Updated June 20, 2014 1:44 PM
By The Associated Press
Smoke rises from an explosion near a children's hospital following shelling from Ukrainian government forces in Slovyansk, Ukraine, Thursday, June 19, 2014. Heavy fighting raged near Krasnyi Liman, just east of the rebel stronghold of Slovyansk, a city in the Donetsk region that has been the epicenter of violence during the past two months. (AP Photo/Andrei Petrov) (Credit: AP)
(AP) -- Ukraine's president ordered his forces to cease fire Friday and halt military operations for a week against pro-Russian separatists in the country's east -- the first step in a peace plan he hopes will end the fighting that has killed hundreds.
The Kremlin dismissed the plan, saying it sounded like an ultimatum and lacked any firm offer to open talks with insurgents.
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