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The battle for Donetsk airport throughout Monday and early Tuesday proved costly for the separatists with heavy loss of life. Inside one morgue dozens of fallen rebel fighters bodies were piled high.

Denis Pushilin, the self-declared leader of the Donetsk People’s Republic said as many as 50 pro-Russian separatists and about the same number of civilians had been killed in the intense but ultimately unsuccessful fight to hold onto the international air hub.

Another unconfirmed report claimed a rocket-propelled grenade had hit a truck carrying wounded rebels, killing 35.

Away from the airport , a massive fire tore through the ice hockey arena in Donetsk.

Local media alleged the blaze was deliberately started by an armed group after they broke into the stadium. There were no reports of any casualties.

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