G20 leaders are united in their position towards Russian aggression in Ukraine. Probability of a new offensive by Russian troops and illegal military units in Donbass is quite high. Coalition talks in Ukrainian parliament are far from the finish line.
● Founding congress of the ‘’Association of Ukrainian Volunteers’’, uniting 26 organizations, took place in Kyiv. The main objectives of the Association are: support of Ukrainian Armed Forces reform, reinforcement of defense capabilities, support of army and volunteer military units.
● Ukrainian printed media market is shrinking due to the crisis and weakened demand. Sanoma company is going to close such journals as ’’National Geographic’’, “Esquire’’, “Men’s Health‘’, ‘’Harpers Bazaar’’ and is willing to sell ’’Cosmopolitan Ukraine’’.
War in Ukraine
● NSDC ascertains preparation of Russian troops and DPR/LPR illegal military units to a large-scale offensive. Intensity of shellfire of Ukrainian army positions by militants have slightly decreased due to the weather conditions, but they still take place all over the front line. Three Ukrainian military were killed while resisting an attack on Stanitsa Luhanskaya. In an interview to the German newspaper ‘’Bild’’, President Poroshenko declared that Ukraine is not looking for war with Russia, but is ready for the worst case scenario and army is ready much better than five months ago.
● According to information from the Prisoners of War Exchange Center, DPR and LPR militants still keep 703 Ukrainian military and civilians as prisoners of war.
● Authorities of the terrorist Donetsk republic announced a creation of a bank based on the existing branch network of one of Ukrainian banks. Ukrainian authorities warned about illegality of such establishment and risks associated with putting money in it.
● Another ’’humanitarian convoy’’ invaded Ukraine from Russia. As noted by sources from Luhans’k, it brought ammunition and fuel for militants and Russian army.
● G20 summit, which was dedicated to economics, global warming, fight with Ebola epidemic and situation in Ukraine, finished without president Putin, who left the meeting earlier. In a joint statement, Leaders of USA, Japan and Australia expressed protest against Russian violation of Ukrainian sovereignty and declared their determination to prosecute terrorists responsible for MH17 flight catastrophe. Question of coordinated response to Russian policy towards Ukraine has been discussed during the meeting of President Obama with EU leaders. UK Prime Minister Cameron said that the West is ready to follow tough policy towards Russia during many years in order to avoid the frozen conflict on the European continent. German Chancellor Merkel voiced in favor of continuing dialogue with Russian President Putin in order to resolve Ukrainian crisis.
● Minister of Economics and President of Germany both said that tightening of sanctions against Russia will not help to stop the war in Donbass and that other ways should be considered for the deescalation of the conflict.
● Former advisor for the US president Carter and influential political scientist Zbigniew Brzezinski said that Russian aim is the division of Europe, the breakup of European-American union, a paralysis of the NATO and the EU under the threat of a nuclear strike.
● Agreement on continuous collaboration of Foreign Affairs Ministers was reached during the meeting of Vyshegrad Group Leaders (Hungary, Poland, Czech Republic and Slovakia) with President Poroshenko.
● Representative of ‘’Poroshenko Block’’ Tomenko said that the political party he represents considers a possibility of forming a technocratic government, or even of early parliamentary elections in case consensus about the new Government is not reached.
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