Information operations · Information Warfare · Russia · Ukraine

Ukraine / Russia Ad Hoc Media Update (223)

Anonymous expert compilation, analysis, and reporting.

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OSCE rejects Nordstream 2. More on the AS-12 Losharik accident. More on Russia violating Montreux Convention. PACE update. A dozen essays on Russia’s descent – Russian Art Film Simpsons is priceless. Omelas on the profitability of propaganda. Turkey update – S-400s about to be airlifted to Turkey. Georgia mayhem continues – Russia has well and truly poisoned its chalice there.

Kyiv’s Amb Chaley says on VOA that Ze and POTUS have chemistry – POTUS was the first Western leader to call and congratulate him. EU summit update and wrapup – Ukraine did not get the additional sanctions it sought. NATO visit to Kyiv postponed. Ukraine’s FMS request remains visible in media. Sea Breeze EX, Crimea and Azov updates.

Donbas update. French delegation visits JFQ HQ. Annual military parade cancelled – Ze will spend the money on bonuses to the troops this year. Tsemakh / MH17 update. Counter-propaganda glossary published (no English version yet). Industry update.

Politics update. Russian media meddling in Kyiv likely to result in prosecutions.

OCU update – Patriarch Filaret likely to be questioned by law enforcement over his support for Russian propaganda effort against OCU. He could be charged with aiding Russian propaganda.

ROC yet again in deep trouble.

UAWire – OSCE passes resolution against Nord Stream 2

The Political Affairs and Security Committee of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) has voted in favor of a draft resolution on regional energy security directed against Russia’s Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project, Deutsche Welle reports. Thanks to the US delegation’s efforts in the OSCE’s Parliamentary Assembly, the resolution mentions Russia’s Nord Stream 2 and Turkish Stream gas pipelines. US congressman Lee Zeldin said that Nord Stream 2 will increase Europe’s dependence on a single supplier of energy resources and affect countries in Central and Eastern Europe. He also remarked that the appearance of new Russian gas pipelines could lead to “an increase in corruption and instability in the region”. Zeldin also described the Turkish Stream project as an instrument for increasing Russia’s influence over other countries. This was sharply opposed by the Turkish delegation, which described it as “completely baseless and erroneous”. The Turkish delegation demanded that the US stop preventing other countries from choosing independently whether or not to connect to the various Russian gas pipelines. On 15 April, the Council of Europe confirmed the European gas directive with numerous amendments that will affect Nord Stream 2. The directive extends the EU’s gas market regulations to pipelines originating in countries outside the bloc. Thus pipelines originating in third countries but passing through EU territory, including territorial waters, must comply with the same requirements that apply to internal pipelines. This means that the operator company of Nord Stream 2 must be independent from Gazprom, and that 50% of its capacity must be reserved for alternative suppliers. Exceptions are possible, but only with the European Commission’s approval. The Nord Stream 2 underwater gas pipeline, with a designed capacity of 55 billion cubic meters per year, will span from the Slavyansk compressor station in Russia’s Leningrad province to the Baltic coast of Germany. The founder and controlling shareholder of Nord Stream 2 is the Russian gas monopoly, Gazprom.

Norway, UK should be on alert over accident with Russian submersible – media – news world | UNIAN

The accident at the nuclear AS-12 “Losharik” submersible, one of the Russian navy’s most secret projects, raises many questions about the causes of the disaster, and the actual tasks the crew were fulfilling in the Barents Sea. Almost all media agree that the AS-12 is not a research submersible, while its function was to perform specific operations in the territorial waters and exclusive economic zones of other countries.

The tragedy of the Russian “Losharik”. Norway and the UK worth thinking about?

The nuclear submarine AS-12 “Losharik”, which was one of the most secret projects of the Russian Navy, suffered on July 1, continues not only to raise many questions about its direct assignment as part of the Russian fleet, the causes of the accident, but also the purpose of the Barents Sea moment of emergency. Moreover, the versions regarding the mission of “Losharik” become not only more every day, but it also gives the impression that the Russian media are competing in who will give them more. It is not surprising that the most popular in the Russian media now versions of the Losharik catastrophe are voiced in conjunction with the performance of very specific works, for example, on placing devices at the bottom of the Barents Sea to fight the American anti-US SOSUS anti-submarine system. At least, such a version was voiced not only by the Russian, but also by the US Naval Institute. Or, the AS-12 was engaged in the installation of an analogue of SOSUS, the Russian positional underwater observation system “Harmony”. In turn, the publication “Izvestia” adheres to the version of the educational campaign and the study of the seabed, currents and depths. But much more realistic is the version of working out the interaction of various weapons systems, in particular, the imitation of the Poseidon project submarine using Losharik using the carrier boat, such as, for example, the BS-136 Orenburg. It is this version of events that the “Red Star” edition adheres to. More precisely, it was adhered to, since at the moment the article from the site of the official publication of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation was deleted. And this only suggests that the authors of the “Red Star” really blurted out the superfluous, without consulting with the authorities. Nevertheless, almost all media agree that the AC-12 was not a scientific submarine at all, but its function was to perform specific operations in the territorial waters and exclusive economic zones of other countries. In whose territorial waters? Very interesting question, as well as the version itself! However, a common feature of all versions, which can be seen through the assumed “fog”, “Losharik” and its crew, most likely consisting of officers of the naval special forces of Russia, was sent to perform some kind of secret operation or preparatory measures for it. The fact is that this version of the special operation in foreign territorial waters has a basis for being voiced if only because Russia has practiced sabotage operations more than once, for example, in the waters of Norway. [lohnik.png] In this case, the matter concerns the mining of oil production platforms in the waters of the North and Norwegian Seas, carried out in the summer of 1991 by a team of Baltic Fleet combat swimmers brought to the site of the operation by the hydrographic vessel GS-301. Interestingly, the crew of the “GS-301” consisted of 15 people. This is in the context of the tragedy with the crew “Losharika” expressed an opinion on another Russian resource “Conte”. Considering how much this state of emergency and the “Losharik” mission are covered with a veil of secrecy, it is not surprising if in reality it turns out that the AS-12 mission was very aggressive in relation to one of Russia’s sea neighbors.

‘Ask the Defense Ministry’ A transcript of the Kremlin’s non-answers on the Severomorsk deep-sea fire that killed 14 sailors — Meduza

Kommersant FM: About the tragedy in the Barents Sea. The Defense Ministry announced it only yesterday, July 2, although we know that the emergency occurred on the 1st. Does the Kremlin have an understanding of why this was made public only after what was almost a full day? When did the Kremlin itself learn what had happened?

A high-ranking crew in a shallow sea We asked Russian military experts to explain the Barents Sea submarine fire — Meduza

On the evening of July 1, a fire broke out on a deep-sea vessel operating near the Russian naval base at Severomorsk. Fourteen submarine sailors were killed by the resulting fumes. News of the fire became public only a full day later, and Russia’s Defense Ministry let another day pass before identifying those killed. Little else is known about the incident and the vessel where it took place: some media sources said it was a submarine, while many others cited sources who said it was the atomic deep-sea station Losharik. Meduza asked three military experts to give their estimations of what the vessel may have been doing in the Barents Sea, what might have caused the fire, and how seven first-rank captains ended up on the same craft.

UAWire – Kyiv: Russian submarines in Black Sea contravening Montreux Convention

, which regulates the usage of the Bosporus and Dardanelles straits and the Sea of Marmara, said Ukrainian General Staff spokesperson Leonid Zalyubovskiy, as reported by Ukrinform. The Ukrainian military has documented heightened activity of Russian submarines in the Bosporus strait, he noted. “By pretending to do technical maintenance, Russia is effectively carrying out a full-fledged deployment of submarines in the Mediterranean region,” the spokesperson explained. He did not clarify how many Russian submarines had been detected by the Ukrainian military, but remarked that what Moscow is doing is a “blatant violation of international law”. Ukraine has already notified Turkey, which is responsible for the strait according to the convention. Ankara is aware of the situation and is investigating, Zalyubovskiy noted. Zalyubovskiy also made mention of the increased Russian activity in the Mediterranean and Black seas observed by Ukraine over the last two months during a recent international scientific conference on maritime law in Kyiv. According to the convention, submarines from states bordering on the Black Sea can only leave the sea for repairs or servicing. The convention in question was signed in Montreux, Switzerland on 20 July 1936 and came into force on 9 November that same year. Initially it was signed by the Soviet Union, Australia, Bulgaria, Greece, Romania, the UK, Turkey, Yugoslavia, Japan and France, and Cyprus became a signatory in 1969. The document regulates the passage of military vessels through the Turkish Straits.

Russia Trojan horse in Council of Europe – media – news world | UNIAN

The PACE decision to return to Russia its voting rights was a mistake because Russia never ceased violating human rights and continues to incite new conflicts. In Ukraine’s east, people are being killed while Minsk Agreements are not being fulfilled. Against this backdrop, the Council of Europe decides that Russia must be able to speak at the Assembly, just like other member states. Giving Russia back the voting rights “gives them the free hand to be hegemonic.”

UAWire – PACE President tries to justify Russia’s return to Assembly

On July 7 the President of PACE Lillian-Marie Pasquier during her speech at the session in the Parliamentary Assembly of the OSCE said that the return of the Russian delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe would allegedly allow the Assembly to work closely with Russia on a number of problematic issues, reports Interfax-Ukraine. “Now we can work on problematic issues with Russian colleagues again. Restoration of the powers of the Russian delegation does not mean that we give them “carte blanche,” said Pasquier. In an attempt to justify PACE’s decision, Pasquier said that the restoration of Russia would allegedly serve to establish a dialogue with Moscow on the investigation into the crash of MH17 flight and the return of Ukrainian sailors and ships captured in the Kerch Strait. She also noted that PACE is not going to change the position on the Crimea and the Donbas that was expressed in 2014. “We continue to defend the principles enshrined in international law to which we are committed,” she said. Russia has not met a single condition for reinstatement in the organization. It has not de-occupied Ukraine’s Crimea and Donbas or released the Ukrainian political prisoners or prisoner-of-war sailors. On 1 July, Ukraine’s parliamentary committee on foreign affairs advised parliament to suspend the involvement of its permanent delegation in the functioning of PACE until the conclusions of the Venice Commission are obtained. The Ukrainian and Georgian delegations have also appealed the decision to reinstate Russia. Ukrainian MPs have advised President Volodymyr Zelensky and the Foreign Ministry to reconsider the expedience of involvement in other organs of the Council of Europe. Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Ukraine, Slovakia, Georgia and Sweden plan to draft a joint resolution in PACE opposing the reinstatement of the Russian delegation.

UAWire – PACE delegation leaves Ukraine after Kyiv withdraws invitation to observe parliamentary elections

The delegation of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), which arrived in Ukraine to assess the pre-election climate, has left the country ahead of schedule. PACE representatives explained that the premature departure was based on Ukraine’s withdrawal of its invitation to PACE to send observers for the country’s upcoming snap parliamentary elections. “The pre-electoral delegation has decided to cease its activity prematurely,” PACE said in a statement published on Wednesday, 3 July. The delegation worked in Kyiv on 2 and 3 July. During that time, the PACE representatives met with members of a number of Ukrainian political parties, public societies and the media, the OSCE’s Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights, as well as various diplomats based in Ukraine. The PACE delegation was made up of Mart van de Ven (Netherlands, ALDE), Aleksander Pociej (Poland, PEE/CD), Marco Nicolini (San Marino, UEL), and Nagif Hamzayev (Azerbaijan, FDG).

U.S. Air Force deploys squadron of F-15E fighters to Europe – Defence Blog

The U.S. Air Forces in Europe Air Forces Africa has reported that one squadron of F-15E Strike Eagle fighter jets was deployed to Europe. According to a statement, the U.S. Air Force deployed one squadron of F-15E Strike Eagles, Airmen, and associated equipment to Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, for theater familiarization and to conduct training with allies, partners, and other U.S. Air Force aircraft in Europe. The Strike Eagles are deployed from the 336th Fighter Squadron, 4th Fighter Wing, Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. F-15E Strike Eagles are all-weather multi-role fighters that can conduct air-to-air or air-to-ground strikes. Their advanced combat capability and lethality makes them one of the premier fourth-generation fighter aircraft. U.S. Air Forces in Europe’s forward-based posture demonstrates to allies and partners our continued commitment to defending mutual interests. “We regularly incorporate rotational forces that complement NATO rotations and European-based U.S. forces in order to deter threats from Russia or other malign actors, and to improve interoperability with our allies and partners,” added in the statement.


Window on Eurasia — New Series: For Putin and His Supporters, ‘Truth is the Enemy,’ Atai Says

Paul Goble Staunton, July 8 – Golineh Atai, ARD correspondent in Moscow from 2013 to 2018, says that for Vladimir Putin and those who support him, “truth is the enemy;” and to underline that point, she uses that phrase as the title for her bestselling memoirs about her time in Russia (журналистка-года-в-германии-путин-не-отдаст-того-что-уже-забрал/a-49433613). In a Deutsche Welle interview, she argues that “thirty years ago a revolution of the spirit and a cardinal shift in the worldview and way of thinking in Russia did not occur. Everything as before is being translated from one generation to the next.” And that is having the most disastrous consequences for Russia, Russians and the world. “The older and middle-aged generation [in the Russian Federation] to a large degree thinks in the old way. They have or have turned back to the old attitude about facts: We don’t need them, don’t talk about this. Facts do not play a role our truth does not depend on them. And we are even proud that facts are not important: disinformation legitimates our political system.” The younger generation is different, Atai says; it is patriotic; it would like to live in Russia; but it has the sense that nothing there is going to change and that living in the West is a better choice. In other comments, the German journalist says that in her view, “the central conception of ‘the Russian world’ will continue to function in the immediate future. Putin will not give back what he has already taken: Crimea, part of Eastern Ukraine … In the Donbass, there is no peace … it is a front” where people continue to shoot at each other. Russia under Putin has become a repressive and revanchist state. Its repressive nature is causing ever more Russians to leave, although not to break ties with their homeland entirely. Its revanchist qualities are something that many in the West generally and in Germany in particular don’t want to face up to. Atai says it is critically important that no only Russia but Germany and the entire world recognize that “Ukraine is not Russia.” Tragically, many Germans still think about the world with a map that ceased to exist in 1991. “Ukraine has already for a long time been a sovereign state which has separated from Moscow both legally and spiritually.” Germans have a particular responsibility to do this, the journalist says. Their own history has forced them to come to terms with the dangers of revanchism in themselves; they need to be “especially critical” when the policies of others as now in Moscow are “revanchist,” rather than denying that fact altogether.

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Increasing Impoverishment of Russians Will Help Keep Putin in Power, Obukhov Says

Paul Goble Staunton, July 7 – Many analysts argue that the increasing impoverishment of Russians could trigger a social and political explosion (e.g,, even though economic problems have never sparked major protests in the post-Soviet states ( But while that is true, few have gone as far Sergey Obukhov, a secretary of the Communist Party of the Russian Federation (KPRF), who argues that in fact, the increasing impoverishment of Russians is helping Vladimir Putin and his regime to retain power for two compelling reasons ( On the one hand, he tells Andrey Polunin of Svobodnaya Pressa, the increasing impoverishment of the population at large means that the Kremlin is still extracting more resources from it in order to buy off the elites by allowing them to acquire more wealth and to export much of it to the West. And on the other, Obukhov continues, “the more power people there are, the firmer the current powers that be are” because the very poor are “completely dependent on the powers” and aren’t going to rock the boat, unlike the middle class. Indeed, he says, the October 1917 Bolshevik revolution was “in essence a revolution of the middle class.” One must not forget, the Communist apparatchik continues, that “in those years, the industrial proletarian in Petersburg consisted of educated citizens who earned a good deal of money.” Today, the middle class, itself impoverished, exists in “an increasingly atomized society” and therefore does not play the same role. It “can’t defend its rights.” And that is what the powers that be are counting on, yet another reason to think that impoverishment of much of the population will help maintain the Putin regime rather than weaken it.

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Putin is Only Late When He Thinks That Works for Him, Yakovenko Says

Paul Goble Staunton, July 7 – Last week, Vladimir Putin showed up for his appointment with Pope Francis more than an hour after the scheduled time, the latest case of his failing to be on time when meeting with this or that world leader. But Putin is prompt enough when he thinks that is important as when he is to appear on television. That suggests, Russian commentator Igor Yakovenko says, that Putin decides whether on the basis of what is important for him and on a calculation that making others wait for him gives him a psychological advantage, something unlikely to change until someone refuses to meet with him when he arrives late ( Yakovenko provides what he says is an incomplete list of Putin’s late arrivals, including more than four years in the case of German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich, and more than three hours for US Secretary of State John Kerry, and Belarusian President Alyaksandr Lukashenka. Putin has been late for meetings of all kinds. His former wife Lyudmila recalls in her memoirs that “I was never late, but Vladimir Vladimirovich always was. An hour and a half was the norm. I remember how I stood at the metro. The first 15 minutes of waiting was normal, a half hour also. But hen an hour passed, and he hadn’t appeared, I began to cry.” Some people are never punctual, Yakovenko continues, but Putin isn’t one of those. He is on time when it serves his interests and he will make people wait when he feels that gives him a psychological advantage. Someone who is systematically late is stealing the time of others. “That is, he is a thief” and one demonstratively so. One of the few foreign leaders who responded appropriately was Israel’s Shimon Peres. Putin made him wait for an hour and a half; and so at their next scheduled meeting, Peres made Putin wait the same length of time according to the principle of “an eye for an eye,” Yakovenko says.

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Magadan Now Most Anti-Putin Region in Russia and for Good Reasons, Its Residents Say

Paul Goble Staunton, July 8 – Recent polls show that if presidential elections were held this week, only 36 percent of voters in Magadan would cast their ballots for Vladimir Putin, a figure far lower than the roughly 50 percent in the Russian Federation as a whole and one that makes it the most anti-Putin region in the country. Andrey Pertsev of the Meduza news agency visited the region which is still associated with the GULAG in the minds of most and found that in addition to the problems they have in common with other regions, Magadan residents have a long list of reasons for turning away from Putin and his regime ( While their nominal incomes put them in the top five regions of the country, Magadan residents say their actual incomes are only about half what officials say; and their standard of living is reduced because prices for basic goods like food are many times higher than in other regions. Moreover, and again in contrast to most Russian regions, Pertsev says, they are dependent on air connections to the rest of the country. Those are subsidized but still expensive and hard to get tickets for. As a result, many in Magadan cannot afford to make what had long been their annual trip to central Russia. And Magadan residents were hit perhaps even harder by the pension age boost than other Russians because many of them expected to be able to retire to somewhere else in Russia and now can’t afford to do so, at least as soon as they had planned. They blame Putin for that, the journalist says. But the most important difference between Magadan and other regions and the one that explains most of the anger at Putin is that Magadan residents compare their current state not with the wild 1990s as the Kremlin has succeeded in getting most Russians to do but with the last decades of Soviet power. For Magadan’s people – and their number has fallen by more than half since 1991 – the golden age was the Soviet period and they compare what Putin has wrought to that period. And that attitude has been compounded by the sense many of them have that the Kremlin has written off the Russian north for all its claims to the contrary. Not only have Russian officials from Gaidar on talked about the need to reduce the population of the North because of its costs on the state budget but they have not provided the funds needed to maintain public institutions like schools and hospitals. Residents of Magadan feel they are being singled out for mistreatment by the center. And the officials Moscow has sent to Magadan have made things even worse by not listening to the population. The local governor wants to take away the city’s main square not for a cathedral as in Yekaterinburg but for a school. Residents oppose this plan as they have since the 1980s. And they blame Moscow’s man, that is, Putin’s man, for that as well.

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Moscow to Blame for Another Cause of Massive Floods – Allowing Chinese to Overcut Siberian Forests

Paul Goble Staunton, July 8 – Russian commentators are already linking the extent of the flooding disaster in the Transbaikal to the Putin regime’s cutbacks in monitoring and emergency services ( Now, they are pointing to another cause for which the Kremlin also bears full responsibility. That is the center’s policy of allowing the Chinese to overharvest forest resources in Siberia and the Russian Far East, a policy that has profited Russian officials but that means precipitation is not held by the land but floods into the rivers leading to downstream flooding of the kind that is costing lives in the region now. In Izvestiya today, journalist Valeriya Nodelman reports that “ecologists think that the most severe flooding in Irkutsk Oblast which has cost 22 lives assumed such a catastrophic character as a result of overcutting of forests” ( She cites the work of Yury Pautov and Aleksandr Borovlyev, who studied the impact of deforestation on flooding in Komi and whose model explains what has happened in the Transbaikal: When too many trees are cut down, water runoff increases, ground water supplies decline, and the chances of flooding rise dramatically. Aleksey Yaroshenko, another ecologist, agrees saying that “one of the factors” which has led to the current disaster is the overcutting of forests by Russian and Chinese firms, some of whom have operated illegally but to the profit of local and regional officials. Russian residents in the region are now paying a high price for that. Unless radical changes are made in government policy and enforcement, he suggests, the risks of flooding in the future will only increase; and “this is very dangerous.” Moscow is responding but it may be a case of shutting the door after the horse has fled. Vladimir Putin on May 16 criticized local officials for allowing overcutting, even though his regime has promoted exactly that. And two days ago, the Irkutsk Oblast forest minister was arrested in a case about illegal cutting down of forests there. But far more than that will be needed to prevent more flooding; and the victims of the current floods are likely to take little comfort from such declarations and arrests. Indeed, they may see them as confirmation of what many likely think: Russian officials from top to bottom are to blame and will always try to shift responsibility to someone else.

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Russian MVD Admits It has Misinterpreted Law to Block Those Seeking to Rehabilitate Their Ancestors

Paul Goble Staunton, July 7 – Russians who have sought to have their relatives, repressed in Soviet times, rehabilitated have been caught in an almost hopeless vicious circle. Officials wouldn’t give out the files on such people if they hadn’t been rehabilitated, and their descendants couldn’t apply for the rehabilitation of their ancestors unless they had these files. But now, Meduza’s Kristina Safonova suggests this system may be breaking down, with the interior ministry admitting it has been misinterpreting the law and the Supreme Court ruling in favor of actor Georgy Shakhet who had been caught in this trap as he has sought to have his grandfather rehabilitated ( After three years of fighting with the Russian judicial system, Safonova says, Shakhet became “the first who was able to show in court that this vicious circle arose out of an incorrect interpretation of the law by the law enforcement organs,” a victory that may or may not offer hope to others now caught in that situation. The Supreme Court on Friday overruled a lower court and “directed the Main Administration of the Ministry of Internal Affairs for Moscow Oblast to acquaint [Shakhet] with the criminal case of his grandfather,” who was shot in December 1932 after a trial by a Stalin-era troika. Shakhet found out about his grandfather’s case by accident: his relatives didn’t want to talk about him, but his doctor told him he had seen his grandfather’s name on a list of repressed people maintained by the Memorial human rights organization. The actor went to court in November 2016 when the interior ministry refused to release the documents of the case. The interior ministry officials said that his grandfather had been convicted of an ordinary and not a political crime and therefore the law “about the rehabilitation of victims of repression” did not apply. Shakhet went to a local court, appealed its decision to the Moscow city court, and finally won his case in the Supreme Court. Two attorneys who helped him, Marina Agaltsova of Memorial and Anna Fomina of Command 29, said that many officials believe that if someone wasn’t rehabilitated early on, then he hardly can be rehabilitated now. Between 1993 and 2018, they report, almost three million people were rehabilitated, but “almost a million” cases were rejected. Because decisions about rehabilitation are made in the procuracy and because Russians typically avoid going to court because of its costs, its risks and the likelihood they won’t win, the number of legal cases regarding this situation has been relatively small. But Shakhet has been willing to go to the end. In his case, the lawyers continue, the interior ministry admitted that its officers had been interpreting the law incorrectly in denying those seeking case files, something “unprecedented” in their experience. “Officials of the law enforcement organs never acknowledge that they have incorrectly applied the law,” Fomina says. “The judge was surprised.” Shakhet is extremely pleased by his victory and now plans, with the necessary documents in hand, to secure the rehabilitation of his grandfather. If he succeeds and if his case attracts attention, it is entirely possible that this could trigger a new wave of rehabilitations, one almost as large as the one that swept through Russia in the early 1990s.

Revenge of the editors Wikipedia has blocked a group of users who edited Russian-language articles to praise local governors and take down opposition activists — Meduza

Mikhail Gruznov is the co-founder of Wikify, a digital publishing group that produces commercial and nonprofit projects using the Russian version of Wikipedia. In late February of 2019, Gruznov noticed that a new editor operating under the handle Oldfishkeeper had appeared on the crowdsourced platform. The account had been created very recently, in January, and its owner had gotten started by making edits to a wide variety of articles that had to do primarily with chemistry and technology. For example, Oldfishkeeper edited the Wikipedia entry for the Bessemer process, an obsolete method of producing steel from iron ore, to add a paragraph about the applications of the method in non-ferrous metallurgy based on the discoveries of Russian engineer Vasily Semennikov. In an article about electroforming, Oldfishkeeper inserted multiple references to the technology’s creator, the physicist Boris Yakobi.

Seven FSB officials have been arrested in a robbery case. They may have also stolen money during searches of corrupt officials. — Meduza

Seven employees of Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB) have been arrested in an armed robbery case. The Moscow Garrison Military Court has jailed five of them to await trial and placed two under house arrest.

An animator from Moscow turned ‘The Simpsons’ into a very depressing short about a very depressing Russian family — Meduza

Alexey Semyonov, an animator from Moscow who works under the pseudonym Lazy Square, has released a gloomy version ofThe Simpsons’ opening sequence that depicts a stereotypical version of a Russian family’s daily routine. The results are rather depressing: the son steals a teenager’s skateboard, the father steals from work, the mother curses at a grocery store cashier, and the daughter is threatened by police. It all ends in spilled borsch and domestic violence.

THE SIMPSONS. Russian Art Film Version // Симпсоны. Артхаусная русская версия – YouTube

Lazy Square Published on Jul 7, 2019 Music: Goran Bregović – Ederlezi Film Director: Lenivko Kvadratjić (Lazy Square) For Non commercial Use

Why The Soviets Never Landed On The Moon

The Soviet Union beat the United States to the punch in almost every category of space exploration. Except one. As the world marks the 50th anniversary of Neil Armstrong’s “giant leap for mankind” on July 20, 1969, we take a look back at the Soviet Union’s own efforts to land a man on the moon — and what went wrong.

How much do pro-Kremlin outlets earn on disinformation? |Euromaidan Press |

Pro-Kremlin disinformation is not only heavily state-funded (for example, financial support for RT goes as high as nine figures), but also, thanks to its online presence, earns vast amounts of money through its YouTube channels. How much exactly? New research by Omelas tries to answer this question. With over 1.9 bn registered users every month, YouTube has become a battlefield for audience attention. Pro-Kremlin outlets take part in this battle, too. Whenever you watch something on YouTube, advertisements appear. This is how money is earned – both by YouTube (which takes 55% of the revenue) and by the authors of the content you are watching (who take the remaining 45%). In order to profit, YouTube channels need to have at least one thousand subscribers and 4,000 hours of watch time; they also need to be qualified by YouTube. The scheme is simple: the more views, the more money. Between 2017 and 2018, pro-Kremlin outlets researched by Omelas (including NTV, different language versions of RT, Russia 1, Ruptly TV, TV Zvezda, and others) earned at least 6 million USD (whereas YouTube earned 7.2 million). The number comes as a result of research based on costs per view, the results of which were then normalised to account for possible different costs in different languages or countries. Unsurprisingly, the biggest revenues came from Russian and English versions, as the main languages of pro-Kremlin channels. Spanish and Arabic versions of RT contributed to the overall 6 m dollars, too. Total revenue from YouTube ads coming from pro-Kremlin outlets in different languages (2017-2018, in USD)

Evaluating YouTube-Kremlin Partnership – Omelas – Medium

YouTube plays a key role in the information operations and public relations of the Russian government, from the channels and networks of minor ministries to Russia Today, which claims the most views…


Preparations Underway to Deliver Russian S-400 Systems to Turkey – Erdogan – Sputnik International

ANKARA (Sputnik) – The preparations to deliver Russian S-400 air defence systems to Turkey are ongoing, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Monday.

S-400 system may be delivered to Turkey on Tuesday, newspaper says – Military & Defense – TASS

The loading took place on July 8

Turkey proceeds with Russian missile system deal despite US, NATO warnings

The delivery of the Russian-made S-400, a mobile surface-to-air missile system, is said to pose a risk to the NATO alliance as well as the F-35, America’s most expensive weapons platform.

Erdogan Confirms Russian S-400 Missile Systems En-Route to Turkey

Russia’s controversial sale of S-400 air defense missiles to NATO member Turkey has now reached the delivery stage.

Turkey is the poster child for what happens when politicians mess with central banks – CNN

Central banks aren’t perfect, but they work best when politicians aren’t calling the shots. That pillar of monetary policy is now under siege.

Turkish currency and stocks drop after President Erdogan fires top central bank official

Turkey’s stocks and currency dropped on Monday as investors ditched Turkish assets after the country’s central bank governor was ousted by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Former Erdogan ally resigns from AK Party, hints at rival party – Reuters

Former Turkish deputy prime minister Ali Babacan said on Monday he was resigning from President Tayyip Erdogan’s AK Party over “deep differences” with the party’s direction and said that Turkey needed a new vision.

Turkish economic crisis is of Erdogan’s making – The National

Sacking the central bank governor has damaged the credibility of an institution that depends on its independence

Erdoğan writes unorthodox interest rate theory into economic blueprint | Ahval

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan inserted a controversial theory on the relationship between interest rates and inflation into an economic blueprint for the next five years, Gazete Duvar reported on Tuesday.

China-Turkey ties revolve around Xinjiang – Global Times

China’s policies on Xinjiang are part of its internal affairs that no other country has a right to interfere with. Erdogan’s remarks on the Xinjiang question are the premise and guarantee for upgrade of bilateral cooperation.


Putin rejects unanimous State Duma recommendation for sanctions against Georgia — Meduza

Russia’s State Duma unanimously called on the country’s federal executive branch to introduce sanctions against Georgia “in connection with anti-Russian provocations” there. The recommendation chastised “radical forces in that country” for spurring the “further degradation of Russian-Georgian relations.” The Duma’s vote followed a wave of anti-Russian demonstrations and an anti-Putin, profanity-laden tirade broadcast live on air by a Georgian television host.

Putin Says He Opposes Call For Sanctions Against Georgia

Russian President Vladimir Putin has rejected a parliamentary call to impose sanctions on Georgia, saying patching up strained relations was more important than reacting to provocations by “scumbag…

Georgian TV host’s obscene on-air anti-Putin tirade sparks temporary cut, spontaneous protests — Meduza

The Georgian television channel Rustavi 2 temporarily went offline on the night of July 7 after host Georgy Gabunia unleashed a profanity-laden tirade on air against Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Channel goes off air after expletive-laden Putin rant – BBC News

The Kremlin condemned Georgia’s main commercial TV channel after the presenter’s offensive remarks.

Georgian TV station decides not to fire journalist who unleashed a flood of anti-Putin profanity on-air — Meduza

The Georgian television channel Rustavi 2 has decided not to fire journalist Georgy Gabunia, who spent the first minute of his Sunday show on an obscene tirade targeting Russian President Vladimir Putin.

UAWire – Georgian TV presenter who insulted Putin temporarily suspended

Georgi Gabunia, a Georgian presenter from the Rustavi-2 TV channel, has been suspended from work after he let off a tirade of insults against …

Russian sanctions for Georgian journalist insulting Putin on air could cost Georgia 10% of GDP – State Duma Speaker – news world | UNIAN

Russia’s sanctions on Georgia for a local journalist insulting Russian President Vladimir Putin on air could cost the country 10% of GDP, that’s according to State Duma Speaker Vyacheslav Volodin. Vyacheslav Volodin said that the Russian Federation could ban imports of Georgian wines and mineral water, as well as limit remittances to Georgia.


Ukraine’s Ambassador: Zelensky, Trump “will have chemistry” during upcoming meeting – news politics | UNIAN

Ukraine’s Ambassador to the United States Valeriy Chaly has said Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and U.S. President Donald Trump will “have a certain chemistry” during an upcoming meeting. Representatives of Ukraine’s president will come to Washington, D.C., this week to prepare the visit together with Ukrainian diplomats. “The question is the following: neither Zelensky’s presidency, nor Ukraine, nor the United States needs a picture. Just a picture between two presidents. They will have a chemistry between them. They have already created that chemistry of relationships when talking over the phone,” Chaly said in an interview for the Voice of America’s Ukrainian service. According to the ambassador, Zelensky’s visit to Washington, D.C., for a meeting with Trump will be prepared in August-September. Representatives of Ukraine’s president will come to Washington this week to prepare the visit together with Ukrainian diplomats, he said. “Another thing is what the content will be. This meeting lays down further steps, at least our work as an embassy, for a year. Therefore, we are working on it. Not only we. This week representatives of President Zelensky will arrive and we will work together to determine the dates of the visit and its content. I think this is a matter of the coming months. I think August or September. I think the visit should be fully prepared by that time,” Chaly said.

I believe we are moving towards a sustainable ceasefire and I welcome the unwavering position of the EU as regards Russia’s behavior – Head of State — Official website of the President of Ukraine

At the 21st Ukraine-EU Summit, the parties summed up the results of the Ukraine-EU relations and  discussed plans and priorities for the future. President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy stressed that the future was impossible without peace in Ukraine.

Zelensky: Peace can be returned to Ukraine only by “diplomatic weapons” – news politics | UNIAN

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky declares that peace can be returned to Ukraine only by “diplomatic weapons”. The president invites everyone who doubts the extension of sanctions against the Russian Federation to visit Donbas.

Zelensky hopes war in Donbas to be over within 12 months – news war | UNIAN

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has said he hopes the war in Donbas will be over in a year. The president recalled the recent disengagement of forces in Stanytsia Luhanska by both warring sides.

Ukraine-EU summit participants failed to agree on stepping up Russia sanctions for Kerch Strait incident – Poroshenko

Participants in the Ukraine-EU summit on Monday failed to reach agreement on stepping up sanction pressure on Russia for non-compliance with the UN International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea’s order on freeing the Ukrainian sailors detained in the Kerch Strait area in November 2018, European Solidarity Party leader and former Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said.

EU’s sectoral, “Crimea” sanctions against Russia to be prolonged – Zelensky – news politics | UNIAN

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky said that the sectoral and “Crimea” sanctions that the European Union had introduced against Russia will be prolonged. Sanctions imposed on the Russian Federation must be extended until Moscow fully implements the Minsk agreements, restoring Ukraine’s territorial integrity.

Tusk notes Russia’s particular responsibility” to implement Minsk agreements – news politics | UNIAN

EU Council President Donald Tusk once again confirmed the EU’s “unwavering support for Ukraine’s territorial integrity, sovereignty and independence,” noting Russia’s “particular responsibility” to implement Minsk agreements. Also, he said the EU condemns the Russian measures “entitling Ukrainian citizens of the areas currently not under the control of the Government to apply for Russian citizenship in a simplified manner.”

Matti Maasikas appointed new EU ambassador in Ukraine

Estonian diplomat Matti Maasikas is assigned to the position of the Head of European Union Delegation in Ukraine, as the European External Action Service informs. Maasikas was the Head of Estonian Delegation in EU from 2011 to 2016. Currently, he holds the rank of the Deputy Minister on EU affairs in Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Estonia.

UAWire – Ukrainian President Zelensky invites Putin to meet in Minsk

In a video message, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky invited Russian President Vladimir Putin, US President Donald Trump, British Prime …

Belarus responds to Zelensky’s proposal to hold direct talks with Putin in Minsk – news politics | UNIAN

President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko supports the proposal of his Ukrainian counterpart Volodymyr Zelensky on holding an international summit in Minsk with Russian President Vladimir Putin and leaders of several other countries. Lukashenko expressed support for Zelensky’s initiative.

North Atlantic Council postpones visit to Ukraine – vice prime minister

A visit of the NATO North Atlantic Council to Ukraine previously planned for July has been postponed to the autumn, Ukraine’s Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration Ivanna Klympush-Tsyntsadze has stated. — Ukrinform.

North Atlantic Council of NATO postpones visit to Ukraine to autumn – Deputy PM

The visit of the North Atlantic Council of NATO to Ukraine planned for July has been postponed to the fall, Ukraine’s Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration Ivanna Klympush-Tsintsadze has said.

Ukraine will buy weapons in the United States that the US Army uses

07/09/19 Ukraine will buy modern weapons in the US, which are used by the American Army Ukraine will buy the most up-to-date weapons on the Pentagon, which is in the hands of the US Army, which indicates a new level of trust between Ukraine and the United States. Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Ukraine to the United States Valery Chalyi said on the Voice of America, Ukrinform reported. “We are now talking about the most modern weaponry. Because this kind of armament is supplied through a system of government agreements He added that it was “such an armament that we do not have, and which is actually in the US Army now.” Valery Chalyi noted that one of the key priorities of the embassy’s work is to ensure the defense and security of Ukraine. “This priority has not been pursued anywhere, because Russian aggression continues. Our guys are dying. And every additional opportunity for defense saves life The diplomat explained that work to establish direct procurement of weapons in the United States was launched a long time ago, and last year all legislative amendments were finally approved that made such direct deliveries possible. According to the ambassador, the level of military-technical, military-political cooperation and cooperation between Ukraine and the United States is now an order of magnitude higher than 3-4 years ago: “The fact that we are switching to the possibility of procurement of armaments speaks of trust, which, frankly speaking, in 2014 there was not yet ». According to the diplomat, a new level of trust was made possible thanks to the actions of the Ukrainian side. In particular, it is said that Ukraine was able to prove that supply with the United States would not be a “corrupt component” and that American weapons would not fall into the enemy’s hands. He also said that 92% of all defense and security assistance received by Ukraine came from the USA, and this volume amounts to “several billion”. “This year, only 365 million were allocated to security (US Defense budget – ed.), Including 50 million for lethal weapons only,” the Ambassador specified. “We have huge opportunities open”, – summed up Chaly. Recall that US Chargé d’affaires in Ukraine William Taylor informed that Ukraine was the first to ask for the purchase of military equipment through the US Defense Sales program.

Ukraine buys American weapons

Posted by: Editorials July 09, 2019 Important, News 0 Comments The United States has begun consideration of an official request by Ukraine to purchase US military equipment currently used by the US Army This is stated on the page of the American Embassy on Twitter After long years of negotiations and necessary steps by our state this was the first time possible. William Taylor, US Charge d’Affaires in Ukraine, said that this is the first time Ukraine will buy military equipment through the US Defense Sales program “I am pleased to announce that Ukraine first requested the purchase of military equipment through the sale of the US Department of Defense. We are starting to review this request, “said William Taylor. Ambassador of Ukraine to the USA, Valery Chaly, said on the program of the ChasTime program that it was a question of the weapons that Ukraine had not equipped, which would allow Ukraine to reach a new high-level level. He did not name specific positions on the specification of procurement, but in the near future announced the appearance of decisions of the US Congress on certain purchases for Ukraine. According to Chaly, these purchases will be a new stage in the support of the United States of our country, the transition which has been due to the work of the Embassy of Ukraine in recent years. Previously, there was information about the negotiations of Ukraine on the purchase of American air defense systems. In addition, according to the draft Concept for the Development of Air Forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, the medium-term perspective (currently being developed) is considering the possibility of purchasing American fighters.


Aerial Component of Sea Breeze 2019 Exercise Completed (Video)

Published: July 09, 2019 190709 SiBrees2019 0Aviation section of the “Sea Breeze-2019” (Sea Breeze-2019) international exercises took place at the Kulkankine airfield in Nikolaev region. This is reported by Defense Express with reference to the press service of the Navy of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. 13 aircrafts and 10 helicopters of naval aviation, Air Forces, Army Army of Ukraine and the State Border Guard Service, as well as the US Navy, in particular the Boeing P-8A Poseidon aircraft, were involved in the air component of the training. During several hours of full-time training, parachute landing, spans at extremely low altitudes, evacuation of the victim, as well as imitation of the attack on the ground, etc., were worked out.

Air component of international exercises “Sea Breeze-2019” – YouTube

National information portal “Press” Published on July 9, 2019 Today, at the Kulkankine airfield in Mykolaiv region, the aviation part of the Ukrainian-American study “Sea Breeze – 2019” took place. 13 aircrafts and 10 helicopters of naval aviation, the Air Forces, the Army Army of Ukraine, the State Border Guard Service, and the US Navy, in particular the Poseidon P-8A BPA, were involved in the air component. During several hours of full-time training, parachute landing, spans at extremely low altitudes, evacuation of the victim, as well as imitation of the attack on the ground, etc., were worked out.

In Ochakov, the operation center of the Navy was commissioned by Americans

07/09/19 In Ochakov, the operation center of the Navy was commissioned by Americans In Ochak, US partners set up and put into operation the building of the operational center of the Navy, at the final stage of work on a repair facility for the maintenance of boats. The project to rebuild the Navy’s surface forces infrastructure is being implemented by the United States Department of Defense, the embassy and defense co-operation. – It was built very qualitatively at the level of objects located at the US naval bases, – deputy head of the Naval Staff headquarters on Euro-Atlantic integration Andriy Ryzhenko shared his impressions. US military plans also repair and strengthen the pier. The next project after Ochakov, planned to be implemented by US military engineers – the construction of hostels for the Navy’s Armed Forces Armed Forces in Nikolaev. In Ochakov put into operation the operating center of the Navy built by the Americans In Ochakov put into operation the operating center of the Navy built by the Americans In Ochakov put into operation the operating center of the Navy built by Americans In Ochakovo put into operation the operating center of the Navy built by Americans

The US is building for the Navy: the first objects are ready in Ochakov

Posted by: Editorials July 09, 2019 Naval Force, Important 0 Comments In Ochak, another stage of assistance from US partners was completed in the reconstruction of the infrastructure of grounding of the naval forces of the Navy of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. This is reported by “ArmyInform” US military builders have already constructed and commissioned the building of the operational center, are conducting final works at the construction site for the maintenance of boats. US military plans also repair and strengthen the pier. As the representative of the US Embassy’s Defense Cooperation Division in Ukraine, Lt. Col. Brendon Hill, said, the project is being implemented with the assistance of the US Department of Defense, the embassy and defense co-operation. At present, US military is undertaking a reconstruction of the facilities necessary for the full-fledged exercise of the Sea Breeze series. Hangar for repairing boats of the Navy of the Ukrainian Armed Forces building by the American side Photo: Army Inform Captain 1 rd Andriy Ryzhenko, Deputy Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine on Euro-Atlantic Integration, emphasized that the established infrastructure will be intensively and permanently used by Ukrainian military sailors during their daily activities, and not only during the exercises. Angar to repair boats of the Navy of the Armed Forces of Ukraine built by the American side Photo: Army Inform – Built very qualitatively at the level of objects located at the naval bases of the United States – shared his impressions after the inspection of objects captain 1 rank Andriy Ryzhenko. The next project after Ochakov, planned to be implemented by US military engineers, is the construction of hostels for the Navy’s Armed Forces troops in Mykolaiv. Interior spaces of the Naval Operations Center Photo: Army Inform The construction of a naval operational center for the Naval Forces of Ukraine was started at the Naval Base in Ochakov in July 2017. The work is carried out by US Navy military builders, as well as the American company KVG. The military builders are rotated here, with the work begun by the Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 133, subsequently the 11 Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 11) KVG organizes and maintains works, including delivery of building materials from Ukrainian manufacturers.

The British reconnaissance aircraft traveled to the occupied Crimea

Author: Editorials July 09, 2019 Situation around Crimea, Black Sea Region 0 Comments In the morning, the Bombardier Global Express Sentinel R.1 spy plane flew over the coast of the occupied Crimean peninsula to the British Royal Air Force. This is reported by the Ukrainian Military Portal On airborne trackers, an airplane appeared near the 5th nearby Georgian territorial waters. At 5:20 he approached the Russian city of Novorossiysk, where the naval base of the Black Sea Fleet of Russia was located. By 6:25 Sentinel R.1 made a circle near Novorossiysk and continued the flight already near the coast of the occupied Crimean peninsula: The Sentinel R.1 Flight Route of the Royal Air Force of Great Britain at about 6 am on July 9, 2019 Map: PlaneRadar Continuing the flight near the occupied Sevastopol and the southern coast of the Crimean peninsula, after which at 7:50 he took a course at the base of the airfield. The Sentinel R.1 Flight Route of the Royal Air Force of Great Britain at about 8 am on July 9, 2019 Map: PlaneRadar Raytheon Sentinel R.1 – one of the most advanced electronic intelligence aircraft, they began their operation in 2007. Used in the ASTOR (Airborne Stand-Off Radar) system – designed for full-scale aerial intelligence and blast control. Provide the complex on the aircraft – three operators. Brief technical characteristics of the aircraft: Crew: 5 people Range of flight: 9250 km Practical ceiling: 15,000 m Length: 30.3 m Wing span: 28.5 m Wing area: 94.9 m²

OSCE PA designates Ukrainian sailors captured by Russia as prisoners of war – news politics | UNIAN

The OSCE Parliamentary Assembly has designated Ukrainian sailors captured by the Russian Federation near the Kerch Strait on November 25, 2018, as prisoners of war. The OSCE PA condemns the unprovoked act of armed aggression and unjustifiable and disproportionate use of military force by the Russian Federation against Ukrainian vessels and their crews.

Russian anti-submarine corvette enters Sea of Azov – news politics | UNIAN

Russia has strengthened its grouping in the Sea of Azov with the Yeysk small anti-submarine corvette of the Russian Navy’s Black Sea Fleet. The ship passed a bridge arch near the city of Kerch.

How Stalin destroyed the Crimean Tatar intellectual elite |Euromaidan Press |

Sometimes a single photo can tell us more about a period of history than a multitude of books and documents. The above photo shows us four prominent representatives of the Crimean Tatar intelligentsia of the 1920s and 1930s. In the bottom row, from left to right: philologist, historian, archeologist Osman Akchokrakly, and artist, founder and director of the Bakhchysarai Palace Museum Usein Bodaninsky. In the top row, actor Dzhelal Meinov, next to him, composer, musician Asan Refatov. They met and spoke often, but the main thing that unites them is their tragic last days. These four brilliant men perished during the repressive Stalinist period: three were executed on April 17, 1938 and one was exiled to Siberia.


17 attacks against JFO positions yesterday: no losses among Ukrainian soldiers, two terrorists destroyed

09.07.19 10:25 – 17 attacks against JFO positions yesterday: no losses among Ukrainian soldiers, two terrorists destroyed July 8, armed formations of the Russian Federation violated ceasefire 17 times, using weapons banned under the Minsk agreements seven times. View news.

Ukraine reports 17 enemy attacks in Donbas warzone in past day – news war | UNIAN

Russia’s hybrid military forces on July 8 mounted 17 attacks on Ukrainian army positions in Donbas, eastern Ukraine. There were no Ukraine army casualties over the period under review.

Occupying administrations in Donbas spread fake stories about “NATO fighters” – OSINT group – news war | UNIAN

Information Resistance (IR), a Ukrainian non-governmental project on information security, has said the occupying administrations in Donbas have again started spreading fake stories about “NATO fighters” allegedly spotted in the ranks of the Ukrainian army. Local residents take such “reports” with skepticism.

Zelensky sees no problem with special status of Russian language in Donbas (Video) – news politics | UNIAN

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has said he sees no problem as for the special status of the Russian language in Donbas and local residents should be given an opportunity to speak and fill out documents in Russian. The president said a person can speak any language in Ukraine.

Ukraine is ready to start rebuilding the bridge near Stanytsia Luhanska – Volodymyr Zelenskyy — Official website of the President of Ukraine

Ukraine is ready to start rebuilding the bridge near Stanytsia Luhanska in the near future. This was stated during a briefing on the results of the 21st Ukraine-EU Summit on July 8 by President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

Ukraine to start building bridge in Stanytsya Luhanska in days – president – news portal

Ukraine to start building bridge in Stanytsya Luhanska in days – president. He says that the construction will commence regardless of militants’ actions. Political – news portal. Latest from Ukraine and the world today

French delegation visits Donbas

A French delegation headed by French Ambassador to Ukraine Isabelle Dumont has visited the area of the Joint Forces Operation (JFO) in Donetsk and Luhansk regions and talked to the local population on the contact line, the press service of the Ukrainian Defense Ministry has reported. — Ukrinform.

French delegation visits Donbas. PHOTOS

A French delegation headed by French Ambassador to Ukraine Isabelle Dumont has visited the area of the Joint Forces Operation (JFO) in Donetsk and Luhansk regions and talked to the local population on the contact line. Censor.NET reports citing the Ukrainian Defense Ministry press center. “The French delegation paid a working visit to the JFO area. The parties discussed the real state of civil-military cooperation in the area of the Joint Forces Operation in Donetsk and Luhansk regions,” the report reads. In particular, Colonel Serhii Karpov, head of the unit of civil-military cooperation of the joint command post of the Ukrainian Joint Forces, focused the attention of foreign guests on the specific tasks that servicemen of civil-military cooperation groups are performing on a daily basis. The delegation also visited the Hnutove checkpoint where border guards of the Donetsk detachment from the Joint Forces informed foreign guests about the peculiarities of the work of all entry and exit checkpoints within Donetsk and Luhansk regions and talked about how different categories of citizens cross the contact line. Read more: Kurt Volker: Once Russian forces leave, peace breaks out in Ukraine According to the press service, the delegation expressed grave concern about civilians living in the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine. Dumont, who visits the area not for the first time, stressed that France would continue to support Ukraine on the international stage, as this support is extremely necessary in order to preserve security and uphold international law on the European continent.

Support for Ukraine’s accession to NATO grows by 46% over seven years

Sixty-two percent of Ukrainians support their country’s accession to NATO, whereas 21% are against this idea. — Ukrinform.

Roman Bezsmertnyi returns as Ukraine’s representative in Minsk talks group

09.07.19 17:35 – Roman Bezsmertnyi returns as Ukraine’s representative in Minsk talks group President Volodymyr Zelenskyi assigned the diplomat to act as the country’s envoy in the political subgroup; he replaces Oleksandr Motsyk in this office. View news.

Yevdokymov appointed deputy head of Ukraine’s Foreign Intelligence Service – order

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has appointed Valeriy Yevdokymov Deputy Head of the Foreign Intelligence Service of Ukraine (FIS).

Zelenskiy Says ‘No Expensive Military Parade’ This Year

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy has announced that the country will not hold an “expensive” military parade as it has in years past on the country’s Independence Day, August 24. KYIV — Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy has announced that the country will not hold an “expensive” military parade as it has in years past on the country’s Independence Day, August 24. Instead, the president said in a video address posted to Facebook on July 9, the 300 million hryvnyas ($11.7 million) typically used to showcase the country’s firepower and armed forces will be allocated to servicemen as bonuses. “It’s so pompous and definitely not cheap,” Zelenskiy said in his announcement. “It’s better to allocate this money to our heroes.” Ukraine has held military parades sporadically since 1998. It had stopped the practice between 2010 and 2013 under Moscow-friendly former President Viktor Yanukovych, who fled to Russia during the Euromaidan uprising in 2014. On the watch of his successor, Petro Poroshenko, Ukraine held annual, large-scale parades during which it showcased a reformed military that was expanded while fighting Russia-backed separatists in the country’s eastern Donbas region. The war erupted in April 2014 following Russia’s annexation of Crimea. It grinds on still today, with no end in sight. The United Nations says more than 13,000 people have been killed.

No Independence Day parade to be held this year, Zelensky says – news ukraine | UNIAN

Instead of holding a parade on Ukraine’s Independence Day, the state will allocate UAH 300 million for bonuses to military servicemen, according to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. The money will instead be allocated for bonuses to Ukraine’s military.


UAWire – Detained DPR anti-air commander complicit in killing of Ukrainian troops in Donbas

DPR lieutenant colonel Vladimir Tsemakh, captured by agents of the Security Service of Ukraine SBU and taken to a court in Kyiv, will have to answer not only for his involvement in Russia’s operation to shoot down the Malaysia Airlines Boeing, but also for the murder of Ukrainian soldiers, writes journalist Yuriy Butusov. In a video interview given in 2015, Tsemakh, under the alias “Borisych”, explains how his division took part in the fight for the 43rd checkpoint near Snizhne on August 6, 2014. On that day, a detachment of mercenaries under Tsemakh’s command opened fire on a convoy of the 30th mechanized brigade from a 23 mm ZU-23 cannon. Tsemakh had fought for two years in Afghanistan, as well as in Sloviansk and near Snizhne in May 2014, whereas the soldiers of the 30th brigade, who were traveling in convoy that morning to the 43rd checkpoint, had no experience at the time. The had entered sector D only a week ago, and had no information that the enemy was preparing to attack. For all of them, it was their first combat. After a brief exchange of fire, the Ukrainian troops retreated. Unfortunately, four Ukrainians soldiers remained at the site of the fighting – alive, they were not killed in the crossfire. At 10:30 sergeant Volodymyr Stepaniuk phoned his friend Oleksandr Yaskul and said that he was wounded, and that Yuriy Chechet was lying wounded nearby on the road, and that he intended to help him. At 13:46, however, Volodymyr’s mother received a phone call from his phone and an unfamiliar gruff voice said: “Your son is dead. Don’t mess with us. This is the DPR.” Tsemakh’s troops did not save the wounded Stepaniuk and Chechet, they killed them on the spot. The bodies of the four Ukrainian soldiers were found and recovered by volunteers from the Evacuation-200 mission. Their remains were disfigured.

UAWire – Journalists discover interview with Former DPR anti-air commander on MH17 air disaster

Reporters have found an archived video of Vladimir Tsemakh, former commander of anti-air defense in Sloviansk, in which he was interviewed about the downing of the Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 over eastern Ukraine in 2014. On 29 June this year, Tsemakh was placed under arrest by a court in Kyiv. The news outlet Current Time has found several videos of Tsemakh on a YouTube channel belonging to Russia’s Motherland party, which was founded by Roscosmos CEO Dmitry Rogozin, who is under personal sanctions in connection with the annexation of Crimea and the aggression in the Donbas. The YouTube channel describes Tsemakh as a well-known figure in Novorossiya with combat experience in Afghanistan and one of the first to join the ranks of the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR). In an interview from 2015, Tsemakh cites a theory that was popular on the Russian federal TV channels at the time, namely that the militants had been aiming at a Ukrainian military aircraft. One was supposedly shot down, but the second Ukrainian attack aircraft shot down the passenger liner. This theory was refuted by international investigators a long time ago. In the video, Tsemakh said that they had concealed something. “One word in this quotation was bleeped out by the video’s creators, but if you read his lips, you can guess that it could have been the word ‘Buk’ – an anti-air missile launcher. According to the international investigation, the Malaysian Boeing was shot down by precisely such a Russian Buk,” the journalists write. Tsemakh had been residing in the separatist-controlled city of Snizhne in Ukraine’s Donetsk province. The city lies 18 km from the Russian border. The Ukrainian authorities have accused him of founding a terrorist organization, for which he could face 15 years in prison. Tsemakh’s wife told the press that he had been knocked unconscious by two Ukrainian Security Service (SBU) agents while home alone and then taken into Kyiv-controlled territory. The SBU has not made any official comment on the incident.


Ukraine: Temporarily Occupied Territories Ministry creates manual of terms on Russian aggression against Ukraine – To Inform is to Influence

Russia manipulates the very words of Ukraine in an effort to gain an ‘information advantage’. Simple words, such as using Kiev versus using the Ukrainian version for Ukraine’s capitol. Using Donbass instead of Donbas, for the Eastern, mostly Russian occupied section of Ukraine. By publicizing correct Ukrainian terms versus the Russified terms, Ukraine ensures domestic and external observers and commenters better understand the situation and can more clearly comment. The less Russian propaganda that leaks into global communications, the better for Ukraine. </end editorial>

Temporarily Occupied Territories Ministry creates manual of terms on Russian aggression against Ukraine

Ministry of Temporarily Occupied Territories and IDPs developed a manual “ABC…Armed conflict in terms (guidebook for Ukraine)” with terminology on conflict in Donbas. It was created for mass media, politicians and representatives of the authority as the ministry reported. The ministry explained that the creation of such manual resulted from the fact that the information space “is oversaturated with different, sometimes diametrically opposed concepts, thoughts and estimations”. “This manual is the first substantial work based on the legislation of Ukraine and documents of International Humanitarian law,” the message said. “The more we understand what happens and why, faster we will move towards the solution of the conflict and return of the stable peace and we will be able to explain it to the society simply and correctly,” Minister Vadym Chernysh stated. According to him, this manual will help “everyone who works somehow with information, communicate with society, figure out the difficult terminology of the armed conflict”. The manual is available for download here. Earlier the Ministry of the Temporarily Occupied Territories and IDPs found that the majority of Crimeans come to Ukraine to solve problems with documents; another reason is to receive medical services, while a certain category of people comes for education.

Dutsyk D., Chernish V., Voronina V., Ryuche N., Moroz I., Papernyak O., Kalupah I. | A B C. Armed conflict in terms (Guide for Ukraine) | Ministry for Temporary Occupied Territories and internally displaced persons Kyiv – 2019, 90 p.

PREFACE Thinking and describing the events of the last five years in Ukraine, in the first place – the aggression of the Russian Federation, it is important to carefully select words. The Ukrainian information field in general, as well as the Ukrainian media, are saturated with various concepts, thoughts and assessments, sometimes diametrically opposed. Discussions on these or other terms continue to this day. This complicates understanding of the situation both in the middle of the country and our international partners. It also creates fertile ground for hostile information influences. That is why the Ministry for Temporary Occupied Territories and Internally Displaced Persons of Ukraine decided to initiate the development of a manual that would assist in the work of journalists, public figures, civil servants and even politicians. Ukraine is committed to European values, therefore, we have been guided by international humanitarian law based on respect for human rights. The manual contains an explanation of the terminology database of international humanitarian law, but it also includes a new terminology on armed conflict and Russian military aggression, which is a part of the Ukrainian legislation that has been formed since 2014. In addition, it is extremely important to understand what functions in such conditions are executed by certain authorities and state institutions – this is a separate chapter. We hope that this guide will help anyone who works in one way or another with information communicating with our society to understand the complex terminology of armed conflict. The better we understand what is happening and why – the sooner we move towards conflict resolution and the return of a lasting peace, and we can easily and accurately explain it to society. Vadim Chernish Minister for Temporary Occupied Territories and Internally Displaced Persons of Ukraine _________________

How Russian propaganda outlets manipulate comments dubbing them in Russian |Euromaidan Press |

Imagine that you are a politician or an expert commentator, and a Russian state-controlled TV channel calls you and asks for an interview. You are aware that some Russian media outlets spread disinformation; nevertheless, you agree to the request, thinking that you simply need to formulate your answers very carefully. When the interview is broadcast, you appear on the TV screen saying something quite different from what you said when the interview was recorded.


Ukroboronprom, Skyrizon could take control over Motor Sich company

The Anti-Monopoly Committee of Ukraine has been considering the case about Skyrizon Aircraft Holdings Limited (British Virgin Islands) and Ukraine’s state concern Motor Sich (Zaporizhya, southeastern Ukraine) taking control over Motor Sich company. The press office of the Committee reported that on July 9. The Committee also looks into Skyrizon’s actions, as it bought the shares of Granum Corporation (Panama), Likatron Enterprises Limited (Cyprus) and Reckoner Investment Holdings Limited (Cyprus), which allows an increase by 50 percent of votes in the managing bodies of this company.

Danyliuk meets with NATO delegation to discuss European integration of Ukraine

Secretary of Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council (NSDC) Oleksandr Danyliuk held a meeting with a NATO delegation led by Head of the NATO Representation to Ukraine Alexander Vinnikov, according to the NSDC’s press service. — Ukrinform.

Ukraine’s NSDC secretary meets U.S. defense officials to discuss cooperation – news politics | UNIAN

Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine, Oleksandr Danyluk, met with a delegation of the United States Department of Defense, chaired by Catherine Sendak, Director for the Balkan, Caucasus and Black Sea Region of the Office of the U.S. Principal Under Secretary of Defense for Policy. The parties agreed that the developments in the Black Sea area are posing a threat to the security of not only Ukraine but also the entire Euro-Atlantic region. Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine, Oleksandr Danyluk, met with a delegation of the United States Department of Defense, chaired by Catherine Sendak, Director for the Balkan, Caucasus and Black Sea Region of the Office of the U.S. Principal Under Secretary of Defense for Policy. “During the meeting, the parties discussed the prospects for cooperation between Ukraine and the United States in the areas of security and defense, particularly in the development of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, cybersecurity, logistics, conducting a comprehensive review of the security sector and preparing strategic planning documents in the field,” the NSDC press service reported.

NSDC secretary meets with delegation of U.S. Department of Defense

Secretary of Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council (NSDC) Oleksandr Danyliuk met with a delegation of the United States Department of Defense under the chairmanship of Catherine Sendak, Deputy Director of the U.S. Department of Defense for the Balkans, Caucasus and Black Sea region, according to the NSDC’s press service. — Ukrinform.

Zelensky terminates powers of Ukroboronprom’s supervisory board member Zgurovsky, appoints Arakhamia, Zahorodniuk supervisory board members

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has terminated powers of member of the supervisory board of the Ukroboronprom state concern Mykhailo Zgurovsky and appointed David Arakhamia, Andriy Zahorodniuk members of the concern’s supervisory board.


It is impossible to beg peace from an aggressor that is stronger than you, it can only be won, – Smeshko. VIDEO

The leader of the Strength and Honor Party, Igor Smeshko, spoke about the significance of the past presidential elections for Ukraine, the priorities, ideology and the Strength and Honor party list, relations with Petro Poroshenko and Vladimir Zelensky, how it is necessary to reform intelligence structures, what are the main threats in front of the state, as well as its vision of ending the war in the Donbas. See this in the new video blog of Yury Butusov “Censor Interview” on the Censor channel. NO. 00:21 Presidential Election 2019 – the third “Maidan” of Ukrainian society 1:45 On the relationship with Vladimir Zelensky 2:13 Contacts with the election headquarters of presidential candidates before the election 3:37 Proposals from Poroshenko before the second round of presidential elections 3:55 Priorities and ideology of the party “Strength and Honor”. The advice to Zelensky, how not to let the retinue beat the king. 7:40 What kind of people should the president be appointed to power 12:02 Will the new parliament be a source of change in the country? Question of war 16:01 Strategy for Peace 20:00 What should the army and special services do in the Donbass 25:50 Reform of intelligence agencies and special services of Ukraine 30:00 Poroshenko’s interaction with intelligence agencies. The issue of creating an intelligence committee 37:55 Party list “Strength and Honor” 43:05 The first appointments of President Vladimir Zelensky to the secret services: the head of the Foreign Intelligence Service of Ukraine, Vladislav Bukharev, interim SBU Ivan Bakanov, and others 50:02 Russia’s influence on Ukraine, protection of media space from the Russian Federation 52:57 Threats to the state Recall Smeshko headed the Security Service of Ukraine in 2003-2005. From October 2014 to March 2015, he headed the Intelligence Committee under the President of Ukraine. In the first round of the presidential election, Igor Smeshko became a real sensation, gaining a little more than 6% of the vote (sixth place).

What’s behind the return of pro-Russian politicians to Ukraine? |Euromaidan Press |

After Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s inauguration as the president of Ukraine, some officials from the era of exiled ex-president Yanukovych era came back to Ukraine or dared to apply as candidates for people’s deputies even though they had been living in Russia since 2014. This pro-Russian revanche provoked strong resistance from both politicians and civil activists. On 2 June, protesters successfully rallied against the registration of two candidates as people’s deputies who had been openly against the Euromaidan and fled to Russia. One more rally was staged on 4 June to prevent the possible cancellation of the law on lustration by the Constitutional Court of Ukraine. The pro-Russian reversal has not been that successful and powerful so far, but who is responsible for it and what is the role of new president Volodymyr Zelenskyy?

Over 60% of Ukrainians support accession to NATO – poll – news ukraine | UNIAN

Director of the Center of Strategic Development of Areas Andriy Orlov has said Ukraine’s accession to NATO is supported by 62% of citizens. The number of supporters of Ukraine’s accession to NATO has increased by 46% since 2012.

69% Ukrainians support accession to EU – survey

09.07.19 12:48 – 69% Ukrainians support accession to EU – survey Some 69% of Ukrainians have said they support Ukraine’s accession to the European Union, while 13% are against. View news.

Volodymyr Zelenskyy: Election of a new parliament will give us even more opportunities to suppress corruption — Official website of the President of Ukraine

Already in the near future, Ukraine will ask the EU countries not to give us money to fight corruption, but to facilitate the extradition of top corrupt officials – fugitives. This was stated by President Volodymyr Zelenskyy during a press conference on the results of the 21st Ukraine-EU Summit on July 8 in Kyiv.

Zelensky signs decree to improve access to mobile web throughout Ukraine

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has approved measures to improve access to mobile Internet throughout the country. — Ukrinform.

Ukraine’s anti-graft agency announces charges against one minister, several governors – news politics | UNIAN

Chief of the Specialized Anti-corruption Prosecutor’s Office (SAPO) Nazar Kholodnytsky has said his agency has finalized charges against one of the ministers and continues work to prepare charges against some governors. Charge papers will be handed over to the minister.

GPU sent to the Office of the President a repeated request for the statements of Mendel. DOCUMENT | Цензор.НЕТ

Prosecutor General Yury Lutsenko sent a second request to the Presidential Office in connection with a statement by the Presidential Spokesperson Yulia Mendel that Ukrainian servicemen were shooting at civilian targets in eastern Ukraine. The corresponding message is posted on the Prosecutor General’s Facebook page, informs Censor. NO. “On July 9, 2019, the Prosecutor General’s Office reiterated the inquiry of the investigator in the criminal proceedings of 09/29/2014 about the refutation or confirmation of public statements by the press secretary of the President of Ukraine that the servicemen of the Armed Forces of Ukraine allow cases of shelling of civilian objects in eastern Ukraine” Prosecutor General’s Office. The repeated request signed by Prosecutor General Yury Lutsenko is addressed to the Deputy Head of the Office of the President Ruslan Ryaboshapke.

Zelensky orders government to synchronize Ukraine, neighbors’ customs databases before year-end – news economics | UNIAN

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky signed a decree instructing the government to take measures to synchronize the databases of Ukrainian customs and those of the relevant authorities of the neighboring countries by the end of this year. This would be an important element in the fight against smuggling.

Ukrainians appreciate coding basics as advantage – survey – news portal

Ukrainians appreciate coding basics as advantage – survey. Coding has become not just a popular but mandatory school subject in many countries of the world. Political – news portal. Latest from Ukraine and the world today


Protest held outside pro-Russian TV channel in Kyiv – news portal

Protest held outside pro-Russian TV channel in Kyiv. The channel said that it would cancel a planned TV link with Russia. Political – news portal. Latest from Ukraine and the world today

NewsOne cancels TV link with pro-Russian channel – news portal

NewsOne cancels TV link with pro-Russian channel. It is concerned about the risk of an attack. Political – news portal. Latest from Ukraine and the world today

SBU, PGO have info that NewsOne ultimate beneficiaries related to Russia’s Promsvyazbank

One of the beneficiaries of the Ukrainian TV Channel NewsOne is the co-owner of Russia’s Promsvyazbank, through which the Kremlin finances the war against Ukraine, Prosecutor General of Ukraine Yuriy Lutsenko has reported.

UAWire – Ukrainian TV channel accused of high treason after planning teleconference with Russia

The Prosecutor General’s Office (PGO) in Kyiv has filed a criminal case against the Ukrainian TV channel NewsOne, which planned to hold a teleconference with Russian colleagues who are under sanctions. The channel’s management is accused of “attempting to commit high treason by providing information support to subversive activity against Ukraine,” wrote Prosecutor General Yuriy Lutsenko on Monday, 8 July, on Facebook. Lutsenko noted that the people involved in the plan to hold a teleconference with the sanctioned Russia 1 channel have been taken in for questioning. This concerns the owner of the channel and the presenters. The Prosecutor General also noted that preparations are being made to seize the TV company’s assets. About an hour later, Lutsenko revealed in a new Facebook post that the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) and the PGO had obtained information about the owners of NewsOne. “One and the same physical entity is the director of the Cypriot legal companies that are the beneficial owners of the Ukrainian TV channel NewsOne and of Russian JSC Promsvyazbank,” he wrote, noting that the Russian bank finances Russia’s defense orders. Lutsenko noted that the National Security and Defense Council (NSDC) of Ukraine will be convened in connection with this information. He threatened to revoke the channel’s license and ban it from utilizing Ukraine’s radio frequency resources. Earlier that day, the idea of holding a teleconference between Moscow and Kyiv was sharply criticized by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. “The announced teleconference is just a cheap but dangerous PR operation ahead of elections whose goal is to divide us again,” he stressed in an address to the citizens of Ukraine. According to him, one camp of politicians is calling for the two fraternal nations to forget their grievances, and the other is trying to cause outrage and, “masquerading as patriotism, to win points in the election’. Next, “they will start to smash and burn the TV channel”, which will play into the hand of Russian propaganda, Zelensky believes. Shortly after Zelensky’s statement, the TV channel, which is linked to Putin’s close associate Viktor Medvedchuk, called off the teleconference with Russia 1. “In connection with the information campaign against our journalists, the threat of an attack on the channel and the use of its name in the election campaigns of a number of Ukrainian parties, we have been forced to cease preparation for the ‘Need to talk’ TV marathon,” NewsOne said in a statement. Previously NewsOne had said that the planned teleconference with Russia 1, announced by Russian Vesti Nedeli presenter Dmitry Kiselyov, would be “the first apolitical teleconference between people from Ukraine and Russia”. In this regard, the Ukrainian TV channel mentioned the teleconferences between the Soviet Union and the USA in the 1980s that helped to establish dialog between the two nations.


Law enforcement, judiciary should react to Filaret’s interview with Russian propaganda TV – Razumkov – news politics | UNIAN

Both the SBU security service and Ukrainian courts should react to an interview honorary patriarch of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine, Filaret, recently gave Russian propagandists in Kyiv, believes Dmytro Razumkov, chairman of the Servant of the People Party, who spoke at a briefing Monday, according to an UNIAN correspondent. It’s not politicians who must respond to sabotage by foreign propagandists disguised as media outlets but the Security Service and the courts. Both the SBU security service and Ukrainian courts should react to an interview honorary patriarch of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine, Filaret, recently gave Russian propagandists in Kyiv, believes Dmytro Razumkov, chairman of the Servant of the People Party, who spoke at a briefing Monday, according to an UNIAN correspondent. Razumkov noted that the Security Service should provide an assessment of the very presence of Russian propagandists in Ukraine: “It would be right if it’s not politicians who comment on this but rather the relevant authorities and the court who are to take decisions. Moreover, I don’t care if it is a journalist from Russia or from another state – if they work against the interests of Ukraine, the reaction of the Security Service of Ukraine, law enforcement, and the court must be in line the law and absolutely competent.” He added that his personal position is that a number of TV channels are not “media” but merely one of the types of weapons applied in a hybrid war. As UNIAN reported, in an interview with the Russian propaganda TV channel, the honorary patriarch, who is trying to gain actual authority over Ukraine’s church said that the head of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine and ex-president Petro Poroshenko “betrayed” him, and recalled that he had allegedly been promised powers in the new church that received a tomos of autocephaly from Constantinople. Read alsoNew Ukrainian church punishes Filaret, taking from “patriarch” Kyiv diocese, temples He also claimed that the church head, Metropolitan Epifaniy, was supposed to deal with the OCU’s foreign affairs exclusively. Russian journalists, in turn, claimed in their report the emergence of a new “religious schism” in Ukraine and branded the tomos of autocephaly a “political project”.


Top Russian Priest In Hot Water For Saying Men Smarter Than Women

A Moscow-based newspaper has published an open letter challenging statements derogatory to women’s intelligence made by a top official in the Russian Orthodox Church.