Violent clashes between Ukrainian armed forces and separatist fighters were reported in Donbas region on Tuesday, April 2. Ukrainian military sources indicate separatist fighters staged ten attacks on Ukrainian positions in Donetsk oblast beginning Tuesday morning (local time). Two Ukrainian soldiers were killed and at least two others were wounded in the fighting. Similar clashes are to be expected in eastern Ukraine over the near term.
Clashes between Ukrainian state forces and separatists have been taking place on a regular basis despite several ceasefire agreements made since 2014. According to the UN, more than 10,300 people have died since the eastern Ukraine conflict erupted in April 2014, soon after Russia annexed Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula. The fighting has displaced more than 1.6 million people. The rebels remain in control of a large swath of territory in Luhansk and Donetsk oblasts, which are mainly Russian-speaking regions.
Due to the ongoing conflict, many Western governments advise against travel to Donetsk and Luhansk provinces - in particular, the cities of Mariupol, Donetsk, Makiyivka, Horlivka, Debaltseve, and Luhansk, as well as areas along the Russian border. The Ukrainian government has stated that foreigners entering Ukraine from Russia through rebel-controlled territory will not be allowed through any checkpoints into government-controlled territory.
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