Rebels fighting for more territory ahead of Ukraine ceasefire: Kiev military




 
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February 14th, 2015  
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Topic: Rebels fighting for more territory ahead of Ukraine ceasefire: Kiev military


By Anton Zverev VUHLEHIRSK, Ukraine (Reuters) - Fighting intensified in eastern Ukraine on Saturday as separatist rebels tried to seize more territory before a ceasefire takes effect at midnight, the Ukrainian military said. The truce envisages the creation of a neutral "buffer zone" and withdrawal of heavy weapons responsible for many of the 5,000 casualties in a conflict that began almost a year ago and gave rise to the worst crisis in relations between Russia and the West since the Cold War a generation ago. "Ahead of midnight, rebels are trying to complete tactically important plans to enlarge the territory under their control, primarily in the direction of Debaltseve," spokesman Andriy Lysenko said at a daily televised briefing in Kiev. Debaltseve, a strategic transport hub northeast of the rebel-controlled stronghold city of Donetsk, has been the focus of some of the fiercest fighting in recent weeks.




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