EUROPEPOLITICS

Ukraine government, rebels agree on weapon-free buffer zone

Kiev UkraineRepresentatives from the Ukrainian government and rebel groups in eastern Ukraine signed a deal Saturday to establish a weapon-free buffer zone after holding peace talks in the Belarusian capital Minsk.

The talks, opened Friday night by the three-party Contact Group of Russia, Ukraine and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), were attended by former Ukrainian President Leonid Kuchma, Russian envoy Mikhail Zurabov, rebel leaders and OSCE representatives.

Kiev and the rebels have agreed to move artillery 15 km away from the front line to create a 30 km buffer zone, said Kuchma after the meeting.

The two sides also agreed to stop using heavy weaponry in populated areas, Kuchma said.

The Ukrainian government and insurgents agreed on a cease-fire on Sept. 5 after envoys from the two warring sides as well as Russia and the OSCE held talks in Minsk.

Source: Xinhua

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