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Russian military convoy that entered Ukraine partially destroyed

A Russian military convoy that illegally entered eastern Ukraine under cover of darkness on Thursday came under fire almost immediately after crossing the border, the Ukrainian government revealed Friday.
By JC Finley Follow @JC_Finley Contact the Author   |   Aug. 15, 2014 at 1:06 PM
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KIEV, Ukraine, Aug. 15 (UPI) -- The Ukrainian government announced Friday that a Russian military convoy that illegally entered eastern Ukraine under cover of darkness on Thursday came under fire almost as soon as it entered Ukrainian territory.

The National Security and Defense Council confirmed that "a part of the column does not exist now," but did not elaborate on the extent to which the convoy was destroyed.

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko discussed the situation with British Prime Minister David Cameron during a phone call on Friday, telling Cameron that the Ukrainian military had destroyed the Russian vehicles.

Eyewitnesses reported that the military convoy seen crossing into Ukraine Thursday evening was comprised of 23 armored personnel carriers, fuel trucks and unspecified logistics vehicles. All reportedly had Russian military license plates.

The Russian military crossed into Ukraine as another Russian convoy of more than 200 Russian trucks Moscow says contains humanitarian aid for embattled eastern Ukraine arrived Thursday. Unlike the military convoy, the aid convoy stopped short of the border so that International Committee of the Red Cross personnel could verify the cargo's contents.

German Foreign Minister Franke-Walter Steinmeier said Friday "What we still don't know is whether this was a relatively, unfortunately, normal nightly course of events at the Russian-Ukrainian border, or if it had some sort of connection with the humanitarian convoy."

Steinmeier, who has spoke with representatives from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, reported, "The OSCE view initially leaned to there being no close connection."

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