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US Secretary John Kerry condemns rocket attacks in Ukraine

US Secretary John Kerry condemns rocket attacks in Ukraine

India Blooms News Service | 25 Jan 2015, 04:50 pm
Washington, Jan 25 (IBNS): US Secretary of State John Kerry has strongly condemned the Russian separatists backed attacks in Ukraine government-held port of Mariupol which claimed at least 20 lives.
"I join my European counterparts in condemning in the strongest terms today's horrific assault by Russia-backed separatists on civilian neighborhoods in Mariupol, a peaceful city 25 kilometers outside of the Minsk ceasefire line, using Grad rocket systems and other advanced weaponry," Kerry said in a statement.
With smoke rising from apartment buildings and playgrounds from over 40 rounds of powerful rockets, media are reporting over 100 wounded. OSCE monitors have confirmed at least 20 are dead including women, children, and the elderly. 
"It is reprehensible that the separatists are publicly glorifying this and other offensives in blatant violation of the Minsk agreements they signed," said he.
He called the attacks as Russia's irresponsible decision.
"The separatists' new offensive, not just in Mariupol and Debaltseve, but along the ceasefire line, has been aided and abetted by Russia's irresponsible and dangerous decision to resupply them in recent weeks with hundreds of new pieces of advanced weaponry, including rocket systems, heavy artillery, tanks, armored vehicles, in addition to continuing operational command and control," said he.
The US Secretary called on Russia to end its backing for the rebels.
"Russia's commitment to the Minsk agreements it signed will be assessed by its actions not its words. We call on Russia to end its support for separatists immediately, close the international border with Ukraine, and withdraw all weapons, fighters and financial backing. Otherwise, U.S. and international pressure on Russia and its proxies will only increase," Kerry said.
At least 20 people have lost their lives and 100 others were injured in a series of rocket attacks by pro-Russian rebels in Ukraine government-held port of Mariupol, media reports said on Sunday.
The Grad rockets also hit a market in a residential area in the east of the city, the police chief was quoted as saying by BBC.
More than 5,000 people were killed in fighting in the east since April.

US Secretary John Kerry condemns rocket attacks in Ukraine

India Blooms News Service
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