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Ukraine Separatist Leader Injured In Attack

Igor Plotnitsky

Igor Plotnitsky

The leader of a Russia-backed separatist group in eastern Ukraine has been injured in an assassination attempt, the separatists say.

Igor Plotnitsky, the head of a group that calls itself the Luhansk People's Republic, "was wounded this morning as a result of a powerful explosion that occurred near his car," the official separatists' news agency reported on August 6.

The report said Plotnitsky was being treated at a local hospital along with several other people who suffered injuries in the blast in the city of Luhansk.

A top official in the group, Serhiy Kozlov, said Plotnitsky was in stable condition and that there is no threat to his life.

Oleksandr Motuzyanyk, a spokesman for Kyiv's military operations in the east, said the Ukrainian side was not involved in the attack.

Fighting between Ukrainian government forces and Russia-backed separatists in the eastern regions of Donetsk and Luhansk has killed more than 9,500 people since April 2014.

Based on reporting by AFP, TASS, and Interfax