On August 31, 2018, Alexander Zakharchenko, President of the People’s Republic of Donetsk (or Malorossia), was killed in a bomb attack. Finance Minister Alexander Timofeyev and ten other people were injured.
The police managed to identify the perpetrators and a manhunt was opened. The killers allegedly work for the Ukrainian Security Service.
Alexander Zakharchnenko was a signatory to the Minsk II agreement that Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko refuses to implement.
Three days of mourning were decreed in Donestsk by the Council of Ministers.
The Russian Federation immediately called for an international inquiry. President Vladimir Putin offered his condolences to the family of the deceased and the people of Donestk. Minister of Foreign Affairs, Sergey Lavrov, canceled all negotiations in the Normandy format (Germany, France, Russia and Ukraine).
The People’s Republic of Donetsk is recognized only by South Ossetia. President Anatoly Bibilov called the killing an act of "state terrorism".