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KIEV, September 14. /TASS/. Ukraine has given guarantees of the observance of ceasefire in Donbass as of 00:00 hours on Thursday, September 15, Germany's Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said on Wednesday after a meeting with Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko.
"We came here with announcements from Moscow that ceasefire would take effect today as of 24:00 hours," Steinmeier told a news conference.
"During the meeting with Poroshenko we spoke of our satisfaction with the fact this result had beeb achieved," he said. "Ukraine said on his part it would abide by the ceasefire."
Steinmeier has voiced the hope the Contact Group in charge of settling the armed civil conflict in eastern Ukraine will have an opportunity to reach agreement on the pullback of forces from the line of contact in the first group of several areas in Donbass.
"If both sides abide by the ceasefire, then I hope we'll get an opportunity to coordinate a further withdrawal of troops in several pilot areas," he told a news briefing after the French Foreign Minister, Jean-Marc Ayrault and he had had talks with the Ukrainian Foreign Minister, Pavel Klimkin.
"I hope that's exactly the agreement the pilot geoup will reach agreement on next week," Steinmeier said.
Jean-Marc Ayrault said on his part coordination of the document would mark an important stage in the process of peace settlement.
"An important stage will begin next week," he said. "It may bring about consolidation of previous achievements and hope for a Normandy Four summit. The case in hand is the drafting and the signing of a document on the disengagement of armed units in three pilot areas."
Disengagement of units of the parties to the conflict in Donbass appeared on the agenda back in mid-June at a meeting of advisors to the Normandy Four leaders in Minsk The task that was slept out then was to complete it before July 1.
However, the disengagement has not taken place to date, as the sides have managed to come to terms on only two areas out of the ten that had been proposed the village of Petrovskoye in the self-proclaimed Donetsk republic and the village of Zolotoye in the self-proclaimed Lugansk republic.
At its latest session, the Contact Group discussed transforming all the crossing points at the line of contact into safety and security areas.