News from Novorossiya

Thursday, April 27, 2017
(Brief update)

Alexander Zakharchenko (–SouthFront)

Zakharchenko signed a decree on establishment of DPR representation in JCCC / Novorossiya Vision / April 27, 2017 / The Head of the DPR, Alexander Zakharchenko, decided to create an executive authority body of special competence – the representation of the Donetsk People’s Republic at the Joint Center for the Control and Coordination of the ceasefire (JCCC). The relevant decree was published on the official portal of the Republic. ‘To create a national executive authority of the DPR of special competence, such as the representation of the Donetsk People’s Republic at the Joint Control and Coordination Center and in the negotiation process. To appoint Ruslan Khalilovich Yakubov (the head of the DPR operational command headquarters) as the head of the Representative Office,’ says the document. According to the decree, the main tasks of the mission are the monitoring of compliance with the agreements on the implementation of the Minsk Agreements; interaction with the Ukrainian and Russian parties in the JCCC; interaction with the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission; participation in the settlement of disputes related to the implementation of the Minsk Agreements and assistance in their implementation; participation in the negotiation process on the implementation of the Minsk Agreements. The Head of the Republic will personally supervise the execution of the decree. The document comes into force from the date of its signing, April 18, 2017.

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Donetsk Situation Report, 26.04.2017 / Novorossia Vision / April 27, 2017 / Over the past day, the Armed Forces of Ukraine violated the ceasefire 54 times. The territory of the Republic was shelled with artillery, mortars, tanks, grenade launchers, infantry fighting vehicles, armored personnel carriers, anti-aircraft systems and small arms. The most intensive shelling was applied by the Ukrainian military to the area of the localities Krutaya Balka, Yasinovataya, Yakovlevka, Zhabichevo, Spartak and the airport of Donetsk city. From the positions of the 72nd separate mechanized brigade and the 46th separate airborne assault brigade of the AFU on aforementioned areas, there were launched 354 82 and 120mm mortar shells, 184 grenades of various types and made 3 rounds from tanks. The war criminals of the 53rd separate mechanized brigade and the 25th separate airmobile brigade of the AFU launched on the area of the localities Zaytsevo, Shirokaya Balka and Zheleznaya Balka, 36 mortar shells of various caliber and 129 grenades. From the positions of the 92nd separate mechanized brigade of the AFU, there were launched 3 122mm artillery shells, 2 tank shells and 63 82 and 120mm mortar shells. There were also actively used various types of grenade launchers and small arms on the localities Dokuchaevsk, Yasnoye and the Petrovsky district of Donetsk city. As a result of the shelling, there was damaged a multi-storey house in the locality of Dokuchaevsk, N 98 in Lenina St. In addition, from the positions of the 36th separate Marine brigade of the AFU, there were launched 32 82 and 120mm mortar shells and used small arms on the area of the localities Kominternovo, Novaya Tavria, Oktyabr, Sakhanka and Leninskoye. As a result of the mortar shelling of our positions by the AFU, there was killed one soldier and another two wounded. Moreover, over the past day, there were wounded four civilians. *** Our intelligence continues to record the strengthening of the enemy’s grouping of troops. In particular, on the edge of the locality of Avdeevka, in yards in the residential area, there were detected 6 tanks of the 72nd separate mechanized brigade; there was detected the arrival of a train in the locality of Selidovo (28 km away from the contact line), with 4 MLRS «Grad», 12 tanks, 10 armored fighting vehicles and 25 pieces of motor equipment. In addition, we recorded the work of UAVs used to spot mortar crews fire and conduct reconnaissance of our positions. Over the past day, there were recorded 8 UAVs in the area of the localities Gorlovka, Yasinovataya, Kominternovo and the Petrovsky district of Donetsk city. The Ukrainian side continues its course aimed at destabilizing the situation and terrorizing the peaceful population of the Republic. The Ukrainian terrorists, without hesitation, purposefully and during the daytime, strike at residential areas, knowing that people will be outside. As a result of the mortar shelling of the Petrovsky district of Donetsk by the Ukrainian military, the spouses Butenko Alexander born in 1955 and Butenko Svetlana born in 1957, were wounded in explosions of 82mm mortar shells in Chekhova St, and Korolchuk Konstantin born in 1981 in Shestakovs St. In addition, yesterday, Osadchy Andrey born in 1967, was wounded as a result of an explosive device detonated by the Ukrainian military in places used by the civilian population to approach reservoirs. This is nothing short of frank terror against the peaceful population of Donbass. How, at present, is the Ukrainian army different from the terrorist organization ISIS which is banned all over the world? *** Despite the arrival of Erturul Apakan, the head of the OSCE SMM in Ukraine, to investigate the death of the OSCE members, and the upcoming meeting of the Contact Group in Minsk, the Ukrainian side has not only increased the intensity of shelling our positions, but is also purposefully aiming at civilians. All this suggests one thing, namely that Ukraine is not interested in a peaceful solution to this protracted conflict, but, at the same time, accuses us of this. The development of events in Donbass is hard to predict if the world community does not pay attention to Ukraine, a newly developing terrorist state, in the power departments of which serve, without hiding, open nationalists prepared by professionals from Western countries. –Vice-Commander of the DPR Defense Ministry operative command Donetsk,Colonel Eduard Basurin

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Ertuğrul Apakan

Ukrainian army shells LPR during OSCE SMM Chief Monitor’s visit / Essence of Time / April 26, 2017 / On April 26, the Ukrainian side shelled the territory of the Lugansk People’s Republic (the LPR) while Ertuğrul Apakan, Chief Monitor of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine was visiting the LPR, the LPR People’s Militia official representative, lieutenant-colonel Andrey Marochko stated during his briefing at the Lugansk Information Centre. Marochko says, “Knowing that the OSCE SMM Chief Monitor to Ukraine Ertuğrul Apakan is present on the territory of the Republic with a working visit, the Ukrainian military violated the ceasefire five times.” He explained that these actions are a provocation, as the shelling was conducted from the close to socially significant facilities. The People’s Militia representative stated, “Yesterday at 9:30 p.m. from the territory of the high pressure gas-distributing station in the community of Lobachevo, the Ukrainian military launched an attack using grenade launchers and small arms. After no return fire followed, they repeated their provocation at 10:30 p.m. This time they used an 82mm mortar.” On April 23, one officer from the OSCE mission was killed, and another one was wounded after their car struck a landmine in the LPR. Consequently, the OSCE SMM Chief Monitor to Ukraine Ertuğrul Apakan went to see the place of the incident on LPR territory near the community of Pryshyb. Apakan’s goal, according to him, was to provide support to the observers and to better understand the situation. Speaking about his colleague’s death, the OSCE SMM Chief Monitor to Ukraine stated that despite the tragedy, they are committed to fulfill their mandate and secure peace for the people of Ukraine. —Source: Rossa Primavera News Agency

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Wednesday, April 26, 2017
(Brief update)

Lugansk officials blame Ukraine and OSCE violations for observer’s death / By J. Arnoldski / Fort Russ / April 26, 2017 / On Sunday, April 23rd, an OSCE Special Monitoring Mission car was blown up along the Slavyanoserbsk-Sokolniki route in the area of the village of Prishib, Lugansk People’s Republic. While the Ukrainian side has blamed the incident on “separatist” disruption of the Minsk Agreements and urged the international community to deploy an armed peacekeeping mission to Donbass, the Lugansk People’s Republic has voiced its own account of events. The Ministry of State Security of the Lugansk People’s Republic has released a statement which reads: “On April 23rd, during the first half of the day, a land mine blew up an OSCE car on a country road in the village of Prishib in the Slavyanoserbsk district. One was killed and three were wounded. There were two crews in total, but the second OSCE vehicle was not affected. According to the official version of the Ministry of State Security of the LPR, this was an operation prepared by a Ukrainian reconnaissance and sabotage group.” The LPR’s authorized representative to the Minsk negotiations, Vladislav Deynego, has commented on the incident: “The circumstances are not yet clear, and an investigation is being conducted, but at the moment the following is clear. The car was driving along a country road between the residential areas of Prishib and Smeloe. First the patrol of two cars went in the direction of Smeloe, carried out some kind of assignments there, and, while on the way back, the main car was hit on the rear right . . . READ MORE>>

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Click to enlarge. Verkhovna Rada member Tymchuk’s alleged timeline for OSCE car blast, April 23, 2017.

Kiev, West Begin Framing Russia in OSCE Car Blast Case / By Kennedy Applebaum / Quemado Institute / April 26, 2017 / Evidence is emerging that the Kiev and Western propaganda peddlers on Twitter are beginning to set up a scenario to frame Russia in the case of the car explosion that killed one OSCE observer on April 23. This follows on the heels of the US White House announcement that a full investigation is needed, and the the OSCE should head that inquiry. Now the ground work is being laid in “social media”—which are heavily relied upon for such “investigations”—to incriminate Russia. This is the same pattern that emerged on Twitter following the July 17, 2014 crash of the Malaysian Airliner Flight MH17. Studying the subject daily over the next year, I saw numerous tweets that seemed to offer “evidence” Russia had supplied the Donbass militias with the Buk missile that shot down the Boeing 777, replete with unprofessionally hacked photos of Buk missile trailors apparently driving on Donetsk roadways, and maps of the Buk’s improbable route from the Russian border. At the time, I thought these tweets were nonsense and didn’t believe anyone could take them seriously. Yet a web of allegations incriminating Russia and possibly Igor Strelkov began to coalesce into a broad and comprehensive fabrication. Then, to my surprise, the Dutch Safety Board MH17 investigation team used this very social media “evidence” to substantiate its probably false finding that a Buk missile indeed shot down Flight MH17, when many eye witnesses say otherwise. Now, today, I see tweets that are beginning to create a fabricated web regarding the OSCE observer’s death last Sunday. The following appeared on Twitter at 15:30 UTC today. Unknown enemy source Michael MacKay tweeted: “Sunday, an American was killed in Russia-occupied Ukraine. Russian TV arrived only 3 minutes after explosion. Dmitry Tymchuk gives timeline.” See photo above showing Tymchuk’s alleged timeline for the OSCE blast respose. ThunderBirdKY replies: “There’s simply no way they weren’t informed beforehand, some of the best ambulance services on the planet can’t respond that quickly.” Michael MacKay answers: “Pryshyb is a small village, on a bad road. I’ve driven through it. It’s 38 km/24 miles from Luhansk city. A 3 minute response is incredible.” The key accusation here is that RT knew about the car blast beforehand, implying Russian involvement. Note that the timeline was created by Ukrainian politician Dmitry Tymchuk. According to Wikipedia and other sources, Tymchuk is “a Member of the Parliament of Ukraine (Verkhovna Rada), a Ukrainian military expert and blogger, an officer of Ukrainian military reserve, and one of the coordinators of the Information Resistance blog. During the ongoing 2014 pro-Russian unrest in Ukraine, he became one of the most popular Ukrainian online activists and was extensively cited on the situation in the country…. In November 2014, the number of those following his Facebook page exceeded 190,000 IP addresses.” If Tymchuk’s timeline is correct—and judging by the fabrications surrounding MH17, there is no reason to believe it is—it only means that RT journalists happened to be the area, which, given it is close to the contact line, might not be unreasonable. There were similar reasonable explanations for every piece of false evidence tweeted about the MH17 tragedy. This did not stop the Dutch Safety Board from taking those tweets seriously.

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OSCE rejects going into Donbass armed, Kiev saddened / By Inessa Sinchougova (RusVesna) / Fort Russ / April 26, 2017 / Arming the observers of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission (SMM) in the Donbass does not help to ensure their safety, said the deputy head of the SMM observer team, Arne Dalhaug. “It is important to understand that arming observers will not help in the threat that we constantly face. For example, a mine, like the that exploded on Sunday.” Dalhaug said that any changes to the mandate of the OSCE will be made by the Permanent Council in Vienna. “Any changes to our mandate will be made by the Permanent Council in Vienna. At the moment, there is no mention about the introduction of armed missions,” he said. Fort Russ Editor: Meanwhile, the Poroshenko regime suggested that armed missions is what should be done. Ukraine has rushed to seize the moment and extract maximum political gain from the death of an American. Kiev insists on the deployment of an international peacekeeping force to the Donbass.

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Donbass war will be discussed today in Minsk / Novorossia Today / April 26, 2017 / The next meeting of the Contact Group on Ukraine will be held in Minsk, just a few days after the tragic incident in Donbass, where an OSCE mission officer was killed in an anti-tank mine explosion. The Russian Foreign Ministry noted that the circumstances of the incident indicate a high probability of provocation aimed at undermining the peace process. Such incidents and a general escalation of tension, according to the Ministry, are beneficial for those who are not interested in implementing the political, economic and humanitarian provisions of the Package of Measures included in the Minsk Agreements. Boris Gryzlov, Russia’s representative in the Contact Group, called the incident a diversion, noting that civilians could become victims of the explosion, and promised to review the tragic fact at the next meeting in Minsk. Earlier, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said at talks with OSCE Secretary-General Lamberto Zannier that Russia insists on a swift and impartial investigation into incident, when a vehicle of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission struck a mine in eastern Ukraine. “We will insist on a quick, transparent and impartial investigation involving the SMM (Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine – TASS), the Contact Group and the Joint Center for Ceasefire Control and Coordination,” Lavrov said, stressing that there is the need to continue “working in all trajectories.” On April 23, an OSCE SMM car drove over an anti-tank mine near the village of Prishib in the Lugansk People’s Republic (LPR). An American paramedic who was part of the patrol was killed and two other SMM monitors, citizens of the Czech Republic and Germany, sustained wounds. The situation in Donbass is getting worse again. On April 25, three civilians wounded as a result of military actions.

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Lugansk Defense: Situation Report, 04/26/2017 / DONi News / April 26, 2017 / Situation in the responsibility zone of the LPR People’s Militia has deteriorated. Knowing that the OSCE SMM Chief to Ukraine Ertuğrul Apakan is present on the territory of the Republic with a working visit, there were registered five occasions of ceasefire violations on the part of Ukrainian military. Besides, all shellings were provocative and conducted from the areas of essential facilities. Thus, yesterday at 09:30 p.m. Ukrainian provocateurs conducted fire with automatic grenade launchers, anti-tank grenade launchers and a weapon system from the area of location of a gas-distributing plant of high pressure. When there was no backfire, they (Ukrainian military) repeated their provocation at 10:30 p.m. applying 82mm mortars. Positions of our units underwent shelling in the vicinities of the localities of LOGVINOVO, SMELOYE, NIZHNEYE LOZOVOYE and Zheltoye. While shellings, there were applied prohibited mortars of . . . READ MORE>>

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Train with heavy UAF equipment arrives at station 30 km from Donetsk / WeapoNews.com / Edited by Quemado Institute / April 26, 2017 / Deputy commander of the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) operational command Colonel Eduard Basurin reported that, according to DPR intelligence, a Ukrainian train arrived at the Selidovo station carrying military equipment, including tanks and MLRS. The Donetsk news Agency quotes the message Basurin: “Marked the arrival of the train in Selidovo (about 30 km West of Donetsk), on the platform, which shipped four MLRS Grad, 12 tanks, 10 armored combat vehicles, 25 units of motor vehicles.” In addition, the DPR’s intelligence reports on the location of several Ukrainian Armed Forces (UAF) tanks in the private sector on the outskirts of Avdeevka. That’s where Ukrainian troops applied constant strikes on the territory of the Donetsk People’s Republic, hidden amidst civil infrastructure. The tanks arrived in the town from the UAF 72nd separate mechanized brigade. LPR Spokesman Colonel Marochko told the media that the people’s militia of the Republic of Lugansk ousted a Ukrainian unit near the village of Sokolniki. Recall that, according to LPR intelligence, a sabotage and reconnaissance group abandoned that area of the Republic prior to blasting of the car of the special representatives of the monitoring group of the OSCE. Marochko: “During search activities, our scouts found it (DRG) at 22:00 in one of the abandoned houses. After the failure of the saboteurs from the surrender of weapons, the battle began [sic]. At the same time from the territory controlled by the Ukrainian forces, the enemy began to support a breakthrough of a sabotage group with intense fire from AGS-17 and a heavy machine gun.” Under fire cover, the enemy managed to escape in the direction of the village of Crimea on the territory controlled by the UAF.

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‘Direct Interference’: Why US Military Instructors Stay On in Ukraine’s Donbass / Sputnik / April 26, 2017 / The arrival of US military instructors in eastern Ukraine’s Donbass region indicates Washington’s “direct interference” in the Ukrainian conflict, Russian military expert Viktor Baranets told Sputnik. In an interview with Sputnik, Russian military expert Viktor Baranets described the arrival of US military instructors in Donbass as direct White House interference in the Ukrainian conflict. Earlier, the Defense Ministry of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) reported the arrival of American military instructors in the conflict zone in Donbass. “The arrival of military instructors from the United States in the area of the so-called anti-terrorist operation [in Donbass] has been tracked, ATO has been established,” DPR Deputy Defense Minister Eduard Basurin said, adding that “one of the goals of the arrival of US instructors was to check the readiness of Ukrainian Armed Forces for combat operations.” Speaking to Sputnik, Viktor Baranets pointed to the fact that the American instructors had worked in Ukraine in previous months and that they are currently being rotated in. “American instructors were in place there from the very beginning, and they were endorsed by the Security Service of Ukraine. What’s more, the US instructors trained servicemen from the Ukrainian Armed Forces who were deployed to the Donetsk front line,” Baranets said. According to him, “foreign military hardware was also supplied to the Ukrainian servicemen” who were stationed . . . READ MORE>>

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Trump Doubts that Russia Controls Donbass – VIDEO / Pravda Report / February 7, 2017 / The US President Donald Trump has doubted that the Donbass militia is controlled by Russia. The US President expressed his point of view during an interview with the Fox News Channel. Trump answered a question of the host Bill O’Reilly on whether he was not insulted by escalation on the east of Ukraine due to pro-Russian forces the next day after he had carried out a phone talk with the Russian President Vladimir Putin. The US leader responded negatively. He explained that he refused to see any direct connection between acts of militia and Russia. Beside that, Trump claimed, that the US did not know for sure what was going on in Ukraine, and it should be found out. Before that, Head of the Ukrainian General Staff Viktor Muzhenko admitted that there were no regular Russian troops in the territory of the country. Later, the OSCE Secretary General Lamberto Zannier also noted that there were no Russian troops in Donbass, having aroused perplexity on the Kiev authorities, which still assure that Russian special forces act in the territory of Donbass. Click image for video.

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Tuesday, April 25, 2017
(Full report)

Click for video.

Donetsk Defense: Situation Report, 04/25/2017 / DONi News / April 25, 2017 / Over the past day, there were registered 30 occasions of ceasefire violations by the Armed Forces of Ukraine. The Republic’s territory was shelled with mortars, grenade launchers, infantry fighting vehicles, armoured personnel carriers, and small arms. 61 mortar shells of 82mm and 120mm calibre and 220 ammos from various types of grenade launchers were launched onto the areas of Krutaya Balka, Yasinovataya, Spartak and the former Donetsk airport from the positions of the 72nd separate mechanized AFU brigade. The Petrovsky district of Donetsk was underwent a shelling from the positions of the 92nd separate mechanized brigade. The enemy launched 13 mortar shells of 82mm calibre and 90 ammos from portable and automatic grenade launchers. In addition, war criminals from the 53rd, 30th separate mechanized brigades, 25th airborne brigade and 36th separate marine brigade shelled the areas of Zaitsevo, Gorlovka, Ozeryanovka, Kominternovo, Sakhanka and Leninskoye localities with small arms. One residential house in Zaitsevo locality on Latsis Street, 36, sustained damage, the Republic’s territory having been shelled by the AFU. As a result of a mortar shelling of the Petrovsky district of Donetsk, two civilians were wounded: Butenko Alexander Nikolayevich, born in 1955, and Butenko Svetlana Vladimirovna, born in 1957. *** Our sources detected the arrival of military instructors from the United States to the units’ bases located in the so-called ‘ATO’ zone with a view to participate in the inspection of the earlier transferred military property. Our reconnaissance established that this was not the only goal of the commission’s arrival. Thus, in the 92nd separate mechanized brigade, the readiness for combat operations is being verified, as well as the results of the earlier arrived military instructors’ work in this brigade. At that, in one of inner circles of Ukraine’s military and political authorities, one of the versions of such an unexpected inspection is being voiced: data preparation for the decision on lethal weapons’ allocation to Ukraine. But, preliminary conclusions of the commission’s work are already clear, as the US reduces Ukraine’s financing by more than 3 times, according to this day’s reports in Western media. According to a source in the Military Law Enforcement . . . READ MORE>>

OSCE Mission Car Blast in Donbass: Accidental Explosion or ‘False Flag’ by Kiev? / Sputnik / April 25, 2017 / Sunday’s destruction of an OSCE Special Monitoring Mission vehicle in eastern Ukraine comes at a moment that’s suspiciously convenient for Kiev, Ukrainian and Russian observers say, particularly as the US and European countries consider a significant reduction in assistance to their Ukrainian partners. On Sunday, a two vehicle convoy from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) carrying out monitoring in the eastern Ukrainian breakaway region of Lugansk was struck, destroying one of the vehicles. The deadly incident, thought by OSCE chairman Sebastian Kurz to have been the result of a mine blast, killed one US national and injured two OSCE staff members from Germany and the Czech Republic. The Security Service of Ukraine immediately opened a criminal investigation into the incident. Ukraine’s Ministry of Defense, meanwhile, has claimed that authorities from the Donbass breakaways were responsible. Shortly after the attack, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko spoke to US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson. The president proposed introducing UN peacekeepers into the war-torn region, and accused Russia, which is a guarantor, but not a party to the Minsk peace agreements, of failing to fulfill the deal’s provisions. Kiev officials also used the attack to propose that OSCE observers in Ukraine be armed, notwithstanding the fact that the organization’s monitoring mission obliges them to maintain their neutrality. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov commented on the attack by insisting on the need for a “prompt, impartial, transparent investigation.” Russia’s Foreign Ministry has also issued a separate statement saying that “the circumstances of the incident indicate a high probability of a provocation aimed at undermining the peaceful settlement process in Donbass.” Speaking to Radio Sputnik, political scientist Rostislav Ischenko, president of the Ukraine-based Center for Systemic Analysis, stressed that although he was confident that authorities from the Lugansk People’s Republic (LPR) would allow Ukrainian investigators to conduct their investigation into the blast, together with other international investigators, it remains unclear whether Kiev will take advantage of such an invitation, since they do not recognize LPR authorities as a legitimate party for negotiations. More significant, according to the analyst, was the fact that the blast took place at a . . . READ MORE>> [extensive analysis]. Editor’s note: See related article at mianews.ru: Two more mines were found on the site of the bombing of the OSCE car near the city Lugansk

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Ukrainian Army Continues its Advance into Donbass / By Zorana Dobriza / Global Research / April 25, 2017 / OSCE Observers Became Victims of Another Ukrainian Armed Forces Diversion in the Donbass. / The Ukrainian army continues to increase its activity in the east of the country in the combat zone between the Ukrainian armed forces and the Luhansk People’s Republic’s units. Thus, in the morning of April 23 a patrol vehicle of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission (SMM) blew up on a mine in not controlled by Kiev Slavyanoserbsky district of the Lugansk region. As a result of the explosion, a US citizen working as a medical officer of the mission was killed and two mission employees were injured. Being unable to conduct active armed actions, Kiev focused its efforts on asymmetric combat operations against the Donbass insurgents through sabotage actions. A.Marochko, an official representative of the People’s Militia of the Luhansk People’s Republic, said that the undermining of the cars of the OSCE mission is a terrorist act of Ukrainian special services that was committed by saboteurs of the 8th Special Regiment of Special Forces of the Special Operations Forces of the Ukrainian Armed Forces. The possibility of execution of such terroristic acts was previously officially announced by the Minister of State Security of the Luhansk People’s Republic L. Pasechnik. On February 4, 2017, he noted that the the People’s Militia of the Luhansk People’s Republic had information concerning the Ukrainian special services attempts to assassinate international mission personnel working in the Luhansk People’s Republic. S. Ivanchuk and I. Deyev, servicemen of the 8th Special Purpose Regiment of the Special Operations Forces of the Ukranian Armed Forces arrested in February being interrogated confirmed the fact that the Ukrainian Special Forces had the representatives of the OSCE shadowed. Major Ivanchuk, the head of the Ukrainian Group of Diversions and Reconnaissance confirmed during the interrogation that he had shadowed the movements of the OSCE staff and then had passed this information to the Ukrainian Security Service. He also admitted that the corresponding task was assigned to him by Colonel Sandursky known by the call sign “Khutor”, his curator from the Security Service. In the course of the engineering reconnaissance of the area conducted on April 24, 2017 by the units of the People’s Militia of the Luhansk People’s Republic at the zone of the diversion aimed at the crew of the OSCE, a so-called “lying place” organized by the Ukrainian Group of Diversions and Reconnaissance was identified at a distance of 500-700 meters from the indicated location. Based on the evidences found and the nature of the actions it was established that the group consisted of three people. The senior serviceman of the group was Major Goluzyak Sergey Vyacheslavovich from the 8th separate special regiment of the Special Operations Forces of the Ukrainian Armed Forces. It is noteworthy that at present units of the Ukrainian Armed Forces are being trained by military instructors from Poland, Lithuania and Denmark at the Yavoriv training ground in the Lviv region. The training of the Armed Forces is led by Colonel David Jordan of the US Armed Forces, who may become the head of the “OSCE peacekeeping mission” in the Donbass region. Undermining of the OSCE vehicle is another attempt to disrupt the Minsk settling process within the South-East of Ukraine which goal is to create preconditions for the unarmed OSCE troops entry to the territory of the unrecognized republics. The question is who from the Ukrainian governance will be able to provide guarantees for their security?

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OSCE begins internal probe into SMM car blast in Donbass / en.news-front.info / April 25, 2017 / The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) has launched an internal investigation into an explosion of a car that carried OSCE observers in the Donbass region, OSCE Secretary General Lamberto Zannier said on Tuesday following talks with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. According to Zannier, the Ukrainian crisis “was one of the key focuses of our debates today, also in light of the unfortunate incident that we had a couple of days ago, when we had the first victim in our operation.” “We are taking this very seriously,” he said. “I’m now setting an internal investigation. There will be also a criminal investigation to understand who are responsible for this outcome. There was a mine left on the road that is used also by civilians and the victims could have been others as well.” The OSCE calls on parties to the Ukrainian conflict to implement the agreement on demining. “It’s important to get all the sides to implement some of the agreements, including the agreement on demining,” he said. “It’s a terrible conflict and civilian . . . READ MORE>>

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Sergei Lavrov (–AP/Ivan Sekretarev)

Lavrov “pulled” Poroshenko: Minsk does not provide for the introduction of peacekeepers in Donbass / The NewsPapers / April 25, 2017 / The Minister of foreign Affairs of Russia Sergey Lavrov reacted to the idea of the President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko on the intensification of efforts in the Donbass peacekeepers of the United Nations. According to the head of Russian diplomacy, the placement of UN troops in the East of Ukraine contradict the Minsk agreements, on the contrary, they supported the role of the special monitoring mission of the OSCE. “He does a lot of statements, to me it is difficult to comment. All these statements are aimed only at one thing — to take responsibility for the signature Petro Poroshenko put under the Minsk agreements. Anything that is required to make the Ukrainian side is not done under various pretexts,” — said Lavrov on the results of negotiations with Secretary General of the Organization for security and cooperation in Europe Lamberto Zannier. Earlier, the press Secretary of the President of Russia Dmitry Peskov said that the issue of deployment of UN peacekeepers in the Donbass requires the consent of all parties to the armed conflict — the Ukrainian authorities and the leadership of the breakaway Donetsk and Lugansk national republics.

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OSCE mission resumes patrolling of Donbas / en.interfax.com.ua / April 25, 2017 / The OSCE Special Monitoring Mission (SMM) reported resumption of its activity on both sides of the Donbas contact line on Tuesday. “Today the OSCE SMM resumed its patrolling on both sides of the contact line in Donetsk and Luhansk regions,” the mission said on Facebook. “We continue to take mitigation measures to ensure our monitors’ security and safety are in place. The patrols are conducted with some restrictions due to an ongoing assessment of the events on Sunday morning,” the mission said. “The SMM remains committed to fulfilling its mandate and contributing to bringing peace to the people of Ukraine including through monitoring and reporting on the security situation. In order to fulfill this task the Mission needs safe, secure and unconditional access for the SMM monitors,” the mission said. It had been reported earlier that the OSCE SMM patrol vehicle had been blown up presumably by a landmine in the area of Luhansk region uncontrolled by Kyiv on April 23, A U.S. citizen was killed, and citizens of Germany and the Czech Republic suffered injuries. All OSCE SMM patrols were summoned back to base after that incident. [Source: en.interfax.com.ua/news/general/417875.html?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter]

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Lugansk Defense: Situation Report, 04/25/2017 / DONi News / April 25, 2017 / Situation in the responsibility zone of the LPR People’s Militia remains tense. Despite the declared by the Ukrainian side observance of the cease-fire regime, for the past day, the enemy committed one occasion of the ceasefire violations. As I reported earlier, last night a military clash took place with the enemy’s sabotage group in the vicinity of Sokolniki locality. None of the servicemen of the LPR People’s Militia suffered. During the investigation conducted by the security forces of the Lugansk People’s Republic, one saboteur was wounded. A route along which a subversive and reconnaissance group managed to cross the contact line and withdraw to the territory controlled by Ukraine has been established. Investigative actions on the site of the night clash continue. I note that the Ukrainian media interpret this fight as supposedly staged. These statements were . . . READ MORE>>

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Dmitry Peskov (–Vladimir Astapkovich/Host photo agency)

Kiev’s Blackout for Lugansk Republic ‘Step Toward Rejection’ of Area – Kremlin / Sputnik / April 25, 2017 / Ukraine’s decision to de-energize the Lugansk People’s Republic is yet another step toward the rejection of the territory, which also contradicts the Minsk agreements, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Tuesday. He underscored that Moscow is doing its best to alleviate the humanitarian crisis in the war-torn Donbass republics. MOSCOW / On Tuesday, Russia’s representative to the Ukraine contact group said that Moscow decided to provide electricity to the Lugansk Republic after Kiev had cut the supplies citing debts. “The de-energization of the Lugansk region is another step on the path of Ukraine’s rejection of its territories. This is a step that contradicts the spirit of the Minsk agreements, which does not bring us closer to the implementation of these Minsk agreements, but rather distances us from the ultimate goal,” Peskov told journalists. “Certainly, Russia has always done and is doing a lot, for humanitarian reasons, to help minimize the consequences for people who live in Donbass,” he said. [More general background at source.]

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(–TheNewspapers.com)

LPR fully provided with electricity from local sources – Emergencies Ministry / Lugansk Media Center / April 25, 2017 / LPR is fully provided with electricity using its own sources, the Republic’s Emergencies Minister Sergey Ivanushkin said on Tuesday. “Yesterday, at 11:41 p.m. Ukraine stopped power supply via 220V LuTES-Kirovo and 380V LuTES-Mikhailovka transmission lines which feed the northern part of the region,” Ivanushkin said. “Forty minutes after the cutoff, power supply was restored to key Lugansk areas. By 2:20 a.m. we had fully switched over to our own power sources,” he said. “The power flow to Ukraine stopped; we fully operate on our energy. All the Republic has power supply.” “We accomplished it because electricity had been supplied to LPR from several directions. We refitted power lines, assessed new power supply schemes and connected Lugansk to internal power supply,” he went on. “We now use reserve sources which we initially planned to use in case of such cutoffs, because after 2014 we were aware that with this kind of treatment and shelling they would turn off both water and power supply. So we’ve made preparations since; the Republic is operating in a normal mode despite the Ukraine-imposed blockade.” “In 2014, transmission lines around Lugansk were cut; repairs were carried out without Ukraine. Now we have returned to the power supply plans prepared during the fighting back then,” Ivanushkin said.

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Russia to provide electricity to LPR / DONi News / April 25, 2017 / Russian Energy Ministry made a decision on LPR electricity supply by Russian Federation after Ukrainian energy supply cessation. The Ukrainian Ministry of Energy and Coal Industry and state enterprise “Energorynok” ceased the LPR power supply at midnight on April 25. “Such actions on the part of the Ukrainian government can cause the humanitarian catastrophe, that is why Russian Energy Ministry decided to provide electricity supply to the LPR from the Russian territory in frames of the humanitarian aid providing. It was managed to save the stable electricity supply level for the affected Lugansk region’s subscribers,” underlined the Ministry’s representative. It should be borne in mind that there are local power sources in Donetsk region (Zuevskaya and Starobeshevskaya thermal power plants), total capacity of which is quite enough to provide energy for the local consumption and to supply the affected Lugansk region’s territory. Russian Energy Ministry didn’t comment upon the LPR being supplied with Russian energy. Earlier the LPR Energy Ministry claimed that presently it provides the LPR electricity supply on their own with local sources.

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Ukraine, Korea, Syria, Iran… Falsifying History is Uncle Sam’s Way to War / By Finian Cunningham / Strategic Culture Foundation / April 23, 2017 / Russian President Vladimir Putin addressed the International Arctic Forum this week on the real and present dangers from falsifying history. He said such deliberate distortion of history erodes international law and order, creating chaos and leading to further conflict. The Russian leader deplored the use of history as an «ideological weapon» to demonize others, and he said that without proper understanding of history we are bound to repeat mistakes of the past. That also reminds one of the maxim Karl Marx once wrote: «History repeats itself first as tragedy, then as farce». As if on cue, while Putin was enumerating the dangers of false history, Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko was being hosted in London by British premier Theresa May during a two-day visit. The Kiev-based regime that Poroshenko leads came to power through an illegal, violent coup against an elected government in February 2014, with clandestine support from Washington and the European Union. The Ukrainian state military ever since have been waging a war on the eastern region of the country, resulting in a death toll of over 10,000 and up to a million displaced. All because the ethnic Russian population of the eastern Donbas region refuses to recognize the Kiev regime’s legitimacy owing to its illegal power grab three years ago. However, the way Poroshenko and the Kiev regime tells it, Ukraine is fighting off an invasion by Russia. The Ukrainian president’s falsification of history was dignified by his British host who dutifully nodded along as Poroshenko claimed that his country was a bulwark of Europe’s defense against Russian invasion. «This is not Ukraine’s struggle, it is Europe’s struggle. Sanctions and the resistance of the Ukrainian army are the only reason why Russian tanks are not much further in Europe», said Poroshenko whose asinine version of history received tacit British approval. Inadvertently, Poroshenko can be seen as confirming the perils of historical defamation that Putin was warning of. Falsifying recent and contemporary events in Ukraine might be a useful expedient for drumming up Western financial and military support for the corrupt and shaky Kiev regime; such blatant propagandizing of history may also be a useful expedient for expanding . . . READ MORE>>

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Thursday, April 20, 2017
(Brief update)

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Donetsk Defense: Situation Report, 04/20/2017 / DONi News / April 20, 2017 / Over the past 24 hours, the Armed Forces of Ukraine committed 25 occasions of the ceasefire regime violations. The territory of the Republic was attacked with mortars of 120-mm and 82-mm calibre, grenade launchers and small arms. From the positions of the 72 separate mechanized brigade of the Ukrainian Armed Forces 79 rounds of 120-mm and 82-mm calibre were fired at the localities of Yasinovataya, Vasilyevka and Belaya Kamenka. From the positions of the 46 Separate Airborne Assault Battalion of the Ukrainian Armed Forces 30 rounds of various calibres were fired at the localities of Spartak and the Airport area of Donetsk. From the positions of the 53 separate mechanized brigade of the Ukrainian Armed Forces 12 rounds of 82-mm calibre were fired at the locality of Zaitsevo, and from the positions of the 36 separate marines brigade of the Ukrainian Armed Forces 4 rounds of 82-mm calibre were fired at the locality of Bezymennoye. Also, the enemy applied various grenade launchers and small arms when attacking the following localities: Zaitsevo, Zheleznaya Balka, Spartak, Krytaya Balka, Yasinovataya, Vasilyevka, Spartak, Dolomitnoye, Leninskoye, Sakhanka, the Airport area and the Petrovsky district of Donetsk. As a result of attacking the positions of the DPR Armed Forces, one soldier perished. Yesterday, when attempting to penetrate into our territory, a . . . READ MORE>>

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Armed forces of Ukraine planning offensive in Mariupol direction / News-Front.info / April 20, 2017 / Urgent statement by the deputy commander of the DPR Armed Forces, Eduard Basurin. / The AFU continues to aggravate the situation on the contact line in violation of the Minsk Agreements. The «ATO» command is trying to transfer the conflict into a «hot» phase, committing provocative actions against the DPR People’s Militia. As it became known from a source in the command of the military unit A0456 (Odessa), on the eve of the May holidays, the Ukrainian Armed Forces, specifically the Ukrainian Navy units as part of one combined brigade of Marines, prepare a plan for active military operations in the Volnovakha and Novoazavsky districts of the former Donetsk region. According to the plan of the command, on April 23-24, two mobile subversive groups are planned to be deployed in the area of the locality of Shirokino. At the moment, weapons are being prepared for saboteurs. To conspire the operation of the group, it is planned to use civilian vehicles equipped with mortars. The main goal of the group is to approach the contact line as close as possible, to conduct a provocative fire on their false positions, and, consequently, justifie the beginning of retaliatory strikes on the positions of the DPR militia. Then, it is planned to launch a large-scale offensive in order to regain control over the territory of the former Donetsk region. The planning of the operation takes place against the background of the «raising the degree» of the rhetoric of the Ukrainian authorities representatives and is accompanied by the intensification of propaganda in the media controlled by Kiev. Due to the depressing moral and psychological state of the military, the authorities are making attempts to rotate the «ATO» forces units, hastily «repairing the gaps» in the vanguard of the future offensive. Recently, the Ukrainian media have spread a statement by Alexander Turchinov on the AFU steady advancement to the Russian border. By the way, soon after this statement, the head of the National Security and Defense Council was hospitalized with an . . . READ MORE>>

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Large scale Ukraine attack on Donbass may be imminent / Sott.net (from Fort Russ) / Translated by J Flores (DNR News) / April 20, 2017 / Ukrainian security officials have begun active preparations for an offensive on the southern sector of the front, on the eve of the May holidays, the Ukrainian army intends to strike in the area Shirokino village. Deputy commander of the operational command of the DPR, Eduard Basurin, said this to journalists today. “As it became known from a source in the command of the military unit A0456 (Odessa), on the eve of May holidays, the UAF, and specific units of the Ukrainian Navy as part of a consolidated Marine Brigade, have prepared a plan of active fighting in the Volnovakha and Novoazovskiy areas” Eduard Basurin said. “According to the command, around April 23-24, planned to push forward two mobile attack groups to the district of Shirokino village”, he continued. According to preliminary data, the Ukrainian security forces are going to bombard their own false position, only to allegedly return fire. The DPR believes that this incident will be used by the enemy as a pretext for attempts to unleash a large-scale offensive. “At the moment they are preparing a sabotage plan. A secret group plans to use civilian vehicles equipped with mortars”. said the representative of command.

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Having Lost American Support, Coup Leader Of Ukraine Turns To Britain For Military Help, Prime Minister May Ready To Defend Nazi Kiev Regime With British Lives / Novorossia Today / April 20, 2017 / Having gone to Britain as a fund raising stunt, Coup Leader Of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko returns home with something more valuable than money, the Prime Minister’s pledge to defend the Ukraine Junta with British lives. UK stands ready to help defend the fascist regime of Ukraine against any further Russian aggression, was the message given to Coup Leader Petro Poroshenko during yesterday’s visit and talks between the two nations. British Prime Minister Theresa May welcomed Coup Leader of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko to 10 Downing Street on Wednesday, saying Britain was “ready to support” the Ukraine Junta which is under threat from Russia, according to her spokesperson. Prime Minister May also vowed to push for further sanctions on Russian President Vladimir Putin, something Poroshenko continues to request of any western nation that will listen to him. Yesterday Moscow’s top diplomat Sergei Lavrov warned that UK’s relationship with Russia was at an all-time low. Meanwhile, more than 800 UK troops have been deployed to Eastern Europe – along with tanks and heavy armor – to defend against Russian aggression, that many are starting to ask for proof of. The Ukraine Junta continues to allege Russian occupation of it’s Donbass region as well as mass troop movements inside the war torn region, but is unable to provide proof of such activity. Local and Russian experts in turn point out that without Russia to blame all of Ukraine’s troubles, they become simply known as a failed state run by oligarchs, criminals and western corporations in bed with them. According to the Coup Leaders press service, during the meeting, Poroshenko and May have also discussed the expansion of security cooperation including more British troops becomming “more involved” in Ukraine’s internal conflict.

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Poroshenko Loses It, Says Ukraine Last Bastion Against Russian Attack on Europe / Sputnik / April 20, 2017 / During his visit to the UK this week, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko compared Russia with an aggressive ‘crocodile’ that will eat Europe if ‘appeased’. He also suggested that the Ukrainian army was the only thing standing in the way of a Russian invasion of Europe. Russian observers had a good laugh over the ridiculous remarks. Speaking at the Chatham House Royal Institute of International Affairs in London on Wednesday on the second day of his two day visit to London, Poroshenko evoked a quote by British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, who said during World War II that “an appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last.” Condemning Western politicians who seek to conduct dialogue with Russia, the Ukrainian President suggested that in today’s world, Russia was the crocodile. Spouting off a standard barrage of insults toward his eastern neighbor, Poroshenko complained that Russia doesn’t play by the rules, doesn’t believe in democracy or human rights, and was seeking world domination. “This is not Ukraine’s struggle, it is Europe’s struggle,” he added, as he pleaded with Western nations not to relieve sanctions pressure on Moscow. “Sanctions and the resistance of the Ukrainian army are the only reason Russian tanks are not much further into Europe,” Poroshenko suggested, his speech degenerating into something almost surreal. Russian analysts have had quite a good chuckle commenting on Poroshenko’s absurd claims. Political scientist Oleg Ignatov, for example, told Radio Sputnik that Poroshenko’s rhetoric could be ‘translated’ to mean ‘Washington, please give us weapons’. “In and of itself, such tough talk on Poroshenko’s part isn’t very surprising,” the analyst noted. “For over two years, Poroshenko has resorted to making these kinds of confrontational statements about Russia.” Today, Ignatov suggested, it’s obvious that “he wants to obtain lethal weapons from Washington,” and just as significantly, unconditional support from the Trump administration, just as he had received from President Obama. Most observers don’t believe that Washington . . . READ MORE>>

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Vladimir Putin (–Sergey Karpukhin/Reuters)

[Western media report:] Putin Quietly Detaches Ukraine’s Rebel Zones as U.S. Waffles / by Henry Meyer, Ilya Arkhipov, Stepan Kravchenko, Yuliya Fedorinova / Bloomberg / April 20, 2017 / Vladimir Putin is seizing on mixed signals from the U.S. to quietly tighten Russia’s grip on two rebel regions of Ukraine, burying hopes for a European-brokered peace deal and relief from sanctions anytime soon. While the Kremlin continues to publicly back the accord that Germany and France oversaw in 2015, Putin’s real strategy in Ukraine is to fully separate the two border areas known as the Donbas through incremental integration with Russia, three people close to the leadership in Moscow said. He has no plans to recognize or annex the territories, they said. Russia has been moving gradually, using a blockade by Ukrainian activists as political cover to take over key economic links with the separatist zones. Last week, Russian Railways slashed rates for shipping coal and iron ore to points near the rebel areas, where the metals industry provides most jobs. That will allow Russia to replace Ukrainian supplies halted by Kiev and ensure that steel plants continue to function, according to two people in the industry. “A step has been taken toward detaching Donbas — there’s no doubt about that,” a senior lawmaker in the ruling United Russia party, Konstantin Zatulin, said by phone from Moscow. Like other officials, Zatulin blamed Ukraine for forcing Moscow’s hand through the blockade, an allegation Kiev rejects. Zatulin’s assessment of the Kremlin’s plans was confirmed by Alexei Chesnakov, a former Kremlin staffer who now advises Putin’s administration on Ukraine policy, and a senior government official who asked not to be identified. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov Thursday dismissed the idea that Russia is integrating the regions, calling it “absurd” and “naive” on a conference call with reporters. Russian Citizenship: Earlier this year, Putin angered his Ukrainian counterpart, Petro Poroshenko, by signing a decree recognizing passports and other documents issued by the separatist governments in Luhansk and Donetsk, which have already declared the ruble their official currency. The Kremlin is also considering making it easier for the 2 million residents of the regions to become Russian citizens, which would dramatically complicate any attempt by Kiev to reassert control. Moscow is implementing the so-called “Transnistria scenario,” according to the deputy head of Poroshenko’s administration, Kostiantyn Yelisieiev, referring to the breakaway region in the former Soviet republic of Moldova, which hosts Russian troops but has no . . . READ MORE>>

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Wednesday, April 19, 2017
(Brief update)

International Court of Justice, The Hague, Netherlands

International Court of Justice Rules Implausible Ukrainian Charge of Russian Terrorist Financing / Quemado Institute / April 19, 2017 / The International Court of Justice, in The Hague, Netherlands, reached a conclusion today in the case brought by the Ukrainian government against the Russian Federation, in which the latter was accused of financing terrorists in east Ukraine and of practicing racial discrimination in Crimea. The court ruled against Russia on the latter count, agreeing that Russia must take measures to curtail racial discrimination in Crimea, but ruled in Russia’s favor on the first count, stating that there was no plausible evidence that Russia, with intent, knowledge or purpose, financed terrorists in east Ukraine. The summary document entitled Application of the International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism and of the International Convention on the Elimination of All Formsof Racial Discrimination (Ukraine vs Russian Federation) states on page 6: The Court observes that the acts to which Ukraine refers have given rise to the death and injury of a large number of civilians. However, in order to determine whether the rights for which Ukraine seeks protection are at least plausible,it is necessary to ascertain whether there are sufficient reasons for considering that the elements set out in Article 2, such as intention and knowledge, as well as the element of purpose, are present. The Court is of the view that, at this stage of the proceedings, Ukraine has not put before it evidence which affords a sufficient basis to find it plausible that these elements are present. Therefore, it concludes that the conditions required for the indication of provisional measures in respect of the rights alleged by Ukraine on the basis of the ICSFT [International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism] are not met. Ukraine’s accusations against the RF are listed on page 22 of the full ICJ document, which says: “As examples of such acts [of terrorism as defined in Article 2] committed on its territory [by the Russian Federation], Ukraine refers, in particular, to (a) the bombing of peaceful marchers in Kharkiv; (b) the bombardment of Mariupol; (c) the attacks on Volnovakha and Kramatorsk; and (d) the shooting-down of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17, all of which, according to the Applicant, plausibly involved an ‘intent to cause death or serious injury to civilians’ and had a plausible purpose ‘to intimidate a population’.” It is interesting that many observers believe Ukraine itself to be the guilty party in all of these events. The Russian Federation defended its case with the following argument (paragraph 71, page 25): “According to the Russian Federation, first, it cannot have breached its obligations under Article 18 of the ICSFT, since it has not been demonstrated that the armed groups in eastern Ukraine were engaging in acts of terrorism.” Russia argued its case in more detail on page 12 of the full document, stating: “The Russian Federation contends that no international body or organization seised of the current situation in eastern Ukraine has qualified the ongoing hostilities in terms of terrorism. It further contends that Ukraine has failed to submit any document from any international organization or any State other than Ukraine itself, characterizing the acts of the DPR and the LPR as acts of terrorism. The Russian Federation adds that most of the civilian casualties are in the territories under the control of the DPR and the LPR, and that multiple sources report that Ukrainian armed forces are themselves responsible for numerous acts of indiscriminate shelling, starting with the shelling of residential areas in Slavyansk in May 2014, where many civilians were killed and wounded by the shelling by Ukrainian armed forces, while residential buildings, hospitals and infrastructures were destroyed or damaged.” Editor’s note: On January 16, Ukraine filed a lawsuit against Russia in the International Court of Justice in The Hague in the framework of the International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism and the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (Novorossia Vision).

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Donetsk Defense: Situation Report, 04/19/2017 / DONi News / April 19, 2017 / Over the past 24 hours, the Armed Forces of Ukraine committed 36 occasions of the ceasefire regime violations. The territory of the Republic was attacked with artillery of 120-mm and 82-mm calibre, infantry fighting vehicles, armoured personnel carriers, grenade launchers and small arms. From the positions of the 36 separate marines brigade of the Ukrainian Armed Forces 49 rounds of 120-mm and 82-mm calibre were fired at the localities of Sosnovskoye and Sakhanka. Also, the enemy applied various grenade launchers and small arms when attacking the following localities: Zaitsevo, Zheleznaya Balka, Spartak, Krytaya Balka, Yasinovataya, Veseloye, Dokuchayevsk, Kominternovo, Leninskoye, Sosnovskoye, Nikolayevka, Oktyabr, the area of the Airport and the Petrovsky district of Donetsk. The Ukrainian leadership continues its policy of destabilizing the situation in Donbass. The continuous artillery shelling of the Republic’s territory, on which we have already accentuated attention, is a clear confirmation of this. Our reconnaissance records the facts of reinforcing the enemy’s forces along the contact line, including the deployment of AFU units at civilian and infrastructure facilities. So, on the territory of the Avdeyevka Coke and Chemical Plant, the deployment of Ukrainian security forces’ units has been revealed. The approaches to the locations are equipped in an engineering manner and mined, which constitutes a potential danger to civilians. We do not understand how the military and political leadership of Ukraine is going to fulfill its promises for a peaceful settlement of the conflict in Donbass against the backdrop of another statement by the Defense Minister of Ukraine about the intention to send over 20 tanks to the so-called ‘ATO’ zone and continue to build up the tank grouping on the contact line. What is it if not terror of the civilian population by Ukraine? How many peaceful inhabitants of Donbass have already perished from Ukrainian shellings? How many more will be killed by rounds hitting civilian property? Suffice it to say about the tragedy caused by accidental explosions due to improper handling of weapons and ammunition at such a facility as the Avdeyevska Coke and Chemical Plant, where chemically dangerous substances are stored. Units of the People’s Militia are constantly in a state of combat readiness. The units conduct trainings on managing artillery fire and counter-battery fighting, as well as countering the sabotage and reconnaissance groups and terrorist threats. —Vice-Commander of the DPR People’s Militia Colonel Eduard Basurin, official translation by DONi News Agency

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The Novorossia News brief 18-19 April 2017 / With Victoria Rakhmanina / Anna News / April 19, 2017 / The situation in the LPR is worsening. Kiev fighters have opened fire on the village Frunze of the Slavyanoserbsky district in the morning. They used grenade launchers, the representative of the LPR People’s Militia Andrey Marochko reported today. Kiev fighters shelled the positions of the LPR People’s Militia near the town Pervomaysk. They used antiaircraft guns, grenade launchers and small arms; it has been reported by the Ministry of Defense. 11 Ukrainian mortars and 200 soldiers arrived in the village Novoluganskoe near Debaltsevo, Eduard Basurin reported today. The Ukrainian Armed Forces shelled 16 localities in the Donetsk People’s Republic. The village Spartak, suburbs of Yasinovataya and the Telmanovsky district were subjected to intensive shelling. They used tanks, mortars, infantry fighting vehicles, armored personnel carriers, antiaircraft guns, grenade launchers and small arms. The Ukrainian Side keeps on hiding banned weapons and military equipment near the contact line, Andrey Marochko reported today. The representatives of the OSCE special monitoring mission reported that Ukraine restricted access in the localities Popasnaya, Katerinovka, Zolotoe, Stanitsa Luganskaya and Schastye.

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DPR Army regains control over a key height near Dokuchaevsk / Novorossia Today / April 19, 2017 / The Army DPR in the Donbass Republics retook the key height which was seized by the Ukrainian Junta army last winter. This is reported by war correspondent, Marina Kharkova, in her blog. ‘Dokuchaevsk. The height, from which we were forced to retreat with losses in winter, is returned,’ she wrote. Kharkova also reports about retaking positions in other sectors of the front. ‘Northwest. The dominant heights are ours. A lot of bags for strengthening are needed there,’ wrote the war correspondent. The Ukrainians, in their turn, are trying to conduct reconnaissance in combat on the outskirts of the Donetsk airport. ‘For two weeks, the Ukraine Junta Army have twice conducted reconnaissance in combat in the direction of of the Donetsk airport – the Volvo Center. They came out in small groups of 7 to 12 people, tried to spot fire points, tried to approach the 150-meter distance to our positions. The key word is tried,’ the reporter wrote.

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Donbass Arena: Damaged, but untouched, soon opened again in Donetsk City / DONi News / April 19, 2017 / Famous Donbass Arena in the Donetsk capital was left empty and untouched after the war in Donbass started in 2014. Now the new management under the Donetsk People’s Republic receivership of Ukrainian companies has started process to relaunch the football arena for public use. First press tour in the arena was also arranged. Prises office furniture, photographs and documents — all was left here since 2014, when the stadium ceased its operation. Now, when the DPR receivership was established at the object, the inventory of the property is undertaken. The Sports Ministry claims that stadium has a great potential. Donbass arena is quite multifunctional object, for before the war it served for some political performances and for sports events holding. The Republic’s sport sphere is really fast developing, so here we can hold different kinds of events, from ultimate fights to football matches,” said Michail Mishin the DPR Minister of Sport, Youth and Tourism. The football field is the heart of the stadium. Its condition is supported by several stuff representatives now, but they manage to water the grass, cut or fertilize it if needed. The stadium is roofed, thus the sunlight is reaching the northen part of the field, you should record it, that part is in ideal condition. Of course it will take a long time before the stadium is ready to hold the matches. Only the destructions expertise is to take at least two month. The building’s construction at the western side was badly damaged by the «tochka U» burst blast. Now the glass units suppliers are needed. Before the war, glass was imported from Turkey. Materials purchase and repair works need a considerable budget. The Republic’s government and the holding company’s management are sure that the stadium is to be repaired in the nearest future, and fans will be able to visit matches of Donbass favorite teams. —DONi News Agency; Video: OPLOT TV, 04/19/2017

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Italian delegation visited DPR / Novorossia Vision / April 20, 2017 / The Donetsk People’s Republic continues to be visited by foreign public figures. In particular, recently, the president of the Italian public organization «Cantiere Laboratorio», Vittorio Gilotti, and the president of the cultural association «Speranza, Irina Vikhoreva arrived in its territory. The Italian guests were pleasantly surprised. According to them, the Republic is an unusual country in which live people with great civic consciousness. ‘I am very glad that I was able to communicate directly with the soldiers, with those people who are defending their land,’ says Vittorio Gilotti. Upon returning home, they intend to organize a series of conferences from the north to the south, on which they will talk about the real situation in Donbass. In addition, it is planned to speak in the official government, the Italian parliament.

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Federico Pieraccini

A Ukraine on the Verge of Disaster Benefits No One / By Federico Pieraccini / Strategic Culture Foundation / April 19, 2017 / In the past three months, the lines of contact between Ukraine and the forces in Donbass have seen an escalation of considerable tension. Both the republics of Lugansk and Donetsk have suffered violent attacks at the hands of Kiev’s military forces. Of course all these violations are in stark contrast to what was established in the Minsk II agreements, in particular as regards the use of certain weapons systems. In addition to the military issues between Donbass and Ukraine, Kiev faces important internal struggle between oligarchs regarding economic issues. Symptomatic of this were the clashes in Avdeevka, then the attempts to capture the water filtration plant in Donetsk, and finally the blockade of coal transit from Donbass to Ukraine. All these have further deepened divisions between the components of the Ukrainian state’s power. The consequences of these events have led to greater instability in the country and decisive moves by the nationalist fringe alongside the Ukrainian SBU and other components of the military, who are the authors of the blockade of the railway lines between the Donbass and the rest of Ukraine. Intensifying the divisions within the country, the meeting between Tymoshenko and Trump has further increased tensions, with Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman defining Timoshenko as the source of all problems, both economic as well are regarding corruption. Ukraine is politically divided, exacerbated by disputes between . . . READ MORE>>

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Tuesday, April 18, 2017
(Full Report)

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Donetsk Defense: Situation Report, 04/18/2017 / DONi News / April 18, 2017 / Over the past day, there were registered 32 occasions of ceasefire violations by the Armed Forces of Ukraine. The Republic’s territory was fired with mortars of 120mm and 82mm calibre, tanks, infantry fighting vehicles, armoured personnel carriers, grenade launchers, and small arms. Mortar detachments of the 46th separate air assault brigade of the 72nd separate mechanized AFU brigade launched 397 mortar shells of 120mm and 82mm calibre onto the areas of Yasinovataya, Spartak and the airport of Donetsk. Nine tank rounds and 12 mortar shells of various calibre were fired at the area of ​​Belaya Kamenka village from the positions of the 30th separate mechanized brigade. Also, the enemy was actively applying various types of grenade launchers and small arms against the areas of the localities of Zaitsevo, Gorlovka, Krutaya Balka, Kulikovo, Sakhanka, Bezymennoye, Leninskoye, Dzerzhinskoye, Sosnovskoye, Dolomitnoye, Oktyabr and the Petrovsky district of Donetsk. The AFU command continues taking measures for augmenting its positions along the entire contact line. Thus, according to our reconnaissance, in Novoluganskoye locality (3 km to the contact line) there was detected the arrival of 18 mortars of 120mm and 82mm calibre and 200 servicemen of the 53rd separate mechanized brigade. As we can see, last night was very restless in Avdeyevka locality, several houses were . . . READ MORE>>

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Fire intensity at the contact line in DPR remains relatively low / Essence of Time / April 18, 2017 / Trench combat of variable intensity continues on the several parts of the front, but fire intensity remains relatively low, a source in the Donetsk People’s Republic People’s Militia (DPR PM) informed a Rossa Primavera News Agency reporter on April 18th. The situation is tense in the northern and south-western suburbs of Gorlovka, in Avdeevka industrial zone, in the area of the village of Spartak, and in the western suburbs of the Petrovksy district of Donetsk, as well as in the south of the Republic. There is no information on destructions and victims among the civilian population. DPR PM intelligence informs on the reinforcements of the Ukrainian army on the Debaltsevo direction. A battalion of the soldiers from the 53rd independent mechanized brigade arrived in the area of the village of Novoluganskoye. There is also information on the redeployment of a battery of 82mm mortars and a battery of 120mm mortars. According to recent information, on April 17th, the Ukrainian side violated ceasefire 32 times. The enemy opened fire on 16 towns and villages of DPR with tanks, mortars of various calibers, infantry fighting vehicles, various grenade launchers, and small arms. Source: Rossa Primavera News Agency

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Kiev fighters shell Frunze village, LPR, with grenade launchers / DONi News / April 18, 2017 / Kiev forces fired the area of Frunze village in the Slavyanoserbsky district with automatic grenade launchers this morning, reported the official representative of the LPR People’s Militia Lieutenant-Colonel Andrei Marochko. “The armed forces of Ukraine violated the ceasefire at 9:50 am. The fire at Frunze locality was launched with automatic grenade launchers from the direction of Krymsloye locality,” said the Lieutenant-Colonel. Previously, Marochko said that the situation on the contact line in the LPR had deteriorated over the past day.

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300 NATO-equipped military instructors arrive at Mariupol and Gorlovka areas / DONi News / April 17, 2017 / The DPR reconnaissance has detected the redeployment of 300 foreign military instructors in Gorlovka and Mariopol areas, committed by the Ukrainian side, reports the DPR Operational Command’s Vice-Commander, Eduard Basurin. “The arrival of over 300 foreign military instructors, equipped and armed according to the NATO standards was recorded in the ‘ATO’ zone,” said the Command’s representative. He underlined that some of the foreign instructors were detected at the positions of the 25th separate airportable brigade near the city of Konstantinovka and in the 36th separate marine brigade’s dislocation area near the city of Mariupol. According to the Vice-Commander, there is a tendency among some European countries to send military instructors to Ukraine instead of sending real help like weapons and shells. In addition, according to the DPR reconnaissance, Kiev redeployed four artillery guns of 122 mm caliber and established three new artillery positions near Donetsk. Thus, in the villages of Yasnobrodovka and Netailovo of the occupied part of the Yasinovataya district to 14 and 10 km away from the front line, the reconnaissance detected two automatic weapons Gvozdika and two howitzers D-30. In the village of Georgievka, 7 km to the west from the capital, 122-mm towed howitzers were found.

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Plotnitsky, Zakharchenko (–02varvara.wordpress.com)

Lugansk People’s Republic calls for international investigation of chemical weapons proliferation by Ukrainian regime / By Adam Garrie / The Duran / April 18, 2017 / The United States and its allies have yet to respond. / The Duran recently reported on stories that forces of the Ukrainian regime have used chemical weapons on Donbass, including on civilian populations. Today, the Lugansk People’s Republic in Donbass has issued a statement urging for international condemnation of and further investigations into the chemical weapons that the Kiev regime holds in its weapons arsenals. Andrey Marochko, the spokesman for the militia of the Lugansk People’s Repulbic has said, “I wish to draw your attention to mendacious statements by the Ukrainian party that it has no storage sites or arsenals of chemical weapons and components. We are well aware that contrary to the Convention, there are chemical weapons in Ukrainian territory. I’m calling upon the international community to address the problem at hand as Ukraine might use this kind of weapon or its unsanctioned use might occur due to low morale and psychological state of Ukrainian servicemen”. Evidence, including video and forensic investigations have shown that the Ukrainian regime is acting in contravention of the Chemical Weapons Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, Stockpiling and Use of Chemical Weapons and on their Destruction of 1993. A thorough international investigation is necessary. READ MORE: When Ukraine dropped chemical weapons on Donbass, the west didn’t care (VIDEO)

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“Burn Crimea and Donbass to the ground” – Ukrainian Colonel / By Inessa Sinchougova (Rusvesna) / Fort Russ / April 18, 2017 / The Ukraine will not be able to end the Donbass conflict via political means, “because they hate us, and we have them.” This comes from an interview in Ukrainian media with Colonel Vsevolod Steblyuk, formerly part of “ATO”. He added that in order to “free the occupied territories” of the Donbass and the Crimea – they needed to burn it to the ground. When the journalist asked how to “free” the Ukrainian people on the occupied territories – Steblyuk replied that those who chose to stay there, do not want to be liberated. “I speak to many people, journalists and residents of DPR and LPR, and for the most part they are happy with what’s going on there. They think they are heroes.” – says Steblyuk. No diplomatic solution to the conflict is possible according to the Colonel. “To take the occupied territories by force would eventuate in a large amount of casualties.” [Fort Russ translator’s note: In order to ‘liberate’ the areas, Steblyuk used the Russian word of “zachistka” which in it’s literal sense means ‘to sweep away fully’. It’s closest English equivalent only leaves me with “genocide”?] Steblyuk continued that this would be in line with “Kremlin methods” – “In the very same way that Russians did it in Chechnya, burning it to the ground.” The statement is not even remotely true. “But the world would not understand us, if we did it…” he added, similarly confused as to the capabilities of the Ukrainian army.

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Savchenko: Ukraine has lost Donbass / By Inessa Sinchougova (Antifascist.com) / Fort Russ / April 18, 2017 / The only aspect now linking the Donbass to the Ukraine is the exchange of prisoners. Everything else the Ukraine has already lost – said Nadezhda Savchenko. The DPR and the LPR no longer rely on Kiev for anything, having made considerable adjustments to their economy and political networks. According to the politician, Kiev has lost all leverage in being able to influence the Republics, and they only have themselves to blame. They let precious time go to waste, releasing control over strategic questions that could have brought the Republics under Kiev’s influence. “I don’t want to prophesize something bad, this is just the physical feeling that I have. As a pilot – they don’t just fly and look around, they feel the flight with every fibre of their body. In the same way, sometimes you feel a situation – we are losing because we did not act confidently in political decision-making over the past three years.” Similarly, she says that Kiev’s excuses, that elections in the Donbass “under rebel machine guns” could not have taken place, are nonsensical. “The choice of the people of the Donbass would have been the same irrespective of armed rebels.” Fort Russ Editor: It would seem that Savchenko, in a rare statement for peace, is pro-elections in the Donbass as per the Minsk agreements. This has not been allowed to occur so far. It is reasonable to suppose that if the political process begun as it should have, when the economies of the regions were still closely tied, the breakaway Republics would have a lot more aspects to consider in their decisions.

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Donald Trump (–Molly Riley/AFP/Getty Images)

Trump would like to see Ukraine’s expenditure reports, Democrats’ funding / By Inessa Sinchougova (PolitNavigator) / Fort Russ / April 18, 2017 / The meeting of President Trump and President Poroshenko in the near future is unlikely – writes director of the “Ukrainian Politics” Fund, Kost Bondarenko. “In February, Pavel Klimkin (diplomat) went [to the US] to organise a meeting between Poroshenko and Trump, and also prematurely announced it. Now we’re into April, but there is no set meeting date. As far as understand, there is no plan for it to occur it all.” He noted that Klimkin went to Washington not for the purposes of organising the event, but to meet with lobbyists who are pro-Kiev. “Poroshenko has many lobbyists on his side, who have promised him a meeting with President Trump. Nevertheless, Trump has voiced a number of questions in respect of this. The first time was during a meeting with Mrs. Merkel, when he asked why should the US, and not Europe, be responsible for the Ukraine?” Secondly, it is said that Trump has agreed to meet with Poroshenko but only after sufficient reports have been received as to how Kiev has been spending US funding. Thirdly, Ukraine must make public all the transactions that took place between the Democrats and Kiev. There are things that the Ukraine is silent about because these transactions included highly classified documentation for the delivery of arms to the area and the use of covert mercenaries from other countries on Ukrainian territory. “Revealing such information is not beneficial to the Ukraine at the current time, and so I believe this meeting is not going to occur” – writes the author.

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Poroshenko Arrives into London / By Graham Phillips / The Truth Speaker / April 18, 2017 / What must be pretty much the last thing you want if you’re Theresa May? You’ve just announced a snap General Election, you’ve got literally a million things to do. And, there it is – a pre-arranged visit by Ukraine’s often inebriated, always crazy, president, Poroshenko. And you just know he’s not going to say ‘Theresa, you must be up to your neck at the moment another time?’ Petr’s got his invite, he’s coming! What to expect? Will it be waving Russian passports around, waving bits of a bus around? Accusing Putin of killing the pharaoh (Poroshenko recently claimed Putin used the London terrorist attacks of March 22nd to murder someone on the sly in Kiev, no less). Well, let’s see. Poroshenko arrives into London tomorrow. [Links available at source.]

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Sergei Lavrov (–Al-Masdar News)

Lavrov: Calls for military advance in Donbass shows Kiev ‘chooses to disregard Minsk deal’ / Sott.net (from DONi News) / April 18, 2017 / The statement made by Ukraine’s Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council Alexander Turchinov that the Ukrainian Armed Forces should move forward in Donbass proves refusal from the Minsk agreements, Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Saturday, reports TASS. “Stable doubts about adequacy of Ukrainian politicians emerged long ago,” he said. “This is not the first statement of the kind. Before Turchinov, a similarly threatening, hostile rhetoric was used regularly by President (of Ukraine Pyotr) Poroshenko, and (Speaker of Verkhovna Rada Andrei) Parubiy, and others. This means the Ukrainian leaders do not want to observe the Minsk agreements even in the part related to settlement of security issues. Formally, Poroshenko names the security problems the main part of the Minsk agreements, and until the security issues are not settled, he refuses to discuss the political process,” the Russian foreign minister said. “Turchinov’s statement means Kiev refuses to fulfil the very part of the Minsk agreements, which is related to security, and which it considers the priority and absolutely integral to have everything else solved later on,” Lavrov said. “I believe, it is already clear to all that this is the conscientious choice of the Ukrainian leaders. And it also means Kiev does not care about their European sponsors. The Kremlin’s press service has announced already upcoming contacts in the Normandy Format (Russia, Ukraine, Germany and France – TASS),” Lavrov said. “I believe, this would be one of very important questions to be discussed.” The media earlier published Turchinov’s statement, where he said the Ukrainian military should “meter after meter, kilometer after kilometer move eastwards.”

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(–Sputnik/AP/ Evgeniy Maloletka)

Moscow Launches Criminal Case Over Kiev Abducting Russian Volunteers in Donbass / Sputnik / April 17, 2017 / Moscow opened a criminal case over Ukraine’s law enforcement abducting Russian citizens who volunteered to help Donbass refugees. / MOSCOW / A criminal case has been launched into the 2014-2015 abductions by Ukrainian law enforcement agencies of Russian citizens in southeastern Ukraine, the Russian Investigative Committee said Monday. “A criminal case was opened on the basis of the crimes specified by Article 126 of the Russian Criminal Case (abduction),” Investigative Committee spokeswoman Svetlana Petrenko said. The case covers a December 2014 abduction of a 36-year-old Russian volunteer who was freed two years later and an April 2015 abduction of a group of volunteers involved in providing assistance to Donbass refugees, Petrenko said. The Donbass conflict erupted in April 2014 as a local counter-reaction to the West-sponsored Maidan coup in Kiev that had toppled President Viktor Yanukovych in February. Residents of the Donetsk and Lugansk regions held independence referendums and proclaimed the People’s Republics of Donetsk and Lugansk. Kiev has since been conducting a military operation, encountering stiff local resistance. In February 2015, Kiev forces and Donbass independence supporters signed a peace agreement in the Belarusian capital of Minsk. The deal stipulates a full ceasefire, weapons withdrawal from the line of contact in Donbass, as well as constitutional reforms that would give a special status to the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics. Despite the agreement brokered by the Normandy Four states (Russia, France, Germany and Ukraine), the ceasefire regime is regularly violated, with both sides accusing each other of multiple breaches, undermining the terms of the accord.

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Donbass “humanitarian offensive” will pay off in the long run – expert / Translated from PolitNavigator by J. Arnoldski for Fort Russ / April 17, 2017 / According to Russian political analyst Oleg Bondarenko, Ukrainian media underestimate the Humanitarian Program for Reunifying the People of Donbass announced by the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics’ which de-fact aids residents of the entire South-East of Ukraine. In so doing, Donetsk and Lugansk have gone on an ideological offensive and seized the initiative from Petro Poroshenko. “This program includes the provision of free medical care, including cancer treatment, cardiac surgery, endoprosthetics, and obstetric aid, a full cycle of free education, including the possibility of transferring from any Ukrainian university, and payments for veterans of the Great Patriotic War. This program’s operations apply first and foremost to residents of the Donetsk and Lugansk regions controlled by Ukraine. However, it de facto applies to all citizens of Ukraine regardless of their place of residence. There have already been inquiries from the Odessa, Kharkov, and Dnepropetrovsk regions which were considered positive,” Bondarenko explained. The expert forecasted: “At such a pace, the authorities of the self-proclaimed republics risk getting a wave of requests for help, first and foremost medical care, from the residents of at least all of South-East Ukraine where, as is known, there has de facto long since been no free medicine. Considerable funds (for example, one peacemaker costs 60,000 rubles plus) have been allocated for the program, but from a political point of view they can be considered long-term investments which will undoubtedly pay off.” “All of this suggests that the authorities of the DPR and LPR have more effectively ridden the wave of ‘united Donbass’ than Ukraine, and they now intend to build Donbass’ subjectivity. Of course, it would be difficult to imagine this process without Moscow’s help, but with his recent decision to recognize the passports of the unrecognized republics, President Vladimir Putin de-facto gave it the green light. Where and how it will stop is a good question,” Bondarenko said.

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Alexander Khodakovsky (–Northwoods Ministries)

Is A Major Ukrainian Offensive Against The Rebels Looming? / By Tyler Durden / ZeroHedge / April 18, 2017 / On December 24, 2016, Ukraine Rebels Agreed to a New Indefinite Truce. It is the latest in many truces that neither side has honored since the Minsk Protocol, was signed on 5 September 2014. The Minsk ceasefire agreement completely collapsed in January 2015, with renewed heavy fighting across the conflict zone, including Donetsk International Airport and Debaltsovo. A new ceasefire, called Minsk II, was agreed to on 12 February 2015. Minsk II largely held if you don’t count near-daily artillery fire and periodic small-unit actions that have killed many hundreds on each side. However, there are numerous signs another major outbreak might be at hand. Speculation on a renewed major outbreak comes from an April 9 Website Post by Alexander Khodakovsky. That poster, from the preceding link, is reminiscent of a WWII call to arms. The message on the poster translates as “Join the Peoples’ Militia!” Wikipedia notes Alexander Khodakovsky is the commander of the pro-Russian Vostok Battalion formed in early May 2014 during the 2014 insurgency in the Donbass. Khodakovsky is a former commander of the Alpha special unit of the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU). During the 2014 insurgency in the Donbass, he left Ukrainian state service and became the leader of the pro-Russian “Patriotic Forces of Donbass” in Donetsk Oblast, and later (until July 16, 2014 when he was replaced by Vladimir Antyufeyev) the Security Minister of the Donetsk People’s Republic (DNR). Reader Jacob Dreizin emailed that other warning signs of a potential offensive include an intense barrage of warlike statements from Ukrainian officials including the Interior Minister and the National Security Council chief, as well as social media chatter from individuals claiming to be local residents, about unusually intense Ukrainian military aircraft activity to/from the Kramatorsk airfield (about 30 miles from the frontline) and other locations in the Ukraine-controlled part of the Donbass. In other posts, Khodakovsky speaks of unusually heavy concentrations of Ukrainian material near the front, and warns that Ukraine is likely to launch an offensive soon, with an eye to victory before or around May 9th, a day which . . . READ MORE>>

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Monday, April 17, 2017
(Brief update)

DPR President Zakharchenko: Questions From Around the World / Quemado Institute (from Novorossia Today ) / April 17, 2017 / Introduction by Kennedy Applebaum: I am impressed yet again with the brilliance and humanity of Alexander Zakharchenko, distinguished leader of the Donetsk People’s Republic. Setting an example of diplomacy, Zakharchenko kindly answers questions from enemy as well as friend. We thank the publication Novorossia Today for making available this question-answer session with the DPR President. – “What do I think of America? It seems to me that this country, which started very well, is now lost. And this is a matter of ideology: tolerance, the dictatorship of minorities, sexual revolutions and the absence of restraining moral principles, the destruction of the bond between generations … And also deception and pharisaism. An illusion. As a result, we see a split between the people and the elites. So, America is facing a serious shock. I do not understand how it can serve as a model for anyone.” –Alexander Zakharchenko / EXCLUSIVE: Donetsk People’s Republic President Alexander Zakharchenko Answers Questions From All Over the World, from Ukraine To New York / April 16, 2017 / Vadim, Mariupol cityQuestion: Inadequate “pod-heads” from among our now-former fellow citizens like to ridicule absolutely everything in the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics, from the prices for tomatoes to the largest funeral of our heroes and reservists’ gatherings. They say people are driven there. It’s clear that it’s from their own defectiveness. After all, they themselves drive the schoolchildren to funerals of their “camrades”, forcing them to bow before the murderers and accomplices of the murderers of children like themselves. Their latest three or four “heroes” were seen off in the last way on Maydan by just about a hundred people. I don’t even speak about the “most powerful army in Europe”, in which you can not drive normal military even with a stick, there are only some lazy and unemployed people who join it out of hopelessness and credit dependence. And even with them, there is a shortage. Nevertheless, two dozen regions is more than our two small republics. This is understandable to normal people. In this regard, I have a question about the reserve army. It consists, I understand, not only of veterans of military operations, but I’m interested in exactly these weathered reserves. Do you plan to arm all of them, as you said? If so, how fast can it be done? Obviously, the reserve is primarily a defensive force, do you expect a real escalation in the near future? Answer (Zakharchenko): Vadim, I answer your questions in turn: 1. In the reserve, we have both those who fought in 2014 and 2015, and in the majority those who have not yet fought. Of course, we focus on those who already had experience of fighting. 2. Yes, we arm all experienced reservists. This does not contradict our Weapons Law, according to which it is possible to register up to 5 pieces of firearms. I have repeatedly said that if the AFU or punitive battalions try to enter our cities, they will be flooded with red-hot lead. Each apartment can be an autonomous fire point. 3. As for your last question, again yes. We expect another escalation in the very near future. Putting it mildly. Our intelligence reports that the opposite side is fully . . . READ MORE>>

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Thursday, April 13, 2017
(Brief update)

Click for video.

Donetsk Defense TV News Report, 04/13/2017 / DONi News (Youtube.com) / April 13, 2017 / The contact line situation remains tense in the Donetsk People’s Republic. For the last 24 hours Ukrainian forces shelled the Petrovsky district of Donetsk, the locality of Alexandrovka and Zaitsevo locality in the north of Gorlovka. The enemy applied tanks, mortars, artillery, grenade launchers and small arms. According to the DPR power wielding agencies’ data, the shell hit was recorded at the Beloozerskaya Str., 13. The house’s roof and windows were damaged. In Alexandrovka locality the Shevchenko Str. underwent the Ukrainian shelling. One of the houses is destroyed as a result of the direct hit. Today early in the morning the Ukarinian army conducted fire at Zaitsevo locality. One direct hit at the Brusilova Str., 14 was recorded. In total, about 60 ceasefire violations were recorded over the past 24 hours. “The increase of the shelling intensity on the Ukrainian part these days is connected with the Kiev’s commission arrival at the ATO zone. The commission demanded the units’ commanders to demonstrate their readiness to continue the Donbass population genocide. While holding back the enemy, two DPR soldiers perished and one more was wounded,” said Eduard Basurin, the DPR Armed Forces’ Vice-Commander. –Video: UNION TV, 04/13/2017

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Explosion hits Ukrainian arms depot outside Yasinovataya / Donetsk News Agency (DAN) / April 12, 2017 / An explosion rocked a Ukrainian arms depot outside Yasinovataya today, said DPR Operations Command deputy commander Eduard Basurin. “Today at around 7 a.m. an explosion occurred at the vicinity of Butovskaya mine air shaft on Kiev-controlled territory, at an ammunition depot. Most probably, the blast was caused by violations of safety rules or a targeted detonation perpetrated to conceal thefts,” he said. DPR intelligence says Ukrainian munition storage sites are exposed to critical safety violations and are subject to larceny. The most recent and bright example is a massive explosion at an ammunition warehouse in Balakleya, Kharkov district, which stored about 138,000 tons of ammunition. The blast and the subsequent detonations sparked evacuation of 20,000 people.

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Trump made a deal with China, and Russia has been given a notice; not only North Korea is now in the worst position ever, but the position of Donbass too is now weaker than ever before since March 2015 / By Vladimir Suchan / Logos Politicos / April 12, 2017 / As some of you might have noted my volunteer reporting, Poroshenko arrived on Wednesday in the region of Lugansk (2/3 of it is controlled byKiev) and declared that all the tank formations of Ukraine are at full combat readiness in Donbass. Now more information is coming, following recent Khodakovski’s statement about a possible Ukrainian large attack, that, indeed, Kiev has brought to the frontline an unprecedentedly high amount of weaponry and troops, especially indeed tanks which are placed in evident attack formations. We also know that Tillerson called Poroshenko personally on Wednesday during his talks in Moscow. Khodakovsky does believe that the conflict in Donbass is moving back to a full fledged war. On my part I would add that, in temperament, Trump is a bit like Reagan. He is not a procrastinator if he can acts, and he likes to act and “have it done” instead of just going through the motion. The difference or rather gap in power between the US and its alliance, on the one hand, and the rest, and especially Russia, is tremendous. Trump is very determined to turn this large advantage into new established gains and breakthroughs. (Otherwise I saw Lavrov today to be rather shaken and he tried to avoid eye contact with the audience when speaking; the old confidence was gone). [More in Russian at source.]

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Wednesday, April 12, 2017
(Brief update)

Fierce Battle Near Donetsk With Use of Artillery, Armored Vehicles / Russkaya Vesna / Translated by Quemado Institute/ April 12, 2017 / A fierce battle is taking place in the northern suburbs of Donetsk. At about 20:00, in the area of the Yasinovataya checkpoint and the Donetsk airport, a battle broke out with the use of mortars, artillery and armored vehicles. As of 22:00, the intensity of the battle has increased. “It’s very scary on Partizansky Avenue, the arrivals are audible, the windows are shaking. Makeevka, the center of the Guards, [firings can be heard] loudly,” note the local residents. In addition, the [Ukrainian] Armed Forces continue mortar shelling of the village of Trudovsky in the Petrovsky district of Donetsk, which began around 18:00. Editor’s note: Reports on twitter describe loud booms about once a minute.

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Donetsk Situation Report, 12.04.2017 / Novorossia Vision / April 12, 2017 / Over the past day, the Armed Forces of Ukraine violated the ceasefire 50 times. The enemy continued the violation of the Minsk Agreements, having launched on the territory of the Republic 311 82 and 120mm mortar shells, over a half of which (162 mortar shells) landed on the Avdeevka industrial zone. The rest of the Kiev terrorists’ mortar shells landed in the area of the airport and the Petrovsky district of Donetsk city. I urge residents of the front zone and the DPR military to take care when moving, due to the increased activity of the enemy snipers along the entire contact line. As a result of this fire, over the past day, one soldier of the Republic was killed. The OSCE mission representatives continue to record violations of the Minsk Agreements by the Ukrainian side. In particular, in the monitoring report of April 11, there is noted another fact of shooting at an UAV by the AFU. Thus, with the build-up of . . . READ MORE>>

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Click for video.

The news brief, 12 April 2017 / Anna News / April 12, 2017 / By newscaster Victoria Rakhmanina: The Ukrainian Army has opened fire on the village Spartak near Yasinovataya from heavy mortars in the morning, the head of the town Yasinovataya Oleg Morgun reported today. The Ukrainian fighters have shelled the representatives of the OSCE special monitoring mission near the town Pervomaysk. They used infantry fighting vehicles and small arms, the representative of the LPR People’s Militia Andrey Marochko reported today. The Ukrainian Armed Forces shelled 16 localities in the Donetsk People’s Republic. They used mortars, infantry fighting vehicles, armored personnel carriers, antiaircraft guns, grenade launchers and small arms. The Ukrainian sniper killed a soldier of the DPR, Eduard Basurin reported today. There was an explosion in the Ukrainian ammunition depot near Yasinovataya. Basurin said Kiev hides plunder of ammunition. Kiev fighters shelled the positions of the LPR People’s Militia 6 times near the villages Lozovoe, Frunze and Logvinovo. They used mortars, infantry fighting vehicles, antiaircraft guns and small arms; it has been reported by the Ministry of Defense.

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DONi video report from DPR frontline village, Kominternovo
April 12, 2017 [RAW Video]

Click for video
Report by: Janus Putkonen
DONi Donbass News Agency

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Agreement Reached in Minsk on Complete Ceasefire in Donbass / Novorossiya Information Agency / Translated by Quemado Institute / April 12, 2017 / At the talks of the contact group on the settlement of the situation in Donbass, an agreement was reached on a complete ceasefire from 10:00 on April 13. This was reported by the authorized representative of the Lugansk People’s Republic at the Minsk talks Vladislav Deinego. According to him, the participants of today’s meeting of the Contact Group confirmed their commitment to the decision of March 29, 2017 regarding the fulfillment, on the eve of the Easter holidays, of the previous commitments to full compliance with the ceasefire. “In the context of that statement, a decision was made to fully observe the ceasefire from 10 am on April 13,” Deinego said. Previously it was repeatedly reported that the UAF [Ukrainian Armed Forces] did not comply with the agreement on a complete ceasefire. Today, Ukrainian militants opened fire on representatives of the OSCE monitoring mission. [Photo: Vladislav Deinego, Denis Pushilin]

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Sunday, April 9, 2017
(Brief update)

Donetsk Defense: Situation Report, 04/09/2017 / DONi News / April 9, 2017 / Over the past 24 hours there were registered 52 occasions of ceasefire violations on the part of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. They applied weapons including those prohibited by the Minsk agreements. Altogether, the enemy launched five projectiles, 35 tank-shells and 483 mortar-shells. Kiev terrorists massively shelled the areas of the localities of DOKUCHAYEVSK, YASINOVATAYA and the Petrovsky district of Donetsk. The enemy launched five projectiles, 35 tank-shells and 60 mortar-shells onto the area of the settlement of DOKUCHAYEVSK, having damaged a house on Lenin Street, 92 and also five residential houses in the locality of Yasnoye on Shorsa Street, 25, 29, 31, 46 and 48. AFU servicemen launched 160 mortar-shells onto the locality of YASINOVATAYA. I remind you that the Donetsk Filtering Station and power lines that provide including the locality of AVDEYEVKA on AFU-controlled territory with water and electricity. As a result of shelling the Petrovsky district of Donetsk by the enemy there were damaged three residential houses on Karnavalnaya Street, 60; on Krasnoarmeiskaya Street, 7 and on Mamina-Sibiryaka, 17. Besides, as a result of damaging power lines, the localities of ELENOVKA, SIGNALNOYE and LUGANSKOYE were left without electricity. I would like to note that the enemy purposefully shells the power lines which are already located near the contact line – this makes it difficult to repair them in time. One DPR serviceman perished because of artillery shellings by the enemy. Thus, Kiev keeps waging the terrorist war, the population on the territory of Ukraine suffers. . . READ MORE>>

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The case of Wagner, Putin’s Chief of Russia’s Blackwater–“a private military company”–and his hospitable treatment by Ukraine’s SBU / By Vladimir Suchan / Logos Politicos / April 8, 2017 / Dmitriy Utkin better known by his nom de guerre as “Wagner,” which he chose because of his admiration for Wehrmatcht and SS, has been a commander of Russia’s leading para-military private company and was awarded personally by Putin for his fighting in Syria. In Donbass he is known or believed to be the one behind the assassinations of the most charismatic people’s Novorossiya commanders and leaders who were dreaming of a Novorossiya and Russia without oligarchs and fascists such as Mozgovoy, Batman, Dremov and others. In 2016 Wagner was able to visit Ukraine, which was noted and this led to an inquiry addressed to the Ukraine SBU (former KGB) as to whether, as one would expect, his entry to Ukraine has not been banned or whether he is not liable to arrest upon crossing the Ukrainian border. For he also did his share of fighting in Donbass and was deployed in Crimea as well. A scan of the SBU answer is part of the linked article. According to the SBU, Wagner alias Utkin is free to visit Ukraine. [More in Russian at source.]

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Saturday, April 8, 2017
(Brief update)

Donetsk Defense: Situation Report, 04/08/2017 / DONi News / April 8, 2017 / Over the past 24 hours, there were registered 56 occasions of ceasefire violations by the Armed Forces of Ukraine, among which: In the Gorlovka direction – 4 occasions; In the Donetsk direction – 37 occasions; In the Mariupol direction – 15 occasions. The enemy violated the Minsk accords, having fired 16 shells from heavy artillery, 12 tank shells and 383 mortar rounds at the territory of the Republic. Shelling conducted by Ukrainian terrorists during the bring holiday of the Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin Mary led to shrapnel injuries of two residents of the Petrovsky district of Donetsk, 1980 and 1983 birth years respectively. In addition, four residential houses were damaged: In the Petrovsky district of Donetsk in the Karnavalnaya St., 25 and Zelyony Gai, 3; In Yasnoye locality: along Pobedy St., 25 and Schorsa St., 31, where two flats suffered at one blow. Casualties among the DPR army amount to one perished and one wounded. We note the facts of the enemy’s drawing mortar squadrons to the contact line in the areas of Avdeyevka, Opytnoye, Peski, Kamenka and Vodyanoye. We also revealed the arrival of an Islamic battalion in the city of Maryupol in the number of up to 500 people, which will operate in the responsibility zone of 36 separate brigade of marines. The task of the battalion is to guard the stockpiles of rocket and artillery weapons, as well as to take control of the MARIUPOL port, which became a trans-shipment base for illegal arms trade, including chemical munitions, with the countries of the Middle East. The battalion is deployed in the city of Maryupol in Bakhchivandzhi Street. The battalion’s curator is Major KARPENKO, commander of the Ukrainian National Guard troop. Thus, the Ukrainian military command, facing the reluctance of Ukrainians to replenish the ranks of the killers, involves and legitimates in their ranks Wahhabi units, whose so-called “jihad” destroys the states in the Middle East and has already reached Europe. —Vice-Commander of the DPR People’s Militia Colonel Eduard Basurin, official translation by DONi News Agency

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Lugansk People’s Republic News Round-Up: April 2nd-8th / Fort Russ / April 8, 2017 / Foreword from J. Arnoldski: Fort Russ is proud to present the first installment of our new weekly series made possible by cooperation with the editorial board of Cossack Herald newspaper, part of the Cossack Media Group based in Stakhanov, Lugansk People’s Republic, which we introduced to English-language audiences in February 2017. Cossack Herald suggested starting a regular digest or “news round-up” surveying the mass media of the People’s Republic of Donbass. In their own words: “Readers outside the DPR and the LPR know little about the processes unfolding in the political, social, and economic spheres of the republics. Meanwhile, a lot of interesting and exclusive samples of information are contained in the republics’ publications.” While for now our weekly Donbass news round-ups will mostly focus on developments in the Lugansk People’s Republic, we do plan to expand our scope and contacts to cover life in the Donetsk People’s Republic. Without further ado, the editorial staff of the newspaper Cossack Herald presents us with a digest of the most interesting news of the past week’s events in Ukraine and the People’s Republics of Donbass. / Ukraine faces energy crisis and price hikes: After the President and the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine announced the blockade of the People’s Republics of Donbass on March 15th, 2017, coal supplies from the People’s Republic of Donetsk and the People’s Republic of Lugansk to Ukraine were finally discontinued. Ukraine’s thermal power plants (TPP’s) are in fact fueled by Donbass coal. TPP plants in Ukraine were originally . . . READ MORE>>

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Happy 3rd Birthday Donetsk Peoples Republic!
VIDEO by Patrick Lancaster
April 7, 2017

Click for video.

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Basurin reported the arrival of the “Islamic Battalion” of Ukraine in Donbass / By Anton Starkov / Life.ru (via StalkerZone) / Autotranslated by Quemado Institute / April 8, 2017 / Mariupol arrived Ukrainian battalion numbering up to 500 people. According to the intelligence of the DNR, its peculiarity lies in the fact that it is Islamic, and its tasks include guarding warehouses with rocket and artillery weapons and taking control of the Mariupol port. It is through this port that Ukraine carries out illegal trade in arms and ammunition, including chemical weapons, with the countries of the Middle East, Eduard Bazurin, deputy commander of the Dniester Democratic Party, said. “We have identified the arrival of an Islamic battalion in Mariupol in the number of up to 500 people, which will operate in the zone of responsibility of the 36th Marine Brigade. The battalion is stationed on Bakhchivandzhi Street. The battalion’s curator is the commander of the company of the National Guard of Ukraine Major Karpenko,” explained Basurin.

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Nazi Ukraine Junta Parliament Verkhovna Rada Calls On U.S. Regime To Launch Missile Strikes On Russia / Novorossia Today / April 8, 2017 / Just like what is happening to Syria, the crime and madness, launching 60 Tomahawk Missiles On Civilians Ordered By The Trump Regime, Now The Nazi Parliament Of Ukraine, The Verkhovnaya Rada calls on the United States to launch a missile strike against Russia. / A MP from the faction of the Radical Party of Oleg Lyashko, and someone by the name Dmitry Linko described the attack on Syria as an example of how the so-called conflict between Kiev and Moscow. According to the Nazi Parliament Of The Ukraine Junta, ISIS Is Not The Enemy ! The world today must adopt a military doctrine against terrorists, provided that the main sponsor of terrorism in the world, in fact, is not Islamic terrorist organizations, but the Russian Federation. The whole world must understand this,’ said Linko. ‘Arrangements will not be respected until we hit the Russian occupants in their teeth, like it was done today in Syria where, in response to the chemical attacks of the tyrant Assad and his friend Putin, the United States struck with missiles. It should have been done three years ago, when Ukraine was deprived of Donbass and the Crimea, when they occupied part of Georgia. Only such an answer and such a reaction of the international community, of the whole civilized world against terrorists, can stop their aggression. The world today must adopt a military doctrine against terrorists, provided that the main sponsor of terrorism in the world, in fact, is not Islamic terrorist organizations, but the Russian Federation. The whole world must understand this,’ said Linko. The MPs present in the hall supported his words with applause.

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“Trump has shot his supporters in the back” — Anonymous

US Syria Strike could hit Donbass and Europe too – Popov / By Eduard Popov / Translated for Fort Russ by J. Arnoldski / Fort Russ / April 8, 2017 / The missile strike on a Syrian airbase on April 7th by US ships in the Mediterranean Sea buried hopes for a warming of relations between the US and Russia with the ascent of Donald Trump’s White House. The prevailing opinion among Russian experts is that Trump was forced to pursue the previous administration’s foreign policy program in the Middle East. Others argue that Trump’s hardened actions and rhetoric towards Russia are the new US President’s bargaining for giving him a free hand in implementing his domestic program. Yet perhaps these explanations are marked by a degree of confusion and self-deception on our part. People in Russia see Trump like they want to see him. But Trump the Republican is merely trying to regain America’s role as the main cowboy which it lost after two terms of a Democratic President. Therefore, the clash of US and Russian interests in Syria (and not only Syria) was probably predetermined. And our attempts to explain this as the insidious influence of the Democrats is another self-deception. The US really did behave in the spirit of a cowboy in bombarding a sovereign state with 59 cruise missiles which hit a base where Russian troops were present. This was probably done even with a view towards them possibly being killed. Fortunately, this did not happen, but Syrian troops were killed. But who can guarantee that Russian or American troops won’t be killed next time? The situation in Syria’s skies was very disturbing in the last several months of Barack Obama’s presidency. Military experts repeatedly warned of the danger of a high-speed collision of Russian and American aircraft in Syria’s airspace. Yesterday, Russia suspended the memorandum on preventing air incidents over Syria, which means that the probability of a collision, even accidental, only increases. Yet Russia was compelled to take this step, just as it was forced to send the Admiral Grigorovich frigate to the Syrian coast. Russia is responding to US actions with a show of force. These non-allies could at any moment become enemies in not a cold, but hot war. Frightening news is coming from Europe as well. Western countries and their satellites are being locked in . . . READ MORE>>

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Sunday, April 2, 2017
(Brief update)

Intensity of fire along the contact line in DPR remains low / Essence of Time / April 2, 2017 / he Ukrainian army continues to shell the positions of the Donetsk People’s Republic People’s Militia (DPR PM) at the different parts of the front, but, on the whole, the intensity of fire along the contact line remains low, a source in the DPR PM informed a Rossa Primavera News Agency reporter on April 1st. According to DPR PM Command, during the day, one serviceman of the Republic was wounded. According to DPR intelligence, yesterday, on April 1st, 3 soldiers of the Ukrainian army were killed as a result of the explosion of 120mm mortar shell in the gun barrel of the Ukrainian “Molot” mortar. The incident occurred when the Ukrainian military were shelling the Donetsk filtration plant. According to recent information, on April 1st, the Ukrainian army violated ceasefire 35 times. There is no information on destruction and victims among the civilians. —Source: Rossa Primavera News Agency [Click map to enlarge.]

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Donetsk Defense: Situation Report, 04/02/2017 / DONi News / April 2, 2017 / The Ukrainian occupation forces continue to shell the territory of our Republic in violation of the obligations assumed earlier. The Kiev security forces continued to shell our positions, using mortars, infantry fighting vehicles, armored personnel carriers, antiaircraft guns, grenade launchers and small arms. In just one day, the enemy committed 35 occasions of the ceasefire violations. There are no destructions and casualties among civilians. Losses among the servicemen of the Republic amounted to one wounded. Yesterday, during the bombardment by the enemy of the Donetsk filtering station from a ‘newest’ 120-mm Ukrainian mortar Molot, another mine was blown up in the barrel of the mortar. Three Ukrainian servicemen died. In the meantime, Avdeyevka remains without water and electricity, as Kiev terrorists with constant bombarding disturbs repair works at the Donetsk filtering station and power lines. —Vice-Commander of the DPR People’s Militia Colonel Eduard Basurin, official translation by DONi News Agency

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OSCE recognizes Ukrainian Armed Forces Fire on Donbass from Cars Imitating Those of the Organization / Riafan.ru / Translated by Quemado Institute / April 2, 2017 / Representatives of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission have recorded a “clone” in the area of military conflict in Donbass—a car with stickers that imitate the symbols of the organization. This is stated in a recent mission report. In the command of the Armed Forces of the Donetsk People’s Republic, it was repeatedly stated that the Ukrainian siloviki posed as members of the Special Monitoring Mission and used “flying Dutchmen” for reconnaissance and organizing provocative attacks. Immediately, first deputy head of the OSCE SMM Alexander Hug promised to investigate the situation. According to preliminary data, in Avdeevka, the car with “men in the form of a military type” drove past a building on which an OSCE video camera was installed. This suggests that Ukrainian saboteurs are not afraid of exposure. As the DPR command was assured, in the main the equipment is used for reconnaissance, but also sometimes for provocative firing with small arms, including those directed against civilians living in the “gray zone”. According to the OSCE report, this case is not the first. Earlier, the same “clone” was recorded at the same place, but as far as is known, SMM does not take any actions to suppress the activities of its clones, except that it displays their detection in their reports.

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Poroshenko sends another 10,000 soldiers to the war in Donbass / News Front / April 3, 2017 / The spring call for urgent military service has begun in Ukraine again. A total of 14,135 Ukrainians are to be called upon. Of these, 9,135 people will be drafted into the Armed Forces of Ukraine, 4,200 new recruits will serve in the National Guard of Ukraine, and 800 more will go to the State Special Transport Service. Men aged 20 to 27 will serve, while 18- and 19-year-olds can join the army of their own free will. More truly, they will be called upon, but they will be sent to the service only on their own initiative. Of course, this is not a mobilization, when men, regardless of age, skills, presence or absence of diseases and bad habits, got into «pockets». But of these 14,000 people, about 10,000 will clearly go to the civil war, from where they may not return. It should be remembered that from 00:00 on April 1, the ceasefire regime was introduced in Donbass, which residents of the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics considered Poroshenko’s April Fools’ joke, since the shelling began literally 10 minutes after the midnight. In addition, the head of the General Staff, Viktor Muzhenko, wrote in his Twitter that ‘Russia is preparing to activate the military operations in Donbass’. This, say, is conducive to the events of the past two weeks. However, what events and when they occurred, Muzhenko shyly concealed.

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Yuriy Lutsenko (–Unian.info)

[Enemy Report:] Lutsenko says no general amnesty for Donbas separatists / Unian.info / April 2, 2017 / Ukrainian Prosecutor General Yuriy Lutsenko says that there will be no general amnesty for mercenaries who have been fighting against Ukraine in Donbas; every case will be considered separately in a legal procedure, according to Germany’s Bild. “Amnesty in Ukraine could be granted individually only, and only in case when amnesty is possible. In keeping with Ukrainian laws, murder, torture, rape, grievous bodily harm are not subject to amnesty. If this provision should be implemented under the Minsk agreement, we will scrutinize every petition separately. If a court establishes that a person has not committed the said types of crime, an amnesty could be granted,” Lutsenko told Bild in an interview. In his words, after Russian troops leave Donbas, Ukraine will have to address the issue of domestic mercenaries. “If 10,000 armed Russian troops really withdraw from Donbas and we will in the end be able to live in peace, an issue will arise – what we should do with the remaining 40,000 Ukrainian separatists. There should be no general amnesty. I, as Prosecutor General, can act only within the framework of Ukrainian legislation. The 40,000 should lay down arms and file individual clemency petitions. They should cop a plea and appeal for clemency,” Lutsenko said. While scrutinizing every particular case, the law enforcement agencies will verify whether an individual has not committed a serious crime that rules out amnesty. Quemado Institute comments: Lutsenko, like other Ukrainian politicians, refuses to acknowledge the spirit and purpose of Minsk. The amnesty clause is meant to help both sides. Without it, Poroshenko’s administration and all members of the Ukrainian Armed Forces could be charged with war crimes. Lutsenko also laughably pretends there are 10,000 Russian troops in Donbass. There are none. Lutsenko’s claim that he “can act only within the framework of Ukrainian legislation” may be technically correct, and brings up a dilemma inherent in the Minsk process: Poroshenko signed the agreements, but many members of the Ukrainian parliament consider them unconstitutional, a major impediment. [Source: unian.info/politics/1854964-lutsenko-says-no-general-amnesty-for-donbas-separatists.html]

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Kiev Comes Up With Ingenious Plan to Save Economy: Ask West for More Money / Sputnik / April 2, 2017 / Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has asked the EU to create an economic assistance program for Kiev similar to the Marshall Plan, the US initiative which helped Western Europe rebuild after World War II. However, observers say Ukrainians shouldn’t get their hopes up about any major economic assistance coming from Brussels any time soon. Last week, the Congress of the European People’s Party, the EU’s largest parliamentary group, passed an emergency resolution urging Brussels to develop a long-term plan to support Ukraine financially, politically and militarily. Ukraine’s president attended the summit personally to push the pan-European party to take steps to create this ‘Marshall Plan for Ukraine’. “Wonderful news from Malta on the results of my visit to the Congress of the European People’s Party,” Petro Poroshenko jubilantly wrote on his Facebook page Friday evening. “My thanks to the EPP family for the very important resolution on the initiative of our Lithuanian partners to develop a long-term plan to support Ukraine, a so-called ‘Marshall Plan for Ukraine,'” he added. According to the president, the passing of the resolution was “proof of the determination of Europe’s most influential political force” to support Ukraine and its aspirations for European integration. “I look forward to the further steps of the European partners in implementing the idea of creating a ‘Marshall . . . READ MORE>>

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So Who Annexed the Crimean Peninsula Then? / By Arina Tsukanova / Strategic Culture Foundation / March 28, 2017 / Due to the international media’s continued claims about the «annexation of Crimea», it’s been difficult for the citizens of the US and Europe to make sense of the details of the peninsula’s recent history. Exactly three years ago, on March 16, 2014, the Crimeans were offered a choice: to rejoin Russia or to return to the constitution of 1992 that proclaimed Crimea a legal, democratic, secular state whose relationship with Ukraine was based on bilateral agreements. That constitution was unilaterally abolished by Kiev on March 17, 1995, and here’s what’s surprising: no one at that time in the West demanded that the Ukrainian government stop violating the provisions of international law and the rights of the inhabitants of the Crimean peninsula. And then in 1995, special ops forces from the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) and the Armed Forces of Ukraine (ZSU) landed in Crimea and Sevastopol in order to establish «Ukrainian law and order», seizing the building housing the Supreme Council of the republic, where the administration of the acting president of Crimea, Yuriy Meshkov, was also headquartered, and demanding that he be turned over. Since Meshkov refused to vacate his office, they tried to poison him. Much later he described how his drink had been poisoned, and that later in the hospital he was refused proper medical care. Only an emergency evacuation to Moscow miraculously saved his life. In this manner, the real annexation of Crimea by Ukraine, which no one condemned, was completed in 1995. It all began in 1991 with a power grab by the Ukrainian parliament, which annexed the Crimean Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic, forcibly joining it to Ukraine despite the results of the January referendum about reestablishing Crimea’s autonomy. The annexation by Ukraine culminated in the revocation of the constitution and the liquidation of the office of the president of Crimea. However, no one in Europe or America introduced sanctions against this new Ukrainian state that had flagrantly trampled on the right of nations to self-determination: according to the 1989 census, three-quarters of the population of Crimea were not ethnic Ukrainians. From standpoint of the overwhelming majority of Crimea’s residents, a historical injustice was redressed in March 2014: Ukraine was stripped of what it had obtained illegally between 1991 and 1995 using deception and military force. In the eyes of Crimeans, Ukraine’s claims to the peninsula and the support of those claims by the West look very odd. In the 1990s, the world «overlooked» Ukraine’s annexation of Crimea, and no one was concerned that the rights of the inhabitants of the Crimean Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic had been violated. But when those citizens again took it into their heads to determine their own . . . READ MORE>>

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Thursday, March 30, 2017
(Brief update)

Click for video.

Donetsk Defense: Situation Report, 03/30/2017 / DONi News / March 30, 2017 / The situation in the Donetsk People’s Republic has sharply escalated in anticipation of the ceasefire introduction agreements’ coming into force from April 1. 20 localities of the Republic were subjected to shellings by the AFU with heavy artillery (152-mm and 122-mm calibre), tanks and mortars (120 mm and 82 mm calibre), as well as armoured vehicles, armoured personnel carriers, anti-aircraft guns, grenade launchers, and small arms. As a result of the AFU fire, 18 residential buildings were damaged, among them: three in Mineralnoye on Komsomolskaya St., 7, 9 and 11; two in Sakhanka village on Sergeyev St.; one in Dokuchayevsk locality on Lenin St. 82; and 12 in the Petrovsky district of Donetsk on Sokolovsky St., 2 and 3, Revyakin St. 10 and 17, Mark Ozerny St., 35 and 59, Karbyshev St. 13, Zelyony Gai St., 14, Karnavalnaya St., 77, Petrovsky St., 167, School No. 87 on Revyakin St., 2 and Populyarnaya St., 4, where an elderly woman, born in 1928, received a shrapnel wound. Besides, Kiev terrorists continued shelling the Republic’s vital facilities. Their “diligence” again de-energized the Donetsk filtration station, temporarily Kiev-controlled Avdeyevka and a part of Sakhanka locality. In total, for the past day, there were registered 70 occasions of ceasefire violations by the Armed Forces of Ukraine. The following localities came under brutal fire with application of weapons prohibited by the Minsk Agreements: Yasinovataya, Mineralnoye, Dokuchayevsk, Yasnoye, Sosnovskoye, Leninskoye, Oktyabr, Kominternovo, Sakhanka, Spartak, the area of the Airport district and the Petrovsky district of Donetsk. As a result of the shelling, one DPR People’s Militia soldier got wounded. I would like to dwell upon Kiev’s treatment to the AFU army and nationalist units of the National Guard of Ukraine. It became known that, unlike the AFU, the National Guard units’ rotation is carried out in a timely manner and under suitable conditions. According to information obtained from local residents, city councils of Novomikhailovka, Slavnoye, Taramchuk, Sladkoye, Stepnoye, Beryozovoye and Novotroitsk are preparing lists of empty houses for accommodation of personnel of the 18th separate special purposes Azov regiment of the Ukrainian National Guard which getting ready to replace 24th air assault battalion Aidar within the rotation. This comes connected with the fact that the old accommodation of Aidar units were thoroughly looted and destroyed. Thus, the weakening Kiev’s fear of the tenuously controlled mercenaries, makes it please the nationalists to the detriment and at the expense of the regular army servicemen and Ukraine’s population. —Vice-Commander of the DPR People’s Militia Colonel Eduard Basurin, official translation by DONi News Agency

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Pete John on Twitter
March 30, 2017 17:00 UTC

Situation Map – Click to enlarge.
“Ukie fights and shelling – Donetsk Airport, Spartak, Yasinovataya.”

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Lugansk Defense: Situation Report, 03/30/2017 / DONi News / March 30, 3017 / The situation in the responsibility zone of the LPR People’s Militia remains tense. Over the past 24 hours there were twenty two occasions of violations of the ceasefire regime by the enemy. The positions of our units in the areas of the localities of Kalinovo, Logvinovo, Frunze, Pervomaisk, Smeloye, Almaznoye, Veselyenkoye, Sokolniki, the area of the monument to Knyaz Igor, Kalinovka and Sanzharovka, as well as Lugansk suburb, were attacked. During shellings the enemy used artillery of 122-mm calibre, mortars of 120-mm and 82-mm calibre, IFV cannons, grenade launchers of various types and small arms. In total, over 400 projectiles, mortar rounds and grenades were fired at the Republic’s territory. The Ukrainian Command systematically violates the conditions for military weapons presence, envisaged by the Minsk Agreements, along the contact line, as well as continues to build up the combat potential of their units in the so-called ‘ATO’ zone. So, in the vicinity of the settlement of Krymskoye, at a distance of 3 km from the contact line, we identified the location of two batteries of self-propelled artillery units from the 24 brigade of the AFU. Temporary settlements of the units of 24 separate mechanized brigade were revealed by our reconnaissance: 1 battalion in the Kalinovo-Popasnaya area, 2 battalions in the area of Popsnaya locality, 3 battalions in the Kamyshevakha area. These units constantly fire at the positions of our units, which is also recorded by the JCCC and the SMM OSCE. According to the information available to us, the moral and psychological state of the servicemen of the 3rd separate mechanized brigade 24 is characterized as low, due to the continued bullying of officers against soldiers. So, it became known about the suicide committed by the servicemen of the above-mentioned unit on March 28 on the basis of constant money taxes from their commanders. A series of murders and mopping up of witnesses of military property’s embezzlement in the zone of the so-called ‘ATO’ continues. So, in Zaporozhye the body of the cameraman with traces of violent death was found, who worked on the front line. We became aware that he filmed and sent video material with facts of theft of weapons and ammunition to the Security Service. But instead of conducting the trial, the special services eliminated the witness. In turn, units of the LPR People’s Militia conduct combat training according to the plan: servicemen are engaged in servicing weapons and military equipment, improving the educational and material base. Training camps are continuing with reservists of artillery units. We do not succumb to the provocations of the Ukrainian Armed Forces and strictly comply with the Minsk agreements, but in case of gross violations from the Ukrainian side, we are ready to act decisively. —Official representative of the LPR People’s Militia Lieutenant-Colonel Andrey Marochko; official translation by DONi News Agency

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Elena Melnik (–Twitter.com/DPR People’s Council)

Official Commentary of Elena Melnik on Irina Gerashchenko’s words about integration of Donbass in Russia / By Elena Melnik / People’s Council of the Donetsk People’s Republic Official Website / March 30, 2017 / Vice Speaker of the Ukrainian Parliament Irina Gerashchenko stated that the Donbass Republics are increasingly integrating into the Russian Federation, and the introduction of external management at the enterprises of Ukrainian oligarchs allowed the LDPR to actually switch to self-sufficiency. The Ukrainian politician blamed the fighters of ‘ATO’ – the organizers of the blockade of Donbass – on the incident. Inconsistency and contrariety of the Ukrainian authorities’ actions become inalienable and distinctive features of their policies. For three years, the Kiev authorities in various ways have been trying to inflict maximum damage on the Donbass Republics, and now it expresses concern about the integration processes of the DPR and the LPR in Russia. For three years, Ukraine has not been paying pensions and social benefits to residents of the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics, and now it is unhappy that the Republics can make social payments on their own. For a long time, the Kiev regime has been blocking economic ties with the Donbass unofficially, and when Poroshenko approved the official status of the blockade, it turned out that this facilitates the integration of the DPR and the LPR into the Russian Federation. However, it is quite easy to explain such a sudden anxiety that Gerashchenko expressed right now. The financial and economic condition of Ukraine is close to catastrophic. Tranches from the IMF are postponed, and receipts from enterprises in the territories of the DPR and the LPR are completely stopped after the introduction of temporary administrations. Even Western partners pour oil on the fire – the court in London was lost with $ 3 billion in debt to Russia. For all this, someone will have to answer, so Ukrainian politicians are desperately trying to shift responsibility for what is happening to each other. —Elena Melnik, the DPR People’s Council deputy

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VIDEO: Woman killed in Donetsk as Ukraine destroys 2 homes in a artillery attack
By Patrick Lancaster – March 29, 2017

Click for video.
My full report: A woman has been killed when Ukraine shelling hit the same
neighbor hood in Kievsky district Donetsk that they bombarded in February.

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LPR People’s Militia ready to disengage forces and facilities near Stanitsa Luganskaya / DONi News / March 30, 2017 / The LPR People’s Militia is ready to implement the decision of the Contact Group on holding disengagement of forces and facilities near Stanitsa Luganskaya on April 6, the LPR People’s Militia Official Representative, Lieutenant colonel Andrei Marochko states. Following the results of the session of the Contact Group participants taking place in Minsk on March 29, the OSCE special envoy to the Contact Group Martin Saidik reported that the parties had agreed on ceasefire and disengagement of heavy arms on April 1 and also on disengagement of forces and facilities in the vicinity of Stanitsa Luganskaya on April 6. “The People’s Militia is always ready to disengage forces and facilities according to the Minsk agreements. We demonstrated it a few times,” pointed out Marochko.

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[Enemy report:] Poroshenko Instructs Army General Staff And Defense Ministry To Ensure Ceasefire In Donbas From April 1 / Ukranews.com / March 30, 2017 / President Petro Poroshenko has instructed the General Staff of the Ukrainian Armed Forces and the Ministry of Defense to ensure a ceasefire in the Donbas from April 1. Poroshenko’s spokesman Sviatoslav Tseholko announced this on Twitter, Ukrainian News Agency reports. “The president has issued all the necessary commands to the General Staff and the Defense Minister regarding a cease-fire regime from April 1,” he wrote. On March 29, the Trilateral Contact Group on resolution of the conflict in the Donbas (Ukraine, Russia, and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe) reached agreement on a ceasefire and extension of the working hours of crossings points on the line of contact in the Donbas from April 1. As Ukrainian News Agency earlier reported, the headquarters of the antiterrorist operation (ATO) has said that ATO forces are ready for a unilateral ceasefire from April 1. [Source: ukranews.com/en/news/488606-poroshenko-instructs-army-general-staff-and-defense-ministry-to-ensure-ceasefire-in-donbas-from]

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Serious situation in Donbass makes Russia to worry / Novorossia Today / March 30, 2017 / Russia is concerned over the deteriorating situation in Donbass and calls on the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to conduct unbiased monitoring in Donbass and other regions, Russia’s Foreign Ministry official spokeswoman Maria Zakharova told reporters. “We are concerned over the deteriorating situation in Ukraine’s southeast,” Zakharova said on Thursday. “According to reports of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission, in March the monitors registered up to 5,000 ceasefire violations every day,” she noted. Zakharova also said the OSCE SMM reports about military hardware spotted near the contact line in Donbass in violation of the agreement on withdrawing weapons. “We call on the mission to carry out impartial monitoring both in Donbass and other regions of Ukraine,” the diplomat said. [Photo: Maria Zakharova (–Kauilapele’s Blog)]

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Alexander Mercouris

BREAKING: Russia wins Judgment against Ukraine in London High Court / By Alexander Mercouris / The Duran / March 29, 2017 / High Court Judgment to expedite case clears way for Ukraine to be declared in default, legally requiring IMF funding of Ukraine to cease. / The High Court in London this morning granted Russia’s request for an expedited hearing (ie. summary Judgment) of its claim against Ukraine arising from Ukraine’s non-payment of the $3 billion loan Ukraine owes Russia. This is not the final Judgment in the case. That is however probably no more than a few weeks away. Reports say the High Court rejected all of Ukraine’s arguments that it should not be required to pay the loan for political reasons, and this together with the High Court’s decision to grant Russia an expedited hearing makes it now a virtual certainty that the High Court will shortly decide the case in Russia’s favour, and declare Ukraine in default on its loan. As those who have followed my writings on this question will know, this is what I have argued was likely to happen from the start. Indeed on strict legal principles it is difficult to see what other possible Judgment the High Court could have made. Ukraine is saying it will appeal today’s Judgment, presumably to the Court of Appeal and, if it loses there, presumably ultimately to the British Supreme Court. In English law an appeal does not however automatically delay implementation of a Judgment, and since today’s decision is procedural I cannot see what grounds for appeal there are, and I expect Ukraine’s appeal to be refused. This means that a final Judgment in the case may now be no more than weeks away. The big question therefore is what will happen when the High Court finally decides the case in Russia’s favour, and finds Ukraine in default of its $3 billion loan to Russia, as it is now almost certain to do. Will the IMF recognise that this is a legal declaration from the world’s most powerful commercial court that Ukraine is in default to . . . READ MORE>>

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Heroes of Donbass

Mozgovoy, Motorola, Givi
Ischenko, Dremov
Bednov, Anashenko

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“‘Normal’ is to treat your partners with respect, not to try to impose some of your ideas on others without taking into account their own views and their concerns, always to try to listen and to hear, and hopefully not to rely on a superiority complex, which was obviously the case with the Obama administration. They were obsessed with their exceptionality …” –Sergey Lavrov, March 29, 2017

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Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s interview with the National Interest Magazine, published on March 29, 2017 / Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation / March 29, 2017 / Question: I’d like to start by asking you about your forthcoming meeting with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, we’ve read in the press that the two of you may be meeting soon. Sergey Lavrov: So they say. Question: Could you perhaps tell us about your expectations and goals in dealing with Secretary Tillerson? Sergey Lavrov: Well, after the American election, soon after Election Day President Putin and President-elect Trump talked over the phone. It was a good but very general discussion touching upon the key issues in our relations, and of course the key international issues. And they agreed that they would continue being in touch and after the inauguration they talked again, and they reconfirmed the need to look for ways which would be effective in handling international problems. And of course to see what could be done to bring the bilateral relations to normalcy. They also agreed that Mr. Rex Tillerson and I would look into the agenda in some more details, and would also discuss the preparation for the presidential meeting which should take place when both countries, both leaders feel comfortable. And we met with Rex in mid-February in Bonn on the margins of the G-20 ministerial meeting, and covered quite a lot of the bilateral agenda. I briefed him about the relationship on bilateral issues with the Obama administration, the problems which accumulated during that period. We did not go into the substance of this, I just briefed him so that his team, which is still being assembled, could take a look at these issues and determine what kind of attitude they would have on them. And we discussed Syria, Iran, the Korean Peninsula, the Middle East in general, relations between Russia and the West, it was a very general, but rather substantive discussion, obviously it was the first contact and Mr.Rex Tillerson is just getting into the shoes of his new capacity. We discussed the possibility of personal meeting and have been continuing these discussions. As soon as we finalize them it will be announced. But my feeling is that from the point of view of personal relationship, we feel quite comfortable. I feel quite comfortable, I believe Rex had the same feeling, and our assistants should work . . . READ MORE>>

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Putin ready to meet Trump at upcoming Arctic summit in Finland / Rt.com / March 30, 2017 / Russian President Vladimir Putin has said he would be ready to meet with US President Donald Trump at the upcoming summit of Arctic countries in Finland, if the talks are properly prepared. “I believe Finland suits this purpose well, and Helsinki is a very convenient platform to organize an event like this,” Putin said, when asked if he thought a meeting between him and Trump was possible in Finland. Putin was speaking at the International Arctic Forum in Russia’s northwestern city of Arkhangelsk. However, he added that any meeting between him and Trump should be well prepared “by both sides.” “If this happens, we – and I personally – would be glad to take part in such an event. If not, the meeting [with Trump] could take place in the framework of the G20 summit [set to take place in July],” Putin concluded. Finnish President Sauli Niinisto said earlier that his country would “certainly be very happy to have the opportunity to hold such a summit.” The summit is set to take place at Finlandia Hall in Helsinki on September 18-20, 2017, according to the event’s official website. Russia considers the US a great power, and would like to get its relationship with Washington back on track, and claims alleging anything else are lies and fiction, Putin said. The Russian president added that, while relations between Moscow and Washington are currently “at zero level,” he counts on the situation improving someday – and the sooner the better. The anti-Russian card is being played by various political forces in the US to reinforce . . . READ MORE>>

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Putin and Company is a Mafia Attached to a Pipeline / By Vladimir Suchan / Logos Politicos / March 27, 2017 / Turning Russia into a resource colonial, mono-(anti-culture) appendix of global capitalism under Putin and his cronies: Putin’s and the Kremlin’s non-existent “economic genius” and performance is almost entirely (by 95%) determined by the world prices of oil and gas and their fluctuations (besides the unsustainable levels of theft, plunder and graft for which they are fully responsible). In other words, world prices of oil and gas explain nearly all the overall dynamic (that is not the use or distribution) of the Russian economy under its regressive oligarchic rule: [See graphs at source.] The problem of capitalism in Russia is greatly exacerbated and even multiplied by the character of Russian post-Soviet . . . READ MORE>>

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Saturday, March 25, 2017
(Brief update)

Donetsk Defense: Weekly Situation Report 03/24/2017 / DONi News / March 24, 2017 / Good day! Ukraine’s special operations forces and the Security Service of Ukraine still attempt to destabilize the situation in the Donetsk People’s Republic by carrying out terrorist attacks and to spread panic among civilians. Today at 08:50 Ukraine’s sabotage-reconnaissance group consisting of three people conducted a shot with rocket anti-tank launchers, the fragments of which hit the residential house near the military base of the defense establishment in the downtown of Donetsk. As a result of the act of terrorism, the citizen Sukhova received shrapnel wounds, she was provided with medical treatment. Guard forces which immediately arrived at the scene repelled an attack. Search and blocking of the group of terrorists in Donetsk and other districts of the Republic are carried out. Due to continuing terrorism act threats, we are asking residents of the Republic to keep their vigilances and help security agencies and law-enforcements agencies reveal Ukrainian terrorists and warn about their attempts of sabotages and acts of terrorism. I’m calling on the OSCE Mission to record new Kiev’s act of terrorism and to draw international community’s attention to criminal activities of Ukrainian special services. Last week, from March 18 till 24, in formations and units of the People’s Militia of the Donetsk People’s Republic main efforts were focused on carrying out command post exercises and on summing up results and also on drilling military readiness of units. Tank and IVF crews passed driving trainings. And with other units there were carried out trainings on study subjects and on tactics on the defensive. Over the past 24 hours there were registered 85 occasions of violations of the ceasefire regime on the part of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. The enemy applied heavy artillery, tanks, mortars of various caliber, IFVs, anti-aircraft installations, grenade launchers and small arms. Altogether, over the past week there were registered 467 occasions of violations of the ceasefire regime on the part of the enemy. Ukraine’s military launched 4,950 projectiles and mortar-shells on the Republican territory with the weapons prohibited. The Armed Forces of Ukraine shelled 28 localities of the Republic. There were seriously damaged the following localities: ZAYTSEVO, GORLOVKA, YASINOVATAYA, KRUTAYA BALKA, SPARTAC, KOMINTERNOVO, DOKUCHAEVSK, YASNOE, OCTYABR, ELENOVKA, LUGANSK, the suburbs of the Volvo-Center and airport and also the Petrovsky, Kirovsky and Kiyevsky districts of Donetsk on the territories of which there were damaged and destroyed 41 houses. Eight residents of the Republic . . . READ MORE>>

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Ukrainian sabotage-recon groups became highly active on DPR territory / Essence of Time / March 24, 2017 / The Ukrainian army intensified the shelling. The Ukrainian sabotage-recon groups became highly active on DPR territory, a source in the Donetsk People’s Republic People’s Militia (DPR PM) informed a Rossa Primavera News Agency reporter on March 24th. / During the day, the Ukrainian military were shelling the residential areas of Gorlovka. The enemy was also provoking trench combat in the suburbs of the city. 2 houses on Marshal Peresypkin and Bogun streets were damaged. A 61-years old man was injured. The situation is tense in the area of Zaytsevo, the Gagarin (Glubokaya) coal mine, the villages of Shirokaya Balka and Zheleznaya Balka. Very intense fire is observed on the Donetsk part of the front. The Ukrainian military shelled the village of Spartak, where a house on Pobeda street burnt down as a result of the direct hit of the shell. Outbuilding on Mira street burnt down. Moreover, the village of Yakovlevka was shelled with 152mm mortars and tanks. A shell struck the roof of the building on Chernogorskaya street in the Petrovsky district of Donetsk. 2 houses on Andrusov street and one house on Lieutenant Nikolenko street in the village of Trudovskiye were damaged. The Ukrainian army is provoking trench combat in the area of Avdeevka industrial zone and in the area of “Volvo-Center”. Today, at 8.50 AM, the Ukrainian saboteurs opened fire on one of the buildings of DPR PM military unit in downtown Donetsk with a rocket-propelled grenade launcher. The fragments of the rounds struck the house injuring a woman. The [sabotage-recon] group is being traced. In the south of DPR, 4 houses in the village of Zaichenko were damaged as a result of the night shelling conducted by the Ukrainian army. The village of Sosnovskoye also came under Ukrainian military’s fire. Electric power was lost in the village of Kominternovo. The bodies of 2 Ukrainian army soldiers, killed while attempting to seize the position of DPR People’s Militia on March 20th, were passed to the Ukrainian side today. According to recent information, during the past day, March 23rd, the Ukrainian army violated ceasefire 85 times. During the past week, the Ukrainian military intensified the shelling of DPR territory. —Source: Rossa Primavera News Agency

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Explosion at Balakleya munitions depot (–Daily Mail/YouTube/Oleksi Tamrazov)

Explosions continue going off at Ukraine ammo depot / TASS / March 25, 2017 / Special equipment, including two fire tanks and three fire vehicles, are used at the depot now. / KIEV / Detonations continue at the ammo depot in Ukraine’s Kharkov region, where the fire was extinguished, press service of the national emergencies service said on Saturday. “As of 07:25 on Saturday, occasional explosions of various intensity continue at the technical territory of the depot,” the press service said. Special equipment, including two fire tanks and three fire vehicles, are used at the depot now, the press service said, adding gas supplies had been cut, and railway communication at the local station was stopped. The air communication is closed in the area of 40 km. The now-infamous fire broke out at the military depot in near the city of Balakleya at around 3.00 a.m. local time (0100GMT) on Thursday. Chief Military Prosecutor Anatoly Matios said the fire and a series of blasts were recorded in several storage facilities for artillery shells and missiles. Until recently, the ammo depot in Balakleya, encompassing an area of 368 hectares, was considered to be Europe’s largest facility for storing weapons. The depot may house up to 150,000 tonnes of armaments. Media reports say currently there are some 125,000 tonnes of munitions there. Earlier, Ukrainian Prime Minister Vladimir Groisman said that the blaze had engulfed nearly half of the entire territory of the military facility and extinguishing it “may take up to seven days.” Ukraine’s top military brass labeled the blasts at the ammo depot an ‘act of sabotage.’ Meanwhile, a spokesman for the Lugansk people’s militias said that Kiev’s military may have blown up the depot to cover up the mass shortage of munitions there.

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VIDEOs: Detonation of Ammunition Depot in Kharkov Region
March 24, 2017

Click for video.

Click for video.

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@OceanEchoes on Twitter
March 24, 2017 23:55 UTC

“I am thinking of all the Uragan & Tochka-U missiles that blew up in Ukraraine at that depot, that won’t be fired at Donbass civilians.”

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Explosions in Balakley began after a booze in the warehouse of Ukrainian generals – an eyewitness / Anti-Fashist.com / Autotranslated by Quemado Institute / March 24, 2017 / The fire in the ammunition depot of the Ministry of Defense in the Balakley of the Kharkov region began immediately after the drunken Ukrainian generals left it, who had a drinking party in this place. This statement was made on the air of the Ukrainian news channel NewsOne by a local resident of Balakleya. “I know that before the explosions there was a check: the generals came, drank at the base and after their departure explosions began, what they did there is unknown, I can say that the situation with the explosions testifies to the negligence of the generals,” he said. He also considers it doubtful that the fire in warehouses arose from the dumping of an explosive device from a drone. The man expressed the opinion that the cause was far more likely to be the negligence of servicemen who are often in a state of intoxication. “I do not think they were drones because there are a lot of soldiers on the base who drink all the time, all the local people know about it.” All Balakleya knows about this, they are plopping in. There (nearby) there is a Shinok cafe, they drink there Constantly,” said a local resident. At the same time, he described how the situation in the city was going from the very beginning of the explosions. “I woke up from the explosions around 3 am (on Thursday, March 23rd – ed.) From the base everything was blazing and the explosions were rumbling, I took out the children, there were a lot of cars on the way, people tried to leave the city on their own, the evacuation was organized by the authorities about 6 -7 am.” The man also complained that the city now has a difficult situation with food, in the shops huge queues, pharmacies are closed, and in homes have not yet turned on gas. Recall, the largest in Ukraine arsenal in the Balakley region caught fire on the night of March 23. The ignition of the subsequent detonation is recorded immediately on several sites. According to the LNR, the Ukrainian authorities hide the actual figures of the wounded as a result of a fire in the arsenal. “As a result of the explosions in Balaklee, injuries of varying severity were received by more than 70 servicemen of the Armed Forces and civilian personnel,” the representative of the People’s Militia of the People’s Democratic Republic of Belarus Andrei Marochko said today. He is convinced that Kiev is hiding this information, since there are no blood transfusion systems and blood donations in Ukraine’s military hospitals, and there are no “other necessary means to provide emergency medical care to the victims,” Marachko added.

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Thursday, March 23, 2017
(Brief update)

Ukraines biggest ammunition depot was blown up today in Balakleya, in the Kiev-controlled Kharkov region. Video shows denotations of Grad and Tochka U missiles. The warehouse can continue detonating for 4 days. No one can get in. The evacuation zone is up to 7 km. The Balakleya ammunition warehouse was one of the largest in Europe.

Watching this video is like watching the face of God. Every missile that fires is one that will not kill the women and children of Donbass.

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Ukrainian Ammo Dump Blown-Up Near Donbass Region: Balaklay Ammunition Warehouses Explode and Burn on March 23, 2017 / “Diversion of Poroshenko” near Kharkov: details / ThereAreNoSunglasses (translated from Nakanune.ru Russian State Media Supervision Service) / March 23, 2017 /A catastrophe at military depots near Kharkov is considered a diversion. The total area of ​​storage facilities of 122- and 152-mm howitzer shells, rockets to salvo fire systems and even, according to some information, ballistic missiles “Tochka U” is amazing – 368 hectares. According to official data, the total mass of ammunition in the warehouse was 138 thousand tons. Here is how the main military prosecutor of the Kiev regime Anatoly Matios describes what happened: “According to preliminary information (now as a result of investigative actions) of the investigative-prosecutorial group of the military prosecutor’s office of the Kharkov garrison and the investigation department of the SBU in the Kharkiv region (which are on the scene), due to the sabotage last night, at 2:45, at several storage sites (Tank and artillery shells 125 and 152 mm) near the city of Balakleya in the Kharkov region there was an explosion (a fire broke out), which caused detonation of ammunition.” The total area of the arsenal is 368 hectares and 138 thousand tons of ammunition. From the place of detonation through the establishment of the blockade, a conditional seven kilometer cordon of the zone of danger of the spread of ammunition is organized. There are no data on human casualties. On the site of events, a staff is working as part of the regional leadership and law enforcement agencies. On the instructions of the Ministry of Defense, a board with a commission headed by the deputy defense minister for armament of Pavlovsky flew from Kiev. Taking into account the possibility of increasing the area of detonation of ammunition and their dispersal, an evacuation of local population from the settlements of Verbovka and Yakovenkovo is organized . All necessary measures are taken to prevent the loss of human life, to establish eyewitnesses of sabotage and to examine the place of events. According to Matios, the heavy fire fighting equipment of the Defense Ministry arrived at the scene of the events. Prepares to take off the UAV to establish the actual volumes of the affected areas of the arsenal. The State Border Service has strengthened the border control regime in the north-eastern direction. It should be noted that there is a fire train in the warehouse itself, and fire tanks, at least, were in 2011, when the exercises were held there just for a similar case , therefore, probably, the prosecutor exaggerates the merits of the “emergency response” of the Defense Ministry. He does not have information on other items: No UAVs will allow to determine in the morning the area covered by fires and explosions – due to smoke and turbulent flows on the borders of the burning area, caused by the rising streams of hot air (more than 100 km / h). Because of the spread of not only the fragments of shells, but also missiles, no investigative actions “at the scene” can not be carried out. Maximum, investigators who arrived only a couple of hours ago from Kharkov, could find and interview those who are in a state of shock, but managed to escape, sentries from which nothing coherent and reliable can be achieved simply because witnesses can not determine at night where and how It all began. And for objective reasons – 368 hectares are simply not visible from one point and it is impossible to speak about “simultaneous” ignition (and diversion).

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[Enemy report:] Blasts at Balakliia ammo depot continue, people stay in shelters, evacuation underway / En.censor.net.ua / March 23, 2017 / Evacuation of civilians is underway in Balakliia, the Kharkiv region, where the local ammunition depot has been impacted by blasts since last night, Kharkiv journalist Yurii Borshch, whose relatives reside in Balakliia, told Censor.NET. “The blasts of the ammunition at the military unit A1352 started in Balakliia at around 2:30 a.m. The explosions were very powerful. People started panicking. Due to the Donbas events, city shelters and basements have been put in proper order, with sufficient markings of the locations in place. So the people were quite organized to move to the basements. They remain in shelters, sometimes getting up to the surface. Stationary phone lines do not operate in the city. Some houses’ windows were damaged by the shock wave, some balconies cracked. Some say the missiles are reaching neighboring Borshchivka village. The evacuation of civilians is underway in the city. It started really fast, during the first hour after the blasts. People are being taken to Krasnyi Lyman, Lozova, Shevelivka, Volokhiv Yar. An evacuation point has been set in the city downtown. The explosions continue,” the reporter said. He added that local radio station has announced a call to get into shelters and provided the addresses of the shelters. Borshch said the issue with the military base in the city has persisted over the years. Local residents and authorities have many times asked to solve the problem of storing ammunition this close to the city. Recently, the depot was allegedly full. It’s one of the biggest depots in Ukraine and Eastern Europe, the reporter said. At the same time, it lacks modern surveillance cameras and IR sensors. It’s an old Soviet-time military base. “If someone wanted to commit an act of sabotage, it’s quite simple to do that. The military say it was an arson at several spots,” Borshch said. He said there was no information on casualties, as well as no information on the garrison town within the military unit. Railway connection has been halted due to proximity to the explosion site. [Source: en.censor.net.ua/n433108]

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Donetsk Defense: Situation Report, 03/23/2017 / DONi News / March 23, 2017 / The situation in the Donetsk People’s Republic remains tense. Over the past 24 hours, there were registered 63 occasions of ceasefire violations by the Armed Forces of Ukraine. The following localities underwent the most intensive enemy shellings with application of weapons prohibited by the Minsk Agreements: Gorlovka, Yasinovataya, Krytaya Balka, Dokuchayevsk, Kominternovo, Spartak, the area of the Airport, the Petrovsky and the Kievsky districts of Donetsk. In total, 16 Republic’s localities were shelled with the AFU’s heavy artillery of 152mm and 122mm calibre, tanks, mortars of 120mm and 82mm calibre, as well as IFV and armoured personnel carriers’ arms, antiaircraft guns, grenade launchers, and small arms. As a result of the fire from the AFU part, eight residential houses of Donetsk suffered. Among these: In the Petrovsky district: five houses at the addresses Andrusov Street, 7, 8, 12; Serafimovich Street, 8; centre for primary health care along the street Anachanko. – In the Kievsky district: three houses along the street Zhelyabova, 15, 16, 17. Multiple shrapnel wounds were received by a civilian, born in 1994, a young mother who was on the street with a three-month-old child during the shelling, and had to cover the child with her body from the spreading fragments of mortar shells of Kiev terrorists, and was wounded and taken to the hospital. A civilian woman, 1960, was wounded in the leg as a result of sniper fire in the locality of Krytaya Balka. *** The scale of weapons and ammunition’s embezzlement from the Ukrainian Armed Forces’ warehouses reached such a level that, in order to conceal these facts and avoid punishment, they carry out the destruction of their rocket and artillery arsenal. So, tonight, at one of the arsenals of the AFU, located in the Kharkov region, near the town of Balakleya, and which has about 140 thousand tons of ammunition stored, their ignition occurred. We note that to the warehouse’s blazing took place on the eve of the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense’s inspection arrival, headed by Deputy Defense Minister for Armaments General Pavlovsky. One doesn’t need to be a prophet to say that this is not the first and not the last case of theft of state property by Ukrainian criminals. *** zone. In connection with the disastrous shortage of personnel, the Ukrainian military command goes to any measures to eliminate this problem. Military units of Kramatorsk spread allotments in the industrial enterprises to mobilize 50 men aged from 18 to 64 years. The personnel of enterprises that would refuse to serve the Ukrainian criminal regime must retire and hide from the draft. A shortage of personnel is also registered in nationalist battalions. So, in Krasnoarmeisk unit of the Ukrainian volunteer corps “Right Sector” there was established a camp, where they conduct the campaign activities among the population on the entry into their ranks. In turn, units of the Republic’s People’s Militia continue to improve combat training. Trainings with various kinds of units that are not occupied with the protection of the borders of our Republic are constantly undergoing training at the proving grounds. At the end of the week, all the subjects of combat training will be tested. We are ready to defend our interests and protect the integrity of the Republic from any aggression of the criminal regime of Ukraine. —Vice-Commander of the DPR People’s Militia Colonel Eduard Basurin, official translation by DONi News Agency

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Probability of Kiev resuming full-fledged military operations extremely high / DONi News / March 23, 2017 / The probability of the resumption by the Ukrainian troops of full-scale military operations in Donbass is extremely high, stated DPR Head Alexander Zakharchenko during the Q&A session with the residents of the Donetsk region under Ukrainian control. “In order to reset the situation that has now developed, Poroshenko has only one way out – to start military operations. Proceeding from this, I suspect that Ukraine has such plans, and it is very likely that these plans will be undertaken. Unfortunately, the chances are high for the development of the military situation that has developed,” Zakharchenko noted. However, he stressed that the forces of the People’s Republic of Donetsk are ready to repel the attack on the part of Ukrainian units. Meanwhile, the military solution, according to Zakharchenko, will not stop the confrontation in Donbass.

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Self-proclaimed Donetsk republic opens unofficial mission in Greece / Indian Subcontinent (from TASS) / March 21, 2017 / ATHENS / The eastern Ukraine’s self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) opened an unofficial mission in Greece Tuesday, a TASS correspondent reported. “On behalf of the DPR Foreign ministry and all of the country’s people, accept our words of sincere gratitude for your contribution into the DPR’s process of becoming an independent member of the international community,” reads a congratulation letter by the republic’s spokeswoman Natalya Nikonorova. ‘The opening of a DPR Representation center in Greece is an important step in strengthening information, cultural and economic ties between the Donetsk People’s Republic and your country,” says the letter, read out during the opening ceremony. “The center’s activities will become another link between our peoples that allows us to create a dialogue with residents of European countries,” Nikonorova said. “We are sincerely grateful for the support of the people of Donbass.” The head of the DPR Representation center in Greece and a co-organizer of Greece’s Safe Donbass society Andreas Zaferis said during the ceremony that it was the third such center opened in European Union states. “Soon, such centers will open in other European countries,” he added. Panagiotis Lafazanis, a Greek ex-minister who now heads the non-parliamentary Popular Unity party, wished good luck and victory to “the people of DPR, who strife for independence.” Greek government officials, however, stressed that the center has no official diplomatic status. “Greece has never recognized the self-proclaimed Donetsk republic,” a Greek Foreign Ministry spokesman said. “Any actions that undermine the territorial integrity of Ukraine are in stark contrast with the established stance of the Greek government.”

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Armed Donetsk miner (–© Rosiya na vsegda)

Donetsk coal is now rolling to Russia, Donbass blockade to cost Kiev 3.3 billion € in lost revenue and 75,000 jobs / Translated by Tom Winter / Sott.net (from Fort Russ; original source: Sputnik France) / March 22, 2017 / Shipments of coal to Russia have begun, Alexander Zakharchenko, President of the self-proclaimed People’s Republic of Donetsk, told reporters. This, following on the heels of the commercial blockade of Donbass organized by Ukrainian radicals at the end of January. After the Ukrainian radicals imposed their rail blockade on Donbass, the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) took up the delivery of this fuel to Russia Tuesday [March 14]. “Let us remember, where did this production used to go? It went to Russia,” said Alexander Zakharchenko, the leader of the republic. “Yes, it’s a tough process that will take up to three months. But today, the first 95 cars are gone. This is a test lot.” There are, however, some bureaucratic and marketing difficulties, but these problems are being resolved, Zakharchenko added. Meanwhile in Kiev, a demonstration to support the commercial blockade of the Donbass was held Tuesday night. Hundreds of people gathered in the Maidan Square to call for the continuation of the blockade and even to invite the volunteers to strengthen it. The Ukrainian radicals began the Donbass rail blockade at the end of January, disrupting coal deliveries from the region. The self-proclaimed republics of Donetsk and Lugansk responded by setting up external management of companies under Ukrainian jurisdiction. Further, on Friday March 3, the leader of the DPR Alexander Zakharchenko announced a trade blockade against Kiev. The shortage of coal has forced Kiev to introduce extraordinary measures to conserve energy resources. According to Prime Minister Vladimir Groïsmann, the blockade of Donbass will cost Ukraine dearly: the country will lose 3.3 billion euros in revenue and 75,000 jobs. At the end of February the leaders of the People’s Republics adopted a joint declaration informing Kiev that coal deliveries would not resume, and that companies under Ukrainian jurisdiction would be placed under external management if the blockade was not lifted before 1st of March. Kiev did not react to this statement.

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Donbass, East Ukraine On Its Way To Becoming Own Country By Default / By Brandon Turbeville / Novorossiyaupdates (from Activist Post) / March 23, 2017 / After having fallen prey to Western machinations of destabilization and civil war, it is apparent that there may now be irreparable differences between the East and West portions of Ukraine. With the East of Ukraine more in line with Russia and the West more in line with Western Europe, all compounded by years of civil war and outright persecution and atrocities committed by the fascist Ukrainian forces, the DPR and LPR are showing signs of going their separate ways and breaking away from West Ukraine in a more final fashion. When Crimea voted to reunite with Russia after a long separation, many suspected the DPR and LPR would follow suit. In fact, there was a movement within both republics to do the same. However, geopolitical and diplomatic concerns on the part of Russia prevented such a vote from ever solidifying a “reunification” with Russia. A vote to reunify with Russia in the same fashion as Crimea would have no doubt caused a diplomatic emergency between Russia and the warmongering West. Indeed, it may have even caused military confrontation. However, after time passed and the impasse between East and West Ukraine has become more pronounced, it appears that East Ukraine is making moves toward becoming its own country even without formal recognition. East Ukraine – DPR and LPR (Donbass)– may very well become their own nation by default and by natural progression of events. Eastern Ukraine (Donbass) has, for at least a year, begun working on setting up the framework of a governmental system, complete with a political framework, the seizing of banks, and the operation of various industries. Greater centralized military structure, as necessitated by the current conflict, has also become a reality. Ironically, it appears Donbass is more so on its way to becoming its own independent country as a result of the actions of the fascists of East Ukraine than perhaps it would have been if simple neutrality and peace would have been observed by Kiev. Every act of force by Kiev has served to push Donbass further and further away from Ukraine and more toward independence. These acts of force are also pushing Donbass toward greater cooperation with Russia, whose involvement in Crimea, political opposition to Western destabilization, and involvement in East Ukraine (still vociferously denied by the Kremlin) is the only reason Western forces did not simply roll over separatists and establish NATO bases on Russia’s border in 2014. In February, in a possible message to the West and a probable step forward in supporting the independence if not the “reunification” with Russia, President Vladimir Putin announced that Russia would be recognizing all “administrative acts” coming from the. . . READ MORE>> Quemado Institute comments: This lengthy analysis seems mostly right, except for the point that Russia’s “involvement” is far from “the only reason” Western forces did not roll over the separatists. In many ways, the Kremlin actually held the separatists back by discouraging them through strong-arm politics from fighting in their own defense. This was in order to appease the West and appear to be complying with Minsk, which of course Russia was not a party to. The DPR/LPR militias nevertheless held their own for over a year with almost no Russian political or diplomatic support, and certainly no military assistance. The militias are a powerful well-armed fighting force. They the primary reason the DPR/LPR are now nearing independence.

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Protest, Sberbank of Russia, Kiev (-EPA/Sergey Dolzhenko)

Russian banks willing to withdraw from Ukrainian market, Kremlin says / TASS / March 23, 2017 / The operations of the Russian banks in Ukraine are dangerous now, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said. / MOSCOW / Russian lenders would like to withdraw from the Ukrainian market, as their operations there are in danger now, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Thursday. “(Russian) bankers have voiced their position, which is probably more important since they act in the best interest of their shareholders first of all,” he said, adding that they are willing to “minimize the potential damage in case of an attempt to withdraw from the Ukrainian market as soon as possible.” According to Peskov, “Ukraine is not a country with attractive investment climate at the moment.” “This is a country with quite a threatening investment environment and high risks for investors,” Kremlin spokesman said. He assumes that the sanctions Kiev levied against Russian lenders threaten not only subsidiaries of Russian banks but “Ukrainian economy, meaning Ukrainian taxpayers, common Ukrainians.” “Of course, now the operations of those (Russian) banks (in Ukraine) are in danger since further actions of the Ukrainian authorities are unpredictable,” Peskov said, adding that the country’s authorities “are often unable to restore order in terms of opposing extremists.” On March 16, Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko imposed sanctions against five banks with Russian state capital operating on the Ukrainian market. Restrictions were introduced against Sberbank, VS Bank, Prominvestbank, VTB Bank and BM Bank for one-year period. Sanctions include a ban on withdrawal of funds outside of Ukraine, as well as payment of dividends, interest, return of interbank deposits and loans, funds from correspondent accounts of subordinated debt. The ban also concerns distribution of profits and capital of these five banks. Ukraine’s National Bank said then that all lenders with Russian capital operating in the country negotiated potential sale transactions. Russian credit organizations later confirmed those plans.

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Tuesday, March 21, 2017
(Full report)

Donetsk Defense: Situation Report, 03/21/2017 / DONi News / March 21, 2017 / The situation in the Donetsk People’s Republic remains tense. Over the past day, there were registered 59 occasions of ceasefire violations by the Armed Forces of Ukraine. The following localities underwent the most intensive enemy shellings with application of weapons prohibited by the Minsk Agreements: Yasinovataya, Alexandrovka, Dokuchayevsk, Kommunarovka, Kominternovo, Bezymennoye, Leninskoye, Sakhanka, Spartak, the areas of the Airport and the Volvo Center of Donetsk. In total, 17 Republic’s localities were shelled with the AFU’s heavy artillery (152mm and 122mm calibre), tanks, mortars (120mm and 82mm calibre), as well as IFV and armoured personnel carriers’ arms, antiaircraft guns, grenade launchers, and small arms. Nine houses sustained damage in the AFU fire. Thus, in Kommunarovka locality a kindergarten and school were damaged on Tsentralnaya St., 2b, 4, two houses on Oktyabrskaya St., 67, 68, one private house in Zaitsevo village on Yesenin St., 8. One house was damaged in Alexandrovka locality on Ordzhonikidze St., 29, and the AFU shells damaged two apartments in a five-story house in Dokuchayevsk locality on Lenin St., 100 and one private house on Bazarnaya St., 8. Due to the genocide of the Donbass people, one civilian, born in 1968, received shrapnel wounds. Losses among the People’s Militia personnel made three killed and two wounded. It is important to note that Ukrainian forces’ losses as a result of the March 20 failure near Kominternovo amounted to: 12 killed and 14 wounded fighters, among . . . READ MORE>>

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Click to enlarge.

Situation sharply escalated on the southern part of the front in DPR / Essence of Time / March 20, 2017 / On the Gorlovka and Donetsk direction, the situation is unchanged. However, on the southern part of the front, the situation is sharply escalated, a source in the Donetsk People’s Republic People’s Militia (DPR PM) informed a Rossa Primavera News Agency reporter on March 20th. On the Gorlovka and Donetsk directions, the situation remains tense. The Ukrainian army is provoking trench combat in the areas of Zaytsevo, of Avdeevka industrial zone, and in the western suburbs of the Petrovsky district in Donetsk. The tensest situation is observed on the Mariupol part of the front. In the morning, the Ukrainian army attempted to break through the DPR PM positions in the area of Kominternovo. The attack was backed by the artillery. According to DPR PM Command, the Ukrainian side lost 10 militaries killed and another 5 wounded. One BMP-1 infantry fighting vehicle was destroyed. 3 DPR servicemen were wounded. Combat continues on this part of the front. DPR PM Command also informed that, during the day, another one serviceman was wounded as a result of the shelling conducted by the Ukrainian army. DPR PM intelligence presented new facts of the non-combat loses among the Ukrainian military. In the area of Dzerzhinsk, 4 soldiers of the 72nd independent mechanized brigade of the Ukrainian army were killed, and another 3 soldiers of the 3rd battalion of the 80th independent assault brigade were wounded as a result of the shootout with the militants of one of the Ukrainian nationalist battalion. According to recent information, during the past day, March 19th, the Ukrainian army violated ceasefire 39 times. 13 towns and villages of DPR came under Ukrainian artillery’s fire. —Source: Rossa Primavera News Agency

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Click for Video in Russian (no subtitles)

Donetsk Situation Report, 20.03.2017 / Novorossia Vision / March 20, 2017 / The situation in the Donetsk People’s Republic, despite the decrease in the intensity of the shelling by the Ukrainian artillery, remains tense. Over the past day, the Armed Forces of Ukraine violated the ceasefire 39 times. The most intense fire impact of the enemy, with weapons prohibited by the Minsk Agreements, was applied to the following localities: Yasinovataya, Yakovlevka, Dokuchaevsk, Kominternovo, Bezymennoye, Leninskoye, Sakhanka, Spartak, the area of the airport and the Petrovsky district of Donetsk city. In total, the AFU shelled 13 localities of the Republic, with 122 and 152mm artillery, tanks, 82 and 120mm mortars, as well as infantry fighting vehicles, armored personnel carriers, anti-aircraft systems, grenade launchers and small arms. As a result of the AFU shelling, there were damaged two residential houses in the Petrovsky district of Donetsk city, N 41 in Lyotchikov St and N 1 in Lazo St. In the shelling of our positions one soldier of the People’s Militia was wounded. According to our intelligence, in the area of the locality of Dzerzhinsk arrived a group of officers from the troops command of radiation, chemical and biological protection of the Armed Forces, numbering up to 10 people. The purpose of the group’s work is to assess possible disruptions in the operation of the phenolic plant premises, since the Armed Forces units are located on its territory, together with equipment and ammunition. We continue to record non-combat losses among the AFU military. In particular, in the area of the locality of Dzerzhinsk, in the 72nd separate mechanized brigade, as a result of an armed conflict with nationalist battalions, there were killed four soldiers. In addition, in the 3rd battalion of the 80th separate assault brigade, located in the zone of responsibility of the 72nd brigade, there were wounded three soldiers. The reason for the shootings was the redistribution of control over zones of smuggling flows. These facts are hidden from the public, so as not to discredit the military command. Our units continue combat training. In particular, the training is conducted to bring them to the highest degrees of combat readiness, as well as training with special forces units to counter the enemy’s subversive groups. –-Vice-Commander of the DPR Defense Ministry operative command Donetsk,Colonel Eduard Basurin

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Ukrainian army shelled Gorlovka suburbs and DPR communities in south / Essence of Time / March 21, 2017 / As result of the shelling conducted by the Ukrainian army during the past night, one house was damaged in the village of Zaytsevo, and electric power was lost in 3 villages in the Novoazovsky district of Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR), Donetsk News Agency informed on March 21st. “A house on Esenin str. 8 was completely destroyed by the direct hit of the shell,” the Acting Head of the Gorlovka city administration Ivan Prikhodko said commenting on the night shelling of Zaytsevo. “Trench combat were underway throughout the past day. Power lines were damaged yesterday in the evening. As a result, the residents Naberezhnoye, Kominternovo, and Sakhanka were left without electricity. There is no gas supply in Kominternovo,” the Acting Head of the Priazovsky district administration Anatoliy Yanovsky informed Donetsk News Agency. Rossa Primavera News Agency informed earlier that the tensest situation is observed on the Mariupol part of the front. In the morning, March 20th, the Ukrainian army attempted to break through the DPR positions in the area of the village of Kominternovo. —Sources: Rossa Primavera News Agency, “Essence of Time” unit in Donbass

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Pete John on Twitter
March 21, 2017 01:00 UTC
“APU used shells with parachutes to illuminate the night shelling
of the village of #Donetsk – YouTube.”

Click for video in Russian (no subtitles).

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Ukrainian army’s shelling causes blackout in several DPR villages / DONi News / March 20, 2017 / The Ukrainian army opened fire at the southern region of the DPR yesterday evening, the residents of Sakhanka and Kominternovo villages remained without electricity, Sakhanka administration’s head Igor Podgorny said today. “Last night, at approximately 6 pm, as a result of shelling by the AFU, the power transmission line was damaged, the boiler room doesn’t work. Now the inhabitants of the villages of Sakhanka and partially Kominternovo remain without light, and there is no gas in Kominternovo too. There are no suffered among the civilian population,” said the head. According to Podgorny, in this connection, a letter has been sent to the JCCC to ask for the presence of the OSCE monitors in the Novoazovsky district to monitor the situation and the possibility of carrying out restoration work.

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DPR Command Names Officers of Ukrainian Armed Forces Involved in Bombardment of Donetsk, Yasinovataya and Gorlovka in March / Voenkor.info / Autotranslated by Quemado Institute / March 21, 2017 / The operational command of the DNR published information about Ukrainian commanders, who in March issued orders for shelling villages near Donetsk and Yasinovata, as well as the outskirts of Gorlovka. The materials were received today by the DAN agency. The dossier includes data on the commander of the 92nd Independent Mechanized Brigade of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, Colonel Viktor Nikoliuk, who, in a drunken state, on March 6 ordered the shooting of artillery from the villages of Luganskoye and Signalnoye to the south-west of Donetsk. Then about 700 houses in two villages were left without light, and three houses were also damaged. It is established that the fire was fired from Novomikhailovka village, controlled by Kiev, using the Grad GRRS, 152-mm Howitz-B howitzers and 122-mm SAU Gvozdika. In addition, information is provided on the commander of the 72nd separate mechanized brigade, Colonel Andrei Sokolov, who ordered orders from March 14 to March to shell out the peaceful population of Yasinovatoy and Zaitsevo settlement. In Yasinovatoy there was a hit in the high-rise building and damage to the transmission line feeding the Donetsk filter station. In Zaitsevo, under the fire of the APU, a civilian died, another one was wounded and was hospitalized. The fire was fired from the districts of Avdeevka and the village of Zhovank. The commanders noted that the actions of Ukrainian commanders can be regarded as propaganda of war, torture, planning, preparation, unleashing and waging aggressive war, violation of laws and customs of war, genocide and violence against the population in the area of ​​military operations, as well as the use of weapons of mass destruction.

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Ukrainian artillery shelled people in Donetsk, March 19, 2017

Click for video.
Published Mar 20, 2017
Village Donetsk-Severniy shelled by AFU (Armed Forces of Ukraine) again.

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Click to enlarge.

Ukrainian saboteurs made a breakthrough attempt in south of DPR / Essence of Time / March 20, 2017 / The Armed forces of Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) prevented a breakthrough attempt of the Ukrainian army’s sabotage-recon group in the area of Komintenovo. Combat continues, a source in the Donetsk People’s Republic People’s Militia (DPR PM) informed a Rossa Primavera News Agency reporter on March 20th. At 12.40 PM, 2 Ukrainian platoons attempted to breakthrough along the Mariupol direction, in the area of Kominternovo. The breakthrough was backed by the artillery and armoured fighting vehicles. The attack against the DPR PM position was repulsed, the Ukrainian military retreated to their initial positions. “As a result of the attack, the Ukrainian army lost 10 soldiers killed and another 5 wounded. One BMP-1 infantry fighting vehicle was destroyed,” the source informed. According to DPR PM Command, 3 DPR servicemen were wounded while repulsing the attack. At the moment, combat continues. Last night, the Ukrainian army’s shelling caused the interruption of electric power in the villages of Sakhanka and Kominternovo in the south of DPR. Moreover, the gas supply was lost in Kominternovo. —Source: Rossa Primavera News Agency

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Kiev redeploys NATO-equipped fighters to Donbass / DONi News / March 19, 2017 / The Kiev forces’ command has sent military wearing NATO-style uniform and armed with weapons used in the NATO countries to Svetlodarskoye, LPR, reported the official representative of the LPR People’s Militia Lieutenant-Colonel Andrei Marochko. “The AFU command continues to resort to the services of foreign mercenaries in the ‘ATO’ zone, disregarding subordinate personnel because of its low moral and psychological state,” he pointed out. “Thus, it was established that in the responsibility area of the 54th brigade, in the village of Svetlodarskoye, there arrived an 18-strong unit equipped with the NATO-style uniform and armed with sniper rifles BARRETT-M107A1,” said the defense official. Marochko added that the unit had arrived to carry out subversive and terrorist tasks.

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Poroshenko: “We’ve lost influence over Donbass due to the blockade” / Translated from RIA Novostie by J. Arnoldski for Fort Russ / March 20, 2017 / At a meeting of the Regional Security Council in Kiev, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko stated that Ukraine has completely lost influence over Donbass due to radicals’ recent blockade of the region. “As a result of the blockade, Ukraine lost its last sphere of influence on this territory,” Poroshenko asserted. The president remarked: “At the same time, this dealt a blow to domestic energy, metallurgy, and the budget.” Continuing, Poroshenko explained: “The organizers of the blockade tricked society insofar as this was not a blockade of separate districts of the Donetsk and Lugansk regions – what blockade can there be when there is a hole in the border, including one of hundreds of kilometers with the Russian Federation? In fact this turned out to be a special operation aimed . . . READ MORE>>

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Vekhovna Rada discusses blockade (–Nataliia Sharomova /Censor.net)

Ukraine’s economic growth indicators need revision in wake of Donbass blockade / TASS / March 21, 2017 / Members of the Verkhovna Rada national parliament representing the Samopomich party caucus said earlier they would not stop blockade of transport routes connecting Donbass with the rest of Ukraine. / KIEV / Ukraine’s economic growth indicators stand in need of a downward revision in the wake of the trade blockade of the self-proclaimed unrecognized Donetsk and Lugansk republics, Prime Minister Vladimir Groysman told ICTV channel on Tuesday. “If we forecasted a 3% growth, this meant rehabilitation of our economy was beginning and we would be able to reinvest the products (of growth) in people’s lives,” he said. “And now it appears we have to make downward revisions when the chances (for economic improvement – TASS) have just cropped up.” “I have a question in the light of it, namely, why certain irresponsible politicians are acting this way,” Groysman said. “They render to zero the efforts we put exactly into economic growth.” “As for the revision, we are to watch the situation with foreign currency revenues and with employments,” he said. Members of the Verkhovna Rada national parliament representing the Samopomich party caucus said earlier they would not stop blockade of transport routes connecting Donbass with the rest of Ukraine in spite of the Prime Minister’s efforts to prove that the blockade was economically irrational.

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Russia: ‘The time for sanctions is over’
European political delegation visits Crimea

Click for video.
Published on Mar 20, 2017
A delegation of European politicians attended a meeting with local government representatives in Simferopol on Monday, as part of a three-day visit to Crimea.

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Alexander Zakharchenko, Igor Plotnitsky (–UAWire)

[Enemy Report:] Separatist leaders attend ‘Donbas integration ceremony’ in the Crimea / UAWire / March 20, 2017 / In the annexed Crimea, a presentation regarding “the integration of the Donbas into the Russian Federation” was given at the first conference of the Russia-Donbas Integration Committee which was held on March 17th at the Livadia Palace in Yalta, as reported by Radio Liberty. The first meeting of the Committee was attended by Igor Carpenter[Plotnitsky -QI editor] and Alexander Zakharchenko, the leaders of the LPR (Luhansk People’s Republic) and DPR (Donetsk People’s Republic), respectively. They arrived in the Crimea for the celebration of the third anniversary of the annexation of the peninsula. The committee chairman is a Deputy of the State Duma of the Russian Federation and the deputy chairman is a member of the Russian community in the Crimea, Andrey Kozenko. In January, Zakharchenko and Plotnitsky came to the Crimea to celebrate the anniversary of the Pereyaslav Rada. Kozenko indicated that he had created a group within the State Duma to maintain “parliamentary contacts” with the LDPR (Luhansk and Donetsk People’s Republics). At the same time, the idea of the Russia-Donbas Integration Committee was allegedly born. During a meeting of the committee, Kozenko announced that he had prepared a bill that would abolish the need for labor permits for “citizens of the DPR and LPR.” The chairman of the Parliament of the annexed Crimea, Vladimir Konstantinov, proposed the Rossregion Project and within its limits, the full cooperation of all factions will become possible. Zakharchenko and Plotnitsky claimed they have nothing to do with Ukraine anymore, and the leading partner for the so-called republics is the Russian Federation, in which they hope to enter. “The last step was the ascension of enterprises from Ukrainian jurisdiction to ORDLO (separatist-held territories of Ukraine) and the payment of wages there.” The guilty parties are not the groups that nationalized the enterprises and introduced external management, making it impossible to supply raw materials and ship products to the government-controlled territory. But rather the Ukrainian government, who initiated the blockade until the return of these enterprises back under the control of the owners,” Radio Liberty writes. Plotnitsky stated that coal supplies are coming from Luhansk to the annexed Crimea. Zakharchenko reported that over the past year, the export of goods from the territory controlled by the DPR faction to Russia “grew by $34 million.” And generally speaking, the Donbas, according to him, has something to offer Russian consumers. According to Zakharchenko, as a result of the transport blockade by the Ukrainians, the enterprises in the uncontrolled territories of the Donbas are already switching over to Russian components and raw materials. On the morning of March 15th, President Petro Poroshenko, during the opening of the meeting of the NSDC (National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine), proposed to make a decision on a full stop of transport with the occupied territories. The NSDC decided to stop the cargo movement across the contact line. Poroshenko stressed that Ukraine will abolish the ban on the movement of cargo across the line of demarcation if enterprises in the occupied territories of the Donbas are returned to Ukrainian owners and a ceasefire regime will begin. The closing of the transport routes into the separatist-held territories of Ukraine does not impact humanitarian supplies. [Source: uawire.org/news/in-annexed-crimea-zakharchenko-and-plotnitsky-integrated-separatist-held-territories-of-ukraine-into-russia#]

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Sevastopol Is Not Ukraine / Slavyangrad.org / March 20, 2017 / Preamble: March 16 was the third anniversary of the reunification of Crimea with Russia. As the Ukraine continues to claim jurisdiction over the territory, and claims that the population has been forced into accepting Russian rule, we thought it would be instructive to see what was written about the Hero City of Sevastopol in 2009, by Mustafa Nayyem, one of the main proponents of Euromaidan, and now a People’s Deputy in the Supreme Rada in Kiev. / Original: Ukrainska Pravda’ / Translated by @TamrikoT / Edited (and pictures) by @GBabeuf / This is a very beautiful city, proud and genuine. There is little affectation here. Moreover—there’s an openness, that converts one from rudeness and bluntness into an admiring, sincere person. By the will of fate, of politicians, and of history, it is now a Ukrainian city. And yet. It’s a Ukrainian city, in which Ukrainians are called invaders. It’s a Ukrainian city, where if your business card isn’t in Russian as well as in Ukrainian and English, you’ll get a smirk…and your card returned. It’s a Ukrainian city, where people go to the cinema more readily when there’s a rough and clumsy Russian dubbing, on top of the already Ukrainian-dubbed film, added by local craftsmen. Because otherwise the little children wouldn’t understand. It’s a Ukrainian city, in which the Ukrainian flag is called a “dirty rag” while the Russian tricolour is proudly flown in windows. In this Ukrainian city one scarcely finds the Ukrainian coat of arms. It’s not even on the signs of many government institutions. In this Ukrainian city, the employees of the Ukrainian Navy do not understand why they . . . READ MORE>>

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Are the Russians of Novorossia the most betrayed people in modern times? / By Nicholas Nicholaides / Sott.net (from Katehon) / March 20, 2017 / With the possible exception of the Palestinian people, Russians are probably the most betrayed people in modern time. The “Russians” in a wider meaning are the people inhabiting Russia, Belarus, Novorossia, Malorossia, Transnistria, northern Kazakhstan and half of the Baltic region – this is the Russian World. They are artificially divided into Russians, Belorussians and something called “Ukrainians”, but they are all essentially Russians. A person from the Urals is not “Uralian” and a person from Kamchatka is not “Kamchatkian”, they are Russian. In the same way, a person from Belarus or from former Ukraine (except Galicia) is also Russian, whether they know it or not. This is a simple genetic and historical fact. During the Russian Empire (Tsarist times) and during the USSR (Soviet times), the people lived together in harmony, except for the westernmost parts of “Ukraine”, where the people are not really Russians. But all the way back, from the 1800’s and forward, this people has been betrayed by many of its leaders. Some Tsars were good, others were bad, and some were just incompetent. Then came the communists who started with great plans for the people but ended up betraying themselves (for reasons we will not explore here). Then came Yeltsin, who betrayed the people and country more than everyone else put together, so Russia became a third world nation, a colony of the West. And then came Putin. He slowly . . . READ MORE>>

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The Manifesto of Ukrainian Nationalism / By Anatoly Karlin / The Duran / March 20, 2017 / A Ukrainian nationalist movement which is politically increasingly in the ascendant has unveiled a manifesto which underscores its growing flight from reality. On March 16, representatives of the political party Svoboda, Right Sector, and the National Corpus (i.e. the Azov batallion’s political wing) gathered to sign a National Manifesto. The document affirms the ideological unity of the three main forces of Ukrainian nationalism, and conveniently summarizes its core vision. Considering the Poroshenko’s governments ever greater submissiveness before Ukrainian nationalist forces, and the specter of them assuming an even more central role in the regime that might well soon replace his, it is now all the more vital to understand their vision for Ukraine. Below, I provide a translation of this document, stressing readability over word-for-word accuracy. *** We, Ukrainian nationalists, understanding the catastrophic state of our country and with the goal of acquiring and developing a great national state, capable of securing the prosperous existence of Ukrainians and a future for Ukrainian children, are uniting our efforts on the basis of fundamental, unambiguous, and unchanging principles and goals, and thereby offer a concrete plan of action that we can embark upon straight away for the achievement of these goals. 1. Define as a priority of state policy the realization of Ukraine’s national interests. 2. New vector of Ukrainian geopolitics – orientation not to the West or the East, but the creation of a new European unity – that of the Balto-Black Sea Union. 3. Recognize the Russian Federation as an aggressor state… break diplomatic relations, blockade the occupied territories, end Russian business activities in Ukraine, sanction Russian capital, goods, and services. 4. Recognize [the LDNR] as occupied territories and develop a real plan to liberate Crimea and Donbass. Immediately embark upon economic, informational, and reconaissance-sabotage actions in furtherance of these goals. 5. Return the right to recreate a nuclear weapons capability as a foundation of national security in light of the violation of the Budapest Memorandum. 6. Create a high-tech professional contract army, and a reserve army, based on the . . . READ MORE>>

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For complete history of News from Novorossiya, see our dedicated website: Novorossiya Daily Sun

***

Novorossiya Photo & Video Gallery:

Donbass pays the last tribute to “Givi” – DONi Press Video Report
Published on Feb 10, 2017
slavfeb10-17s
Click for video.

Luhansk Republic on Twitter
February 11, 2017 01:00 UTC
slavfeb10-17p
“Yes, Kiev will lose. 55,000 turned out for Givi’s funeral.
#Donbass is tighter then ever. We will fight to last bullet, last house.”

slavfeb10-17j

slavfeb8-17y

Givi Tribute – Donetsk good times – RIP
slavfeb8-17u
Click for video.
WesternTruthTV – February 8, 2017

In Memory of Commander Givi
slavfeb8-17n
Click for VIDEO
Soldatiy Svobodiy – May 7, 2015

slavfeb8-17qGIVI – Symbol of Donbass – RIP

slavfeb8-17p

RIP – Valeriy Bolotov, the founder of Lugansk People’s Republic
DONi News – January 28, 2017
slavjan28-17s
Click for video.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Arseny Pavlov “Motorola” Funeral Service in Donetsk
By Alexancer Kots
slavoct25-16q
Click for VIDEO

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Click for VIDEO.

Click for VIDEO.

Motorola won even in death (VIDEO)

 

slavoct19-16tDrone Video: Massive Motorola’s funeral march in Donetsk City, 19.10.2016

slavoct19-16s

Motorola (right) with DPR Commander Givi

Arseny Pavlov Motorola (right) with DPR Commander Givi

 

Storm Bringer on Twitter
September 3, 2016 15:00 UTC
slavsep3-16z
“BREAKING: Today Givi has been assigned the rank of a colonel.
Congratulations.”

Elena Plotnikova on Twitter
September 3, 2016 17:30 UTC
slavsep3-16w
“Donetsk: Even during the war it is the most civilized city in Ukraine.
Clean, decent, beautiful.”

HAPPY BIRTHDAY GIVI!
slavjul19-16w
Tweeted by Enrico Ivanov

The painting by German artist Amely Rose, describing
the tragedy of flight MH17 July 17, 2014 at Donetsk.
slavjul17-16z
(Tweeted by Marizar)

 

slavmar15w

John Delacour on Twitter
slavjan11h
School dinner in Gorlovka, Donetsk People’s Republic

Evening in Donetsk – Christmas Time
slavjan6x
Posted on Twitter by Hermius

Near Donetsk (–@zxzdzcv)
slavjan2w

NOVOROSSIYA FOREVER
In memory of their sacrifice.
RIP MOZGOVOY DREMOV ISHCHENKO BEDNOV
slavdec14p

slavdec13m

Donetsk
slavdec13t

NAF Field Commander Pavel Dremov
slavdec12t
Assassinated today, December 12, 2015

Winter has arrived in Donetsk.
slavdec3z

Map of Black Sea (Click to enlarge.)
slavnov26u
(–mapsofdallas.blogspot.com)

Detail showing South Ossetia
slavnov26t

Donetsk International Festival
“World Ballet Stars”

slavnov22m

Friday, November 13, 2015

*APTOPIX France Paris Attacks
Tragedy in Paris, November 13, 2015, 130 dead.
Tragedies in Donbass, 2014-2015, thousands dead.

Lenin Square, Donetsk, October 2014
Eccentric Bliss
slavoct22m

 

Donetsk City at Night
New Russia Press
slavoct17w

Crimean Bridge Promo Video
The 19 kilometer bridge connecting Russia and Crimea is scheduled to open in December 2018.
For Fort Russ video click here.
(Photo –russia-ic.com)

Linguistic Map of Ukraine
Red = Ukrainian, Blue = Russian

Beautiful Donetsk

Donetsk

My home city of Donetsk

For earlier News from Novorossiya click here: Novorossiya Daily Sun

Zakharchenko, Debaltsevo, February 2015

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