Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko has ordered army reinforcements to key southern and eastern cities in case of a new rebel offensive.

Mr Poroshenko said the units were to protect Mariupol, Berdyansk, Kharkiv and the north of Luhansk region.

He spoke after meeting security chiefs in the wake of disputed polls in rebel-held areas of Donetsk and Luhansk.

He said he was still committed to the current peace process but has proposed cancelling a key plank of the plan.

The peace process was laid out in a 5 September ceasefire deal agreed in Minsk, Belarus.

Angered by the elections, Mr Poroshenko has proposed scrapping a law that gives special status to Donetsk and Luhansk.

Both regions staged swearing-in ceremonies for their pro-Russian leaders on Tuesday, following the elections there on Sunday.

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