Ukraine news/Archive/2015-06

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June 2015

29.6 Foreign drone operators photographs, made themselves during testing, found on a Ukrainian drone intercepted by LPR-report. Not Ukrainian style uniform; and one operator said to be photographed earlier when Georgia attacked Abkhazia

28.6 Ukraine my default on 24 July-date of the next substantial repayment day, according to a report on Russian TV, referring to opinions of analysts -Goldman Sachs report mentioned (developing)

Joint Centre for Control and Coordination (JCCC) asked OSCE to perform radiation control in Donetsk (rusvesna quoting jccc and ATO press center). Repeated powerful explosions at Donetsk chemical plant, caused by UAF firing heavy missiles, are near nuclear waste storage facility; this may lead to a disaster.

27.6 The Ukrainian authorities have not fulfilled any of its obligations with respect to the special order -Zakharchenko. DPR/LPR were not consulted; instead, Kiev consulted Western experts, in particular Venetian commission of the Council of Europe (the commission conclusion noted there are no provisions for special regulations, allowing to adopt laws to Donetsk and Luhansk regions).

  • DPR/LPR sent their proposed changes (Constitutional Amendments), (on local elections) , (amendments to special governance law). Those proposed changes were not adopted (or even discussed) by Kiev.
  • Poroshenko used 'representatives of Donbas' of his, or Kiev choosing to pretend that Minsk agreement was followed. He was reminded that by Minsk 1, only DPR/LPR leaders are such representatives. "Without their written consent, constitutional amendments by Kiev cannot be considered to be in fulfillment of Minsk agreements"-Pushilin, DPR representative at Minsk negotiations.

26.6 2015 01:20 (Moscow) Putin calls Obama. Ukraine, Syria, Iran discussed; countering IS emphasized- (Kremlin readout-google translated) (White House readout)

25.6 UAF General-major, 6 other UAF officers, all from Donbas, change sides, join opolchenie -video (English captions). Say army should not be used in civil war/against civilians.

23.6 Two civilians killed by Ukrainian shelling.

Little progress in Minsk. Kiev did not present proposals on special status or local elections in Donbas

Poroshenko: The initiators of creating any republics will be brought to justice, should anyone try, the response will be instantaneous

Media reports: Europeans demand that we come up with a strategy for the special status for the Donbas region. This status must not be limited to three years (the way it is envisaged in the law on the status of separate territories) and be applicable on a permanent basis," first deputy head of the parliamentary committee on foreign affairs Ivanna Klympush-Tsintsadze said.

Martin Sajdik (the new OSCE representative in the Trilateral Contact Group) will visit Moscow on 22 June, meet Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Grigory Karasin.

19.6 MCCain arrives to Dnepropetrovsk, meets Dnepr 1 (aka 'Kolomoiskii') battalion, Bereza commander -report, photos

US, EU Ready Tough Russia Sanctions...-NY Times

Sanctions are illegal, semi-criminal - Naryshkin, Speaker of the Russian State Duma

New Odessa MOI boss, Saakashvilli teammate from Georgia, ordered checkpoints closed, machine guns returned to storage'. -Those officers are 'too corrupt', "people need not be afraid of police and should respect law..." In the meantime, Saakashvilli [http://www.charter97.org/ru/news/2015/6/19/156279/ threatened to fire customs officers 'if the income will not increase'.

18.6 US Senate passed defense bill, 300 mln for arming Ukraine, (US News) , (TASS)-- (Rob Portman amendment). "Half of that $300 million is fenced off until at least $60 million is spent on the most important capabilities the Ukrainians need and have requested: real-time intelligence, defensive lethal assistance, and counter-artillery radars. If the Administration fails to use this money for the purposes specified, they must use it to support other nations facing an increased risk of Russian aggression"- (June 10, 2015 press release).

Nalivaichenko gone, replaced by Vasilii Gritsak -currently head of the Anti-Terrorism Center of SBU - first deputy head of the SBU; works for SBU since 1990

17.6 Renewed Ukrainian shelling from Marinka, mortars, self-propelled artillery used; fire returned (UAF casualties, 12 people estimate). Opolchenie hit under Yasinovataia (casualties). Fighting in LPR (Zolotoe; explosions heard in Stanitsa Luganskaia

16.6 Contact group meeting: no breakthrough TASS (engl.). In the Russian version: under-100 mm weapons withdrawal almost agreed; (only) technical matters remain. (Tagliavini was there for OSCE; said her successor was already found; Азамат Кульмухаметов -Azamat Kulmuhametov is a new face for Russia--previously had a good look on Syria ).

Poroshenko tells Rada that he is not happy with Nalivaichenko work in SBU, and that he agreed to lead foreign intelligence instead; but he is not yet removed from SBU (that is decided by Rada). All this happens in the background of conflict between Nalivaichenko and prosecuting attorney office and before Nalivaichenko trip to the US, to present to congressmen and experts 'evidence of Russian involvement' in the conflict in Donbas.

15.6 Kerry-Lavrov phone conversation (google translate) stressed need to stop shelling, fulfill Minsk. Syria, Iran, and other issues also discussed.

Over the weekend, OSCE SMM recorded 594 blasts near Donetsk airport and another 180 in Shirokino -rusvesna.

A member of the Ukrainian Embassy in France and a member of the Foreign Intelligence Service of Ukraine (SVRU) refused to work for the Ukrainian authorities because of disagreement with the policy of Kiev. Called ATO operation a genocide.

A meeting in Donetsk, Oktriabrskii district residents asking to protect them from shelling, start an offensive against UAF. Zakharchenko arrived and calmed them down by promising housing in safer parts of the city.

10 civilians were wounded in UAF shelling overnight in Donetsk; opolchenie returned fire, destroyed 4 UAF batteries shelling the city
Graham video from the meeting (English captions): Donetsk residents tell about shelling by Ukraine, harsh living conditions, (no pensions from Ukraine). Blame Kiev, say that Minsk not fulfilled, heavy Ukrainian weapons not moved; wonder when this all will end, ask for help. (At the meeting, Zakharchenko made a list of concrete problems/requests, was able to resolve what can be resolved).
Cassad, "On horrible and strange war". A woman from Donetsk report : ... 'You understand that your personal life is not worth anything at all. You and your child - just a target. And behind a human shield of you and your family, someone sweet eats, well sleeps, decides on splitting Donbass profits, sells arms, satisfies political ambitions on the international scene and in the media, including LiveJournal'...

Odessa. Meeting against Saakashvilli, for releasing political prisoners, and calling for commemoration of 2 May 2014 victims. Earlier Saakashvilli laughing-off -his twit announced medals to 'maters heroin' (heroine mothers) .

Large-scale fire at an oil depot in Vasylkivska district of Kiev region began in the evening of Monday, June 8. Five people were killed and 18 injured. According to Avakov, the losses are more than one billion hryvnia (about $ 48 million). GSCHS can not predict when it will be able to extinguish the fire (but it mostly burned out by now)- TASS, 15.6. Ukrainian-origin sabotage for financial gain is suspected

14.6 Ukraine moves Pions, heavy long range self-propelled 230 mm artillery 'towards Donetsk'-video. Increased fighting in Mariinka, shelling of Donetsk reported.

U.S. Poised to Put Heavy Weaponry in East Europe- NY Times 'The “prepositioned” stocks — to be stored on allied bases and enough to equip a brigade of 3,000 to 5,000 soldiers — would be similar to what the United States maintained in Kuwait for more than a decade after Iraq invaded it in 1990 and was expelled by American and allied forces early the next year'.

Foreign military equipment crossed the border of Hungary and Ukraine, said to be related to US-Ukraine joint exercises. However there is a speculation that Uragans could be transferred to Ukraine on those heavy military trucks, and the trucks themselves returned back. From a re-post on Cassad: "One of our readers sent to the Carpathian Vestnik magazine the photos below. The images were taken at a border checkpoint Záhony 06.09.2015 at noon on the Hungarian side. Special convoy of vehicles came from Ukraine. We tried to ask for information in the Border Police, but, unfortunately, we have not yet received an answer"

A law is introduced in Rada which would fully [block all goods transfer to Novorossia including first necessities, food, and medicine according to commentaries of Medvedchuk, Plotniskii quoted by Rusvesna.

12.6 Concerns grow over possible escalation in Transnistria over border transit closure with Ukraine, heavy weapons moved to Odessa, foreign advisers and Saakashvilli on hand: described in an article 'war in Transnistria may start on Day of Russia (June 12 )'--(well, or on any other day thereafter)

11.6 Offensive weapons: The US Senate has "included provisions in its military policy bill to arm Ukraine with anti-armor systems, mortars, grenade launchers and ammunition to aid in its fight against Russian-backed separatists. It would also prevent the administration from spending more than one half of $300 million in aid for Ukraine unless 20 percent is earmarked for offensive weapons. The House has passed a similar measure" -NY Times

Poroshenko appoints new Kievan-Donetsk regional head Pavlo Zhebrivskyi, lots of military fatigues posturing during Donetsk visit. Economic blockade of Novorossia to continue

10.6 'US envoy (Samantha Power) meets Poroshenko as concerns for Ukraine grow'- reliefweb ,president.gov.ua . Powers cites not knowing true Putin intentions to call for more sanctions on Russia

The U.S. House passes amendments to the "Department of Defense Appropriations Act of 2015" that prohibit the sending of MANPADS to Ukraine and the training of the Azov Battalion which the initiator John Conyers called "repulsive" and characterized as "neo-Nazi".

40 violations of ceasefire by Ukraine reported, MLRS, tan fire, mortars, small arms used.

9.6 Blockade of Transnistria reported-imports, exports, and people movement blocked by Ukraine; Ukrainian military presence at the border reported to be increased.

Gorlovka shelled, 5 houses destroyed, 2 civilians wounded

'Donetsk, Luhansk self-proclaimed republics ready to remain part of Ukraine'-TASS, and without proposing an amendment on Crimea (listed as Ukrainian in Ukrainian constitution. Republics say that this is not an issue in their competence). The West and Ukrainian media pretend that did not happen (Ukrainian media: even militants consider Crimea part of Ukraine--dropping the rest of the story).

Proposed changes to constitution of Ukraine. Briefly, self-rule for LPR and DPR -being able to decide themselves all important local issues ( economy, public order,cross-border cooperation, language, etc); keeping current elected leaders and deciding this themselves in the future; dropping time limitations in the Ukrainian law on special order of local self-governance; non-block status for Ukraine (i.e no NATO). Ukraine is supposed to promote cooperation aimed at economic development of the region,-details to be negotiated in separate economic agreements.
LPR, DPR announced that they are dropping parts of amendments mentioning Crimea, ask to adopt the rest without delay.
Ukraine pretended that everything is recalled by LPR/DPR, not just the Crimea part
On 17.3 Rada adopted changes to law on special governance, saying that special governance will start after special elections based on laws of Ukraine

Graham Phillips post (POW Roman Mashchenko)

Meanwhile in Bavaria

7.6 G-7 meeting. At G-7 meeting, Obama’s primary task is confronting his Putin problem- Washington Post

6.6. It is reported that Heidi Tagliavini will step down. DPR expressed regret. Replacement not named yet.

A few hundred protesters gathered near the building of Lvov regional state administration with banners "Special status for Galicia!", "Poroshenko needs to answer!" "Where Is Europe?" The main demands of protesters – to make Poroshenko answer before the people of Ukraine for the critical condition of the country. And demands of a special status for Galicia report, photos; -translated at Fort Rus

5.6. 9 civilians, 35 DPR soldiers killed in one week

Zakharchenko statement and forward-looking statement. Says they were attacked, counter-attack, and gained a bit of ground. Considers this not to be violation of Minsk as they were attacked.

3.6 As of time of the report, 5 civilians are killed, 24 wounded; 14 NAF soldiers are killed, 86 wounded. Twenty civilian houses were damaged by UAF shelling in Donetsk.

All water supplies are cut to Luhansk by Ukraine

Basurin: "We do not conduct offensive operations" TASS-English

Deteriorated situation, casualties reported. UAF used heavy weapons. Intense shelling or fighting in Mar'inka near Donetsk reported (conflicting reports, with sides blaming each other).

Basurin report, describes this as provocation by UAF. State Department blames opolchenie and Russia. Kremlin expressed concern with deteriorating situation.
Opolchenie reports: Ukrainian forces attempted to break through DPR positions in Mar'inka and Spartak (north Donetsk); were repelled and counter-attacked. Ukraine used tank fire, Grads, artillery (those were not supposed to be there by Minsk agreement, and Ukraine notified partners about the violation. Subsequent developments appear to head back to observing Minsk)
Lavrov: "Minsk agreement on February 12, is under constant threat of failure because of the actions of the Kiev authorities, trying to escape from their obligations to establish a direct dialogue with the Donbas"
Cyberberkut published details, photos, of earlier UAF violations-those were known to Ukraine and the West.
UN Security Council meeting announced this Friday, requested by Lithuania
OSCE SMM report,3.6.15

1.6 Donetsk shelled by UAF , about 20 explosions heard