MOSCOW, May 7 (RIA Novosti) – Several supporters of the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) have been poisoned with gas after they entered the city council building in Ukraine’s southeastern port of Mariupol, local news portal 0629.com.ua reported Wednesday.
“After the cordon was removed from the Mariupol city council … the representatives of the DPR entered the building. They had been warned it was dangerous. Inside, the activists breathed in the gas that law enforcement officers had used when liberating the building at night. Several people got sick,” the report said.
Five ambulance cars arrived at the scene, and doctors attended to the affected activists.
Meanwhile, a pro-federalization demonstration continued by the mayor’s office with five DPR and Russian flags raised on top of the building.
The Ukrainian Ministry of Internal Affairs said earlier that the Mariupol police had taken the city council building from the demonstrators, lifted a barricade of the city and detained several people.
Ukrainian forces have raised roadblocks and posted armored vehicles at all city exits, local activists told RIA Novosti. On Tuesday, one activist died and three were injured when the only federalist roadblock was attacked.
Deadly clashes between pro-federalization supporters and Ukrainian security forces have raged across the country’s east and south, killing dozens and injuring hundreds, after Ukrainian authorities announced the launch of special operation to crack down on the protesters with military force.
Russia has repeatedly condemned Kiev’s military operation against the restive regions and urged an immediate withdrawal of Ukrainian troops, as well as the start of comprehensive national dialogue to de-escalate the situation in the crisis-hit country.