Separatists vote for leader in breakaway eastern Ukraine

Pro-Russian separatists will vote to set up a breakaway regional leadership in the eastern Ukraine region of Donetsk and Luhansk aiming to take their war-torn region closer to Russia and defying Kiev and the West as the big guns still boom across the territory.

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Separatists build barricades in eastern Ukraine

A pro-Russian protester stands at a barricade outside a regional government building. Credit: Reuters\Maks Levin

Pro-Russian separatists have reinforced barricades around official buildings in the eastern city of Luhansk and have asked Russian president Vladimir Putin for help after the government in Kiev warned it could use force to restore control.

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