Rocket attacks in the east marked the beginning of 2015 for Ukraine. Twelve civilians were killed and 11 were wounded by a missile fired by Russian-backed militants that hit a bus in the town of Volnovakha, 35 kilometers southwest of Donetsk, on January 13. President Petro Poroshenko stated: “This is a disaster and a tragedy for Ukraine. This is more evidence after the MH17 plane, after the many civilian casualties – it is a crime that terrorists from the so-called DNR and LNR [Donetsk and Luhansk peoples’ republics] have severely violated my peace plan, which was approved and supported by the European Council and the European Union.”
It was yet more evidence also that the ceasefire agreed to in Minsk in September of 2014 was being violated almost daily. As of the beginning of 2015, it was noted that over 4,700 people had been killed and more than 10,000 injured in the fighting in Ukraine’s east that began in April 2014.