Information operations · Information Warfare · Russia · Ukraine

Ukraine / Russia Ad Hoc Media Update (219)

Anonymous expert compilation, analysis, and reporting.

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The Vozhd canvasses arms control talks. Much on Russia’s ongoing descent. SIOP Redux, Red Flag Alaska and army SHORADS updates. Erdogan plays the victim card for his domestic audience. NATO Europe updates – the slow but inexorable shift to the East is apparent.

The Vozhd puts another absurd condition on talks with Ukraine – and Ze’s staff bite back. EC backs Kyiv again. PACE complains about Kyiv’s response to their appeasement of Muscovy. Interior Minister Avakov meets with Canadian DEFMIN Sajjan to negotiate supply of weapons, Ukrainian sources believe the Canadian surplus AVGP Grizzly, Cougar and Husky 6×6 APCs will go to the NGU where they would indeed be more useful than in Army units (the NGU is desperately short of armour as the Army cornered the supply).

BD reports on US Navy effort to upgrade Ukrainian naval bases to accommodate NATO surface combatants, and Seabees are now helping with the refurbishing of the Mykolaiv’s Kulbakino AB (home base of the 299th Tac Air Bde). Sea Breeze update.

Black Sea, Kerch, Crimea updates – broadcasting into occupied territories to be ramped up.

Donbas update. SBU covert op inside Donbas captures key MH17 witness. Mendel alleged to be regurgitating Russian propaganda. PSU transition to NATO logistics standards.

Retd LtGen Smeshko on Russian infiltration of Kyiv politics – notably two would-be pro-Russian MPs just lost their accreditations and now cannot stand in the election (a thorough audit is warranted to purge agenty vliyaniyacompletely). Nuke industry update.

Finally, some ROC blowback in Russia.

Putin says Russia is ready to talk to the US about arms control

President Vladimir Putin said Russia is ready to restart discussions with the U.S. over arms control and denied that the collapse of a significant nuclear missile treaty between the two nations would prompt an arms race.

Putin Confirms Submarine Hit By Deadly Fire Was Nuclear-Powered

Russian President Vladimir Putin has disclosed that a deep-sea submarine hit by a deadly fire earlier this week was nuclear-powered, and the defense minister assured him of the containment of the v…

Russian submarine hit by deadly fire is nuclear-powered, Vladimir Putin confirms – CBS News

Defense minister says reactor wasn’t affected by fire that killed 14 sailors; Russian media describe vessel as part of top-secret project

Russia says submersible fire tragedy is ‘state secret’ – CNN

The Kremlin has brushed aside questions about a fire on a deepwater submersible that left 14 Russian sailors dead, telling reporters Wednesday that key information about the incident was a “state secret.”

Russia submersible fire was in battery compartment – BBC News

Fourteen crew died in the fire on board the top-secret nuclear-powered military craft.

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Putin Regime is a ‘Decomposing Plebiscitary State,’ Yudin Says

Paul Goble Staunton, July 2 – “Russia has a plebiscitary state,” Grigory Yudin, a sociologist at the Moscow Higher School of Social and Economic Sciences, says; and it is now “at the sage of decomposition” both for reasons that are common to all such states and for those which are specific to the Putin regime. “The common problem of all regimes of a plebiscitary type is that they are constructed on the idea that it is necessary too appoint someone at their head and that further, the entire apparatus, including the parliament, any legislative organs and all organs of operational administration will be subordinate to him” ( All these organs will “simply work as a bureaucracy,” the sociologist continues, an idea that “sounds very attractive but that ends in one and the same way, with the quality of this bureaucracy falling very sharply. And people begin to look in a different way at the top man who really has all the power and think only about this.” Over time, the top man becomes trapped by the bureaucracy he has created and that sends him laws and decrees which he might not have issued on his own but which he increasingly has no option but to agree to lest by rejecting what those below him are doing he call not only them but also himself into question. Putin now faces that dilemma, Yudin says. Another factor is at work as well, the sociologist continues. “Russia is a depoliticized country” in which ever more people do not care what the regime is doing and live apart from it, something that constitutes “the murder of public policy” because all real decisions are made not with input from the population but behind the scenes in the presidential administration.” Such a situation can last only so long, Yudin suggests. Over time, people will want a voice and they will use whatever means they can to express it and reestablish a kind of public politics. That is what is happening in the city of Moscow now, where “a unified democratic opposition” has emerged. “Not all the people can agree with one another,” the sociologist observes. “But this in the present case now is in general not important. What is important is that it had taken shape. It has declared itself as an independent political subject.” And that represents a challenge not just in these elections but to the system as a whole. And that impact may occur faster than anyone expects because “not only Putin himself but all of his elite are in the nature of things not fitted to speak normally with people.” Russians can see this and that too is accelerating the decomposition of the plebiscitary state that the Kremlin leader put in place believing it could last at least through his lifetime.

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Kremlin’s Recent Actions have Landed It in Seven Self-Destructive Traps, Shevtsova Says

Paul Goble Staunton, July 2 – The Putin regime no longer has the resources to ensure that it stays in power indefinitely and so it has resorted to bluffing and other ill-considered actions, seven of which are paradoxically not helping to stabilize the situation but undermining the regime, Liliya Shevtsova says ( First of all, the Russian political analyst says, its ever more obviously fraudulent elections which are according to the constitution are supposed to be the basis of legitimation of the powers that be in fact mean that as Russians see they have no chance to change their rulers via elections, they are left with only one possibility: going into the street. Second, the new wave of attacks against major business are becoming ever more of a problem not because they are a continuation of the raiding carried out in the past. Rather, they highlight the formation of “a Triad – power, property, and the repressive organs,” with the last increasingly dominant and killing off any possibility for economic growth. Third, the powers that be have no option but to purge the overly greedy in the apparatus but by doing that they are “undermining the vitality of the powers that be” which depends on giving the apparatus and the silovki the right to feed off the population and the right to arbitrary action in exchange for their loyalty.” Fourth, the Kremlin is seeking to promote the idea of a foreign threat to unite the population, but “is mobilization possible if there is no ideology?” Or can it succeed if the regime is concerned about its own profits and its siloviki want to vacation “not in Crimea but beyond the borders of the Motherland?” Fifth, equally, the Putin regime is seeking to use militarism as a means of strengthening the existing system; but “militarism requires from the people a readiness to sacrifice both its own standard of living and even its lives. There are real doubts as to whether the population is ready to do so. Russian society is ever less united as far as that is concerned for another reason. The Putin regime is rapidly stratifying it and working to ensure that this inequality will be inherited. “Vladimir Putin is the most important instrument of this process. But success in doing so will above all require a change of political regime.” In short what has happened is that “Putin’s leadership” for many Russians is no longer “a goal in and of itself, but rather a means to an end. But do Russians want to live in the stratified state they are being driven into?” Almost certainly most do not either because of a sense of the injustice of it or of a feeling of opportunities foreclosed. Sixth, the Kremlin has misconstrued Russia’s return to the world stage. Its message is “’We stood up to them, and they have surrendered!’” But that isn’t what has happened. The situation is more complicated. “The West is concerned by an increase in Russian aggressiveness if it remains in isolation.” “But the West’s readiness for ‘conversation’ does not mean the return of Russia to the world club. The West seeks a new formula for relations with Russia as a hostile subject which one needs to worry about, must contain (from this comes the strengthening of NATO), but must not provoke.” As Shevtsova puts it, “Western handshakes mean not a sudden appearance of trust but rather forced hypocrisy.” And seventh, Shevtsova continues, “the need to demonstrate strength in the absence of any chance to assert itself by other means is turning out to be yet another trap” for the Putin regime. It can’t retreat because it sees this as a display of weakness. And therefore, it either won’t back down or will see to compensate for retreats by aggressive behavior elsewhere. Unfortunately for the regime, “when institutions have been no content, force becomes the only instrument in politics. But force always breeds counterforce. No one has done away with the boomerang effect in politics … sooner or later, the powers that be will have to deal with that response.” And today it seems, Shevtsova concludes, that “there is a sense of this inevitability and general fear of it hanging in the air.”

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Is Moscow Finally Going to Focus on Super-High Mortality Rates?

Paul Goble Staunton, July 2 – Having reduced infant mortality about as far as it can and seemingly powerless to boost the birthrate significantly among Russians, Moscow appears set to begin to try to cut super-high mortality rates among adults and especially among adult males, a far more difficult challenge and one the Russian authorities have devoted less attention to in the past. The reasons for this are both statistical and financial. Statistically, it is possible to boost both the total population and life expectancy by improving survival rates among newborns. And financially, it is actually less expensive to do that than to fight adult diseases and behaviors which often require changes in life styles such as lower levels of alcohol consumption. But a statement today by Deputy Prime Minister Tatyana Golikova about what she described as the “catastrophic” decline in the population of the Russian Federation, a decline of about 149,000 in the first four months of 2019, appeared to give equal attention to birthrates and to mortality rates ( The current rapid decline, she said, “means that births are falling and the rates of reduction of mortality are not what we would like.” Moreover, she said, the situation is even worse than many regions are reporting. Some in pursuit of good numbers are cutting reported deaths from cancer and circulatory diseases. In the past, Golikova has spoken almost exclusively about boosting birthrates. The fact that she is now talking about mortality rates suggests a change, albeit one that will be especially difficult to address given economic difficulties and Vladimir Putin’s health “optimization” campaign which has reduced the access of many Russians to medical care. Meanwhile, Rosstat released data showing mortality and fertility rates by region but giving more prominence to the former than in the past. One reason for this may be that the statistics agency reported that Moscow city was first and Moscow oblast second in terms of the number of deaths in 2018 ( If Golikova does take the lead in shifting the focus from fertility to mortality, she will be confronted by many entrenched interests including in the Kremlin itself and likely be defeated. But by focusing attention on an aspect of demography most Russian officials have long shied away from, she may prompt a new public discussion about where the country should be moving.


Air Force Chief Details US Response to Russian Nuclear Attack – Warrior Maven

What would the US do if Russia attacked with nuclear weapons?

The results are in for Red Flag-Alaska

Airmen from 5 countries participated in the training exercise, using live ordinance and dropping 681,505 pounds of munitions.

U.S. Army reshaping its capability to conduct large-scale operations against adversaries like Russia or China – Defence Blog

The U.S. Army has been laying the foundations to conduct large-scale combat operations against a near-peer adversary like Russia or China. In addition to the development of logistics systems and the strengthening of the military power of armored formations, the Army is now standing up short-range air defense units, known as SHORAD battalions, and offering a five-week pilot Stinger course for Soldiers in maneuver units. It’s part of a critical effort to defend maneuver units against the threat of aircraft, drones and cruise missiles, said Col. Mark A. Holler, commandant of the Air Defense Artillery School at Fort Sill. The Army is now reshaping its capability and capacity to conduct large-scale combat operations against a near-peer adversary like Russia or China, he said, so SHORAD units are once again needed. He added the Army was given a “wake-up call” when it observed the conflict in Ukraine. In the 1990s, every Army division had a SHORAD battalion to protect it. In 2017, none of the 10 active divisions had one. Last year, the Army re-established an active SHORAD battalion in Germany. The 5th Battalion of the 4th Air Defense Artillery Regiment was stood up with Avengers — modified Humvees with a turret on top and two pods of Stinger missiles. The Avengers were first used by the Army in 1990, but in recent years most had been relegated to the National Guard or stored in depots. A total of 72 Avengers were pulled out of mothballs last year from Letterkenny Army Depot in Pennsylvania, Holler said. Half are now with the 5-4 ADA and the others are ready for issue at a pre-positioned equipment depot in Germany. The Avenger is a short-range surface-to-air missile that can be attached to a turret on top of a Humvee or they can be mobile and fired over the shoulder. This means they can shoot on the move and are very portable, and why White thinks they will play a big role in providing short-range defense. The plan is to eventually have 10 SHORAD battalions again to defend maneuver units and other critical assets within each of the Army’s divisions, Holler said. These will be stood up incrementally over time, he explained, with the next four between now and 2024. Eventually, these battalions will upgrade from Avengers to the new Maneuver SHORADs on a Stryker platform with two Hellfire missiles, a 30mm chain gun, a 7.62 machine gun and four Stinger missiles. The first M-SHORAD prototypes are expected to roll off the assembly line in late July. The Army is also planning to stand up Indirect Fire Protection Capability, or IFPC units, in both the active component and National Guard to defend fixed and semi-fixed assets at corps and division-level, Holler said. These battalions, currently fielded with the Land-based Phalanx Weapons System, or LPWS, used to counter rockets, artillery and mortars — also known as the C-RAM system — will eventually transition to a new IFPC capability as well, he said.


Erdogan: US scrapping F-35 jet deal with Turkey would be robbery | News | Al Jazeera

Ankara faces new strains in US relationship over upcoming delivery of Russian S-400 missile system.

Turkey news: Erdogan FURY at US refusal to deliver F-35s – ‘It’s a robbery!’ | World | News |

TURKEY President Erdogan lashed out at the US after Washington refused to deliver 116 fighter jets that Ankara had already paid for – with the Turkish leader labelling it a “robbery”.

Despite Turkey’s assurances, US eyes sanctions over S-400 deal | Russia News | Al Jazeera

US still plans to impose sanctions on Turkey and remove it from fighter jet programme if it buys Russian air defences.

Erdogan military foreign policy plans led to S400 buy, tension with US – Business Insider

The decision to buy Russia’s S-400, despite US and NATO objections, is a state policy reflecting Erdogan’s foreign-policy designs, writes Bulent Aras.


Putin Visiting Rome To Bolster Ties With Italy, Meet With Pope

Russian President Vladimir Putin is visiting Rome to hold talks with Italian leaders and is also scheduled to meet with Pope Francis at the Vatican, in a possible prelude to a papal trip to Russia.

US present draft resolution condemning Russia’s return to PACE

04.07.19 13:04 – US present draft resolution condemning Russia’s return to PACE The representatives of the Congress propose to sanction Russia, “if on the 1-year anniversary of Russia’s aggression 7 near the Kerch Strait, the Ukrainian ships and the 8 detained sailors are still in Russian custody” View news.

Poland supported declaration, which started return of Russia to PACE

04.07.19 14:06 – Poland supported declaration, which started return of Russia to PACE The declaration stated that all countries-members should have a right to participate in the Committee of Ministers and Parliamentary Assembly, two Charter bodies of the Council of Europe, on equal terms. View news.

Moldova interested in cooperating with NATO

New Moldovan Prime Minister Maia Sandu has declared a wish to work together with NATO on reforming the Moldovan defense system, a representative of the government press service told Interfax on Thursday.

U.S. Air Force temporarily relocate MQ-9 remotely piloted aircraft to Romania – Defence Blog

The U.S. Air Force announced the temporary relocation of personnel and MQ-9 remotely piloted aircraft from the Miroslawiec Air Base in Poland to Campia Turzii in Romania. MQ-9 Reaper Remotely Piloted Aircraft, personnel and support equipment with the 52nd Expeditionary Operations Group Detachment 2 at Miroslawiec Air Base, Poland, have temporarily relocated to Campia Turzii Air Base, Romania, while the runway at Miroslawiec undergoes construction. The detachment is a geographically separated unit assigned to the 52nd Fighter Wing at Spangdahlem AB, Germany, whose mission is to conduct Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance in order to meet combatant commander objectives. The MQ-9s have been operating out of Poland since May 2018. This temporary relocation is conducted with the full cooperation of our NATO ally, Romania. The U.S. works closely with Romania and other NATO allies and partners to bolster collective defense capabilities and enhance regional security. The MQ-9 Reaper is an armed, multi-mission, medium-altitude, long-endurance remotely piloted aircraft that is employed primarily against dynamic execution targets and secondarily as an intelligence collection asset. Given its significant loiter time, wide-range sensors, multi-mode communications suite, and precision weapons — it provides a unique capability to perform strike, coordination, and reconnaissance against high-value, fleeting, and time-sensitive targets.

Romania orders corvettes from Naval Group for $1.4 billion

The French shipbuilder expects to deliver the first ship in 2022, though details depend on when a contract is signed.

Georgians Near Breakaway Regions See Quality Of Life Decline, Amnesty Says

Georgian villagers living near demarcation lines with two breakaway regions say their quality of life has declined since physical barriers were built, cutting them off from family, land, and markets.

Organizers Of Ongoing Protests In Georgia Say They Are Changing Tactics

As mass demonstrations in Georgia near the two-week mark, organizers calling for the resignation of the country’s interior minister over police violence during the initial rally against Russian inf…

‘Power In Truth’: Young Georgians Take Leading Roles As Protests Continue

Activists have been demonstrating in the Georgian capital, Tbilisi, since a first night of protests turned violent on June 20. Several young activists have emerged as protest leaders, and they’ve put their normal lives on hold to lend their voices to the movement.

Ukrainian community in Rome protests against Putin’s visit – news portal

Ukrainian community in Rome protests against Putin’s visit. The protest is held despite the ban on campaigning in the city centre. Political – news portal. The National Council for TV and Radio Broadcasting has permitted 22 companies to temporarily broadcast to the Joint Forces Operation area in Donbas and Crimea. The decision “to permit temporary broadcasting in the territories with a special broadcasting regime to companies whose previous permits have expired” and to issue new licenses for temporary broadcasting was taken on 4 July. The companies cleared for broadcasting are UA:First, UA:Donbas, Ukrainian Radio, Radio Luch, Ukrainian Radio.Pulse, UA Culture, UA:Crimea and UA:Kherson (all – the National Public TV Company); Army FM – Military Radio, Radio NV, KISS FM, HIT FM, Radio Rocks – Ukraine, Russian Radio Ukraine, Radio M, Radio Meydan; Ukrayina and Donbas of Ukrayina TV and Radio Company; Z ZIK, Pryamyy, Foreign Broadcasting Multimedia Platform (UA); ICTV, One Plus One, 5+, 5, First Western, Radio UNA.The First Ukrainian Nationalist Wave, Perets FM and Stylne of Class TV and Radio Company, Kherson FM and RELAX Radio. They will be able to broadcast in the following locations of Donetsk Region: Avdiyivka, Bakhmut, Volnovakha, Hirnyak, Druzhkivka, Kostyantynivka, Kramatorsk, Novotroyitske, Mariupol, Pokrovsk and the Maryinka checkpoint.


Putin announces conditions for dialogue with Zelenskyi

04.07.19 14:58 – Putin announces conditions for dialogue with Zelenskyi The Ukrainian president should stop to call the representatives of the Russian occupation authorities in Donbas as separatists. View news.

Putin names condition for negotiations with Zelensky – news politics | UNIAN

Russian President Vladimir Putin has said the negotiations between Moscow and Kyiv are possible if Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky starts “carrying out his election promises.” Putin wants Zelensky to engage in direct contact with separatists in Donbas.

It’s Kremlin puppets, not Donbas residents who we call “separatists”: ZeTeam – news politics | UNIAN

Mykyta Poturaiev, advisor to the political team of the President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky, said that the president’s words about “separatists” referred to the leadership of the so-called “DPR” and “LPR” terrorist groups, not Donbas residents. “Putin said that we should not call people names, branding them ‘separatists’. We do call everyone by their names – it’s Putin’s puppets that we name this way. We do not reject people from certain regions of Donetsk and Luhansk regions – we are in communication with them,” Poturaiev said during the discussion on “New Politics in Donbas” held in Kyiv, organized by ZeTeam, Novosti Donbassa reports. Read alsoRazumkov: Donbas reintegration process to be difficult, long He also expressed regret that in the uncontrolled territory, people will hear from the Russian and separatist media the position of Russian President Vladimir Putin, while being unlikely to hear the position of Team Zelensky. Earlier, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that a dialogue with Kyiv is possible “if Zelensky starts fulfilling his election promises, including establishing direct contacts with his own compatriots in Donbas, ceasing to brand them separatists.”

Zelensky: Russian leaders should hear that Donbas, Crimea are Ukraine

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky believes that the leadership of the Russian Federation should hear that Donbas and Crimea are Ukraine, and their return to Ukraine and the establishment of peace is the key to a restful sleep in Europe and around the world.

Residents  of occupied Donbas, Crimea are all Ukrainians, whatever language they speak

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky emphasizes that residents of the occupied territories of Donbas and Crimea are Ukrainians, no matter what language they speak.

European Commission reiterates support for Ukraine ahead of Kyiv summit

The European Commission reiterates its full and unequivocal support for Ukraine and intends to convey this message to Ukrainians and the world during the EU-Ukraine summit in Kyiv next week, Vice-President of the European Commission for the Energy Union Maros Sefcovic has said. — Ukrinform.

PACE President: Ukraine has commitment to invite Assembly observers for elections – news politics | UNIAN

President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) Liliane Maury Pasquier says Ukraine has the commitment to invite the Assembly to observe elections. The PACE president regrets the Ukrainian parliament’s decision to withdraw its invitation to the Assembly to observe the snap parliamentary elections.

Ukraine’s Rada not obliged to invite PACE delegation to monitor elections – MFA – news politics | UNIAN

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) of Ukraine emphasizes the Verkhovna Rada, Ukraine’s parliament, is not obliged to invite a delegation of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) to observe the elections in Ukraine. There are only two bodies whose decisions are binding: the Committee of Ministers and the European Court of Human Rights.

Ukraine, Canada draw up contract for military vehicle supply

Ukraine is developing a contract with Canada for the supply of armored vehicles. — Ukrinform.

Ukraine’s Interior minister discusses military cooperation Canada defense chief – news politics | UNIAN

Ukrainian Interior Minister Arsen Avakov met with Canadian Defense Minister Harjit Sajjan during the 3rd International Ukraine Reform Conference in Toronto, Canada, the press service of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine told UNIAN. The parties reviewed security issues in Ukraine, in particular, during the snap parliamentary elections on July 21.

Waschuk: Zelenskyi’s visit to Canada was successful

04.07.19 10:48 – Waschuk: Zelenskyi’s visit to Canada was successful Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyi’s first official visit to Canada was successful, Canadian Ambassador to Ukraine Roman Waschuk said. View news.

HM Revenue and Customs and Ukraine’s Security Service neutralise international criminal group

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) and the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) neutralised a large international criminal group that was smuggling counterfeit cigarettes into the EU. — Ukrinform.


US Upgrades Ukrainian Ports To Fit American Warships « Breaking Defense – Defense industry news, analysis and commentary

WASHINGTON: As tensions rise between Russia and Ukraine on the Black Sea, the US is upgrading several Ukrainian naval bases to give American and NATO warships the ability to dock just miles from Russia-controlled Crimea.  Centered at the Ochakiv Naval Base and the military facility at Mykolaiv — 40 miles east of Odessa and less than 100 northwest of Crimea — the American-funded effort includes reinforcing and upgrading existing piers and adding a new floating dock, security fencing around the bases, ship repair facilities, and a pair of brand-new Maritime Operations Centers from which Ukrainian and NATO forces can direct exercises and coordinate activities. The upgrades come after last November’s incident where Russian warships fired on and seized three Ukrainian navy vessels in the Kerch Strait between Russia and Ukraine. Russia is still holding the crews. The new American effort in Ukraine will likely rankle Moscow.  Since the Cold War, “the Russian military command has always held the fear that one day Ukraine would leave Russia and eventually there would be a NATO naval base on Moscow’s doorstep,” said Michael Kofman, an expert on the Russian military at CNA in Washington. “That fear led to Russia seizing and annexing Crimea, from which they could contest practically the entire Black Sea.” While Ukraine isn’t a NATO member, it does receive training from NATO forces and is currently hosting the annual Sea Breeze exercise that includes US and allied warships and several hundred Marines.  The exercise and the US support comes in direct response to Russia’s military buildup in Crimea. Since taking it by force in 2014, Moscow has sent some of its most advanced military kit to the peninsula, including five S-400 anti-aircraft battalions, ten warships, six Kilo-class submarines, and new fighter aircraft, thereby allowing Moscow to project power across the Black Sea.  Romania, which sits just 150 miles across the water from Crimea, is buying the Patriot air defense system from the US, and Romanian and American forces recently held a series of air defense drills in the Black Sea that simulated shooting down drones. Russia’s moves haven’t gone unnoticed in the rest of Europe.  While visiting Washington earlier this year, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said the alliance was discussing “what more we can do to enhance our security in the Black Sea region,” adding the allies had already agreed on “a package of measures to improve our situational awareness, and to step up our support for both Georgia and Ukraine.” The focus will be on training of maritime forces and coast guards, along with increased port visits and exercises. A majority of the effort is taking place at the Ochakiv, which has seen a series of visits from US Navy construction teams over the past few years. The work at Ochakiv won’t be wrapped up until August, Lt. Spencer Bull, operations officer for Underwater Construction Team 1 currently in Ukraine assessing the piers, told me. “The intent is to be able to use it for US and allied exercises,” he said, adding that his team of divers will work to reinforce existing piers, map out the seafloor to make sure bigger ships can dock there, and discuss where to place the planned floating dock.  Operation Sea Breeze All of this is happening in conjunction with the annual Sea Breeze exercise in Ukraine and the Black Sea. Over the past week, guided missile destroyer USS Carney and expeditionary fast transport USNS Yuma entered the waterway, transits which will no doubt be followed keenly by Russian forces operating nearby.  The arrival of Carney marks the fifth US ship to visit the Black Sea in 2019, and the first since the guided missile destroyer USS Ross was there in April. While there, the Ross participated in three interoperability exercises with the Bulgarian Navy, Georgian Coast Guard, and Turkish Navy. As part of Sea Breeze, the US Navy has also deployed a contingent of Marines, Navy divers, and a P-8A Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft. They’ll work with warships from Ukraine, Romania, Bulgaria and Turkey, all of which are part of Standing NATO Maritime Group Two. The ongoing NATO maritime exercises with Ukrainian forces in the Black Sea “seek to build combined capability and capacity in order to improve regional security and stability,” Lt. Cdr. Amelia Umayam, a 6th Fleet spokeswoman, told me in an email. “Our exercises in the Black Sea serve as a venue to work side-by-side with allies and partners to deter aggression and enhance our ability to work together.” The size of the US presence in the Black Sea will always be limited to the confines of the Montreux Convention, which limits the ship size and length of stay in the waterway of any warships from non-Black Sea nations. The aggregate tonnage of all non-Black Sea warships in the Black Sea must not exceed 30,000 tons and can only stay up to twenty-one days.  While there are limits to the American presence in the waterway, having new port facilities in Ukraine will allow US and NATO warships to sail, and dock, closer to Crimea than ever before, however. And the dual Maritime Operations Centers will give the Ukrainians the ability to track Russian activities while putting some US observers in the seat while American ships operate in the Black Sea.  The USS Carney’s visit to the Black Sea “reaffirms the US Navy’s commitment to this vital region,” Vice Adm. Lisa Franchetti, commander of U.S. 6th Fleet, said in a statement. “In this dynamic security environment, our naval forces throughout Europe remain steadfast and continue to operate routinely with our allies and partners in the Black Sea.”

Breaking Defense: U.S. upgrades Ukrainian ports to fit American warships – news politics | UNIAN

As tensions rise between Russia and Ukraine on the Black Sea, the U.S. is upgrading several Ukrainian naval bases to give American and NATO warships the ability to dock just miles from Russia-controlled Crimea.  The upgrades come after last November’s incident where Russian warships fired on and seized three Ukrainian navy vessels in the Kerch Strait.

The United States helps in restoring the airfield in Mykolaiv

In addition to the construction of a naval operational center for the Naval Forces of Ukraine at the naval base in Ochakov, US military builders during the Sea Breeze 2019 exercises help rebuild the runway of the Military Airfield in Mykolayiv. This is reported by the Ukrainian Military Portal The work involves the fighters of the 133rd Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 133. American military builders, using their equipment, dismantled the destroyed plates. Subsequently, on the site of the dismantled, it is planned to form a reinforcing mesh and pour it with concrete, for the formation of a new concrete slab in the runway of the aerodrome. Completion of dismantling of destroyed aerodrome runway slabs in Nikolayev Photo: US Navy / Lt. Amanda Caffey Completion of dismantling of destroyed aerodrome runway slabs in Nikolaev Completion of dismantling of destroyed aerodrome runway slabs in Nikolayev Photo: US Navy / Lt. Amanda Caffey In July 2017, the construction of a naval operational center for the Naval Forces of Ukraine began at the naval base by US military builders. In general, the US builds three facilities on the base of the Navy for the Armed Forces of Ukraine : • Marine Operations Center of the Ukrainian Navy • Repair workshops • Checkpoints Construction of a hangar for a repair shop by military builders from the United States at the Naval Operations Center in Ochakov Photo: US Navy All work is carried out at the expense of the US budget, initially the deadline for the delivery of the objects was called the end of 2018, but later – in 2019. In the Navy Command, the United States called the center 66% readiness as of the beginning of May 2019. Upon completion of the construction, the Marine Operations Center will manage the marine, air and coastal components, as well as the Special Operations Force.

Three NATO ships heading for Sea Breeze drills. PHOTOS

03.07.19 17:54 – Three NATO ships heading for Sea Breeze drills. PHOTOS The HMCS Toronto frigate of the Canadian Navy, British air-defense destroyer HMS Duncan and Turkish frigate TCG Turgutreis have transited the Bosphorus and are heading for Odesa to participate in the Sea Breeze 2019 exercises. View photo news.

Four NATO ships entered Odessa

Army ships from Canada, Great Britain, Turkey and Romania arrived in Odessa This is reported by “Dumskaya” The flagship of the Second Standing Group of NATO (SNMG2), the Canadian frigate Toronto (F333) at the first at 10:00 am at the 19th berth of the maritime station was moored. After it came the destroyer of the Royal Navy of Great Britain Dunkan (D37), we recall that he became the first British ship in the history of naval exercises Sea Breeze, which takes part in maneuvers from this country . Prior to that, the United Kingdom was limited to the land component and training of divers. At 11 o’clock, the Turkish frigate Turgutreis (F241) was moored at the marina of the port, followed by the Romanian frigate Regele Ferdinand (F221) by the 23rd berth. In Odessa ships will last until July 8.

French intelligence ship entered the Black Sea

To the Black Sea entered the French ship of electronic intelligence Dupuy de Lôme (A759). This is reported by the Ukrainian Military Portal His appointment is radio and radio intelligence in the areas of his stay. He was enrolled in the Navy in April 2006. Dupuy de Lôme (A759) was specifically designed for marine exploration in accordance with the MINREM project (Moyen Interarmées Naval de recherche ElectroMagnétique, Joint Naval Resources for Electromagnetic Research, or Ukrainian Joint Naval Resources for Electromagnetic Research). Dupuy de Lôme (A759) during the Bosphorus transition Photo: YorukIsik The installed technical complexes allow him to detect, intercept and conduct technical analysis of radiation from various sources in the frequency range from 300 MHz to 90 GHz, in addition, he can listen to modern communication systems, including satellite, and the equipment of the ship is able to intercept the most advanced types of transmissions, including email and mobile conversations. The ship is in high degree of readiness – in a year it can carry out 350 days work, of which 240 are at sea. In particular, it is provided by two crew that are on board replacing each other. The crew of the ship consists of 8 officers, 16 senior officers, 6 quarter-masters and 78 engineers. The task in the Black Sea is to observe the actions of the parties in the international exercises Sea Breeze 2019, as well as the Black Sea Fleet of the Russian Navy

French A759 Dupuy de Lome enters Black Sea

French Dupuy de Lome vessel entered the waters of the Black Sea for intelligence operations


82% of the Coast Guard ships and boats are outdated

“We need to develop maritime security. At us, 82% of the ship-yacht warehouse is morally obsolete, “said the head of the State Border Guard Service of Ukraine Serhiy Deineko. He spoke about the need for urgent modernization and improvement of the ship-and-boat structure of the Maritime Security Agency in an interview with the UNIAN news agency yesterday. ” We need to develop maritime security. At us, 82% of the ship’s boats are morally obsolete. Do you know what the value of one corvette is? One hundred million euros. Say, Ukraine can afford it? Such an answer, Sergey Deineko, asked the journalist: “What are the urgent needs and problems that exist in the State Border Guard Service? What needs to be upgraded and improved immediately? ” And further on the theme of updating the ship-boat structure he did not develop. It is worth noting that the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine is currently in talks on the joint production of French patrol boats of the type Ocea FPB 98 in Ukraine, namely to strengthen the marine component of the SBGS. It is planned that Marine Security will receive dozens of such boats. To date, the basis of the ship-and-ship structure of the Marine Security of the State Tax Administration is: the ship of the project 1241.2 “Lightning-2” (1984), several ships of the project 205P “Tarantul” (1982-87gg.), Boats of the type “Griff” (1980 / 90s , “Shmel ‘” (1960s / 70s), and the most modern small boats of the type “Kalkan” and UMS 1000 construction of 2000 / 2010th years.

Azov crisis: Russia presses charges against 18 Ukrainian POWs

Russia pressued charges against four more Ukrainian sailors

Over 20 companies cleared to broadcast to Donbas, Crimea – news portal

Over 20 companies cleared to broadcast to Donbas, Crimea. A total of 25 licenses have been approved. Political – news portal. Latest from Ukraine and the world today


29 attacks against JFO positions yesterday: five Ukrainian soldiers got injured

04.07.19 09:53 – 29 attacks against JFO positions yesterday: five Ukrainian soldiers got injured July 3, armed formations of the Russian Federation violated ceasefire 29 times, using weapons banned under the Minsk agreements 13 times. View news.

Ukraine official tells about situation in Stanytsia Luhanska following disengagement – news war | UNIAN

Ukrainian Deputy Minister for Temporarily Occupied Territories and Internally Displaced Persons George Tuka says it has been quiet in the village of Stanytsia Luhanska after the disengagement of forces and weapons started, and there are no attempts of an offensive by the occupiers. The Ukrainian side has already dismantled fortified positions, unlike the enemy.

Mined forest on fire near Stanytsia Luhanska, one person gets injured

Forest started burning near Stanytsia Luhanska

Covert operation by the SBU: a participant in the shooting down of MH-17 was arrested

The security service was arrested and the court arrested the former air defense chief of the Slovyansk brigade of the self-proclaimed “Donetsk People’s Republic” Volodymyr Cemakh. This was told to Ukrainian News by his lawyer Roman Gontarev. Cemakh was chosen as a preventive measure in the form of detention for 60 days. The lawyer said that he would meet with the client and the investigator on July 5. “He is detained in Kiev in the status of a suspect,” said the defender. He refused to provide detailed information, referring to the secret of the investigation. Detained action film veteran Vladimir Tsemakh Earlier, separatist media reported that in late June Ukrainian intelligence detained Cemakh in the occupied Snow (Donetsk region), stunned him and took him under the guise of a paralyzed pensioner to a controlled Ukrainian territory. It is noted that Chemakh, as the ex-commander of air defenses, could be a valuable witness in the case of the disaster of the Malaysia Airlines flight MN17 shot down by the Buk missile system on July 17, 2014 in the Donetsk region.

Donetsk separatists’ air force commander arrested in Kyiv – news portal

Donetsk separatists’ air force commander arrested in Kyiv. He is rumoured to have been abducted from occupied Snizhne. Political – news portal. The Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) has detained a former chief of air defence of the so-called DPR (self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic) Slovyansk Brigade, Volodymyr Tsemakh. He has been under arrest in accordance with a ruling of Kyiv’s Shevchenkivskyy district court since 29 June, his lawyer Roman Hontarev has said. “He is held in custody in Kyiv as a suspect,” he added. Photo: was arrested for 60 days. He is suspected of participation in a terrorist group. Earlier, separatist media said that in late June, the Ukrainian special services caught Tsemakh in occupied Snizhne, knocked him out and moved him across the line of contact as a paralysed pensioner to a government-controlled territory. Tsemakh could be an important witness in the case of the Malaysia Airlines MH17 Boeing shot down from a Russian Buk system above Donetsk Region on 17 July 2014.

German on trial for cooperation with ‘DPR’ militants

The trial of a German citizen, who is accused of participating in hostilities in eastern Ukraine on the side of militants from the so-called “Donetsk People’s Republic,” has begun in Germany, according to Deutsche Welle. — Ukrinform.

Ukrainian Prosecutor General’s Office asks Zelensky to explain his press secretary’s statement re attacks on Donbas civilians

The Ukrainian Prosecutor General’s Office (PGO) has asked President Volodymyr Zelensky’s Office to either confirm or deny public comments of his press secretary Yulia Mendel, who said that the Ukrainian army sometimes attacks Donbas civilians.

Kolomoysky about Donbas Conflict: It is inner civil conflict

Donbas is conflict between Ukrainians, – Kolomoysky

Razumkov: Donbas reintegration process to be difficult, long – news politics | UNIAN

Leader of the Servant of the People Party Dmytro Razumkov has said the process of returning the temporarily occupied territories of Donbas will be difficult and long. Key weapon in this war is information, Razumkov said.

Ukrainian PM’s ex-interpreter charged with spying for Russia released from custody – news ukraine | UNIAN

Holosiyivsky District Court of Kyiv has eased a measure of prevention pending trial for former interpreter  of Prime Minister of Ukraine Volodymyr Groysman, Stanislav Yezhov, who had been charged with high treason. The court eased the preventive measure to house arrest.

A unit of the Ukrainian SOF has returned from training in Bulgaria

The Special Forces Special Opeerations Detachment of the Armed Forces of Ukraine has returned from the international exercises “Trojan Footprint-2019” in Bulgaria This is reported by the press service of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine Military training was held in June 2019, based on 68 brigades of the Military Academy of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Bulgaria. Such SSU training took place for the first time in history, makes it unique, our fighters gained enormous experience of cooperation both in the tactics of small groups, worked out the activities of the SSO units during aircraft landing and evacuation, which further brought the SSA of the Armed Forces of Ukraine closer to the integration of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization Alliance Ukrainian Special Assignments in Bulgaria Photo: Ministry of Defense of Ukraine Trojan Footprint-2019 has attracted more than 2,000 special operations troops from 15 countries. Training “Trojan Footprint-2019” is designed to test the level of interaction between divisions of special operations of different countries in a hybrid war and armed conflict. Ukrainian Special Assignments in Bulgaria Photo: Ministry of Defense of Ukraine Recall that for the first time in history, a unit from a non-NATO country has been certified as a SOF unit and has the right to be involved in the NATO Response Force (NRF). This part was the 140th center of the Special Forces Special Forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, which passed the corresponding exams in Lithuania from Western colleagues.


During the year, the Air Command logistics worked in an experimental mode, namely according to protocols and standards close to NATO. It is noted that by the end of the year it is planned to switch to the logistic model of NATO in all PQs to the brigade inclusive. Alliance consultants have been helping to implement the new system strategically. According to Defense Express , this is reported on the official page of the Air Force Command of Ukraine on facebook. It is worth noting that the essence of the logistical reform is to make the system of troop supply “smarter”, more efficient, more technological and operational. Under the new system, there is a clear division into two branches of logistics: planning and provision. The first is a part of the headquarters and defines needs, plans logistics support, defines tasks for the order of parts and units. The second exercises logistical support for troops and provides direct management of security units. To date, logistics planning bodies have been formed at all levels, from the General Staff, to the lowest authority in the military administration. But the executive branch operates on the basis of only one of the Air commands. Currently, its effectiveness is being studied, some adjustments are made. Chief of the logistics department – Deputy Chief of Staff of the Air Forces Command of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, Colonel Sergei Kulyas, said that such a system of logistics is tested by the time and effectively operates in the countries of the North Atlantic Alliance. The Air Force Command believes that the transition to a new logistic structure is a crucial milestone in the defense reform, the ultimate goal of which is Ukraine’s accession to NATO.


Canadian APCs could go to the National Guard

Minister of Internal Affairs of Ukraine Arsen Avakov at a meeting with Canadian Minister of Defense Hargit Sedzhan, in Toronto, discussed the purchase of the newest armored machinery The meeting of ministers took place in the framework of the visit of President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky to Canada. According to Avakov, at the meeting discussed “the issues of military cooperation, including the interaction of the Armed Forces of Ukraine with the Canadian armed forces, with the National Guard of Ukraine and our other units.” ” We discussed specific cases about the latest armored vehicles and some components of the armament. It is about a specific modern type of weapon we need. I think that in two or three months we can discuss this in detail and sign a contract Given the recent activity of the Ministry of Internal Affairs in the procurement of foreign weapons, including 55 helicopters Airbus Helicopters , 20 patrol boats Ocea FPB 98 , the police and border guards with Heckler & Koch MD5 machine guns, and the fact that it is the interior minister, not the defense minister Taking part in the talks, it can be assumed that armored vehicles will also be bought, for the first time, for the structures of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, which, in particular, is a military formation with law enforcement functions – the National Guard. In this case, according to the minister’s words, it is also possible to assume that AVGP armored personnel carriers will not be outdated, some of the experts, and more modern versions, such as the LAV III armored personnel carriers, created on the basis of the Piranha III armored personnel carrier 8×8, as well as a base of American “Stryker” . Canadian BTRs can go to the National Guard It should be noted that this April Defense Minister Stepan Poltorak also reported on the ongoing negotiations for the purchase of foreign weapons , in particular the battle helicopters, artillery systems, anti-aircraft defense systems, anti-tank weapons and means of electronic warfare.

Coast Guard Patrol Boat “Podillya” Starts Drydock Refit

July 3, a yachting repair company LLC “YSK Service” went in for the repair of the ship Marine Security SBGS “Podillya” (BG-62), the project 205P, the code “Tarantul”. This is reported by Nikolayev – the city of ships In the past, the ship security guard “Grigory Kuropyatnikov” (BG50) , the project 1241.2, the code “Lightning” According to the repair information on the ship Marine Security of the SBGS “Podillya” (BG-62), the following works will be carried out: • cleaning, defect, repair and painting of the outer sheath, • repair of longitudinal editing, • repair of add-ons (AMG), • replacement of body treads • repair of shafts, crankshafts, propellers and stubby devices, • repair of anchor-mooring device, • repair of bottom-and-sea fittings, • repair of refrigerators, gases, cooling systems, control systems, etc. The preliminary repair of the ship took place in 2015.

Ukraine to establish Coordination Center to reform Ukroboronprom – news politics | UNIAN

Ukraine will establish the Coordination Center on Implementing Reforms of the Defense-Industrial Complex, whose priority task will be the reform of the Ukroboronprom state concern. The Coordination Center needs to conduct a quick and comprehensive analysis of the current situation.

SBU has info about Kremlin agents among Ukrainian politicians trying to get into power

Leader of the Strength and Honor Party, the ex-SBU State Security Service of Ukraine Ihor Smeshko claims that the SBU has the facts that among the leaders of some political forces who are trying to get into power are Kremlin agents. “The Security Service has these facts at its disposal, and one can open the files that are stored in the archives. (…) Information services, of course, were collecting this information, realized perfectly who is who. But it was not work for the enemy. Today, the situation is completely different and the approach is different,” said Smeshko in an interview with journalist Dmytro Gordon. Answering the question about who works for the enemy, the politician mentioned the Opposition platform – For Life Party. Smeshko is also sure that sooner or later relations with Russia will have to be renewed: “We have no choice – we must have friendly relations with them. But with mutual respect, taking into account each other’s national interests.”

SBU gives CEC evidence of absence of Kliuyev, Sharij in Ukraine

Ukraine’s SBU State Security Service within its competency has processed the available information and submitted materials to the Central Election Commission (CEC) about the absence of registered candidates for parliament in Ukraine, including blogger Anatoliy Sharij and Andriy Kliuyev, ex-Presidential Administration head under ex-Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych, the SBU’s press center has said.

Ukraine’s CEC repeals registration of Sharij, Kliuyev as candidates running for parliament – news politics | UNIAN

The Central Election Commission (CEC) has overturned its previous decision to register video blogger Anatoliy Sharij and fugitive ex-president Viktor Yanukovych’s ally Andriy Kliuyev as candidates running for parliament in Ukraine. The decision was taken on July 3.

Presidential party’s rating goes down to 42% – survey – news portal

Presidential party’s rating goes down to 42% – survey. Five parties are set to make it to parliament. Political – news portal. Latest from Ukraine and the world today

Power struggle should not be at state expense – expert – news portal

Power struggle should not be at state expense – expert. Political forces and society should draw the “red lines”. Political – news portal. Latest from Ukraine and the world today

Hungarian govt to propose to Ukraine restoring ties – media – news politics | UNIAN

Hungary will propose to Ukraine’s new president that bilateral relations should “return to the old path”, an era when the Hungarian community in Ukraine’s Zakarpattia region could fully exercise their acquired minority rights, the foreign minister said on the sidelines of an international conference on Wednesday. Hungary also stands ready to resume the work of the joint economic and environment protection committees, and to continue its Zakarpattia economic development program.

Kolomoiskyi says he rarely is in touch with Zelenskyi

04.07.19 16:01 – Kolomoiskyi says he rarely is in touch with Zelenskyi Ukrainian businessman Ihor Kolomoiskyi has said that he has not yet met with President Volodymyr Zelenskyi after his inauguration, but occasionally communicates with him and supports him morally. View news.

Ukraine’s preparations for termination of gas transit by Gazprom from 2020 under threat over fall in production by Ukrgazvydobuvannia

Ukraine should prepare for the full termination of Russian gas transit from early 2020, although the preparations are endangered over the stunning decline in own gas production, in particular, by Naftogaz-managed company Ukrgazvydobuvannia, Executive Director of national joint-stock company Naftogaz Ukrainy Yuriy Vitrenko has said.

Ukraine’s Energoatom and France’s Technetics Group sign memorandum of cooperation

Energoatom National Nuclear Energy Generating Company of Ukraine and Technetics Group France signed a memorandum of understanding and cooperation in nuclear energy industry. — Ukrinform.

Inside Chernobyl’s new £1.3bn megastructure built to seal in radiation 33 years after devastating reactor blast caused 4,000 premature deaths – The Sun

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Yekaterinburg Protests Both Reflect and Re-Energize Urals Regionalism, Sarutov Says

Paul Goble Staunton, July 1 – Although the protests in Yekaterinburg were nominally about a single issue – blocking official plans to build a cathedral in that city’s main square – they both reflected and re-energized Urals regionalism and prompt people there to think about themselves and their city and region in a new way, Dmitry Sarutov says ( “Despite the fact that the goal of the protest was very specific,” the Urals regionalist says, “the protest itself to a remarkable degree arose on the basis of Urals regionalism.” Those sympathetic to the idea of the Urals Republic were “represented at all levels, from ordinary people and organizers to representatives among those negotiating with the powers.” Just a few years ago, Sarutov says, he had concluded that the Urals Republic was something that inspired “only 40-year old political analysts and that younger people weren’t especially interested. But now in the clearest possible way that view has been shown to be false. Not only younger people but much younger people are interested.” Besides the appearance of the Urals Republic flag at the demonstrations, there have been other indications of that, he continues. At Yekaterinburg’s museum night, the Young Guard of United Russia set up a booth devoted to the Urals Republic “where the chief exhibits were the Urals francs,” the currency the republic issued in the early 1990s. Clearly, “the narrative about Urals independence is living its own life, little dependent on subjective and personal factors and it is going to be difficult or impossible to simply shut it down.” Nonetheless the Moscow regime is going to try, blocking websites, arresting partisans, launching propaganda campaigns, and attacking Yekaterinburg as such. But supporters of the Urals Republic are standing up for what they believe. One, Stepan Korepanov, a Libertarian Party activist from Chelyabinsk, brought a Urals Republic flag to the anti-cathedral demonstrations. On it was written, “You will be able to do everything,” something so threatening to Moscow that he quickly became the subject of FSB interest. According to Sarutov, there are now two versions of the Urals on display in the region: the subservient one Moscow wants and “the popular and outspoken one prepared to declare ‘the Urals are freedom,’ ‘down with appointees from the center,’ and ‘referendum.’” July 1st is the anniversary of the proclamation of the Urals Republic in 1993, and this year it is really worth celebrating because now, “thanks to the victory of that second ‘deep’ Urals [in the fight over the location of the new cathedral], regionalists can look too the future not simply with hope but with optimism.”