Donetsk, Sep 2 – DAN. Over 30 thousand people have gathered in downtown Donetsk to pay tribute to the late DPR Head Alexander Zakharchenko, who received the honor of lying in state at the Donbass Opera.

Thousands crowded the streets of central Donetsk on Sunday morning as the memorial service began, and people continue to arrive to witness the ceremony.

A mourning ceremony for Alexander Zakharchenko, DPR Head, begins in Donetsk

Banners with Zakharchenko's portraits were installed all over the city, and a large photo was put onto the theater's façade. National flags returned to half-staff for the days of mourning.

Onlookers lined the closed roads in the city center.

Inside the theater, a diverse crowd of politicians, military and civil officers passed in front of the casket, and many teared up.

Foreign delegations have also arrived, one came from the LPR led by the Republic's acting head Leonid Pasechnik.

Alexander Vladimirovich Zakharchenko was born on June 26, 1976. Upon graduation he entered the Donetsk college of industrial automatics.

He graduated with honors, later worked at a mine, then started a business.

In December 2013 Zakharchenko became the leader of Donetsk ‘Oplot’ social organization.

Address of Vladislav Surkov on the death of Alexander Zakharchenko

He joined the ranks of opponents to the Ukrainian 2014 coup d’etat, took part in battles for Donbass independence as a commander of the ‘Oplot’ militia unit. He sustained several injuries. Received Major General military rank, was awarded the Golden Star of the DPR Hero, other orders.

On August 8, 2014 Zakharchenko was appointed the Chairman of the Council of Ministers by the DPR Supreme Council. Won the Head’s election on November 2, 2014 with a sweeping majority and assumed office on November 4.

Alexander Zakharchenko was fatally wounded in an explosion in the Separ restaurant in the center of Donetsk on August 31, 2018.*ot