Information operations · Information Warfare · Ukraine

Ukraine Ad Hoc Media Update (37)


Anonymous expert compilation, analysis, and reporting.

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A busy week in Ukraine, even without the war of the churches:

  1. Russian Duma passed a “resolution”, which looks almost like a declaration of war against Ukraine;
  2. Amb Volker states US arms embargo on Ukraine removed, elaborates on escalating sanctions;
  3. US offers Ukraine two surplus FFG7 frigates – AAW and ASuW configuration has not been disclosed at this time;
  4. Update on Azov Sea, including AFU EX activity and Russian harassment;
  5. Clear Sky 2018 EX reports and summary;
  6. Donbass war update, AFU Mi-24 HIND shoots down Russian Orlan-10 RPV over Lysychansk-Severodonetsk, Col-Gen Poltorak becomes a civilian SECDEF;
  7. Yarosh announces withdrawal of Right Sector militia units from front lines after more than 4 years of continuous combat effort;
  8. Update on Sapsan / Hrim-2 TBM program, status, technology, Zgurets provides detailed brief on the DSMAC / MMWI RADAC / multimode terminal seekers with cited CEP around 6 feet;
  9. Vilkha GMLRS accepted into service, Ukrainian RPV programs, BB-2 helo program;
  10. U.S. FAA allows airlines to resume flights to Dnipro, Zaporizhia, Kharkiv, part Black Sea air space;
  11. Politics update;
  12. Hungary update – note focus on collusion with Russia;

Ukraine Reports

Russian State Duma unanimously declares: “Ukraine has become a terrorist state”. Provocations To Follow – To Inform is to Influence

Russia really lumped a lot of crap into one document: Ukraine is a terrorist state Ukraine will attempt a large-scale military offensive in Donbas Ukraine is seeking to destroy the real Orthodox Church Ukraine is sabotaging the Minsk agreements Ukraine is committing murder in Donbas Ukraine is shelling Donbas Ukraine has totally banned the Russian language Ukraine is discriminating against Russian-speaking population Ukraine is waging terrorism against citizens of Donbas Russia just got kicked in the teeth with the Russian Orthodox Church losing the Ukraine Orthodox Church, so the Russian machismo is hurt. Russia is now flailing about for something, anything, to make them save face. According to Tetyana Stadnyk: “Russian State Duma unanimously adopted a statement on the situation in Ukraine: “Ukraine has become a terrorist state”, the document stresses that “an attempt at a new large-scale military offensive by Ukraine in Donbas & destroy the real Orthodox Church”. Provocations are now inevitable.” I agree with Tetyana, Russia will soon stage a provocation. Russia will follow with a limited conventional invasion, by ground and/or by sea, or may launch a few rockets into Ukraine. I would expect Russia will seek to gain Mariupol and close off Ukraine’s Sea of Azov newest seaport established in that area. Perhaps they will try to extend the land-bridge to Crimea. The document is located here:http://duma.gov.ru/news/28489/. From the Russian Duma’s website:

Государственная Дума приняла заявление в связи с обострением ситуации на Украине

Соответствующее постановление было поддержано единогласно.

EUvsDisinfo: Kremlin refocuses propaganda campaign on No.1 target, Ukraine | UNIAN

For the past several weeks, the Kremlin’s channels have focused mainly on spreading disinformation about Western countries: trying to bury the facts about the Skripal poisoning under distractions and fakes; or inventing other chemical and biological attacks, like here, or here. Kremlin-directed TV shows poured out the vitriol of disinformation messages known already since 2014.

The United States has abolished the embargo on arms sales to Ukraine

Speaking at the Atlantic Council in Washington, US Special Envoy to Ukraine Kurt Volker stated that the United States had abolished an armed embargo for Ukraine. Earlier, the president of the American-Ukrainian Business Council, Morgan Williams, during a Washington-based conference on military industry cooperation, said he was prepared to supply more defense weapons and services to Ukraine through the US Defense Ministry, both on land and offshore, taking into account the current aggression of the Russian Federation Azov sea. According to Kurt Volker, the administration has decided that Ukraine is a normal state with the right to protect its borders. “We have abolished the embargo on arms supplies to Ukraine – this is what we thought a few years ago as a potentially provocative step, although Ukraine has the right to defend itself. We have got rid of this [embargo], we have helped Ukraine deliver anti-tank weapons, anti-sniper systems, “Volker said.

Volker announces talks with Ukraine on sale of U.S. weapons | UNIAN

Kurt Walker, Special Representative of the U.S. Department of State for Ukraine negotiations, has announced possible negotiations with Kyiv on sales of U.S. weapons. The envoy recalled that the United States had lifted the embargo on arms supplies to Ukraine.

U.S. leader Donald Trump personally decided to apply pressure on Russia because of the aggression in Ukraine – Trump not to change policy towards Russia, – Volker – 112.international

Our goal is a peaceful solution; it’s not about sanctions against the Kremlin, but about restoring the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine, the U.S. Envoy in Ukraine said.

U.S. Envoy: No Progress Ending Ukraine War As Putin Waits For Kyiv Elections

The U.S. special envoy for Ukraine, Kurt Volker, says he does not expect progress anytime soon toward ending the conflict in eastern Ukraine because Russia appears to be waiting for possible change…

Russia determined to “continue Donbas war”: Volker | UNIAN

Kurt Walker, a Special Representative of the U.S. Department of State for Ukraine negotiations, says he believes Russia will retain its current position toward Ukraine until the presidential and parliamentary elections are held in Ukraine in 2019. The U.S. envoy believes Russia does not intend to change its stance on Ukraine.

UAWire – Russia accuses US representative Volker of undermining Minsk agreements

The Russian Foreign Ministry believes that the U.S. Special Representative for Ukraine, Kurt Volker is working on the “destruction” of the Minsk …

U.S. intends to boost sanctions regime against Russia ‘every month or two’, – Volker – 112.international

Washington plans to make the anti-Russian sanctions mode harder every month or two, Kurt Volker says

Trump: I am tough with Putin and gave Ukraine more weapons than Obama – 112.international

President of the United States Donald Trump claimed in the interview to CBS that he is tough with President of Russia Vladimir Putin. The journalist asked Trump why he never has a harsh word for Vladimir Putin. ‘I didn’t? I’m the one that gave Ukraine offensive weapons and tank killers. Obama didn’t. You know what he sent? He sent pillows and blankets,’ Trump answered.

Trump blames Obama for giving away part of Ukraine – 15.10.2018 13:57 — Ukrinform News

U.S. President Donald Trump blames his predecessor, Barack Obama, for giving away a part of Ukraine. “I’m the one that gave Ukraine offensive weapons and tank killers. Obama didn’t. You know what he sent? He sent pillows and blankets. I’m the one– and he’s the one that gave away a part of Ukraine,” Trump said in an interview with CBS News. The U.S. President denied he allegedly never say anything harsh about Vladimir Putin. “I think I’m very tough with him personally. I had a meeting with him. The two of us. It was a very tough meeting and it was a very good meeting,” Trump said. He acknowledged that Russians had interfered in the 2016 campaign election adding that China had meddled too. When asked whether he agrees that Vladimir Putin is involved in assassinations and poisonings, the American leader said: “Probably, he is.” At the same time Trump noted that happened not in the United States.

U.S. eyes giving Ukraine Oliver Hazard Perry frigates to boost defenses in Black, Azov Seas | UNIAN

The United States offered Ukraine the Oliver Hazard Perry type frigates under the “Excessive Defense Property.” The warships could significantly increase the defense capability of the Ukrainian Armed Forces at the Black and Azov Seas war theaters.

U.S. offers Ukrainian Navy old Oliver Hazard Perry frigates – 112.international

The U.S. government considers the option to pass the Oliver Hazard Perry type frigates to Ukraine; the move that clearly aims to boost the country’s defense capability on sea. The Ukrainian Military Portal reported this with the reference to a source in the Ukrainian Navy. ‘The U.S. leadership sent a letter to the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense about military and technical assistance to the Ukrainian Navy through the military attache of the United States Embassy’, UNIAN wrote, quoting the Ukrainian Military Portal. The warships appear to fall under the Excess Defense Article program. The undisclosed source in the Ukrainian Navy confirmed that the U.S. Embassy turned to Ukraine’s defense ministry with the respective offer. ‘But we haven’t decided yet; one has to take everything into account – the crew training, the price of service of these vessels, the price of maintenance works et cetera’, the source claimed. Oliver Hazard Perry type frigates may be of use in the Black Sea waters; they can’t be deployed in the Sea of Azov, though, as these ships’ water draught is too big for these waters. These warships were designed in the United States in the mid-1970s as general-purpose escort vessels inexpensive enough to be bought in large quantities to replace World War II-era destroyers and complement 1960s-era Knox-class frigates. The Oliver Hazard Perry-class frigates were designed primarily as anti-aircraft and anti-submarine warfare guided-missile warships intended to provide open-ocean escort of amphibious warfare ships and merchant ship convoys in moderate threat environments in a potential war with the Soviet Union and the Warsaw Pact countries. They could also provide air defense against 1970s- and 1980s-era aircraft and anti-ship missiles. The frigates are equipped to escort and protect aircraft carrier battle groups, amphibious landing groups, underway replenishment groups, and merchant ship convoys. They can conduct independent operations to perform such tasks as surveillance of illegal drug smugglers, maritime interception operations, and exercises with other nations.

The US has proposed to hand over frigates to the Ukrainian Navy

From the sources of the Ukrainian Military Portal it became known that the United States authorities sent a letter to the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine through the military attache of the United States Embassy on providing military and technical assistance to the Armed Forces of Ukraine, including the Naval Forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. Among the proposed issues is the issue of obtaining frigates type “Oliver Hazard Perry”, which are at the disposal of the United States Navy and may be transferred under the Excess Defense Article (Excess Defense Article). The proposal to transfer the ship was confirmed by the Commander of the Navy of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Ihor Voronchenko to theBabel : “With the proposal to transfer the Ukrainian ship to us, the US embassy turned to me, I just received a letter yesterday. But we have not yet made a decision, we have to calculate everything – on the training of crews, how much will cost their operation, repairs, “- he said. The said ships can significantly increase the defense capability of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in the Black Sea and Azov Opera Theaters. At the end of August 2018, the ambassador of Ukraine to the United States at the press conference “Ukraine-USA: Why We Can Talk About a New Level of Partnership” said that the success of the implementation of the project on the transfer of patrol boats of the type Island will allow Ukraine to purchase and receive more modern weapons in the United States. “If we go along with it successfully, then we can then develop along the marine component, as well as some other types of weapons,” – said Chaly. In the 2000s, Ukrainian ships were trained on these ships, and on March 25, 2009, a frigate of this type – the USS Klakring (FFG-42) – traveled to Sevastopol.

Oliver Hazard Perry-class frigate – Wikipedia

Ridvan Bari Urcosta | Ukraine’s Strategic Aims in the Sea of Azov – Jamestown

Today’s (October 17) news of a tragic attack on a school in the Crimean coastal city of Kerch (UNIAN, October 17) snapped global attention back to this Russian-occupied corner of Ukraine, which itself borders on a precarious security situation in the Kerch Strait and Azov Sea. For the past year, Russia has been harassing Ukrainian vessels passing through the Strait to and from the Azov Sea, increasing the time it takes for them to reach Ukrainian ports or international waters—with serious economic and security implications for the country’s southeast. In addition, continually strengthening Russian naval and maritime security forces have been challenging Ukrainian naval vessels in contested regional waters as well as close to Ukrainian shores (see EDM, April 12, May 8, 31, June 11). On October 12, Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko signed a decree concerning the deteriorating situation in the Azov Sea (Rnbo.gov.ua, October 12). Specifically, the document claims Ukrainian sovereignty over its territorial waters in the Kerch Strait and the Sea of Azov as well as calls for measures to counter Russian superiority in these linked bodies of water. The presidential decree legally reinforced Kyiv’s earlier decision, on September 23, to send two Ukrainian supplementary naval vessels, the A500 Donbas (built in 1969) and A830 Korets (1973), through the Kerch Strait to the port of Berdyansk (UNIAN, September 23). The freedom-of-navigation operation not only aimed to reaffirm Ukraine’s right to free passage through the Strait (Ukrinform, September 26), which Russia de facto dominates from both sides due to the annexation of Crimea. Ukraine was also likely testing the Russian reaction and observing the latter’s reconnaissance and data gathering competencies. Finally, the Donbas and Korets’ northward passage through the Kerch Strait was part of Ukraine’s plans to establish a new naval base at Berdyansk for the Azov Flotilla, which it is now in the process of standing up. The Azov Sea naval base will comprise the third Ukrainian coastal outpost guarding a strategic chokepoint. The pre-existing other two are the West Naval Base (in Odesa), responsible for securing Ukraine’s interests throughout the wider Black Sea, and the Southern Naval Base (Ochakiv and Mykolaiv), which defends the Dnieper River and its delta.

Ukraine’s strategic aims in the Sea of Azov – 112.international

For the past year, Russia has been harassing Ukrainian vessels passing through the Strait to and from the Azov Sea, increasing the time it takes for them to reach Ukrainian ports or international waters—with serious economic and security implications for the country’s southeast

UAWire – Poroshenko inspects Ukrainian troops for readiness to repel Russian ‘aggression’ from sea

As part of his working visit to the Zaporizhia and Donetsk regions, the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, President Petro …

Poroshenko says Ukraine getting prepared to repel military aggression coming from Sea of Azov

Ukraine is getting prepared to repel a Russian aggression from sea, specifically, from the Sea of Azov, President Petro Poroshenko has said.

Ukraine preparing to resist Russia in Azov Sea, – Poroshenko – 112.international

Ukraine is preparing to resist Russian aggression in the Sea of Azov. About this informed President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko at the ceremony of solemn oath by the students of the Kyiv Military Lyceum named after Ivan Bogun. His speech was broadcasted by “112 Ukraine”. “We are preparing to repulse Russian aggression at the sea direction – in Azov Sea. Gunpowder should be kept ready,” Poroshenko noted. On October 12, President Petro Poroshenko introduced a partially secret decision of the Security and Defense Council (NSDC) to protect the interests of Ukraine in the south and east, as well as in the Black and Azov Seas and in the Kerch Strait. Earlier, NSDC Secretary Alexander Turchinov said that Ukraine would continue to expand its military presence in the Sea of Azov to repel “possible aggression” on the part of the Russian Federation. In particular, a shipboat group has already been created, and plans include the creation of a naval base on the Sea of Azov by the end of 2018. We recall that in the last three months, Russia’s activity in the Azov Sea has increased significantly. The Russians do not allow merchant ships which enter and leave Ukrainian ports to pass through the Kerch Strait without hindrance. In this regard, the President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko instructed the Minister of Defense, the Chief of General Staff and the command of the Ukrainian Navy to take measures to stop Russian provocations regarding blocking the entry of ships into Ukrainian ports in the Sea of Azov. As noted by the President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko, the Russian Federation intends to occupy the Sea of Azov, as well as Crimean peninsula. Kyiv will not allow this.

Ukraine to use force if situation at sea escalates – Navy commander – 16.10.2018 16:11 — Ukrinform News

The Ukrainian Navy is ready to use force against Russian forces if the situation in the Azov and Black Seas escalates, Ukrainian Navy Commander Ihor Voronchenko has said in an interview with the BBC Ukrainian.

UAWire – Ukraine to establish border with Russia in the Azov and Black Seas

On October 12, President Petro Poroshenko put into effect the decision of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine (NSDC) to protect Ukraine’s interests in the Azov and Black Seas, the Kerch Strait, as well as in the south and east of Ukraine, as stated in Decree No. 320/2018. A great number of articles of this decree are classified. The non-confidential part of the decree speaks about, for example, the need to form a working situational group to protect Ukraine’s national interests in the Black and Azov Seas and the Kerch Strait; the approval of the international reintegration strategy of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea; drafting laws on inland waters, the territorial sea and the adjacent zone of Ukraine; the approval of the target program on the creation of an information system that would report on the situation in the seas and the basins of the Dnieper and Danube rivers. In addition, Ukraine intends to determine the coordinates of the demarcation line in the Azov Sea, the Ketch Strait and the Black Sea, which will become the state border between the Ukrainian and Russian inland waters. The decree provides the development of the capabilities of Ukraine’s seaports in the Azov Sea, including dredging work. The document emphasizes the fact that the Russian Federation has abused the provisions of international treaties on the cooperation in the waters of the Azov Sea and the Kerch Strait, as well as the fact that Russia has created an offensive military grouping near the borders of Ukraine and has activated the Russian special services against Ukraine. In addition, the document notes the fact of Russia’s illegal economic activities of exploring and mining mineral resources in the “temporarily occupied” territories of Ukraine, including in the Black and Azov Seas, as well as poaching seafood in the territorial sea and in the exclusive (maritime) economic zone of Ukraine.

Ukraine holding military drills to defend Azov Sea coast (Video) | UNIAN

Ukraine has been holding military drills to defend the coast of the Sea of Azov. The drills are designed to check the army’s readiness to repel possible Russian aggression.

Ukraine Army drills: Conditional enemy landing groups destroyed on Azov coast (Photo) | UNIAN

A total of 600 servicemen and 150 units of equipment are taking part in the exercise.

The largest ship of the Marine Border Guard on Azov has been repaired

Marine guard ship BG-32 Donbass of the Mariupol Marine detachment of the State Border Guard Service has returned to the border for the protection of the state border in the waters of the Sea of ​​Azov after the dock repair. This is reported by the press service of the State Border Guard Service of Ukraine The Azov Shipyard was engaged in the restoration of the largest ship of the Marine Security of the SBGS in the Azov Sea , which opted for a tender victory for carrying out repair works of the ship.

UK military delegation visits Ukrainian Navy | Міноборони

The UK military delegation visited the Ukrainian Navy to discuss support which can be provided to the Ukrainian Navy. Guests were briefed on prospects of the national fleet transformation. The foreign delegation visited Hetman Sahaidachnyi frigate, small armoured boats, and Naval Institute. The working groups of the two countries discussed concept and further cooperation. Press Centre of the Navy Command

Ukraine’s JFO: Russian border guards detain Ukrainian fishermen | UNIAN

The press center of Ukraine’s Joint Forces Operation (JFO) has reported Russia’s FSB border guards have detained fishermen from the temporarily occupied territory of Ukraine in the Taganrog Bay. The Ukrainian fishermen went to sea from the Russian-occupied village of Kholodne, Donetsk region.

Ukraine to delineate sea border with Russia – decree – LB.ua news portal

Ukraine to delineate sea border with Russia – decree. President Poroshenko enacted the security council’s decision. Political – LB.ua news portal. Latest from Ukraine and the world today

Russia Says Military Training Jet Crashes

The Russian Defense Ministry says one of its jets has crashed during a training flight over the Sea of Azov and that two pilots are missing.

UAWire – Russia deploys two military vessels in Sea of Azov

In order to increase the numbers of its surface forces, Russia has sent two military ships to the Sea of Azov: the Project 1040 Svetlyak-class patrol boats Syktyvkar and Kizlyar from the Russian Coast Guard, the Ukrainian Military Portal reports. On October 10, the Kizlyar was spotted at the Cheboksary Reservoir, not far from Nizhny Novgorod beyond the passage in Arkhangelsk. The Syktyvkar took the same course on October 11. “Both ships are expected to arrive in the Sea of Azov after October 20,” the report states. It is not yet known which Russian Coast Guard regiment the ships will be joining. Both ships were built at the Almaz plant in St. Petersburg. Although they were designed according to Project 10410 (Svetlyak), they have different weapons. The Syktyvkar was commissioned in 1995 and is armed with a 76mm AK-176M gun, a 30mm AK-630M, two launchers for Igla surface-to-air missiles, 2 bomb droppers (12 GB BB-1), and two MRG-1 Ogonyok grenade launchers (RG-55M and GRS-55 grenades). At the end of May, Russia had already deployed a Shmel-class Project 1204 artillery boat and one Project 1400M Grif-class boat in the Sea of Azov. The boats are stationed at the base in occupied Kerch.

UAWire – Russian missile systems in Crimea put on alert

Soldiers from the coastal missile and artillery brigade of Russia’s Black Sea Fleet have been put on alert in order to take part in tactical exercises, the Russian Defense Ministry reported on October 15. Divisions of Bastion and Bal mobile coastal anti-ship systems and Utes coastal missile systems were given practical tasks to complete as part of the combat training plan. “During the drills, missile division crews will carry out a set of combat training tasks, including deploying and using the systems, preparation to fire, changing firing positions and marching, as well as meeting equipment standards and camouflaging firing positions,” the report states. The drills will continue until the end of the week. The day before, divisions of the Black Sea Fleet marines landed on stretches of the coast from large Orsk and Azov landing ships, under the cover of Southern Military District army aircraft. After the annexation of Crimea in 2014, Russia has been conducting regular military exercises on the peninsula. The General Staff of Ukraine considers such actions illegal.

Black Sea gas deposits – an overlooked reason for Russia’s occupation of Crimea |Euromaidan Press |

Article by: Kostiantyn Yanchenko The Ukrainian patrol ship “Hryhoriy Kuropiatnykov” slowly leaves the port of Odesa. Aboard the vessel, there are more people than usual: military prosecutors, representatives of the Ukrainian oil and gas sector, and an assault group of the security service – in case things get out of hand. All of them went to sea to document how Russia, in violation of international norms, exploits two Ukrainian drilling rigs. The modern Singapore-made equipment was purchased by Ukraine in 2011 and appropriated by Russia during the annexation of the Crimea. “Now Russia steals Ukrainian gas using stolen Ukrainian platforms and sells it to the stolen Ukrainian peninsula,” describes the situation Ukrainian journalist Andriy Tsapliyenko, who is also on board. After some 80 km from the mainland, the ship’s detectors notice one of the rigs. It’s visible that the platform is in operation, devastating the Odesa gas field of 22 billion cubic meters (bcm). On the one hand, this is quite a bit. But, let’s say, for Denmark, these stocks would be enough for about 15 years. Right after the Ukrainian ship starts approaching, all the lighting on the platforms goes out…

Kerch Strait Bridge may collapse at any time – expert | UNIAN

Ukrainian Architect George Dukhovychnyi says the Crimean Bridge may collapse at any time as its construction was the Kremlin’s political adventure rather than the implementation of an expedient and durable infrastructure project with application of advanced construction technologies. “What Russia has done in the Kerch Strait [construction of the Crimean Bridge] is mainly a political adventure… as it was with the USSR, and now with the Russian Federation. I know that there is a very problematic geological situation in the Kerch Strait Bridge area. There is no solid ground foundation. It’s impossible to reach the continental layers by drilling because they lie at great depths. Moreover, a complex sea current and geological foundation do not allow ensuring that the bridge structure and its pillars are strong and permanent. And the fact that parts of the bridge began to collapse in less than a year is evidence that the bridge has no adequate foundation, which is very important,” he told the Segodnya newspaper on October 12. Read more on UNIAN: https://economics.unian.info/10296951-kerch-strait-bridge-may-collapse-at-any-time-expert.html

An earthquake with a magnitude of around 4.7 points occurred on October 15 on the border between Ukraine and Russia in the Sea of ​​Azov – 112.international

An earthquake with a magnitude of around 4.7 points occurred on October 15 on the border between Ukraine and Russia in the Sea of Azov. This is reported by the Euro-Mediterranean Seismological Center. According to the agency, tremors recorded at a depth of 10 km at 13:42. The epicenter of the earthquake was located 58 km from Berdyansk, Zaporizhya region. At the same time, the Russian Emergency Ministry Directorate for the Krasnodar Territory, citing the geophysical service of the Russian Academy of Sciences, reports that the magnitude was 4.3 points. “According to the report of operational duty officers of Yeisk, Primorsko-Akhtarsk and Temryuk districts, no pushing was felt by residents, there were no victims and no damage. The evacuation of the population was not carried out. Life support objects and the economy are operating normally,” the regional emergency ministry said. Earlier President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko informed that Ukraine is preparing to resist Russian aggression in the Sea of Azov. “We are preparing to repulse Russian aggression at the sea direction – in Azov Sea. Gunpowder should be kept ready,” Poroshenko noted. On October 12, President Petro Poroshenko introduced a partially secret decision of the Security and Defense Council (NSDC) to protect the interests of Ukraine in the south and east, as well as in the Black and Azov Seas and in the Kerch Strait. Earlier, NSDC Secretary Alexander Turchinov said that Ukraine would continue to expand its military presence in the Sea of Azov to repel “possible aggression” on the part of the Russian Federation. In particular, a shipboat group has already been created, and plans include the creation of a naval base on the Sea of Azov by the end of 2018.

Former Russian MP assesses chances of Crimea return to Ukraine | UNIAN

Asked about the possibility of Crimea’s return to Ukraine, Ilya Ponomarev, ex-deputy of the Russian State Duma (2007-2016), said: “The probability is 100%. The only question is when.” However, he remained skeptical as to the likelihood of the peninsula being used as a springboard for the offensive against mainland Ukraine, according to Glavred. “Rather, the Crimea-based naval contingent can be used to control natural resources located in the Odesa section of the Black Sea shelf. I think that Ukraine should have held the most serious negotiations with the United States and NATO to protect them,” the Russian opposition politician said. He also added that Russia seeks to complicate the situation with the Crimean population, that is to “wash away” the residents who lived on the peninsula before annexation, and complicate the procedure for returning the peninsula to Ukraine. “Look at the Baltic states, where similar processes took place within the Soviet Socialist Republic after 1940: see how many problems these countries have today, and all those unfortunate people who believed in their country and moved there after the occupation became hostages of big political games,” Ponomarev summed up. He also said Russia annually loses 2-3% of GDP as a result of the Western sanctions, but most importantly, it loses its future. “The oil that is currently being extracted continues to be produced, but [the development] of new fields that require new technologies supplied by Western servicing companies will no longer be available. Due to the sanctions and international isolation, the overwhelming number of foreign investors have left the country and halted new investment projects. Almost all high-tech companies that had so rapidly begun to develop under the Medvedev presidency ‘ran away’,” he said.

Exercise Clear Sky 18 wraps up in Ukraine – Defence Blog

The U.S. Airmen trained side-by-side with their Ukrainian counterparts throughout the exercise, conducting formation and low-level aviation, air sovereignty, air interdiction, air-to-ground integration, air mobility operations, aeromedical evacuation, cyber defense, and personnel recovery during Clear Sky 2018 exercise. Exercise Clear Sky 2018 lasted from October 10 through 19, 2018, and was focused on improving interoperability between the U.S. and Ukraine, which focused on multinational and coalition operations. F-15C Eagles from the 144th Fighter Wing, Fresno Air National Guard Base, Calif., have participated in Clear Sky 2018, a joint and multinational exercise that also were involved personnel from nine nations, including Belgium, Denmark, Estonia, the Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Ukraine, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Additionally, a C-130J Super Hercules from the 146th Airlift Wing, Channel Islands Air National Guard Station, Calif., also has arrived in Ukraine, to participate in the exercise. The training focused on air sovereignty, air interdiction, air-to-ground integration, air mobility operations, aeromedical evacuation, cyber defense, and personnel recovery. This exercise aims to enhance regional capabilities to secure air sovereignty and promote peace and security through cooperation, collaboration and interoperability with NATO partners and other allies in the region. But this year exercise overshadowed by the fact that Lt. Col. Seth “Jethro” Nehring, assigned to the 194th Fighter Squadron, was killed with his Ukrainian counterpart in a Su-27UB fighter jet crash in west-central Ukraine field. The accident occurred at around 5:00 PM local time on Oct. 16, 2018, near the village of Ulaniv, which is situated approximately 185 miles southwest of the Ukranian capital Kyiv. He was serving as the Operations Officer in the Joint Operations Center, meaning he was the liaison between the exercise director, Maj. Gen. Garrison and all flying operations. He was handpicked for this position due to his operational experience and long history with our unit. Jethro has been a member of the 144th family for over 20 years. He began his career here as an enlisted crew chief before being selected for a pilot slot and flew the F-16 Viper for over 15 years and converted to the F-15 Eagle.

Russia concerned about U.S. large-scale air force drill in Ukraine – Defence Blog

Russian officials and experts have raised concerns about a joint U.S.-Ukraine largest aviation exercise — called the Clear Sky 2018. The Clear Sky 2018 is a multinational military exercise with the participation of U.S. combat aircraft and takes place mainly at Starokostiantyniv Air Base, located about 150 miles southwest of Kyiv, and other training areas and ranges in Ukraine. Besides Ukraine and the United States, Belgium, Denmark, Estonia, the Netherlands, Poland, Romania and the United Kingdom are participating. Clear Sky 18 promotes regional stability and security, while strengthening partner capabilities and fostering trust. But Russian officials are concerned about that near the borders with Russia are concentrated NATO combat aircraft and fighters of the U.S. Air Force. It involves more than fifty aircraft from eight NATO member-states. U.S. aircraft participating include an F-15 fighters jets from the California Air National Guard ; KC-135s from the Illinois Air National Guard and the 100th Air Refueling Wing; and MQ-9s operating out of Miroslawiec Military Air Base, Poland. Also, Military expert Alexander Zhilin stated an interview with Russian media that these drills, like many other similar exercises held in Ukraine with the participation of USA and NATO, are directed against the Russian Federation and are preparing a springboard for an offensive against Moscow. “The next NATO military exercises involving Ukraine have a frankly anti-Russian orientation. A number of complex tasks are being worked out: the use of aviation, electronic intelligence and so on. With this, Ukraine is not an ally for the United States. Ukraine is a springboard for waging war against the Russian Federation if the United States wants to unleash it, ”Zhilin said. It should be stated, really Ukraine is not NATO member, although relations with the alliance began in 1994. In 2014, following the Russian invasion and annexation of Crimea, Ukraine has been involved in a low-intensity conflict with Russian proxy forces in the east of the country, growing, as a consequence, cooperation with NATO. Оfficials of the U.S. Air National Guard states that Clear Sky 18 promotes regional stability and security, while strengthening partner capabilities and fostering trust. Training will focus on air sovereignty, air interdiction, air-to-ground integration, air mobility operations, aeromedical evacuation, cyberdefense and personnel recovery. In addition, Ukrainian President, Petro Poroshenko said that the training is intended to increase the level of interoperability of the Air Forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine with the Air Forces of the US and NATO, work out effective joint management of operations in the air, work out the sharing of intelligence and surveillance capabilities, as well as cyberdefense focused on the needs of the air forces. During the working trip to Khmelnytskyi region, President, Supreme Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko visited the Joint Operational Center of the “Clean Sky – 2018” multinational exercises, in which Ukrainian military and military of the NATO member-states take part . “This is the largest exercise in the last four years. It involves more than fifty aircrafts from eight NATO member-states and our planes – of the Ukrainian Air Forces. The purpose of the exercises is to increase the level of interoperability of our combat aircrafts with the air forces of the United States and other member states of the Alliance,” the President emphasized. The Head of State remarked: “Five years ago our planes rusted on the ground and military pilots forgot about the sky. But today, each of you has an opportunity to see the professional skills of our pilots – soldiers, who carry out difficult tasks on an equal footing with their foreign counterparts”. “Our attack planes, our F-planes, our bombers are in full coordination with the control center, carry out combat missions together with the F-15, F-16 of the NATO members and received the highest marks from our partners. We are proud of the Ukrainian warriors,” Petro Poroshenko added.

President: “Clear Sky — 2018” multinational training is an increase in the level of interoperability between Ukraine and NATO | Міноборони

During the working trip to Khmelnytskyi region, President, Supreme Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko visited the Joint Operational Center of the “Clear Sky — 2018” multinational exercises, in which Ukrainian military and military of the NATO member-states take part . The training is intended to increase the level of interoperability of the Air Forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine with the Air Forces of the US and NATO, work out effective joint management of operations in the air, work out the sharing of intelligence and surveillance capabilities, as well as cyberdefense focused on the needs of the air forces. The Supreme Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces met with Deputy Commander at United States Cyber Command, Lieutenant-General Vincent Stewart and also talked with the commanders of the brigades and other units of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, National Guard of Ukraine, State Border Service of Ukraine. “This is the largest exercise in the last four years. It involves more than fifty aircrafts from eight NATO member-states and our planes — of the Ukrainian Air Forces. The purpose of the exercises is to increase the level of interoperability of our combat aircrafts with the air forces of the United States and other member states of the Alliance,” the President emphasized. The Head of State remarked: “Five years ago our planes rusted on the ground and military pilots forgot about the sky. But today, each of you has an opportunity to see the professional skills of our pilots — soldiers, who carry out difficult tasks on an equal footing with their foreign counterparts”. “Our attack planes, our F-planes, our bombers are in full coordination with the control center, carry out combat missions together with the F-15, F-16 of the NATO members and received the highest marks from our partners. We are proud of the Ukrainian warriors,” Petro Poroshenko added. During the meeting with the military, the President noted that according to the opinion polls about citizens’ attitude to the Day of the Defender of Ukraine, 62% support the introduction of a new holiday. “At first glance, not so much as it should have been. But let’s not forget that this date appeared in our official calendar only four years ago. Therefore, in fact, the figure should be considered as a high indicator of people’s trust in the Ukrainian Army — the Armed Forces of Ukraine. I am confident that it will continue to increase every year,” the President said. The President said that thirty-nine brigades and a number of military units of operational, logistical and technical support had already been formed. In the areas of potential threats, a grouping of forces prepared to repel aggression not only from the east, but also from the Crimean direction, from Transnistria and the north was formed, an aircraft fleet and a combat composition of anti-aircraft missile troops was increased, which allowed to strengthen the air defense of the state.

New era: U.S. Air Force makes historic deployment to Ukraine – Defence Blog

The 144th Fighter Wing F-15C Eagle fighter jets are making a historic deployment for the first time ever on Ukrainian soil to participate in Clear Sky 2018. One of Ukraine’s biggest military exercises began on Monday, Oct. 8, 2018, at Starokostiantyniv and Vinnytsia Air bases. The Clear Sky exercise will continue until 19 October. A U.S. Air Force F-15C Eagle fighter jets assigned to the 144th Fighter Wing from California Air National Guard Base Fresno temporarily deployed to Starokostiantyniv Air base to conduct aviation exercises with the Ukrainian Sy-27 and MiG-29. The Clear Sky exercise focus on the air-to-ground scenarios with AI (air interdiction) and CAS (Close Air Support) missions, as well as air mobility operations, aeromedical evacuation, cyber defense and personnel recovery. The exercise promotes regional stability and security, while strengthening partner capabilities and fostering trust. The training at CLEAR SKY greatly improves interoperability among participating countries. “Military cooperation is like a big ship on a course, the crews change out, but the course is pretty much the same. We stay consistent and have enjoyed a consistent 25-year relationship with Ukraine. Post 2014, we have picked up speed on the course and we are now moving more quickly towards our common goals,” said U.S. Army Col. Robert Peters, Chief of the Office of Defense Cooperation. Engagements are a large component of the State Partnership Program and the Clear Sky 2018 exercise currently taking place on Starokonstantinov Air Base, Ukraine. “Our goal is to work with them while honoring their right to choose to more towards the West. As part of that, we help them defend their sovereignty and territorial integrity through our defense corroboration programs,” said Peters. “The Clear Sky 2018 exercise is a very visible, high profile event, and our role is to augment what is planned and executed by USAFE and the California ANG. We help fill the gaps, and the State Partnership Program is a huge component of that. ” said Peters.

Ukrainian Su-27 makes unbelievably low pass during Clear Sky 18 – Defence Blog

Sukhoi Su-27UB of Ukrainian Air Force make one of the most insanely low-altitude passes during Clear Sky 2018 exercise at the Starokostiantyniv Air Base, Ukraine. During a practice demonstration at the “Clean Sky – 2018” multinational exercises, in which Ukrainian military and military of the NATO member-states take part, the pilots of Ukrainian Su-27UB (70 BLUE) conducted a really impressive low pass in front of the public viewing area. Ukrainian Air Force pilots regularly fly at low altitude and received the highest marks from at international aviation events. The Clear Sky 18’s training is intended to increase the level of interoperability of the Air Forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine with the Air Forces of the US and NATO, work out effective joint management of operations in the air, work out the sharing of intelligence and surveillance capabilities, as well as cyberdefense focused on the needs of the air forces. “This is the largest exercise in the last four years. It involves more than fifty aircrafts from eight NATO member-states and our planes – of the Ukrainian Air Forces. The purpose of the exercises is to increase the level of interoperability of our combat aircrafts with the air forces of the United States and other member states of the Alliance,” early said Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko during his visit to the Joint Operational Center of the Clean Sky – 2018 multinational exercises. Petro Poroshenko also added: “Five years ago our planes rusted on the ground and military pilots forgot about the sky. But today, each of you has an opportunity to see the professional skills of our pilots – soldiers, who carry out difficult tasks on an equal footing with their foreign counterparts”. “Our attack planes, our F-planes, our bombers are in full coordination with the control center, carry out combat missions together with the F-15, F-16 of the NATO members and received the highest marks from our partners. We are proud of the Ukrainian warriors,” Petro Poroshenko added.

The Aviationist » Yet Another Ukrainian Air Force Su-25 Insane Low Pass Video Emerges

It’s pretty obvious: Ukrainian Air Force pilots fly low quite often and new videos showing a Ukrainian jet buzzing someone at airbases around the country appear regularly. On Sept. 30 we have posted a clip of a Su-24M Fencer buzzing the flight line at an airbase in Ukraine, probably Starokostiantyniv or “Staro”, the main operating base of exercise Clear Sky 2018. The footage was particularly impressive as the Su-24 flew over a bunch of other Fencers parked on a ramp by matter of a few meters. Previously we had posted the clip of a MiG-29 performing a show of force onpro-Russia separatist blocking rails; the one of an Ilyushin Il-76 buzzing some Su-25s (and the Frogfoots returning the favor while buzzing the tower); another showing a Su-25 flying low over the heads of a group of female soldiers posing for a photograph and then performing an aileron roll; the one of a Su-27 Flanker performing a low pass right after take off; and a Su-24MR tactical reconnaissance aircraft again flying low over the flight line at Starokostiantyniv. The latest one is a footage showing two Su-25M1 flying low over a taxiway. It’s not clear when it was filmed nor where. However, considered the number of Il-76MD cargo aircraft that you can see in the clip, it could well be Melitopol airbase, in southeastern Ukraine, home of the 25th Transport Aviation Brigade. The Su-25M1 Frogfoot jets were probably operating out of Mykolaiv/Kulbakino airbase, to the west of Melitopol, home of the 299th Tactical Aviation Brigade.

U.S. Air National Guard conducts medical evacuation training with Ukrainian specialists – Defence Blog

U.S. Air National Guard Soldiers from the 146th Airlift Wing a conducted integration aeromedical evacuation training with Ukrainian specialists during the Clear Sky 2018, a multinational training exercise held at Clear Sky 18, Ukraine. The Clear Sky 2018 is a multinational military exercise with the participation of U.S. combat aircraft and takes place mainly at Starokostiantyniv and Vinnytsia Air Bases, and other training areas and ranges in Ukraine. Pararescuemen from the California Air National Guard instruct Ukrainian Military on executing the proper procedures for climbing a rope ladder affixed to a climbing tower. The training simulates being secured to a hovering helicopter as part of Clear Sky 2018, a multinational, flight-centered exercise held at Starokostiantyniv and Vinnytsia Air bases, Ukraine. Air National Guard members, including pararescuemen and aeromedical evacuation specialists, conduct training with Ukrainian counterparts as part of Exercise Clear Sky 2018, a multinational flight-centered exercise held at Vinnytsia Air base and during Media Day in Starokostiantyniv, Ukraine. It should be stated, really Ukraine is not NATO member, although relations with the alliance began in 1994. In 2014, following the Russian invasion and annexation of Crimea, Ukraine has been involved in a low-intensity conflict with Russian proxy forces in the east of the country, growing, as a consequence, cooperation with NATO. Besides Ukraine and the United States, Belgium, Denmark, Estonia, the Netherlands, Poland, Romania and the United Kingdom are participating in the exercise. Clear Sky 18 promotes regional stability and security, while strengthening partner capabilities and fostering trust. Оfficials of the U.S. Air National Guard states that Clear Sky 18 promotes regional stability and security, while strengthening partner capabilities and fostering trust.

California Air National Guard Super Hercules take part in joint exercise in Ukraine – Defence Blog

C-130J-30 Super Hercules tactical airlifter of the U.S. California Air National Guard, assigned to the 144th Fighter Wing, take part in the joint large-scale aviation exerciseClear Sky 2018 in Ukraine. During Media Day of the joint military exercise, the C-130J-30 Super Hercules tactical airlifter flew to Starokostiantyniv Air Base from Vinnytsia Air base in Ukraine to pick up Soldiers and tons of cargo. The C-130J-30 Super Hercules is a stretch version of the C-130J, a proven, highly reliable and affordable airlifter. The C-130J-30 adds 15 feet to the fuselage, increasing usable space (two more pallets of equipment) in the cargo compartment. The C-130J Super Hercules offers superior performance and modern capabilities, with the range and flexibility for every theater of operations and evolving requirements. A total of some 950 personnel are taking part in Clear Sky. Besides Ukraine and the United States, Belgium, Denmark, Estonia, the Netherlands, Poland, Romania and the United Kingdom are participating. The exercise takes place mainly at Starokostiantyniv Air Base, located about 150 miles southwest of Kiev, and other training areas and ranges in Ukraine. This exercise is an example of continued U.S. engagement promoting stability in the region. Clear Sky 18 provides the U.S. and its partners an opportunity to develop common solutions in promoting security.

U.S. Air Force shows its MQ-9 remotely piloted aircraft at exercise ‘Clear Sky 18’ – Defence Blog

For the first time, the MQ-9 Reaper remotely piloted aircraft has performed demonstrate its flying skill along during the multinational military exercise Clear Sky 2018 in Ukraine. The MQ-9 Reaper remotely piloted aircraft (N429HK registration, Manufacturer’s Serial Number FC429), assigned to Miroslawiec Air Base, Poland., flew over Starokostiantyniv Air Base during Media Dao of the Clear Sky 18 exercise. It was for the first time that the U.S.Air Force showed in flight its MQ-9 unmanned drone from in Ukrainian sky. The MQ-9 drone flew, accompanied by a pair of fighters F-16 Polish Air Force, from the military base Miroslawiec Air Base in Poland. The Reaper, a remotely piloted aircraft primarily designed for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance collection, can also perform close air support, combat search and rescue, precision strike and other critical functions, making it an indispensable tool. The MQ-9 model is designed by the General Atomics Aeronautical Systems to eliminate man hours on assembly time and reduce security concerns. According to the General Atomics, Reaper has an endurance of over 27 hours, speeds of 240 KTAS(abbreviation for knots true airspeed, a unit of speed measurement), can operate up to 50,000 feet, and has a 3,850 pound (1746 kilogram) payload capacity that includes 3,000 pounds (1361 kilograms) of external stores. An extremely reliable aircraft, MQ-9 is equipped with a fault-tolerant flight control system and triple redundant avionics system architecture. It is engineered to meet and exceed manned aircraft reliability standards. MQ-9 Reaper is powered by the flight-certified and proven Honeywell TPE331-10 turboprop engine, integrated with Digital Electronic Engine Control (DEEC), which significantly improves engine performance and fuel efficiency, particularly at low altitudes. The aircraft is highly modular and is configured easily with a variety of payloads to meet mission requirements. MQ-9 Reaper is capable of carrying multiple mission payloads to include: Electro-optical/Infrared (EO/IR), Lynx® Multi-mode Radar, multi-mode maritime surveillance radar, Electronic Support Measures (ESM), laser designators, and various weapons packages.

Ukraine’s Embassy in U.S. extends condolences to families of Su-27 crash victims – 19.10.2018 11:46 — Ukrinform News

Ukraine’s Embassy in the United States has expressed condolences to the family of U.S. pilot Seth “Jethro” Nehring, who died in a plane crash during the Clear Sky 2018 exercise in Ukraine on October 16, and thanked the United States for supporting the Ukrainian army. “Ambassador Valeriy Chaly and diplomats from Ukraine’s Embassy in the United States extended their deepest condolences to the families and friends of the deceased pilots – a serviceman of the Ukrainian Air Force and a serviceman of the California Air National Guard, who died in a tragic accident of the Ukrainian Su-27 fighter at the international air exercise Clear Sky 2018,” the embassy said in a statement on Thursday, October 18. The embassy stressed that Ukraine and the U.S. are now interacting to investigate the causes of this tragedy. “We are grateful to the United States of America for the unwavering support of Ukraine and the significant assistance of the Ukrainian army in raising the level of training of our military,” the statement reads. At the same time, according to the report, conducting such large-scale military exercises in Ukraine with the participation of NATO member states is “a powerful tool in strengthening international security in the region and in the world, as well as in a common resistance to Russian aggression.”

UAWire – President Poroshenko says Ukrainian military should use all available means to respond to enemy attacks in Donbas

Ukrainian military can return fire using all kinds of weapons that are at hand, said Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko during a meeting with …

Poroshenko: Combat-capable army is immunity against external pressure and fifth column inside country – 13.10.2018 14:20 — Ukrinform News

Ukraine has the army capable of protecting the state from the aggressor, powerful pressure from outside and the fifth column inside the country.

Poroshenko: If anyone offers Putin territory in exchange for peace, they will get neither | UNIAN

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko says that if anyone offers Putin territory in exchange for peace, they will have neither peace nor territory. Russian President Vladimir Putin’s strategy is seeing a complete fiasco, as he has close to no allies worldwide, he has got a deep economic crisis in his country, and he just cannot explain why they needed to unleash the war against a friendly neighboring country.

Donbas update: Ukraine reports 16 enemy attacks in past 24 hours | UNIAN

Russian-led forces mounted 16 attacks on Ukrainian troops in Donbas, eastern Ukraine, in the last 24 hours. There have been no Ukrainian army casualties in the past day.

Militants launched 37 attacks on Ukrainian troops in Donbas in last day – 16.10.2018 09:30 — Ukrinform News

Russian-backed militants launched 37 attacks, using weapons banned under the Minsk agreements nine times, on positions of Ukrainian troops in the Joint Forces Operation (JFO) area in Donbas in last day.&nbsp;

Kyiv Says Five Killed In Fighting In Eastern Ukraine

Ukraine says two of its soldiers have been killed and one wounded as a result of clashes with Russia-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine.

Kyiv Says Ukrainian Soldier, Two Separatist Fighters Killed In East

Ukraine says one of its soldiers has been killed and three wounded as a result of clashes with Russia-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine.

Crew of Ukrainian Mi-24 helicopter shot down Russian drone – Defence Blog

On 13 October, the crew of the Ukrainian Mi-24 attack helicopter shot down the Russian-made Orlan-10 UAV over along the Lysychansk-Severodonetsk in eastern Ukraine, the Joint Forces Operation (JFO) press center has reported. According to JFO’s statement, the Russian drone maneuvered, performing a reconnaissance flight along the Lysychansk-Severodonetsk route. “The JFO commander Lieutenant-General Serhiy Nayev made a decision to destroy the target by attracting a Mi-24 helicopter of fire support operations,” said in JFO. The drone was shot down at 09:58 near the settlement of Borovske (Luhansk region). Subunits of the ground forces of the JFO found its fragments and identified them. The downed drone was identified as the Orlan-10 unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) developed by Russian industry, which is on service with the armed forces of the Russian Federation.

UAWire – Ukrainian Mi-24 helicopter downs another Russian drone in Donbas

On Saturday October 13, the crew of a Joint Forces Mi-24 helicopter shot down an Orlan-10 drone in the Donbas, the kind of drone used by the Russian Armed Forces, the headquarters of the Joint Forces Operation (JFO) reports. “In the sky over Lysychansk at 8:09, radar instruments detected an airborne target, presumably identified as an Orlan-10 unmanned aerial vehicle, which is in the armament of the Russian Armed Forces,” the report states. According to the JFO, the object maneuvered in a way which indicated it was carrying out a reconnaissance flight along the Lysychansk – Severodonetsk route. “Immediately the on-duty anti-air defense forces were brought to military alert number one. Joint Forces Commander Lieutenant-General Serhiy Nayev made the decision to destroy the target using a Mi-24 fire support helicopter,” the report notes. The on-duty helicopter crew was scrambled at 8:45, and took off to intercept the airborne target. After identifying it visually, the helicopter began to pursue it. The Russian drone changed its altitude and course frequently, but this was not enough to save it, the article notes. “At 9:58, the Orlan-10 belonging to the Russian occupation forces was shot down in the region of the Borivske settlement. By as early as 10:10, Joint Forces ground troops divisions had found and identified its wreckage,” the JFO headquarters adds. The day before, the anti-air defense forces had detected two drones crossing the demarcation line and heading towards the Lysychansk oil refinery plant. One of them was shot down, but the other escaped into territory not controlled by Ukraine.

Ukrainian military hit militants’ drone in Luhansk region – 112.international

Ukrainian militaries hit the drone of the militants above Lysychansk, Luhansk region

End to war in Donbas looks as far away as ever – media | UNIAN

Although the world’s attention has shifted, Ukrainians still see the war as the country’s most important issue, surpassing corruption and the economy. Even peace talks have ground to a halt.

Experts discover new evidence of presence of Russian military hardware in Donbas – 15.10.2018 12:55 — Ukrinform News

The experts from the Atlantic Council’s Digital Forensic Research Lab have analyzed photographs and found new evidence of the presence of modern Russian military hardware in the occupied territories of Donbas.

55,000 women serving now in Ukrainian Armed Forces – 13.10.2018 14:57 — Ukrinform News

President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko has recalled that the Defender of Ukraine Day is a holiday both for men and women who protect their homeland.

Two “DNR ministers” surrender to Ukraine. Will the rest follow? |Euromaidan Press |

In August and September the Security Service of Ukraine reported that two former ministers of the “Donetsk People’s Republic,” one of two Russian-run statelets in the east of Ukraine, surrendered to Ukrainian law enforcers. The agency didn’t disclose their names, but it was possible to identify them as Yuri Lekstutes and Aliya Kamara, who were members to the “DNR minister soviet” back in 2014, but were arrested in December of the same year and spent some time behind bars in occupied Donetsk under accusations of embezzlement and authority abuse. They are first high-profile “officials” from the Moscow-run statelets in the east of Ukraine who chose to surrender to Ukraine instead of fleeing to Russia. Can such cases become a tendency and under what circumstances?

Poltorak quits military service, continues to lead Defense ministry as civilian – Poroshenko | UNIAN

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko says he has dismissed Defense Minister Stepan Poltorak from military service, however, the latter will continue to lead the ministry as civilian. According to the law on national security, a civilian must hold the position of Ukraine’s Defense Minister starting from January 1, 2019.

UAWire – Ukrainian President appoints first female army general

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko signed six orders to confer the rank of general. Among them, receiving the title of major general, is …

Munitions worth more than $2B destroyed by fire at ammo dumps over 2.5 years, MP Pashynskyi says | Censor.NET

16.10.18 14:52 – Munitions worth more than $2B destroyed by fire at ammo dumps over 2.5 years, MP Pashynskyi says Over the past two and a half years, ordnance worth more than $2 billion has been destroyed in fires at Ukraine’s arms depots. View news.

Ministry of Defense opens Memorial Hall for Defenders of Ukraine – 112.international

The Memorial Hall for the Defenders of Ukraine was opened in the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine with the participation of the leadership of the country, 112 Ukraine was broadcasting the event. Relatives of the dead Ukrainian military, President Petro Poroshenko, Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman, Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine Oleksandr Turchynov and the clerics were at the ceremony.

Alexander Hug, Principal Deputy Chief Monitor of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine – 17.10.2018 17:30 — Ukrinform News

This violence can end very quickly, if politicians, wearing suits, not uniforms, make the right decisions

UAWire – Yarosh announces withdrawal of volunteers from the frontline in the Donbas

Participants of the Ukrainian Volunteer Army (UVA) are leaving the frontline in Donbas, stated Commander Dmytro Yarosh, former leader of the Right Sector. “This day I announce that the 5th and 8th separate battalions of the Ukrainian Volunteer Army are leaving the frontline but we are not leaving the war. As long as there is a war, we will participate in it,” he said. According to Yarosh, the UVA is now planning to establish resistance “in any area” and unite those who took part in the military operation in the Donbas. Yarosh stated that many military volunteer organizations have been formed in Ukraine that they have huge potential that “can be important for Ukraine”.

More details about Ukraine’s new tactical ballistic missile revealed – Defence Blog

Yuzhnoye State Design Office confirmed to Defence Blog’s during the Arms and Security annual exhibition that the company has had some success in development of the new Grom-2 tactical ballistic missile system. The Grom-2 mobile short-range tactical ballistic missile system is equipped with two short-range ballistic missiles. It is a solid-propellant missile that has a maximum range 280 km and minimal 50 km. The Grom-2 will have several different conventional warheads, including cluster and high-explosive. New tactical missile system will have a new guidance system with a self-contained inertial navigation complex and optical seeker that enables it to hit targets in day and night with a high level of accuracy. It has a target accuracy of 5m to 15m and operates even in fog or low visibility. The basic version of the missile will carry payload capacity of up to 480 kg of conventional warheads or 54 combat submunitions of 7.5 kg each. The Grom-2 also was designed to overcome air defense systems, a missile can follow an aeroballistic path at altitudes from 11 to 50 km, performing evasive maneuvers in the terminal phase of flight to penetrate missile defense systems. The transport-erector-launcher (TEL) vehicle based on the new-developed 10×10 chassis carries two tactical ballistic missiles. The TEL is powered by a Deutz diesel engine delivering a power output of 600 hp. Full missile system also includes command vehicle, information preparation vehicle, maintenance and repair vehicle and life support vehicle. The first test launch of the new tactical missile is scheduled for the second half of 2019.

Grom-2 TBM System: Test of Terminal Seeker Has Been Completed – Український мілітарний портал

During this year’s International Specialized Exhibition of Defense, Armament, Military and Specialty Equipment, Technologies and Dual-Use Goods “Weapon and Security 2018”, the State Design Bureau “Yuzhnye” presented the developed joint with SATS Ltd., the head of the homing for the Sapsan operational / tactical complex / Thunder-2 In general, four types of seeker have been developed:

  • electro-optical seeker
  • infrared seeker
  • radar seeker
  • multimode seeker which includes the capabilities of electro-optical and radar, which operates in the 3-mm range

From them, the electron-optical, radar and combined terminal seekers in the aviation-technical complex were presented at the exhibition: The images are used to process the software for the preparation of reference images and software for comparison algorithms for reference images obtained from self-reference heads (GSO) images. Test housing:

  1. rotary frame with actuator and protective cover
  2. Optical-electronic seeker (0.6 ÷ 0.9 μm)
  3. radar seeker (W)
  4. complex seeker (W + 0,3 ÷ 1,07 microns)
  5. automated workplace of ATK operator

All these seekers have already passed the tests, how they work can be found in more detail in the video of the Director of Information and Consulting Company Defense Express Serhiy Sarget:

Why the Ukrainian OTRK “Sapsan” will be cooler than the Russian “Iskander” – YouTube

serhiy zgurets Published on Oct 18, 2018 The design office Yuzhnoye from the city of Dnepr is actively working on the creation of a new operational-tactical missile system. OTRK in the export version of the “Thunder-2” must hit targets at a distance of 300 km. In a more “swinging” version for the Ukrainian army, the arm of retaliation of the Sapsan PTRC may well reach the milestone of 500 km. There are all prerequisites for this. New parts became known during the arms exhibition “Zbroya and Bezpeka 2018”, which was held last week in Kiev. For the creation of our new OTRK the outside world is watching closely. Americans – forced-permissive. The Arabs, for whom OTRK is needed the faster, the better – expectantly-expectantly. Enemies because of the bureaucrats while crooked in an anxious grin. At the same time, self-propelled launchers and other machines of the new missile complex are already winding up kilometers at test ranges, checking the reliability of components and assemblies. The engines of rockets with new domestic fuel have been annealed and are ready for testing in a more serious format. Also preparing for tests and missile warheads. There is a difficult and large-scale work – taking into account the fact that not everything works out the first time. Although it may be of little interest to those who are sure that the climax of the creation of a new type of weapon is its participation in a military parade. The cooperation in the production includes the leading enterprises of the country, both public and private. I will name only a few. This is a developer and integrator – Yuzhnoye Design Bureau, Pavlohorradsky Chemical Plant, Hartron, Tekon-Electron, SATS, Kharkiv Engineering Design Bureau (Ukroboronprom Group of Companies), where they created a running platform for the SPU and TZM complex with significant carrying capacity and mobility, its turning radius is not too inferior to the BTR 8×8. As on the Independence Day, the new 10×10 platform aroused keen interest at the Zbroy and Bezpeka 2018 exhibition. But much more important and significant was the fact that it stood in the shadow of the green colossus of the start-up of the Sapsan OTRK. Namely, for the first time, new homing heads for an operational-tactical missile of Ukrainian development presented for general review. In order to see, recognize and assurely hit the target, four types of homing heads were developed for the Ukrainian Sapsan and the Thunder-2 missiles: electro-optical, infrared, radar and combined radar operating in the range of about 3 mm. All of them have been tested. Some of these seekers and was shown at the arms exhibition in Kiev. Who wanted – saw. But more than that – I was shown the process, how and why these missiles will precisely destroy enemy objects in any conditions. Therefore, within reason, I will share new interesting details. People from Yuzhnoye Design Bureau, who are responsible for ensuring that the new missile hits the target day and night, in winter and summer, told me that they had already achieved a result that is better than that of the Russian tactical complex Iskander . In the export version, the same Iskander is equipped with an optical homing head, and the rocket itself deviates from the target (KVO) within 5-10 m. It is clear that the more precisely the better. Since the potential of the warhead with a higher accuracy hit also increases. “We are talking today about the deviation from the target within 0-2 meters. To solve this problem, leading mathematicians of our country were involved, ”the specialists of Yuzhnoyy Design Bureau explained to me. Mathematicians and programmers are needed in order to connect the “eyes” – the homing head – with the “brains” of the rocket and the complex. Anyone interested in other technical details – watch my video of the new homing heads for the operational-tactical missile system Sapsan / Grom and their creators on my website zgurets.com in the framework of the Zbroyari project.

The GMLRS “Vilkha” was adopted

The missile complex “Vylcha” was adopted by the Armed Forces of Ukraine and sent to serial production – the relevant agreement has already been concluded. The general director of KB “Luch” Oleg Korostelov told in an interview for Tsensor.NET . ” In addition, “Vilky” will be a foreign customer. After all, we did not just make the missile of the same name for use on the basis of the old Soviet SZRV “Smerch”. We have changed the entire guidance system in it. The arrival of the complex to the Ukrainian troops is expected in mid-2019. Recall that the state tests of the missile complex “Vielha” were completed in April this year.

Ukrainian Armed-Drone Makers Sprint Ahead as Russian Effort Hits Snag – Defense One

The Ukrainians are eagerly off showing a proposed long-range UAV while uncertainty surrounds Russia’s Altius program.

BB-2 helicopter from “SOFTEX-INVEST” – YouTube

serhiy zgurets Published on Oct 12, 2018 The BB-2 helicopter from “OFTEX-INVEST” is one of the novelties of the weapons exhibition “Zbroya and Bezpeka 2018”.

The Ukrainian Army continues profound modernization of armament and military equipment – President | Міноборони

During the meeting with the commanders of the brigades and other units of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, the National Guard of Ukraine, the State Border Service of Ukraine, President, Supreme Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces Petro Poroshenko noted that four years ago, Ukraine defended itself “exclusively with the remnants of armament and military equipment that we inherited from the Soviet Army”. The Head of State stressed that due to the concentration of efforts, purposeful and persistent work of the employees of the defense industry enterprises, about 1900 units of new or modernized armament and military equipment were supplied to the troops only this year. The President recalled that in 2014, there was no reliable connection in the army. “You know this better than anyone else. Analogue connection could be blocked by the Russian occupation troops easily. We could not dream that the army would change drastically in four years,” Petro Poroshenko said. “I ask the army and the public to clearly understand that the modernization program is designed not for weeks, not for months, but for years. We are going ahead of the schedule with some types of weapons. The key is that we started this process, which has been frozen since independence,” the President said. The President drew the commanders’ attention to the fact that the provision of the troops with modern weapons and military equipment requires more responsible and serious approaches to its use, constant training of crews and calculations, strict observance of the rules of its use and safety.

Ukroboronprom negotiates on expansion of military cooperation with United States – 13.10.2018 12:54 — Ukrinform News

The delegation of the State Concern Ukroboronprom, the association of Ukrainian military-industrial complex enterprises, arrived in the United States to discuss the expansion of defense equipment supplies to Ukraine, including defensive weapons, as well as to negotiate on joint projects in this area.

UAWire – President Poroshenko announces construction of fifteen new ammunition storage facilities in Ukraine

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko announced the planned construction of fifteen ammunition storage facilities in Ukraine with automatic security systems. Poroshenko elaborated on the plans during his address to the participants of Clear Sky 2018 international military exercises, the President’s press service reported. According to the President, Ukraine sorely lacks modern storage facilities for ammunitions. “This year, we will begin the construction of fifteen modern storages with automatic security systems… with automatic fire protection and alarm systems that will reduce the human error factor to almost zero,” he said. Moreover, Poroshenko announced that he would visit the depot in Tsvitokha, Khmelnytskyi region. “The reconstruction is being carried out in full compliance with NATO standards: 37 concrete storages, 70 km of electricity networks, 20 km of waterlines, 15 km of surfaced roads.” Poroshenko emphasized that 1.15 billion hryvnia ($410 million USD) was dedicated to that one project. The new ammunition storage facilities are being constructed in the wake of recent incidents in Balakliia and Kalynivka where antiquated military installations caught fire and sustained severe damage.

USUBC president: American defense enterprises ready for broader cooperation with Ukraine – 16.10.2018 10:50 — Ukrinform News

The security and defense cooperation between the countries now focuses mainly on the supply of ground systems, President of the US-Ukraine Business Council, Morgan Williams said in a commentary to an Ukrinform correspondent during a press conference in Washington. In this regard, Williams mentioned the supply of 80 Humvee vehicles to Ukraine. “It is only the beginning. We expect broader cooperation [between the defense ministries of Ukraine and the United States] with the participation of the American private defense industry enterprises,” the USUBC president emphasized. He also recalled the transfer of two patrol boats of the U.S. Coast Guard to Ukraine, which became possible due to a direct contract between the defense ministers of the two countries. “In our opinion, there is also a need for much closer cooperation [with Ukraine] in maritime security amid the situation in the Sea of Azov and the Black Sea,” Williams stressed. He also expressed hope for the establishment of greater cooperation between the government and defense industry enterprises in Ukraine. In the current settings, Ukraine needs more defensive capabilities to deter Russian aggression in the region, the USUBC president noted.

Lithuania and Ukraine join forces to further FinTech development – Emerging Europe

U.S. opens sky over Dnipro, Zaporizhia, Kharkiv, part Black Sea air space

The Federal Aviation Administration of the United States (FAA) has lifted a ban on American airlines flying to the airports of Dnipro, Zaporizhia and Kharkiv, as well as in the controlled part of the airspace over the Black Sea, the press service of the Infrastructure Ministry reported on Friday.

U.S. allows airlines to resume flights to Ukraine airports, Black Sea routes – Reuters | UNIAN

The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration said Thursday it would allow U.S. airlines and codeshare partners to resume flights at three Ukrainian airports and over parts of the Black Sea, citing improved safety and security in parts of Ukraine. The FAA said security and safety conditions “have sufficiently stabilized in certain regions of Ukraine” to allow for additional flight operations.

Turchynov: Russia will try to use elections in Ukraine for its hybrid aggression – 18.10.2018 12:47 — Ukrinform News

Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council (NSDC) of Ukraine Oleksandr Turchynov has said there are reasonable grounds to believe that the Russian Federation will try to influence on the election process in Ukraine, the NSDC press service reports.

UAWire – Ukrainian Security Service claims to have thwarted new malware attack planned by Russia

The Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) reported that a group of hackers controlled by the Russian special services attempted to attack Ukraine …

SBU: Russia tried to attack Ukraine with Exaramel malware – LB.ua news portal

SBU: Russia tried to attack Ukraine with Exaramel malware. The threat was identified by ESET. Political – LB.ua news portal. Latest from Ukraine and the world today

Ukraine’s security service uncovers Russian spies, corrupt judge – To Inform is to Influence

By Denys Krasnikov. Published Oct. 13 at 2:50 pm Ukraine’s Security Service, the SBU, has caught two local officials in Ukraine’s east who were spying for Russia. The SBU claims that the two men had been working in the local government of Zaporizhzhya — a city some 500 kilometers southeast of Kyiv, near the Donbas —…

SBU exposes Russian spies among officials of Zaporizhia region – 112.international

SBU exposed the representatives of the local authorities in Zaporizhia region who cooperated with Russian intelligence

Ukrainian Nationalists Commemorate Controversial Paramilitary

Supporters of Ukrainian nationalist groups marched on October 14 in downtown Kyiv to mark the anniversary of the establishment of the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA) in 1942, officially marked in the country as the Day of Ukraine’s Defenders. The UPA was a paramilitary group fighting both against the Soviets and the Germans in World War II. The UPA was founded in western Ukraine during the Nazi occupation of the country in World War II and fought against both the Nazis and the Soviet Red Army. Its fighters carried out vicious acts of ethnic cleansing in which tens of thousands of ethnic Poles in the region were killed.

Ukrainian nationalists honor WWII-era [UPA] paramilitary group – ABC News

About 10,000 people have marched through the capital of Ukraine in an annual nationalist commemoration of the formation of the World War II-era Ukrainian Insurgent Army. About 1,000 police officers were deployed for the Defender of Ukraine Day march. Demonstrators lit colorful flares and shouted slogans such as “We are returning Ukraine to Ukrainians.” There was a scuffle when riot police intervened to stop some protesters attempting to destroy a Soviet-era monument near the parliament building.

German neo-Nazis march with Ukrainian nationalists in UPA march |Euromaidan Press |

On 14 October 2018, a relatively peaceful march to commemorate the UPA, Ukraine’s WWII-era Insurgent Army, was held in Kyiv, where roughly 15,000 nationalists, according to the police, marched through the Ukrainian capital. Apart from veterans of the Donbas war, many Ukrainian right-wing parties took part, among them: Right Sector, Svoboda, National Corps (founded on the base of the Azov regiment and civic movements surrounding it), Congress of Ukrainian Nationalists, activists of C14 and others. However, not only Ukrainian parties took part: German media noted the participation of Junge Nationalisten, the youth wing of the most radical extreme-right Germany party NPD, which is usually described as Neonazi, in the mix. The participants set a record in simultaneous singing of the anthem of the interwar Organization of the Ukrainian Nationalists (over 8000 people), chanted “Bandera is our hero,” “Glory to Ukraine, glory to the heroes,” “One united Ukraine,” “Pokrova [Intercession – a Christian holiday observed on the day – Ed] is our holiday,” “Heroes don’t die -the moskals [derogatory name for Russians – Ed] do” etc. The march was held under the slogan “Ukraine for Ukrainians.”

Ukraine Europe’s poorest country – IMF report – news about economy

Ukraine is the poorest country in Europe according to data from the new report of the International Monetary Fund, said Volodymyr Kompaniets, an economist who manages a private investment fund in the U.S. stock market. Ukraine also ranks last in Europe by the size of the official average salary.

Ukraine, Japan hold security consultations – 13.10.2018 11:34 — Ukrinform News

The first Ukrainian-Japanese security consultations were held in Tokyo on October 12.

European Court Extends Decision To Ban Ukrainian Authorities’ Access To Journalist’s Phone

The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) has extended a decision made last month to prevent Ukrainian authorities from accessing data from RFE/RL investigative reporter Natalia Sedletska’s mobile …

‘High-Profile’ Fugitive From Ukraine Who Faked Death Held In France

A “high-profile fugitive” from Ukraine who faked his death and lived a “lavish lifestyle” in France has been arrested, the European Union law enforcement agency Europol says.

American actor and politician Arnold Schwarzenegger arrived in Kyiv – Arnold Schwarzenegger arrives in Kyiv – 112.international

American actor and politician Arnold Schwarzenegger arrived in Kyiv

Crimean Strays Find Love At A Makeshift Shelter

Anna Veselovskaya gave up her apartment in Simferopol, Crimea, to buy land where she can keep dozens of sick, injured, or abandoned cats and dogs and nurse them back to health.

New dimensions of Hungary-Ukraine conflict – LB.ua news portal

Despite Kyiv’s conciliatory tone and attempts to diffuse tension in relations with Hungary, Budapest is interested in escalating the situation as much as possible in order to mobilize voters in Transcarpathian Region against the current Ukrainian government at the next presidential and parliamentary elections. Therefore, Kyiv has only one option left, that is to cut the ground from under Budapest’s arbitrariness in Ukraine’s Transcarpathian region in order to prevent it from drawing local residents into the political games of the Hungarian authorities.

Hungary escalating tensions with Ukraine, playing along with Russia – media | UNIAN

After the shocking video was released revealing a scene where Ukrainians in the Hungarian Consulate in Zakarpattia’s Berehove were issued Hungarian passports and instructed to conceal the fact before the Ukrainian authorities, Peter Szijjarto, Hungary’s top diplomat, chose a tactic of escalating the confrontation. Hungarian officials get very nervous when accused of coordinating their moves with Moscow. After the shocking video was released revealing a scene where Ukrainians in the Hungarian Consulate in Zakarpattia’s Berehove were issued Hungarian passports and instructed to conceal the fact before the Ukrainian authorities, Peter Szijjarto, Hungary’s top diplomat, chose a tactic of escalating the confrontation. Although this is hardly his own initiative as the aggravation of relations with Ukraine is the policy of the entire current political class in Hungary, LB.ua wrote. This is evidenced by a recent visit of a Hungarian delegation to Transcarpathian Region, which included Secretary of State for National Policy Arpad Janos Potapi, the head of the Transcarpathian department at the State Secretariat of Hungary, Katalin Ljubka, the head of the office of state secretary Z. Kadar, as well as Hungary’s general consuls in Uzhhorod – Jozsef Buhajla – and in Berehove – Matias Siladi. During their visit to Ukraine, they held confidential talks on the current situation with the administration of the Hungarian Culture Society of Transcarpathian Region and the Democratic Union of Hungarians of Ukraine. They said Budapest was investigating the leak of a scandalous video from the consulate in Berehove, showing Transcarpathian residents being issued Hungarian passports and asked to keep it secret. Hungarian special services are running thorough checks on those who apply for fast-tracked citizenship.

Hungary escalating tensions with Ukraine, plays along with Russia – media | UNIAN

After the shocking video was released revealing a scene where Ukrainians in the Hungarian Consulate in Zakarpattia’s Berehove were issued Hungarian passports and instructed to conceal the fact before the Ukrainian authorities, Peter Szijjarto, Hungary’s top diplomat, chose a tactic of escalating the confrontation. Hungarian officials get very nervous when accused of coordinating their moves with Moscow.

UAWire – Media: Hungary continues issuing passports to Ukrainian citizens

The LB.ua news outlet reports that Hungary did not stop issuing passports to Ukrainian citizens but only moved this solemn ceremony to its …

UAWire – Hungarian Foreign Minister accuses Ukraine of playing along with ‘extremists’

Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto said that the Ukrainian parliament plays into the hands of the &quot;extremists&quot; in the matter of the …

Hungarian NGO spreading fake about persecution of national minorities in Ukraine – media | UNIAN

Hungarian NGO Guttenberg Pal Nepfoiskola is spreading a fake in social networks about the persecution of national minorities in Ukraine. The organization that deals with cultural projects began to deliberately spread lies and foment hatred.

Klimkin: Budapest’s position on language harms ethnic Hungarians in Ukraine | UNIAN

Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin says the current position of Budapest regarding the language harms ethnic Hungarians in Ukraine. Klimkin says he has never acted against the Hungarian community.

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