Europe

Ukraine's president vows to resume coal supply from east

  • Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko speaks at the ceremony commemorating the fallen Heroes of the "Heavenly Hundred" in Kiev, Ukraine, Thursday, Feb. 16, 2017. The "Heavenly Hundred" is what Ukrainians in Kiev call those who died during months of anti-government protests in 2013 and 2014. (AP Photo/Sergei Chuzavkov)

    Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko speaks at the ceremony commemorating the fallen Heroes of the "Heavenly Hundred" in Kiev, Ukraine, Thursday, Feb. 16, 2017. The "Heavenly Hundred" is what Ukrainians in Kiev call those who died during months of anti-government protests in 2013 and 2014. (AP Photo/Sergei Chuzavkov)  (The Associated Press)

  • Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko speaks at the ceremony commemorating the fallen Heroes of the "Heavenly Hundred" in Kiev, Ukraine, Thursday, Feb. 16, 2017. The "Heavenly Hundred" is what Ukrainians in Kiev call those who died during months of anti-government protests in 2013 and 2014. (AP Photo/Sergei Chuzavkov)

    Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko speaks at the ceremony commemorating the fallen Heroes of the "Heavenly Hundred" in Kiev, Ukraine, Thursday, Feb. 16, 2017. The "Heavenly Hundred" is what Ukrainians in Kiev call those who died during months of anti-government protests in 2013 and 2014. (AP Photo/Sergei Chuzavkov)  (The Associated Press)

  • Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko speaks at the ceremony commemorating the fallen Heroes of the "Heavenly Hundred" in Kiev, Ukraine, Thursday, Feb. 16, 2017. The "Heavenly Hundred" is what Ukrainians in Kiev call those who died during months of anti-government protests in 2013 and 2014. (AP Photo/Sergei Chuzavkov)

    Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko speaks at the ceremony commemorating the fallen Heroes of the "Heavenly Hundred" in Kiev, Ukraine, Thursday, Feb. 16, 2017. The "Heavenly Hundred" is what Ukrainians in Kiev call those who died during months of anti-government protests in 2013 and 2014. (AP Photo/Sergei Chuzavkov)  (The Associated Press)

Ukraine's president has pledged to resume coal supplies from separatist-controlled parts of the country.

Fighting in Ukraine's industrial east between government troops and Russia-backed rebels has killed more than 9,800 people since April 2014. Despite the hostilities, Kiev continued to buy coal from areas controlled by separatists as power stations in Ukraine are mostly designed to run on the specific type of coal that is produced there.

Sales were suspended when Ukrainian volunteer battalions and some lawmakers blocked a railroad that brings coal across the front line late last month.

President Petro Poroshenko on Thursday said that the lack of coal from the east risks leaving entire towns without heating and pledged to resume the supply.