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At least 3,660 killed in E.Ukraine crisis: UN

(Xinhua) Updated: 2014-10-08 21:32

KIEV -- At least 3,660 people have been killed and 8,756 wounded in the violent fighting in eastern Ukraine since mid-April, according to an United Nations report reaching here on Wednesday.

"In spite of a fragile ceasefire over the past month in the east of Ukraine, the protracted conflict continues to kill and wound civilians," the press service of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid al-Hussein said.

According to the report, at least 331 fatalities were recorded in eastern regions since the ceasefire between government troops and independence-seeking insurgents was declared in the early September.

The conflicts have also displaced over 375,000 people and directly affected more than 5 million residents in the combat areas, the report said.

While releasing the report, al-Hussein voiced his concern over the lack of rule of law in the areas held by the armed groups, in particular the shelling of civilians, the illegal seizure of property and the ill-treatment of detainee.

"All parties must ensure that there are no reprisals for perceived collaboration or affiliation with an opposing camp," he said.

Crisis in eastern Ukraine began in mid-April, when Kiev launched offensives against pro-independence insurgents in a bid to retake the cities and towns seized by them.

On Sept 5, a ceasefire was signed between the two confronting sides, which resulted in a period of fragile calm over the most parts of the combat area.

However, clashes still occur in the rebel's stronghold of Donetsk, its outskirts, and the town of Shchastya in the neighboring Lugansk region.

Over the past 24 hours, three pro-government soldiers were killed and 12 wounded in fighting with rebels in eastern Ukraine, according to Andrei Lysenko, a spokesman for Ukraine's National Security and Defense Council.

Meanwhile, three civilians died and four other were injured following the shelling overnight Wednesday in Donetsk, the local municipal council said.