavrov in Geneva came less than a week after Kerry accused Moscow of lying about its involvement in the conflict

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry addresses the 28th Session of the Human Rights Council at the United Nations in Geneva March 2, 2015. Denis Balibouse/Reuters

Ukraine's Mariupol holds its breath for next rebel move

Mar 02, 2015 - 2:47 PM

While a fragile two week old ceasefire shows signs of holding Kiev says pro Russian separatists are using the truce to regroup their forces especially around Mariupol

People walk past a house damaged by recent shelling in Mariupol, a city on the Sea of Azov, in this January 26, 2015 file photo. Nikolai Ryabchenko/Files/Reuters

Two killed as clashes threaten Ukraine truce

Mar 01, 2015 - 12:38 AM

UPDATED The two warring sides both said they were continuing the withdrawal of heavy weapons from the front

AMONG THE RUINS. A man works to repair a damaged building after heavy fighting in eastern Ukrainian town Ilovaysk, Donetsk area, Ukraine, 27 February 2015. Luca Piergiovanni/EPA

Ukraine says pulling back arms as US, Russia trade barbs

Feb 26, 2015 - 10:43 PM

The announcement of the pull back comes after a shaky truce that was meant to come into force February 15 finally took hold across the conflict zone in recent days

A Ukrainian military commander known under the nom de guerre 'Sobol' stands in position in Shyrokino village, near Mariupol, Donetsk area, Ukraine, 25 February 2015. Anastasia Vlasova/EPA

Fears for truce as attacking rebels mass near Ukraine port city

Feb 24, 2015 - 11:16 AM

Continued hostilities meant a pull back of heavy weapons could not go ahead as agreed Ukrainian officials say

READY. A Ukrainian serviceman stands in a truck pulling a twin-barreled anti-aircraft gun as his unit on withdrawal has a rest in the village of Artemivsk, near Debaltseve, Donetsk area, Ukraine, 23 February 2015. Anastasia Vlasova/EPA

Ukraine rebels mark Soviet holiday for defenders of 'fatherland'

Feb 24, 2015 - 9:13 AM

But while the mood is celebratory there is still a somber moment of silence to remember those killed fighting for the pro Moscow insurgency

'FATHERLAND' A pro-Russian rebel holds a flag as he attends a rally to mark the 'Defender of the Fatherland Day' in Donetsk, Ukraine, 23 February 2015. Alexander Ermochenko/EPA

Arms pullback accord, prisoner swap bolster shaky Ukraine truce

Feb 22, 2015 - 4:52 PM

UPDATED But ongoing breaches of a week old ceasefire have already prompted a threat from the United States of serious new sanctions against Moscow within days

Major prisoner swap bolsters shaky Ukraine truce

Feb 22, 2015 - 11:35 AM

The rare glint of optimism comes on the heels of a pro Russian rebel offensive in the east capturing a major town from loyalists and drawing threats of new sanctions against Moscow

A pro-Russian rebel walk by a twin-barrelkled anti-aircraft gun in the streets of Debaltseve, Donetsk area, Ukraine, 21 February 2015.  Alexander Ermochenko/EPA

Ukraine calls for peacekeepers after rebels take key town

Feb 19, 2015 - 11:01 AM

The loss is a bitter blow to the Ukrainian army and leaves a last ditch peace plan hammered out by the leaders of Ukraine Russia Germany and France hanging by a thread

RETREAT. Ukrainian servicemen on an armored military vehicle as they leave territory around Debaltseve, near Artyomovsk, Donetsk area, Ukraine, 18 February 2015. Anastasia Vlasova/EPA

Ukraine urges West to get 'tough' on Russia after rebels storm town

Feb 18, 2015 - 7:50 AM

As EU and UN officials express concern at the violence in the town of Debaltseve Russian President Vladimir Putin urges Kiev to permit its beleaguered soldiers to surrender

A view of an explosion is seen from the shelled gas pipe near the power station, not far from Debaltseve of Donetsk area, Ukraine, 17 February 2015. Anastacia Vlasova/EPA

Access agreed for OSCE monitors in Ukraine – Berlin

Feb 17, 2015 - 3:42 PM

The agreement is aimed at allowing observers from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe OSCE to monitor the situation on the ground around the strategic railway hub of Debaltseve

An Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) observer (C) looks at a damaged building in Debaltseve, near Donetsk, Ukraine, 06 February 2015. Vladimir Vladimirov/EPA

'Stop shooting,' EU pleads as Ukraine ceasefire teeters

Feb 17, 2015 - 7:47 AM

Fighting rages around a strategic railway hub and both sides say conditions are not met to start withdrawing heavy weapons from the frontline

EMERGENCY. Separatist rebels help an injured comrade near a hospital in Donetsk, Ukraine, 16 February 2015. Alexander Ermochenko/EPA

Ukraine truce largely observed – except around flashpoint town

Feb 15, 2015 - 10:34 PM

UPDATED Ukraine s military says that across the entire conflict zone its soldiers positions had come under fire from the rebels 60 times on Sunday with Debaltseve the main hotspot

STRUGGLE FOR NORMAL. Locals, wary of the violence in Ukraine, receive humanitarian aid supplies in the village of Shirokino, some 20 km from the eastern Ukrainian city of Mariupol, Ukraine. Photo by Sergey Vaganov/EPA

Ukraine ceasefire begins after fierce fighting in besieged town

Feb 15, 2015 - 10:47 AM

An agreed ceasefire in Ukraine goes into effect under a cloud of mistrust after fighting raged until the last minute and Kiev and the US accused Russia of fueling a final push by rebels to gain territory

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko (C) speaks to top military officials in Kiev, Ukraine, 14 February 2015. Sergey Dolzhenko/EPA

Marathon Ukraine peace summit agrees ceasefire

Feb 12, 2015 - 8:08 PM

Russian President Vladimir Putin says he German Chancellor Angela Merkel French President Francois Hollande and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko agree on the main points

MEET THE PRESS. (L-R) Russian President Vladimir Putin, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Francois Hollande and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko pose during for a group photo during the Ukraine peace talks in Minsk, Belarus, 11 February 2015. Maxim Shipenkov/EPA

Ukraine peace summit drags on as leaders wrangle

Feb 12, 2015 - 8:22 AM

The crunch 4 way meeting is the climax of a frantic European diplomatic drive aimed at stopping the worst East West crisis since the end of the Cold War from escalating

GROUP PHOTO. (L-R) Russian President Vladimir Putin, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Francois Hollande and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko pose for the media during a group photo opportunity at the Ukraine crisis meeting of the so-called Normandy group, in Minsk, Belarus, 11 February 2015. Tatyana Zenkovich/Pool/EPA

Obama delays Ukraine arms decision amid diplomatic whirlwind

Feb 10, 2015 - 3:35 PM

Obama says he hopes Merkel could reach a deal with Russian President Vladimir Putin to end 10 months of bloodshed in eastern Ukraine but warned more punitive measures are in the pipeline if that fails

US President Barack Obama (L) shakes hands with Chancellor of Germany Angela Merkel (R) at the conclusion of their joint news conference in the East Room of the White House in Washington DC, USA, 09 February 2015. Michael Reynolds/EPA

EU suspends new sanctions pending Ukraine summit

Feb 10, 2015 - 9:33 AM

EU foreign ministers postpone new sanctions against Russia for a week to boost the chances of success at a 4 way Ukraine peace summit Wednesday

Servicemen of volunteers battalion Azov in action during their military training near Mariupol of Donetsk area, Ukraine, 06 February 2015. Ivan Boberskyy/EPA

4-way emergency Ukraine summit planned February 11

Feb 09, 2015 - 11:38 AM

The leaders of Ukraine Germany and France are pushing for a summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin in a frantic bid to halt escalating bloodshed in eastern Ukraine

TIRED. Ukrainian servicemen rest on a tank in Artyomovsk of Donetsk area, Ukraine, 08 February 2015. Oleg Petrasyuk/EPA