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BELARUS, Minsk – Rebel leaders of self proclaimed independent Donetsk and Luhansk are not present for today’s peace talks. The rebels have continued their offensive in eastern Ukraine targeting key strategic towns of Debaltseve and Vuhleshirsk. Water and electricity have been cut off with rebels surrounding government soldiers in the towns. 15 civilians have been reported killed in Donetsk, with Kiev losing 12 soldiers during fighting in the last 24 hours. Rebels say they have lost 13.