As the conflict in the Donbass region of East Ukraine smolders with seemingly a handful of soldiers on both sides being killed every week by artillery or sniper fire, the fight more and more seems to be spilling out of Donetsk and Luhansk, and into Kyiv proper. Intelligence services on both sides have been active in murdering officials deemed integral to the war effort or dangerous to one side’s agenda.
Russian defectors have been shot in plain sight in the capital’s streets, journalists have been murdered by car bombs, OECD monitors have been murdered by car bombs in the East, and now an high level Ukrainian intelligence officer was killed by a car bomb this morning in downtown Kyiv.
“As a result of (the explosion) a member of the defense ministry’s main intelligence department, Colonel Maksim Shapoval, was killed,” the defense ministry said in a statement, reports Reuters. The defense ministry called the incident a “terrorist act.” Kyiv considers the operation in the east against pro-Russian rebels as an “anti-terrorist operation.”
Today, Western officials expressed some hope that the conflict in East Ukraine can be solved by further negotiations in Minsk. However, to date, the previous peace agreements negotiated in the Belarusian capital have not been implemented.
The hot war in Donbass is not getting less intense. It is getting more violent. Without further efforts to solve this conflict which has claimed more than 10,000 lives, the fight may grow into a conflagration neither Europe, Moscow or the U.S. can control.
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