Ukrainian forces repelled
the 2 a.m. attack by a group of some 70 to 100 rebels who were armed with
automatic weapons and rocket-propelled grenades, the country’s Ministry
of Defense and Interior
Minister Arsen Avakov reported. Hand grenades were used by the rebels in
the assault, the Defense Ministry said.
Avakov said the group
was led by a man with “an extensive beard,” hinting at pro-Russian separatist Alexander
Mozhaev, who has been seen colluding with insurgents in the nearby city of
Sloviansk. There, separatists have seized the city’s security services and
administration buildings and taken several journalists hostage.
Oleksandr Turchynov said in a statement that the attackers in Artemivsk sustained a “heavy”
but unspecified number of casualties during the failed assault on the military
installation on Chaikovskoho Street. Meanwhile, a
Ukrainian soldier was “lightly wounded.”