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KIEV (Reuters) - Three Ukrainian soldiers died and nine were wounded during a training accident on Friday morning, the Ukrainian military said in a statement.

The soldiers were killed by a suspected mortar explosion during tactical exercises, the statement said, adding that there would be an official investigation.

The accident happened in western Ukraine. The country is fighting a Russian-backed separatist insurgency in eastern Ukraine that has killed more than 10,000 people since 2014.

(Reporting by Natalia Zinets; Writing by Matthias Williams; Editing by Raissa Kasolowsky)

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Reuters