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Kyiv is criticised for granting self-rule to rebel-held areas

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Kyiv is criticised for granting self-rule to rebel-held areas

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A vote by Ukrainian MPs to grant self-rule to parts of two eastern regions has drawn criticism from both sides.

The leaders of two parties – former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko and her counterpart in nationalist Svoboda – called it a ‘capitulation’.

Separatist rebels denounced it as ‘unacceptable’, falling short of independence.

The so-called ‘special status’ gives certain legal and economic freedoms lasting three years and applies to only those areas under rebel control.

While politics was being played out in the capital,
in Donetsk in the east, the shaky ceasefire came under further strain.

One women died after a mortar shell struck a bus and another three people were reported killed in the shelling of a service station.

Europe’s humanitarian and democracy watchdog the OSCE says both sides are violating the truce.