Poroshenko 'likely to order withdrawal of weapons in Donbas'
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko is likely on Thursday to order the beginning of the withdrawal of Ukraine’s heavy weapons in the Donbas in accordance with the Minsk agreements of February 12, Reuters has reported, with reference to a military source.
"We expect the announcement by president later [on Thursday]," the source said.
According to the report, the militants claim to have already started withdrawal of their heavy weapons in accordance with the agreements.
The Ukrainian government said that the withdrawal of heavy weapons would take place after the militants stopped their attacks in the Donbas.
Attacks are still going on, but of lesser intensity. For the second day in a row, Ukraine on Thursday reported no killed in action in the Donbas conflict zone over the past 24 hours.
As UNIAN reported earlier, on February 12, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, Russian President Vladimir Putin, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President François Hollande held talks in Minsk to resolve the conflict in the Donbas.
Following the talks, the parties approved a package of measures aimed at the implementation of the Minsk agreements of September. In addition, the leaders of Ukraine, France, Germany and the Russian Federation adopted a declaration in support of these measures.
In addition to other provisions of the new agreements reached by the "Normandy Four" leaders on Thursday, February 12, the parties agreed on a ceasefire to be effective from 0000, February 15, as well as the withdrawal of all heavy weapons. The agreements also provide for the release and exchange of all prisoners.