Recapture Their Leader On The Eve Of Peace Talks In Ukraine
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[May 17, 2014]
KIEV (Reuters) - Pro-Russian
separatist leader Valery Bolotov was detained by Ukrainian border guards
on Saturday then freed by armed supporters in a firefight at the
checkpoint, a Ukrainian spokesman said.
The incident took place just a few hours before peace talks in the
eastern town of Kharkiv. The talks were initiated by Ukrainian
authorities to ease the situation in east.
Bolotov, the self-proclaimed governor of Ukraine's eastern Luhansk
region, was detained at the checkpoint as he returned from treatment
in Russia for wounds he suffered in an attack on Tuesday, border
guards spokesman Oleh Slobodyan said.
About 200 armed separatists went to the checkpoint and demanded his
release. A fight broke out in which the separatists used grenades
and machine guns.
"They recaptured Bolotov. We are trying to find out whether there
are victims," Slobodyan said.
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The eastern rebellion by pro-Russian separatists has shaken Ukraine
and pushed Western powers into a confrontation with Russian
President Vladimir Putin, whom they accuse of destabilizing Ukraine.
(Reporting by Pavel Polityuk; Editing by Angus MacSwan)
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