Donetsk mourns politician killed in Ukrainian attack
Maria Pirogova, a 29-year-old volunteer and MP in the local people’s council, was killed in the city of Donetsk on Tuesday as the result of artillery shelling and rocket attacks by the Ukrainian military. A statement on her death was released by the acting head of the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR), Denis Pushilin.
Pirogova is among at least six civilians killed across the city that day.
The lawmaker’s death was an “enormous loss for all of us,” Pushilin said, extending his condolences to Maria’s family and friends.
“In 2014, when she was only 21 years old, she began to help people. She gathered things, delivered them herself to those in need, and was not afraid to go to the most dangerous places to help others,” Pushilin wrote on his Telegram channel, praising the late politician as the “epitome of kindness” with an exceptional “talent at doing good.”
Pirogova was killed as Kiev’s forces subjected Donetsk to a new round of rocket and artillery attacks, targeting multiple locations across the city. According to the city’s mayor, Aleksey Kulemzin, Ukrainian troops hit a business center, a market, the Donbass arena, a sports complex, several shopping centers, a bus station, a cathedral, the local prosecutor’s office, and multiple residential buildings. The attacks left at least six civilians dead and several wounded.
Donetsk has been subjected to heavy artillery and missile attacks by Ukrainian forces on an almost daily basis since Russia launched its military operation in late February. Since 2014, when the Donbass conflict broke out in the aftermath of the Maidan coup in Kiev, the city has endured years of low-intensity fighting and sporadic shelling by the Ukrainian military.
Earlier this year, the DPR and the Lugansk People’s Republic (LPR), as well as Kherson and Zaporozhye Regions, formally joined Russia following overwhelming support in local referendums.