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Ukraine's president faces decision on extending cease-fire; death of Russian journalist probed

  • Russia Journalist Killed-1.jpg

    In this Monday, June 30, 2014 frame grab provided by Russian Channel One, Anatoly Klyan, the veteran cameraman, who worked for Russia's Channel One and who has been killed in eastern Ukraine when a bus carrying journalists and soldiers' mothers was hit by gunfire, is seen in an undisclosed location. Anatoly Klyan, 68, who had worked for the state channel for 40 years, was the fifth journalist to be killed since the fighting began in April between Ukrainian government troops and armed pro-Russia separatists. (AP Photo/Russian Chanel One via APTN) (The Associated Press)

  • CORRECTION Ukraine-2.jpg

    CORRECTS THE CONDITION OF THE CAT Valery who gave only his first name carries his injured cat in front of his damaged house after shelling in the city of Slovyansk, Donetsk Region, eastern Ukraine Monday, June 30, 2014. Residential areas came under shelling on Monday morning from government forces. (AP Photo/Dmitry Lovetsky) (The Associated Press)

  • 02aad4d17e788719580f6a7067000af4.jpg

    Women try to open a window in their damaged house after shelling in the city of Slovyansk, Donetsk Region, eastern Ukraine Monday, June 30, 2014. Residential areas came under shelling on Monday morning from government forces. (AP Photo/Dmitry Lovetsky) (The Associated Press)

  • 33d251297e668719580f6a706700fccf.jpg

    A fireman tries to extinguish a burning house after shelling in the city of Slovyansk, Donetsk Region, eastern Ukraine Monday, June 30, 2014. Residential areas came under shelling on Monday morning from government forces. (AP Photo/Dmitry Lovetsky) (The Associated Press)

  • APTOPIX Ukraine-5.jpg

    A woman cries near her burning house after shelling in the city of Slovyansk, Donetsk Region, eastern Ukraine, Monday, June 30, 2014. Residential areas came under shelling on Monday morning from government forces. (AP Photo/Dmitry Lovetsky) (The Associated Press)

Ukraine's president faced a decision Monday on whether to extend a shaky cease-fire with pro-Russia rebels in the country's east, as European leaders pressed Russia to help de-escalate the simmering conflict.

President Petro Poroshenko has already extended the cease-fire from seven days to 10 as part of a peace plan to end the conflict that has killed more than 400 people. National security spokesman Andriy Lysenko said the presidential decision would come before the cease-fire expires at 10 p.m. (1900 GMT, 3 p.m. EDT).

Sporadic fighting still flared Monday despite the cease-fire. Shelling killed at least two people and ruined several apartments in the rebel-held city of Slovyansk in the eastern separatist region of Donetsk.

Poroshenko has demanded that rebels return posts along the Russia border to Ukrainian control and allow international monitors to verify the cease-fire. Rebels in the past have kidnapped several teams of monitors.

European leaders have pressed Russia to help de-escalate the situation or face the possibility of additional economic sanctions. A four-way phone call was to take place Monday among Poroshenko, Russian President Vladimir Putin, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Francois Hollande.

The four also spoke for two hours Sunday as Poroshenko struggled to get his peace plan past a wobbly start. Ukraine says the rebels are still attacking and locals protested near Poroshenko's office in Kiev on Sunday, demanding military action against the separatists.

Poroshenko says his unilateral cease-fire is a first step to give rebels a chance to lay down their arms. Further steps would include an amnesty for separatists who have not committed serious crimes, early local elections and changes in the constitution to decentralize power to Ukraine's regions.

In Slovyansk, shooting kept up through the night and into Monday morning. Residents saying the army appeared to start shelling after rebels opened fire. Heavy shelling was heard throughout the town from 6 a.m. to 7 a.m.

Some of the shelling appeared to be directed at rebel front-line positions outside the city while other shells landed in a residential neighborhood, destroying or damaging several buildings.

One woman, 62-year-old Vera Sayenko, died when a shell hit her ninth floor apartment, neighbors told an AP journalist.

"Everything we have collected in our life is destroyed. We have become poor," said Valery, whose apartment was also destroyed. He would not give his last name. "Show all Ukrainians what happened here. What else do they want, to ruin the town and kill people?"

Ukrainian police and prosecutors were investigating the death of a cameraman working for Russia's Channel One. Anatoly Klyan, 68, was fatally wounded when a bus carrying journalists and soldiers' mothers was hit by gunfire.

Channel One said its crew was traveling late Sunday to a Ukrainian military base with the mothers of conscripts hoping to bring their sons home when their bus came under attack near Avdiivka, a village north of the city of Donetsk. Channel One said the trip was organized by the rebels and that the bus, whose driver was wearing camouflage, came under fire as it approached the military base in the dark.

Russia's Foreign Ministry blamed the attack on Ukrainian soldiers and demanded an objective investigation. Klan was the fifth journalist to die since the fighting began in April.

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Szlanko reported from Slovyansk, Ukraine.