Ukraine: 3 dead after Black Sea base attack

A minivan burns at the gates to a National Guard base in Mariupol, early Thursday, April 17, 2014. Three pro-Russian militants died and 13 were wounded when Ukrainian troops repelled an attack on the National Guard base in the Black Sea port of Mariupol, Ukraine's interior minister said Thursday. (AP Photo/ Nikolai Ryabchenko)
A minivan burns at the gates to a National Guard base in Mariupol, early Thursday, April 17, 2014. Three pro-Russian militants died and 13 were wounded when Ukrainian troops repelled an attack on the National Guard base in the Black Sea port of Mariupol, Ukraine's interior minister said Thursday. (AP Photo/ Nikolai Ryabchenko)

KIEV, Ukraine (AP) — Ukraine’s interior minister says three pro-Russian militants have been killed and 13 wounded after Ukrainian troops repelled an attack on a National Guard base in the Black Sea port of Mariupol in the south-east part of the country.

Interior Minister Arsen Avakov said in a statement Thursday that a crowd of around 300 men, armed with Molotov cocktails, attacked the base late Wednesday but were repelled by the National Guard and police forces. Avakov said that 63 people had been arrested as a result of the operation and that most of the attackers were disarmed.

A well-armed, Russia-backed insurgency has sowed chaos in eastern Ukraine in the past weeks. Militants have seized police stations and administrative buildings in at least ten towns in the region, including Mariupol.

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