Europe

Thousands attend warlord's funeral in Ukraine's rebel east

  • FILE - In this Sunday, May 18, 2014 file photo, Donetsk People's Republic platoon commander Arsen Pavlov, also known as Motorola, rides a bike at a checkpoint blocking the major highway which links Kharkiv, outside Slovyansk, eastern Ukraine. Separatist rebels in eastern Ukraine say a notorious warlord has been killed in a bombing in the rebel stronghold of Donetsk. The separatist mouthpiece Donetsk News Agency said on Sunday, Oct. 16, 2016, Arsen Pavlov was killed in Donetsk when a bomb went off in an elevator in the house he was staying. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko, File)

    FILE - In this Sunday, May 18, 2014 file photo, Donetsk People's Republic platoon commander Arsen Pavlov, also known as Motorola, rides a bike at a checkpoint blocking the major highway which links Kharkiv, outside Slovyansk, eastern Ukraine. Separatist rebels in eastern Ukraine say a notorious warlord has been killed in a bombing in the rebel stronghold of Donetsk. The separatist mouthpiece Donetsk News Agency said on Sunday, Oct. 16, 2016, Arsen Pavlov was killed in Donetsk when a bomb went off in an elevator in the house he was staying. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this Friday, July 11, 2014 file photo, a platoon commander Arsen Pavlov, also known as Motorola, center, attends his and Elena Kolenkina's wedding ceremony with Igor Strelkov, left, a pro-Russian separatist commander, in Donetsk, eastern Ukraine. The separatist mouthpiece Donetsk News Agency said on Sunday, Oct. 16, 2016, Pavlov was killed in Donetsk when a bomb went off in an elevator in the house he was staying. (AP Photo/Dmitry Lovetsky, File)

    FILE - In this Friday, July 11, 2014 file photo, a platoon commander Arsen Pavlov, also known as Motorola, center, attends his and Elena Kolenkina's wedding ceremony with Igor Strelkov, left, a pro-Russian separatist commander, in Donetsk, eastern Ukraine. The separatist mouthpiece Donetsk News Agency said on Sunday, Oct. 16, 2016, Pavlov was killed in Donetsk when a bomb went off in an elevator in the house he was staying. (AP Photo/Dmitry Lovetsky, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • Mourners grieve at the coffin with the body of Arsen Pavlov, a senior commander of pro-Russia separatists in eastern Ukraine, during funeral in Donetsk, Ukraine, Wednesday, Oct. 19, 2016. Thousands have turned out to attend the funeral of one of top military chiefs of pro-Russia separatists in eastern Ukraine, who was killed in a bomb blast. The 33-year-old Arsen Pavlov, also known by nom de guerre Motorola, was killed Sunday when an unidentified explosive device went off in an elevator of his apartment building in Donetsk. (AP Photo/Alexander Ermochenko)

    Mourners grieve at the coffin with the body of Arsen Pavlov, a senior commander of pro-Russia separatists in eastern Ukraine, during funeral in Donetsk, Ukraine, Wednesday, Oct. 19, 2016. Thousands have turned out to attend the funeral of one of top military chiefs of pro-Russia separatists in eastern Ukraine, who was killed in a bomb blast. The 33-year-old Arsen Pavlov, also known by nom de guerre Motorola, was killed Sunday when an unidentified explosive device went off in an elevator of his apartment building in Donetsk. (AP Photo/Alexander Ermochenko)  (The Associated Press)

Thousands have turned out for the funeral of a senior commander of pro-Russia separatists in eastern Ukraine, who was killed in a bomb blast.

Arsen Pavlov, 33, known under his nom de guerre Motorola, was killed Sunday when an unidentified device exploded in an elevator of his apartment building in Donetsk. Rebel officials blamed the explosion on Ukrainian saboteurs.

Thousands lined up in Donetsk Wednesday to pay tribute at the local opera house, where his body was displayed.

Russian-born Pavlov became one of the most recognizable faces of the separatist movement. His unit took part in some of the fiercest battles in the conflict that has killed over 9,600 since April 2014.

Ukrainian officials have accused Pavlov of war crimes, and he once admitted personally killing 15 prisoners of war.