A police chief in the Russian-controlled Ukrainian port city of Mariupol survived an assassination attempt on Monday when his car was blown up, Russian state media reported.

Moscow-installed authorities in occupied Ukraine territories have periodically reported saboteur attacks they blame on Kyiv.

Citing an east Ukrainian separatist source, the TASS news agency reported that police chief Mikhail Moskvin's car was blown up but that he was alive.

"In the morning the car of police chief Moskvin was blow up. He is alive, everything is fine," the anonymous source said, adding that he sustained a "light injury".

The RIA Novosti agency reported that the explosive device placed underneath Moskvin's car went off as he stood close to it, and that he did not need to be hospitalised.

It was not possible for AFP to verify the reports.

Moscow has presented Mariupol, which it seized after a devastating battle last spring, as relatively safe. President Vladimir Putin made a surprise trip there earlier this month.