The EU is ready to support Ukrainian reforms by providing financial, advisory and humanitarian aid. Chevron will not participate in the production of shale gas in Ukraine. UkrEnergo introduces emergency blackouts. The EU is ready to apply additional strict sanctions against the Crimea. The UN notes the deterioration of the human rights situation in the Donbass and the Crimea.
Events In Ukraine
● Ukraine and the EU held first meeting of the Association Council in accordance with the terms of the agreement. They discussed the issues of implementation of the provisions of the agreement in the context of active humanitarian, financial and advisory support of the EU. Following the meeting, the Prime Minister Yatsenyuk said that the national reform strategy will be presented at the international conference of donor countries in early 2015.
● Administration of the President of Ukraine has officially confirmed that Chevron company cancelled its participation in the shale gas development in Western Ukraine.
● First National TV Channel refused to renew the contract with the TV show “Shuster Live”.
● National Bank lowered the official hryvnia (UAH) exchange rate again, which reached another historic low: 15,76 UAH / $ (0.05 UAH), 19.62 UAH / € (+0,09 UAH) 2.77 UAH/10 Russian Rubles (- 0.10 UAH).
● “Ukrenergo” announced introduction of emergency outages from December 15 due to insufficient stocks of coal at thermal power plants, low water levels in reservoirs, and an on-going repairs of several nuclear generation units. At the same time, the supply of electricity to the Crimea continues, although sales are going to be carried out with the help of auctions under the guarantee of payment by Ukrainian state-owned banks. Delivery of electricity to the occupied territories of Donbass is carried out without any restrictions.
War in Ukraine
● Ukrainian volunteers have launched a site, which accumulates information about terrorist’s activities and their personal data.
● The population of the occupied territories of Donbass is on the verge of hunger riots because of the non-opaque distribution of “humanitarian aid” from Russia by terrorist “authorities”. In some areas, a rise of the partisan movement has been noted.
● Russian troops have regrouped and got strengthened with armor and artillery units. They are actively perfoming reconnaissance using drones. Ukrainian army positions were shelled seven times in Stanitsa Luhans’ka, near Debaltseve, Telmanovo and Mariupil. There were no casualties among Ukrainian soldiers or civilians.
Observers have noted the difficulties in formation of the “Army of Novorossia” under Russian command due to mass desertion and looting by local militants. Shootouts between gangs of deserters occure from time to time, and Russian troops came under such “friendly fire”.
● A deputy of the Verkhovna Rada, Ukrainian military pilot Nadiya Savchenko, who was captured by militants in Luhans’k region and kept captive in Russia, started her hunger stike in Moscow jail.
Ukraine and the World
● The NATO Secretary General Mr. Stoltenberg said some alliance members are having talks about increasing the military aid to Ukraine outside of the alliance framework on their own initiative.
● The report on the situation in Ukraine by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights emphasizes that the situation with civilians in eastern Ukraine is getting worse as winter approaches and warfare continues. After the announcement of the latest truce, a large number of hostages is still held by terrorists. The number of temporary migrants and refugees has exceeded 1 million people. The government should be responsible for protecting the rights of all citizens, including those who live in the territories not controlled by the state.
● A resolution to tighten restrictions on the relations between European companies and the Crimean counterparts in investment, trade and services was adopted at the meeting of EU Ministers of Foreign Affairs. Sanctions will be introduced after consultations at lower levels and will be officially announed on December 18th.
● Gazprombank put forward a claim for 5.7 billion m3 of natural gas, which was stored in Ukrainian underground gas facilities and was given as a collateral by Ostchem company owned by Ukrainian oligarch Firtash.
● Russian stock indices and currency exchange rate fell by more than 10%. Russia’s central bank raised interest rates to 17%, but experts predict heavy consequences for the economy from this action.
● According to experts, humanitarian convoys sent by Fund Akhmetov to the occupied territories of Donbass are simply a commercial transportation enterprise. Humanitarian aid should be brougt to civilians under the supervision of the International Red Cross or similar organization. In addition, convoys return with an unknown cargo due to the lack of inspection on departure. At the same, time militants don’t allow to deliver humanitarian aid of Ukrainian government and international organizations to the occupied territory.
Digests & Analytics Ukraine for Information Resistance