KIEV, Dec. 2 (Xinhua) -- The Ukrainian parliament on Thursday amended the law on a "special status" to the conflict-hit eastern region of Donbas, extending its term of validity for another year, the parliament press service said.
The bill amending the law was supported by 317 votes in favor, with the required minimum of 226, said a statement on the parliament's website.
While addressing the assembly, Andriy Kostin, head of the parliament committee on legal policy, said that the law amendments were aimed at promoting the peaceful settlement of the situation in certain districts of Donetsk and Luhansk regions in Donbas.
The law would allow pushing forward the peace talks on Donbas in the Minsk format and the Normandy format, Kostin said.
The Ukrainian parliament approved the law on the "special status" to some areas in Luhansk and Donetsk regions in September 2014 as a concession to armed groups, who sought independence from Kiev. The legislation was extended several times since then.
The law on the "special status" increases the authority of local communities by transferring more economic, financial and administrative powers to the regional governments.
The crisis in Donbas has been underway since April 2014, when the Ukrainian government started a military operation against armed groups, who seized cities and towns in Donetsk and Luhansk regions and declared independence. The confrontation has snowballed into a violent conflict, which has killed more than 14,000 people and left about 40,000 injured. Enditem