"The Investigative Committee of Russia opened a criminal case on the fact of an accident in the territory of the Donetsk People's Republic," the ministry said in a statement.

According to the preliminary version of the investigation, the minibus driver drove into the oncoming lane to overtake and collided with a KAMAZ.

Earlier, the acting head of the DPR, Denis Pushilin, confirmed the death of 16 people in an accident on the highway between Torez and Shakhtyorsk, four people were injured.