Russia blocks UN condemnation of shelling of Ukraine city

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UNITED NATIONS (AP) — Russia blocked a Western-backed U.N. Security Council statement Saturday that would have condemned indiscriminate shelling in Ukraine's southeastern city of Mariupol that killed about 30 civilians and injured more than 90.

The blocked statement, obtained by The Associated Press, called for "an immediate de-escalation of violence," implementation of a September cease-fire and an "objective investigation" of Saturday's rocket-fire in Mariupol.

"This attack marks a significant and disturbing escalation in the level of violence in eastern Ukraine," it said.

The proposed statement noted that separatist leader Alexander Zakharchenko announced the start of an offensive against Mariupol "and condemned in the strongest terms such irresponsible announcements."

Russia's U.N. Mission said in a statement that there was no agreement because Britain insisted on condemnation of separatist "self-defense forces" who are backed by Russia. It said Western council members have never condemned any statements or actions by Ukraine's government.

The members of the Security Council are currently on a trip to Haiti.

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