Leader of self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic killed in E. Ukraine blast

Scene of Ukraine Donetsk explosion

An occasional passerby could be seen laying flowers at the site of a badly-damaged cafe on September 1 in the separatist-held Ukrainian city of Donetsk, where a blast is said to have killed Aleksandr Zakharchenko, the leader of the Russia-backed breakaway entity in the region. The improvised explosive device was planted inside the café, near the entrance.

He and several others, including his press secretary and armed guards, were ambushed while travelling in a rebel-controlled area.

But an anonymous source told Interfax news agency that DPR's finance minister, Alexander Timofeev.

Russia's Foreign Ministry said on Friday it had every reason to believe Kiev was responsible for his death, RIA news agency said.

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The leader of Ukrainian separatists in the east Alexander Zakharchenko, who died in an explosion in the center of rebel hub Donetsk, is the latest rebel official to be slain in a series of apparent murders.

Zakharchenko's spokeswoman Alena Alekseeva said the DPR police established that the bomb had been set off on orders by the Ukrainian Security Service (SBU).

The blast left two people dead and nine injured, including DPR minister of taxes and duties, Alexander Timofeyev, and the head of a local youth organization, Natalya Volkova.

The leaders of Russian Federation and Ukraine, alongside Germany and France, signed a ceasefire in Minsk, Belarus in 2015 to end the conflict in which more than 10,000 people have died and more than 1.5 million have been displaced by violence.

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The 36-year-old headed the Somali battalion but also became a media personality after featuring in a series of YouTube videos together with Arseny Pavlov, another separatist fighter nicknamed "Motorola".

She said the Kiev "party of war" was "violating its pledges about peace and has decided on a bloodbath".

And Russia's speaker of Parliament suggested that because the victim, Alexander Zakharchenko, was one of the parties who signed a peace agreement with Ukraine called Minsk II, that pact was no longer valid. Russian Federation denied it sent arms and troops to support the separatists.

The rear fuselage of flight MH17 at the crash site outside the village of Grabovka in the self proclaimed Donetsk Republic, Ukraine, in July 2014.

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The rebellion in the south-east regions of Donetsk and Luhansk - known collectively as the Donbass - arose after pro-Russian Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych left office in February 2014 amid mass protests.

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