Anonymous expert compilation, analysis, and reporting.
Choke On Coffee Warning applies to Russian brazenness.
THAAD to deploy to Romania. Russia’s latest headache – Precision Strike Missile (PrSM) program. S-350 finally enters production after repeat delays – it does not match the performance of the S-300PS it is replacing. Gutterman on Russia’s opportunism. Yevstratov spells out what was obvious a decade ago – Russia was antagonizing all former Soviet Republics. Russia ramps up trade war on Belarus, Lukashenko threatens to cut off Russian oil imports – he has a pipeline now from Odessa to pump crude from a Black Sea terminal. Amb Huntsman on Russia’s hostage games. After police and RNatGuard refuse to suppress protests in the Caucasus, Russia looks at using regular Army units instead. RuNet legislation passes. Baltics update – KGB archives being opened. Poland demands Smolensk wreckage, Russia refuses. CEPA on hybrid warfare.
CW update – Russia is truly brazen.
Amb Volker on Ukraine. Pres Poroshenko visits BRD, meets with Kramp-Karrenbauer, Chancellor Merkel and Greens. Crimea update. Donbas update – 9:1 LER again. Ukraine to reboot its space industry. Politics / economy reports.
Another interesting day on the election front – the two contenders arguing publicly on TV over when and where to hold the debates, the TSN Youtube clip is well worth viewing. Zelenskiy visits Macron, to be followed by Pres Poroshenko. Zelenskiy backflips on more Russia related statements. Nasty (but funny) Youtube and Twitter games, the campaign is looking ever more like recent Western campaigns. Zelenskiy Alien poster – does the Alien represent Putin or Poroshenko?
NATO’s Aegis Ashore Ballistic Missile Defence site in Romania will undergo a long-planned update this summer. This update, which has been taking place across the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defence system fleet, will not provide any offensive capability to the Aegis Ashore missile defence system. The scheduled update is part of the United States European Phased Adaptive Approach to ballistic missile defence, which was announced in September 2009. During the update, the United States will fulfill its commitment to NATO’s Ballistic Missile Defence by the temporary deployment of a Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system to Deveselu in Romania. The THAAD unit will be under NATO operational control and the full political control of the North Atlantic Council. It will only remain operational until the Aegis Ashore Romania site is back online. The update and deployment are expected to last several weeks. In accordance with NATO’s Ballistic Missile Defence system, the THAAD unit will be focused on potential threats from outside the Euro-Atlantic area. Aegis Ashore Romania is purely a defensive system. Topics Ballistic missile defence News Key missile defence site declared operational 12 May. 2016
A Terminal High Altitude Area Defense system is deploying to the eastern flank this summer.
On 11 April, NATO confirmed the US plans to deploy of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense system to Romania. According to a news release put out by NATO officials, the United States will fulfill its commitment to NATO’s Ballistic Missile Defence by the temporary deployment of a Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system to Deveselu in Romania. “The THAAD unit will be under NATO operational control and the full political control of the North Atlantic Council. It will only remain operational until the Aegis Ashore Romania site is back online. The update and deployment are expected to last several weeks,” said in news release. Also stressed that In accordance with NATO’s Ballistic Missile Defence system, the THAAD unit will be focused on potential threats from outside the Euro-Atlantic area. The Army will temporarily deploy its Terminal High Altitude Area Defense system, which will integrate into NATO’s ballistic missile defense architecture. The THAAD unit, which comes from the Fort Hood, Texas-based 69th Air Defense Artillery Brigade, will operate at Naval Support Facility Deveselu. Once in place, NATO’s Allied Air Command will assume operational control of the unit, U.S. European Command said. “This site provides a defensive capability to deter future conflicts, and to defend ourselves and our NATO allies, should deterrence fail,” EUCOM said. The THAAD element provides a globally-transportable, rapidly-deployable capability to intercept ballistic missiles inside or outside the atmosphere during their final, or terminal, phase of flight. THAAD is strictly a defensive weapon system. The system uses hit-to-kill technology where kinetic energy destroys the incoming target. The THAAD system is a key element of the Ballistic Missile Defense System (BMDS). The system defends U.S.troops, allied forces, population centers and critical infrastructure against short and medium-range ballistic missiles. The United States will temporarily deploy the THAAD missile defense system to Romania to provide defense while technical work is underway on the Aegis Ashore Ballistic Missile Defence site.
The U.S. is threatening to withhold the F-35 fighter jet from Turkey if it accepts a Russian air defense system. That could be bad news for Turkish businesses.
The U.S. Army needs more mobile firepower to counter Russia’s aggression in Europe and to achieve parity with Iskander ballistic missiles in the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad. Senior Russian officials have repeatedly stated about its “aggressive military posturing” and that Moscow would use Iskander and S-400 surface-to-air missiles from the exclave of Kaliningrad. For reference, Kaliningrad is a Russian enclave sandwiched between Poland and Lithuania. In terms of capability, the Iskander system has a range of up to 440 miles and could reach Berlin, as well as two-thirds of Poland and Sweden. To counteract the possible threat in Eastern Europe and in the whole world, the US Army decided to develop the Precision Strike Missile (PrSM) program. The new PrSM (pronounced “prism”) will be a surface-to-surface, all weather, precision-strike guided missile fired from the M270A1 Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS) and the M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS). The baseline missile, which will be developed and fielded to engage a wide variety of targets at ranges up to 310 miles, will emphasize imprecisely located area and point targets. Primary emphasis for follow-on spirals will be on increased range, lethality and engagement of time sensitive, moving, hardened and fleeting targets. The PrSM programme will become the new alternatives of the Army Tactical Missile System (ATACMS). “Prism” will replace the existing aged inventory of non-Insensitive Munitions and Cluster Munition policy compliant ATACMS. According to Army’s officials, the PrSM will destroy/neutralize/suppress targets at ranges from 250-plus miles using missile-delivered indirect precision fires. PrSM provides field artillery units with long range and deep strike capability while supporting brigade, division, corps, Army, theater, joint/coalition forces and Marine Air-Ground Task Forces in full, limited or expeditionary operations. “We are a fires-based Army,” said Army Secretary Mark T. Esper about new weapon programs while testifying before the House Appropriations Committee’s defense subcommittee on Capitol Hill. “In order to gain freedom of maneuver, you have to have fires and movement.” Plans are to develop a long-range hypersonic weapon, extended range cannon artillery, long-range cannon and precision strike missile, also known as Prism. “All of those programs in combination, both the acquisition piece of it and the fires piece of it, will reestablish U.S. dominance in fires” Milley said. The development of a new high-precision guided missile is being conducted with the participation of two US defense contractors, Raytheon and Lockheed Martin. It is assumed that prototype demonstration flight tests to be held later in the year with an early operational capability as soon as 2023.
Russia has launched production of a modern S-350 air defense systems, known as the Vityaz, the national media announced on 12 April. The next-generation air defense systems are now being mass produced, the TASS state news agency reported with reference to the statement made by Deputy defense minister Alexey Krivoruchko. Krivoruchko also stressed that the first launches, made on March 26, were positive and the air defense missile system successfully passed state tests: “At the same time, the production of the first serial set started, delivery will be provided in 2019”. According to Krivoruchko, the S-350 Vityaz is intended to replace the S-300PS, established in 1983. This air defense system has a maximum target radius of 60 kilometers and a maximum strike height of 30 kilometers. It was assumed that the installation will go into service in 2013, but the tests were thwarted. Last month, the Zhukov Air-Space Academy, Lieutenant General Vladimir Lyaporov, announced that the new modern S-500 and S-350 air defense systems will enter service with the Russian armed forces soon. Speaking to newspaper Krasnaya Zvezda, Vladimir Lyaporov said: “I would like to note that in 2019, the first group of officers will complete the academy’s course to use the S-500 systems. The systems are yet to enter service, but we expect them to do so in the near future”. “At the end of the year, the center is expected to receive first S-350 Vityaz systems,” the general added. S-350 Vityaz is designed to defend important administrative and military facilities from airstrikes. It operates automatically and the team deploys and controls the weapon. S-350 includes command post 50K6E, multifunctional radars 50N6E and launchers 50P6E with 12 9M96E2 missiles each. The deployment time is five minutes. The crew comprises three men.
The 50R6 Vityaz missile system (Russian: ЗРК Витязь) or S-350E is a Russian medium-range surface-to-air missile system developed by GSKB Almaz-Antey. Its purpose is to replace the S-300PS and S-300PT-1A. The system design traces its roots from the joint South Korean/Russian KM-SAM project and uses the same 9M96 missile as the S-400 missile system.
From Syria to Sudan, Libya to Venezuela — Russian President Vladimir Putin is trying to leverage Russia’s resources for outsize gain but often pulling back before things get too risky. Many of the Kremlin’s domestic actions are marked by a similar sense of opportunism.
Paul Goble Staunton, April 11 – Since 1991, Moscow has sought to retain its influence and control in the post-Soviet space at a lower cost than it paid in Soviet times, thus leaving the non-Russian countries around it in worse shape than they would otherwise be and rapidly leading ever more of them to seek ties with other centers of power, Anton Yevstratov says. When these countries were republics within the USSR, Moscow controlled them but provided assistance; but since 1991, the specialist on the Middle East says, it has pursued a classical neo-colonial approach, seeking to retain control but without providing the assistance it did earlier (newcaucasus.com/politics/17431-rossiyskiy-neokolonializm-instrumentyi-i-sut.html). That approach which relies both on the continuation of past ties, the use of frozen conflicts, and the absence of outside influence has worked well in some places; but it is failing in many and will fail in more, not because these countries are Russophobic, as Moscow likes to suggest, but simply because generational change and national needs make that inevitable. Consequently, unless Moscow changes its course, providing more assistance or ceding more control, it will find itself surrounded not by a neo-colonial empire but rather by countries that eye it with increasing hostility, again not because the peoples involved want that but because they have no other choice. Yevstratov says that Moscow’s neo-colonialism rests on three things: the inability of many of the former republics to separate their economies from Russia at least in the short term, Moscow’s ability to exploit conflicts on their territories and serve as an arbiter, and most important elites who grew up in Soviet times and have no other model of behavior. As a result, for much of the post-Soviet period, “the de jure independent countries of the former USSR have turned out to be de facto ‘the new colonies’ of Russia,” he continues. But the situation of these “’de facto colonies’ is much more difficult than that which existed in Soviet times” because Moscow wants control but doesn’t want to provide aid. Officials in Moscow have assumed that this situation can continue indefinitely, he says; but “in recent years, the paradigm is changing. Post-Soviet societies and countries are changing. Their leadership is changing. In some places, such changes are occurring by a natural and evolutionary path … in others there are occurring revolutions.” “As a result,” Yevstratov says, “a whole raft of post-Soviet states intend and what is the main thing are ready to interact with the world as a whole and with Russia in particular on completely new bases, those of partnership, equality, mutually profitable ones but not in any case on neo-colonial ones.” These changes are happening not because of any Russophobia in these populations, whatever many in Moscow believe. They are happening because Moscow makes demands but doesn’t provide assistance; and consequently, these countries are looking to themselves and to others for the future, not to Moscow. Because of its aggressive rhetoric and sometimes its aggressive actions, however, “Russia itself is pushing away the post-Soviet republics and literally throwing them into the embrace of its geopolitical opponents,” the analyst says. Only if Moscow changes course in its work with these countries can it hope to have influence – and influence based on an entirely new set of arrangements. Unless and until that happens, Yevstratov says, Moscow will see ever more of these countries move away from it – leaving Russia without the allies it could have if it approached these countries in a different way and instead surrounding the country with other states that will view it with suspicion and hostility.
MINSK — Belarusian President Alyaksandr Lukashenka has lambasted Moscow for what he called “sanctions” against Belarusian goods and hinted he could block Russian oil deliveries to Europe. Speaking at a cabinet meeting in Minsk on April 11, Lukashenka said Russia had “closed” its market for a number of Belarusian goods. “They [Russia] are under [Western] sanctions themselves… but they use the same weapon in fighting against their closest allies,” Lukashenka said. On April 10, Russia’s agricultural oversight agency, Rosselkhoznadzor, announced that apples and pears from Belarus will be barred from Russia’s market. That move comes amid growing pressure from Moscow for Belarus to further integrate with Russia. Lukashenka has recently criticized increases in the price of Russian energy as part of Moscow’s efforts to persuade his country to abandon its independence. In his remarks on April 11, Lukashenka ordered the government to start pipeline repairs “if necessary,” a move, he said, that would suspend Russian oil deliveries to Europe via Belarus. “They hit us on our left cheek and we offer them the right one, what is this?” Lukashenka asked the government members and ordered them to outline “corresponding measures” as a response to Moscow’s “sanctions” by “next week.” Belarus is a member of the Eurasian Economic Union (EES) and the Collective Security Treaty Organization, regional groupings that observers say Russian President Vladimir Putin uses to bolster Moscow’s influence in the former Soviet Union and to counter the European Union and NATO.
Tensions between Russia and Belarus are heating up in the wake of a tax maneuver by Moscow that deprived Minsk of millions in oil resale profits. The situation has been further aggravated by Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko’s refusal to allow Russia to deploy a military airbase in the country, refusal to transition to the Russian ruble, and apparent refusal to let his country become part of Russia, which would have enabled Vladimir Putin to remain in power after 2024. In response to Minsk’s decision to raise its tariffs for Russian oil transit to Europe by 23%, Moscow has decided to cut off Belarusian fruit producers from the Russian market. As of 12 April, Russia will ban the import of apples and pears from Belarus. In the first week of April, Russian customs authorities arrested 39 vehicles with sanctioned produce that lacked the necessary phytosanitary certification, 36 of them containing apples or pears, the Russian regulatory authority reported. “The service connects the present situation to the previously imposed restrictions on the re-export of fruit and vegetable produce from the Belarusian Republic. These confirmed the illegitimacy of the phytosanitary certificates issued by Belarus that were accepted earlier,” the department added. The decision was made five days after Transneft president Nikolay Tokarev announced that Belarus had informed his company of its intentions to raise oil transit tariffs by a further 23%. This would be the second tariff hike in 2019: there was a 7.6% increase in January this year and a 6.7% increase last year. Tokarev said that the matter would be discussed by the governments of both countries. The last attempt at negotiations, when Lukashenko came to the Kremlin bearing three sacks of potatoes for Putin, did not have any significant results. The dispute began with a tax maneuver in the Russian oil sector. Russia currently does not charge an export tariff on the oil it sends to Belarus. This allows Minsk to resell some of the oil abroad and pocket its own export tariff. However, by 2024 Russia intends to abolish the export tariff entirely, and instead raise resource extraction taxes. As a result, Belarus will no longer get discounted oil which it can resell at a profit, depriving it of $300-400 million in revenue in 2019 alone. Unless Belarus is compensated for these losses, Russia could lose its only ally in the West, Lukashenko warned Putin in one of their meetings. Russia has categorically refused to compensate Belarus for its losses. According to Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov, the tax policy is Russia’s internal affair.
Russia-Belarus relations are being stretched to their limits. In response to the Russian phytosanitary regulatory authority’s recent decision to …
The U.S. ambassador to Russia has urged Moscow to either produce evidence in the case of jailed U.S. citizen Paul Whelan or release him.
U.S. Ambassador to Russia Jon Huntsman says he has seen no evidence to back up espionage charges against Paul Whelan, an American detained in Moscow. In an interview with RFE/RL’s Russian Service in Prague on April 12, Huntsman said he hopes that the cases of two Americans detained in Russia will be resolved as quickly as possible.
A Moscow court has extended until July 14 the house arrest of U.S. investor Michael Calvey, whose detention stunned the business community in Moscow and clouded the investment climate.
The financier, who has been ordered to house arrest, has advocated for foreign investment in Russia despite its worsening relationship with the West.
A Russian court released U.S. investor Michael Calvey on Thursday after two months in jail and placed him under house arrest, softening his treatment in a fraud case that has rattled the business community.
Paul Goble Staunton, April 11 – In the wake of protests in Ingushetia and Arkhangelsk where local police and even Russian Guards units failed to act as quickly or even at all in the ways Moscow hoped, the central Russian government has decided to set up a system under which units of the regular army could be deployed to suppress popular risings, the Region.Expert portal says. In any state, the military is the last line of defense; and if a government signals that it is preparing that defensive line, it is an indication that it no longer has confidence that its other outer defenses will hold, a signal that the situation of the powers that be is more dire than they acknowledge openly – and one that makes the use of the army in such situations problematic. Russian news agencies (rbc.ru/politics/09/04/2019/5caca4919a79475d5519d425 and m.ura.news/news/1052380223) are reporting that Defense Minister Sergey Shoygu has announced that his agency will open in all the regions of the Russian Federation “centers for the coordination of the work of the force structures in crisis situations.” The first of these “centers” will be established in Tula, an oblast selected the Tallinn-based portal suggests because the governor, Andrey Dyumin, is Putin’s former bodyguard and thus perhaps especially impressed by the idea that the military could play a useful role in defending not only the Russian state system but him personally (region.expert/army/). If Shoygu’s plan goes into effect there are elsewhere – and the regionalist portal notes that the Kremlin website has not yet posted an order to that effect – Moscow will have put in place a new system to allow it to introduce military force in places where there are massive public protests or disorders and where it may no longer have confidence in local police. But as Region.Expert points out, this “hope that the army will suppress massive public actions is even more illusory than that the MVD and Russian Guard will.” Those institutions consist of people selected and trained at crowd control and whose raison d’etre is to be used to defend the state against the people. Armies, especially draft-based militaries like the one in the Russian Federation, in contrast, consist of ordinary people who are trained and prepared to be used against foreign enemies but are not in many cases equally well prepared to be used against their own people, especially because the draftees spring from them. That suggests the Russian military will either have to change its training program – focusing ever more on controlling the domestic population than on fighting abroad or against some notional invasion – or face the risk other states have in using a tool that may prove counterproductive. Indeed, Region.Expert concludes, “an attempt o fusing the army against the people can lead to results exactly the reverse of what the powers that be want” and even lead to events like those in Romania of 30 years ago when such an attempt did not lead to the defense of the ruler and his state but to his overthrow and that of his hated system.
Lawmakers approve a bill that would expand government control over the internet and whose opponents fear heralds a new era of widespread censorship
On Thursday, April 11, the State Duma adopted the second reading of draft legislation designed to “ensure the safe and sustainable functioning” of Internet service in Russia. Lawmakers say the law will defend the country against foreign aggression, serving as insurance, in case Russia’s global Internet access is shut off from abroad. The legislation effectively lays out how Russia’s Internet infrastructure would work in isolation from the outside world. Meduza reviews the project’s key features.
Paul Goble Staunton, April 11 – The card files listing Latvians who cooperated with the Soviet secret police are only the tip of the iceberg of materials about NKVD-MCB-KGB sparked an enormous scandal in that country, but these files represent only a small and far from the most important records of such cooperation. Far more serious records, called “the journals of the KGB” are scheduled to be released next month; and they will show far more than just a list of names but contain details on what specific individuals did. Such records will be harder to dismiss or ignore and are likely to lead to even more soul searching and even a political crisis. In advance of that event, Tatyana Timuka of Argumenti Nedeli spoke with a retired KGB colonel who spoke on conditions of anonymity – she identified him only as “Mr. W” – about the various kinds of Soviet secret police files and what they show and don’t show concerning the Soviet penetration of occupied Latvia (argumenti.ru/world/2019/04/608199). When the card files were released, many people disputed them, especially if they were among those listed, because of inaccuracies of various kinds, but the KGB colonel says that these cards were “nothing serious. Purely technical material. And perhaps there could be changed the dates of birth and possibly the places of work” for one reason or another. For the organs, accuracy on the cards was not important. Where it was required and was maintain was in the personal files. These, however, are not in Latvia: “they are in Russia; and they may be not even in Moscow but in provincial cities where there exist special preservation centers.” Latvians will never see them: “Russia never will make access to them ‘open.’” But far more will be revealed when the KGB journals are released next month than was when the card files were. The latter contain many errors; and worse, from the point of view of accuracy, Latvians have been able to bribe their way into having the cards removed by paying from 100 to 500 euros, Mister W says. Nonetheless, even the card files are instructive. For example, they showed that the current Russian Orthodox metropolitan of Latvia worked for the KGB. But that shouldn’t surprise anyone, the retired KGB agent says, because the largest group of informers were from the ranks of priests and ministers, “even during the war and even on the territory occupied by the enemy.” When German forces re-opened churches in Latvia to help them keep the population under control, people attended and made confessions. What could be more natural? The Soviet organs recognized this and sought to develop such priests and ministers as sources of information. That became easier when Stalin changed his religious policy during the war. Sometimes the Soviets even introduced priests and ministers into occupied Latvia by parachute drop. These people helped organize the resistance by drawing on religious sympathies of the population. They worked for the NKVD and for the Soviets against the Germans in various ways. It wasn’t just the Latvians who cooperated with the Germans, Mister W says. There were many ethnic Russians as well, people who were angry at the Soviets for what they had done to them or their relatives. The Germans exploited this and were able to recruit many because otherwise these people would have been sent to German camps. The former KGB colonel recalls that his Orthodox Russian grandmother who lived in Latvia was someone who tried to help people taken prisoner by the Germans by dropping food near where the prisoners were marched by. The German soldiers shouted at her but she said she had merely stumbled and that the food had fallen on its own. He adds that it was impossible to deal with everyone. “There were beasts but there were good people too.” Asked what other categories of people in Latvia were especially likely to have been recruited, Mister W says that those at the Riga Institute for Civil Aviation Engineers were because “there studied not only Latvians, but there were many people from Russia … In it, the work of the organs went extremely well” – “practically every second person was recruited.” Mister W’s comments are a reminder of just how messy the period during the war was, how many people had no good choices concerning their recruitment by either side of the conflict, and how today regardless of what information is released there is always more that could be and that won’t be, something the Russian organs will certainly exploit to their benefit. Indeed, one of the reasons why interviews like Mister W’s may be taking place is to unsettle Latvia and Latvians by reminding those who thought they had managed to escape charges of collaboration that Moscow to this day retains materials that it can and will use against those who do not cooperate, now not with the Soviet organs but with the Russian ones.
A former Estonian security agent who was once awarded a medal for his service to the small Baltic nation has been detained on suspicion of cooperating with Russian intelligence, the director of Estonia’s Internal Security Service (KAPO) said on April 12.
Lithuanian ambassador Remigijus Motuzas recalled from Russia, he is exposed and threatened
Estonia has banned the Russian sailing ship Sedov from entering its territorial waters, because there are cadets from the Kerch State Marine …
The British-Dutch company Shell plans to withdraw from the Baltic liquefied natural gas (LNG) project following Gazprom’s decision to integrate it with a gas processing plant in Ust-Luga, announced Shell Russia Chairman Cederic Cremers in a statement. “Following Gazprom’s announcement on 29 March regarding the final development concept of Baltic LNG, we have decided to stop our involvement in this project. We have a number of other ongoing projects with Gazprom, including as part of the Strategic Alliance established between the two companies in 2015, which are not impacted by this decision,” Cremers noted. In 2015 Shell became Gazprom’s sole partner in Baltic LNG. The technical development of the project began in 2018. Initially, Shell assessed the plant’s capacity at 10 million tons of LNG per year, with a possible later expansion to 13 million tons. This March, Gazprom changed the project concept to include the full integration of Baltic LNG and a gas processing plant. Gazprom mentioned only one partner in the new version of the project: RusGazDobycha, which is partially owned by the National Gas Group. The jointly owned company RusKhimAlyans will be the project’s operator. No involvement on the part of Shell was mentioned. Baltic LNG will be a liquefied natural gas plant in the region of the Ust-Luga port in Russia’s Leningrad region. The target markets for the LNG it produces will be countries in the Atlantic region, Middle East, Southern Asia, and low-tonnage LNG markets in the Baltic and North Sea regions.
Royal Dutch Shell has decided to exit a Baltic liquefied natural gas (LNG) project led by Russian state gas major Gazprom on the Russian Baltic coast.
Poland demands return of debris of the plane, which crashed near Smolensk in 2010
Lessons From Ukraine Today, the term “hybrid warfare” is widely used to describe Russia’s approach to the war it has been waging in Ukraine since 2014. But this notion has largely been absent from Russian military literature. Some Russian strategists only adopted the term after its use by numerous Western journalists and experts. In Revising…
Lessons From Ukraine Today, the term “hybrid warfare” is widely used to describe Russia’s approach to the war it has been waging in Ukraine since 2014. But this notion has largely been absent from Russian military literature. Some Russian strategists only adopted the term after its use by numerous Western journalists and experts. In Revising the Theory of Hybrid War, CEPA’s Andrássy Fellow Krisztián Jójárt assess the lessons learned by Moscow in eastern Ukraine and the implications for the West. How has the Kremlin’s military thinking evolved with the introduction of “hybrid warfare” into the equation? And what are the implications for the West when considering potential hybrid threats in the future?
Charlie Rowley says an apology “would be great” but he cannot see the Russian president “taking the blame”.
LONDON (Sputnik) – The United Kingdom and its allies strive to preserve their chemical laboratories to stage further provocations, a spokesperson of the Russian Embassy in London said on Thursday.
Russia does not want to fulfil the Minsk agreements, which can return peace to Ukraine. Censor.NET reports citing Ukrinform. “We believe firmly that the Minks agreements need to be implemented fully. So far, Russia has not been willing to do that, but we remain prepared to engage, to do whatever we can to facilitate negotiations, the introduction of peacekeepers that it helpful so that the people of eastern Ukraine can get their lives back once again,” Volker said. He emphasized that the United States seeks “a genuine negotiation that restores the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine, as called for in the Minsk agreements.” The security threats faced by Ukraine over the last five years are unprecedented for modern European countries, US Special Representative for Ukraine Negotiations Kurt Volker has said. He said this in a video address to the participants of the 12th Kyiv Security Forum on Thursday, April 11. “We firmly believe that the Minsk agreements should be fully implemented. Until now, Russia has not expressed a desire to do this. But we are ready to participate further, ready to facilitate negotiations and the introduction of peacekeepers to help residents of eastern Ukraine return to a peaceful life,” Volker said. He noted that the United States is striving for “sincere negotiations that will restore the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine.” “It is also necessary to implement political steps within the framework of the Minsk agreements. Ukraine has done a lot in this direction. And if we can create the necessary security conditions, we will be able to move on,” the diplomat said. “The United States firmly supports the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine,” he concluded. Source:https://censor.net.ua/en/n3121842
Russia absolutely does not want to comply with the Minsk agreements that can bring peace to Ukraine, U.S. Special Representative for Ukraine Negotiations Kurt Volker has said. — Ukrinform.
Russia’s Federation Council on Wednesday approved a statement saying that violations of the rules of navigation by Ukrainian ships in the Kerch Strait are fraught with a military conflict with Russia in which NATO may be involved. Russia is now heavily militarizing Crimea and the Black Sea. Some 28,000 Russian soldiers are stationed on the peninsula. Russia’s Federation Council on Wednesday approved a statement saying that violations of the rules of navigation by Ukrainian ships in the Kerch Strait are fraught with a military conflict with Russia in which NATO may be involved. The Federation Council’s statement about NATO’s destructive policies being implemented since the alliance’s creation in 1949 was timed for the organization’s 70th anniversary, according to Defence Blog. “The passing of Ukrainian ships through the Kerch Strait is not a question of the balance of force or of NATO’s presence in the Black Sea region. It is exclusively a problem of Ukraine’s compliance with the established procedures that are well-known to it and had been successfully used by it up to November 2018. Ukraine’s attempts to bypass these procedures are fraught with the risk of a military conflict between Ukraine and Russia in which NATO may be involved,” the Federation Council said.The senators pointed out that after stepping up activity in the previously calm Baltic Region NATO was now building up military presence in the Black Sea region. “NATO’s support for Georgia during the tragic events in August 2008 and now for Ukraine, in particular, on November 25, 2018 when Ukrainian naval ships illegally crossed the state border of Russia in the Kerch Strait area incites the leaders of these two countries, certain about their impunity, to carry out more adventures,” the statement runs. According to Deutsche Welle, Russia is now heavily militarizing Crimea and the Black Sea. Some 28,000 Russian soldiers are stationed on the peninsula. Russia has practically doubled its military budget over the past 10 years. The tensions between Russia and Ukraine are not part of a frozen conflict: they can flare up with very little warning. There have been growing tensions between the two sides over navigation in the Kerch Strait area andseized Ukrainian naval vessels. Ukraine has accused Russia of trying to occupy the Sea of Azov and damage Ukraine’s economy by hindering access its ports.
In a statement released by the Federation Council, Moscow threatened to take military action against Kyiv for violating procedures for the passage of Ukrainian Navy ships through the Kerch Strait, reports TASS. Russia believes that the passage of ships through the Kerch Strait is not a question of NATO’s presence in the Black Sea, but of Ukraine’s fulfillment of its obligations “which are well established and have been successfully implemented since November 2018,” that is, before the Russian capture of Ukrainian sailors. “Ukraine’s attempts to bypass these procedures carry the risk of a military conflict between Ukraine and the Russian Federation in which NATO may also be involved,” the Federation Council’s statement reads. The Federation Council claimed that NATO’s support to Ukraine, and in 2008 its support to Georgia, “encouraged the administrations of these two countries, which are sure of their impunity, to seek new adventures”. However, Russian senators do not exclude the possibility that negotiations between the Kremlin and the North Atlantic Alliance could improve a worsening situation. “One can only regret that the previously existing formats and channels of communication were curtailed unilaterally by NATO. Cooperation in a number of security areas that would safeguard the interests of all Euro-Atlantic states was completely discontinued,” the Federation Council complained. On 25 November last year, Russia attacked and captured the Ukrainian military boats Berdyansk and Nikopol and the tugboat Yany Kapu in neutral waters. All 24 Ukrainians on board were accused of violating the Russian state border, arrested, and transferred from Kerch to Moscow. Ukraine considered this an act of military aggression, and the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe recognized the captured sailors as prisoners of war. US President Donald Trump canceled his planned meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin because of the Kerch Strait incident. US Special Representative for Ukraine Kurt Volker similarly called off his scheduled negotiation session with Russian Presidential Aide Vladislav Surkov. Oleksandr Turchynov, Secretary of Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council, said in December that Ukraine had invited its international partners to take part in a passage of naval ships from the Black Sea into the Sea of Azov through the Kerch Strait. The Russian media warned that this could “aggravate the situation”.
Special Representative of the U.S. State Department for Ukraine Negotiations Kurt Volker states that the United States wishes Ukraine success in holding the second round of presidential elections in Ukraine, but does not support any of the candidates. The envoy congratulated Ukrainians on the successful holding of the first round of elections.
NATO should strengthen its presence in the Black Sea and send its submarines there. — Ukrinform.
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has started his visit to Germany. — Ukrinform.
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko and leader of the Christian Democratic Union of Germany Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer have discussed the situation in Ukrainian territories temporarily occupied by Russia, the press service of the head of state has reported. — Ukrinform.
President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko, during his working visit to Germany, met with chairman of the Christian Democratic Union of Germany Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, and discussed issues on the bilateral agenda. “The dynamic development of the political dialogue between Ukraine and Germany was noted. Kramp-Karrenbauer praised the transparency of the first round of presidential elections in Ukraine and their compliance with high democratic standards. The two discussed issues on the bilateral agenda, including the situation in the Russia-occupied Donbas and Crimea,” the presidential press service said on Friday. The information indicates that special attention during the meeting was paid to the issue of the immediate and unconditional release of prisoners of war-Ukrainian sailors and political prisoners illegally detained by Russia.
“I emphasize that the Ukrainian army has reached a new level. Cooperation with NATO Allies shows that Ukrainian servicepersons train quickly and are ready to defend the entire European continent against possible aggression of the Kremlin,” President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko said at a joint briefing with German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Friday, an Ukrinform correspondent reports. Poroshenko also thanked Merkel for the assistance in the rehabilitation of Ukrainian military personnel — the members of the Joint Forces. “I wish to express my gratitude to the Chancellor for the possibility of rehabilitating Ukrainian military personnel in hospitals in Germany, the clinics of the German Bundeswehr. They appreciate this support very much. It is a stance of a real friend and partner,” the Head of State said. This week, a group of Ukrainian military personnel is participating in an annual workshop, which is “another proof of deepening Ukraine-Germany defense cooperation,” Poroshenko noted.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel says she finds important her dialogue with Ukraine President Petro Poroshenko. The Chancellor explained why she chose to receive only one Ukrainian presidential candidate, the incumbent head of state, rather than also meet Volodymyr Zelensky.
12.04.19 16:04 – Poroshenko meets Merkel in Germany: We developed truly strategic partnership between Kyiv and Berlin. PHOTO President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko met in Berlin with German Chancellor Angela Merkel to discuss a number of pressing issues, including the Ukrainian elections and the war in the Donbas. View news.
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko and German Chancellor Angela Merkel have supported the Easter ceasefire in Donbas from April 18. — Ukrinform.
President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko says that sanctions against the Russian Federation are effective and can be strengthened in case Russia does not fulfill its obligations. — Ukrinform.
President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko discussed with representatives of the Alliance 90/The Greens the security situation in Donbas. — Ukrinform.
The deployment of a UN peacekeeping mission in Donbas is the best solution so far. — Ukrinform.
Germany hopes that the second round of the presidential election in Ukraine will be fair and transparent, German Chancellor Angela Merkel has said, adding Berlin will continue supporting Kyiv regardless of who becomes the next president.
In an on-air interview with Novoye Vremya (New Time) radio station, President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko said that, if reelected, he plans to win back Crimea and the Donbas using the Minsk agreements. “Part of fulfilling the Minsk agreements is the formation of its security components. The security component will be broached by introducing the blue helmets issue to the UN Security Council… An absolutely traditional peacekeeping mission that must fulfill several tasks to create a secure environment – removing all foreign troops from Ukraine, disarming illegal armed formations and pushing heavy weapons and equipment out of Ukraine’s territory”, he said. He believes the next step should be restoring the activities of Ukrainian political forces on territories currently outside of Kyiv’s control as well as taking control of the uncontrolled segment of the Ukrainian-Russian border. Poroshenko also spoke about seeking a UN General Assembly resolution to create a Ukrainian platform for the de-occupation of Crimea. In addition, the incumbent president announced a summit meeting in the “Normandy format” after his re-election. The second round of presidential elections in Ukraine will take place on April 21.
Russian lawyer and human rights activist Nikolay Polozov has said Moscow’s Lefortovo district court on April 17 will consider a motion from Russian investigators to extend the arrest of 24 Ukrainian sailors captured in the Kerch Strait. A motion for the extension of the arrest is expected on Monday, April 15.
The United Kingdom supports Ukraine’s course for NATO membership. — Ukrinform.
Konstantin Mashovets on the coastal defense in the occupied Crimea and gives a detailed analysis of land component of the Russian forces. The key defense element of the Russian forces in Crimea is the 22nd Army Corps – a unit of the Coastal Troops of the Russian Navy. The corps and its headquarters are located and managed in the city of Simferopol. The corps includes: – 126th Separate Gorlovskaya Red Banner, Order of Suvorov Coast Guard Brigade (Perevalnoye) – 127th Separate Reconnaissance Brigade (Sevastopol) – 8th Separate Coastal Artillery Regiment (Simferopol) – 1096th Separate anti-aircraft missile regiment (Sevastopol) The task of the corps is NOT ONLY to solve the whole range of coastal defense tasks, but also, which is quite alarming, to conduct, with the support of the navy, AMPHIBIOUS ASSAULT LANDINGS. This is a strange task for the troops of the COASTAL DEFENSE, which is supposed to solve completely different tasks. The main component of the 22nd AC, its 126th Separate Coast Guard Brigade, to put it mildly, is not an ordinary military unit of this kind of troops.
Hubert Fayard, head of an organization that purports to be the Official Embassy of the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) in France, has been arrested on suspicion of pimping, according to reports in the Russian media and by the French news outlet Le Monde. Fayard was arrested in Marseille on 2 April, charged on 4 April, and is now being held in custody in Aix-Luynes. No official details about Fayard’s illicit activity have been released, although one source in legal system mentioned “girls from the East who work for him”. In 2007, Fayard founded a dating agency called “Love of Russia”, which was registered at the same address as the DPR “embassy”. The Russian news outlet RIA Novosti also published an article about Fayard’s arrest, with a different theory. Fayard was supposedly in a “difficult financial situation”. He met with a certain Ukrainian lady, who offered to lend him money. The following day, police arrived at his house, confiscated the money and arrested him. France is the fifth European country where the Russia-controlled DPR militants have tried to open “embassies”. They tried previously in Greece, Finland and Italy, and also in the Czech city of Ostrava, where a district court ordered that the “embassy” be closed. France is part of the Normandy Format and is the guarantor of the signing of the Minsk Agreements. The French Foreign Ministry has already declared that it does not recognize the so-called Official Embassy of the DPR and that its activity is illegal. There have been several court cases to have the organization shut down, although none have been successful yet.
Ukraine says one of its soldiers has been killed and eight others wounded in clashes with Russia-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine.
April 11, the Russian occupying forces attacked JFO positions 20 times, four times using Minsk-proscribed weapons. Censor.NET reports referring to the JFO press center Facebook page. Within the action area of Skhid semistrategic group the terrorists committed attacks with: – 120mm mortars, grenade launchers of various systems and large-caliber machine guns near the settlement of Lebedynske; – 82mm mortars, anti-tank missile systems, armaments of infantry combat vehicles, automatic heavy-duty grenade launchers, large-caliber machine guns and small arms in Pavlopil; – anti-tank missile systems, grenade launchers of various systems, large-caliber machine guns and small arms near the village of Novotroitske; – anti-tank missile systems, grenade launchers of various systems and large-caliber machine guns near the settlement of Novosiolovka; – anti-tank grenade launchers and small arms near the village of Hnutovo; – automatic stun grenade launchers and small arms in the area of the settlement of Vodiane; – grenade launchers of various systems and small arms in the area of Avdiivka suburb. Within the action area of Pivnich semistrategic group the terrorists committed attacks with 82 mm mortars near Katerynivka settlement. “As a result of shelling, one Ukrainian soldier was killed and another eight got wounded,” the report reads. The Joint Forces used weapons on call to retaliate the enemy’s provocations, leaving nine terrorists destroyed and eight – wounded. Source: https://censor.net.ua/en/n3121857
Russia’s hybrid military forces on April 11 mounted 20 attacks on Ukrainian army positions in Donbas, with one Ukrainian soldier reported as killed in action and another eight as wounded in action. Nine invaders were killed and another eight were wounded on Thursday, intelligence reports say.
Commander of a squad of an air assault platoon, private first class of the 79th air assault brigade Roman Chibineev was killed during a combat mission in Donbas, eastern Ukraine, on April 11. He was going to turn 30 this summer.
Eight servicemen wounded in Donbas. Pro-Russian militants opened fire on the Ukrainian army 11 times. Political – LB.ua news portal. Latest from Ukraine and the world today
Officer of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Anatoliy “Shtirlitz” Shtefan has shared a video of a strike on the position of Russian occupation forces in Donbas, eastern Ukraine. An enemy infantry fighting vehicle was destroyed and two enemy troops were killed as a result of the operation.
While three Ukrainian soldiers were injured in action on Thursday, April 11, Joint Forces not only continued to repulse enemy attacks, but also gained ground in the warzone. Joint Forces succeeded in securing new, advantageous, strongholds.
Ukrainian MP and coordinator of the Information Resistance OSINT Group Dmytro Tymchuk has said the Russian Federation has sent up to 10 transportation platforms with T-72 tanks and four Grad multiple launch rocket systems (MLRS) to occupied Donbas, eastern Ukraine. About 2,300 tonnes of fuel and lubricants were reportedly delivered from Russia.
On March 28, Ukraine did away with expiration dates for electronic passes that allow civilians to travel between government-controlled territory and areas controlled by Russia-backed armed groups in the country’s east. This move marks a small but important step toward easing the lives of the estimated one million people who journey across the front lines dividing the
Pensions for servicepersons and law enforcers will grow twofold due to the gradual increase in pension payments in Ukraine. — Ukrinform.
The military spending envisaged in the 2019 state budget has been increased by 8% compared with the previous year. — Ukrinform.
Russia’s Investigation Committee put ex-Minister of Defence of Ukraine Anatoliy Hrytsenko on a wanted list, as TASS reported. Grytsenko is accused of public calls for terrorist activity in Russia. The Investigation Committee asks Moscow Basmanny District Court to decide on arrest in absentia for Hrytsenko. “Moscow Basmanny District Court received a motion from the investigation bodies concerning the restrictive measure in absentia in a form of detention for Hrytsenko. He is on an international wanted list,” the press secretary of the court Yunona Tsareva stated. Related: Ukraine’s Security Service puts journalist Skachko on wanted list According to the Investigation Committee, Hrytsenko issued a public call for terrorist activity in Russia on air of 1+1 TV channel by exploding rail trains. He also called for terrorist activity in Moscow and Tahanroh on air of 112 Ukraine TV channel on July 2, 2017. Anatoliy Hrytsenko held the post of Ukraine’s Defence Minister in 2005-2007. He is the leader of Civil Position political party. He ran for the presidency three times.
Ukraine’s priority is the further development of missile defense, Secretary of Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council Oleksandr Turchynov has said. Ukraine’s priority is the further development of missile defense, Secretary of Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council Oleksandr Turchynov has said. “Our most important priority is the further development of our country’s missile shield, the creation of new missile systems,” Turchynov said at the twelfth Kyiv Security Forum on Thursday, organized by Arseniy Yatsenyuk’s “Open Ukraine” Foundation. Turchynov said Ukraine successfully tested new missile systems the week before. “[We tested] a cruise missile system that can provide reliable protection of the Ukrainian coast of the Black Sea and Sea of Azov, which can destroy naval targets not only during their offensive actions when they threaten our country,” he said. “In the event of a threat to the country, we will be able to destroy enemy forces in ports where they are based. This is quite a serious step in strengthening the security and defense of our country,” he said. Turchynov said the withdrawal of Russia from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty brings the arms race to a new level. “First of all, medium- and short-range missiles threaten our country. This is a challenge for us, and, of course, our task is to realistically assess these threats and to counter them,” he said.
Experts from NATO and Ukraine took stock of progress made on several projects and agreed on new areas of cooperation, such as the reintegration of female military personnel into civilian life. This was the subject of discussion at the 16th edition of the NATO-Ukraine Joint Working Group on Scientific and Environmental Cooperation, held at NATO Headquarters on 28 March 2019.
President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko has congratulated scientists and employees of Ukraine’s space industry on their professional holiday and the International Day of Human Space Flight, the president’s press service reported. — Ukrinform.
Ukraine actively cooperates with 30 countries in the field of space technology and occupies its rightful place in the world, having a powerful aerospace engineering complex. — Ukrinform.
Cosmonautics Day celebreated in Ukraine and worldwide
Mariupol Marine Corps of the State Border Guard Service has announced a tender for the up-to-date repair of the 1400M marine protection boat (Grif-M code) onboard number BG118. Boat BG118 “Arabat”, head. No. 911, built by the Feodosiya shipyard “Sea” in 1994. In October, 2018, the corps repair was carried out by the company “Magistral-South”, in particular, the part of the outer sheathing was replaced, the damaged body was treated and welded, as well as deck and superstructure repairs. The cost of works amounted to 725 thousand UAH. This time, it is planned to carry out dock work, repair of the outer sheathing, decks and superstructures in accordance with defect, as well as repair of electrical components. Expected cost of works is 2.5 million UAH. The auction is scheduled for April 22. It should be reminded that last year the SBGS commissioned a project to upgrade the 1400M project boat, the “Grif-MU” craft, from the Shipbuilding Research and Design Center. Also this year, Morskoy guard has already conducted or announced tenders for the repair of the guard ship “Grigory Kuropyatnikov” (pr.1241.2), three ships of the project 205P “Tarantul”, three artillery boats project 1204 “Bumblebee” , six boats “Kalkan” , etc. .
Deputy Director of the Ukrainian Defense Ministry’s finance department Serhiy Vynnyk says the ministry will allocate UAH 11.5 billion, or US$428.6 million, in 2019 for the purchase and modernization of military equipment. In addition, the funds are expected to be channeled into more than 20 R&D projects.
Posted by: Editorial April 11, 2019 Important, News 0 Comments This year, for the procurement and modernization of armaments and military equipment for the Armed Forces of Ukraine, a resource of 11.5 billion UAH was allocated. This was announced during a briefing by the Deputy Director of the Department of Finance of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine Sergey Vinnik For the needs of the Armed Forces of Ukraine it is planned to put more than 800 units of automobile equipment, 600 units of communication technology, more than 270 units of rocket-artillery armament, more than 200 units of armored vehicles and equipment, 3000 units of small arms, as well as other armaments and military equipment. In the interests of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, it is planned to conduct twenty research and development works. In the current year under the allocated resource in the amount of 4 billion hryvnias it is planned to repair more than 5 thousand units of armament and military equipment.
Ivan Beletsky, Russian opposition politician and one of the organizers of the Russian marches, as well as the Artpodgotovka civic movement, …
Ukrainian President Pedro Poroshenko, who has been repeatedly accused of turning a blind eye to corruption, has ordered the creation of a special anticorruption court.
Ukraine continues to fight for stopping the construction of a new line of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, President Petro Poroshenko has said. — Ukrinform.
Construction of Russia’s Nord Stream 2 pipeline to Germany is bound to face further long delays, forcing Moscow to come to an agreement with Ukraine on future gas transits, a senior EU official said on Thursday.
The Government of Ukraine has a plan B in case the Russian Federation blocks the operation of the Ukrainian gas transportation system and refuses to sign a new transit agreement. — Ukrinform.
The Ministry of Health of Ukraine and the United States Department of Health prepare a memorandum on cooperation in the field of treatment and prevention of serious diseases for signing. — Ukrinform.
LONDON – Ukrainian culture boosted after the EuroMaidan Revolution, the popular uprising that drove President Viktor Yanukovych from power in 2014, including the creating of a Ukrainian Cultural Foundation in Kyiv. Its expert together with the one from British Council Ukraine came to London to discuss how culture helps Ukrainians to cope with the country’s instability, at an event in London’s Chatham House on April.10. Ukrainian Cultural Foundation established by the Ministry of Culture in 2017 and attracted a lot of attention because of the generousness of the funding the organization received from the government and secondly because of the President’s wife Maryna Poroshenko willing to chair the supervisory board. The organization’s budget in 2018 totaled $7.7 million and dramatically increased to $26.5 million in 2019. First Lady Maryna Poroshenko got the position at the largest grant-making state-owned organization, dedicated to supporting cultural and art projects. However, despite society’s fear that she would make the organization biased and put it under the president’s patronage, that did not happen, said Oleksandra Yakubenko, international cooperation department’s head at the Ukrainian Cultural Fund. “Even though the head of our supervisory board is Maryna Poroshenko, all the decisions are made by our executive director [Yuliia Fediv]. There is still a list of questions which the supervisory board decides on, such as financing projects with the budgets exceeding the amount of 150 minimum salaries,” explained Yakubenko. “Maryna Poroshenko chairs the board but every decision is made by a quorum,” she said.
Students of the Ukrainian Leadership Academy staged a street performance in Paris, France, on April 11 in support of Ukrainian film director Oleh Sentsov, who has illegally been convicted and imprisoned in Russia. The event was organized by the Ukrainian Leadership Academy, supported by the Save Oleg Sentsov campaign and the Ukrainian Diaspora.
The growing presence of far-right groups in Ukraine leaves the west in a quandary. The ultranationalists have played a key role in fighting Russia-backed separatist rebels and are now challenging government corruption. But they are pushing for changes that go against democratic ideals
Ultra-right activists in Ukraine have attempted to derail a lesbian conference in Kiev, engaging in scuffles with security guards.
Come for the history, stay for the trendy hotels and insanely cool and unique experiences – like getting behind the wheel of a tank.
Famous American travel blogger and journalist from Forbes Breanna Wilson has visited the Ukrainian city of Kyiv and called it “Eastern Europe’s diamond.” According to Wilson, one of Kyiv’s districts, Podil, is similar to New York’s Brooklyn with its composure and excellent places for recreation.
Ukrainian presidential candidates Volodymyr Zelensky and Petro Poroshenko have not asked Moscow for arranging a meeting with President Vladimir Putin, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Friday.
French President Emmanuel Macron is meeting with Ukraine’s presidential candidate Volodymyr Zelensky, the France 24 TV news channel has reported.
Ukrainian presidential candidate Volodymyr Zelensky has arrived at the Elysee Palace where he will meet with French President Emmanuel Macron, according to an Ukrinform correspondent. — Ukrinform.
French President Emmanuel Macron has received Ukrainian presidential candidate Volodymyr Zelensky at the Elysee Palace, according to RFI. — Ukrinform.
French President Emmanuel Macron on Friday held a meeting with Ukrainian presidential election hopeful Volodymyr Zelensky. The French leader is yet to meet another presidential candidate from Ukraine, the incumbent head of state Petro Poroshenko.
12.04.19 17:40 – Zelenskyi arrives at Elysee Palace to meet Macron. VIDEO&PHOTOS Ukrainian presidential candidate Volodymyr Zelenskyi has arrived at the Elysee Palace where he will meet with French President Emmanuel Macron. View news.
French President Emmanuel Macron met with Volodymyr Zelenskiy, the Ukrainian comedic actor and presidential candidate, on April 12 at the Elysee palace in Paris. The second round of Ukraine’s presidential election is April 21. Zelenskiy won the first round by a wide margin over President Petro Poroshenko, but he did not receive enough support to avoid a runoff.
12.04.19 12:34 – Zelensky’s guard strengthened before elections runoff, – Interior Minister Avakov The National Police provided the candidate’s security yet in the first round; the incumbent President Petro Poroshenko has his own bodyguards from the State Guard Service. View news.
The two remaining candidates in Ukraine’s presidential race will meet French President Emmanuel Macron on Friday as Paris seeks to prepare for what happens after the run-off on April 21, a French presidential source said on Wednesday.
Ukraine’s president and his electoral challenger for the office are in Western Europe to meet with key leaders ahead of the country’s April 21 runoff vote
Volodymyr Zelenskiy, a 41-year-old comedian with no prior political experience, is the frontrunner to become Ukraine’s next president.
Ukrainian comedian Volodymyr Zelensky, a political novice and favourite to win Kiev’s presidential vote, will head to Paris Friday to meet French …
Ukrainian comedian and presidential candidate Volodymyr Zelenskiy is heading to Paris to meet the French president. He is predicted to win the presidential election run-off, despite his only political experience of playing the president in a TV show.
Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s team is not going to negotiate with the self-proclaimed Luhansk and Donetsk people’s republics if he is elected president of Ukraine, a representative of Zelenskyy’s HQ, Dmytro Razumkov, has said in an interview with BBC Ukrainian. “We are certainly not holding such negotiations. Negotiations should be held or pressure should be put on those who make decisions. The so-called DPR and LPR administrations are not subjects of the negotiating process, but mere objects. All the key decisions are taken in the Russian Federation. These are talking heads who come to Minsk, make public some theses but have no say in decision-making. Therefore negotiations with them are ineffective, to put it mildly,” Razumkov said. He said that the DPR and LPR are terrorist organizations and “there is relevant international practice”. He also cast doubt on the effectiveness of Viktor Medvedchuk’s involvement in the Minsk talks. He added that Zelenskyy’s team is not in talks on any cooperation with Medvedchuk.
The spokesperson for the Ukrainian presidential candidate, Volodymyr Zelensky, Dmitry Razumkov, in an interview with the BBC, announced that …
In a popular TV series, a fictional Ukrainian president gets so drunk at a dinner with the head of the International Monetary Fund that he throws her into a swimming pool.
12.04.19 15:29 – “He is my lawyer”, – Kolomoyskyi about Zelenskyi’s team member Bohdan Kolomoyskyi has confirmed that Andrei Bogdan, who provides legal support for the campaign of presidential candidate Volodymyr Zelenskyi, is his personal lawyer. View news.
Deputy Head of the Department of International Legal Cooperation of the Prosecutor General’s Office of Ukraine Kostiantyn Kulyk refutes meetings with Ihor Kolomoisky or his entourage in Israel and Austria, about which President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko speaks. “As for Israel. I went to the doctor who was in the intensive care unit of my child and he continued treatment there. The second trip was to Vienna, it was Firtash’s interrogation as part of an international assignment,” he said on “1+1” TV channel on Thursday evening, responding to Poroshenko’s statement. When asked whether Kolomoisky ordered him to perform any actions, Kulyk replied in the negative. “I didn’t meet with any of them,” the prosecutor stated.
Deputy chief of the Ukrainian Prosecutor General’s Office (PGO) Department of International Legal Cooperation, Head of the Criminal Procedural Management Department Kostiantyn Kulyk has denied Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko’s allegations that the prosecutor met with Ukrainian businessman Ihor Kolomoisky and his team in Israel and Austria. Poroshenko claimed Kulyk “had received an order” from oligarch Ihor Kolomoisky to accuse the incumbent president of meddling in a probe into fugitive oligarch Serhiy Kurchenko’s case.
KYIV. April 11 (Interfax-Ukraine) – Among supporters of presidential candidate Volodymyr Zelensky, 68% are by their choice expressing, first and foremost, their protest against the existing situation in the country, while 26% are voting for him as a person. According to poll results of the Sociological Group Rating published at the Kyiv-based Interfax-Ukraine news agency on Thursday, a total of 66% of Ukrainians think this is the main motivation to vote for Zelensky, while 20% think people are voting for Zelensky because of his personal qualities. Among the voters of the current president, Petro Poroshenko, almost 40% vote not so much for him as against Russian President Vladimir Putin, while 42% are voting for Poroshenko the candidate. Some 31% of all respondents believe that they are voting for Poroshenko as an individual, while 26% believe that voting for him is, first of all, a vote “against Putin.” Some 57% of voters who are ready to support Zelensky in the second round are voting for him as a candidate, while 41% of those polled said they are voting for Poroshenko the candidate. Some 75% of voters who are ready to support Poroshenko in the second round are more likely to vote for him as a candidate, while 22% are more likely to vote against Zelensky. Sociological Group Rating conducted the survey on April 5-10, 2019, among Ukrainians 18 years and older. The sample is representative by age, gender, region, and type of settlement. Some 3,000 people took part in a personal formalized interview (face-to-face). The margin of error of the poll does not exceed 1.8%.
Franak Viačorka on Twitter: “Lukashenka asks Ukrainians TO NOT VOTE for Zelensky. Since Lukashenka is quite popular in Ukraine, his statement can help @poroshenko to get votes of “strong hand” supporters https://t.co/mZ112i7dQ2… https://t.co/7BvSF3oahX”
President Petro Poroshenko says that Ukraine has failed to completely avoid Russia’s meddling in the elections, but some attempts have been prevented. — Ukrinform.
Court lifts entry ban on Russian spindoctor. He was expelled and barred from Ukraine in 2017. Political – LB.ua news portal. Latest from Ukraine and the world today
The future of Ukraine is as a country governed by parliamentary-presidential rule, where parliament with the government will be responsible for everything that happens in the country, second president of independent Ukraine Leonid Kuchma has said.
The head of the political council of the Opposition Platform-For Life party, Viktor Medvedchuk, said that he was involved in Donbas negotiations merely at the request of Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko, was not an appointed negotiator and so cannot be removed from talks.
Both candidates in Ukraine’s presidential election have been reluctant to answer RFE/RL’s questions. But we did try…
The comic and front-runner phoned in to the Right To Power TV program last night to continue his ongoing argument with the incumbent president over where and when a debate would take place. It didn’t end well. KYIV — After dramatic video challenges and livestreamed drug tests, Petro Poroshenko and Volodymyr Zelenskiy took their electoral sideshow to prime-time TV on April 11 with a linkup that ended with the challenger hanging up abruptly on the incumbent president. It followed news that Poroshenko, head of state since a snap election followed a Russian invasion and the outbreak of military conflict in eastern Ukraine in early 2014, badly trails the comedian-turned-candidate Zelenskiy in national polling ahead of their presidential runoff on April 21. A weeklong dispute over the timing and location of a possible debate resumed shortly after Poroshenko stepped onto the stage of the Right To Power TV program and Zelenskiy was patched through by telephone. Poroshenko invited Zelenskiy down to the 1+1 studio for a debate on the spot, only to be told that the 41-year-old political novice was in France ahead of a scheduled April 12 meeting with President Emmanuel Macron — with whom Poroshenko is also scheduled to meet after his visit earlier in the day to Germany to see Chancellor Angela Merkel. The two men returned to a spirited if mostly petty back-and-forth that seemed to highlight the lack of high-politics discussions coming from the candidates since they beat out 37 other contenders in the first round on March 31. Here’s how the TV kerfuffle went down in the broadcast by the same 1+1 channel that airs many of Zelenskiy’s comedy shows and is owned by self-exiled oligarch Ihor Kolomoyskiy, who publicly reviles Poroshenko. “Petro Oleksiyovych is perfectly aware that I am visiting Paris, France, considering that the fine cars of the Ukrainian Security Service escorted me to the airport,” Zelenskiy tells the show’s host, using the president’s patronymic. Standing on center stage, Poroshenko quips back that he has no interest in Zelenskiy’s movements before the two begin speaking over one another. Fragments can be heard relating to their stadium debate challenge and recent name-calling and attack ads before Poroshenko asks, “Are you finished?” Zelenskiy snaps back that “I’ll finish in five years, and you’ll finish on April 22,” the day after the runoff, although the inauguration date for the next five-year presidential term is set for June 3. After the 53-year-old Poroshenko urges his 41-year-old rival one more time to agree to an April 14 debate and Zelenskiy counters with April 19, Zelenskiy adds, “That’s all, goodbye,” and ends the call. (View the full exchange on the Right to Power program at 23:17) The exchange didn’t sit well with some Ukrainians who voiced their frustration with both candidates on social media. They included third-place presidential finisher and ex-Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko, who responded with a video of her own. In the argument between the candidates, she said, “I saw the destruction of the status of the president, I saw the humiliation of the Ukrainian state.” “I think, like me, millions of Ukrainians did not want to see this,” she added. Adding to the drama, 1+1 director Oleksandr Tkachenko on April 12 accused Poroshenko of having turned up uninvited to the show, where he “shamelessly burst onto the air…using his status as head of state.” Tkachenko added that the channel was considering a defamation lawsuit against the president, who threatened to sue 1+1 last month for “lies” and “defamation.”
ТСН Streamed live 20 hours ago Як завжди по четвергах – ПРАВО НА ВЛАДУ на 1+1. Сьогодні ми говоримо про чорний бік виборів – брудні технології, мову ворожнечі, розкол суспільства. Згадаємо найгучніші корупційні скандали, які заглушили вибори, і про кадрові пертурбації влади. Наші гості: Костянтин Кулик, Максим Степанов, Єгор Соболєв, Святослав Юраш, Сергій Кальченко, Олексій Антипович, Дмитро Разумков, Віктор Таран.
Emotional behavior of Ukraine’s presidential candidate Volodymyr Zelensky during the conversation with his opponent, current President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko on air of 1+1 TV channel was related to the fact that the showman undertakes “a lot of dirt” from Poroshenko, as Spokesperson of Zelensky’s headquarters Dmytro Razumkov said, UNIAN reported. As he stated, Zelensky is a very emotional person. Related: New video with Zelensky appears on Web “But there is another issue. If our viewers faced the amount of dirt which his family, his friends, his supporters, his voters face daily, they would be even more emotional and use harsh words,” Razumkov stated. 1+1 studio CEO Oleksandr Tkachenko claimed readiness to sue President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko for “breaking into the air of the private company” and for “previous accusations towards the TV channel”. As it was reported earlier, on April 11 the presidential candidates Petro Poroshenko and Volodymyr Zelensky had their first mutual conversation on air.
Presidential candidate, comedian Volodymyr Zelenskyy has refused to take part in a public election debate with incumbent President Petro Poroshenko at the Olympic Stadium on 14 April, the comic’s HQ has informed his competitor’s HQ, according to MP Artur Herasymov. Herasymov said that Poroshenko would be at the stadium for a debate starting at 14.14 on 14 April. “Unfortunately, today we have learnt from Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s team that he is either not ready or not willing to take part in a debate,” he added. Earlier today, Zelenskyy’s HQ said that he was prepared to hold a video debate with Poroshenko: the president will speak from the National Public TV studio while Zelenskyy will be at the stadium. The idea of a debate at the stadium initially belonged to Zelenskyy. After the showman posted a video clip challenging Poroshenko to a debate at the stadium, the president accepted it. However, Zelenskyy has started to refuse from participation in any debate at all.
President Petro Poroshenko and showman Volodymyr Zelenskyy, who will meet in the runoff of the presidential election on 21 April, have for the first time spoken to each other on the air by phone. In particular, they discussed a future debate. Poroshenko came to the studio of One Plus One TV owned by media tycoon Ihor Kolomoyskyy, who is believed to be supportive of Zelenskyy, on the evening of 11 April. Poroshenko offered Zelenskyy to come to the studio as well, after which Zelenskyy called in by phone and said he was in France. “Petro Oleksiyovych knows perfectly well that I am now in Paris, in France, because his beautiful cars of the Security Service of Ukraine accompanied me there, to the airport. I have a meeting at 3 p.m. with the president of France tomorrow. Therefore, Mr. Poroshenko knows that I am not in Kyiv and it is very strange that respected presidential candidate Petro Oleksiyovych invites me to the One Plus One studio,” Zelenskyy said. He also noted that he had invited Poroshenko to the debate at the Olympic Stadium on 19 April. “He said ‘let it be the stadium’ and accepted these conditions. I asked him to call me Volodymyr Oleksandrovych or Volodymyr, not ‘yob’, not ‘drug addict’, etc. But let’s say it still continues a little, but that’s okay because we are simple people, we can accept it. Therefore, I invite you to the debate at the Olympic Stadium on 19 April with great joy,” Zelenskyy emphasized. Poroshenko, in turn, said that he was not interested in Zelenskyy’s movements. After that, the opponents began to talk simultaneously and interrupt each other: Zelenskyy: Petro Oleksiyovych, once again, there will be a debate at the Olympic Stadium on the 19th. If you want it to be held now, it will be now, but I invite you [to the stadium] on the 19th. Poroshenko: Have you finished? Zelenskyy: I will finish in five years, and you will finish on 22 April. Poroshenko: Have you finished? Zelenskyy: Do you want me to say it again? Do you need me to repeat? Poroshenko: Are you done or not? Zelenskyy: Should I tell you for the third time now? Poroshenko: Are we having problems with signal? Volodymyr Oleksandrovych, I have listened to your statement and now I will speak, have you heard me? Zelenskyy: I have a pleasure to invite you to the Olympic Stadium on 19 April. I have no problems with signal. Poroshenko: Signal is the only excuse. Are you finished, ready to listen to me? Zelenskyy: With pleasure. Poroshenko: Thank God, the connection is restored. Volodymyr Oleksandrovych, I am not interested in your movements, this is your private or state business. Zelenskyy: Thank you. Poroshenko: I have invited you to the debate today. If you are not in Kyiv now, I understand this and emphasize that today your team has been [ordered to assume] a position… After that, Zelenskyy interrupted Poroshenko, saying that no-one would put his “team in the position”, and hung up. The idea to hold a debate at the stadium belongs to Zelenskyy. Poroshenko accepted the challenge. After this, Zelenskyy has started to avoid holding a debate.
Ukrainian presidential candidates, Volodymyr Zelenskyi and Petro Poroshenko, have argued about election debates in a phone call aired by the Pravo na Vladu program of the television channel 1+1. Censor.NET reported. Poroshenko invited Zelenskyi to the channel’s studio. Zelenskyi called the studio and said he was visiting France at the moment, and Poroshenko was aware of that. “Petro Oleksiyovych is perfectly aware that I am visiting Paris, France, considering that fine cars of the Ukrainian Security Service have escorted me to the airport. I am meeting with the French president at 3 p.m. tomorrow [on April 12]. So, Mr. Poroshenko knows that I am not in Kyiv, and I am surprised that the esteemed presidential candidate [Petro Oleksiyovych] is inviting me to the 1+1 studio,” Zelenskyi said. Zelenskyi reminded the audience that he had invited Poroshenko to attend election debates at the Olympiiskyi Stadium on April 19. “He [Poroshenko] said he was okay with the stadium and accepted the terms. I would like to be called Volodymyr Oleksandrovych or Volodymyr, instead of ‘scum’, ‘addict’, etc. Let’s say this is still being done, but that’s alright, we are ordinary people and do not mind. I am happy to invite [Poroshenko] to the April 19 debates at the Olympiiskyi Stadium,” he said. Poroshenko said he had no interest in Zelenskyi’s travels, and the opponents started talking simultaneously and interrupting each other. Then, Poroshenko said the Zelenskyi team was told on Thursday that “it is still possible to hold the debates” on April 14 and he would be waiting for Zelenskyi at the Olympiiskyi Stadium. “First of all, no one will be telling our team to do anything. I am finished: [we will meet] at the Olympiiskyi Stadium on the 19th. That’s all, goodbye,” Zelenskyi said and ended the call. Source: https://censor.net.ua/en/n3121844
Ukrainian presidential candidates, Volodymyr Zelensky and Petro Poroshenko, have argued about election debates in a phone call aired by the Pravo na Vladu program of the television channel 1+1. Poroshenko invited Zelensky to the channel’s studio. Zelensky called the studio and said he was visiting France at the moment, and Poroshenko was aware of that. “Petro Oleksiyovych is perfectly aware that I am visiting Paris, France, considering that fine cars of the Ukrainian Security Service have escorted me to the airport. I am meeting with the French president at 3 p.m. tomorrow [on April 12]. So, Mr. Poroshenko knows that I am not in Kyiv, and I am surprised that the esteemed presidential candidate [Petro Oleksiyovych] is inviting me to the 1+1 studio,” Zelensky said. Zelensky reminded the audience that he had invited Poroshenko to attend election debates at the Olympiyskiy Stadium on April 19. “He [Poroshenko] said he was okay with the stadium and accepted the terms. I would like to be called Volodymyr Oleksandrovych or Volodymyr, instead of ‘scum’, ‘addict’, etc. Let’s say this is still being done, but that’s alright, we are ordinary people and do not mind. I am happy to invite [Poroshenko] to the April 19 debates at the Olympiyskiy Stadium,” he said. Poroshenko said he had no interest in Zelensky’s travels, and the opponents started talking simultaneously and interrupting each other. Then, Poroshenko said the Zelensky team was told on Thursday that “it is still possible to hold the debates” on April 14 and he would be waiting for Zelensky at the Olympiyskiy Stadium. “First of all, no one will be telling our team to do anything. I am finished: [we will meet] at the Olympiyskiy Stadium on the 19th. That’s all, goodbye,” Zelensky said and ended the call.
CEO of the 1+1 TV Channel Oleksandr Tkachenko has accused incumbent Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko of breaking into the studio of the Right to Power program without any invitation on Thursday, April 11, and is going to sue the head of state. — Ukrinform.
CEO of the 1+1 TV Channel Oleksandr Tkachenko has accused incumbent Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko of breaking into the studio of the Pravo na vladu [Right to Power] program without any invitation on Thursday, April 11, and is going to sue the head of state. Censor.NET reports citing his Facebook post. “You have earned only for a lawsuit from us after you shamefully broke into our studio during a live broadcast, a private company, without any invitation, using the status of the head of state and not going to leave. Even despite the polite hints of the host to take your seat in the studio, you again talked a lot. Wait [for our lawsuit] on Monday, including for your previous accusations against the 1+1 channel,” he said. Tkachenko also wrote that Poroshenko had been invited to the Pravo na vladu [Right to Power] program during all weeks of the election campaign. “There was just silence in return,” he wrote. The president appeared in the studio of the Pravo na vladu [Right to Power] program on April 11 and invited showman Volodymyr Zelenskyi to a presidential debate. However, the latter replied by phone that he was in Paris, where he is to meet with French President Emmanuel Macron on April 12, and added that he was ready to debate with Poroshenko at the Olimpiiskyi Stadium in Kyiv on April 19. Source: https://censor.net.ua/en/n3121872
Video with Zelensky appears on Web, showing him covered with a load of cocaine
Just 10 days before the election run-off on April 21, the presidential campaign is getting dirtier and dirtier. On April 11, social media users started sharing a video ad in which a truck hits presidential candidate political satirist Volodymyr Zelenskiy as he walks the street along with his supporters. The ad then shows a line of cocaine being sniffed up a banknote tube, with the words “Everyone has his own line” – hinting at allegations that Zelenskiy takes drugs. The ad, which uses footage from one of Zelenskiy’s own campaign advertisements, shocked many. Zelenskiy’s team said his competitor in the second round President Petro Poroshenko was responsible for the ad, and that Zelenskiy would now have to reinforce his security. “It’s unclear for us whether Petro Oleksiyovych (Poroshenko) enjoys watching a truck knocking Zelenskiy down, or if he enjoys watching the white line that appears after,” Zelenskiy’s team said on his official Facebook page on April 11.