Monitor warns of 'massive upsurge in violence' in Ukraine

Mourners pay their respects to a serviceman who died in heavy fighting in the Donetsk region of Ukraine, during his funeral in Kiev on December 22, 2016The chief European monitor for the war in Ukraine warned Thursday that a “massive upsurge in violence” has seen fighting between Kiev’s forces and pro-Russian rebels reach levels not seen in months. The statement by Alexander Hug of the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) came a day after the body hailed progress toward a New Year’s truce agreement that must still be approved by the insurgents. Ukrainian forces have lost nearly 10 soldiers since Sunday the conflict that has simmered in the European Union’s backyard since 2014.

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