Moscow Claims Ukraine Shell Killed One in Russia Territory, Vows 'Irreversible Consequences'
A Ukraine shell landed on a Russian border town of Donetsk in the Rostov region and killed one person. Moscow told Kiev there will be “irreversible consequences” for the action.
“At about 09:02 from Ukraine into the territory of the city of Donetsk (Rostov region) came a shell. Damaged were two private houses in Baltiyskaya Street. One Russian citizen, born in 1967, was killed,” a Russian official told ITAR-TASS.
"This incident is evidence of the very dangerous escalation of tension in the Russian-Ukrainian border area, and could have irreversible consequences, the responsibility for which lies with the Ukrainian side," said the foreign ministry's official statement.
Kiev denies the shell came from the Ukrainian army.
"There is a report that this shelling was carried out by Ukrainian forces. This is total nonsense and the information is untrue,” said Andriy Lysenko, spokesman for Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council. "The forces of the anti-terrorist operation do not fire on the territory of a neighboring country and they do not fire on residential areas. We have many examples of terrorists carrying out provocation shooting, including into Russian territory, and then accusing Ukrainian forces of it."
Over 30 people died in east Ukraine, including 19 soldiers, on Friday and Saturday. The pro-Russian forces even opened fire on a bus carrying miners to work and killed five of the men.
"All those who used the Grad against the Armed Forces of Ukraine will be found and destroyed," President Petro Poroshenko said in a statement on his website on Friday. "For every soldier's life, the militants will pay with scores and hundreds of their own. Not a single terrorist will avoid responsibility; each will get what they deserve.”
Russian media in the Rostov region said Ukraine violated Russia’s airspace after the attack.
“We arrived this morning in a suburb of the city. And during the filming, while the investigative committee worked here, over the suburb of the city, a Ukrainian aircraft entered Russian territory, and all eyes thought it was an airstrike, apparently, from the territory of Ukraine. All the people were afraid and they ran away," Maxim Grytsenko told the ITAR-TASS News Agency.
Grytsenko’s claim has not been verified by Russia or denied by Ukraine. However, it should be noted Russia violated Ukraine’s sovereignty numerous times since parliament ousted Russia-backed President Viktor Yanukovych in February. Moscow annexed Ukraine’s Black Sea peninsula Crimea in March and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Russia supplies the pro-Russian forces with “humanitarian aid.” He did not specify the aid, but one militia member said it includes military equipment. Kiev said three Russian tanks entered Ukraine territory and NATO confirmed the suspicions with satellite images from the Rostov region.