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Ukraine's President Lauds Renewed Cease-Fire in War-Torn East


FILE - Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko speaks during the expanded board of the Ministry of Internal Affairs in Kyiv, July 10, 2015.

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said Saturday that the cease-fire in eastern Ukraine had been respected for a week.

Speaking on Ukrainian national television, Poroshenko said that this was the first time since the Western-brokered agreement was signed in Minsk in February that a full week had passed without a single Ukrainian soldier being killed in combat.

It has been reported, however, that several servicemen and civilians died from land mine explosions and automobile accidents. Pro-Russian separatists also announced Saturday that a civilian had been killed near Donetsk by Ukrainian army fire.

The truce to end an armed conflict in eastern Ukraine had been marred by deadly incidents almost daily, and the total casualties stand at more than 6,800.

In a new attempt to end the violence, the Ukrainian government and representatives of Moscow-backed separatists pledged last week to implement the cease-fire agreement starting September 1.

Ukraine's National Security Council approved a new military doctrine on September 2 that declares Russia a military opponent and called for the country to pursue NATO membership.

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