Russian separatists claim 35 deaths at Donetsk airport

Fighting between Ukrainian forces and pro-Russian separatists at Donetsk airport in eastern Ukraine has killed dozens of insurgents, according to unconfirmed reports Tuesday.

The Kiev Post, citing a Facebook post by Pavlo Hubarev, who refers to himself as the "people's governor of the Donetsk People's Republic," reported that 35 militants loyal to Moscow were killed when a truck they were traveling in was hit by a grenade.

An Associated Press report, based on comments it received from a rebel fighter, corroborated the claim, but the fighter wouldn't give his name because of security concerns. Ukraine's new government has not yet commented on the alleged deaths.

Both sides said they are in control of at least parts of Donetsk International Airport following clashes that started Monday after the election of candy magnate Petro Poroshenko as Ukraine's president. He has vowed to negotiate a peaceful end to the crisis.

"The anti-terrorist operation cannot and should not last two or three months," Poroshenko said Monday. "It should and will last hours."


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