Mayer of east Ukraine city shot and wounded

MARIA DANILOVA Associated Press Published:

KIEV, Ukraine (AP) -- The mayor of an eastern Ukrainian city has been shot and wounded amid separatist unrest, his office says.

The office of Hennady Kernes, the mayor of Ukraine's second-largest city Kharkiv, said Monday he has been wounded with a gunshot to his back. It said he is now undergoing surgery and "doctors are fighting for his life."

Kharkiv is part of the region in eastern Ukraine where pro-Russian gunmen have either seized government buildings or staged protests to demand greater autonomy or outright annexation by Russia.

Kernes first held a pro-Russian stance, but later changed to position himself as largely loyal to the Kiev government.