A handout picture taken and released by the Ukrainian prime minister’s press service in Kiev on Wednesday shows a policeman putting handcuffs on Sergiy Bochkovsky (legft), director of Ukraine’s emergency services ministry. Mr Bochkovsky was suspected of buying fuel at an artificially high price, said a representative of the interior ministry. Photograph: Andrew Kravchenko/AFP/Getty Images

Two officials arrested and handcuffed in front of TV cameras during cabinet meeting

Singer Larisa Dolina and Vladimir Putin sing the Russian national anthem during a concert to mark the Crimea-Russia reunification in Moscow yesterday. Photograph: Maxim Shipenkov/EPA

Celebrations mark year since annexation, amid criticism from Ukraine and West

A woman holds a Russian flag near the monument to sunken ships as Crimeans celebrated the first anniversary of the referendum on Monday in Sevastopol, Crimea. Photograph: Alexander Aksakov/Getty Images

EU concerned at pressure on critics of Moscow’s annexation of Black Sea peninsula

Safinar Dzhemilev, at home in Bakhchisarai, Crimea. Russia has banned her husband, a veteran Tatar leader, from entering the annexed region and he now lives in Kiev. Photograph: Daniel McLaughlin

After decades of exile, Crimean Tatars vow not to be driven from their homeland

 A destroyed building  after heavy fighting in the town of Uglegorsk. The United Nations found that more than 6,000 people have been killed since the war in Ukraine started last April. Photograph:  Andrew Burton/Getty Images

US and Russian officials discuss ceasefire as UN highlights ‘merciless devastation’

Adam Osmayev, English-educated Chechen commander of a Ukrainian volunteer battalion. Photograph: Daniel McLaughlin

Adam Osmayev, once arrested for alleged Putin murder plot, now leads pro-Kiev sabotage unit

A member of the Ukrainian armed forces stands guard as a convoy of Ukrainian armed forces as they pull back from the Debaltseve region, in Paraskoviyvka, eastern Ukraine, yesterday. Photograph: Gleb Garanich/Reuters

US intelligence chief expects Russian-backed militants to attack key port in spring

A tank of pro-Russian separatists on the road from Donetsk to Novoazovsk, Mariupol district, in Ukraine  on Tuesday. A ceasefire deal for the country is in limbo after international talks only highlighted disagreement over the plan. Photograph: Andrey Borodulin/AFP/Getty Images

Paris negotiations make no headway, as Britain prepares to dispatch military advisers to troubled Kiev

The wife of a dead paramedic from the National Guard of Ukraine at a mourning ceremony in the Donetsk area yesterday. Photograph: Anastasia Vlasova

Ceasefire still in doubt as clashes continue and artillery stays at frontline

Biology student Katya Bikhtiryova, on Debaltseve’s main square, was one of hundreds of residents queuing for food aid. Photograph: Daniel McLaughlin

After fierce fighting, rebels control strategic town and locals look to rebuild shattered lives

Police experts inspect the area close to a body following an explosion during a “Dignity March” in the  Ukrainian city of Kharkiv.   Photograph: Sergey Bobok/AFP/Getty Images

Kiev sees Russian involvement in attack as weapons still flow to insurgents

Ukrainians in Independence Square in Kiev yesterday for the commemoration ceremony for Maidan activists who were killed during anti-government protests in 2014. Photograph: EPA/Roman Pilipey

Russia rejects Kiev’s claims and warns of ‘appropriate response’ to military threat

A pro-Russian separatist feeds a cat in the rebel-held town of Uglegorsk, not far from Debaltseve. Photograph: Alexander Ermochenko/EPA

Russia and rebels reject Kiev’s call for EU monitoring role in eastern regions

Ukrainian priests lead a commemoration ceremony  for Maidan activists or “Heroes of the Heavenly Hundred”  killed  during anti-government protests in Kiev this time last year. Photograph: Roman Pilipey/EPA

Riot officers and other units widely blamed for killing dozens of protesters in Kiev

A wounded Ukrainian soldier looks through a windows as he arrives to a hospital in Artemivsk. Photograph: Gleb Garanich/Reuters

Exhausted troops cast doubt on claim of ‘planned retreat’ from encircled town

Ukrainian servicemen in retreat from the area around Debaltseve, in eastern Ukraine on Wednesday after a fierce assault by Russian-backed separatists which the EU said violated a crumbling ceasefire. Photograph: Gleb Garanich/Reuters

Loss of Debaltzeve to rebels may breathe life into embattled ceasefire plan

A pro-Russian rebel carries ammunition  near the eastern Ukrainian city of Debaltseve. The loss of the city, a major road and rail junction between the rebel-held cities of Donetsk and Luhansk, would be a severe blow to Kiev’s pro-western leaders. Photograph: Vasily Maximov/AFP/Getty

Kremlin leader blames Kiev for conflict, urges it to seek peace with separatists

Pro-Russian separatists attend the funeral of several comrades at a cemetery in Donetsk on Monday. A two-day-old truce was under threat with fighting unabated. Photograph: AFP/Getty Images

Ceasefire on verge of collapse as fierce exchanges continue at strategic flashpoints

Ukrainian soldiers on the road leading to the embattled town of Debaltseve. Photograph: Brendan Hoffman/Getty Images

Kiev accuses rebel forces of continuing to attack loyalist forces around area of Debaltseve

Ukrainian servicemen play football on a road at Svitlodarsk, approaching Debaltseve. Photograph: Volodymyr Shuvayev/AFP/Getty Images

Fighting continues at key transport hub as ceasefire begins

A woman walks past a damaged building in the town of Vuhlehirsk near Donetsk, Ukraine on Saturday. Photograph: Reuters

Kiev leader warns artillery withdrawal may not start as planned

A recently mobilized Ukrainian serviceman aims his rifle during a military training on the Desna shooting range in Ukraine. Photograph: Sergey Dolzhenko/EPA

Rocket fire kills soldiers and civilians, a day after Ukrainian, Russian, German and French leaders agree terms for ceasefire

Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko in a lift  as he leaves the Ukrainian peace negotiations in Minsk, Belarus:  The White House has called the truce deal “potentially significant”, but urged Moscow to withdraw troops and armour and give Ukraine control over its own border.  Photograph: Tatyana Zenkovich/EPA

Saturday night truce agreed after marathon talks and as Kiev secures €35bn in aid

Members of the Ukrainian armed forces  on an armoured personnel carrier near Debaltseve, eastern Ukraine, on Thursday. The commander of the US army in Europe says Russia’s military is directly involved in  fighting there.  Photograph: Gleb Garanich/Reuters

Ceasefire seen as giving brief respite from war as Moscow resists Nato

Russian president Vladimir Putin shakes hands with Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko as Belarus president Alexander Lukashenko, German chancellor Angela Merkel and French president Francois Hollande look on prior the Ukrainian peace talks in Minsk.  Photograph: Andrei Stasevich/EPA

US army commander says Russia directly involved in major east Ukraine battle

Two boys being evacuated from kharki, eastern Ukraiine. In Odessa volunteers were waiting to take them to a sanatorium where they are expected to stay for at least two months

Volunteers provide vast range of services to displaced people as state struggles to cope

Belarus’ president Alexander Lukashenko (L), Russia’s president Vladimir Putin (2nd L), Ukraine’s president Petro Poroshenko (R), Germany’s chancellor Angela Merkel (C) and France’s president Francois Hollande pose for a family photo during peace talks in Minsk. Photograph: Grigory Dukor /Reuters

Key sticking points include future status of separatist-held areas and size of proposed buffer zone

Claim and counterclaim: Kiev accuses Russian-backed rebels of lethal rocket strike

Journalists waiting for a meeting of the four-way summit on eastern Ukraine in Minsk, Belarus, on Tuesday. Photograph: Reuters/Vasily Fedosenko

Russia says US weapons supply to Kiev will only deepen bloodshed

A woman carries a bag of humanitarian aid from a delivery point in the Ukrainian forces-controlled town of Debaltseve in the Donetsk region. Photograph: Maxim Shemetov/Reuters

Ukraine has many historical reasons to mistrust both East and West when it comes to deciding its fate

An elderly Ukrainian man is helped by a Ukrainian army soldier and a citizen during a evacuation of civilians from Debaltseve in the Donetsk region. Photograph: AFP Photo / Manu Brabomanu Brabo

Nato states mull arms supplies to help Ukraine subdue Russian-backed rebels

German chancellor Angela Merkel  and Hungarian prime minister Viktor Orban in Budapest, Hungary: “I’m firmly convinced that this conflict cannot be solved by military means,” Dr Merkel said. Photograph: Carsten Koall/Getty Images

Disagreement over philosophy of a Budapest government critics call anti-democratic

Red Square, Moscow: Russian president Vladimir Putin and his allies are not expecting Russians to survive on patriotism alone. Photograph: Maxim Shemetov/Reuters

As standoff over Ukraine intensified last year, so did capital flight from Russia

Paratrooper Vadim Polyantsa (25) was hit by shrapnel in his arm and neck as his unit stormed a rebel checkpoint. His rebuilt upper arm will take months to heal. Photograph: Daniel McLaughlin

Ukraine’s ‘cyborgs’ say they won’t stop in the fight against pro-Russian rebels

Russian president Vladimir Putin:  “We talk about ‘the Ukrainian army, the Ukrainian army’, but who is really fighting there?” Photograph: Mikhail Klimentyev/Ria Novosti /Kremlin Pool/EPA

Kremlin tells West to drop threat of more sanctions and increase pressure on Kiev

A bus passes by a memorial to those killed when a rocket struck a bus stop in Donetsk. Photograph: Brendan Hoffman/The New York Times

Rocket strikes by rebels backed by Moscow claim 30 civilian lives

Pro-Russian rebels unload the body of a slain colleague at a hospital in Donetsk, Ukraine yesterday. Photograhp: Brendan Hoffman/The New York Times

Putin says Ukraine’s ‘criminal’ push in the east prompted latest surge in bloodshed

A kindergarten which was shelled in Debaltseve, Donetsk area in Ukraine. Diplomats from Russia, Ukraine, France and Germany met this week to thrash out a tentative dividing line from which the warring sides would pull back their heavy weapons. Photograph: Anastasia Vlasova/EPA

Separatists in east Ukraine warn they intend to continue advances and take more territory

Captive Ukrainian soldiers kneel as the leader of the self-declared Donetsk People’s Republic Alexander Zakharchenko (left) stands   at a bus stop where 13 people were killed when a  bus was shelled.   Photograph: Aleksander Gayuk/AFP/Getty Images

Killing continues despite foreign ministers’ claims to have made some progress in talks

 Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov (left)  with German foreign minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier upon Mr Lavrov’s arrival to meet  Ukrainian foreign minister Pavlo Klimkin and French foreign minister Laurent Fabius to discuss the ongoing conflict in eastern Ukraine at Villa Borsig, Berlin, Germany,  on January 21st, 2015. Photograph Sean Gallup/Getty Images

Moscow rejects allegations ahead of key foreign ministers’ meeting

Ukraine’s president, Petro Poroshenko, looks on during the Crystal Award ceremony ahead of the opening of the 45th annual meeting of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, on Tuesday.  Photograph: Jean-Christophe Bott/EPA

Kiev says Russian forces are fighting alongside rebels and troops by Ukraine border

A man rides a Ukrainian tanks past a damaged vehicle in the village of Tonenke, 5km from  Donetsk airport.  Photograph: Oleksandr Stashevskiy/AFP/Getty Images

Fighting continues as Kiev claims fresh Russian forces have crossed the border

Female Ukrainian army cadets hold placards reading “I am Volnovakha” in French and Ukrainian during a march on Independence Square in Kiev yesterday to pay tribute to the 13 passengers of a bus killed after a shelling by pro-Russian separatists in small eastern Ukrainian ciry of Volnovakha. Photograph: Sergei Supinsky/AFP/Getty Images

Fears grow over further escalation as separatists appeal for international help

Smoke rising this week over the new terminal of Donetsk airport in Donetsk, eastern Ukraine. Photograph: AP Photo/Mstyslav Chernov

World Health Organisation warns of growing humanitarian crisis in disputed regions

The bus in which 10 people were killed after a rocket attack blamed by the  the government  on Russian-backed rebels. Photograph: Getty Images

Crisis summit postponed due to worsening situation in east of country

A pro-Russian rebel guards the road near  Donetsk airport in eastern Ukraine. Ukrainian soldiers took up duties  at the airport on Tuesday. It  has been the scene of some of the fiercest fighting in eastern Ukraine. Photograph: Mstyslav Chernov/AP

Planned January 15th talks in doubt as Kiev seeks urgent financial aid

Ukraine-born dancer Svetlana Zakharova with the Bolshoi ballet during a rehearsal. The ballerina was among hundreds of cultural figures in Russia who signed a letter to “strongly declare support for the position of the Russian president on Ukraine and Crimea”. Photograph: Natalia Kolesnikova/AFP/Getty Images

War, politics and propaganda affect TV, film, music and now ballet stars

Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks at a concert honouring past and present security service staff at the State Kremlin Palace in Moscow, December 20th, 2014. Photograph: Reuters/Alexei Druzhinin/RIA Novosti/Kremlin

Economic hardship likely to feed stronger bunker mentality in Russia’s leadership

A general view of Lithuanian capital Vilnius. Latvia and Lithuania favour a tough response to Russia’s annexation of Crimea and support for separatists in eastern Ukraine. Photograph: Ints Kalnins/Reuters

New year sees Latvia take on EU presidency and Lithuania adopt the euro

Petro Poroshenko: Ukraine’s president warns he will not hesitate to impose martial law ‘if any offensive operations begin at the line of contact’. Photograph:  Sergey Dolzhenko/EPA

Petro Poroshenko to meet Russian, German and French leaders in bid to end ceasefire

A boy thows an egg at an image of Vladimir Putin in Kiev in May. Photographs: Sergey Gapon/AFP/Getty

Twenty-five years after the Berlin Wall fell and communist regimes collapsed across central Europe, Ukraine is being torn apart (...)

Yulia Zubrova (left) works with other volunteers to make a camouflage net for a Ukrainian army tank. Photograph: Daniel McLaughlin

Volunteers often quicker than the state to fund, buy, make and deliver kit to eastern front-line

Members of the Ukrainian delegation (left) and members of a Belarussian delegation during talks in Kiev, Ukraine. Photograph: Mykola Lazarenko/EPA

Russian-backed separatist rebels accuse Kiev of sabotaging the halting peace process

Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko in the Polish parliament in Warsaw yesterday. New peace talks involving Russia, Ukraine and the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe may be held in the Belarussian capital Minsk on Sunday. Photograph: Reuters/Slawomir Kaminski

EU and US see slight shift in Russian stance as Ukraine’s leader eyes Nato membership

Chechen activist Akhmed Alikhadzhiyev at a Kiev rally he helped organise for solidarity between Ukraine and Chechnya. Photograph: Daniel McLaughlin

Kremlin opponents based in Ukraine are planning how they can to topple Putin

Repair men work to repair the electricity network after what locals say was a night of shelling in Donetsk in eastern Ukraine. Photograph: Maxim Shemetov/Reuters

Russia restarts gas supplies to Ukraine and chides Germany over criticism

Russian president Vladamir Putin has promised an amnesty for capital repatriated to the country, saying Russians who choose to bring money back will face no questions over how they earned it. Photograph: Alexey Druginyn/Ria Novosti/EPA

Ukrainian leader says ceasefire with eastern rebels could start on December 9th

Ministers of the new government of Ukraine after they were voted in during a session of arliament in Kievon Tuesday. The government includes three foreign nationals who were given Ukrainian citizenship to allow them to take their posts.  Photograph: Roman Pilpey/EPA

EU council president Donald Tusk pledges support for Ukraine’s new reformist cabinet

Moldovan students from Craiova city in Romania display EU-colored umbrellas and placards while arriving in Bucharest before voting in Moldova’s parliamentary elections at their country embassy.  Photograph: Robert Ghement/EPA

Pro-Russia party wins, but West-leaning parties best placed to form coalition

Moldova’s Communist Party leader, Vladimir Voronin, favours stronger ties with Russia. Photograph: Dumitru Doru/EPA

Pro-Russian Patria party barred over funding ahead of Sunday’s vote

Ukrainians holding a giant flag made of national, Crimean Tatars and Crimean flags in Kiev on March 23rd last. Ukraine’s new leaders are viewed with suspicion by those who question their appetite for radical change. Photograph: Sergey Dolzhenko/EPA

Government needed quickly to face Russian-backed insurgency and dying economy

Abkhazia’s separatist president Raul Khadzhimba and Russia’s leader Vladimir Putin    during the   ceremony in which they signed a ‘strategic partnership’ pact in Sochi on Monday. The EU, US and Nato  joined Georgia in denouncing the pact. Photograph: Alexey Druginyn/EPA/RIA Novosti

Moscow’s far-reaching deal with Abkhazia comes months after Crimea seized from Ukraine

Allies: former Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovich  greets Vladimir Putin in 2012. Photograph: Sergey Ponomarev/AFP/Getty

From the first protest on Independence Square – aka Maidan – in November 2013 to Russia’s massing of troops this month on its bord(...)

City in flames: Ukrainian anti-government protesters throw Molotov cocktails during clashes with riot police in Kiev in January. Photograph: Dmitry Serebryakov/AFP/Getty
A year in Ukraine

Twelve months ago a revolution was sparked in Kiev and Ukraine’s identity was recast. On its anniversary it’s still not clear who (...)

US vice-president Joe Biden has visited Kiev on the anniversary of the start of huge anti-corruption and pro-western protests, triggered by the decision of Ukraine’s then leaders to reject a landmark trade and political deal with the European Union. Photograph: Sergey Dolzhenko/EPA

US and Nato denounce Russia as Ukraine marks uprising anniversary

Demonstrators show symbolic red cards to Czech president Milos Zeman during a protest rally in Prague.  Photograph: Reuters

Big rallies in Hungary and Czech Republic bemoan leaders’ soft stance on Russia

Klaus Iohannis, leader of Romania’s center-right Liberals and mayor of  Sibiu: his  enduring popularity and apparent incorruptibility has made him a figure of some curiosity. Photograph: Raed Krishan/AP

Lutheran, ethnic-German outsider beats PM Ponta with pledge to cleanse a corrupt system

German chancellor Angela Merkel and Australian prime minister Tony Abbott aboard a boat in front of Sydney Opera House yesterday. Photograph: Reuters/Guido Bergmann

Russian president skips leaders’ lunch after sharp criticism over Ukraine

A girl lights a candle during Latvian Freedom Fighters’ Remembrance Day, or Lacplesis Day, to commemorate those who fought in the 1919 Latvian War of Independence, near Riga castle on November 11th. In Latvia, Russia’s increased military activity is seen as an echo of the cold war. Photograph: Ints Kalnins/Reuters

Nato sees sharp rise in warplanes and ships approaching Baltic states’ territory

Ukrainian defence minister Stepan Poltorak: “The main thing is to be prepared. If there is action, there will be a reaction.” Photograph: Valentyn Ogirenko/Reuters

Russian ‘occupiers’ shooting at Ukrainian positions, says Kiev spokesman

An exchange office worker  in central Kiev yesterday. Donetsk rebels said they may switch to a dual-currency system involving Ukraine’s hryvnia and the Russian rouble. Photograph: Gleb Garanich/Reuters

Security study warns of potentially ‘catastrophic’ Nato-Russia stand-off

Pro-Russian rebel leader Alexander Zakharchenko, left: the fierce struggle for Donetsk airport has continued almost unabated. Photograph: Dmitry Lovetsky/AP

Kiev says up to 200 militants killed at airport

Yevgeny Denisenko (70), head of the Donetsk and Opera and Ballet Theatre. He took the post last month after the theatre’s previous general director died suddenly. Photograph: Daniel McLaughlin

Opera and ballet forge on despite death of a director, destruction of sets and no pay

Kirill (11), one of those injured in the sports field of Kuibyshevskya school, with his father at a hospital in Donetsk yesterday. Photograph: alexander Ermochenko/EPA

Kiev tightens security at ‘border’ with separatist-held areas

Igor Plotnitsky arriving for his inauguration as head of the self-proclaimed Luhansk People’s Republic in Luhansk, Ukraine, on Tuesday. The Ukrainian government in Kiev, the EU and the United States have all called declared as illegal the elections last weekend in rebel-held regions of eastern Ukraine. Photograph: Yuriy Streltsov/ EPA

Two teenagers killed as both sides accuse each other of wrecking ceasefire deal

Alexander Zakharchenko  arrives for his inauguration as the new head of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic yesterday. Photograph: Alexander Ermochenko/EPA

EU and Nato issue warnings as Russian-backed militants inaugurate new leaders

Ballots are counted after elections in Donetsk on Sunday. Ukraine’s president, Petro Poroshenko, called the ballot “a horrible event that has nothing in common with free will”. Photograph: Alexander Ermochenko/EPA

Local warlords not controlled by separatist leaders in Donetsk and Luhansk

A member of a local electoral commission takes part in the preparations for this weekend’s election, with stickers displaying symbols of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic. Photograph: Maxim Zmeyev/Reuters

EU, Germany and France condemn Ukraine separatists’ Russian-backed vote

Coal miners leaving a Donetsk mine in June following a shift. Work has ceased in the Donbas coalmining region due to the militants’ struggle against Kiev authorities. Photograph: Viktor Drachev/Getty Images

Shells and bullets rain down on Oktyabrskaya coal mine in Ukraine

Irina Peredery (50, left) and Natalya Golovina (61) outside the entrance to the unlit, unheated bomb shelter where they spend nights with more than a dozen other people. Photograph: Daniel McLaughlin

Little help is being given, by rebels or by Kiev, to those driven from homes

Ukrainian cadets after assembling yesterday by a monument for victims of the Nazi massacre in Babiy Yar in Kiev. The country is marking the 70th anniversary of liberation from the Nazis. Photograph: Sergey Dolzhenko

Separatists in Donetsk and Luhansk to hold elections in ‘people’s republics’

Ukrainian servicemen and a woman hold their ballots during a parliamentary election at a polling station in Kiev. Ukrainians voted yesterday in an election that is expected to strengthen President Petro Poroshenko’s mandate to end a separatist conflict in the east of the country. Photograph: Reuters

Russia bemoans ‘violations’ and fears ‘chauvinist forces’ will fuel more bloodshed

An elderly Ukrainian woman reads her ballot papers during the elections, in the Krenichi village, about 40km from Kiev. Photograph: Tatyana Zenkovich

Despite anti-Russian shift, party of ex-Yanukovich allies is set to win seats

Runners: election posters in Kiev. Photograph: Gleb Garanich/Reuters

The country’s elections take place this weekend. With Crimea, annexed by Russia in March, excluded from the vote, the balance of p(...)

Ukraine’s president Petro Poroshenko holds a weapon at PA Yuzhmash aerospace enterprise in Dnipropetrovsk during the week. He has been urged to dismiss Ihor Kolomoisky. Photograph: Mykhailo Markiv/EPA

As people prepare for an election, Ihor Kolomoisky is the focus of allegations

Yulia Tymoshenko: the fiercely competitive former prime minister of Ukraine received only 13 per cent of the vote in May presidential elections. Photograph: Burak Akbulut/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Fatherland party in battle to take 5% of votes needed to enter parliament, polls show

Millionaire Vadim Rabinovich, a leading member of new Ukrainian coalition Opposition Bloc, which comprises many former allies of ousted president Viktor Yanukovich, in his office in Kiev. Photograph: Daniel McLaughlin

Revolution, war and the tilt to the west have left Yanukovich’s former allies reeling

Ukrainian nationalists march during a rally in Kiev held to mark the 72nd anniversary of the founding of the Ukrainian Insurgent Army. Photograph: Sergey Dolzhenko/EPA

Volunteer spirit has spawned would-be partisan cells

Russian president Vladimir Putin after the ASEM summit of European and Asian leaders in Milan yesterday. Photograph: Vasily Maximov/AP

Putin more positive than Poroshenko in assessment of gas deal

Russian president Vladimir Putin (centre) and Serbian president Tomislav Nikolic (second right) attend a military parade to mark 70 years since the city’s liberation by the Red Army in Belgrade yesterday.  Serbia feted Mr  Putin with troops, tanks and fighter-jets. Photograph:  Marko Djurica/Reuters

Germany says Russia must bolster shaky ceasefire

Mikheil Saakashvili  is widely blamed for starting Georgia’s brief but disastrous war with Russia in 2008. Photograph: Irakli Gedenidze/Reuters

Prosecutors claim former president misspent state funds and muzzled opposition

Fire-fighters work on a vehicle hit by shelling near Donetsk  airport yesterday. Photograph: Shamil Zhumatov/Reuters

Drones to be used to monitor east Ukraine as fighting rages on at Donetsk airport

The family home of Tarkhan Batirashvili/Abu Omar al-Shishani in the village of Birkiani. He hasn’t been seen in the Pankisi Gorge since being released from jail and going to Turkey in 2012, and is now understood to be the leader of a radical group fighting in Syria. Photograph: Daniel McLaughlin

For young men in impoverished region, jihad can offer a tempting escape from a grim life

A pro-Russian militiant holds a placard reading “ Kolomoisky must die!” during the attack of a branch of Privatbank in the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk in April. Photograph:  Alexander Khudoteply/AFP/Getty Images

Blue and yellow of Ukraine flies proudly from cars and buildings in Dnipropetrovsk

Friends and relatives reunite with soldiers of the Ukrainian volunteer special police battalion ‘Azov’ after they returned following their turn of deployment in eastern Ukraine, near the St Sophia Cathedral in Kiev. Nato has reportedly started delivering weapons to Kiev’s military as it battles Russian-backed separatists. Photograph: Sergey Dolzhenko/EPA

Six people were killed and 15 injured in rebel-held Donetsk, says Kiev

A destroyed military truck in Ilovaisk, a town that  has endured weeks of heavy fighting. Photograph: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

The Russian army stands accused of killing hundreds of Ukrainian fighters

Russian president Vladimir Putin in Moscow yesterday. He said Russia would “be forced – absolutely forced – to take appropriate measures in response” to plans to ramp up Nato in eastern Europe. Photograph: Alexei Druzhinin/Reuters

Russia tests new missile as Ukraine says most of its troops have left the country

A Ukrainian soldier heads to a frontline position on the outskirts of the strategic coastal city of Mariupol following an evening of heavy shelling by Russian-backed separatists. (Photograph:  Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Government forces and rebels blame each other for Donetsk and Mariupol attacks

Ukrainian soldiers at a checkpoint near the eastern Ukrainian city of Debalcevoyesterday. Photograph: EPA/Roman Pilipey

Tentative peace takes hold in war-weary Donetsk and Luhansk provinces

The leader of the rebel ‘Army of Novorossiya’ unit, who goes by the nom de guerre Svat (Matchmaker). Photograph: Daniel McLaughlin

Battle over Novoazovsk shows the two countries cannot live with each other

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