Ukrainian Army Deaths at Most Since 2015 as Conflict Worsens

  • 7 servicemen killed, 14 wounded in fighting in past 24 hours
  • Renewed diplomacy fails to ease conflict in nation’s east

Ukraine’s army suffered its deadliest month since August 2015 as international diplomacy fails to stem more than two years of fighting in the nation’s east.

Seven soldiers were killed and 14 wounded in the past 24 hours, the biggest daily death toll since May, military spokesman Andriy Lysenko said Tuesday. That brings the number of fatalities in July to 30. The casualties were spread across the conflict zone, where government troops have been battling pro-Russian insurgents since April 2014.

“Enemies were firing day and night from different types of weapons, including heavy arms,” Lysenko said by web link from the capital, Kiev. “The situation is tough.”

The simmering conflict in Ukraine’s easternmost regions remains far from resolution after a 2015 peace accord wasn’t implemented on time. Talks between Ukraine, Russia, Germany and France have made little progress. With reports of daily cease-fire violations, the United Nations estimates that at least 9,470 people have died.

The threat of escalation remains as both sides are too close to each other, Alexander Hug, deputy head of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe’s mission in Ukraine, said this month.

Ukraine has informed its “Western partners” about the cease-fire violations, Oleksandr Turchynov, head of the National Security and Defense Council, said in an e-mailed statement. “If these dangerous trends continue, Ukraine will take all necessary steps to defend the integrity of our country and citizens.”

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