Ukraine news/Archive/2016-02

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February, 2016

28.2 DPR violations update: In the last day, Ukrainian security forces have shelled 120 times the territory of the Republic as a result of 36 violations of the ceasefire. In the mortar attack by UAF, one DPR soldier was wounded. - a spokesman said. According to the Defense Ministry, the enemy fired ten times the 120-mm mortars, 35 times - 82 mm caliber mortars, 31 times - BMP (armored infantry vehicle) guns. Various types of rocket-propelled grenades, anti-aircraft installations guns and small arms were also used. "Orders to conduct attacks were given by Ukrainian criminals Zhakun and Klotchkov, from the positions of the 14 and 93 OMBR "(detached mechanized brigade) - added to the Defense Ministry. According to the Ministry, the shelling was directed at DPR position in Peski, Krasnogorovka, Nevelsk, Zhovanka, Avdeevka and Opytnoe. Under fire were: controlled by the DPR part of the village Zaytsevo near Gorlovka, Yasinovataya, the suburbs and the outskirts of Donetsk, including settlements Staromykhailivka, Zhabichevo, villages Spartak, Veseloe, the vicinity of the airport and "Volvo-Center".

Similar number of violations by UAF occur daily, with no end in sight. Ukrainian reports blame the rebels instead; Western media either does not report this at all, or take Ukrainian side.

27.2 Earlier report of Yatseniuk resignation was denied.

Yurii Dement, a businessman, long time friend and supporter of mayor of Kharkov Kernes is killed in Kharkov (paid for Kernes treatment when Kernes was wounded in an assassination attempt).

26.2 Western suburbs of Donetsk shelled by UAF. (Again). DAN news

25.2 Contact group finished work in Minsk, with more meetings planned; FM Normandy format meeting in Paris on March 3 -DAN news

le Parisien: Four truckloads of clothing left Thursday for Ukraine from Saint-Quentin-Fallavier (Isère), in suburbs of Lyon, on the initiative of the Red Cross who deplores indifference to this long conflict. These clothes provided by a large retail chain, are intended to around 13.000 Ukrainians among the 1.6 million displaced victims of the Russian-Ukrainian war. "The purpose of this action is to alert the public," said Antoine Peigney, Director of Relations and International Operations of the French Red Cross. "The resonance of this humanitarian crisis is too small for us to collect enough money" to help the victims of the conflict, he told reporters when loading trucks. Since the Minsk agreements, the Ukrainian crisis has almost disappeared from the media. The Red Cross is based in Zaporizhia region close to the conflict zone, which hosts more than 100,000 displaced. Getty images photo.

24.2 UAF violates Minsk agreements, occupies neutral zone, Shirokino and outskirts of Avdeevka captured - report, based on Ukrainian sources (e.g here on TSN.ua )

23.2 Fighting, shelling reports near Donetsk, Gorlovka, Yasinovataia. UAF [usvesna.su/news/1456263529 claims] that it pushed opolochenie away from suburbs of Avdeevka (map) (violating Minsk agreements).

Some civilians still remain on Maidan.

22.2 Tent city was partially removed, after a reported agreement with ATO veterans. Azov battalion attacked third Maidan protesters near a shopping center "Globus"

Maidan ('nedomaidan') demands published. Includes impeachment of current authorities, as well as denunciation of Minsk agreements, and going on basis of Budapest memorandum 'with participation of Poland and Turkey'.

21.2 Shelling by UAF count: 839 for the last week -DAN news

The broadcasting of the French documentary "Masks of the Revolution" on Polish TV channel TVN24 causes a controversy.

20.2

Revolutionary Right Wing Forces set Maidan headquarters in the hotel Kazatskii. They plan a veche (public gathering) at 5 pm on Sunday. Stress that their actions are peaceful (and as they claim, legal). Representatives of voluntary battalions (including Aidar, OUN, etc), and of some civilian movements participate in headquarters activity

Third Maidan? In Kiev, Kreshatik street was blocked by camouflaged protesters, first tent appeared. Protesters are said to be from voluntary battalions arriving from ATO zone. Political demands are said to be: resignation of president and the government, and immediate withdrawal from Minsk agreements - Rusvesna. Does not seem to be a large crowd (at the moment).

18.2 Samopomosh ('self-help') party left the ruling coalition, lead by Poroshenko block. Coalition lost majority as a result, according to reports -TASS

According to the Head of the press service of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Vladislav Seleznev, unknown persons used drones to attack and set fire at an ammunition storage in Zaporozhskaya region of Ukraine. Firearms and anti-aircraft weapons were used, but there are no reports of any downed drowns -Rusvesna

Loud explosion in Luhansk; it is said that possibly a large drone or a missile was shot down; details unconfirmed -Rusvesna

17.2 Russia files lawsuit against Ukraine to London court for non-payment of $3 bln loan- TASS (Eng.)

Yulia Timoshenko left the Rada coalition, called to reformat the whole political process in Ukraine, apparently positioning herself in pursuit of future political ambitions -report and video (Russian/Ukrainian). She announced (Junge Welt / German) to form a new party together with former SBU head Nalyvaichenko. Both had been to Washington in early February to meet with several high-profile politicians including John McCain and Victoria Nuland.

Freight train was derailed by explosion near Yasinovataia. Track and train damage but no casualties. Repair work under way. Normally, empty wagons go to DPR, coal, ore, steel products go the other way.

16.2 Work of Yatseniuk government was voted to be unsatisfactory, but no-confidence motion failed -TASS, report and photo

Poroshenko block considers the work of the government to be unsatisfactory -interfax; prepared to vote for no confidence, if such vote is to happen.

Continued shelling of Donetsk, 2 houses destroyed. Gorlovka shelled as well.

15.2 After several days of activist-driven blockage and obstruction of Russian truck traffic in Ukraine, it became official: Ukraine Stops Russian Truck Traffic Across Country - Cabinet of Ministers, Sputnik News. Earlier, 152 Ukrainian trucks were blocked in Russia in return. Destination of trucks may be Kazakhstan or elsewhere, not just Ukraine and Russia.

Russia bans truck traffic from Ukraine, except those going to Kazakhstan as a convoy -TASS

Continued reports of shelling of Donetsk by Ukraine, destroyed buildings. Ukraine shelled DPR 479 times in the past week

13.2 Donetsk, Gorlovka shelled by Ukraine. DPR shelled over 80 times in the past day.

12.2 Zakharchenko: Ukraine is ready for a full scale war, has 500 tanks and 90 thousand soldiers near the separation line

LPR: Ukrainian S-300, Strela-10 found near separation line.

10.2 A mini bus hit a landmine or IED in Marinskoe, Donetsk region, 3 people were killed and several wounded. Sides trade blame; it is said to happen at Ukrainian checkpoint, 600 m from DPR control

9.2 Political subgroup of Contact group is meeting in Minsk. Normandy format FM meeting expected in Munich , at the end of the week.

Saudi plan to invest $10 bln in Ukraine agriculture -TASS

Russia still produces, exports about 1.5-2 times more wheat than Ukraine...pp 7-8

8.2. Three people wounded, three civilians killed in DPR in the past week due to UAF shelling. 22 houses, a gas pipe line, and a school was damaged. DAN news. 882 violations , including 770 using heavy weapons. Over 200 pieces of equipment moved by UAF towards separation line, including 2 "Uragan" MLRS.

6.2 Yatseniuk proposed to Rada to have a vote of confidence in his government; earlier stated that the government works as one team, resisting changes brought from outside.

5.2 Zakharchenko: big increase in shelling by Ukraine, 'tens of times higher'

4.2 Porosheko announced plans to 'restart' the government

As reported, Dominique Strauss-Kahn accepted a job on Supervisory Board of Credit Dnepr bank, controlled by Ukrainian oligarch Pinchuk

3.2 Ukraine's Economic Development Minister Aivaras Abromavicius, a Lithuanian who came to Ukraine with the wave of foreign technocrats, resigns naming Poroshenko crony and MP Igor Kononenko as the main person who interfered with his anti-corruption work. "The forces of evil want to rewind it all back", he stated. Hours later his deputy Nataliya Mykolska resigns as well Resignation statement video.

Than, a few hours later, Poroshenko asked Abromavicius to stay, saying that the issues he raised has to be investigated by the national anti-corruption bureau. As reported, after meeting with Poroshenko Abromavicius took some time to consider. On the next day, Kononenko, assistant head of Poroshenko block in Rada, steps down for the time being while the matter is investigated.
However, it appears that Abromavicius stays resigned, regardless. It is said that he no longer attends Rada sessions, for fear of violence.

Poroshenko interview to Bild. Repeating usual lines, and in addition, wants weapons from Germany; in the Russian press it is stated that he wants troops from Germany.

2.2 A woman is wounded in Gorlovka-DAN news. Over 10 houses damaged.

Donetsk was shelled, too. There was a report of a firefight near former Volvo center in Donetsk. It is said that a Ukrainian reconnaissance and sabotage group was destroyed by "Vostok" battalion detachment.

1.2 Ukraine shelled DPR 990 times in the last week, including 669 times from heavy weapons-Basurin.

Joint DPR, LPR statement. '...Tomorrow Rada session will finish its work, likely without adopting constitutional amendments on decentralization. Ukraine continues non-fulfillment of Minsk agreements. Even if by a miracle the amendment, unilaterally prepared by Kiev, will be adopted, to report to European colleagues on the job done, we remind that amendments were not agreed with Donbass, and not considered by us to be fulfilling the packet of measures required...' The statement also calls to adopt in full a law on special status for Donbass.

French TV channel canal+ broadcasts Paul Moreira's documentary "Les masques de la revolution" (French with English subtitles, Russian dubbed over French version, with German subtitles) after the Ukrainian foreign ministry and their ambassador to France tried to pressure the channel into cancelling the broadcast, calling its critical view on Maidan and the following events "deception", "misinformation" and "Russian propaganda".

At the end of the film, it is highlighted that at the 12-th annual "Yes" ("Yalta" European Strategy) meeting in Kiev, Sept. 2015, participants included former generals David Petraeus (advocating giving Ukraine anti-tank weapons), Stanley McChrystal, -both quickly escaping the reporter-as well as Dominique Strauss-Kahn, and Bernard-Henri Lévy