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Ukrainian civilian killed during frontline shelling in Ukraine

A Ukrainian civilian was killed in a shelling attack on a government-held village on Monday, officials said. The incident came at a time when fears of an imminent Russian invasion were growing. 

The civilian, identified only as a man born in 1970, died in an attack on Novoluganske, 35 km north of Donetsk, a rebel stronghold in eastern Ukraine. 

According to the latest report, the death marks the first confirmed civilian casualty of the year in Ukraine’s eight-year separatist conflict, in which more than 14,000 people have died and 1.5 million are displaced. 

Ukraine’s western-backed leadership has also confirmed the death of five soldiers this year. But it comes with clashes in the east intensifying and fears rising of a Russian assault in Ukraine.  

On Monday, Putin said he would decide whether to recognize the independence of Ukraine’s two separatist regions, officially scrapping a 2015 peace plan for ending the war. 

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