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Ukraine / Russia Ad Hoc Media Update (136) – NATO 70th Anniversary


Anonymous expert compilation, analysis, and reporting.

Every indication looks like VP Pence’s words are spot on. Turkey appears to be peering into the abyss to join Russia and leaving NATO.  In the big picture, this looks like a losing option for Turkey.  Erdoğan is playing a short-term game, probably for personal gain. Turkey is the big loser if they continue down that road. 

Germany appears to be talking out both sides of their mouth, trying to placate the West as well as Russia. 

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BLACKJACKs with FOXHOUND escorts and MIDAS tankers sortie over the North Sea twice this week. SASC briefed on missile defense. 2nd BW continues its good work in Europe. NATO Amphibious EX starts in the Baltic Sea. More on Russian GNSS spoofing. Rostec tells JDW it intends to offer the Su-57E PAK-FA to the PRC and notably Turkey, the latter presumably to replace the F-35. US Senate introduces another Russia sanctions bill.

Much on the NATO 70th Anniversary event. NATO foreign ministers meet. SECGEN address to Congress transcript.

VP Pence chastises Germany:  “Germany must do more. And we cannot ensure the defense of the West if our allies grow dependent on Russia …It is simply unacceptable for Europe’s largest economy to continue to ignore the threat of Russian aggression and neglect its own self-defense and our common defense … If Germany persists in building the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, as President Trump said, it could turn Germany’s economy into literally a captive of Russia” – it is a direct consequence of Germany actively indulging Russian agents of influence despite their malign intent toward Germany.

VP Pence also chastised Turkey: “Turkey must choose. Does it want to remain a critical partner of the most successful military alliance in the history of the world or does it want to risk the security of that partnership by making reckless decisions that undermine our alliance?” and “We have… made it clear that we will not stand idly by while NATO allies purchase weapons from our adversaries; weapons that threaten the very cohesion of this Alliance”. Erdoğan is known to pathologically mistrust the Turkish military, and especially the TAF that was ruthlessly purged, and the S-400 is presumably insurance against the military. This disagreement will escalate, as Erdogan needs disputes with the West to distract Turkey’s public from his unsustainable economic mismanagement, and evident political blunders. Russia will indulge Erdoğan and an offer of the Su-57E is highly probable, and Erdoğan will claim it as a victory, spiting the “Crusader West”.

Three bizarre reports from Russia. Lithuania update.

WSJ comments on concerns over the inexperienced Zelenskiy becoming Ukraine’s President. Pres Poroshenko and PM Groysman comment on NATO – new partnering agreement signed. NATO Sea Shield 2019 EX launched. Russia objects. Berdy’s analysis of Russian media and talk show coverage of Ukraine beggars belief, the level of public vilification of all things Ukrainian appears to be undiminished since the 2014 campaign and makes a mockery of Ragozin’s claims that Russians like Ukrainians again. Russia claims that Ukraine caused US$23B of damage to Crimea when part of Ukraine (evidently neglecting Ukraine’s immense infrastructure and irrigation investments) – one wonders what a Ukrainian counter-claim against Russia for 330 years of colonial occupation, millions of forced deportations to Siberia, millions of deaths, destruction of cultural heritage, and genocide would tally up to?

Crimea update. Donbas update – Pres Poroshenko’s statement that Russia will suffer twice the losses appears to be in practice. A Russian assassin attempts to put a bomb in the car of an SBU officer and blows himself up. Extended range Vilkha-M GMLRS tested to 130 km (70 nmi) range. Two anti-ship missile test launches planned for Odessa firing range in the near future. AFU VDV airborne being equipped with Airborne Systems T-11 parachutes.

Kyiv City Council renames Ivana Kudri St to John McCain St.

Election update – Zelenskiy and Poroshenko agree to a public debate that will prove to be interesting, as Poroshenko is sharp and hard-edged in political argument, Zelenskiy will find him very challenging, showbiz experience notwithstanding.

More ROC shenanigans in Ukraine.


UAWire – Russian Tu-160 bombers flew over North Sea twice in one week

A pair of Russian Tu-160 strategic bombers made a 13 hour planned flight over the neutral waters of the Barents, Norwegian and North seas this week, the Russian Defense Ministry reports. The bombers were escorted by MiG-31 interceptor jets, and during the flight, the Tu-160 crews practiced aerial refueling. At various stages of the route, the Russian aircraft were accompanied by F-16 jets belonging to Denmark and Norway. “All flights by the Russian Aerospace Forces are done in strict compliance with the international rules for airspace use,” the Russian defense department stressed. The Tu-160s had made their previous flight over the same seas only a few days earlier, on 29 March. On that occasion, they were escorted by British and Danish military aircraft. The British Defense Ministry reported that it had scrambled Eurofighter Typhoons to prevent the Russian bombers from entering British airspace. The department noted that there had been a similar incident on 27 March. At the end of January, US and Canadian fighters escorted Tu-160 bombers that had entered the Canadian aerial defense identification zone. The Russian Defense Ministry said that the bombers had flown over the neutral waters of the Arctic Ocean. Production of the Tu-160 strategic bomber began in 1984. The plane is 54.1 m long and has a wingspan of 55.7 m. It is operated by a crew of four, and has a range of 11-13,000 km and a top speed of 2,000 kph. In addition to its normal ammunition, the Tu-160 can carry nuclear weapons.

UK forced to scramble fighter jets twice in five days to intercept Russia’s bombers – Defence Blog

British officials said it was taking the two suspected violations “seriously” after being forced to scramble fighter jets to intercept Russian Blackjacks bombers which approached UK airspace twice in five days. “We can confirm that RAF quick reaction alert Typhoon aircraft from RAF Lossiemouth scrambled to monitor two Blackjack bombers while they were in the UK area of interest. At no point did the Russian aircraft enter UK territorial airspace,” Royal Air Force spokesman said on Wednesday. The UK Ministry of Defence said Quick Reaction Alert (QRA) Typhoon fighter aircraft from RAF Lossiemouth in Moray responded to the incident off Scotland’s northeast coast. On Friday, Typhoons from Lossiemouth responded to Russian aircraft in a similar situation. Also noted that Russian Tupolev Tu-160 long-range bombers were involved in both Friday and Wednesday’s incidents. The RAF worked closely with NATO partners to monitor the Russian aircraft as they passed through a variety of international airspace before they were intercepted over the North Sea. British fighters escorted them from the UK’s area of interest and ensured that they did not enter UK sovereign airspace. The RAF routinely identify, intercept and escort Russian aircraft that transit international airspace within proximity to the UK’s area of interest and continue to be on call every day.

US developing defenses against Russian and Chinese hypersonic weapons – Defence Blog

Pentagon plans to develop space sensors to early warning and monitoring enemy hypersonic missiles, Undersecretary of Defense for Policy John C. Rood told the Senate Armed Services Committee’s strategic forces subcommittee at a hearing on missile defense policies and programs. “Potential adversaries are developing sophisticated ballistic and cruise missile systems, with increased speed, range, accuracy and lethality,” Rood said. Defense of the United States is the first priority, Rood said, outlining steps taken in that direction as reflected in the fiscal year 2020 military budget request and the 2019 Missile Defense Review. They include: Adding 20 ground-based interceptors in Alaska, bringing the total to 64. Continued development of a redesigned kill vehicle for reliability. Continuing to build a new missile field at Fort Greely, Alaska. The need to field new discrimination radars in Alaska and Hawaii and extend operations for the sea-based X-band radar. The need for a wide-area surveillance system to defend against cruise missile threats. Besides improving legacy missile defense systems, Rood said, the United States will pursue breakthrough technologies to defend against emerging threats. Among the funding requests are. Also, he added that the US developing defenses against hypersonic missiles, including near-term sensor and command and control upgrades. Lastly, Rood said, it’s important that allies and partners invest in their own air and missile defense capabilities that are interoperable with those of the United States. Toward that end, the U.S. is working with NATO, Spain, Turkey, Romania, Poland, Gulf partners in the Middle East, Israel, Japan and other nations to develop a range of defenses, he said.

Scary Drill: U.S. B-52 Bombers Practiced Nuclear Attacks on Russia Last Month | The National Interest

The U.S. Air Force in early March 2019 deployed five B-52 bombers from Barksdale Air Force Base in Louisiana to the United Kingdom. Some of the eight-engine, long-range planes flew mock nuclear attacks on Russian soil.

U.S. Air Force B-52s conduct missions to Morocco and Romania – Defence Blog

A U.S. Air Force B-52 Stratofortress aircraft flew from RAF Fairford, England, to Romania on April 2 to conduct Close Air Support training at the Cincu Range with Romanian Joint Terminal Attack Controllers. On the way back to Fairford, the bomber was joined in formation by Hungarian Gripen fighter jets. The U.S. has a strong military-to-military relationship with our NATO allies Romania and Hungary. Joint training opportunities like these enhance our ability to operate together and sharpen the readiness of the NATO alliance. A second B-52 flew to Morocco to participate in the annual African Lion training exercise. African Lion is hosted by Morocco and Tunisia and led by U.S. Marine Corps Forces Europe and Africa. The purpose of the exercise is to enhance interoperability and mutual understanding of each nations’ tactics, techniques and procedures. The B-52 missions also allowed aircrews to conduct theater familiarization and to demonstrate U.S. commitment to allies and partners through the global employment of our military forces. U.S. Strategic Command regularly tests and evaluates the readiness of strategic assets to ensure we are able to honor our security commitments. The B-52s, part of the Bomber Task Force currently deployed to the U.S. European Command area of responsibility, are from the 2nd Bomb Wing, Barksdale Air Force Base, Louisiana. The aircraft arrived in theater on March 14-15 and are temporarily operating out of RAF Fairford.

Nearly 2,000 UK Armed Forces personnel will deploy to the Baltic Sea – Defence Blog

Sailors and Marines from all nations of the UK-led high-readiness Joint Expeditionary Force (JEF) will take part in the deployment, due to take place in May, which will underline the importance of protecting Europe at a time of increased threat, according to UK Ministry of Defence. Nearly 2,000 UK Armed Forces personnel will deploy to the Baltic Sea for a series of multinational exercises in support of European security. This week, Defence Ministers and representatives from JEF countries will come together at the Ministry of Defence to discuss the deployment and test the mechanisms for mobilising the JEF, laying the foundation for the start of Baltic Protector. A total of 3,000 military personnel from all JEF nations will be involved in the Baltic Protector deployment, which draws in around 20 naval vessels, including a number of Royal Navy ships. They will test themselves with maritime tactical exercises, amphibious drills, amphibious raiding practice, shore landings and naval manoeuvres. This is the first ever JEF maritime deployment of this scale, and demonstrates its ability to provide reassurance in the region.

Report: Russia Engaging in Widespread Satellite Navigation Spoofing

A new report claims that Russian security forces have engaged in extensive spoofing of satellite-based navigation systems, often to protect President Vladimir Putin or Russian armed forces. A report by the nonprofit think tank C4ADS has logged nearly instances of spoofing of GPS-type navigation systems, The report highlights interference operations in the Global Navigation Satellite System, or GNSS. These satellites relay position, navigation and timing signals to cell phones, car navigation systems, and ships at sea 24/7 across the globe, providing location and navigation detail with unparalleled accuracy. Commonly known as GPS in the United States, Russia operates a similar system named GLONASS (see above photo), Europe’s system is called Galileo, China’s is Beidou, and Japan’s QZSS.

Russia’s push against the perfidious West will continue | World | The Times

Nato’s plan for a weapons store in Poland costing $260 million will be seen in Moscow as one more sign of the bloc trying to encircle Russia and blunt its deterrent. Moscow is already angry at the placing of a US missile defence system in Poland and Romania, as well as rotating deployments of Nato troops in eastern Europe. President Putin cites these as justifying the development of a new arsenal of nuclear and conventional weapons, including hypersonic missiles and an underwater drone that could strike coastal targets in the United States. Russia will also be irked by the promise of Jens Stoltenberg, secretary-general of Nato, to step up support for Ukraine and Georgia, including “training of maritime forces and coast guards, port visits and…

Russia may offer China and Turkey the new Su-57 stealth jet

Last week, Rostec director of international cooperation and regional policy Viktor Kladov was quoted by Jane’s Defense Weekly as saying that in the coming weeks, Russian President Vladimir Putin may sign off on sales of the Su-57E, an export variant of Sukhoi’s new Su-57 stealth fighter. “China has recently taken delivery of 24 Su-35 aircraft, and in the next two years [China] will make a decision to either procure additional Su-35s, build the Su-35 in China or buy a fifth-generation fighter aircraft, which could be another opportunity for the Su-57E,” Kladov said at a press conference at Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace Exhibition in Malaysia. South Korea, Vietnam, India, Brazil and Turkey have also expressed interest in the plane, Asia Times reported. Like the Su-35 Flanker-E, the Su-57 is built by Sukhoi, an aircraft design bureau that was rolled into the United Aircraft Corporation in 2006, along with other Russian plane makers. Russian Deputy Defense Minister Yuri Borisov said last July that Moscow wouldn’t seek mass-production of the Su-57 until Russia’s older fourth-generation jets begin to lag behind their competitors. The first batch of Su-57s ordered included just a dozen jets, four of which were subsequently deployed to Syria. However, Sukhoi still has 10 different prototypes undergoing testing. “The PAK FA already has an export passport,” an anonymous source in the aviation industry told Sputnik Friday, referring to the plane using its internal testing designation. “The government is currently reviewing documents related to renaming the jet from T-50 to Su-57.” Alexander Pekarsh, the director of Sukhoi’s Komsomolsk-on-Amur Aircraft Plant, said at a press conference in February that the factory was “working on two aircraft under the contract with the Defense Ministry,” one that will be delivered this year and one next year, with the plane entering service with the Russian Aerospace Forces in 2020.

U.S. senators want stiff sanctions to deter Russia election meddling | Reuters

U.S. Republican and Democratic senators introduced legislation on Wednesday seeking to deter Russia from meddling in U.S. elections by threatening stiff sanctions on its banking, energy and defense industries and sovereign debt.

U.S. Senators Seek Tough Sanctions To Deter Russian Election Meddling

U.S. Republican and Democratic senators have introduced legislation threatening tough sanctions to discourage Russia from meddling in U.S. elections, Reuters reports.

Foreign Ministers Meet In Washington To Mark NATO’s 70th Anniversary

Foreign ministers from NATO’s 29 member countries are meeting for a second day in Washington to mark the alliance’s 70th anniversary and discuss security threats, including Russia and Afghanistan. Foreign ministers from NATO’s 29 member countries are meeting for a second day in Washington to mark the alliance’s 70th anniversary and discuss security threats, including Russia and Afghanistan. The foreign ministers were scheduled on April 4 to hold a series of meetings at the headquarters of the U.S. State Department, with the first session focusing on Russia. The ministers were expected to endorse a set of measures aimed at improving NATO’s defenses in the Black Sea region. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was scheduled to attend the sessions and host a working lunch with the visiting ministers. He planned to hold a press conference later in the day. Washington says the agenda also includes briefing on the situation in Afghanistan, the demise of an arms-control treaty signed by the United States and the Soviet Union in the last years of the Cold War, and NATO-member Turkey’s purchase of a Russian surface-to-air missile system. Russia’s Foreign Ministry said on April 4 that the two-day gathering in Washington shows that NATO “has no intention of abandoning plans to step up military and political confrontation with Russia.”

NATO – Opinion: ‘NATO: good for Europe and good for America’ – Address to the United States” Congress by NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, 03-Apr.-2019

Address to the United States Congress by NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg

In Speech To U.S. Congress, NATO Chief Criticizes Russia, Says Alliance Wants ‘Effective Relations’

NATO’s chief says the alliance faces threats from a “more assertive Russia,” but also that the alliance is not seeking to isolate Moscow.

In Rare Speech to Congress, NATO Leader Says Allies Must Deter Moscow – The New York Times

While NATO celebrates turning 70, a squabble between Washington and Ankara over fighter jets and missile systems threatens to spoil the party.

NATO chief praises Trump for getting members to increase defense spending | Daily Mail Online

In the first ever address to Congress by a NATO head, Jens Stoltenberg on warned of divisions within the pact and called for bigger defense budgets to cope with challenges such as Russian agression.

NATO chief, in speech to Congress, declares Trump’s push for more defense spending is working | Fox News

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, in a historic address to Congress, declared Wednesday that President Trump’s push for NATO allies to increase their defense spending has “had an impact” and made the alliance stronger.

Trump Is Turning NATO Into a Viable Military Force

The Trump administration has made great strides in recent months to transform the cash-strapped and ailing NATO into a viable global military force

Trump Learns to Live With NATO—And Vice Versa – Defense One

There are arguments over spending, and all manner of other issues. But the 70-year-old alliance has seen bad times before.

Pence calls Germany stance in NATO ‘unacceptable’ – CNA

WASHINGTON: US Vice President Mike Pence on Wednesday (Apr 3) strongly criticised Germany at NATO’s 70th anniversary gathering, saying the ally’s …

Pence targets Germany on NATO defense spending | TheHill

Vice President Pence on Wednesday targeted Germany at event to honor NATO’s 70th anniversary, calling for the nation to increase their defense spending to the alliance and to stop work with Russia on a gas pipeline.

Pence calls Germany stance in NATO ‘unacceptable’

Washington (AFP) – US Vice President Mike Pence on Wednesday strongly criticized Germany at NATO’s 70th anniversary gathering, saying the ally’s level of defense spending and work with Russia on a gas pipeline were “simply unacceptable.”

U.S. Vice President Warns Turkey, Germany Over Deals With Russia

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence has warned Turkey and Germany about their dealings with Russia, telling Ankara it is “reckless” and warning Berlin it risks becoming a “captive” of Moscow.

Mike Pence Slams Turkey And Germany In NATO Speech | Daily Wire

On Wednesday, while speaking at a conference in Washington, D.C. marking NATO’s 70th anniversary, Vice President Mike Pence used the opportunity to slam NATO allies Germany and Turkey.

Pence Slams Germany, Turkey At NATO Party « Breaking Defense – Defense industry news, analysis and commentary

In a day of optimism at NATO’s 70th birthday bash, tensions over spending, and weapons deals with Russia, make for awkward moments

Pence tears into Germany, Turkey on NATO anniversary | AFP.com

Tensions soared Wednesday between the United States and two of its NATO partners, Germany and Turkey, as the alliance opened a 70th birthday celebration aimed at showing a united front against a resurgent Russia. Hours before foreign ministers from the 29-member Western alliance opened talks in Washington, Vice President Mike Pence delivered a stinging rebuke both to Germany over its level of defense spending and to Turkey for buying a major arms system from Russia. “Germany must do more. And we cannot ensure the defense of the West if our allies grow dependent on Russia,” Pence told a think-tank forum on the NATO anniversary. “It is simply unacceptable for Europe’s largest economy to continue to ignore the threat of Russian aggression and neglect its own self-defense and our common defense,” he said. President Donald Trump has repeatedly voiced annoyance that few allies in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization are meeting a goal set by the alliance in 2014 for each member to devote two percent of GDP to defense. Germany last month announced that defense spending would slip to 1.25 percent in 2023. Hungry for energy, Germany has also defied the United States and several Eastern European states by forging ahead with Nord Stream 2, a gas pipeline with Russia that will double the capacity of the existing link. “If Germany persists in building the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, as President Trump said, it could turn Germany’s economy into literally a captive of Russia,” Pence said. Pence, however, promised that the United States “is now and will always be Europe’s greatest ally” — a tonal shift from Trump, who has loudly wondered whether it is worth defending smaller NATO members such as Montenegro. German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas, speaking at Columbia University in New York before heading to Washington, denied Germany was dependent on Russia. “Germany is very involved with different NATO missions and we will fulfill our commitments. Germany can be relied upon,” he said. – ‘Turkey must choose’ – Western powers have also increasingly clashed with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s Islamist-rooted government, which has cracked down on dissent at home and threatened to strike US-backed Kurdish fighters in Syria. On Monday, the United States said it was suspending Turkey’s participation in the F-35 fighter-jet program due to Ankara’s plans to buy Russia’s S-400 missile defense system, raising fears that Moscow could gain data to hone its hardware and shoot down Western aircraft.

How The Looming Soviet Threat Gave Rise To NATO

It’s been 70 years since the North Atlantic Treaty Organization came into being when 12 countries pledged to defend each other should any of them come under attack. RFE/RL takes a look at NATO’s origins, and how Soviet expansionism and its objections to a United Nations force, led to its creation.

Trump and Turkey Rattle NATO’s 70th Birthday

NATO marks its 70th anniversary this week unsure if it’ll make it to 75. Donald Trump’s demands that North Atlantic Treaty Organization allies pony up and meet their defense-spending commitments risks damaging morale. As Selcan Hacaoglu reports, Turkey joined NATO in 1952 while fighting alongside U.S

U.S. and Turkey Escalate Feud Over Russian Missile System – Foreign Policy

Erdogan may be using the S-400 dispute with Washington to deflect attention from problems at home.

Russia ‘confident’ of Turkey’s commitment to S-400 deal – Turkey News

Turkey is committed to its deal with Moscow to purchase S-400 missile defense system, a senior Russian official said on April 3.

Turkey’s turn toward Russia mars NATO’s 70th anniversary celebration

The Trump administration’s decision not to send cutting-edge fighter jets to Turkey could foreshadow a breakdown in military cooperation and even a U.S. blacklist against the key NATO ally due to its turn toward Russia.

US VP Pence warns Turkey against buying Russian air defenses | News | ekathimerini.com

US Vice President Mike Pence warned Turkey on Wednesday against buying a Russian S-400 anti-missile system, keeping up the pressure on its NATO ally to abandon the purchase that Washington considers a threat to US military equipment.

Pence warns Turkey against buying Russian air defense system | Fox News

Vice President Mike Pence warned Turkey on Wednesday that it could risk its membership in NATO if it goes ahead with plans to buy a Russian air defense system despite widespread U.S. and international opposition.

Turkey’s purchase of Russian missile system ‘defies Nato’ | World news | The Guardian

Disunity at 70th anniversary gathering of alliance as Turkish foreign minister criticises Trump

U.S. VP Pence warns Turkey against buying Russian air defenses | Reuters

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence warned Turkey on Wednesday against buying a Russian S-400 anti-missile system, keeping up the pressure on its NATO ally to abandon the purchase that Washington considers a threat to U.S. military equipment.

Russia arms deal jeopardises your Nato membership, US tells Turkey | World | The Times

Mike Pence, the US vice-president, warned Turkey last night that it was risking its Nato membership with plans to buy a Russian air defence system in a row threatening to mar the alliance’s 70th anniversary meeting.Mr Pence said that the country could also be expelled from the F-35 Joint Strike Fig

Pence issues S-400 ultimatum to Turkey | Ahval

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence called on Turkey to choose between its status in the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and its planned purchase of Russian S-400 defence systems on Wednesday, during a speech marking NATO’s 70th anniversary. “Turkey must choose. Does it want to remain a critical partner of the most successful military alliance in the history of the world or does it want to risk the security of that partnership by making reckless decisions that undermine our alliance?” Pence said. Pence’s comments came during a summit held at the Washington D.C.-based Atlantic Council, hours after Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu appeared at the same summit to defend the S-400 purchase. Çavuşoğlu said Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan had received assurances from his U.S. counterpart, Donald Trump, that the S-400 deal could go ahead. But Pence’s hard line on Turkey’s purchase of the Russian missile defence system gave no sign of leeway on the issue. “We have… made it clear that we will not stand idly by while NATO allies purchase weapons from our adversaries; weapons that threaten the very cohesion of this Alliance,” said Pence.

US warns Turkey over Russian S-400 missile system deal – BBC News

US Vice-President Mike Pence says Turkey makes “reckless decisions” by buying the advanced system.

U.S.-Turkey Standoff Over F-35 and Russia’s S-400 Escalates : NPR

Turkey is buying 100 F-35 jet fighters from the U.S. — and an anti-aircraft missile defense system from Russia. The U.S. says it cannot have both.

U.S. Clashes With Turkey Over Russian Air-Defense System – WSJ

The NATO alliance faced a fresh test as the U.S. and Turkey traded threats over Ankara’s plan to buy a Russian air-defense system, escalating a long-simmering standoff.

U.S. seeks to resolve dispute with Turkey over Russian missiles – Breaking News – Jerusalem Post

Acting US Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan on Tuesday said he expected to resolve a dispute with Turkey over its planned purchase of Russia’s S-400 air defense system, a day after the Pentagon halted delivery of equipment related to F-35 fighter jets to Ankara.

Trump to Cancel Fighter Jet Deal With Turkey If It Buys Russian Missile System

The president signaled support for canceling the jet fighter deal after a group of senators introduced a bipartisan bill to delay delivery of the aircraft to Turkey.

Erdogan’s next front: The White House – Turkey – Haaretz.com

The rift between Turkey and America could reach the point of no return with the U.S. threatening sanctions after Turkey’s refusal to void Russia deal

US must choose between Turkey, terrorists: Turkish VP

Vice President Fuat Oktay asks if US wants to remain Turkey’s ally – Anadolu Agency

US must choose between Turkey and terrorists, Vice President Oktay says – Daily Sabah

The U.S. must choose between remaining Turkey’s ally and siding with terrorists, Vice President Fuat Oktay said Wednesday. The United States must…

Trump will resolve F-35 issue for Turkey – Turkish foreign minister | Ahval

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu shrugged off suggestions that Turkey’s purchase of Russian S-400 missile defence systems would prevent the transfer of new generation F-35 stealth fighter jets during a discussion at the Atlantic Council think tank on Wednesday. U.S. President Donald Trump promised to resolve the issue in a phone call with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Çavuşoğlu said, adding that the phone call had taken place “recently” but that he could not reveal further details. “Despite what the Pentagon said earlier this week,” asked the moderator, CBS News journalist Margaret Brennan. “Right, right, on this issue and also S-400 issue,” Çavuşoğlu said. The Pentagon, U.S. Congress and NATO have all expressed concerns with the S-400 deal, which experts have said could leave a backdoor open for Russia to obtain NATO defence data. “The S-400 is a computer. The F-35 is a computer. You don’t hook your computer to your adversary’s computer and that’s basically what we would be doing,” acting U.S. Secretary of Defense Kathryn Wheelbarger said in March.

Turkish FM says no turning back from Russia arms deal

Turkey will not turn back from a major arms deal with Russia despite the US suspension of Ankara from the F-35 fighter-jet program, Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said Wednesday. “The S-400 deal is a done deal and we will not step back from this,” he told a think-tank forum in Washington

Turkish foreign minister: Defense deal with Russia ‘done’ despite US threats | TheHill

Turkey’s foreign minister on Wednesday said that his country will “definitely” go through with buying a Russian air defense system despite U.S. moves to halt Ankara’s participation in the F-35 fighter jet program in response.

Turkey says proposed working group to ease U.S. worries over Russian S-400s | Reuters

Turkey has proposed to the United States that they form a working group to determine that Russian S-400 missile defense systems do not pose a threat to U.S. or NATO military equipment, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Wednesday.

Turkey says proposed working group to ease US worries over Russian S-400s | World News

The United States and Turkey have been at loggerheads over Ankara`s decision to purchase the S-400s, which are not compatible with NATO systems, from Russia.

Turkey says need to explain to U.S. Congress why Ankara bought S-400 | Reuters

The U.S. administration and Turkey should explain to the U.S. Congress why Ankara had to purchase the S-400 missile system from Russia, Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Wednesday.

Turkey’s lira at stake if Erdogan chooses S400 over F-35 fighter jets

Turkey’s relationship with the U.S. is crucial to its economic future but Russia holds political sway in Ankara.

With Turkish loss of the F-35, Israel keeps its aerial superiority – Arab-Israeli Conflict – Jerusalem Post

Washington halts F-35 equipment over Turkey’s instance to buy the Russian S-400 missile defense system.

Radically re-think relations with Turkey | Ahval

Turkey’s $2.5-billion purchase of S-400 missiles from Russia violates the NATO principle of inter-operability, undermining the strategic partnership between Turkey and the United States. If Turkey takes delivery of the missiles in July – and there is every indication it will – Washington must reconsider the scope of security and economic cooperation with Ankara.

Russia ‘confident’ of Turkey’s commitment to S-400 deal

Deputy Prime Minister says Turkey ‘distinctly’ fulfils obligations under missile contract – Anadolu Agency

The U.S. Is Pausing Deliveries of F-35 Equipment to Turkey

Ankara is pressing forward with plans to buy a Russian air defense system, which Washington claims is incompatible with a F-35 purchase.

U.S. Withholding F-35 From Turkey Could Give Russia The Chance It Needs To Export SU-57 – The Drive

Russia may attempt to fill the vacuum created by a U.S. embargo on F-35 exports to Turkey with an export variant of its Su-57 advanced fighter.

NATO Envoy Explains Why US Concerned by S-400 Proximity to F-35 in Turkey – Sputnik International

WASHINGTON (Sputnik) – The United States is worried about the proximity of Russian S-400 air defence systems to US F-35 jets in Turkey because of a possible transfer or disruption of data, United States Ambassador to NATO Kay Bailey Hutchison told reporters.

Pompeo to Turkey: Military Action in Syria Will Have ‘Devastating’ Consequences – Sputnik International

Amid the continuing standoff in Syria over US withdrawal and Turkish desire to carry the fight to US-allied Kurdish militias in the country, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo warned Ankara in no uncertain terms that if Turkish forces took unilateral military action in Syria, it would have “devastating” consequences.

Turkey to Benefit if it Buys Russian Jets Instead of F-35 – Political Strategist – Sputnik International

The United States on Monday announced its decision to halt shipments of F-35-related equipment due to Ankara’s plans to purchase Russia’s S-400 missile defence system. Turkey, a US-NATO ally, has been planning to purchase 100 F-35 fighter jets from the US. Sputnik discussed this with Oliver Steward, a political strategist from the UK.

Turkish Pilots Continue F-35 Training Despite US Halting Deliveries – Report – Sputnik International

US Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman James Inhofe earlier announced a decision to halt the training of Turkish pilots on F-35 jets at Luke Air Force Base amid Washington reportedly deciding to freeze F-35 supplies to Ankara over its purchasing S-400 air defence systems.

TASS: Military & Defense – US wants Turkey to remain NATO member, terminate S-400 deal with Russia — diplomat

NATO Supreme Allied Commander and the head of US European Command, urged Turkey to change its mind on the deal with Moscow

China and Turkey to Get Russia’s New Missile System, Who Else Is Buying This Weapon U.S. Does Not Want Them to Have?

Turkey said its purchase of the S-400 defense system was “a done deal” as China and India also signed purchase agreements. Saudi Arabia and Qatar were among those looking to buy it as well.

The Mistrust Between the U.S. and Turkey Is Mutual – Bloomberg

Once a bulwark against the Soviet Union and a critical NATO member, Turkey is flirting with Russia in the era of Trump.

Lockheed Martin pinched as U.S. halts F-35 parts to Turkey | Fort Worth Star-Telegram

The Republic of Turkey has been in on the ground floor of the F-35 program since 1999, and has committed to buying up to 100 of the F-35A version. Turkey’s first F-35A was delivered in June, during a dramatic ceremony in Fort Worth that features music and images from the country that straddles eastern Europe and western Asia.

F-35s for Turkey on hold as U.S. approves sales for Australia, Norway – UPI.com

Lockheed Martin was awarded a $151.3 million contract to sell 15 F-35 Lightning II aircraft to Australia and six to Norway, the same day transfer of F-35s and related equipment to Turkey halted.

Turkish pilots will keep training on F-35s in Arizona, despite possibly being cut from the program

Turkish pilots will continue training to fly the F-35A joint strike fighter in Arizona, officials said.

Erdogan’s party objects to Istanbul and Ankara local election results – CNN

(CNN)Turkey’s Justice and Development Party (AKP) is officially contesting its losses in this week’s local elections. According to results announced this week, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s AKP lost control of Istanbul, the country’s financial capital. It also lost the capital city Ankara, where the opposition People’s Republican Party (CHP) won more than 50 percent of votes. AKP party officials from both cities on Tuesday announced objections to the results. At a press conference, Bayram Senocak, the party’s top official in Istanbul, announced his party’s objection to the results in 39 voting districts. “We have detected huge differences between the signed and stamped ledgers that the counted votes are entered in the first place and the figures submitted to the Supreme Electoral Board, and this has been the subject of our objection appeal,” he said. “Also, we are talking about 319,570 invalid votes which can change the outcome,” he added. According to the state news agency Anadolu, invalid votes in five Istanbul districts will now be recounted. “The decision was taken by respective district electoral boards following appeals from AKP” Anadolu reported.

Why Turkey’s Election Results Test Erdoğan’s Grip on Power | The New Yorker

Kaya Genç writes about the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, whose A.K.P. party lost in several major municipal elections that were seen as a referendum on his Presidency.

Turkey AK party rulers are bad losers, says election ‘winner’ Imamoglu – BBC News

The AK Party has put up victory posters even though initial results show the opposition candidate won.

Turkey’s opposition demands mandate as Istanbul recount continues | News | Al Jazeera

Ekrem Imamoglu urges electoral board to name him mayor of Istanbul, but ruling AK Party denounces ‘stained election’.

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Russians’ Happiness More Dependent on Nationalism than on Money, Sociologists Say

Paul Goble Staunton, April 3 – Russians have fallen ten places in the international happiness, from 49th in 2017 to 59th last year, and sociologists have been studying why that has occurred and what makes Russians happy. Their conclusion, Elena Rotkevich says, is that money doesn’t make Russians happy but that nationalism does. Like other nations, the St. Petersburg journalist says, Russians become happier when they have more money and less when they have less, sociologists say; but since 2008, these two measures of well-being have diverged, with the amount of money and that of happiness no longer tracking together (gorod-812.ru/rossiya-obretet-schaste-cherez-natsionalizm/). According to sociologist Eduard Ponarin, “money is important for happiness, especially when there isn’t much of it.” But since 2008, these trend lines have diverged: “Happiness has increased but satisfaction with one’s life has not.” While most of the boost came in the fat year of the early 2000s, it has continued, albeit at a slower rate, even though economic measures have stagnated or even declined. That development, he suggests, reflects the increase in patriotic feelings, the sense many have that their country “is moving in the right direction.” Indices of happiness “bounced” after the war in Georgia and the annexation of Crimea. “But the potential of patriotism is already close to exhaustion.” Happiness from patriotism is a shot term phenomenon and must be fed or it will dissipate, Panarin says. “Georgia, Crimea and Syria” all helped Russians to become happier for a time. But “what’s next? Venezuela?” He argues that “Russia has come to happiness via nationalism” rather than economic progress. “With the disintegration of the Soviet Union, there occurred as well a collapse of the worldviews people had.” Russians were no longer certain what was good and what was bad. “Each was out for himself. But a society cannot exist for long if that is the case,” the sociologist argues. Russians need some common values to “bind” them together, Panarin continues. What will that ideology look like? There aren’t that many choices – left of center, liberal and conservative. Russians have tried and cast aside the first two and that leaves the conservative variant. “A conservative ideology can be realized through religion or through nationalism,” the sociologist says. “Since religion in post-communist countries does not have much influence, there remains only nationalism.” And on the basis of it, people will be able to decide “who we are and who others are.” In Russia, there are two forms of nationalism, one that focuses on “’people from the Caucasus’” and a second that focuses on the Americans. “The better we are in relations with the US, the worst toward the Caucasus,” he says, adding that “the reverse” is also true. “Caucasians,” of course, is a term that includes Central Asians as well. Russian elites focus on the Americans as the significant other that defines them, but the Russian people focus on “the Caucasians,” Panarin says. That divide explains much of “the duality” of Moscow’s nationality policy with part of it being about great power nationalism and part about “ethnic nationalism.” But “after the Crimean events,” Panarin says, “a decisive shift toward great power nationalism occurred. Now, we oppose ourselves to the West and try within the country to unite everyone under this slogan,” including those like people from the North Caucasus whom many others do not like. Much depends on which kind of nationalism is dominant. If Russia moves in the direction of ethnic nationalism, reuniting the Soviet space will be hard because so much of it is populated by Muslims. But if it moves toward great power nationalism, then the integration process will be easier and accelerate. “Now, as in the USSR,” Panarin continues, “elites believe that Russia’s interests must not be limited to its territory. Between 2012 and 2016, the share of representatives of elite who supported great power ambitions flew up from approximately 10 percent to almost 90 percent.” And there was almost as large an increase in those who said force matter more than economics. Rotkevich also spoke with Svetlana Posokhova, a psychologist at St. Petersburg State University. The scholar said happy individuals manifest spiritual comfort, a sense of humor, self-confidence, and a sense of physical well-being. Unhappy ones live by stereotypes, are unwilling to change, and have the sense everything good was in the past and the future will be joyless. A major reason for unhappiness, Posokhova said, is that people compare their situations with those of people they watch on television and decide they’re doing worse than those shown on screen. And Rotkevich spoke with Margarita Izotova, a psychologist at St. Petersburg’s Medical University, who has studied the state of happiness among teenagers in the northern capital. According to Izotova, 38 percent of that cohorot say that they have never felt themselves to be happy. That is not a good sign for the future, she suggests. But perhaps an even worse one is that every eighth one of them when asked “do you want to be happy?” responds by saying “I don’t know.”

Russian Air Power: Birds Of Prey Guard The Kremlin

Flying predators keep Moscow’s presidential citadel free from gold-pecking crows. They are the real hawks in the Kremlin.

UAWire – Russian Foreign Minister complains about U.S. reluctance to cooperate on cybersecurity

Russian Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov, in an interview with the newspaper Moskovsky Komsomolets, spoke about the United States refusal to …

U.S. to cease purchase of Russian RD-180 rocket engines till 2022

Pentagon intends to stop purchasing Russian RD-180 rocket engines till 2022 which were used for the launching of military satellites, as John Raymond, the Head of the U.S. Air Force Space Command, said at the hearing in the committee for the Armed Forces of Congress House of Representatives, TASS news agency reported. “We are on our way to stop using rocket engine RD-180 in time,” Raymond stated. He noted that according to the law, the purchase of additional engines has to be ceased till 2022. He also stressed that if they fail to meet the deadlines, and the U.S. does not create a rocket engine to replace RD-180, Pentagon will not consider any fall-backs. The U.S. intends to create its own rocket engine to replace the Russian RD-180. In 1997, the U.S. and Russia concluded an agreement on the supply of 101 RD-180 engine, the sum of the contract made around a billion USD.

Lithuania Sentences Russian-Born Sailor To Seven Years For Spying For Moscow

A Lithuanian court has sentenced a Russian-born sailor to seven years in prison on charges of spying for Moscow, the latest in a series of espionage-related cases between the two neighboring countr…

UAWire – The United States and Lithuania sign a five-year plan for military cooperation

The United States and Lithuania approved a plan of cooperation in the field of defence for the period up to 2024, reports RIA Novosti with …

Can a Ukrainian Comic Stand Up to Russia? The West Worries – WSJ

The vaulting of a popular TV comic to the top of Ukraine’s presidential race presents a quandary for the West by threatening to a displace a leader and ally who for five years has led his country’s costly war against Russia.

President: Ukraine is willing to undertake the long-awaited commitments and start fulfilling the NATO Membership Action Plan — Official website of the President of Ukraine

President Poroshenko congratulated NATO on the 70th anniversary of its establishment. The Head of State noted that 70 years ago, the civilized world united for the creation of the North Atlantic Alliance. “Over the years, the Alliance has proved that it is about peace, stability and human dignity. Over the years, the Alliance has also proved to be the strongest and most effective team of like-minded people – no member of the Alliance has ever been threatened by anyone,” the Head of State said on his Facebook page. “Ukraine highly appreciates the solidarity of the North Atlantic Alliance and its continued support for our state in the face of Russian aggression. Today, when the Russian aggressor cynically and blatantly violates norms and rules established in the world, the movement to NATO remains a non-alternative direction for Ukraine, its protection and preservation of territorial integrity,” he added. The President assured that Ukraine remained a reliable partner of NATO in building a common and secure future. According to him, all these years, Ukraine has been confidently paving its way to the North Atlantic Alliance – a new Ukrainian army respected in the region and in the world has been created almost from scratch. “Today, we are actually the eastern flank of the Alliance. In terms of weapons, experience and standards. Today, we are ready to undertake the long-awaited commitments and start implementing the NATO Membership Action Plan,” Petro Poroshenko emphasized. “I believe that the London Summit of NATO is just the opportunity when allies will properly assess Ukraine’s contribution to the defense of the Euro-Atlantic community and begin a practical debate on giving our country the MAP. With faith in that today, I am signing the next Annual National Program for the Enhancement of Partnership between Ukraine and NATO,” the President added. “We are not planning to stop. We will move confidently further. There are no alternatives to the EU and NATO for Ukraine,” the Head of State emphasized.

Stoltenberg: As sovereign nation, Ukraine has right to choose own path – news politics | UNIAN

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg says that Ukraine has the sovereign right to choose its own path as a sovereign nation. NATO has responded with the biggest reinforcement of its collective defence in decades. NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg says that Ukraine has the sovereign right to choose its own path as a sovereign nation. “We have stepped up support for our close partners, Georgia and Ukraine, sovereign nations with the sovereign right to choose their own path,” Stoltenberg said in his U.S. Congress address on April 3. “In 2014, Russia illegally annexed Crimea.The first time in Europe that one country had taken part of another by force since World War Two,” he said.

President: No alternative to NATO and EU

“Today, when the Russian aggressor violates the norms and rules established in the world cynically and boldly, Ukraine has no alternative to the movement towards NATO for the protection and preservation of its territorial integrity,” President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko noted in his congratulations on the occasion of the NATO’s 70th anniversary published on Facebook. The Head of State reminded that the civilized world had united to create the North Atlantic Alliance 70 years ago, and over the years the Alliance has proved that it stands for peace, stability and human dignity. In addition, he said, NATO has also proved to be the strongest and most effective team of like-minded people as nothing has ever posed a threat to the Allies. Ukraine remains a reliable partner of NATO in building a common and safe future, the President assured. “For all these years, Ukraine has been moving towards the North Atlantic Alliance confidently. We have created a new Ukrainian army from scratch. The region and the world now respect this army. Already today, we are actually the Alliance’s eastern flank both in terms of weapons, experience, and standards,” the Head of State emphasized. Poroshenko noted that Ukrainians are ready to undertake the long-awaited commitment and start to implement the NATO Membership Action Plan. “I believe that the NATO summit in London is precisely the occasion for the Allies to do justice to Ukraine’s contribution to the defense of the Euro-Atlantic community and begin a practical debate on granting our country the MAP. Believing in this, I sign today the regular Annual National Programme of NATO-Ukraine Partnership,” Poroshenko added. Ukraine has no alternatives to NATO and the EU, we do not plan to stop, and we will move further confidently, the President underscored.

Poroshenko signs program of strengthening of Ukraine-NATO partnership

President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko signed the program of intensification of Ukraine-NATO partnership. On April 4, the head of the Ukrainian state congratulated on the 70th anniversary, posting the respective message on Facebook. ‘Congratulations to all allies in the NATO om the important anniversary. 70 years ago, the civilized world united to create the North Atlantic Alliance. Over the years, the Alliance proved it is about peace, stability and human dignity. Over these years, the Alliance also proved it is teh most solid and effective team of like-minded people, – not a single case of a member threatening somebody else’, Poroshenko wrote. ‘Believing in this, I’m signing another yearly program of strengthening partnership between Ukraine and NATO’, he wrote. The President stated that Ukraine highly evaluates the NATO’s solidarity and its stable support in view of the Russian aggression. He stressed that all these years, Ukraine confidently made its way to the North Atlantic Alliance, and it is now ‘ready to take the long anticipated commitments and begin to implement the Action plan to join the NATO’.

Ukraine values partnership with NATO – Groysman

Ukraine highly values partnership with NATO and remains committed to Western values, Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman has written on his Facebook page. — Ukrinform.

Presence of NATO ships in Odesa shows real NATO support in Ukraine in ensuring safety of navigation in region

Ukrainian Defense Minister Stepan Poltorak on Wednesday took part in a reception on boards of the Royal Canadian Navy and Spanish Navy frigates Toronto and Santa Maria, part of the NATO ships, moored in Odesa. Ukrainian Defense Minister Stepan Poltorak on Wednesday took part in a reception on boards of the Royal Canadian Navy and Spanish Navy frigates Toronto and Santa Maria, part of the NATO ships, moored in Odesa. “The presence of the NATO Navy in Odesa shows the real assistance of the Alliance to our country in ensuring the safety of navigation in the Black Sea-Azov region and this is very important for us,” Poltorak wrote on his Facebook page on Wednesday. He said that the frigates’ visit in Odesa is one of the events of cooperation between Ukraine and the Allies. Its main purpose is to conduct joint training and exercises. “At a time when the situation in the Black and Azov Seas is extremely dangerous, this event is a signal of true support of Ukraine, a signal of support of the Ukrainian Navy in a process of reformation. This is a very important step in organizing the interaction with partners in order to meet the Alliance’s criteria. We need to get maximum compatibility during the execution of combat missions. These issues will be in a focus of our attention,” Poltorak said.

NATO ships in Black Sea signify stability of Odesa region

The presence of NATO ships in the Black Sea and the conduct of joint exercises signify stability and security in the region, said Deputy Chairperson of the Odesa Regional State Administration Svitlana Shatalova. — Ukrinform.

US welcomes NATO ships in Black Sea. Photos

The United States welcomes the visits of NATO ships to the Black Sea this week. — Ukrinform.

NATO to hold multi-national Sea Shield 2019 drills in Black Sea – news world | UNIAN

NATO will hold multi-national Sea Shield 2019 naval drills in the Black Sea from April 5 to April 13. Some 2,200 troops will be involved.

Russia ready to respond to NATO presence in Black Sea, – Russia’s MFA

The Russian Federation is ready to respond to NATO presence in the Black Sea region. Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Russia Alexander Grushko stated this, according to Interfax. “We will study the case scrupulously. If any additional military and technical measures are needed, we will undertake them,” Grushko said. According to the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, from the military perspective, Russia is ready for “any possible turns in the sphere of military security.” “Our positions are clear: any increase of NATO’s presence in the Black Sea is pointless from the military perspective. It will strengthen the security in neither the region nor in NATO itself, and new military risks can appear,” Grushko stressed. According to Press Secretary of the Russian President Dmitry Peskov, Russia is not content with the preparation of the package of sanctions against Russia’s presence in the Black Sea. “Our attitude is negative. We do not understand the reasons,” Peskov answered to journalists on Wednesday. “The situation with the Kerch Strait and shipping is rather clear, it is in accordance with the international rights and laws. The position of the Russian Federation is rather gradual and clear as well,” Peskov added.

Russia asks Ukraine to resume air traffic – news economics | UNIAN

Moscow seeks talks with Ukraine on the resumption of direct flights between the two countries. The Russian aviation agency claims this would be “in the interests of the peoples”.

Czaputowicz, Volker discuss further support for Ukraine

Polish Foreign Minister Jacek Czaputowicz and United States Special Representative for Ukraine Negotiations Kurt Volker discussed further support for Ukraine and condemnation of the illegal actions of Russia in Ukraine. — Ukrinform.

Russia should ensure free passage through Kerch Strait – EU

The EU condemns the systematic denial of access for the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to certain border areas in Donbas controlled by Russian-backed armed groups, as well as to the Crimean peninsula and coastal areas east of Mariupol. — Ukrinform.

Michele A. Berdy | How Russians Are Shown And View Ukraine – To Inform is to Influence

Russia has a unique perspective compared with much of the rest of the world. Russians view television as their most reliable source of news. Russian news shows, as a result, are carefully orchestrated. Carefully orchestrated chaos would be a more accurate description because the programs tend to be loud, abrasive, and bombastic. Quite often, a group of ‘experts’ gathers and arrogantly pronounce judgment on the subject at hand. The Moscow Times is a fairly independent news source, their Michele A. Berdy watched five hours of Russian television discussing Ukraine. Notice how Russians are being molded by Russian TV to belittle Ukraine. This article is well written and her observations are quite illustrative. Enjoy! </end editorial>

Poll: Majority Of Russians Support Crimea Annexation, But Worry About Economic Effects

A new poll shows that a majority of Russians still support the Kremlin’s annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea Peninsula, but far fewer back any similar move toward the parts of the war-torn eastern Ukrai…

Leonid Ragozin | Russia and Ukraine Fight, But Their People Want Reconciliation – Bloomberg

Thousands have died in five years of war, and a recent poll shows citizens in both countries are ready to move on.

Ukraine blamed in Russian Duma of inflicting “damage” on peninsula worth over US$23 bln – news politics | UNIAN

“Economic losses”, which Crimea had allegedly suffered during the period of being part of Ukraine, are tentatively estimated at more than 1.5 trillion rubles (about US$23 billion), claims the so-called deputy of the Russian State Duma from the annexed Crimea, a member of the financial market committee Andrei Kozenko. Among other things, calls were voiced for assessing “moral damage” to local residents. “Economic losses”, which Crimea had allegedly suffered during the period of being part of Ukraine, are tentatively estimated at more than 1.5 trillion rubles (about US$23 billion), claims the so-called deputy of the Russian State Duma from the annexed Crimea, a member of the financial market committee Andrei Kozenko. “According to the most conservative estimates, the amount of damage in the designated areas already significantly exceeds 1.5 trillion [rubles],” he said at the first meeting of the relevant State Duma working group, TASS reports. According to Kozenko, the amount of “lost revenues” of the Crimean budget over the 23 years in Ukraine could be about 690 billion rubles.

Two Ukrainians Jailed For 14 Years In Crimea On Sabotage Charges

A Moscow-controlled court in Crimea has sentenced two Ukrainian citizens to 14 years in prison after convicting them of plotting sabotage on the Russian-occupied Ukrainian peninsula.

‘Ukrainian saboteurs’ Dudka, Bessarabov sentenced to 14 years in prison

A “court” in Sevastopol has given a verdict against two suspects in the so-called case of Ukrainian saboteurs Volodymyr Dudka and Oleksiy Bessarabov, sentencing them both to 14 years in prison, according to Russian news agency Interfax. — Ukrinform.

Bessarabov, Dudka sentenced to 14 years in trumped up case of “Ukrainian saboteurs” in Crimea – news politics | UNIAN

Volodymyr Dudka and Oleksiy Bessarabov, the two Ukrainian nationals falsely accused by the Kremlin-controlled so-called “Sevastopol City Court” of sabotage, were sentenced to 14 years in prison, according to the Crimean Human Rights Group. Neither of the accused pleaded guilty to charges.

Kyiv demands Moscow return 113 convicted Ukrainians

Ukraine has sent a note to Russia demanding the transfer to the Ukrainian authorities of 113 Ukrainian citizens illegally held in Russia and the temporarily occupied territory of Ukraine in violation of international humanitarian law and international human rights law, the Ukrainian Justice Ministry has reported. — Ukrinform.

Bulls-eye hit: Joint Forces destroy enemy ammo supply vehicle (Video) – news war | UNIAN

The K-2 combat group out of the 54th Separate Mechanized Brigade of Ukraine’s Armed Forces in a targeted strike destroyed an ammo supply vehicle of the Russian proxy forces in Donbas. Ukrainian Army officer Anatoly Shtefan has uploaded on Youtube a drone video capturing the hit.

Ukrainian troops destroy enemy IFV in Donbas – news war | UNIAN

Over the past day, April 3, Russian occupation forces in Donbas six times violated the ceasefire regime, including four times using weapons banned by the Minsk agreements, the Joint Forces Operation Staff reports. Coming under fire, Joint Forces delivered an adequate response, eliminating two militants and wounding another three.

Kyiv Says Two Ukrainian Soldiers Killed In Conflict In East

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

Blast Injures Man Suspected Of Planting Bomb Under Car In Kyiv

A man suspected of planting a bomb under the car of a Ukrainian security officer was severely injured overnight when the bomb exploded in the parking lot of a Kyiv shopping center.

Security operative’s car blown up in Kyiv. PHOTO

04.04.19 12:52 – Security operative’s car blown up in Kyiv. PHOTO The attacker who planted the bomb was reportedly heavily injured as the device set off prematurely. View news.

Security operative’s car blown up in Kyiv: journalist (Photo) – News of Ukraine | UNIAN

A saboteur overnight Thursday attempted to plant an explosive device under the car owned by an operative of Ukraine’s security services. The attacker who planted the bomb was reportedly heavily injured as the device set off prematurely.

Moment of car blast in Kyiv caught on CCTV cameras – News of Ukraine | UNIAN

Explosion of a Ukrainian intelligence operative’s car which rocked Kyiv’s Holosiyivsky district overnight April 4, was recorded by CCTV cameras. The vehicle belonged to an intelligence operative.

227 Ukrainian servicepersons get state awards this year

Since the beginning of 2019, 227 Ukrainian servicepersons have received state awards. — Ukrinform.

Ukraine conducts successful long-range precision strike missile test – Defence Blog

Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine Oleksandr Turchynov said Ukraine has successfully conducted a long-range precision strike missile test on 4 April. On Thursday, the advanced version of Vilkha missile system, called the Vilkha-M, has been tested, with its missiles being capable of striking the target almost twice as long as those that are currently on armament of the Armed Forces if Ukraine. The NSDC Secretary reminded that last year, the mass production of the “Vilkha” missile system was launched; the system was put on armament of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, “its missiles hit the target precisely at a distance of 70 km”. “But our designers and manufacturers continued to work on the further improvement of missilery, and very important tests of the modernized “Vilkha-M” system, with its new missiles striking at a distance of 130 km, have been carried out today”. According to Mr. Turchynov, the use of missiles for the destruction of targets at the maximum range, as well as the accuracy and efficiency of the target destruction was checked. “The missiles confirmed the specified characteristics, precisely destroying the targets at a distance of 120 and 130 kilometers”, – he said adding that the work of the new command system, the effectiveness of the navigation equipment, and the quality of the new missile fire control system were also checked. “Within the shortest time, we received a more powerful missile, and I want to emphasize that the work of our scientists and designers within the framework of the implementation of the missile program approved by the NSDC, continues systematically”, – the NSDC Secretary noticed. He informed that in the near future, it is expected to complete the development of a new generation of missiles of this class, capable of striking targets at distances of 200 and more kilometers.

“Vilkha-M” – range has been doubled | MIL.IN.UA

Posted by: Editorial April 04, 2019 News of the military-industrial complex 0 CommentsToday, a new modernized Vilkha-M complex has been tested, whose missiles are capable of striking the target at a distance of 130 km – twice as large as those armed with the Armed Forces.This is reported by the press service of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine. Last year the mass production of a new powerful Vilkha missile system, which was adopted by the Armed Forces of Ukraine, began to be serially launched, whose missiles are precisely hit by the target at a distance of 70 km.Compared to the previous model, the range of Vilkha-M is almost twice as high”. But our designers and manufacturers continued to work on the further development of missile technology, and today there have been very important tests of the modernized complex “Vilkha-M “, whose new missiles strike at a distance of 130 km”, – said the Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine Alexander Turchinov. According to O. Turchinov, during the tests, the use of new missiles for the purpose of destroying the maximum range, as well as the accuracy and efficiency of the destruction of the target were tested. “Also checked the work of the new control system, the effectiveness of new navigation equipment, and the quality of the new start-up control system,” he said.”As soon as possible, we received a more powerful rocket, and I want to emphasize that the work of our scientists and designers within the framework of the implementation of the missile program approved by the National Security and Defense Council, systematically continues,” said the Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine.He said that in the near future the completion of the development of a new generation of missiles of this class, capable of striking targets more than 200 kilometers.Recall that the start of serial production of ammunition to the national missile complex “Vilkha” began last year.For the first time, the president of Ukraine announced on the project “Vilkha” January 27, 2016 at a meeting of the National Security and Defense Council. The missile is being developed by experts from Dnipropetrovsk Design Bureau “Yuzhnoye”. But the control system, which is most likely equipped with inertial guidance, is created by the Kyiv design bureau “Luch”.

Vilkha missile complex tested successfully. Video

“I congratulate Ukraine on successful testing of the Vilkha high-accuracy multiple launch rocket system with an increased range of action, which is long-awaited by the troops,” President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko posted on Facebook. As the President noted, it is very symbolic that the tests took place on the NATO’s 70th anniversary. The President assured that Ukraine would continue to move towards NATO, reform the Armed Forces and increase their combat capabilities. “Ukraine is actually the NATO’s eastern flank, trained and well-armed. We go to NATO not as a beggar but as a full-fledged, equal partner that defends democracy and freedom on the European continent, repelling the aggressor – the Russian Federation,” the President stressed.

Greetings to Ukrainians on the successful tests of the system “Vilkha M”

I congratulate Ukraine on the successful trials of the “Vilkha M” complex, a system salvo fire with increased precision, with an increased level of action, which are very much awaiting today in the war. It is very symbolic that these trials took place in the 70’s of the creation of NATO. Our course is towards NATO, we reform our Armed Forces, we increase their combat capabilities. Ukraine today is, in fact, NATO’s eastern flank, trained and well-armed. We can not help, but as a full, equal partner who builds democracy, freedom on the European continent today, defending the aggressor – the Russian Federation.

In the Odessa region two missile systems will be tested

In the Odessa region two missile systems will be tested Recently, in the Odessa region, will test two missile systems that will increase the opportunities for protecting the sea coast and the land territory in the face of Russian threat. This was stated today by the Minister of Defense of Ukraine during the answers to media questions. “In the near future, in the Odessa region, tests will be carried out on two missile systems, and we hope that these tests will be successful, which will increase the capabilities and effectiveness of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in terms of protecting the seaside and land territory

Ukrainian army received Airborne Systems parachutes

the paratroop systems manufactured by the Airborne Systems North America company will be used by the Airborne Assault Forces of Ukraine

The seventh Assault Boat for the Navy was launched in Kyiv

Yesterday, April 2, a ceremony for launching a small armored artillery boat project 58155, which is the seventh boat of this type, was held in the factory “Smith on Rybalsky”. This is reported by the press service of the Naval Forces Command of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

President: The whole senior management of Ukroboronprom must be tested on the polygraph — Official website of the President of Ukraine

“We appeal to the Government to ensure the organization of the testing of the entire senior management of Ukroboronprom on the polygraph. Separately prepare the lists of those who are to undergo the test. I ask you to include the heads of state enterprises of the defense industry, both the heads of enterprises and those who are responsible for financial activity,” President Petro Poroshenko said during a meeting with Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine Oleksandr Turchynov and Under Secretary of the NSDC Serhiy Kryvonos. The Head of State heard the report by Serhiy Kryvonos on the proposals for examination of Ukroboronprom and the reform of the defense sector. “In case of finding grounds, I ask you to transfer the relevant results of the polygraph testing to the counterintelligence of the Security Service of Ukraine or to the law enforcement agencies. If certain circumstances of committing a crime are revealed,” Petro Poroshenko noted. The President also stressed that on the basis of the recommendations of Colonel Kryvonos, he would appeal to the Government for the immediate financing of the international audit of Ukroboronprom. He added that the decision would be made in April. Petro Poroshenko also emphasized that audit should be also conducted by the State Audit Service of Ukraine and instructed to report him on the timing of the beginning of the audit. The Head of State stressed that the Accounting Chamber of Ukraine should conduct an audit of Ukroboronprom’s activities. He instructed the Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council Oleksandr Turchynov to take control over the issue and report on the results of the inspection. Petro Poroshenko stressed the need to include public organizations in the inspection and inform the public about the results of these inspections. The President also underscored the importance of accelerating the consideration in the Verkhovna Rada of the bill on amendments to the law on the state defense order. “We have to disclose this information,” Petro Poroshenko said. He added that he had consulted with our international partners and they fully supported those steps. Regarding the issue of the Supervisory Board of Ukroboronprom, the Head of State supported the proposal to involve representatives of our strategic partners to ensure the efficiency and transparency of its functioning. NSDC Secretary Oleksandr Turchynov reported that the majority of the enterprises of the defense industry worked in regular mode and effectively enough, in particular on the implementation of a missile program approved by the decision of the National Security and Defense Council. “In the near future, it is planned to test new powerful rocket systems and, given their importance for strengthening our country’s defense, we invite you to personally take part in the final stage of the testing,” he said. The President noted that the latest missile weaponry should be provided to the Armed Forces after the completion of the tests that will take place in the next few days.

John McCain Street appears in Kyiv

Kyiv City Council decided to rename Ivana Kudry Street after the late American senator McCain

Kyiv Council renamed Ivana Kudri street in Kyiv to John McCain street

04.04.19 15:30 – Kyiv Council renamed Ivana Kudri street in Kyiv to John McCain street The Kyiv City Council has renamed Ivana Kudri street in Kyiv to John McCain street. View news.

Kyiv Council renames Ivana Kudri street in Kyiv to John McCain street

The Kyiv City Council has renamed Ivana Kudri street in Kyiv to John McCain street. — Ukrinform.

U.S. Embassy calls on VR to approve amendments to mine action law as soon as possible

The U.S. Embassy in Ukraine has called on the Verkhovna Rada to approve amendments to the law on mine action to allow direct donor funding. — Ukrinform.

Ukraine first country to involve foreign experts in judge selection process – Hooper

Ukraine has become the first sovereign state in the world to involve foreign experts in the process of selection of judges. — Ukrinform.

Ukraine increased export of berries almost five times over past four year

Ukraine has increased the export of berries by almost five times over the past four years: from 4.5 thousand tonnes to 23.5 thousand tonnes, the Agrarian Policy and Food Ministry’s press service reported. — Ukrinform.

In Dueling Videos, Zelenskiy And Poroshenko Debate A Debate. Can They Fill A 70,000-Seat Stadium?

Volodymyr Zelenskiy and incumbent Petro Poroshenko have egged each other on since they advanced to a presidential runoff. But in upping the stakes to an Olympic-sized event, they both may have bitt…

Ukrainian broadcaster announces start of talks with presidential candidates over debates – news politics | UNIAN

Zurab Alasania, Chairman of the Board of the National Public Broadcasting Company of Ukraine (UA:PBC), says the company is starting negotiations with presidential candidates, that is, incumbent President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko and frontrunner of the presidential race Volodymyr Zelensky, regarding the organization of their debates. Both candidates have agreed to hold the debates, the broadcaster chief said.

Poroshenko campaign wants two rounds of debates, at NSC Olympiyskiy, UA:PBC on April 19

Advisor to President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko Rostyslav Pavlenko has spoken in favor of holding presidential debates both at NSC Olympiyskiy Stadium and at the National Public TV and Radio Broadcasting Company (UA:PBC) of Ukraine on April 19.

Poroshenko calls on Zelensky to undergo medical checkup on April 5

Incumbent Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has called on showman and presidential candidate Volodymyr Zelensky to undergo a medical checkup on Friday, April 5, as part of preparations for a presidential debate. — Ukrinform.

Propresidential MP: Poroshenko not to hold debate at stadium – LB.ua news portal

Propresidential MP: Poroshenko not to hold debate at stadium. She says Zelenskyy may play football with the association president. Political – LB.ua news portal. Latest from Ukraine and the world today

Team Zelensky respond to Poroshenko accepting debate challenge – news politics | UNIAN

Chief of Ukrainian election frontrunner Volodymyr Zelensky’s headquarters, Ivan Bakanov, says their team are still waiting for the presidential candidate, incumbent President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko, to fulfill a number of conditions they have set to meet at the debate. The date and time for debates of the two presidential candidates will still be coordinated.

Poroshenko agrees to hold debates with Zelensky at Kyiv’s Olympiyskiy Stadium (Video) – news politics | UNIAN

Presidential candidate and incumbent President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko has agreed to hold a debate with frontrunner of the presidential race Volodymyr Zelensky at Kyiv’s Olympiyskiy Stadium. Zelensky insisted that the event should take place at the Olympiyskiy Stadium.

Poroshenko ready for debate with Zelenskyi at NSK Olimpiyskii. VIDEO

04.04.19 11:59 – Poroshenko ready for debate with Zelenskyi at NSK Olimpiyskii. VIDEO President Petro Poroshenko has made a video address to Ukrainian presidential contender Volodymyr Zelensky regarding the latter’s invitation to hold a presidential debate at the Olimpiyskiy National Sports Complex in Kyiv. View news.

Zelensky invites Poroshenko to debate: “You’ve got 24 hours” – news politics | UNIAN

Frontrunner in the first round of the presidential elections in Ukraine Volodymyr has invited another presidential candidate and incumbent president Petro Poroshenko to hold debates at Kyiv’s Olympiyskiy Stadium. Zelensky insists that all TV channels should be able to broadcast the debates live.

Zelensky invites Poroshenko to debate, gives him 24 hours

Comedian Volodymyr Zelensky has invited incumbent Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko to a presidential debate at the Olimpiyskiy National Sports Complex in Kyiv. — Ukrinform.

Presidential debates: Olimpiyskiy has not received any official applications

The state enterprise National Sports Complex Olimpiyskiy has not received any official applications or draft agreements for arranging a debate between presidential candidates at the stadium. — Ukrinform.

NSK Olimpiyskyi has not received any official applications on debates

04.04.19 14:48 – NSK Olimpiyskyi has not received any official applications on debates The state enterprise National Sports Complex Olimpiyskyi has not received any official applications or draft agreements for arranging a debate between presidential candidates at the stadium. View news.

Presidential debates: Interior Ministry ready to ensure public order at Olimpiyskiy stadium

The Interior Ministry is ready to ensure public order at the Olimpiyskiy stadium in Kyiv during the debate between presidential candidates Petro Poroshenko and Volodymyr Zelensky. — Ukrinform.

Ukrainian election frontrunner’s adviser: Zelenskyi is not pro-Russian candidate

04.04.19 18:03 – Ukrainian election frontrunner’s adviser: Zelenskyi is not pro-Russian candidate Ukrainian election frontrunner Volodymyr Zelenskyi’s legal adviser, Iryna Venediktova, has said the foreign policy of the presidential candidate will be “100% pro-European” if he wins. View news.

Ukrainian election frontrunner’s adviser: Zelensky’s course to be 100% pro-European – news politics | UNIAN

Ukrainian election frontrunner Volodymyr Zelensky’s legal adviser, Iryna Venediktova, has said the foreign policy of the presidential candidate will be “100% pro-European” if he wins. Venediktova says Zelensky is not a “pro-Russian candidate.” Ukrainian election frontrunner Volodymyr Zelensky’s legal adviser, Iryna Venediktova, has said the foreign policy of the presidential candidate will be “100% pro-European” if he wins. The candidate’s team has met with diplomatic representatives of many European countries, she told Hromadske on April 4. “We were able to convey and reassure them that [Zelensky’s] course toward the EU and NATO is a firm one,” she said. “Volodymyr Zelensky’s course will be 100% pro-European. The Association Agreement will be implemented,” she added. Read more on UNIAN: https://www.unian.info/politics/10505385-ukrainian-election-frontrunner-s-adviser-zelensky-s-course-to-be-100-pro-european.html

Ukraine’s presidential elections 2019: Profile of Zelensky’s voter

Overwhelming majority of Zelensky’s electorate are people with secondary and higher education. The first round of presidential elections in Ukraine came to an end. Ukraine’s Central Electoral Commission would officially announce the final results soon, but the three leaders of the presidential race are already known: Volodymyr Zelensky, Petro Poroshenko, and Yulia Tymoshenko. According to the results of counting 100% of electronic protocols, Zelensky was supported by 30.24% (5,713,825 people), Poroshenko took 15.95% (3,014,538 people), and Tymoshenko won 13.4% (2,532,319 people). The Ukrainian exit poll was organized by 112 Ukraine and NewsOne TV channels. Austrian SORA Institute for Social Research and Consulting along with the Ukrainian Social Monitoring Center held the survey of the voters at the exit of the polling stations. The National exit poll and 1+1 exit poll were held, besides the Ukrainian exit poll. Related: Ukraine’s National Public Broadcasting Company ready to hold Poroshenko-Zelensky debates The survey results also allowed to create a so-called portrait of the voter for each candidate. So let us speak about Zelensky’s voters. Typical voter of Volodymyr Zelensky: 44.6% of men and 55.4% of women supported him. 72.3% of people aged from 18 to 49 years cast their votes for Zelensky, 25.9% of voters from 18 to 29 years, 26.8%, of Ukrainians from 30 to 39 years, 19% of people from 40 to 49 years old. Not too many people of pre-retirement and retirement age are among those who voted for Zelensky. So, 14.9% of the respondents from 50 to 59 years old supported Zelensky, 3.8% of people, who are older than 70 years old, and 9% – from 60 to 69 years old.

Portrait of voter: Who voted for Poroshenko?

The first round of presidential elections in Ukraine is over. Very soon, the Central Election Commission will announce the final data on votes counting, but it is already known that Volodymyr Zelensky and Petro Poroshenko will meet the second round. According to the results of the calculation of 99.99 electronic protocols 30.24% (5 713 600 people) voted for Zelensky, and 15.95% (3 014 416 people) – for Poroshenko. Several exit polls were held during the first round on March 31. One of them was conducted by 112 Ukraine, the Institute for Social Research and Consulting (Austria) and the Social Monitoring center. About 25 thousand voters at 500 polling stations were interviewed. Statistical deviation for the leaders of the rating was 2.1%. In the course of the survey,the so-called voter portraits of each of the seven leading candidates were also compiled. We will talk about the top three. And now let’s start with Poroshenko. Portrait of the voter: Who voted for Petro Poroshenko? – Of the entire array of people who supported Poroshenko in the first round, the majority were women (52, 1%), while men were 47.9%. – The age of Poroshenko’s voter is 30-49 years old (39, 4% of all supported candidates). At the same time, approximately the same amount (37,8%) of Poroshenko’s electorate is at the age of 50-69 years. – Most of those who supported Poroshenko have a higher education (52.9%) and have a job (56.7%). In addition, among Poroshenko’s voters there are relatively few pensioners – 29%. For comparison: among Yuliya Tymoshenko’s voters there are 37.8% of such, and among Oleg Lyashko’s voters – 43.2%.

Final Ukraine Results Give Zelenskiy 30 Percent Of Presidential Vote

Ukraine’s election commission has released the final results of the March 31 presidential vote, giving political newcomer Volodymyr Zelenskiy just over 30 percent of the vote.

Ukraine election: Volodymyr Zelensky in major lead after all cast votes counted – news politics | UNIAN

The Central Election Commission processed 100% of the protocols of the precinct election commissions in the first round of presidential elections in Ukraine. The runoff is set to be held April 21 where the frontrunner will meet incumbent President Petro Poroshenko.

Allegations of vote fraud emerge in Donetsk Oblast | KyivPost – Ukraine’s Global Voice

Allegations of vote rigging in Donetsk Oblast in favor of President Petro Poroshenko during the March 31 presidential election have emerged in recent days, according to police and election watchdogs. Donetsk Oblast police reported on April 2 that they have opened criminal cases into alleged voting fraud in the city of Bakhmut, the town of Pokrovske, and in Mangush District. The Opora election watchdog also said it was looking into the alleged violations. Kostyantyn Khivrenko, a spokesman for the Central Election Commission, denied the accusations of voting fraud. He said the commission could only address accusations of vote rigging confirmed by documents. Poroshenko’s campaign spokesman Oleg Medvedev also denied the accusations, saying that international observers had praised the election as transparent. However, Andriy Grudkin, an election observer from civil society group Sylny Gromady at district commission No. 52 in the town of Toretsk, told the Kyiv Post that there had been large-scale ballot stuffing in favor of Poroshenko in Toretsk. Your New City, a civil society group in Toretsk, said that large-scale vote rigging and assaults on election observers had taken place in the city. The group also said that “suspicious groups of people” had been present at most polling stations. The group said that unknown people had stuffed ballots at polling station No. 140702 and fled. Your New City also published a photo of the allegedly stuffed ballots. Presidential candidate Yuriy Karmazin’s representative Valentyna Erimicheva published a video from polling station No. 140704 in Toretsk in which she shows what she says is neat stack of stuffed ballots in favor of Poroshenko. Pro-Russian candidate Yuriy Boyko was the leader in Donetsk Oblast in the election, but some polling stations in civilian areas stand out with anomalously high percentages for Poroshenko in contrast to other civilian polling stations. Boyko said on April 1 that he saw this as evidence of vote fraud. He said he had received 38 percent on average in the oblast, while Poroshenko got 8 percent. In Toretsk, there are three polling stations where Poroshenko won with 68.4 percent, 57.1 percent and 72.3 percent. There are also polling stations with 63.9 percent and 61.3 percent for Poroshenko in Bakhmut, and with 27.8 percent and 41.3 percent for Poroshenko in the city of Volnovakha. Nationwide, Poroshenko won 15.9 percent of the vote. Other polling stations where Poroshenko won were in the village of Shcherbinivka, which reported 47.7 percent for Poroshenko. In the village of Petrivka the president won 66.9 percent, in the village of Oleksandro-Shultyne 39 percent, in the town of Druzhkivka 70.2 percent, in the village of Zaitseve 36.5 percent, in Ocheretyne 53.5 percent, in the village of Novoselivska Persha 51.5 percent, in the village of Pokrovske 69.8 percent, in the town of Yalta 46.6 percent, and in the town of Urzuf 73.2 percent. Meanwhile, U.S.-based electoral geographer Alexander Kireev and Roman Udot, who works at the Russian independent election monitoring agency Golos, published charts that they say show large-scale deviations from the normal distribution of votes in Donetsk Oblast, which they interpret as tampering in favor of Poroshenko.

Ukraine’s Pro-Russian Voters Can Help Kremlin Reclaim Influence – Bloomberg

A better-than-expected showing for Russia-leaning candidates in the first round of Ukraine’s presidential election could mean forces loyal to the Kremlin make inroads at the country’s parliamentary vote later this year.

Pro-Moscow clerics call on Patriarch Bartholomew to walk back independence of Ukraine church – news ukraine | UNIAN

The Holy Synod of the former Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate (UOC-MP) at its Wednesday meeting called on Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I to call off the tomos of autocephaly of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine (OCU). On December 15, 2018, Ukrainian churches united into a single Orthodox Church of Ukraine. The Holy Synod of the former Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate (UOC-MP) at its Wednesday meeting called on Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I to call off the tomos of autocephaly of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine (OCU). “It should be noted that the actions of the Patriarchate of Constantinople in Ukraine caused great harm to Ukrainian Orthodoxy, and also posed a threat to pan-Orthodox unity. We believe that the Patriarchate of Constantinople and the Patriarch Bartholomew personally must admit their mistake and work on correcting it,” the former UOC-MP said in a statement on its website.

 

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