MOSCOW, July 27 (RIA Novosti) - An air-raid alert has been announced on Sunday morning in the Ukrainian city of Luhansk, the city is preparing for another air attack or shelling, a representative of the local police department told RIA Novosti.
“Yes, we are expecting an air attack or shelling. Literally, 20 minutes ago an air-raid alert was issued,” he said.
According to reports on Friday, fifteen civilians were killed and about 60 injured in a mortar attack on Luhansk.
Later, the press service of the self-proclaimed Luhansk People’s Republic reported that 19 people died as of Saturday. According to a local police representative, even more than 19 people are feared dead.
The Luhansk city council reports, however, that “five civilians were injured as a result of shelling in the past 24 hours, with no casualties.”
Kiev since mid-April has been pursuing a violent crackdown on the independence movement in Ukraine's east. The fighting intensified after Donetsk and Luhansk regions proclaimed themselves independent people’s republics. Hundreds of people, including civilians have died in both regions over the past months.
Moscow has described the ongoing military action as a punitive operation and has repeatedly called on Kiev to put an immediate end to the bloodshed. Russia’s Foreign Ministry has also urged the international community to intervene and investigate the crimes against humanity that occurred in Ukraine in the recent months.