Ukrainian forces struck at pro-Russian separatist bases in eastern regions with air and artillery strikes on Tuesday after President Petro Poroshenko announced he would not renew a cease-fire but go on the offensive to rid Ukraine of "parasites." Within hours of Poroshenko's early morning announcement, the military went into action against rebel bases and checkpoints which has been in separatist tumult since April. The defense ministry said Ukrainian forces had launched attacks "from the air and land" which had thwarted "the terrorists' plan to significantly escalate armed confrontation." There was no immediate word on casualties.
Russian president Vladimir Putin meanwhile said Tuesday that he had European States had tried unsuccessfully to extend a cease-fire in east Ukraine, and claimed the Ukrainian leader had veered off the road to peace. "Unfortunately President Poroshenko took the decision to restart military operations and we — I mean myself and my European colleagues — could not convince him that the road to stable, strong and long-lasting peace does not lie through war," Putin told Russian ambassadors gathered in Moscow.