-- After more than a week of waiting, Ukrainian border and customs officers have begun processing the first group of Russian trucks said to be carrying humanitarian aid for separatist areas of eastern Ukraine. Those trucks cleared the Russian process at the "Donetsk" checkpoint on the Rostov side of the border earlier on Thursday.
-- Ukrainian Economy Minister Pavlo Sheremeta announced his resignation as Kyiv grapples with economic and debt woes, saying via Facebook that he'd rather "concentrate on working with the people who will create tomorrow's system."
-- The Ukrainian National Security and Defense Council said an Su-24M aircraft "returning from an assignment" was "shot down" near Novosvitlivka in Luhansk. "Pilots escaped," the council added.
-- The Russian Defense Ministry has rejected as bogus and "sensationalist" claims by Ukrainian sources that documents from active-duty Russian troops and two infantry vehicles from a Pskov-based Russian airborne division were captured during fighting in Luhansk.
-- Ukrainian military sources reported that intense fighting was continuing in Donetsk, Luhansk, and Ilovaysk.
-- As the trade war over Russia's actions in Ukraine expands, Russian authorities are conducting surprise inspections at outlets of the iconic American fast-food company McDonald's in the Sverdlovsk and Krasnodar regions, with more checks in Tatarstan and in Bashkortostan later this month. The spot checks follow the abrupt closure in Moscow yesterday of at least three McDonald's restaurants, one of which was the busiest in the world.
-- Russian authorities today were beginning a planned resettlement of around 1,000 Ukrainian refugees from temporary shelter in Crimea to more permanent accommodations in Russia. There are said to be around 7,000 such refugees, who have fled the fighting in eastern Ukraine, on the annexed peninsula.
-- The death was confirmed in fighting in Ilovaysk of an American man known as "Franko," later identified as Mark Paslawsky, who is thought to be the first foreigner killed in battle for the Kyiv side. He volunteered for the Donbas Battalion after being granted Ukrainian citizenship.
*NOTE: Times are stated according to local time in Kyiv