Russia launches probe into killing of 5-year-old by Ukrainian government forces

Russia to probe the death of a five-year-old child allegedly killed by Ukrainian government forces, Moscow announced on Monday, as tensions rose in Ukraine’s conflict-stricken east.

Russian Investigative Committee, which inspects major crimes, said the Ukrainian army had breached a ceasefire deal on Friday and attacked civilian infrastructure in Oleksandrivske using heavy armament and drones.

The village lies in the self-proclaimed breakaway Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR).

The boy was allegedly killed on Saturday by an explosive device dropped via drone by Ukrainian troops, Russia’s Tass News agency reported.

As a result of an explosion, the five-year-old child was killed while his 66-year-old grandmother was injured, the Investigative Committee said in a statement.

In another incident, a 46-year-old resident of the village of Mykolaivka in the separatist-held self-proclaimed Lugansk People’s Republic was wounded in an explosion, investigators said.

The allegations come amid rise of an escalation in the long-simmering conflict in Ukraine’s eastern Donetsk and Lugansk regions.

Ukrainian government troops have battled Russian-backed separatists in the area since 2014, when Moscow annexed the Crimean peninsula after an uprising that toppled Ukraine’s Kremlin-friendly President Viktor Yanukovych.