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.

"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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