Friday, May 29, 2015Friday, May 29, 2015

Ukraine 'on full combat alert' against possible Russia invasion

Published on Apr 30, 2014 5:38 PM
Ukrainian soldiers stand guard in front of armoured personnel carriers at a check point near the village of Malinivka, southeast of Slaviansk, in eastern Ukraine, on April 29, 2014. Ukraine's military is "on full combat alert" against a possible invasion by Russian troops massed on the border, acting President Oleksandr Turchynov said in a ministerial meeting in Kiev on Wednesday. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

KIEV (AFP) - Ukraine's military is "on full combat alert" against a possible invasion as pro-Russian insurgents tightened their grip on the increasingly chaotic east of the country.

Rebels stormed the regional police building and town hall in the eastern Ukrainian city of Gorlivka, local officials told AFP, bringing to more than a dozen the number of locations under their control.

The new seizure followed clashes in nearby Lugansk late on Tuesday, as hundreds of pro-Russia protesters spearheaded by a heavily armed mob took control of the police station after a fraught stand-off.

Ukraine's interim president Oleksandr Turchynov told his cabinet that the nation's armed forces were on "full combat alert" as fears grew in Kiev that Russia could mount an armed invasion of the ex-Soviet republic.

Enjoy 2 weeks of unlimited digital access to The Straits Times. Get your free access now!