Moscow demands explanation from Kiev authorities after a Russian checkpoint on the border between two counties came under shelling on Friday, Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
On Friday, the Russian checkpoint of Novoshakhtinsk in Rostov region was shelled by mortars, the Russia’s Border Service said. The rounds came from the Ukrainian side. A Russian customs service employee was seriously injured in the fire.
The shelling occurred as Lugansk self-defense forces clashed with Ukrainian military joined by the National Guard, who launched mortar fire that in the end hit the checkpoint, said spokesman of the Border Service in the Rostov Region, Vasily Malayev.
While the main target of the shelling was the Ukrainian border checkpoint Dolzhansky, controlled by the militia, several mortars hit Russia’s territory, he added.
The video that was posted on Youtube shows the refugee camp near Novoshakhtinsk in Rostov region. One can hear the shelling in the beginning and in the end of the video.
The Russian checkpoint was severely damaged, especially its engineer constructions and communication lines, Malayev said.
“Our employee was injured and has been transported to the hospital of Novoshakhtinsk. His condition is evaluated as rather serious,” said the Custom’s Service.
Russia’s Investigative Committee has launched a criminal investigation into the attempted murder of citizens by shelling Russian territory.
Following the incident, the Russian Foreign Ministry filed a protest note to Kiev demanding an immediate explanation and investigation into the shelling.
“It is a direct provocation, which aims to prevent the implementation of the Geneva agreement on de-escalation of the Ukrainian conflict,” the ministry said.
The Ukrainian Ministry of Defense refuted statements the Ukrainian army shelled a Russian checkpoint.
“Due to proximity to the state border with Russia, the Ukrainian military does not fire from artillery or mortars," the statement on its website read.