Anonymous expert compilation, analysis, and reporting.
NATO meeting in progress, SECGEN comments on Russia and INF. New sanctions being prepared for Russia. Good essay by Soros on European unity. Germany to build two LNG terminals on the North coast for importing gas. Zakharova attacks the Netherlands and Australia over MH17. Muscovy threatens FB and Twitter demanding access to user data. Kozlov on the rapid assimilation of expat ethnic Russians.
SECSTATE Pompeo comments on sanctions over Salisbury attack. Bulgaria reopens poisoning case.
Thirteen articles and analyses on Crimea and Azov Sea. Detailed analysis by Hurska. Vasilyev on the exodus of long term ethnic Russian residents of Crimea to Ukraine, being displaced by newly arrived Russian transmigrants. Donbas update. General Staff restructures to achieve NATO compliance underway.
KB Luch chief designer Korostelev interviewed in detail on the Vilkha GMLRS and Neptun ASCM/GLCM/ALCM programs – the new disclosure is that Luch is starting development of an air-launched Neptun with the FENCER D the designated launch platform. The interview confirms earlier statements that a land attack capability is being developed concurrently, and that range will be 300 km. Full-rate production of the Vilkha GMLRS is underway and Korostelev states the much higher accuracy makes it more effective than the 9K79 Tochka U / SS-21 SCARAB TBM. Russian analyst Khlopotov rates the upgraded T-64B MBT as considerably better than the primary Russian T-72B3 MBT. Berezutsky briefs media on the Izdeliya 477 Nota MBT and discloses Saudi interest in this design.
Politics, history news. DNA analysis connects ancient Celts from Ireland with Ukraine. Handziuk case update, pro-Russian politician bails pro-Russian police officer. Election update.
Churches: Ukrainian border forces strip ROC bishop of his Ukrainian passport and refuse to let him return to Ukraine, following public anti-Ukrainian statements. Russian shuts down OCU in Ukraine.
NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg has said the alliance is studying a “wide range of options” to deal with alleged Russian violations of a major arms-control agreement, while U.S. Secretary o…
During a briefing with Russian media, the NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg stated that NATO intends to increase its military presence in the Black Sea in response to “Russia’s violation of international norms.” According to him, Moscow’s construction of a bridge over the Kerch Strait does not meet international laws since Russia’s control over Crimea was established illegally. “The unlawful detention of Ukrainian sailors [in November 2018] and seizing of ships increased our concerns about Russian violations,” said Stoltenberg. In this context, NATO will continue to “provide Ukraine with practical support” and will increase presence in the Black Sea region, added the Secretary-General of the Alliance. On the morning of November 25, Ukraine informed the Russian port of its intention to transfer three ships through the Kerch Strait, as required by the Agreement on the joint use of the Azov Sea and Kerch Strait. However, at around 8:00 a.m., Russian ships carried out acts of provocation against the Ukrainian vessels, even ramming into the Yany Kapu tugboat.
NATO is concerned about Russia’s unmanned underwater vehicle "Poseidon", said Alliance Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, answering BBC’s …
A bipartisan group of U.S. senators has introduced a bill to the U.S. Senate to strengthen the economic, political and diplomatic pressure on Russia. — Ukrinform.
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo held a telephone conversation with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, during which he announced …
On Wednesday, a group of US senators put forward a bill that envisages additional sanctions against Russia in response to “Russian interference in the operation of democratic institutes abroad” and for its aggression in Ukraine. According to a statement published by the Senate’s foreign affairs committee, the document was authored by republicans Lindsey Graham and Cory Gardner and democrats Bob Menendez, Ben Cardin and Jeanne Shaheen. The list of sanctions proposed by the senators has two parts. The first includes sanctions for Russia’s “interference in democratic institutes abroad”. The sanctions will target “the Russian banks that support Russia’s efforts to undermine democratic institutes in other countries”. In addition, the senators consider it necessary to introduce sanctions that target Russia’s international liquefied natural gas projects abroad, as well as sanctions on Russian sovereign debt. The senators also propose to place sanctions on Russia’s cyber sector. These will also include sanctions against Russian “political figures, oligarchs and their family members, as well as other entities that facilitate illegal and corrupt activities”. The other part of the sanctions concern Russia’s aggression in Ukraine. In this regard, the senators suggest that sanctions be imposed on “24 FSB employees who are believed to have been involved” in the capture of Ukrainian sailors in the Kerch Strait.
The first step to defending Europe from its enemies, both internal and external, is to recognize the magnitude of the threat they present. The second is to awaken the sleeping pro-European majority and mobilize it to defend the values on which the EU was founded.
At the Bogorodica border crossing with Greece, Macedonian workers on Wednesday placed stencils on road signs bearing their country’s official new name, the Republic of North Macedonia, making a first step in implementing a landmark deal with Athens.
Germany intends to build at least two terminals capable of receiving imported liquefied natural gas, said German Minister for Economic Affairs and Energy, Peter Altmaier, at the German-American conference in Berlin, reports Der Spiegel. Both terminals will be built in the north part of the country. The publication notes that the government is considering Brunsbüttel, Stade and Wilhelmshaven locations. In addition, according to the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy, the conditions for the construction of appropriate infrastructure should be arranged. At the moment, Germany does not have its own liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminals, but after Berlin abandoned nuclear power and coal mining, Germany has to rely on natural gas. Currently, it is supplied to the country mainly from the Netherlands, Russia and Norway.
In Germany, two LPG terminals are to be built. That’s what US President Trump, who sees Europe as a growth market for liquefied natural gas, is facing. Federal Minister of Economics Peter Altmaier wants to increase the security of the German energy supply with new terminals by means of foreign deliveries of liquefied natural gas (LNG). The direct import to Germany could contribute to the diversification of the gas supply, Altmaier said at the German-American conference on the development of the LNG import market in Berlin. He assumes that at least two terminals will be built in northern Germany. The locations Brunsbüttel, Stade and Wilhelmshaven are currently being discussed. In addition, the framework conditions for the construction of an appropriate infrastructure to be adjusted, announced his ministry. For example, transmission system operators should be required to set up the necessary connections and to connect the terminals. The costs should be refinanced via the gas network charges without any delay and passed on to the network users. By summer, a corresponding legislative process should be completed. Germany does not yet have an LNG terminal, but will increasingly rely on natural gas because of the nuclear and coal withdrawal. So far, it mainly comes from lines from the Netherlands, Russia and Norway . US President Donald Trump wants to expand the liquefied gas business – which can be transported across the oceans with tankers – and sees Europe as a growth market. Not least because of this he has spoken out against the Baltic Sea pipeline Nord Stream 2 for gas deliveries from Russia because he wants to sell more American LPG to Europe. The US government and congress have repeatedly threatened sanctions against German companies involved in the Nord Stream 2 project.
The approval of amendments to the EU Gas Directive sets the legal framework for the functioning of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline according to EU norms, but does not remove security risks and can make Russia’s behavior even more aggressive, Ukraine’s Deputy Foreign Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration Olha Zerkal has reported on Facebook. — Ukrinform.
Spokesperson for Russia’s Foreign Ministry Maria Zakharova has dubbed reports about Russia’s readiness to plead guilty to the downing of Malaysia’s MH17 in eastern Ukraine a “dishonest fantasy.” Zakharova said Australia and the Netherlands, without waiting for the outcome of the investigation, had accused Russia of involvement in the downing of MH17 and demanded a consultation. Spokesperson for Russia’s Foreign Ministry Maria Zakharova has dubbed reports about Russia’s readiness to plead guilty to the downing of Malaysia’s MH17 in eastern Ukraine a “dishonest fantasy.” “A loose interpretation of the statement by the Foreign Ministry as if Russia, by giving consent to consultations [with the Netherlands and Australia], demonstrates readiness to plead guilty to the Malaysian Boeing crash – these are just a dishonest fantasy. The same applies to reports about the possibility of discussing some compensation as a way to atone for the guilt. These are fakes,” she said at a briefing in Moscow, according to an UNIAN correspondent in Russia. She said Australia and the Netherlands, without waiting for the outcome of the investigation, had accused Russia of involvement in the downing of MH17 and demanded a consultation as an ultimatum.
By the end of February, the Federal Service for Supervision of Communications, Information Technology and Mass Media (Roskomandzor) will officially require Facebook and Twitter to localize the databases of Russian users in Russia. If Facebook and Twitter refuse to do so, they “will be punished”, Alexander Zharov, the head of Roskomandzor, told reporters. As reported by Interfax, Zharov said that they would make a decision on Twitter or Facebook on February 21 and sign relevant protocols. The companies will be given a certain time period to localize databases. If they refuse to do so, they will be punished. Zharov said that representatives of Twitter had previously expressed a willingness to meet with Roskomandzor “at a mutually convenient time”. “They [Twitter representatives] are expected to turn up by the end of winter,” the head of Roskomandzor said.
Paul Goble Staunton, February 13 – Three poll results announced today, two in Russia and one in Ukraine, merit particular notice because they suggest the directions the peoples and their respective countries are likely to be heading in the coming months and even years. They are as follows: · A Levada Center poll finds that 71 percent of Russians believe that elections are important and a means to change policies in their country, a clear rebuke to the dismissive attitude about them that Vladislav Surkov has just displayed (politsovet.ru/61801-rossiyane-hotyat-izmenit-situaciyu-v-strane-s-pomoschyu-vyborov.html).· A second Levada Center found that a majority of Russians are not ready to take part in street protests but are ready to sign petitions, a possible indication of the ways in which the Russian opposition will act now (meduza.io/news/2019/02/13/levada-tsentr-bolshinstvo-rossiyan-ne-gotovy-vyhodit-na-mitingi-no-soglasny-podpisyvat-petitsii).· Third and most important, 71.5 percent of Ukrainians now say that their country is in a state of war with Russia, the highest number yet and one that will shape not only how they will view Moscow but also how they are likely to vote in the upcoming presidential elections in their country (gordonua.com/news/war/715-ukraincev-schitayut-chto-mezhdu-ukrainoy-i-rf-idet-voyna-opros-736292.html).
Paul Goble Staunton, February 13 – Something unprecedented is happening to ethnic Russians in many post-Soviet states, Vladimir Kozlov of the Higher School of Economics says. As a result of intermarriage with members of the titular nationalities, ethnic Russians are watching as their children assimilate to the non-Russian nations. That is just one of the conclusions he draws on the basis of a study of the ethnic Russian diasporas in Estonia, Latvia, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan where the numbers of ethnic Russians are also falling because of outmigration and a larger number of deaths than births (“Demographic Behavior of the Russian Diasporas in the Baltic Countries and Central Asia” (in Russian), Vestnik Instituta ekonomiki rossiiskoy akademii nauk, 3(2018): 50-60, atpublications.hse.ru/articles/224725554 as summarized at q.hse.ru/news/242883621.html.) In three of these four countries – Kyrgyzstan is the exception with only six percent – Russians form from a fifth to a quarter of the entire population, Kozlov says. “However, this share is constantly falling,” as a result first and foremost of outmigration and a greater number of deaths than births among an aging population. “Assimilation,” he continues, is “a less significant factor” but it exists and works in the following way: “In inter-ethnic marriages, the children can choose the titular nationality” rather than Russian. This is characteristic both for the Baltics – in Latvia there are many mixed families – and in Kazakhstan.” “Young people also may with time change their national self-identification in favor of the basic one in the republic. But this has been typical more often in other countries, including Moldova, Belarus, and Ukraine.” Ethnic Russians are not only decreasing in number but becoming significantly older than members of the titular nationality, pushing down birthrates still further and increasing death rates among the Russians. The major cities of these countries, which used to be dominated by ethnic Russians no longer are. Instead, the exit of ethnic Russians and the influx of non-Russians from rural areas is changing them almost overnight from bastions of Russian culture into centers of non-Russian life and identity, Kozlov says. He notes that in all the republics, the number of births per woman per lifetime among Russians is lower than among those in the titular nationality, and mortality among adult [Russians] is higher” than among adult members of the titular peoples. Ethnic Russians have fewer children in these countries than do members of the titular nationalities. The titular nations also have greater life expectancies than do the ethnic Russians living among them, with a slight advantage in Kazakhstan and a much larger one in Estonia. Kozlov says that demographers are unanimous that this reflects far greater consumption of alcohol by Russians than by members of the titular nationalities.
The Russian government intends to spend a similar amount on building a road to China as it will on education, according to official documents on 12 national projects and their costs over the next six years, finanz.ru reports. The country plans to spend 784.5 billion rubles (around $12 billion) on the national “Education” project, and 655 billion rubles ($10 billion) on the project “Europe – Western China”. The Kremlin estimated its total expenditure on national projects at nearly 26 trillion rubles ($182 billion), of which just over half will be taken from the Federal budget, more than 7.5 trillion from other sources, and in excess of 4.9 trillion from the regional budgets. Another 147.8 billion will come from state extrabudgetary funds. Infrastructure development will be the most expensive, whereas education and science are among the “cheapest” of the national projects, Vedomosti reports.
For its role in the poisoning of ex-spy Sergei Skripal, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo issued a stern warning to Russia that America will hold Russia accountable.
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo emphasized during recent talks with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov that the United States intends to sanction Russia over an alleged chemical attack in the United Kingdom, State Department spokesperson Robert Palladino said on Wednesday
Bulgaria’s chief prosecutor said that a suspected Russian intelligence officer, with a reported link to the poisoning of Sergei Skripal, had visited Bulgaria before another high-profile poisoning.
Britain and Russia are discussing the prospect of replacing the diplomats that were expelled from the UK after the Salisbury Novichok attack, MPs have heard.
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko will speak about the situation in the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine at a session of the UN General Assembly next week. — Ukrinform.
Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin will pay a working visit to the Federal Republic of Germany on February 15-17, the press service of the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry has reported. — Ukrinform.
Leonid Slutsky, the Chairman of Russian Duma Committee on Foreign Affairs, stated that return of annexed Crimea to Ukraine in exchange for lifting up the U.S. sanctions “is out of the question.” Russian Official said this commenting the statement of the U.S. Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN Jonathan Cohen, TASS informed. Slutsky added that there was no legal basis for imposition of new anti-Russian sanctions due to Russia’s attack in Kerch Strait.
On January 17, Ukrainian Minster of Defense Stepan Poltorak stated that Russia’s ultimate goal in the Azov–Black Sea region is to “force Ukraine to renounce its right to navigate through the Kerch Strait and to annex the Sea of Azov in its entirety” (Telegraf.com.ua, January 17, 2019). Acute disputes between Kyiv and Moscow regarding the Azov Sea, its status and navigation rights broke out immediately after the collapse of the Soviet Union, in 1991. But by 2003, the parties concluded an agreement that proclaimed the Azov Sea an internal sea of Russia and Ukraine, with both countries having equal rights to it and declaring that “no obstruction of maritime traffic from either side [is] allowed” (Sovremennoepravo.ru, accessed January 27, 2019). In 2007, Kyiv and Moscow reached a new agreement stating that “every vessel traveling through the Kerch Strait [which connects the Azov and Black seas] must report the nature of its business to the Kerch port” (Svoboda.org, December 19, 2018). Yet, following Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea in March 2014, Moscow has assumed de facto control over access to/from the Sea of Azov (Svoboda.org, December 19, 2018), thus essentially transforming this highly enclosed body of water into an “internal lake” (Inosmi.ru, December 11, 2018).
Ukrainian Minister of Infrastructure Volodymyr Omelyan stated, on February 1, that “Russian’s most recent actions in the Sea of Azov have resulted in Ukraine losing $360 million” (RBC, February 1). The announcement pointedly contrasted with comments from several weeks earlier by Mikhail Sheremet, a deputy in the State Duma (the lower chamber of the Russian parliament). Specifically, the Russian lawmaker defiantly claimed that “sanctions will not change Russia’s policies in the Sea of Azov,” adding that “threats and aggressive rhetoric will do nothing but deepen the rift between the two countries [Russia and Ukraine] and hinder bilateral trade and understanding” (RIA Novosti, January 16). In spite of its limited geographic scope, the Sea of Azov is crucial for the Russian side for three main reasons. First, it provides Russia with economic leverage against Ukraine. Second, the Azov Sea serves as an operational theater from which to deepen the political and economic rift between Ukraine’s southeastern regions and Kyiv. And third, Russian activities in the Azov Sea contribute to expanding Russia’s military power in the wider Black Sea region.
Permanent Representative of Ukraine to the UN Volodymyr Yelchenko met with Miguel Soares, the United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Legal Affairs and United Nations Legal Counsel to discuss the implementation of the “Crimean” resolutions adopted by the United Nations General Assembly. — Ukrinform.
Russian-imposed authorities in Ukraine’s occupied Crimea region have detained three Crimean Tatar activists, according to a Ukrainian human rights group.
Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Grigory Karasin stated that Russia considers the joint exercises “Sea Breeze” which are held by Ukraine and the …
Russia’s FSB Federal Security Service has detained another three Crimean Tatars after raids on their houses. They are suspected of organizing a “terrorist cell” and participating in the Hizb ut-Tahrir organization.
Paul Goble Staunton, February 13 – Many ethnic Russians who lived in Crimea before the Anschluss considered themselves more Russian than even those in Moscow, voted for pro-Russian parties and in 2014 welcomed the annexation by Russia. But in the years since, Andrey Vasilyev says, they have come to see that Russia is not what they imagined and even to turn against it. So far, the Region.Expert commentator says, this anger is mostly held in check; but the experiences of this community has reduced their importance to Moscow as an integrative force and led the Russian authorities to rely increasingly not on those they thought would always be their allies but on “new Russians” brought in from elsewhere (region.expert/replacement). But the arrival of these outsiders has only heightened the sense of Crimea’s longtime Russian residents that they are different than the Russians of Russia and if anything decreased their desire to be part of Vladimir Putin’s Russian world now or in the future. Indeed, they could become allies of Ukrainians seeking the restoration of Ukrainian sovereignty there. Ever more Russians from Russia are coming into Crimea, but ever more Russians in Crimea are getting Ukrainian passports so they can leave, Vasiliyev says. The Russians coming in are getting the better jobs, and the Russians who were there to begin with are seeing a decline in their standard of living and status. Not surprisingly, the latter aren’t happy. Those coming in are at least superficially more loyal to Moscow because they are dependent on Moscow subsidies, but that also means that the burden Crimea imposes on the Russian taxpayers is almost certain to grow, something that will make the Ukrainian peninsula even more “a suitcase without handles,” as Russians often say. That aspect of the situation has been noted quite often in the Russian media, but Vasilyev points out that the growing tensions between the old Russians and the new ones have not. Any mass migration always changes the relationship between the old and the new, and that unsettling development produces anger, first among the older residents and then among the new. To support his argument, the analyst cites comments that have appeared in social media and says that even more blunt assessments are being offered in private conversations among both groups. All this suggests, he says, that “in a short time, these contradictions will become an inalienable part of Crimean political discourse.” And that means that Putin’s annexation will leave the Russians of Crimea divided just as it has left Russians elsewhere.
After occupying Crimea, Moscow has been reshaping the ethnic composition of the local population, bringing in hundreds of thousands of people from across Russia. As of May 2018, according to official Russian statistics, some 247,000 Russians moved to Crimea since the annexation while about 140,000 people have left, mostly Ukrainians and Crimean Tatars. However, Ukrainian officials state that the real numbers are much greater, by hundreds of thousands. Some of those who had to leave Crimea for mainland Ukraine were forcibly expelled by the decisions of occupation courts. The research “Forcible Expulsion of the Civilian Population from the Occupied Territory by Russia,” a special issue of the thematic review of the human rights situation under occupation “Crimea beyond rules,” mentions 2,425 identified cases of such expulsions. The authors of the report deem them a kind of “cleansing” for the continued colonization of Crimea by Russians, which in itself is a neo-imperial policy tool, as was stated at a PACE side event in June 2018, where the report was presented. “The purpose of such a policy is to use in the future the thesis about the unwillingness of the ‘people of Crimea’ to return to the jurisdiction of Ukraine,” the paper’s authors note. The paper was released by the three human rights NGOs – the Regional Centre for Human Rights, the Ukrainian Helsinki Human Rights Union, and an analytical group which wanted to remain anonymous – CHROT – in July 2018.
Since the Russian occupation of Crimea began four years ago, the combination of its longtime residents being forced to leave and new people from Russia arriving means that 20 percent of the population consists of people who did not earlier live on the Ukrainian peninsula, a shift that reflects a Kremlin policy that approaches the definition of genocide.
Ukrainian activist Volodymyr Balukh was convoyed against his will from the Kerch penal colony to the Simferopol remand prison, presumably for participating in a court hearing. — Ukrinform.
14.02.19 09:57 – Ten attacks against Ukraine army in past day: one Ukrainian soldier wounded, two terrorists destroyed, – JFO center Feb. 13, Russia occupation forces violated the ceasefire ten times employing weapons prohibited by the Minsk agreements three times. View news.
Russia’s hybrid military forces in the past 24 hours mounted 10 attacks on Ukrainian army positions in Donbas, with one Ukrainian soldier reported as wounded in action (WIA). Two invaders were killed and another two were injured, intelligence reports say.
An OSCE Special Monitoring Mission (SMM) drone recorded images of the newest Russian radio intelligence system Torn in the territory of the Donbas which is not under Ukraine’s control, according to the report of the OSCE SMM in Ukraine. “On February 10, the short-range, unmanned aerial vehicle spotted two BMP-1 fighting vehicles and a truck mounted with the Torn radio intelligence system, all parked in a residential area in Novohryhorivka in the Donetsk region,” the report reads. The Torn system is currently undergoing field tests by the Russian Armed forces. This new radio intelligence system is available only in Russian Army. It has never been supplied to Ukraine.
Norway’s Ambassador to Ukraine Ole Terje Horpestad and representatives of the Norwegian Refugee Council visited Luhansk region and familiarized themselves with the work of the repaired entry/exit checkpoint Stanytsia Luhanska.
The speaker of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Kateryna Zelenko, said that Kyiv will not agree to open a “diplomatic representation” of the unrecognized republic of Transnistria in Ukraine. “We already have diplomatic representation, and this is a representation of Moldova,” said Zelenko as quoted by LB.ua news outlet. According to her, Ukraine, as a guarantor country, will continue its efforts in the Transnistrian settlement. Earlier the leader of unrecognized Transnistria, Vadim Krasnoselsky, announced his intention to open “PMR” (Pridnestrovian Moldavian Republic) embassies in Brussels and Kiyv. Ukraine, like all the UN member states, does not recognize Transnistria’s independence. Only three territories recognized Transnistria: partially recognized South Ossetia and Abkhazia, and unrecognized Nagorno-Karabakh.
The General Staff of Ukraine’s Armed Forces has said it plans to complete its structural reform by the end of this year, in accordance with the provision on the General Staff, approved in January. At the same time, a new draft regulation is being prepared, which will come into force in January 2021. The General Staff of Ukraine’s Armed Forces has said it plans to complete its structural reform by the end of this year, in accordance with the provision on the General Staff, approved in January. At the same time, a new draft regulation is being prepared, which will come into force in January 2021. “The provision on the General Staff is only part of the work that concerns legislative support for the reform. Only the distribution of the post of the Chief of the General Staff – Commander-in-Chief of Ukraine’s Armed Forces requires changes to 13 laws of Ukraine, seven presential decrees, seven acts of the Cabinet of Ministers and a number of orders of Defense Ministry and General Staff,” Deputy Chief of the Defense Planning General Directorate of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Vyacheslav Demianenko said at a briefing on Wednesday, according to the Defense Ministry’s press service. Demianenko said the provision on the General Staff approved in January of this year is transitional, and that work has begun to develop a new draft of the regulation, which will come into force in January 2021. He said in recent years a number of structural units have already been brought into line with the structure adopted at NATO headquarters. By the end of 2019, it is planned to complete the full structural transformation of the General Staff in accordance with the provision approved by a presidential decree of January 30 of this year. In parallel with this process, similar measures are being taken across the vertical of the military administration.
The bomber Su-24M was chosen as the air launch platform for the Ukrainian cruise missile “Neptun” – the air launched version of the ASCM is second in line after the development of the coastal complex. This was announced by Oleg Korostelov, Director General of the LC “Luch” interview with Tsensor.NET. “As an air launch platform for ” Neptune ” the Su-24M plane was selected. This is a powerful and heavy machine in order to arm it with a cruise missile. This year we will start designing. And next year we plan to move on to practical implementation. The first version of the Neptune Missile Complex in the ground, to cover the Black Sea and Azov Sea waters, will be ready early next year. At the same time, the missile will be staged for arms. Its development will cost about $ 20 million. A naval platform will be a missile boat of the “Lan” type. The development of the ship complex is scheduled to be completed within the next two years.
The bomber Su-24M was chosen as the air carrier for the Ukrainian cruise missile “Neptun” – the airspace version of the PCR second in line after the development of the coastal complex. This was in an interview with Tsensor. NET reported the general director of KB “Luch” Oleg Korostelov, reports ukrmilitary . ” As an air carrier “Neptune” a Su-24M plane was selected. This is a powerful and heavy machine in order to arm it with a cruise missile. This year we will start designing. And next year we plan to move on to practical implementation. The first version of the Neptune Missile Complex in the ground, to cover the Black Sea and Azov Sea waters, will be ready early next year. At the same time, the missile will be staged for arms. Its development will cost about $ 20 million. A naval platform will be a missile boat of the “Lan” type . The development of the ship complex is scheduled to be completed within the next two years.
Author: D.Popovich In 2019, at the disposal of the Ukrainian Army will appear a powerful domestic high-precision missile complex “Vilkha”. Each launcher of this complex can hit 12 different land targets. The “Vilkha” complex is an alternative to the Soviet-Russian “Smerch” 300-millimeter rocket jet system (RSZO). The designer of the new Ukrainian complex, which is equipped with the same high-precision adjustable missile, is the Kiev Design Bureau “Luch”. According to Oleg Korostelev, general designer-general of the LC “Luch”, in a interview with Tsensor.NET, in 2019 “Velyka”, which has passed the whole complex of necessary tests and adopted for use, will begin to act at the disposal of the SC. Ukrainian development is already actively interested abroad. Meanwhile, in KB “Luch” already work on the next modification of “Vilkha” with an extended range of missile flight. Oleg Korostelev also said that Vila and one more brainchild of KB “Luch”, a complex of “Neptun” cruise missiles, will become the basis for the creation of another powerful domestic missile system. – Oleg Petrovich, tell me why there was an idea to create a missile complex “Velyka”? – In the spring of 2014, in the conditions of the Russian military aggression against our country, and.o. the president, the head of the Verkhovna Rada Alexander Turchinov gathered for the meeting the leadership of the Ministry of Defense, the General Staff, designers and leaders of leading defense enterprises. Then the task was to restore the defense industry of Ukraine in the shortest possible time in a situation where any military-technical assistance from our partners was blocked. It must be said that the task was very complicated, because, on the one hand, the country’s defense and industrial complex until the year 2014 was systematically destroyed, and on the other hand, the OPK of Ukraine was almost completely integrated into the Russian one, with which all communications were severely interrupted in 2014. The priority tasks set by Turchinov were to provide the armed forces with modern weapons and military equipment and, first of all, close the bottlenecks and scarcity range of weapons, missiles and ammunition. One of the most acute deficits was the rockets for the most powerful of the armored ATU RSZO “Smerch”. These missiles remain only for several weeks of active combat operations. This difficult task, not just the repetition of “Smerch”, but the creation of a new rocket and the entire missile complex, was assigned to me and our design bureau. xxAn equally ambitious task was put before the leadership of the Pavlograd Chemical Plant to develop and ensure the production of solid rocket fuel missiles as soon as possible. The whole complexity of the task was that the whole technology of the production of the rocket we had to work from scratch solely on the basis of Ukrainian enterprises without using any part of Russian production. It usually takes years to solve all the issues, including numerous bureaucratic agreements, budget resources, inclusion in appropriate programs, connecting adjacents, etc., and we simply did not have such time. In order to expedite this process, Turchinov ordered to accompany the draft to the head of the AP of that time, Sergei Pashinsky, who subsequently became Head of the Committee on the question of national security and defense of the Verkhovna Rada. As a result, we have won time and huge resources, despite the traditional attempts by officials of various levels to bureaucraise this process. – How long was the development? – The first shot of “Velya” produced in March 2016. That is, the development was spent only 2.5 years. We can say that we have managed in an unprecedentedly short time. By the way, at first we were not very believed. However, every doubt was dispelled when everyone saw how accurately our system was shooting. During one of the tests, immediately two missiles hit practically straight into the place where the pillar stood at the point of aiming. The management believed in our project, and this was the most important thing. – Due to what you managed to achieve such accuracy of shooting? – How can the efficiency of the same “Grad” or other reactive systems be increased? For example, you can increase the range of firing. But at the same time, the precision will decrease and the projectiles will expand. And what was the idea of ”Ally”? We supplied the rocket with a gas dynamical steering wheel so that it could save the direction of flight conditionally “along the trunk” until it gained speed. But it was in the Russian rocket too. But already during the dive to the target, our missile begins to be corrected by guiding the target according to a given coordinate system. To do this, we designed a unique rocket head and completely rebuilt the launcher, replacing all the electronic equipment in it. As a result, the missile complex received two new qualities. First, it became high-precision, and secondly, it was possible to assign each target to its missile. Also read: The United Force soldiers checked the combat readiness of the Smerch RSZO, headquarters. VIDEO – One launcher has 12 guides for missiles. That is, unlike “Smirch”, at “Villeh”, each missile can strike a separate target? – Absolutely right. Now, each launcher can strike high-precision impact on 12 different objects of the enemy. – And can this rocket be shot down with anti-aircraft means? – It’s practically impossible. The engine of our rocket tells her the speed, which on the active part of the flight reaches 1200-1300 meters per second. This is a very high speed, which is more than 3 Makhov. – What is now capable of a unit armed with at least three such installations? “I am not a military man, so it’s quite difficult for me to adequately estimate the damage that can inflict our complex, but the Ukrainian army has got a powerful and accurate weapon capable of solving a whole range of important combat tasks. Translate from: Russian 2288/5000 One of the test stages of the missile complex “Velyka” – But the truth is that “Velya” can now replace the only Ukrainian tactical complex “Tochka-U”? – The efficiency of “Alychi” is comparable to the strength of tactical complexes, but the accuracy of the defeat significantly exceeds the “Point”. The new generation of “Villemah” missiles will not yield to the tactical missile complex and range. At the same time, it should be noted that in Ukraine new modern rocket systems are being developed, several times exceeding the “Point” in range. – And “Vilkhoy” have already become interested abroad? – Yes, now there are active negotiations, with two Middle Eastern states. – Can you even name the approximate export value of the complex? – I can only say that the world cost of one rocket of such a complex is more than $ 200 thousand. In Ukraine, launched in the series of hundreds of missiles Veliky: General Designer Oleg Korostelev 02 – And in what amount at all cost the development of the product? – Very little money was spent – only about $ 10 million of budget funds. – It’s incredible! How did you manage to realize a project of such a scale for such money? – We would not be able to solve such large-scale tasks without spending excess resources if the priority missile programs were not personally supervised by Alexander Turchinov, who became secretary of the NSDC. At its meetings, with the participation of representatives of the Ministry of Defense, the Ministry of Economy, the Ministry of Finance, the leaders of Oboronprom and the leaders of the leading enterprises involved in the projects, all issues are dealt with quickly and, moreover, a general strategy is developed to help more effectively implement the project under development. The overcrowding of bureaucratic delays and control over the use of budgetary funds was ensured by the parliamentary committee on national security and defense, headed by Sergei Pashinsky. The current composition of the committee consists of security and defense-oriented professionals who are able to quickly adopt and, if necessary, even “sell” the solution that is necessary for the country. But such projects would not have been implemented without the active support and guidance of the Ministry of Defense and the General Staff and, of course, the Supreme Commander-in-Chief. – Now the complex “Velya” is included in the state defense order for 2019 and launched into serial production. When will we see him in the troops? – A certain number of launchers will be ready to be sent to troops in the first half of 2019. The Ministry of Defense paid us an advance payment for serial production of hundreds of missiles. They will be ready in the second half of the year. – Is there a need for additional personnel training for the Ville Rocket Complex? – Preparation of military personnel for exploitation of “Velychi” will not present any difficulties. Specialists of our KB will provide practical help in this. We are also ready, according to the order of the Ministry of Defense, to issue any number of simulators. – There is information that you are already working on improving the characteristics of “Villeh”. In particular, over the increase in the flight range of the rocket. – Yes. We are already working on increasing the range of the missile’s flight almost twice, while maintaining the high accuracy of the target’s destruction. Read also: Ukraine starts serial production of RSZO “Vilha” – Poltorak We lay the basis for the creation of a domestic MRK – LC “Luch” is developing another major system – a complex of “Neptun” cruise missiles capable of destroying surface targets. How are things going on here? – The state has limited resources. Therefore, when the basic works on “Vil’he” were realized and financed, our KB started an active phase of work on the Ukrainian cruise missile “Neptune”. This topic is also at the strict control of the NSDC. Two successful launches are now under way, the extreme of which took place on December 5 last year. We gradually complicate the task of testing the missile in new regimes. The first variant of the Neptune Missile Complex in the ground version, intended to cover the waters of the Black and Azov Seas, will be ready early next year. At the same time, we expect to equip the Ukrainian cruise missile. – How far can she strike the enemy? – The distance of practical use of a rocket is 300 km, that is, it completely closes the water of the Black and Azov seas, which is of interest to us. Translate from: Russian 852/5000 One of the stages of the missile complex “Neptun” – Apart from the coast, there are also options for air and sea based “Neptune”. How are you? – Su-24M airplane was chosen as the air carrier “Neptune”. It is a powerful and heavy machine in order to arm it with a cruise missile. This year we will start designing. And next year we plan to move to practical implementation. – And the sea variant? – The sea platform will be a missile boat “Lan”. Over the next two years, we must complete the development of the ship’s complex. – How much will developing a ground variant of “Neptune” cost? Approximately $ 20 million. Today there are no world analogues of the development of rocket systems for such limited resources and in such a short time. – It is known that KB “Luch” is involved in the development of a domestic anti-aircraft missile complex. Tell us about this project. – We are engaged in repair and prolongation of the operating time of missiles for anti-aircraft missile systems “Buk”, “Osa”, “Strela”, С-300. Ukraine has every opportunity to develop its medium-range anti-aircraft missile system, that is, with a radius of damage of up to 100 km. By working on the “Vilkhoy” and “Neptune”, we establish a good base for the creation of a domestic MRK. Read also: Ukraine and Poland plan to develop a new air defense system – What do you mean? – We create launchers, charging systems and systems on the universal platforms, which can be used for new projects, including for the SAM. In addition, we have domestic radar stations, which provide detection of air targets at a range up to 400 km. Of course, this is not some kind of puzzle – we can not just take and immediately put together an anti-aircraft missile complex from these parts. For example, the same missile “Vielha” will have to be seriously modified. But in general, we will have a base for creating a domestic SAM, capable of striking air targets at a range of up to 100 km and at an altitude of up to 25 km. – And when a Ukrainian anti-aircraft missile system may appear at the disposal of the army? – If you start financing now, then within 2-3 years. Now, any such system immediately introduces a foreign customer. This means that the costs for such a project will be paid off in the shortest time.
Russian defense reporter and expert Alexey Khlopotov on Wednesday said that improved version of the Ukrainian T-64 surpasses the Russian upgraded T-72B3 tank. An expert explained that both tanks represent a cost-effective upgrade package of the Soviet-designed main battle tanks. The upgrade of T-64 and T-72 tanks allows a significant expansion of their combat capabilities with minimal investments. But he noted that: “the T-64BV is a tank for poor people, and then the “famous” Russian T-72B3, in their mass configuration, is a tank for beggars”. Ukrainian tank is equipped with a modern sighting system, which has achieved performance comparable to Belarus-made Sosna system that installed on Russian T-72B3 tank. Furthermore, the gunner’s sighting system of improved T-64 has an integrated thermal imager, which detects, identifies, and engages enemy 125 mm guns at any time of day and in all weather conditions. Other improvements of Ukrainian tank include a Lybid K-2RB digital radios that represent a version of US-made Motorola and a satellite navigation system integrated into a digital battle management system. As to T-72B3, Russian tank equips with the P-186 radio station that might seem outmoded. What’s more, a satellite navigation system in Russia’s version does not have any at all. Besides, Ukrainian tank fitted with a new generation of explosive reactive armor (ERA), called the Nizh. The advanced protection system, designed in the late 1990s, consists of multiple modules attached to the hull of the tank, which explode when hit by a projectile, dissipating its explosive force. Russian T-72B3 uses Soviet-era Kontakt-5 ERA elements. The Soviet system is inferior both in the effectiveness of the elements themselves and in the protected area. Additionally, Ukrainian T-64 has a 12.7mm machine gun mounted on the top of commander hatch which can be aimed and fired from within the tank compared with T-72 where a commander may be killed by sniper or fragments. For reference, the press service of the UkrOboronProm said Ukrainian defense industry constantly reinforces the army with the upgraded T-64BM tank of the 2017 version. “The T-64 is the main combat vehicle of armored units of the Ukrainian army and showed itself perfectly in confrontations with the aggressor in the East of Ukraine … According to the results of the test complex, the upgraded T-64BM of 2017 model from last year is serially supplied to the Armed Forces of Ukraine,” according to press service. The Ukrainian Army has received at least 100 upgraded T-64 main battle tanks since 2018.
During the past decade, Saudi Arabia has been interested in a promising Ukrainian tank of the new generation. It is a question of the development of a project, which in the Soviet times received the designation – “object 477”. This was on the air of the “Line of Defense” program, Sergei Berezutsky, an expert on armored vehicle engineering company “Science technology”, told. According to him, he participated in the development of this project in the 80’s. Repeatedly received information about the possible participation of the running model of the latest tank in the parade (with what before 2014). However, this technique still does not remove the vest of secrecy. Despite the fact that the tank began to create more than 40 years ago, the ideas that underlie the concept of the tank are still promising, says S. Berezutsky: “The armor does not have analogues, the charging mechanism, the gun 152 mm, the seven-channel fire control system. It was based on the Soviet component base of those times. The screen was pixel-sized with a fist. With the use of modern electronics it would be possible to make a tank, which, as Americans say, is a gamechanger. This is a real treasure of our defense industry. ” The expert believes that the further development and start of production of these tanks “more than possible, it is necessary”. He believes that the demand for tanks of this type will be “extraordinary”. Reference: Works on the tank of the new generation began in Kharkov at the KMDB after the Soviet era. After the collapse of the USSR, the work of the tank, which received the conventional name “Nota” (object 477A1) lasted until the 2000s. Photo of the combat vehicle “Object 477” There is information on the production of about 10 samples of tanks that are stored on the territory of the KMDB and in Russia. URL: https://www.facebook.com/UaMilCentreNGO/videos/527880704287778/
In 2018, the Cabinet of Ministers allocated UAH 3 billion from the state budget for the modernization of state defense enterprises, Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman told a government meeting on Wednesday, reporting on the Cabinet’s work in 2018. This allowed setting up the production of high-precision weapons and means to boost the country’s defenses.
It is not known why the two British men arrested near the Moldovan border had decided to cross into Ukraine illegally, as British citizens are allowed to enter the country without a visa for up to 90 days.
Seaports in Ukraine are working to grab an even larger share of containerized cargo moving to the European Union from Asia by further developing domestic container terminals and increasing the quality of services provided to shippers. Ukraine’s Black Sea ports have in recent years become more attractive to shippers moving goods from Asia to the EU due to their location.
Kyiv’s District Administrative Court has ruled to reinstate Ulana Suprun as Acting Health Minister of Ukraine. Thus, the court ruled to cancel the previous decision of February 5, 2019.
New discovery of genetics proved that ancestors of the Irish people came from the northern Black Sea coast, the south of present-day Ukraine
British daily newspaper The Guardian will now use in its articles the name of the capital of Ukraine according to English spelling – “Kyiv” – instead of the old form of “Kiev,” the Guardian journalist Shaun Walker has reported on his Twitter account. — Ukrinform.
14.02.19 12:22 – SBU responds to Manher’s statement on Dotsenko’s involvement in Handziuk murder The SBU spokeswoman Olena Hitlianska responded to Vladyslav Manher, who accused the SBU general Danylo Dotsenko of arranging Kateryna Handziuk murder. View news.
14.02.19 11:10 – Manher claims SBU general Dotsenko arranged attack on Handziuk to discredit police Head of Kherson Regional Council Vladyslav Manher accused of arranging Kateryna Handziuk murder claims that attack on Handziuk was arranged by the SBU general Dotsenko. View news.
Head of the Kherson Regional Council Vladyslav Manger, the suspect in the organization of murder of Kherson official Kateryna Handziuk, stated that her murder was organized by General of Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) Danylo Dotsenko, as 112 Ukraine reported. “I know that Kateryna has closely cooperated with the SBU and was directly subordinated by SBU General Danylo Dotsenko. I state that in the personal conversation, Danylo Dotsenko repeatedly reported to me about personal hate toward “Batkivshchyna’ Party and our leader Yulia Tymoshenko and he will do everything possible at the territory of Kherson region to eliminate it,” the suspect said. According to him, Dotsenko repeatedly confirmed his intentions by actions.
14.02.19 10:26 – Court to proceed with bail hearing for Manher accused of Kateryna Handziuk murder The court recessed bail hearing for Head of Kherson Regional Council Vladyslav Manher accused of arranging Kateryna Handziuk murder. View news.
Presidential candidate Oleksandr Vilkul, deputy head of the Opposition Bloc faction in parliament, has put up UAH 115,000 bail for policeman Vasyl Melnyk who was arrested by court on February 12 on suspicion of beating members of the nationalist organization C14 near the Podilsky police department in Kyiv last Saturday, February 9. Presidential candidate Oleksandr Vilkul, deputy head of the Opposition Bloc faction in parliament, has put up UAH 115,000 bail for policeman Vasyl Melnyk who was arrested by court on February 12 on suspicion of beating members of the nationalist organization C14 near the Podilsky police department in Kyiv last Saturday, February 9. “The policeman was doing his duty. Under extreme conditions. When the militants attacked the Podilsky district police department. I have posted bail because I want to build a lawful state in which everyone has the right to protection, regardless of the political situation for the country’s leaders,” Vilkul wrote on his Facebook page on Wednesday.
Russian hackers are redoubling their efforts in the run-up to presidential elections in Ukraine, according to the head of Ukraine’s cyber-police. The presidential election will be a test of Ukraine’s capacity for order.
The first waves of Canadian election monitors have arrived in Ukraine, as fears rise over Russian meddling in the March 31 presidential ballot. “Election observation is one of most transparent and accountable ways to support democracy.”
The refusal to register Russian observers does not contradict the international obligations of Ukraine in the area of free and democratic elections. — Ukrinform.
KYIV. Feb 14 (Interfax-Ukraine) — More than a quarter of Ukrainians (26.9%) who are going to participate in the voting at the presidential elections in Ukraine intend to support showman Volodymyr Zelensky, followed by incumbent President Petro Poroshenko — 17.7% and Batkivschyna Party leader Yuliya Tymoshenko — 15.8%. KYIV. Feb 14 (Interfax-Ukraine) — More than a quarter of Ukrainians (26.9%) who are going to participate in the voting at the presidential elections in Ukraine intend to support showman Volodymyr Zelensky, followed by incumbent President Petro Poroshenko — 17.7% and Batkivschyna Party leader Yuliya Tymoshenko — 15.8%. These are the results of a survey conducted by the Kyiv International Institute of Sociology (KIIS) from January 31 to February 10, 2019, released at a press conference at the Kyiv-based Interfax-Ukraine agency on Thursday. Among respondents who said they would vote in the first round of the election, 9.8% are ready to support a member of the Opposition Platform — For Life, Yuriy Boiko, Radical Party leader Oleh Liashko — 6.6% and Civil Position Party leader Anatoliy Hrytsenko — 6.1%. Among all those surveyed, 16.4% would have voted for Zelensky, Poroshenko — 10.8% and Tymoshenko — 9.6%. Some 27% of respondents said that they had not yet made their choice.
14.02.19 15:06 – Zelenskyi, Poroshenko, Tymoshenko lead in presidential race, – KIIS survey The latest Kyiv International Institute of Sociology (KIIS) opinion poll taken on Jan. 31 – Feb. 10 shows that Volodymyr Zelenskyi, Petro Poroshenko and Yuliia Tymoshenko still lead in the presidential race. View news.
Bookmaker ElectraWorks Limited (Gibraltar), operating under the bwin brand and owned by GVC Holdings PLC listed on the London Stock Exchange, has increased the odds of incumbent President Petro Poroshenko in the upcoming presidential elections to 1.95 to 1 (from 2.1 to 1 a week ago).
President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko believes that the restoration of economic growth will make Ukraine a leader in the region. — Ukrinform.
KYIV — Ukraine has taken the extraordinary step of deporting a senior cleric of the Moscow-aligned Orthodox Church and stripping him of his citizenship, marking a political escalation in the historic rift that has shaken the Eastern Orthodox world and further raised tensions between Kyiv and Moscow. The move threatens to draw U.S. officials into the spat, since the Ukrainian-born Bishop Gedeon, whose given name is Yuriy Kharon, is said to hold U.S. citizenship. U.S. Embassy officials in Kyiv could not immediately confirm whether or not he has U.S. citizenship. Gedeon, of the Moscow Patriarchate Church in Ukraine, had just touched down at Kyiv’s Boryspil Airport after a working trip to the United States when Ukrainian Security Service (SBU) agents detained him over accusations of promoting Russia’s military aggression against the country and holding a second passport, reportedly American. After being held for hours overnight on February 13 and interrogated, the Ukrainian-born cleric was stripped of his Ukrainian passport and then put on a plane to Frankfurt early on February 14, Ukrainian authorities and Moscow Patriarchate officials said in official statements. Ukrainian authorities claimed he had lied about losing the passport but then found it on him during the interrogation.
14.02.19 15:47 – UOC (MP) bishop Gedeon (Kharon) deported from Ukraine to US Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Moscow Patriarchy (UOC-MP) bishop Gedeon (Kharon), who is a senior priest at the illegally built church in Kyiv’s upper city, has been deported from Ukraine to the U.S. View news.
Ukrainian bishop Gedeon was detained at Boryspil airport and was not allowed into Ukraine after his visit to the U.S., as the Information Centre of Orthodox Church of Ukraine reported on Facebook. The viceroy of Kyiv Monastery of the Tithes, the bishop of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine Gedeon was not let to enter Ukraine during the passport control. The message says that he will be deported, yet it remains unknown where exactly. Related: Russia to shut down last Ukrainian Orthodox Church in Crimea Information Centre of Orthodox Church of Ukraine informed that on February 5, the bishop visited the U.S., where he was talking about the situation in Ukraine related to the violation of rights of the believers, he told about attacks at Orthodox churches, beating and harassment of the believers by radical organizations. After such statements the bishop supposed that Ukraine’s authorities might put pressure on him. The Spokesperson of Ukraine’s State Border Guard Service Oleg Slobodyan reported about bishop’s detention on his Facebook page. He noted that his passport was seized for having several citizenships. Besides, it was determined that Gedeon is dealing with anti-Ukrainian propaganda. Border guards will decide on further legal actions against the detainee.
The State Border Guard Service denies deportation of bishop of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Moscow Patriarchate Gedeon (Yury Kharon) to the U.S. The service states about his voluntary departure to Germany as spokesperson Oleg Slobodyan reported on Facebook. “Today in the morning at 06:30 am, Yury Kharon (Gedeon) got a flight back to Frankfurt. He departed voluntary, without enforcement, in good health and mood. He promised to return,” Slobodyan wrote.
The Orthodox Church of Ukraine has been ordered to vacate the Cathedral of Vladimir and Olga in occupied Simferopol by the beginning of March, with this likely to lead to eight parishes in rural areas also being forced to close –
As he does every Sunday, Father Gomonov doles out relationship advice to single men and women who mingle at the Peter and Fevronia Club, a sort of speed-dating night for the Russian Orthodox.