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Separatists vote for leader in breakaway eastern Ukraine

Pro-Russian separatists will vote to set up a breakaway regional leadership in the eastern Ukraine region of Donetsk and Luhansk aiming to take their war-torn region closer to Russia and defying Kiev and the West as the big guns still boom across the territory.

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'Everyone has to leave' says leader of separatists

The self-declared leader of pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine, Denis Pushilin, says he does not consider his men to be bound by an agreement between Russia and Ukraine requiring illegal groups to disarm and vacate buildings.

Pro-Russian separatists listen to the press conference, with the self proclaimed flag behind them. Credit: APTN

"Regarding the liberation of the occupied buildings, everyone has to leave.

"Yesterday they (Kiev) already started to break (the agreement), they said they won't pull their troops out of Slaviansk and Kramatorsk. If everyone else does it, then of course we're also ready to comply."

The Geneva agreement, signed by the United States, Russia, Ukraine and the European Union on Thursday (April 17), requires all illegal armed groups to disarm and end the illegal occupation of public buildings, streets and squares.

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