Information operations · Information Warfare · Russia · Ukraine

Ukraine / Russia Ad Hoc Media Update (234)


Anonymous expert compilation, analysis, and reporting.

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Muscovy decides to play the aerial baiting game in Asia, flying an A-50 AWACS twice into the RoKAF ADIZ and eliciting several hundred rounds of 20mm warning shots. Muscovy as always denies, pleads innocence and alleges the RoKAF  “conducted unprofessional maneuvers, crossing the course of the Russian aircraft and jeopardizing their safety.” Protests from Seoul and Tokyo.

Ten depressing reports from Russia. NATO update

Ukraine IR update, many congratulations on election win. Hostage / Crimea updates

Donbas update – latest ceasefire appears to be holding, unclear for how long, Russia deploys snipers to destroy OSCE surveillance cameras. Two more surplus USCG cutters to go to Ukraine. More Neptun ASCM trials

Over 30 reports on election – most recent tally with over 95% counted stands at “Servant of the People – 43.13% of votes, Opposition Platform – For Life – 13.06%, Batkivschyna – 8.18%, European Solidarity – 8.12%, Holos – 5,84%” giving Ze the largest number of seats in Ukrainian history. Tymoshenko and Poroshenko neck to neck. Economy reports.

ROC update – the fusion of state with church is driving membership down to unprecedented levels.


Russian aircraft violates S. Korea’s airspace above East Sea twice

A Russian warplane violated South Korea’s airspace above the East Sea twice Tuesday, prompting the Air Force to fire warning shots in the first such airspace violation by a foreign airplane ever, military officers here said.The Russian A-50 early warning and control aircraft trespassed in the territorial sky above the East Sea near South Korea’s easternmost islets of Dokdo earlier in the day for two brief periods in …

(3rd LD) Russian aircraft violates S. Korea’s airspace above East Sea twice | Yonhap News Agency

(ATTN: ADDS more info in 5-6, last paras, photo) SEOUL, July 23 (Yonhap) — A Russian wa…

(6th LD) Russian aircraft violates S. Korea’s airspace above East Sea twice | Yonhap News Agency

(ATTN: UPDATES with reports of a statement from Russian defense ministry regarding a joint…

Russian MoD Says South Korean Fighters’ Maneuvers Threatened Safety of Russian Bombers – Sputnik International

The South Korean Joint Chiefs of Staff claimed earlier in the day that a Russian aircraft had violated the borders of the South Korean airspace twice over the Sea of Japan.

Russian Defense Ministry denies border violations during flights over Sea of Japan – Military & Defense – TASS

MOSCOW, July 23. /TASS/. Two Russian Tu-95MS strategic bombers did not violate other countries’ borders during their scheduled flight over neutral waters of the Sea of Japan, the Russian Defense Ministry reported on Tuesday. “On July 23, 2019, two Tu-95MS strategic bombers of the Russian Aerospace Forces were performing a scheduled flight in the airspace over neutral waters of the Sea of Japan,” the ministry noted. The Defense Ministry stressed that the planes did not violate other counties’ borders. “According to flight data, the Tu-95MS aircraft did not deviate from the planned route in accordance with international regulations, flying more than 25 km away from Dokdo (Takeshima) islands without violating South Korea’s airspace,” it said. The ministry said that two South Korean F-16s approached the Russian bombers near the Liancourt Rocks and “conducted unprofessional maneuvers, crossing the course of the Russian aircraft and jeopardizing their safety.” The Russian defense agency also pointed out that “The South Korean pilots did not establish communications with the crews of Tu-95MS, fired flares and then the F-16s conducted another maneuver, retreating away from the Russian planes.” The Russian Defense Ministry has refuted reports on warning shots fired by South Korea’s F-16 fighter jets at Russia’s Tu-95MS strategic bombers. “No warning shots were fired by South Korea’s fighter jets,” the Defense Minsitry said, adding that, “if the Russian pilots felt a security threat, the response would follow quickly.” The ministry also emphasized that “it is not the first time that South Korean pilots have unsuccessfully tried to disrupt the Russian aviation’s maneuvers over the neutral waters of the Sea of Japan, citing a self-imposed “air defense identification zone”.” However, these zones are not envisioned by the international rules and, therefore, are not recognized by Russia, which has been repeatedly communicated to the South Korean side through various channels.”

Russia Says It Flew First Long-Range Air Patrol with China in Asia-Pacific – The Moscow Times

Russia’s Defense Ministry said on Tuesday it had conducted its first joint long-range air patrol with China in the Asia-Pacific region and that it had not been aimed at another country. news S. Korea Fires Hundreds of Warning Shots at Russian Military Plane Read more The ministry made the statement after South Korea accused a Russian military aircraft of violating its air space earlier on Tuesday and fired warning shots at it in an incident that also involved Chinese planes. The Russian Defense Ministry said that Russia and China’s air forces had not violated the air space of any other countries, however.

Russian-Chinese Air Patrol in Asia-Pacific Draws Fire from S.Korean Jets – The Moscow Times

Russia carried out what it said was its first long-range joint air patrol in the Asia-Pacific region with China on Tuesday, a mission that triggered hundreds of warning shots, according to South Korean officials, and a strong protest from Japan. The flight by two Russian Tu-95 strategic bombers and two Chinese H-6 bombers, backed up according to Korean and Japanese officials by a Russian A-50 early warning plane, marks a notable ramping-up of military cooperation between Beijing and Moscow. That is something likely to worry politicians from Washington to Tokyo and could complicate relations and raise tension in a region that has for years been overshadowed by hostility between the United States and North Korea. While troops and naval ships from Russia and China have taken part in joint war games before, they have not, according to Russia’s Ministry of Defense, conducted such air patrols in the Asia-Pacific region together until Tuesday. “The joint patrol was carried out with the aim of deepening Russian-Chinese relations within our all-encompassing partnership, of further increasing cooperation between our armed forces, and of perfecting their capabilities to carry out joint actions and of strengthening global strategic security,” the ministry said in a statement. Seoul and Tokyo, who both scrambled jets to intercept the Russo-Chinese mission, accused Russia and China of violating their airspaces, an allegation Moscow and Beijing denied. South Korean warplanes fired hundreds of warning shots towards the Russian A-50 military aircraft, defense officials in Seoul said, saying it had entered South Korean airspace. It was the first time a Russian military aircraft had violated South Korean airspace, an official at the South Korean Ministry of National Defense said in Seoul.

Russian, Chinese bombers carry out first joint patrol in Asia-Pacific region — top brass – Military & Defense – TASS

The Russian Defense Ministry claimed the joint flights were not directed against third countries

Tokyo lodges protest with Seoul, Moscow over jet incident – World – TASS

Fighter jets have been scrambled to intercept a Russian warplane over the Liancourt Rocks, disputed by Tokyo and Seoul

South Korea Says Its Air Force Fired Warning Shots At Russian Military Jet

South Korean jets fired two warning shots at a Russian military aircraft for intruding into South Korea’s airspace above the East Sea on July 23, Reuters reported citing the Ministry of National …

South Korea fires warning shots at Russian military aircraft – BBC News

Seoul says it scrambled jets and fired hundreds of rounds after a military plane twice violated its airspace.

South Korean, Russian warplanes face-off in rare mid-air confrontation – CNN

South Korean fighter jets fired more than 300 warning shots at a Russian military aircraft that had violated the country’s airspace Tuesday, defense officials said, in an account furiously disputed by Moscow.

South Korea says it fired hundreds of warning shots at Russia warplanes | Fox News

South Korean defense officials on Tuesday said Seoul launched fighter jets in response to “multiple” Russian military planes that entered into the country’s airspace.

Warning Shots From South Korea as Russia, China Launch Patrol – Bloomberg

South Korean warplanes fired hundreds of warning shots, accusing a Russian reconnaissance plane of violating its airspace as China and Russia flew nuclear-capable bombers nearby in their first-ever joint air patrol.

South Korea fires warning shots at Russian military planes that entered the country’s airspace  | Daily Mail Online

South Korea says the country fired warning shots after Russian military planes entered South Korean airspace on Tuesday.

South Korean fighter jets fired warning shots at Russian aircraft | Daily Mail Online

South Korean officials said that two Russian and two Chinese bombers entered the country’s airspace early on Tuesday, prompting them to scramble fighter jets.

Three Russian Planes Enter S. Korean Airspace, Receive 360 Warning Shots, Which Russia Denies – To Inform is to Influence

Two Russian Tu-95 bombers and one A-50 airborne AWACS plane entered South Korean airspace, twice, and received 360 rounds of warning shots. South Korea fires 360 warning shots at intruding Russian military aircraft The Washington Post06:00 Russia denied that South Korea fired any warning rounds. S. Korea’s claim on warning shot firings disputed by Russia…

Japan scrambles fighters to intercept Russian and Chinese planes – Reuters

Japan’s military scrambled fighter aircraft to intercept Russian and Chinese planes, it said on Tuesday, including an observation jet at which South Korean forces fired warning shots after it entered airspace over an island claimed by both Seoul and Tokyo.

Warning Shots Fired At Russian A-50 AEW Aircraft That Allegedly Violated South Korea’s Airspace – The Aviationist

Pretty tense “close encounter” between Russian Air Force and ROKAF (Republic Of Korea Air Force) aircraft early today. A Russian Air Force A-50 Mainstay Airborne Early Warning aircraft violated South Korea’s airspace above the East Sea twice on Jul. 23, 2019 prompting the ROKAF jets scrambled to intercept the intruder to fire around 280 warning shots, according to officers from the South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS). The incident occurred in the sky above the East Sea near South Korea’s easternmost islets of Dokdo, an island that is occupied by South Korea and also claimed by Japan, which calls it Takeshima and the violation marks the first time a foreign aircraft violated Korea’s territorial sky and South Korea fired warning shots in response. Earlier on the same day, two Russian Tu-95 bombers and two Chinese H-6 bombers had entered South Korea’s air defense identification zone (KADIZ). Noteworthy, the two Russian Bears flew through the KADIZ without prior notification again in the afternoon. Russia denied violating any airspace and accused South Korean pilots of being reckless. Pay attention: there’s a significant difference between territorial sky and ADIZ.

ROKAF F-15 and F-16 Fighter Jets Fire more than 300 Warning Shots at Russian A-50 AEW&C Aircraft – The Aviation Geek Club

On Jul. 23, 2019 warplanes from four countries faced off in a chaotic and unprecedented confrontation above a small, disputed island off the coast of South Korea and Japan. As reported by CNN, South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff issued a statement claiming they that after a Russian Beriev A-50 airborne early warning and control (AEW&C) aircraft had twice violated the country’s airspace, Republic of Korea Air Force (ROKAF) fighters had fired more than 300 warning shots at it, the first such incident between the countries. Moscow furiously denied Seoul’s account of the encounter, claiming that South Korean military jets had dangerously intercepted two of its bombers during a planned flight over neutral waters. But in a statement Tuesday afternoon, Japan’s Ministry of Defense backed up South Korea’s claims, saying the A-50 had flown over the islands and that Tokyo had scrambled fighters to intercept. Moreover, both South Korea and Japan said that two Chinese H-6 bombers had joined the Russian military aircraft on sorties through the region as well. The confrontation took place over disputed islands in the East Sea, also known as the Sea of Japan, in the morning of Jul. 23. The two, small islands, known to the Koreans as Dokdo and to the Japanese as Takeshima, are claimed by both countries. The reason that sparked the confrontation between the warplanes remains unknown, but analysts said the mission may have been designed by Russia to draw out South Korean and Japanese aircraft for intelligence gathering purposes.

South Korean jets intercept Russian aircraft, fire warning shots – Defence Blog

South Korean fighter jets intercepted and fired warning shots at Russian military aircraft Tuesday after it violated the country’s airspace, the country’s defense officials said. Yonhap News Agency, quoting officers from the Joint Chiefs of Staff, reported the Russian bomber violated the country’s airspace above the East Sea near South Korea’s easternmost islets of Dokdo earlier in the day in a three-minute flight twice each in breach of international treaties. “It is unprecedented for a Russian warplane to violate South Korean airspace, though their violation of Korea’s air defense identification zone (KADIZ) has occurred occasionally,” said officers. The Russian plane did not return fire in either incident, the official said. Officials said South Korean F-15K and F-16K fighter jets were scrambled to intercept the plane and fired flares after sending a message to the aircraft. “The South Korean military took tactical action including dropping flares and firing a warning shot,” a defence ministry statement said. It was the first time a Russian military plane violated South Korean airspace, according to South Korean officials. Carl Schuster, a former director of operations at the United States’ Pacific Command’s Joint Intelligence Center told CNN reporters that the shooting a warning shot in the air was “very very serious” and “very, very rare.” Schuster said that the fact shots were fired meant Seoul had viewed the violation as a serious and deliberate act, adding he couldn’t explain why the Russian plane would come back again after the first warni

Russian military aircraft flies over South Korea

A Russian military aircraft violated South Korea’s airspace over the Sea of Japan. Yonhap reports with reference to the Defense Ministry. According to the agency, the incident occurred on Tuesday morning. The Russian bomber flew twice in the area of the Liancourt Islands. Both flights lasted about three minutes. It is noted that South Korean military planes were raised in the sky, firing warning shots.

Russian sailors killed in submarine disaster reportedly could have survived, if they’d abandoned their firefight sooner — Meduza

The 14 sailors who died in a submarine fire earlier this month in the Barents Sea could have survived, if they’d abandoned ship sooner, but they stayed behind to fight the blaze, sources told the newspaper Kommersant. According to Russian defense officials, the officers died trying to put out a fire in the battery compartment of a deep-water research ship that was performing bathymetric measurements.

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Moscow Talk about 2024 Ever More Resembles Discussions at End of Soviet Times, Kolesnikov Says

Paul Goble Staunton, July 20 – “The latest news about 2024” – that is, about the possibility of continuity and succession in Russia – “ever more clearly recalls the last years of the Soviet Union,” Andrey Kolesnikov says, when everyone was talking about shifting power and maintaining control. But now as then, this talk is sparking fears in the elites. The Moscow Carnegie Center scholar says that as a result, many of the proposals are more about preventing problems than about solving them, something that may put off the day of reckoning but does not mean it will not come (forbes.ru/obshchestvo/380097-elbasy-vseya-rusi-kto-stoit-za-novostyami-o-sohranenii-vlasti-putina-posle-2024). “The nervousness of the elites is becoming ever more obvious, Kolesnikov continues, especially because current economic arrangements aren’t working and “in a state capitalist system, there are no sources of development other than the government.” And that government is only able to take more from the population and give to its immediate friends. “On such a model,” the analyst suggests, “you won’t go far, and from this arises the agitation of the financial and economic elites.” But they aren’t the only ones agitated. The siloviki establishment is upset by the Kremlin’s decision to punish it for its actions in the Golunov case, and the official party of power knows that it has become toxic. Everyone in the political system is fleeing from it as from “an island where leprosy has broken out.” And in this situation, Kolesnikov says, “everyone with hope is looking toward the Kremlin” but not getting any signals about how things might change for the better. The tsar remains calm and behaves as anything but “a lame duck,” however much some are ready to proclaim him one. Those at the top of the Russian system want Putin to remain in power as do many “young (and comparatively young) technocrats who have never had any other boss, and all these ‘leaders of Russia’ are focused exclusively on one leader,” an entirely normal pattern for autocratic regimes whose leaders are aging and may leave the scene unexpectedly. “The elites have no basis – in any case up to now – to suppose that Putin will leave,” the Moscow Carnegie Center researcher says; and that in turn means that “the preparation for elections or for something that will replace them inevitably is beginning now five years before the transition year.” Parliamentary elections are only two years away, and they are taking place at a time when “the imitation party system with its imitation opposition” that has existed since 2014 is “in fact withering away” and that the regime is making no effort to create alternative political parties in the way that it did in the past. All this is focusing attention on whether Russia will follow the Kazakhstan path in which the real leader will not be the formal one or the Armenian one in which executive power will shift from the president to the prime minister. Both are problematic, but the second is potentially explosive in Russia, the analyst suggests. For Russia, he argues, “parliamentary reform” – the Armenian variant – “makes sense only if some kind of variant with the immediate departure [of the leader] or elections is in place on some kind of extraordinary basis.” Otherwise it will spark protests and may fail utterly to maintain continuity. “But something must work,” Kolesnikov says. Otherwise there is a risk as at the end of Soviet times, that the entire house of cards could collapse. Thus, all the talk about “preventive measures” rather than about “cures.”

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Widespread View that Putin Regime is Degrading while Russian Civil Society is Strengthening is Wrong, Pavlova Says

Paul Goble Staunton, July 20 – The Russian blogosphere almost unanimously has suggested that the fight over the registration of candidates for the Moscow city council show that “the powers that be are archaic and degrading” while “society in contrast is evolving,” something the writers say “the powers don’t understand” and are in fact “in a state of panic,” Irina Pavlova says. But those judgments are completely wrong, the US-based Russian historian says. In her view, it is the opposition which “doesn’t understand with what kind of power it is dealing while the powers know perfectly well how to manipulate it” far beyond the capacity of the opposition to cope (ivpavlova.blogspot.com/2019/07/blog-post_20.html). What is taking place in Moscow now brings to mind the 2011 election campaign for the Duma, Pavlova says, when the Kremlin quickly brought to heel what seemed to be an overwhelming wave of protest against the Putin regime. Since that time, she argues, the Kremlin’s political technology skills have only grown. This is especially the case with regard to manipulating the rising generation in ways that direct the “anti-powers” energy of the young into directions that ultimately work to the benefit of the powers that be rather than representing any threat to them in ways that recall how Stalin used elections in the late 1930s. On the one hand, since 2012, the Kremlin’s political technologies have focused their attention on the young, successfully promoting among their ranks the idea that “the future of the country belongs to them, that civil society is developing, modernizing, and influencing the powers that be forcing it to change course.” That leads the young to want to participate “in the modernization of the existing regime” rather than seek to overthrow it, Pavlova suggests. And on the other, the current powers that be by constantly shifting course, now advancing, now retreating keeps young people off balance. When it looks as if the powers are going to shut down all protests, they allow a large one; and when it looks like protests are becoming too widespread, the powers that be shut them down. That is, the Kremlin like its Soviet predecessors acts in ways that those opposed to it cannot easily take advantage of because as soon as they mobilize on the basis of one set of facts, the Kremlin provides them with a different set – and the opposition confused has to begin all over again rather than build on any successes it may have had. Such a tactic, Pavlova continues, “works not only to change the electoral technologies in the country but also to create in the eyes of the world community the illusion of the existence of a civil society capable of influencing the regime.” Those who accept that lie thus conclude that they need not seek to replace Putin because Russian civil society will cause him to evolve. Meanwhile, while Russian opposition groups and the West are impressed by the size of the meeting about election registrations in Moscow, the Putin regime has stepped up its application of the criminal code to include not only Articles 280 and 282 but also and more seriously Article 275. That article deals with state treason, a category that given the current regime’s reading of this paragraph could be used against “young Russians above all and also against others who are in contact with foreigners.” That the Kremlin has this intention is suggested by Nikolay Patrushev’s remark that foreign special services and NGOs are seeking to subvert Russian youth. Pavlova performs an invaluable service by providing this contrarian position. She has proved right more often than wrong in the past; and at the very least, her arguments represent a challenge to the prevailing optimism among the Russian commentariat and should be answered rather than dismissed.

Window on Eurasia — New Series: A Russian National Revolution Will Succeed Only if There is More than One Russia, Sidorov Says

Paul Goble Staunton, July 19 – Not every people becomes a nation either because its origins are too linked to an imperial state which opposes the completion of a national revolution by its largest ethnic component or because it lacks the opportunity to pursue the kind of great goal for itself rather than for others that sets it unifies its members, Vadim Sidorov says. Russians today suffer from both and are not yet a nation. Instead, the Russian nationalist commentator says, they remain a people so tightly intertwined with an imperial state project that they have been effectively precluded from becoming a nation with its own goals for itself (harunsidorov.info/2019/07/10/Незавершенная-революция-24-За-завершен/ reposted at region.expert/national_revolution/). The question, posed most clearly by General Andrey Vlasov in 1945 Sidorov says in a chapter of his new book, The Uncompleted Revolution, is whether they can complete “the national revolution” that many of the peoples of the Russian Empire began in February 1917 but that the ethnic Russians saw deflected into a neo-imperial project by the Bolsheviks. Drawing on the works of two Russian nationalist theorist, the late Petr Khomyakov and Aleksey Shiropayev, Sidorov argues that Russians can become a nation only if they detach themselves from the empire, something they can do only by promoting the development of multiple Russias. Any effort to keep Russia in one piece, he says, will subvert the possibility of the completion of the national revolution by reinforcing rather than ending the ways in which the imperialism of the Russian state and the denial by that state of any possibility for Russians to advance from a people to a nation. Put in simplest terms, if Russians seek to complete their national revolution within a single state whatever its borders as most so-called Russian nationalists want, they will remain a people subordinate to and controlled by an imperial state. Only by being open the emergence of multiple Russian states, Sidorov says, can the Russians hope to become a nation. According to the analyst, “the world is entering a post-national era, and the Russians also will have to take part in it.” But the question is will they do so as a nation or as a people which has not yet gone through the national stage of development. The danger of that, Sidorov suggests, is still very real. And the consequences could be just as disastrous as the Bolshevik efforts to “bypass capitalism and bourgeois democracy by jumping immediately to socialism.” How that ended, Sidorov says, is of course well-known. Bypassing the national stage of development would be equally fateful. In 1917, Sidorov argues, “the essentially Russian revolution did not want to take the form of a national revolution and continued as an imperial revolution, the result of which became the restoration of the empire on a new ideocratic basis” and the blocking of any moves by Russians to become a genuine nation. That might have been avoided, he continues, because during the Russian civil war, a variety of Russians spontaneously arose in various parts of the country. But the Bolsheviks suppressed them, aided by the view that either “’the entire’ Russian people’ had to go through that revolution as one whole or it would not pass through it at all. Such a view remained unchallenged throughout the Soviet period even among those who classed themselves as anti-Soviets and reinforced the links between the Russian people and the imperial state. But beginning in the 1990s, it was challenged by a growing chorus of writers led by Khomyakov and Shiropayev. As Khomyakov pointed out, “Russian nationalists want to combine things that cannot be combined by building a nation state on an imperial basis.” The result of that is that the Russians “remain an imperial quasi nation, with the corresponding mental maps and myths” but without a mobilizing agenda of their own. What that means, the late analyst says, is that any resolution of “the Russian question” is possible only if it is approached from beyond the usual boundaries of nationalism as the nationalists understand it and instead recognizes that the necessary but insufficient condition is for Russians to “free themselves from the empire.” “It isn’t enough to recognize that Russian statehood is an imperial survival of the past, the archaic heritage of the tsars, an historical relic,” Khomyakov argued. “What is important to understand that ‘Russianness’ is the product of the empire, one of its unofficial or semi-official (at the level of the well-known Stalinist toast) basic institutions.” What is paradoxical, the late writer says, is that “despite the super-national or even anti-Russian character of the empire, the later has become part of the Russian people to such an extent that at times it is difficult to divide them.” And that means that only radical measures can lead to the two being broken apart. Shiropayev makes a similar argument, Sidorov says, and comes to what for many Russian nationalists is an equally unsettling and unacceptable conclusion that there needs to be “a new conception of Russia” and “a new conception of the Russian people” and that these things will be possible only on the basis of a federation without an imperial people at its center. “In other words,” he says, “a national revolution for present-day Russians [must be] a revolution of a multitude of nations” arising out of the Russian people “and not just one” which by working to hold things together would in fact mean that the ethnic Russians or perhaps better those who speak Russian and view themselves as an ethnic whole would behave as imperialists. Despite what many Russian nationalists think, the emergence of multiple Russias, all using the Russian language does not mean that they would become “a divided people.” As Sidorov notes, “citizens of many countries speak English, Spanish or Arabic, but no one considers them ‘divided peoples.’” “A pluralist mnogorusye [multii-Russias] – the term is Shiropayev’s, in the frameworks of which people of Russian origin and language instead of remaining slaves of the empire will acquire their own real political status as subjects in a multitude of new countries,” Sidorov says. In that event, their “national revolution will reach a successful conclusion.”

Russian lawmakers want to restrict email access by telephone verification, and force providers to block banned information — Meduza

Russian senators have drafted legislation that would require Internet users to verify their identity using their phone numbers, before gaining access to email. The State Duma previously adopted a law that imposes the same restrictions on the use of instant messengers.

Russia’s prison dilemma As the Russian penitentiary system considers its first major reforms in 20 years, human rights advocates don’t like what they see — Meduza

On July 16, Russia’s Council on Human Rights reported that pretrial detention centers in Moscow, the Moscow suburbs, and St. Petersburg currently house twice the number of people they have the capacity to detain. Experts have argued that Russia’s pretrial detention facilities, including jail cells for suspects under investigation and preliminary holding areas, are the most dysfunctional part of the country’s penitentiary system, and that recognition has led to a drive for reform. Gennady Korienko, the head of Russia’s Federal Penitentiary Service (FSIN), and Mikhail Fedotov, who chairs the country’s Council on Human Rights, have already sent a series of proposals on the matter to President Vladimir Putin. Those proposals would mark the first significant nationwide changes to Russia’s jail and prison system in more than 20 years. Meduza asked three top Russian human rights advocates to give their take on the proposed reforms. They told us that some of the new policies would make conditions for suspects, defendants, and convicts in Russia even worse than they already are.

‘These people believe that when they commit torture, they’re saving the Motherland’ A leading advocate for Russian prisoners explains why the Gulag system lives on and what she’s doing about it — Meduza

Olga Romanova directs a nonprofit called Rus’ Sidyashchaya (“Rus’ Imprisoned”) that provides aid to Russian prisoners and their families. Nonetheless, she hasn’t lived in Russia for two full years: in the summer of 2017, she moved abroad after law enforcement officials had her organization’s office searched. Around the same time, reports emerged that Anatoly Rudy, the deputy director of Russia’s Federal Penitentiary Service (FSIN), had reported Romanova for embezzlement. He claimed that she had stolen funds allocated to her by the World Bank to run financial literacy seminars in the Russian prison system. The legal team for Rus’ Imprisoned successfully argued in an arbitration court that they had used the money to run even more seminars than they had initially planned, but the case against Romanova is still open. Meduza special correspondent Sasha Sulim spoke with Romanova about her legal situation, reforming Russia’s prison system, and why that system is still built directly on the framework of the Gulag. Their interview is summarized below.

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Russian Prisons Still a GULAG Where Jailers Believe Torturing Inmates ‘Saves the Motherland,’ Rights Activist Says

Paul Goble Staunton, July 19 – Olga Romanova, the director of the ‘Russia in Jail” organization which seeks to ensure that prisoners in Russia are treated humanely, says that GULAG-style torture continues to this day because jailors “sincerely believe that by torturing people, they are saving the Motherland.” The activist, who was forced to flee Russia two years ago because of trumped up charges by the Russian penal administration, tells Meduza journalist Sasha Sulim this is only one of the ways in which Russian jails even now “live according to the principles of the GULAG” (meduza.io/feature/2019/07/19/oni-iskrenne-schitayut-chto-pytaya-lyudey-spasayut-rodinu). Romanova urges that the Russian penal system be transformed according to the European rather than the American model. The American system, she says, “if it is not worse than ours, is approximately as bad.” Bad prisons in Russia and the US lead to high rates of crime in both; better prisons in Europe, to much lower levels. The problem in the Russian and American systems is that they are more concerned with inflicting punishment rather than reeducating those who have been incarcerated, Romanova says. Russian jailors can’t change the system because almost all of them believe that their task is “to impose punishment.” In Russia, she says, the GULAG continues with the current system having taken shape in the 1930s and having remained largely unchanged since that time. “The country has changed, the system has changed,” but prisons haven’t. And she insists that “there is no need to drive people from Moscow to Magadan or incarcerate them in Norilsk or Labytnangi.” There is one important difference, however. Russian prisoners “now work not for the economy but for the uncle, the boss and the head of the jail. However, slave labor has been preserved and the system in that way has retained the same shape.” According to Romanova, “the motherland of the GULAG is South Africa. The English dreamed up the concentration camp during the Anglo-Boer campaign. At the beginning of the 20th century, concentration camps were terribly popular in many places. But they adapted themselves only in Germany and in Soviet Russia.” “How all this ended in Germany, we know,” Romanova says; “but in Russia everything has remained and nothing has yet happened.” Because the system has not changed neither have the values of those who staff it. Many of them think that “by torturing people, they are fulfilling their duty and saving the Motherland. They sincerely think that” in some cases because the guards today are the sons and grandsons of guards from the past. In some of the camps of Mordvinia, there are guard dynasties extending back “almost 100 years” to someone who was recruited from the peasantry for these jobs. Most do their jobs because they think what they do is right, but of course there are many sadists among the guards who don’t reflect upon why they are doing what they do. At present, Romanova says, “there is no political will for change because the powers that be need fear to be widespread in society. Prison must be horrible and irreversible, and people must be afraid of landing there. People must not go to meetings lest they fall into prison. That view isn’t mine,” she says; It is Putin’s or more precisely “the collective Putin.” Tragically, the situation has become worse in the last decade because the powers that be have closed off the jails from the eyes of society. As a result, the activist continues, those inside feel they can do whatever they want with little risk that they will be held accountable by anyone except others like themselves. Romanova says that she is completing a book about her experiences of working with the Russian penal system.

This man was killed in the Stalinist era and never rehabilitated. His grandson is the first person ever to get access to his case files anyway. — Meduza

On July 5, Russia’s Supreme Court ruled that the Moscow region’s police department must grant Georgy Shakhet, a Russian actor, access to archival files concerning the criminal case against his grandfather, Pavel Zabotin. In 1933, Zabotin was executed on the orders of one of the OGPU’s notorious extrajudicial sentencing panels, or “Troikas.” Shakhet has been fighting for access to his grandfather’s case since 2016, and since 2018, he has been demanding that his grandfather be legally rehabilitated. The rehabilitation process, which is intended to restore the reputation of those targeted in the Stalinist repressions, must often be conducted posthumously because so many victims of those repressions were killed or died in labor camps. However, like many before him, Georgy Shakhet has found that rehabilitation is impossible without access to the case materials of the individual in question. Those case materials, in turn, cannot be released unless the target of the case has been rehabilitated. Shakhet is the first person to have successfully argued in court that the resulting catch-22 only emerged because law enforcement agencies incorrectly interpreted Russian law.

Soviet Seances: When The Chekists Came For The Spiritists

Lenin. Trotsky. Gorky. When Russia’s revolutionary A-listers were conjured up from the dead by a group of Soviet spiritists, the secret police took notice.

Turkey warns it’ll respond to US sanctions over S-400 purchase | The Times of Israel

News from Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Even if Russia Annexes Belarus, Belarusians Won’t Become Russians, Aleksiyevich Says

Paul Goble Staunton, July 20 – On the 25th anniversary of Alyaksandr Lukashenka’s first election as president, Belarusian Nobelist Svetlana Aleksiyevich tells Russian interviewer Zoya Svetova that at that time no one, even in his or her worst nightmare, could imagine that Lukashenka would be in power for so long or act as he has. Lukashenka, she says, remains completely Soviet in his thinking with only this difference: “he loves property and money.” Like many Belarusians and Russians, he has never accepted capitalism or democracy or understood that simply closing up prison camps is not enough to make people free (mbk-news.appspot.com/sences/svetlana-aleksievich/). It takes far more than that as Germany’s experience has shown. The German government has worked hard to extirpate the attitudes that gave rise to Hitlerism but even there many of those attitudes continue to exist. No similar effort has been made in Belarus or in Russia either, the celebrated Belarusian writer continues. Asked about the possibility that Belarus will be absorbed by Putin’s Russia, Aleksiyevich says that in her view, “Belarus is a separate country. The last decade or so has made that obvious despite Lukashenka’s policies and his pro-Russian position. Now, he has been trying to use this national factor and to allow a soft nationalization,” although the Russian language is everywhere. “But people and young people in particular, are Belarusian. The countryside always has been Belarusian.” Lukashenka will hardly want to give up being president to become an oblast leader, she says, but adds that “we don’t know how dependent he is on the Kremlin.” And thus, he may have no choice but to go along. Nonetheless and regardless of what he does, “the people will not become Russian.” Asked what the people might do in that event, Aleksiyevich says “the most horrible outcome would be if young people went into the woods – and this is a possible variant,” one that would mark the beginning of “a civil war. But young people often talk about this. And I personally very much fear blood will flow.” No leaders are eternal despite what they believe, the writer continues. “Chingiz Khan left the scene and Putin and Lukashenka will as well.” What the Belarusian and Russian people need to do is to change themselves and their countries so that such people will not arise again, just as one can’t imagine them now in France or Sweden.

1000 Euro fine for draft evasion from recruiting to the army

In “Nato” Lithuania, too, problems with the prize – in the first half of 2019, to avoid calling for temporary service has already been tried by about 7000 people, reports the Ministry of Defense of the country. Altogether, this year, 31,000 people aged 19-26 will be recruited on the list of conscripts, of which 3827 will be called into military service. Over 60% of those who neglected military service and evade military service are living abroad. The lists of persons who are subject to the service are published on the site sauktin.karys.lt. They are randomly created using a computer program. Along with each last name, a date is given when the conscript needs to arrive at a certain military station. Notices to these conscripts are not sent. Every Monday the lists are updated. For violation of the requirements of the law on military duty is threatened with a fine of 30-140 euros, in the absence of a conscripts in the military committee – a fine of 300 euros. For evasion, the prosecution is threatened with a fine, arrest or imprisonment for up to 3 years. In April of this year, the court reviewed the first criminal case concerning evasion from recruitment to the emergency service. Prisoner, in 1992, the court fined 1,000 euros. Also, border guards have already warned 610 citizens who did not appear to the military. The Lithuanian Military Office reports that the number of evict recruits is growing annually. In 2016, 270 conscripts were administratively sanctioned, in 2017 – 5500, in 2018 – 7400, and in 2019 – already 6800 people. There are 3600 conscripts in the search. As for the other 3900 administrative investigations, they are likely to face fines. Lithuania is a member of NATO since 2004. Lifetime prizes were terminated in 2008, but due to the threat of Russian aggression, it was restored in 2015 and will be in existence until at least 2022. The initial (string) military service lasts nine months. According to the latest data from the defense ministry, over three years, nearly 13,000 people who served nearly three thousand people decided to continue serving in the armed forces on a professional basis.

Володимир Зеленський on Twitter: “I sincerely congratulate @BorisJohnson on his election as UK Prime Minister! I wish him all the success on his new post. I look forward to our first meeting and remain resolute to foster Ukraine-UK relations.” / Twitter

Rob Portman on Twitter: “Congratulations to #Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky and his Servant of the People Party for their very strong showing in the recent parliamentary elections.” / Twitter

Michael McFaul on Twitter: “Remember Obama’s campaign slogan in 2008, “Change We Believe In”? Well this Ukrainian electoral result is sweeping, radical change. I can’t remember another election like this anywhere in the world in recent history. https://t.co/SmkcBlVP2l&#8221; / Twitter

ian bremmer on Twitter: “Ukraine elections: No Russian interference, even though Putin really cares about outcome. Because the population (except the piece occupied by Russia) is united against Russia.” / Twitter

Zelenskyi congratulates Johnson on becoming next UK Prime Minister

23.07.19 17:31 – Zelenskyi congratulates Johnson on becoming next UK Prime Minister President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyi congratulated Boris Johnson on his election as the Conservative Party leader and becoming next UK Prime Minister. View news.

Volker congratulates Ukrainians on parliamentary elections, announces visit – news politics | UNIAN

U.S. Special Representative for Ukraine Negotiations Kurt Volker has congratulated the people of Ukraine on parliamentary elections and announced his visit to Ukraine this week. Volker is planning to hold meetings in Ukraine this week.

UAWire – EU: Ukrainian nation has mandated government to conduct reforms

According to an initial appraisal, fundamental rights and freedoms were respected at the Ukrainian parliamentary elections, said EU Foreign Affairs Spokesperson Maja Kocijancic in a statement on Monday 22 July. The assessment of the elections was based on the appraisal of the OSCE’s Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR). “Following the presidential elections in March and April, the Ukrainian people have once again given a strong mandate for reform,” Kocijancic emphasized, noting that the campaign was competitive and the electoral administration was “competent and effective”. However, the ODIHR did report vote-buying and “intertwined business and political interests” that affected media coverage of the elections. “It is important that the Ukrainian authorities address the shortcomings identified, on the basis of OSCE/ODIHR recommendations,” she stressed. The EU supports a democratic, stable and prosperous Ukraine. “We look forward to continuing to advance our political association and economic integration and deliver on the reform process at the core of our Association Agreement, and closely cooperating to that end with the new Verkhovna Rada and the new government, once formed,” the EU foreign affairs spokesperson stated.

CoE’s Jagland congratulates Zelensky on pro-presidential party’s win – news politics | UNIAN

Secretary General of the Council of Europe Thorbjørn Jagland has congratulated Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on the victory of the Servant of the People Party in the early parliamentary elections in Ukraine. Jagland said the election gives a new hope for Ukraine.

Thorbjørn Jagland: Election creates new hope for Ukraine

The Secretary General of the Council of Europe believes that non-corrupted institutions which people can trust, is the way forward to a sovereign Ukrainian state

Lithuanian president congratulates Zelensky on pro-presidential party’s win – news politics | UNIAN

President of the Republic of Lithuania Gitanas Nauseda has congratulated Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on the victory of the Servant of the People Party in the early parliamentary elections in Ukraine. The presidents had a phone call.

President of Lithuania congratulates Zelensky on win of his party in elections

Gitanas Nauseda noted they discussed bilateral relations, regional security and the successful Lithuanian-Ukrainian cooperation in the EU and NATO

Linkevicius assures of Lithuania’s continued support to Ukraine

Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Linas Linkevicius assures of unwavering support to Ukraine‘s sovereignty and territorial integrity. — Ukrinform.

Warsaw hopes new Ukrainian government will seek deeper relations with EU, NATO

Poland welcomes the peaceful conduct of snap parliamentary elections in Ukraine on July 21 which in principle respected international electoral standards, according to a statement published by the Polish Foreign Ministry. — Ukrinform.

Freeland congratulates Ukraine on successful elections

Canada congratulates Ukrainians on the successful holding of democratic parliamentary elections on July 21, Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland has said. — Ukrinform.

German CDU reps congratulate Zelensky, Servant of People on victory in Rada elections, assure further German support for Ukraine – envoy

Chairman of the German Christian Democratic Union party (CDU), Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, has congratulated Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on the victory of his Servant of the People Party in the early parliamentary elections in Ukraine, noting that he now has a strong mandate to implement the reforms he declared.

How Mueller deputy Andrew Weissmann’s offer to an oligarch could boomerang on DOJ | TheHill

Dmitry Firtash says the overture is evidence of a flawed, politically-motivated DOJ prosecution.

Russian Supreme Court upholds sentence given to Ukrainian Hryb

23.07.19 17:58 – Russian Supreme Court upholds sentence given to Ukrainian Hryb Russia’s Supreme Court on Tuesday confirmed the sentence handed down to Ukrainian citizen Pavlo Hryb, who was convicted for instigating acts of terrorism. View news.

Kyiv court enacts recovery of US$1.3 bln from Russia for Oschadbank’s Crimea assets – news economics | UNIAN

Kyiv’s Court of Appeals has granted the motion filed by Ukraine’s state-owned bank Oschadbank and ruled to execute a ruling issued by the International Court of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) to recover US$1.3 billion from the Russian Federation as compensation for the expropriation of bank assets in Crimea. The Russian Federation should pay not only the specified amount, but also the interest accrued since March 2014.

UAWire – Russia: Crimean shipyards ready to produce speed boats for Greece

Shipbuilding companies in Crimea are ready to fulfill orders for Greek companies, said Crimean “Minister of Industrial Policy” Andrey Vasyut, as cited by the Kryminform news agency. “Crimea’s shipbuilding companies have upgraded their production capabilities and infrastructure, and have the necessary competence to fulfill the orders of Greece’s interested companies,” he said. Representatives of the Zalyv and More shipyards confirmed that they were ready to collaborate and to build speedboats for Greece’s tourist industry. In summer 2018, the Zalyv shipyard was placed under sanctions for its involvement in the construction of the Kerch Bridge. Information about the shipyard, which is situated in annexed Crimea, has been published in an official EU journal. The Russian government has repeatedly claimed that it intends to fully utilize the capacity of the Zalyv shipyard in Kerch with military orders. In April 2018, Zalyv began repairing Russian naval vessels. After Russia’s annexation of Crimea in March 2014, Crimean self-defense representative Artem Mirokhin became general director of Zalyv. The shipyard announced in a press statement that Ukrainian businessman Kostyantyn Zhevago had been removed from the company’s leadership. The plant’s new leadership did not allow armed people onto site. Later the company’s website announced that there had been a hostile takeover. Andrey Zherdev from the Russian republic of Tatarstan was then appointed director of the shipyard. The current general director of Zalyv is Igor Obrubov.

UAWire – Kyiv may impose new sanctions against Russia because of Russian passports in Donbas

The Ukrainian authorities intend to respond to the issuance of Russian passports to the residents of parts of Donetsk and Luhansk regions that …

Kyiv court permits to charge Russia for $1 billion for seizing Ukraine’s bank assets in Crimea

Kyiv Court of Appeal ruled out to exact over a billion dollars from Russian Ministry of Justice

JFO report: Ukraine reports full ceasefire in Donbas on July 22

23.07.19 10:34 – JFO report: Ukraine reports full ceasefire in Donbas on July 22 Since Tuesday midnight, enemy troops have not violated an indefinite ban on the use of weapons. View news.

Russian snipers arrive in occupied Donetsk to destroy OSCE SMM video cameras on contact line

Russian snipers have arrived in the occupied Donetsk to attack and destroy surveillance cameras of the OSCE Special Monitoring Group (SMM), which are installed on the contact line, the press center of the Joint Forces Operation (JFO) reports.

Russian snipers arrive in occupied Donetsk to destroy OSCE SMM video cameras

23.07.19 12:01 – Russian snipers arrive in occupied Donetsk to destroy OSCE SMM video cameras Russian snipers have arrived in the occupied Donetsk to attack and destroy surveillance cameras of the OSCE Special Monitoring Group, which are installed on the contact line. View news.

Russian snipers arrive in occupied Donetsk to destroy OSCE SMM video cameras on contact line, – JFO

Russian snipers have arrived in the occupied Donetsk to attack and destroy surveillance cameras of the OSCE Special Monitoring Group, which are installed on the contact line, the press center of the Joint Forces Operation (JFO) reports. “Russian sniper groups arrived in occupied Donetsk with the task of preparing and carrying out shelling attacks, destroying surveillance cameras of the OSCE SMM, which are installed in accordance with the Minsk agreements in certain sections of the disengagement line, which will be further evidence of the cunning of the Russian occupation forces and their neglect of international agreements,” the JFO said on its Facebook page on Tuesday with reference to the command of the JFO. The JFO notes that the online surveillance video cameras established by the OSCE SMM allow video recording of the situation in 24/7 mode.

Russian snipers target surveillance technology in Donetsk

Groups of Russian snipers arrived in occupied Donetsk to destroy surveillance cameras of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission installed at strategic locations of the frontline, the headquarters of the Joint Forces Operation (JFO) reported on its Facebook page on Tuesday. — Ukrinform.

Donbas occupiers issue over 850 Russian passports to civilians in three months – journalists (Video) – news ukraine | UNIAN

The occupying authorities in Ukraine’s Donbas have issued 854 Russian passports to civilian residents of Luhansk and Donetsk regions over three months, a report by investigative journalists says. A few more thousand passports were issued to Russian-led forces.

Ukraine army destroys enemy firing position in Donbas (Video) – news war | UNIAN

Members of the 93rd “Kholodniy Yar” separate mechanized brigade of the Armed Forces of Ukraine have destroyed an enemy firing position near the Avdiyivka industrial zone in Donbas, eastern Ukraine. However, it is not indicated when the strike occurred.

Razumkov: Amnesty won’t be granted for militants in Donbas

23.07.19 11:28 – Razumkov: Amnesty won’t be granted for militants in Donbas The military operations in Donbas must be stopped, however, this decision does not imply any amnesty for members of illegal armed formations, especially those involved in war crimes. View news.

Razumkov: Amnesty won’t be granted for militants in Donbas

The military operations in Donbas must be stopped, however, this decision does not imply any amnesty for members of illegal armed formations, especially those involved in war crimes. — Ukrinform.

Servant of the People leader rules out amnesty for war criminals – news politics | UNIAN

Leader of the Servant of the People Party Dmytro Razumkov has said the amnesty for those involved in war crimes in Donbas is unacceptable. All war criminals will be held liable.

Fate of law on special status of self-governance in ORDLO will depend on Normandy format talks, implementation of Minsk agreements

Servant of the People Party head Dmytro Razumkov has said extending the term of the law on special status of self-governance in certain regions of Donetsk and Luhansk regions (ORDLO) will depend on the format of Normandy format talks and implementation of the Minsk agreements.

The 63rd Reserve Brigade received its own barracks

The 63rd individual mechanized Brigade of the Army Corps of Reserve received a military camp in Starokonstantinov, Khmelnytsky Oblast. In accordance with the order of the Ministry of Defense, two barracks, ten storage facilities, checkpoints, guarded rooms, warehouses and other commercial premises, formerly located on the balance sheet of the Khmelnytsky apartment operation department and 3568th base, were transferred to the military unit for the maintenance and operation. Among the newly formed backup units, it was the 63rd Brigade, in the first fall of 2017, that it took more than 3,000 reservists of the second-round operational reserve and conducted combat coordination during brigade tactical exercises.

Ukraine’s SBU suspects Ukrainian film distributors of work for Russian special services – news politics | UNIAN

The SBU Security Service of Ukraine is investigating a criminal case opened against Ukrainian film distribution companies suspected of transferring funds to Russian special services and sabotaging Ukrainian cinematography. The film distributors are also accused of being used by the special services of the Russian Federation as agents of influence in Ukraine.

Ukraine’s SBU opens case against domestic film distributors

The SBU, Ukraine’s State Security Service opened a criminal case against Ukrainian film distributors, suspecting certain officials of financial relations with the Russian special services and wrecking the Ukrainian film industry. This is mentioned in the court materials. Since 2014, certain officials of В&Н Film Distribution Company, Ukrainian Film Distribution, Kinomania, Volga Ukraine and Multi Media Distribution used some of the earned money to fund the unknown persons involved on organization of mass riots on the territory of Ukraine, violating its territorial integrity, destablizing its political and economic institutions. The court materials also state that the Ukrainian market of film distribution is divided between the said companies, which get about 100 million U.S. dollars in the box offices annually. SBU insists that Russian special services made the owners of these companies pay some of the money to fund the organization of the illegal protest actions in Ukraine. “In turn, enjoying the actual support of Russian special services, owners of the said companies are used as influence agents in Ukraine, calling the shots in the movie industry market, wrecking the distribution of Ukrainian films”, reads the case. The companies emerged at the Ukrainian market, appearing as affiliate companies of those in Russia, enjoying the financial ties with Russian enterprises, owned by Russian citizens.

The United States will hand over two patrol boats to the Coast Guard

Posted by Editorial July 23, 2019 Naval Force, Important 1 Comment The United States will promote the development of the ship-catcher of the State Border Guard Service of Ukraine and will hand over two patrol boats Marine Guard STSU About informs Ukrinform Such information was provided by Counselor of the US Embassy’s Expert Control and Border Security Program Kevin Killer during the International Conference on the Development of Marine Security of the SBGS in Kyiv. These are much larger boats than they were previously transferred to Safe Boat 27 for the 10th SPSU detachment “Dozor” “We are working with the Ukrainian side on the issues of the protection of the maritime borders and have identified the need to build not only the infrastructure of the naval units, but also the need to upgrade the fleet. Therefore, the decision was made to provide the maritime guard of the border guard service of two boats serviced by 25 people, “he said. In his turn, US Ambassador to Ukraine William Taylor noted that the United States will continue to provide assistance to Ukraine through the aggression of the Russian Federation, in particular at the sea. He noted that security in the Azov and Black Seas of Ukraine is an important security issue not only for Ukraine but also for the whole world. The United States understands that Ukraine suffers from the Russian Federation because of the obstacle to freedom of navigation. “Ukraine is the gateway between East and Europe, so we have to help Ukraine,” he said. In this context, he said that the US has allocated $ 4 million to create a rapid response group in the cities of Mariupol and Berdyansk, and it is now necessary to create modern centers for their permanent deployment and ship repair. Commentary on the Ukrainian Military Portal Information about the type of boats planned for the transfer is not known. The information “will be serviced by 25 people” can be interpreted as a crew of one boat, and the total number of people needed for the complete set of boats and staff that will serve them. Patrol boats of the type Island, which were transferred in September 2018 to the Naval Forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, have a crew of up to 16 people – two officers and 14 team members. For their replacement in the US, Sentinel’s 24-member crew-4 crew and 20-person crew have been developed and purchased. USCGC Richard Snyder (WPC-1127) Photo: defpost.com The first contract provided for the construction of 34 boats, but in 2016 an agreement was signed on 26 additional Sentinel boats. Brief technical characteristics of the Sentinel class boats: Displacement: 253 tons Length: 46.8 meters Width: 8.11 meters Draft: 2.9 meters Maximum speed: 28 knots Crew: 20 people and 4 officers Autonomy: 5 days Arms: 1 remote controlled module with a caliber of 25 mm and 4 large-caliber machine guns with a caliber of 12.7 mm Also, the US Coast Guard uses Marine Protector class boats. Their crew is 10 people. In service since 1998. In general, such boats were built. USCGC Tern Brief technical characteristics of Marine Protector class boats: Displacement: 91 tons Length: 27 meters Width: 5.92 meters Draft: 1.7 meters Maximum speed: 25 knots Crew: 10 people Autonomy: 3 days Arms: two 12.7 mm machine guns

Neptune: Alternate rocket launches – July 24 and 25

Author: Editorials July 23, 2019 News of the military-industrial complex 0 Comments On July 25 and July 26, 2019, firing of domestic missile systems will be conducted on the territory of the State testing ground in the Odessa region. This is reported by the Ukrainian Military Portal These are RK-360MTs “Neptun” and “Vilkha”. In the previous days, preparatory work will be carried out, and on Thursday and Friday launch tests. The relevant area will be closed on these days in accordance with NOTAM notifications: A2078 / 19 A2079 / 19 Missile Shooting Area July 25-26, 2019 At this time, there will be limited access to the Cape Calf, Ice Creek and 1-10 km of the Marine Spit from the np Lebedivka Preliminary firing took place from June 12 to 14, 2019. Also recently, tests of the military part of the rocket R-360 complex RK-360MTs “Neptun”. The RK-360MTs – a cruise missile complex of ground-based anti-ship missile missiles designed to defeat class warships cruiser, destroyer, frigate, corvette, landing, tanker ships and transports acting both independently and in the composition of ship’s groups and landing units, and Coastal radio-contrasts, in simple and complex meteorological conditions at any time of day and year, with active fire and radio electron counteraction of the enemy.

The 96th brigade buys the simulators of the “Buk-M1” SAM

96th anti-aircraft missile Kiev brigade held electronic auction for the purchase of multimedia simulators of the services of the anti-aircraft missile division armed with the “Buk-M1” complex. It is planned to acquire training systems for self-propelled fire equipment 9A310M1 for 3.2 million hryvnas, 9C470M1 combat control point for 2.125 million hryvnias, 9C18M1 target detection station for 532 thousand hryvnias, as well as a complex of simulation of the combat situation and a reproduction of a single information space for the training of the division’s services. for 2,137 million UAH The bid was attended by FOP Shvets O.E. and LLC “Design Bureau” Logika “, which, according to the disclosure protocol, announced on July 22, offered the lowest price. Currently, the winner is waiting for the decision of the tender committee of the part. ZRK Buk-M1 The term of equipment delivery is November 15, 2019.

The SBU called the purchase of radar in the US unnecessary

it is known that in 2016 such a system was purchased from the American company ….

Armored vests embezzlement: Ukraine’s Defense Ministry officers still not notified of suspicion

Mass falsifications in favor of Opposition Bloc candidate recorded on 105th constituency

Mass falsifications in favor of Opposition Bloc candidate Viktoriya Hryb were recorded on 105th constituency (Luhansk region). Members of commission were threatened with physical assault, and district election committee was giving papers to people without local registration and to military servicemen. This was reported to 112.ua by the observer on elections (and trustee of the Opposition Platform – For Life parliamentary from this district Serhiy Medvedchuk) Kostyantyn Ryabtsev. At first, there were two favorites in this constituency – Serhiy Medvedchuk and a candidate, promoted by DTEK Viktoriya Hryb. As DTEK owns here a power station, they claim that they would fire workers if they do not vote for their candidate and put pressure having started to bribe voters before elections for cash. They simply say – it’s either you vote for us or we would close the power station. Although it is a manipulation, people believe in threats,” Ryabtsev said. According to him, the situation on the constituency reached its peak. During the day, mass falsifications were recorded. Many acts, claims were drawn up and criminal cases were opened because of violations. “Absolutely impossible things were happening, when strangers broke into the district commission when there were manipulations, numerous calls to police and reports on a bomb in the commission etc. Threats, pressure on members of the commission were happening throughout the day. We filmed how a person fled the commission building with a voting paper, as outsiders got into the building at night, observers’ attention was distracted to give voting papers to people who did not have the right to vote. The registration was not checked, two voting papers were given to military servicemen instead of one. The flashes of the camera could be seen in booths – voting was taken by the camera. The headquarters of the Opposition Bloc candidate brought strong young men who speak fenya to the site and they were inside the commission building under the guise of journalists and threatened to assault members of commissions, observers, tried to squeeze people out of the site, so that they did not interfere with the falsification of elections,” Ryabtsev said. He also noted that there is a serious concern that it would be possible to correctly determine the outcome of the election in this district. “I hope that the law enforcement agencies and the district commission will find out the truth. The claims were written, lawsuits are being prepared, full-scale work is being done to prevent distortion of results,” Ryabtsev summed up. It should be noted that the front-line district №105 includes Zhovtnevy district, part of Kamianobridsky district of Luhansk, part of Novoaydar district, and has only 9.400 voters. At this point, the regional election commission has processed only 33.3% of protocols as for this moment. According to the latest data, Viktoria Hryb has 375 votes, Serhiy Medvedchuk has 334 votes. Now the district commission stopped counting votes.

What does Ukraine’s record-low turnout mean?

Ukraine’s parliamentary elections of 2019 have become historical due to the rapid fall of the old elites and a record low voters’ turnout. Only 49.8% of Ukrainians with the right to vote came to the polling stations. It is important to understand that the new parliament was elected by 15 million Ukrainians – the third population of the country. But Rada will lead the whole country, and this will have to be accepted. If Servant of the People party forms a mono-coalition, that is, there will be a majority from one party, then it turns out that only 6 million people have elected it. A country with 42 million citizens, led by a force, elected by 6 million. Of course, this casts a shadow on the legitimacy of the new government, although according to the law, nothing was violated. It turns out that the Zelensky’s party has torn all the politicians in this election, gaining almost 250 mandates, but only the seventh part of the country voted for this power. Is it bad or good? Actually, the Ukrainians themselves decided not to go to the polls, which resulted in such a consequence. But why was the turnout so low? Two months ago, in the second round of the presidential election, the turnout was 61.4%, and the first round was even higher. Then why now it fell so sharply? Experts note that the main reason is that the Ukrainians have long ceased to believe in real changes, in politicians. Even in the new politicians. In the case of the presidential election, for sure, the excitement and bitterness of Ukrainians played on the administration of Petro Poroshenko played. People went to the sites not for Zelensky, as against Poroshenko. A new power has come, which gives promises but does nothing. Oligarchs are looming behind the new faces. The electorate is demotivated. In addition, summer is a time for vacations. People really did not know for whom they vote – at some districts, these were mostly only “no-names.” Under the brand of “new faces” the party, taking advantage of the still high rating of Zelensky brought responsible “piano voters.” MPs without big ambitions. Therefore, if the new government fails, as the previous one, if the war continues, and the tariffs grow if the “new faces” discredit themselves, and the old ones show the true face, protests, and new elections might take place. And the turnout might be even smaller. This is a bad trend because with every election it turns out that the country is led by a coalition elected by a fewer and fewer number of citizens. Ukrainian authorities reflect the interests and beliefs of an ever-smaller number of Ukrainians. And if so, then the voices of those who will question the legitimacy of the Ukrainian parliament will soon be getting louder. Like, supported by a minority. Parliament is the most important body of state administration in the parliamentary-presidential republic. Maybe that’s why many politicians do not predict a long life for this convocation. An attempt by Zelensky (or Presidential Office head Andriy Bogdan) to cheat, calling the elections for the summer, to bring more loyal people to the Rada, laid a mine under the parliament.

Ukraine election: CEC processes 97% of protocols – news politics | UNIAN

The Central Election Commission has processed 97% of the protocols received from constituencies across Ukraine in the snap parliamentary elections. Pro-president’s Servant of the People remains in a major lead, so far gaining 43.13% of popular support.

CEC counts over 95% of vote in Ukraine’s parliamentary elections

The Central Election Commission (CEC) of Ukraine has processed 95.03% of electronic voting protocols in multi-member constituency in Ukraine’s snap parliamentary elections. — Ukrinform.

CEC with 95.01% of protocols processed: Servant of the People – 43.13% of votes, Opposition Platform – For Life – 13.06%, Batkivschyna – 8.18%, European Solidarity – 8.12%, Holos – 5,84%

A tally of 95.01% of the ballots cast in Ukraine’s July 21 parliamentary election shows that the Servant of the People party (43.13% of the vote), the Opposition Platform-For Life (13.06%), the European Solidarity party (8.12%), Batkivschyna (8.18%), and Holos (5.84%) are set to enter the Verkhovna Rada.

Fatherland outruns European Solidarity as 93% of votes processed – LB.ua news portal

Fatherland outruns European Solidarity as 93% of votes processed. Political – LB.ua news portal. Latest from Ukraine and the world today

Servant of the People holding the lead in snap Rada elections with 92.97% of protocols processed – news politics | UNIAN

The Servant of the People Party with 43.13% is holding the lead in snap elections to the Verkhovna Rada, Ukraine’s parliament, after 92.97% of the voting protocols have been processed. The Opposition Platform – For Life Party ranks second.

Ukraine’s Reform Opportunity – WSJ

The country’s comedian president now has the power to get serious.

Servant Of The People — Or Master? Big Parliamentary Win Hands Ukraine’s New President A More Dominant Role

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy’s party is on track to hold a historic majority in parliament. How much power will he have, and what will he do with it?

‘There Needs To Be Change’ — Ukrainian Voters Put President’s Party On Course For Historic Parliamentary Majority

Ukrainian voters had high expectations after appearing to give President Volodymyr Zelenskiy’s party an unprecedented majority in parliament to tackle corruption and end the war against Russia-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine. Partial results from the July 21 snap election showed Zelenskiy’s Servant of the People was poised to become the first party in Ukraine’s postindependence history to obtain a majority in the parliament.

Big Win For Zelenskiy’s Party In Ukraine Elections Solidifies Mandate For Change

President Volodymyr Zelenskiy’s Servant of the People party appears to have secured a majority in Ukraine’s parliamentary elections, solidifying his mandate for change.

Best Supporting Actor? After Big Win, Ukrainian Comic-Turned-President Seeks Prime Minister

Volodymyr Zelenskiy, and the political party he gave birth to, came up big in the snap elections, netting a majority of seats in parliament. Next on tap? Finding a prime minister who can steady the…

Ukraine’s Comedian President’s Party to Have More Control of Parliament Than Any Party in History

The parliamentary elections on Sunday saw Volodymyr Zelenskiy’s party win an absolute majority.

Will a comedian become Ukraine’s mightiest leader? | Elections 2018 News | Al Jazeera

Volodymyr Zelensky’s Servant of the People party has won 227 seats in the 450-seat parliament, securing a thin majority.

Ukraine’s president gets mandate to reboot political order – Newspaper – DAWN.COM

KIEV: Ukrainians gave their comedian-turned-president Volodymyr Zelensky a mandate to reboot the country’s politics on Sunday by handing his party a record score in parliamentary elections, exit polls showed. Zelensky’s Servant of the People party — named after the sitcom he starred in before his shock presidential win in April — took 43.9 percent of the vote in Sunday’s election, according to combined figures from three pollsters. It was the highest score in a parliamentary election for any party since Ukraine gained its independence with the 1991 collapse of the Soviet Union. The pro-Moscow Opposition Platform-For Life came second with 11.5 percent, the polls said.

Former Comic Wins In Ukraine Election Again, His Party Gets Bigger : NPR

President Volodymyr Zelensky, who gained fame by playing a fictional president on television, hopes a new parliament will give him the clout to follow through on his promise to tackle corruption.

Zelensky’s victory in Ukraine is bad news for the oligarchs and a strategic loss for Putin | The Independent

As Europe gets ready for its biggest nation in the west of Europe to say goodbye under a nationalist leadership, and a parliament unable to control the executive at the other end of Europe, the parliament of Ukraine has just been elected with serious hopes for the first time since the Berlin Wall fell that it can lead Ukraine out of bad politics and worse economics. Ukraine

Will Ukraine’s new president be a benevolent dictator? – Bloomberg

Ukraine’s new president has a better chance of reviving the country’s economy than ending the war with Russia.

Party of Ukraine’s New President Is on Track for Big Electoral Victory – The New York Times

No post-Soviet leader has had a parliamentary majority in the country, so the victory could be a watershed moment for President Volodymyr Zelensky.

Ukrainian President’s Party Set to Win Majority in Elections – WSJ

The new party of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky was on course to win an outright majority in Parliament—better than expected and a first for any single party in the country’s history.

Ukraine election: Volodymyr Zelensky poised to win majority | World | The Times

President Zelensky’s party is on track to become the first in the history of modern Ukraine to control parliament without needing a coalition partner.With about 75 per cent of the vote counted Sluga Naroda had taken a 42.8 per cent share and looked set to gain the 226 seats necessary for a maj

Ukraine president’s party wins snap vote – YouTube

Al Jazeera English Published on Jul 21, 2019 Exit polls show the party of Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky has won a snap parliamentary election. The former comedian called the vote after his landslide victory in April, as parliament was packed with his opponents. While polls suggest his party will obtain a majority, Zelensky will need to seek a coalition partner to govern. Al Jazeera’s Mohammed Adow reports.

Timothy Ash: What Ukraine’s vote for change means | KyivPost – Ukraine’s Global Voice

The dust is just settling on the results of the July 21 parliamentary election in Ukraine, with initial indications that Vladimir (as he likes to be called) Zelensky has secured a majority for his Servant of the People party, only formed a few months ago. It looks like he captured at least 115 seats in the 199 single-mandate constituencies and perhaps 120 seats in the party system, so likely 235-241 seats in the 424-seat Verkhovna Rada. Six quick takeouts: 1. Turnout was low, at just under 50%, which I think is the lowest in an election in post-independent Ukraine. I am not sure that this tells that much as after now three elections this year there is perhaps some election fatigue sinking in. Plus it is summer, and many people likely are away from their home constituencies. 2. The Zelensky party victory (42.5+% of the vote), alongside the 6.4+% secured by rock star Svyatoslav Vakarchuk’s Voice (Golos) party, represents a huge 50+% vote for new, reform parties, which have marketed themselves as fielding political novices in the Rada, and as new and fresh reform parties. It is hence a rejection of traditional politics in Ukraine, and in favor of something new. That said, and while much has been made of the second place for the Moscow-leaning Opposition Platform for Life party, which secured around 12.9%, around three-quarters of votes went for pro-Western, reform parties – adding in the votes for ex-President Petro Poroshenko’s European Solidarity and ex-Prime Minister Tymoshenko’s Fatherland. That is a striking rejection of Vladimir Putinism. 3. While it is important to recognize Zelensky and his party as anti-establishment, this is in the post-Soviet context, as opposed to the trend in the Western context. This means Zelensky and Servant of the People represent liberal, market, democratic ideals, and not far-right/fascist inclinations as is too often appearing the case now in Western market democracies. Perhaps this reflects a Ukrainian rejection of Putinism, and Russia and Putin’s inability to influence the Ukrainian domestic political space after the Kremlin’s invasion of Donbas and the annexation of Crimea – and contrasts with Putin’s remarkable success in supporting far-right and far-left movements in the West. 4. Much has been made of recent perhaps anti-reform initiatives including raids on pro-Poroshenko brokers, a large foreign-owned steel maker and then the lustration bill proposed by some in the Zelensky team. But I think in general Zelensky is pro-Western and pro-business, and any less market favorable initiatives will be moderated in discussion with G7 ambassadors and international financial institutions. Important in terms of the longer-term direction of this government will be Zelensky’s choice of the prime minister – remember Ukraine is still a parliamentary-presidential democracy and the prime minister/government will be an important check on the president. Over the weekend, Zelensky highlighted herein the important role of the Rada as a check and balance and indicated that he will nominate a prime minister who is a respected economist, with good relations with the West and who has had no political career as yet. This suggests that he has someone clearly in mind. But it suggests a technocrat as prime minister – and I think it likely means one of the following: ex-Finance Minister Oleksandr Danylyuk, ex-Economy Minister Aivaras Abromavicius, ex-National Bank of Ukraine deputy governor Vladyslav Rashkovan, Naftogaz CEO Andriy Kobolyev, and Naftogaz executive Yuriy Vitrenko. All would be excellent choices from the market perspective. 5. Although Servant of the People has seemingly secured a majority in its own right, it will be interesting to see if Zelensky still looks to bring Vakarchuk and Golos into a broader reform coalition. Zelensky has already signaled that he will hold coalition talks with Golos. If he looks to create a coalition, even though his party has a majority, it will send a very good signal, as it will imply he understands the need to build a strong coalition to push through a radical reform agenda – particularly important will be furthering the fight against corruption, judicial reform, and land reform. 6. Assuming a government is formed by September, with a reform prime minister at its head, the first thing to look for will be the reformulation of the relationship with the International Monetary Fund. The expectations are that the existing standby by arrangement is revamped into a longer-term loan, with additional monies provided to augment the program – perhaps up to $9 billion. I would expect a new agreement to be in place, with important structural benchmarks, by the autumn at the general meeting of the IMF in October.

Will Zelensky’s Big Act get the Ratings? | The National Interest

Zelensky knows that in addition to swapping out the cast, altering the set can also lead to a major plot change.

The far right just got humiliated in Ukraine’s election — but don’t write it off just yet – Europe – Haaretz.com

Despite running on a joint slate, the extremists fell short of the electoral threshold. However, their nationalistic rhetoric has muscled its way into the political discourse

There can be no coalition in parliament – Mahera – LB.ua news portal

There can be no coalition in parliament – Mahera. The Servant of the People party assumes the coalition rights. Political – LB.ua news portal. Latest from Ukraine and the world today

Poroshenko outlines conditions of cooperation with Zelensky

The fifth president of Ukraine and the leader of the European Solidarity party, Petro Poroshenko, is ready to cooperate with the current president of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky, if he continues the course of European and Euro-Atlantic integration. Poroshenko said this in an interview with German television channel ZDF. “If President Zelensky implements what he stated [continuation of the course of European and Euro-Atlantic integration], I will definitely support him and Ukraine’s path towards Europe,” Poroshenko said. According to him, this is the main task for the state. In this context, Poroshenko called the increase in the number of supporters of joining NATO (from 16% to 58%) and the EU (from 33% to 70%) the main change that occurred during his presidency. According to Poroshenko, politicians who are trying to stop the process of Ukraine’s movement to the West want to return the country under Russian influence and lead it to a very deep crisis. The fifth president of Ukraine also sees “alarming signs” of the possibility of returning members of Yanukovych’s team to the country. As reported, the snap parliamentary elections were held in Ukraine on Sunday, July 21.

Opinion: Ukraine is tired of yesterday | Opinion | DW | 22.07.2019

Nowhere is democracy’s huge and impressive potential more striking than in Ukraine. The parliamentary elections have confirmed a political shakeup, which offers a lot more than just new faces, says DW’s Bernd Johann.

Razumkov: President not to put pressure on Parliament

Dmytro Razumkov, the leader of the Servant of the People party, says that President Volodymyr Zelensky does not influence his political force and will not put pressure on Parliament in the future. — Ukrinform.

Zelensky discloses name of possible candidate for prosecutor general’s post – news politics | UNIAN

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has said the candidacy of deputy head of the Presidential Administration Ruslan Riaboshapka is being considered for the post of Ukraine’s prosecutor general. Zelensky says Ukraine needs a new prosecutor general.

State Bureau of Investigation summons Poroshenko

Ukraine’s State Bureau of Investigation (SBI) has again summoned former Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko for questioning regarding alleged embezzlement and other related crimes. — Ukrinform.

Ukrainian ports lose more than $230 million over Russian aggression in Azov Sea

According to Rayvis Vetskahans, Ukrainian ports in Azov demand complex support on state and international levels

Tesla to put Supercharger stations in Ukraine – news economics | UNIAN

Tesla plans to put two Supercharger stations in Ukraine. According to the map posted on the company’s website, two new stations may soon appear in Ukraine’s Rivne and Zhytomyr regions.

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Moscow Patriarchate Driving Away Parishioners by Its Outlandish Statements on Some Subjects and Its Silence on Others, Trifonov Says

Paul Goble Staunton, July 20 – Most people in Russia and the West accept the Moscow Patriarchate’s own explanation for why so few Russians attend its churches – the latest figures show only about three percent of Russians do. According to the church, this is the result of the same social trends that have driven down attendance at churches in Western countries. That explanation is not necessarily wrong, but it is very much incomplete, Moscow commentator Yevgeny Trifonov says. In fact, the church itself by its increasingly outrageous statements about some subjects and its inexplicable silence about other issues is playing a major role in driving Russians away (kasparov.ru/material.php?id=5D32B978C67C9). Since Ukrainian autocephaly, the Moscow Patriarchate has made only “rare public statements,” the commentator says; but what it has said officially in public is ever stranger and offensive, something that is doing nothing to attract more Russians to its churches and likely is driving some who have been attending away. First, there was the declaration by Metropolitan Ioann of Belgorod that baptized Christians had won the war against Hitler while those who had died were atheists, implicitly suggesting they had it coming. Then, Archpriest Dimitry Smirnov, the head of the Patriarchal commission on the family and the defense of motherhood and children, opined that women are weaker and less capable than men. And finally, most recently, Vakhtang Kipshidze, the vice president of the Synod Department for relations between church and society, declared that electronic passports were a threat to the freedom and rights of Russians. This last, Trifonov says, recalls the church’s opposition to trains and steamships 150 years ago when its leaders said that the steam these things released came from the devil; and it also highlights the fact that the Moscow Patriarchate has been anything but vocal in supporting human rights causes. The church didn’t say anything about the Golunov case or about the trash dump controversies. It hasn’t reacted to denigrating comments by officials about the Russian people or to the decision of the Moscow authorities to block candidates from opposition groups from having the chance to be on the ballot. And it hasn’t talked about torture in Russian prisons. As everyone is aware, the churches of the Moscow Patriarchate have been emptying out in recent years with fewer and fewer Russians choosing to attend services. If the hierarchy continues to make such declarations or alternatively not speak out when it should, the denomination’s churches will empty “still more rapidly in the future.”