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The International Monetary Fund approved Friday the release of nearly $1.4 billion in fresh funds for troubled Ukraine, as the country faces an escalation in fighting with pro-Russia separatists. The Fund said Kiev had "generally" implemented economic reforms required under the support program launched in April, though it had missed targets for building up reserves and cutting the government's deficit. IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde applauded the progress made by the government that took over after February's overthrow of the pro-Russia president Viktor Yanukovych. It was the second release of funds from the IMF's program to help stabilize the economy and its currency, the hryvnia, battered by years of mismanagement and deep corruption and more recently by Russia's seizure of Crimea and troubles with rebels in the country's east.