Soldiers were wounded after a pro-Ukrainian volunteer group was ambushed in eastern Ukraine by pro-Russia separatists on Friday, a day after another attack left at least 14 soldiers killed near the same area.
Commander Semen Semenchenko said his volunteer group of pro-Ukrainian self-defense fighters were attacked near Karlivka, a village in eastern Ukraine, the BBC reported. Semenchenko said the pro-Russia separatists used automatic weapons, snipers and grenade launchers.
The attack occurred just a day after fighting broke out between Ukrainian security personnel and pro-Russia separatists in Volnovakha about 12 miles from the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk. At least 14 people were killed in that attack.
Friday’s violence broke out just two days before Ukrainians head to the polls to elect a president following the February ouster of Viktor Yanukovych, who was strongly aligned with Russia and fled to Moscow after he was deposed. It's unclear how many casualties there were from the attack.
Pro-Russia separatists have vowed to disrupt the election, especially in eastern Ukraine, where most citizens are sympathetic to Russia.
Semenchenko said he was asking help from other Ukrainian forces to deal with the pro-Russia forces surrounding eastern Ukraine.
"Exactly half our unit has been wounded. Many have lost lots of blood," he said, according to the BBC.
Also on Friday, Russia’s deputy defense minister told Reuters that Russia would be pulling back its forces deployed in areas near the Ukrainian border “within a few days.”
Anatoly Antonov said “100 percent” of the forces will be pulled back when asked if Russia would comply with the West’s urging of withdrawal from the border.
"They will see it - 100 percent ... We will leave less than nothing behind,” Antonov said.