President Petro Poroshenko said he would order a ceasefire on Friday for Ukraine's armed forces battling pro-Russian separatists, paving the way for implemention of a "stage-by-stage peace plan" for his country.

Speaking on the sidelines of a NATO summit in Wales on Thursday, he added that the ceasefire was conditional on a planned meeting going ahead in Minsk on Friday of envoys from Ukraine, Russia and Europe's OSCE security watchdog.

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"At 1400 local time (1100 GMT on Friday), provided the (Minsk) meeting takes place, I will call on the General Staff to set up a bilateral ceasefire and we hope that the implementation of the peace plan will begin tomorrow," Poroshenko said.

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