Ukraine’s parliament descended into chaos after a politician took issue with criticism of Russia over the MH17 plane crash and accused Kyiv of waging war on Ukrainian people.
The comments came from Mykola Levchenko, from the Party of Regions of former president Viktor Yanukovych. He was pushed off the rostrum by Ihor Miroshychenko of the far-right Svoboda party, and a melee ensued.
The elected deputies did manage to approve a presidential decree calling up more military reserves to serve in the east, where fighting with pro-Russian rebels has continued.
The authorities in Kyiv say several towns including Severodonetsk, with a population of 100,000, have been retaken by government forces after being in separatist hands.
In Donetsk civilians have been reported killed in shelling, and desperate people have been fleeing after more clashes.
“I never thought the Ukrainian authorities would kill us Ukrainians,” said one woman named as Larisa, speaking from a residential area in the city’s northwest.
With explosions happening every few minutes, fire raged after an old factory was hit.
Ukrainian troops have forced pro-Russian rebels back to their two main strongholds of Donetsk and Luhansk, where troops are said by one security official in Kyiv to be closing in.