Ukraine’s Interior Ministry is claiming to have killed at least 30 “terrorists” in the eastern city of Slovyansk, which is under control of protesters and being attacked by Interior Ministry forces.
The death toll is impossible to confirm because of the chaos in the city, but seems to be disputed to varying degrees by protester-linked factions, who have put the toll anywhere between 10 and 25, including many unarmed protesters.
The most recent round of attacks on Slovyansk began Friday, but stalled over the weekend, when troops moved back from the city and began focusing their attention on taking down protester-erected barricades on the outskirts. They reentered the city Monday.
The Defense Ministry is also announcing the creation of a “volunteer” paramilitary organization to help with attacks against protester-held cities, saying the fighters will be paid nearly $1300 a month by a “charity” calling itself Patriot to restore law and order in the region. That is dramatically more than Ukraine’s soldiers are paid, and it is widely expected the volunteers will be from the Right Sector neo-Nazi faction.