Country leaders congratulated Ukrainians with the upcoming New Year. The public considers actions of Ukrainian authorities during the “ceasefire” as a behind-the-scene deal with the terrorists.
Key Events In Ukraine
● The President, the Prime Minister and the Speaker of the Parliament congratulated Ukrainians with the upcoming New Year.
● President Poroshenko signed the State Budget of Ukraine for 2015 and almost all of the laws adopted by the Verkhovna Rada during the last session.
● President Poroshenko signed a decree about the delegation, which will participate in the negotiations with Russia.
● Energy Minister Demchishin could not explain the motives for the appointments on his team.
● The wholesale price of electricity will be increased in Ukraine due to increase in import, inflation and devaluation of the hryvnia (UAH). “Naftogaz” prepaid “Gazprom” for the 1 billion cubic meters of gas.
● Ukraine’s Foreign Ministry explained that it is not necessary to exchange international passports for the biometric ones until current are valid. Visa-free regime will come into effect after the removal of Ukraine from the list of countries requiring visas by the European Commission and the Council of Europe.
● In the absence of trading on the interbank exchange hryvnia had the following FX rate at the end of the year: 15.77 UAH / USD, 19.23 UAH / EUR, 3,03 UAH / 10 RUR.
War in Ukraine
● Ukrainian troops were under attack and fire 11 times during the day. Donets’k airport, Peski and Granitne were especially targeted by militants. Almost all checkpoints around Mariupil were closed for transit.
● Russian troops and mercenaries build up and regroup reserves near Donets’k, Debaltseve, Stakhanov, Severodonets’k and Pervomays’k. Terrorist commanders are experiencing problems with the mobilization of the local population into combat units due to the big losses in combat and non-payment of wages.
● Meeting of the officers from the General Army Staff of Ukraine and Russia took place in Luhansk in the presence of a representative of the OSCE. There were no comments on it results.
● OSCE again recorded the removal of coal from the Ukrainian territory. More than 800 people in the military uniform enter Ukraine just through one checkpoint per week.
● On the New Year eve Lugansk remained without electricity with the air temperature of -16° C. Some boilers and medical centers were connected using temporary connections. There were problems with mobile networks.
Ukraine and the World
● US citizens and companies, which had business in the Crimea, should cease cooperation with Crimean partners and get rid of the property on the territory of Crimea.
● Secretary General of the Council of Europe Mr. Jagland said that Ukraine should develop a strong state based on the rule of law and called on the country to strengthen its position in its relations with Russia.
● The Russian “Aeroflot” air carrier has created a new lowcoster “Pobeda” instead of “Dobrolet” which came under Western sanctions.
● Venezuela’s economy falls into the recession with inflation rate reaching 63% due to the cheap oil flooding the market
● International Federation of Journalists reported that 8 journalists were killed in Ukraine in 2014 – the same number as in Iraq during the same period.
● The Russian branch of the International Red Cross does not consider Russian “convoys” as invasion of Ukraine.
● Ukrainian military personnel are unhappy with militant inspections and taking their arms away while carrying out the rotation of troops at the Donetsk International Airport during the “truce”. They fear that the airport will soon have no means for defense. Meeting of the representatives of the General Army Staff of Russia and Ukraine in Lugansk indicates continuation of behind-the-scene negotiations regarding the surrender of Ukrainian territory.
● According to international media reports, a difficult year is awaiting for Russian President Putin, up to his physical disposal by colleagues.
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