Ukraine: Nationalists protest peace deal on separatist areas
About 5,000 Ukrainian nationalists marched across the capital Kyiv Thursday to demand the repudiation of peace agreements for eastern Ukraine that promised a broad autonomy to the separatist regions.Demonstrators also denounced Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyys efforts to secure a lasting cease-fire along the tense line of contact in the conflict with Russia-backed separatists.The conflict in Ukraines eastern industrial heartland called the Donbas erupted in 2014, weeks after Moscow annexed the Crimean Peninsula following the ouster of the countrys Russia-leaning president.
The conflict in Ukraine's eastern industrial heartland called the Donbas erupted in 2014, weeks after Moscow annexed the Crimean Peninsula following the ouster of the country's Russia-leaning president. The fighting between Ukrainian forces and Russia-backed rebels has killed more than 14,000.
A 2015 peace deal signed in Minsk has helped end large-scale fighting, but frequent skirmishes have continued and efforts to achieve a political settlement have failed.
The organisers of Thursday's march urged the Ukrainian government to renounce what they described as “anti-state agreements” and formally outlaw holding elections in “the temporarily occupied territories.” They also assailed Zelenskyy's efforts to end skirmishes across the line of contact as a betrayal of national interests.
Earlier this year, a spike in clashes in the conflict area and a buildup of Russian troops across the border fuelled fears of a renewal of full-scale hostilities.
Zelenskyy on Thursday travelled to the conflict area. Speaking to military cadets, he emphasised the importance of reaching a peaceful settlement.(AP) RUP RUP
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