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July 11-17, 2016

Situation in Eastern Ukraine

On July 11, terrorists greatly intensified shelling along the demarcation line, reported the ATO press centre. Terrorists opened fire 94 times at the ATO forces positions. Most attacks (48) were registered in Donetsk area. The enemy used the forbidden by Minsk II 152-mm artillery at the fortifications in Novhorodske, and 122-mm artillery in Mykolayivka Druha. The occupants used 120-mm mortars for shelling the ATO positions in Mayorske, Pisky, Avdiyivka, Novhorodske and Troyitske.

In Mariupol direction the enemy violated the ceasefire 29 times. In particular, Ukrainian forces bases in Talakivtka, Vodiane, Novohryhorivka and Maryinka were shelled with 120-mm mortars. In Donetsk region Russian occupants shelled with grenade launchers, armoured vehicles, heavy machine guns and small arms.

During the combat clash in Troyitske ATO fighters captured three Russian mercenaries, reported ATO press centre.

On July 12, terrorists opened fire 56 times at the ATO forces units, reported ATO press centre. Specifically, terrorists violated truce in Donetsk direction (23 times), in Mariupol direction 25 times and 8 times in Luhansk areas.

As a result of terrorist shelling of residential areas in Kurdiumivka (near Toretsk, Donetsk region) there were destroyed several houses, announced the head of the National Police in Donetsk region Vyacheslav Abroskin.

On July 13 a new dividing line was set in Donbas, told the former head of the Foreign Intelligence Service of Ukraine Mykola Malomuzh. According to Malomuzh, apart from the three hottest points in Avdiyivka, Mariupol direction and Pisky, there are other twelve potentially dangerous points, including Stanytsia-Luhanska and the whole Luhansk direction.

The SBU together with the police detained two DNR terrorists, reported the SBU. In Druzhkivka the police detained a local resident, who in April-July, 2014, was a member of DNR. He served at one of the terrorist roadblocks.

In Luhansk area Ukraine will set a tower for broadcasting Ukrainian media in controlled and uncontrolled areas of the region, reported the head of Luhansk military and civil administration Yuriy Harbuz.

Politics and Economy

The Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine issued a decree on the extension of the ban on Russian import to Ukraine with a list of goods approved by the government. This is stated in the resolution of the Cabinet of Ministers of July 6, 2016 no.417.

Finance Minister of Ukraine Oleksandr Danyluk believes that the failure to approve by the Parliament a number of laws required for cooperation with the IMF should not affect the next tranche from the IMF in July.

72 rail cars with destination point Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan were detained on the Russian border; 13 of these cars were sent via the changed route, the other 59 remain in the Ukrainian-Russian border.

The Supreme Economic Court of Ukraine dismissed the appeal of the Russian “Gazprom” on refusal of lower courts to consider the claim to impose a fine in the amount of USD 85.9 billion.

US Senators before summer vacation unanimously voted for the appointment of Marie Jovanovich as a new US Ambassador to Ukraine, reported former US Ambassador to Ukraine Jeffrey Pyatt.

The Parliament adopted a law on domestic biometric passports. 226 MPs supported this draft law. The document, among other things, is expected to introduce a passport for citizens aged fourteen and legalize internal biometric passport.

World News

Damage to the economy of Crimea due to energy blockade increased to RUR 2.5 billion, reported “the prosecutor” of Crimea Natalia Poklonskaya, reports UNN citing TASS.

The process of exit of Great Britain from the European Union could be delayed for a period of six years due to ratification by all 27 national parliaments, announced Minister of Foreign Affairs of the UK Philip Hammond.

On July 14, a terrorist attack was carried out in Nice, reported the Department of Alpes-Maritimes prefecture. According to it, there are many injured. TV channel BFM TV reported of “at least five dozen dead and many wounded.” It is reported that unknown persons in a van (other sources – on the truck) crashed into a crowd of people admiring the fireworks in the famous Promenade des Anglais during the National holiday.

Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said about the coup attempt in Turkey, reported UNN with reference to Reuters. According to him, a group of soldiers attempted to carry out a force coup. He also said that at present the security forces are doing their best to neutralize the situation. At the same time, a representative of the National Intelligence Organization (MIT) Nuh Yilmaz said on preventing the coup attempt in the country.

Activists of “Bridge Ukraine-EU” and “Civic Guard” celebrated European Mobility Week by a 35 km long bicycle race and dedicated it to people with disabilities

European Mobility Week is being celebrated in Ukraine on September 16-22. This holiday of the rational development of transport is marked in more than 5 thousand cities in Europe. The basic idea is to reduce the use of private cars, with preference to public transport and bicycles.

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Activists of the NGO “Bridge Ukraine-EU” and PU “Civic Guard” decided to join this initiative. 15 girls rode bikes (many of them for the first time in their life) to show that the European approach to travel by bicycle in a metropolis is quite acceptable for the capital of Ukraine. Overall they covered more than 35 kilometres.

“By promoting the European way of life, we are taking care of the future of our country, – says head of NGO “Bridge Ukraine-EU” Natalia Sevidova – that’s why we, activists, have to prove that Ukraine is Europe, and Kyiv is a European city”.

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Started was in Rusanovka area. But first was a small briefing of the bike instructor on the basics of comfortable and safe riding. Moving toward relaxation zone on Trukhanov island, the girls checked the reaction of Kyiv drivers on cyclists. Compared to previous years, drivers have become more tolerant to other road users, but the behaviour of most of them is still imperfect. Lack of bicycle paths is a separate issue for criticizing, but pleasant exception exist (e.g. a bicycle path in Troeshchyna area).

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Then, the cyclist rode to the city centre to check accessibility of public place for people with disabilities in the framework of the joint project of NGO “Bridge Ukraine-EU,” PU “Civic Guard” and PA “Mother’s Heart.” Natalia Sevidova says that it is necessary to expand the format of the European Mobility Week and draw particular attention to the needs of people in wheelchairs.

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Then, there were several checks of ramps in front of public authorities’ offices and the test proved that people in wheelchairs are unable to use such ramps without someone’s help.

Vitaliy Klychko, city mayor, recently ordered to improve the situation with ramps. “Public has to control this process,” says Svitlana Yanchuk, head of Kyiv city PU “Civic Guard.”

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This year NGO “Bridge Ukraine-EU,” PU “Civic Guard” have joined the European Mobility Week for the first time, – says Natalia Sevidova. – We combined cycle race with check of accessibility of public places as part of project “Feel Yourself.” Next year we will expand the geography of this event. For example, we will organise a cycle fest in Kirovohrad. In general, the bike is a good ecological and healthy alternative to the car. I tested it myself and I invite you to check it out.”

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Monitoring August 03–09

Situation in Eastern Ukraine

Special Forces Volunteer Battalion of the National Guard “Donbas” asked to return to its positions in the village Shyrokyne, near Mariupol, reads the statement of the battalion addressing the President Poroshenko and Commander Sector “M” General Fedorov.

President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko said that to date 9,000 Russian soldiers stay in Donbas. He voiced this information in an interview with the Austrian newspaper “Kurier.”

SMM OSCE observers recorded the presence of Russian troops in storages allotted for heavy weapons which belong to DNR militants. “The armed man who guarded one of the storage sites of DNR heavy weapons, says he and others present at the location, represent 16 Airborne brigade from Orenburg, Russian Federation,” – the report says.

Law enforcement authorities say about the documentary evidence of the presence of 3,500 Russian soldiers in Ilovaisk operation, according to Chief Military Prosecutor Anatoliy Matios and Head of the Central Investigation Department of SBU Hryhoriy Ostafiychuk.

Part of Luhansk region remained without electricity because of the shelling of Shchastya, resulting in a broken power line, reported Press Secretary of the Crisis Staff, DTEK Anton Kovalishyn.

OSCE has recorded 21 cars with “cargo 200” at the Russian-Ukrainian border during this year. But observers cannot say exactly what was inside, stated head of the OSCE mission in Rostov region Paul Picard, RIA Novosti reported.

Three soldiers were released from captivity, reported Svyatoslav Tseholko, Spokesman of the President of Ukraine. Later, Yuri Tandit, Advisor to the Head of the SBU, added information on the released military: Oleksandr Mashynkin – 80 Bragade, Yuriy Tserelenko – 25 battalion “Kyiv Rus” and Stanislav Paplinskyi – 81 Brigade.

Militants used Grads banned by Minsk agreements. The shelling took place at night in the village Troyitske, Popasna district, reported the head of Luhansk regional military-civilian administration Heorgiy Tuka. As a result, two houses in Chervona Street were completely destroyed. No information about victims was received.

57 unidentified soldiers were buried in Zaporizhya who defended Ukraine in eastern regions. The military were killed last year during the fighting near Ilovaisk and Debaltseve.

SMM OSCE in Ukraine recorded 4 cases when eight people reported about their belonging to the Russian armed forces, SMM OSCE Spokesman Michael Bociurkiw told on Friday, Interfax-Ukraine.

On August 8, militants shelled Dzerzhinsk and injured three civilians. The city was partially deprived of electricity supply including three mines where 216 miners were left underground, reported head the Regional Department, MIA Vyacheslav Abroskin.

OSCE observers recorded the results of the terrorist attacks at Novotoshkivske using heavy weapons and reported about the shelling to the SMM OSCE observers.

Politics and Economics

Pechersk District Court arrested two houses of Oleksiy Azarov in Olbiya, Italy and a bank account of the company “Agosto 2012 srl,” reads the decision of the court of July 28, “Nashi Hroshi.” The son of the escaped ex-Prime Minister Mykola Azarov is charged with illicit enrichment.

Committee to Save Ukraine decided to nominate former MP of the Verkhovna Rada Volodymyr Oliynyk for the post of the President, announced the former Ukrainian Prime Minister Mykola Azarov at a press conference in Moscow, the TASS.

The Central Election Commission has published the election results in the Constituency 205 (Chernihiv) and recognized the candidate from the party “Bloc of Petro Poroshenko” “Solidarity” Serhiy Berezenko as the winner. Berezenko is a Head of the State Administration, born in 1984, with higher education and residing in Kyiv. 35.9% of voters (17,782 votes) supported him.

The Ministry of Justice has prepared the fourth lawsuit to the European Court of Human Rights against Russia on human rights violations, including the Crimean Tatars in Crimea, said Justice Minister Pavlo Petrenko during a round table on the rights of citizens in annexed Crimea, reported “Ukrainian News.”

The daughter of the killed in February 2015 Russian opposition leader Boris Nemtsov said that she will donate 700,000 euros to support charitable projects in Ukraine.

Former Minister of Agrarian Policy, Igor Shvaika said that money to buy Harley-Davidson motorcycle was presented him by a former MP, his party fellow Oleksander Myrnyi. He said this at a press conference on Wednesday, reports Ukrinform. However Shvaika said that he was not served neither a notification on suspicions, nor a subpoena; his motorcycle was not arrested and is parked in front of the Ukrinform. He said that he was aware that on June 10, indeed, there was opened a criminal proceeding for allegedly receiving a bribe.

The second tranche of the IMF amounting USD 1.7 billion has already started to flow to the accounts of the National Bank of Ukraine, said Deputy Finance Minister Artem Shevalov.

General Prosecutor’s Office published a subpoena on former President Viktor Yanukovych in the Official Journal of the central executive authorities “Governmental Courier”. The corresponding notice was published in the issue dated August 6, according to “Ukrainian News.” It is indicated that Yanukovych is obliged to come to the Prosecutor General on August 11, at 11:00am, for the investigation and proceedings in the criminal proceedings.

Serhiy Stepaniuk, Head of Dzerzhinsk District Council of Krivyi Rih, who was arrested on May 18 on suspicion of corruption, returned to his workplace on August 5. This information was confirmed by representatives of the regional council.

President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko signed a law on local elections adopted by the Parliament on July 14, reported the first deputy head of the Presidential Administration Vitaliy Kovalchuk at a briefing on Thursday, Interfax-Ukraine.

More than 40 tonnes of illegally mined coal was seized in Maryinskyi district, Donetsk region as a result of GPU and SBU raid to identify places of illegal coal mining, press service of the Donetsk Prosecutor.

In July, Ukraine imported coal worth over USD117 million, while export was USD4 million, State Fiscal Service reports. According to official data, the main exporter of coal in Ukraine in July was Russia, Ukraine’s import from this country was nearly USD54 million.

President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko vetoed the law “On the Internal Affairs” adopted by the Verkhovna Rada on July 2. “This decision President approved based on the results of the meeting with the participation of Prime Minister Arseniy Yatseniuk, Secretary of the National Defence and Security Council Oleksander Turchinov and Interior Minister Arsen Avakov,” – says the statement.

International Level

Sources of the “European Pravda” indicate that the Foreign Ministry submitted a filing to SBU on the declaration of the Georgian opposition politician, leader of “Democratic Movement” Nino Burjanadze persona non grata because of her public statements in support of the annexation of Crimea.

On August 10, Ukrainian delegation leaves for the Netherlands to participate in the technical reconstruction of the Malaysian “Boeing” crash, which occurred in July last year, reported Deputy Prime Minister Hennadiy Zubko, “Interfax-Ukraine”

The report of the international commission that investigates the downed Malaysian “Boeing”, is technical and does not give answers, who downed the plane, said the Prosecutor General of the Netherlands.

Investigation of the accident with Boeing-777 flight MN17 “was not independent, comprehensive and truly international,” stated RF Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in an interview with Singapore TV Channel News Asia, TASS.

Russian TV host Ernest Matskyavichyus advised young journalists in the present circumstances of the “Cold War” to refuse from international journalistic standards. He said this during the media camp “Territory of meanings on Klyazma” reports “Kommersant.” According to Matskyavichyus, before he followed international standards of journalism, but with the beginning of a “new Cold War” he uses them no more.

Vladimir Putin and Francois Hollande agreed to terminate the contract for the construction and delivery of two “Mistral.” They reached such agreement during a telephone conversation, press service of the Kremlin reports.

Japan is preparing a resolution on total rejection of the world of nuclear weapons for the consideration at the UN General Assembly, announced Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, speaking at events about the nuclear bombing of Hiroshima, “Interfax.”

US Forbes publishing house disentitled UMH Group of Serhiy Kurchenko to use its brand. This information was voiced by Mia Carbonell, Senior Vice President of Corporate Communications of Forbes Media.

The UN mission in Mali reported about the death of five employees, four of whom are foreigners. According to the report, the victims were, in particular, two Ukrainians, writes Deutsche Welle referring to agency AFP. “In an attack by militants on a hotel in Mali there were killed five employees of the mission, including four foreigners. Among the dead – two citizens of Ukraine and citizens of Nepal and South Africa,” – the statement said. There was also killed a local driver who worked for the mission.”

Monitoring JULY 27 – AUGUST 02

Situation in Eastern Ukraine

SMM OSCE in Ukraine confirmed the information that on July 26 its observers were shelled near Shchastya, Luhansk region.

The situation in eastern Ukraine escalated: on July 26, militants carried out 86 attacks on the positions of Ukrainian troops and peaceful settlements. Most of them took place in the evening, the Staff ATO press centre informs.

As a result of shooting in Shyrokyne, OSCE Special patrol leader was injured by a fragment of concrete, after that the observers left the village. The case was included in the SMM OSCE report, released on Monday.

Ukrainian troops will stay in the area of Shyrokyne near Mariupol until the signing and implementation of the agreement on the establishment of a buffer zone in the area. Andriy Lysenko, Spokesman of the Presidential Administration on ATO informed about that during a traditional briefing on Tuesday, answering journalists’ questions.

The Ministry of Defence said that 2.3 thousand soldiers have been killed during the fighting in Donetsk and Luhansk regions, the Department head of civil-military cooperation of the Armed Forces Oleksiy Nozdrachov says.

On July 30, militants shelled Dzerzhinsk, reported Donetsk region police head Vladyslav Abroskin. “As a result of direct hits in private households two men have been killed and a woman was injured,”- said Abroskin.

Militants in Donbas increased intensity of attacks, as well as the number of armoured vehicles and artillery in the first line.

According to Dmytro Tymchuk of “Information resistance,” militants massively use 120-mm mortars, 122-mm and 152-mm artillery and armoured vehicles along the whole boundary line.

British edition The Times and American Newsweek reported, citing data from Ukrainian Security Service, that the insurgents in Donbas developed a radioactive “dirty bomb” using Russian nuclear scientists.

According to the report, Russian experts remove radioactive industrial waste from the bunker on the territory of Donetsk State Chemical Plant and send it to the military base of militants, where it can be combined with explosives. Media data are reportedly based on “broken” emails between militants and the interception of radio communications.

Despite the fact that militants significantly reduced military provocations in Luhansk, Artemivsk and Mariupol directions at the end of the week, active military confrontation near Donetsk continues, ATO press centre informs.

Politics and Economics

President Poroshenko says that it doesn’t go about establishing a “buffer zone” near Mariupol and encourages its residents not to hear alarmist. The President stated this on Monday during a conversation with “volunteer troops” in Defence Ministry.

Additional import duty, introduced in February 2015 to stabilize the balance of payments of Ukraine, will be cancelled from January 1, 2016, reported Deputy Finance Minister Olena Makeieva, “UNIAN.”

Former Environment Minister Ihor Shevchenko does not work in a team of Mikheil Saakashvili, commented on the fact Advisor to the Head of Odesa Regional State Administration Oleksander Borovyk.

Central Election Commission processed 100% of protocols of the by-elections to the Verkhovna Rada in Constituency 205 in Chernihiv. According to the published results on the site of the CEC, the winner is candidate from the Petro Poroshenko Bloc, Head of the State Administration Affairs Serhiy Berezenko with 35.9% of votes. A representative of the group “Privat,” member of the Party “UKROP” Hennadiy Korban was the second with 14.76% of votes.

By resolution №473, National Bank has simplified the procedure of foreign exchange transactions for banks. In order to clarify the order of displaying operations on purchase and sale of foreign exchange and precious metals in the system of confirmation of agreements in the interbank foreign exchange market, as well as to facilitate the registration of these operations, the board of the regulator adopted a resolution №473 as of July 24, 2015 “On Amendments to Some Regulations of the National Bank of Ukraine.”

Security Service forbade entry for some French MPs into the territory of Ukraine who, without the consent of the Ukrainian authorities, visited the territory of Crimea annexed by Russia, reported the agency “Interfax-Ukraine”.

International creditors agreed to write off a small portion of Ukraine’s debt, writes the Russian newspaper RBC with reference to The Wall Street Journal. According to the newspaper, the talks between Kyiv and investors who own its debt became “warmer.” Two sources close to negotiations told WSJ on debt relief. This information also confirmed the source in Reuters. It is a duty before the American Franklin Templeton fund, which recently flatly refused to write off. The source in Reuters reported this week that the organization offered the Ukrainian authorities to cancel 5% of its debt.

International Arena

Security Service of Ukraine decided to ban entry for French actor Gerard Depardieu with Russian citizenship into Ukraine for 5 years, reported the SBU spokeswoman Olena Hitlyanska.

The draft resolution to the UN Security Council will be submitted together with the Charter of the International Tribunal to investigate the downed Boeing MH17. According to it, the punishment will suffer even those who instigated the crime. The draft charter was at the disposal of the newspaper Kommersant. As the newspaper writes, it states that the jurisdiction of the Tribunal extends to war crimes, “crimes against the security of civil aviation” and “crimes recorded in the Criminal Code of Ukraine.”

Montenegro, Albania, Iceland, Norway, Liechtenstein and Ukraine joined the EU economic sanctions against Russia, extended until January 31, 2016, stated the EU Council. The EU noted that they take into account the decision of these countries and welcomes it.

United States expanded the list of sanctions against Russia and allies of Yanukovych. The USA extended restrictive measures on 11 Russian and 15 Ukrainian citizens and companies, states the message on the website of the US Treasury. In particular, blacklist was enlarged with individuals Andriy Klyuyev, Serhiy Kurchenko, Eduard Stavytskyi, Oleksander Yanukovych, son of ex-President of Ukraine Viktor Yanukovych, and Roman Rotenberg, son of Russian oligarch Arkadiy Rotenberg and top managers of Russian military concern “Kalashnikov.” The sanction list also includes the ports of Yevpatoria, Feodosia, Kerch, Sevastopol, Yalta and Kerch ferry.

NATO has counted 250 Russian military aircraft interceptions in the last six months, reported the Financial Times. According to the representatives of the Alliance, this is the largest number for the same period after the “Cold War.” Almost half of these interceptions – 120 – were made by Baltic air police mission to NATO.

Latvia recorded the ships belonging to the Navy of Russia in the exclusive economic zone of the country, near the state border, the Latvian Defence Ministry reported on its Twitter.

Monitoring July 20 – 26

Situation in Eastern Ukraine

On July 19, situation in Eastern Ukraine remained unstable, reports the press centre of ATO.

During the day, the positions of Ukrainian troops suffered attacks from the banned weapons near Avdiyivka, Kirovo, Berezove, Yasnobrodivka, Kurdyumovka, Pervomayske Novotroyitske, Pisky, Stanytsya Luhanska, Krasnogorovka, Lozove, Mykolayivka. Ukrainian military positions were mostly (20 times) shelled near Maryinka. Ukrainian military fired back with small arms.

After militants announced the beginning of removal of heavy weapons, international observers noted “more intensive” movement of weapons in Donbas, admitted the Head of the SMM OSCE in Ukraine Alexander Huh on July 20 in an interview with news agency dpa, reports DW.

Corps for Operational and Rapid Actions will be created on the basis of the battalion “Dnipro-1,” to combat organized crime, announced Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk in Dnipropetrovsk, reports “Ukrinform.”

Trilateral contact group agreed in Minsk to withdraw tanks and 100-mm calibre artillery weapons, announced Press Secretary of President of Ukraine Svyatoslav Tseholko.

On July 21, despite recent agreements on the withdrawal of tanks and artillery, the militants attacked Ukrainian troops 80 times, reported the press centre of ATO.

On July 22, militants shelled residential areas of Dzerzhinsk, reported the press service of the Interior Ministry in Donetsk region. As a result of the shelling some houses are reported to be destroyed and a 76-year-old was hospitalized with shrapnel wounds.

The SBU reports that currently about 200 Ukrainian citizens remain in terrorist captivity, reported Yuri Tandit, the newly appointed Advisor to the Chairman of the SBU at a briefing on Friday. According to him, this number is approximate because the data on hostages is constantly updated. According to Tandit, the Centre to Free Hostages, SBU, found 11 Ukrainian citizens in Russia who were illegally transferred across the border, but in general the department believe that about 30 citizens of Ukraine have been abducted by the Russian Federation.

On July 24, after nightfall, militants greatly increased shelling positions of Ukrainian troops, reported the press centre of ATO Staff.

Number of attacks per day was more than 70. Militants activated in all directions.

In Luhansk region SBU detained the Armed Forces military of the battalion “Artemivsk” that accompanied smuggling, announced President Poroshenko in an interview with TV Channel STB.

The ATO headquarters denied the information about the alleged withdrawal of units of the battalion “Azov” from positions near Shyrokyne and the battalion “Aydar” in Luhansk area.

Politics and Economics

President Poroshenko appointed Serhiy Drozdov to be the Air Force Commander of Ukraine. The corresponding decree of July 20 is published on the website of the President.

Odesa Governor Mikheil Saakashvili is in the process of renunciation of Georgian citizenship, reported the press service of Odesa Regional State Administration to “Ukrainian Pravda.”

President Poroshenko said that Kyiv expects clear statements from the representatives of the so-called LNR/DNR to refuse to conduct pseudo-elections on October 18 and November 1, the press service of the head state reported.

The Prosecutor General Shokin made a submission to the Parliament on the criminal prosecution and seizure of MP Andriy Lozovyi. MP Lyashko considers it the President Poroshenko’s revenge for the position in voting against the special status of Donbas. “Poroshenko personally threatened me to make submission to MPs from Radical Party if they do not support the law,”- said Lyashko.

Ukraine signed a Memorandum On Economic and Financial Policy in Cooperation with the International Monetary Fund and expects to obtain the next tranche of USD1.7 billion, announced the Deputy Finance Minister Artem Shevalov.

SBU blocked UAH 110 million in the State Treasury to be transferred to LLC “MAKO-Trading” owned by Oleksander Yanukovych, the press service of the SBU reports.

British Mark Rollins is chosen by Ukrnafta shareholders to be the Head of the Supervisory Board. The decision was adopted at a general meeting in Kyiv on July 22. 99.97% of shareholders supported the candidacy of Rollins.

The governor of Odesa region reported that the head of Ilyichivsk Port was suspended from duty because of suspicion in corruption. According to Saakashvili, the decision to remove the head of the port Yuriy Kruk was taken on Wednesday night at the Ministry level.

On July 24, Ministry of Finance of Ukraine paid USD120 million coupon on Eurobonds, reported a source in the Finance Ministry.

The leader of the Communist Party of Ukraine Petro Symonenko said that the Ministry of Justice decision on deprivation CPU of the status of a political party and a ban to participate in the electoral process will not affect the plans of the Communists to take part in elections. Symonenko said this, commenting on statements of the NSDC Secretary Oleksandr Turchynov and Head of the Ministry of Justice Pavlo Petrenko.

In Chernihiv, activists detained the car with duplicate seals of PEC and DEC of all polls of the constituency 205 during the “day of silence” before the by-elections to the Verkhovna Rada, reported MP from the “Batkivshchyna” Ihor Lutsenko.

President Poroshenko called “shame” election process in the Constituency 205 in Chernihiv on the eve of the by-elections to the Verkhovna Rada and gave some guidance in this regard to the Interior Minister Arsen Avakov.

International Arena

Interpol deleted a data file of Viktor Yanukovych from the category of wanted persons. As stated by the advocate company Joseph Hage Aaronson, which sought cancellation of searching Yanukovych, this happened after the advocates’ appeal.

Advocates argue that the Interpol accepted their allegations of “political motivation” of Yanukovych’s pursuit in Ukraine.

The Security Council of the Netherlands has to provide a report on the downed in Donbas Malaysian Airlines Boeing until August 10 but without stating guilty, reported Deputy Foreign Minister of Ukraine for European Integration Olena Zerkal.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Development of France called unauthorized by Kyiv visit of French parliamentarians to Crimea as violation of international law. This position voiced French Foreign Ministry Spokesman Romain Nadal, reports Ukrinform.

Polska Times reported about a crash of a bus into the tree with Ukrainians on board on Thursday, at 6am, near Garwolin, Poland. As a result of the accident four people were killed, dozens were injured.

The UK referendum on membership in the European Union can take place in mid-2016, reports The Independent, citing anonymous sources. The official representative of the Prime Minister refused to comment on the message. According to him, the date of the referendum will be voiced by the Prime Minister during the Conservative Party Congress to be held in October.

Russian President Vladimir Putin approved a new Maritime Doctrine of the Russian Federation, reported the website of the Kremlin. “The doctrine is prepared and approved. This is a significant event for the future of the fleet, and for the development of shipbuilding,” – said Putin.

Bridge EU-Ukraine and the Association of Ukrainians in Belgium (TUB) organised the evening “Art and war”

On Sunday 21 June, Bridge EU-Ukraine and the Association of Ukrainians in Belgium (TUB) organised the evening, “Art and war”, together with a wonderful team of talented and big- hearted Ukrainians: Genadiy Druzenko, Oleksandr Klymenko, Taras Kompanichenko and Aleks Puha.
The evening was part of their international tour to promote their project “Buy an icon, save a life”. During our event in the Ukrainian House of TUB we managed to raise over 1000 euro, that will be donated to support the Pirogov First Volunteer Mobile Hospital. Our evening was attended by members of the Ukrainian community as well as by foreign friends of Ukraine, from the United Kingdom, Bulgaria and as far as India. We were joined during the evening by the Association of Ukrainian Women in Belgium, who rushed from their annual conference to be with us and thus contribute to making this evening a very special one.
The evening lasted for over 7 hours, in a very intense and emotional atmosphere.
Genadiy explained how the idea of the creation of a mobile hospital was sparked by the horrifying statistics of the Debaltzeve battle. Indeed, one wounded in three died because he could not be treated on time. Volunteers, like Genadiy, came up with the idea to bring medical equipment to the front, instead of risking the wounded’s life trying to transport them to the closest hospital, often situated far away from the front line.
Oleksandr Klymenko introduced us to his and his wife’s magnificent works of art, unique Orthodox icons, painted on ammunition boxes boards brought from the ATO zone. Oleksandr donates 70% of the proceeds of the sale of the icons to the mobile hospital project. It is a unique art project carrying a very deep symbolism. The ammunition boxes, as instruments of death are also the medium with which our volunteers can save lives in this fight for Ukraine and ultimately for Europe.
Taras Kompanichenko, a kobzar, banduryst, lirnyk was a very powerful and moving participant in this extraordinary evening. Taras, who played a part in the excellent movie “The Guide” guided the audience through the centuries, playing songs form as far as the 15th century. His deep knowledge of the subject and his erudition gave the audience an amazing insight into Ukrainian music and culture, touching the soul of the audience at the very deepest level.
Aleks Puha shared with us his experience from the front, where,as a soldier he took part in many battles.
The 7 hours we spent together were an amazing experience for all of us. There was a distinct sense of unity among all the participants of this memorable event, a sense of belonging to something bigger, far bigger than the sum of us, a sense of sharing a common past, a common present and journeying towards a common future.

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Ukrainian organisations in Belgium address three EU Member States with an appeal to ratify AA

June 27 marks exactly one year after the signing of the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement, a document of vital importance for Ukraine on its road towards becoming a democratic European country.
We are very grateful to those EU Member States, who understand that the Association Agreement is one of the essential tools to ensure the freedom and well-being of Ukrainian citizens and have by now officially completed the legislative process, or are going through the final stages of the AA ratification.
Regretfully, three MS, Greece, Cyprus and Austria, have not yet initiated the process of ratification, or are at such an early stage that the chances of completing it before the end of the current political term are very slim.
We, the representatives of Ukraine’s civil society NGOs Bridge EU-Ukraine, the Association of Ukrainians in Belgium (TUB), the Association of Ukrainian women in Belgium, NGO Barvinok, NGO Open Dialogue Foundation( Fundacja Otwarty Dialog) jointly with the representative of Ukrainian media Andriy Lavreniuk, have sent an official letter to those countries’ representations to the EU.
We are looking forward to their answer and do hope that soon we will be able to send our gratitude to these three remaining Member States.

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Monitoring, June 15-21

Situation in Eastern Ukraine

Last week started with shelling maintenance crewby militants near Popasna- one person was injured, reported Head of LuhanskRegional Military-Civilian Administration HennadiyMoskalon his website.

On June 16, militants shelled about 30 times the position of Ukrainian military and peaceful settlements in a war zone, reportedthe press centre of ATO. Militants used 120-mm mortars and 122-mm howitzersnear Donetsk. In particular, Pisky, Opytne, Starohnativka were shelled. In Luhanskregion militants fired Krymske,StanytsiaLuhanska and Shchastyausing small arms. Militants actively use reconnaissance drones along the boundary line.

Near the village Kryakivka,there was recorded a fight between Ukrainian military and a sabotage and intelligence group of militants that snuck in Ukraine’s controlled territory from the right bank of the Siverskyi Donets.As a result of the fight, two Ukrainian soldiers were killed and two were seriously injured. Now they are in hospital.

OnWednesdaynight militants tried twice to break the Ukrainian military positions.

During the day, gunmen shelled58 times ATO forces positions and civilians.

Russian sniperswere neutralized in the village Luhanske, reports DmytroTymchuk,“Information Resistance.”

Terrorists attacked the village Maryinka again, informed adviser to the head of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine ZorianShkiryak. According to the report, militants started the offensive in Maryinkaon June 17 at 11.40pm. Terrorists used heavy artillery, ACS, tanks, guns “Rapira,” “Carnations” and 120-mm mortars with cluster mines. Ukrainian military from 28, 20, and 93 brigades of Armed Forces and National Guard soldiers and Interior Ministry held in checkthe enemy that has significant losses in manpower and equipment. The ATO Staff reported that militants tried to dislodge the Ukrainian troops from Maryinka, but suffered losses.

On June 18, gunmen shelled 90 times the position of Ukrainian forces across the boundary using Grads, combat vehicles, small arms and grenade launchers, reported the press centre of ATO Staff.

After shelling Maryinka district,there were destroyed more than 1,000 houses, reports the press service of Donetsk Regional State Administration.

Population of Maryinkadistrict before the active hostilities was 84.7 thousand, nowadays – about 72 thousand. Three communities are beyond the control of Ukraine.

It is noted that the head of Donetsk Regional State Administration Zhebrivskyi met with the head of district administration Victor Moroz and discussed infrastructure renewal and other related issues.

Activity of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine on June 16-19.

Adopted documents:

1. The Law “On Ukraine’s Accession to the International Convention on the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Abduction;”

2. The Law “On Amendments to Annex 2 of the Statute of Internal Service of the Armed Forces of Ukraine;”

3. The Law “On Amendments to Some Legislative Acts of Ukraine regarding Increasing Transparency in the Extractive Industries Ukraine;”

4. The Law “On Amendments to the Code of Ukraine “On Administrative Violations to Strengthen the Fight against Poaching and Environmental Protection;”

5. The Law “On Amendments to Article 14 of the Law of Ukraine “On Employment regarding the Right to Additional Safeguards in Promoting the Employment of the Parents or the Person who Replaces them Having any Dependents under the Age of Six;”

6. The Law “On Amendments to Certain Legislative Acts of Ukraine regardingthe Competencyof the National Bank of Ukraine;”

7. The Law “On Amendments to the Budget Code of Ukraine regarding the Competencyof the National Bank of Ukraine;”

8. The Law “On Amendments to the Tax Code of Ukraine regarding Peculiarities of Taxation and Collection of Military Tax on Salaries of Military Personnel and Other Persons Directly Involved in the Anti-Terrorist Operation;”

9. The Law “On Amendments to the Law of Ukraine “On Housing Services” (regarding accrual of subsidies to pensioners and the disabled).”

Ratified documents:

1. The Memorandum of Understanding between Ukraine, the Borrower, and the European Union, the Lender, and the Loan Agreement between Ukraine, the Borrower, the National Bank of Ukraine, the Financial Agent of the Borrower, and the European Union,the Creditor, (regarding granting macro-financial assistance to Ukraine by the European Union, amounting to 1 billion 800 million euro);

2. The Implementation Agreement between the Government of Ukraine and NATO to support (TNA) on re-disposal of radioactive waste that was generated during the execution of military programs of the former USSR in Ukraine;

Politics and Economics

The Verkhovna Rada Speaker, Mr. Groysman, repeatedly appealed to the Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk regarding the cooperation of the Parliament with ministries on the issue of indexation of wages and pensions. He stated this at the conciliatory council on Monday. According to him, previous application did not produce results and the dialogue with the ministries has not yet started.

Ukraine will not pay Russia for the supply of electricity to occupied Donbas, announced Acting Director of “Ukrenergo”Yuriy Kasichin an interview with“Interfax-Ukraine.” According to him, the Russian side was informed in advance about the unwillingness of Ukraine to pay overflows balance between power systems of Ukraine and Russia (five power lines are located in areas outside the control of Kyiv in Donbas).

Kasich also said that Luhansk TPP has been working in isolation from the main part of UES Ukraine since last year and overflows between Starobeshivskaand ZuyivskaTES with UES of Ukraine are minimal.

YanikaMerylo became Adviser toMayor Sadovyi. Former Adviser to the Minister of Economic Development and Trade of Ukraine YanikaMerylo became a freelance adviser to the mayor of Lviv on new technologies, said Mayor AndriySadovyi.

The Parliament took the first step toward opening the final media owners, byadopting in first reading the draft law no.1831, which provides for mandatory disclosure of the names of beneficial owners of the media. 240 MPs supported this decision. Then 229 MPs supported the consideration of the document in the second reading under theshortened procedure.

The author of the draft law is the MP from the “People’s Front”MykolaKnyazhytskyi who, in particular, has long been emphasizedthe lack of reliable information on the ultimate owners of the TV channel “Inter.” In this regard, in his opinion, the license for broadcasting was illegallyprolonged for 7 years.

Yanukovych’s Minister expands gas business in Ukraine. LLC “First Ukrainian Petroleum Company” received permission for development of technical documentation on land management for the exploitation of two sites on Ohultsivske gas deposit in Kharkiv region.

Shokin asked the Parliament to grant the arrest of Klyuyev. Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin addressed to the Parliament with the request of giving consent to criminal prosecution, detention and arrest of MP SerhiyKlyuyev. According to information,Shokinsubmitted the request on June 16 “within the new criminal proceedings concerning Klyuyev.”

Prosecutor’s Office informed that the politician committed a criminal offense under Article 209 Part 3 (committing transactions with property in especially large amounts obtained as a result of the socially dangerous act that preceded the legalization (laundering) as well as actions aimed at concealing and disguising the illicit origin of such property rights to such property). In addition, Klyuevis suspected of committing a crime underArt. 369 Part 5 (providing an official, who takes a particularly responsible position, with undue benefit in a large scale for the commission by an official in the interests of providers and unlawful benefit of a third party actions using its official position).

The Constitutional Court allowed to deprive the judges and MPs of immunity, reported the head of the court YuriyBaulin at a press conference on Friday, according to “Ukrainian News.”

The Court recognized that the deprivation of immunity does not limit the rights and freedoms enshrined in the Constitution. The Court also decided that the transfer of the Parliament powers on approvalof detention and arrest of judgesto the High Council of Justicecomplies with the Basic Law. Though, the Constitutional Court finds that bringing judges to responsibility for violation of the oath is a controversial rule that does not meet international legislation.

Overall, the Constitutional Court declared the norms of the draft law no.1776 in conformity to the Constitution.

As you know, the draft lawno.1776 offersto exclude the normfrom the Article 80 of the Constitution, according to which,MPs are ensured parliamentary immunity and that they may not be prosecuted, detained or arrested without the consent of the Verkhovna Rada.

As you know, the Parliament adopted the draft law on deprivation of immunity of MPs and judges in February and, according to the procedure, submitted it to the Constitutional Courtfor analysis. According to the Speaker Groysman, the document may finally pass into law in September.

International Level

The United States announced their intention to place fighters F-22 Raptorin Europe, in response to provocation with Russian military aircraft, reported rbc.ruwith reference to The Wall Street Journal.

At 51stInternational Air Show at Le Bourget,US Air Force Minister Deborah Lee James announced the US plans to place fighters of the fifth generationin Europe.

McCain on refusal to arm Ukraine:it’s the most flagrantpage in US history.

US Senator John McCain, known for lobbying the interests of Ukraine, considers the failure to provide Kyiv with weapons to protect from Russia as “one of the most shameful pages in the history of the USA.”

As you know, the United States provided Ukraine with non-lethal means of defence, but denied providing lethal weapons.

NATO and Russia have begun a new “arms race” – UK Defence Minister

Britain and its NATO partners have entered into a new arms race with Russia, as in times of “cold war,” reports The Times, citing the British Defence Minister Michael Fallon.

According to Fallon, NATO military exercises in Poland at the very borders of Russia send a signal to Moscow that NATO cannot be intimidated.

Fallon made this statement after it was reported that several Russian warships came “very close” to the four NATO ships participating in the manoeuvres in the Baltic Sea. Flagship of the Royal Navy of Great Britainwas among them.

Lithuania is ready to become an example for othersin providing Ukraine with weapons, stated the Ambassador of Lithuania to Ukraine Yanukonis Marius in the air of “Channel 5.”

France arrested Russian assets because of Yukos, following Belgium. Former shareholders of Yukos obtainedRussia’s assets arrest, not only in Belgium but also in France, reported Forbes, citing a source close to Yukos shareholders.

This information was officially confirmed on Thursday by Russian presidential aide Andrei Belousov in the comments with RIA “Novosti.”

As you know, on Wednesdayevening, the Russian media issued a statement that the bailiffs “arrested property” of Russian organizations, registered in Belgium, because of the risk of default by the Russian side to implement ECHRdecision re Yukos.

Later, it became known that the arrest took place notpursuant to the ECHR decision, but the Permanent Court of Arbitration at The Hague in the case Yukos shareholdersvs Russia.

EU will give Ukraine 70 million euros for achievements in the field of rule of law, stated Johannes Hahn,the European Commissioner for Enlargement and European Neighbourhood Policy, at a joint press conference with President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko in Kyiv.

The Commissioner did not mention the exact amount, but it may be about 70 million euros from EU funds framework.

Hahnalso said that the EU is ready to grant 100 million euros to support small and medium businesses to prepare for the start of the FTA.

US Senators allowed supply of lethal weapons to Ukraine,reported DW referring to agency AFP.

The respective section is included in the approved on June 18, by a majority of votes of the Senate, law on the defence budget for the next fiscal year. The adoption of the financial plan of the Pentagon in the existing wording took place despite warnings from the White House.

71 Senators votedfor Pentagon spending of USD612 billion. 25 Senators were against this. The new fiscal year begins on October 1.

According to the adopted draft law, it is expected to provide military assistance to Ukraine in the amount of USD300 million. Assistance will include radar systems and anti-tank systems.

The EU continued sanctions againstCrimea for another year.

On June 19, the EU Council extended the EU restrictive measures imposed against Russia in response to the illegal annexation of Crimea and Sevastopol, until June 23, 2016.

This is stated in the message of the EU. The sanctions include a ban on:

-imports of goods from Crimea and Sevastopol;

– investments in Crimea or Sevastopol;

-tourist services in Crimea and Sevastopol, in particular, European cruise ships cannot go to the Crimean ports;

-export of certain goods and technology to Crimea, particularly in the field of transportation, telecommunications and energy.

Former Foreign Minister of Estonia, UrmasPaet, MEP, argues that the EU have reached agreement on the extension of sanctions against Russia.

He said the sanctions will continue “until the end of January next year.” The decision will be taken on Monday, June 22, at a meeting of the EU Council.

“This is a compromise between the 28 Member States. The situation in eastern Ukraine has notimproved; the truce has been violated in recent weeks, dozens of times a day. Annexation of Crimea continues,”- he explained the motive of EU decision.

Liberals to discuss “Ukranian issue”

At the initiative of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe and the full support of NGO“Bridge Ukraine-EU”there was held a discussion meeting on the EU Eastern Partnership in the walls of the European Parliament, which brought together representatives of liberal parties of Moldova, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Ukraine, Russia, delegates from Belarus and EULiberals, reported Natalia Sevidova, head of NGO “Bridge Ukraine – EU,” on herFaceebok page.

ALDE Group Leader in the European Parliament Guy Verhofstadt opened the event.He made unequivocal condemnation of Putin’s aggression and willingness to support Ukraine in all liberal-democratic projects. Other MEPs, like Hans van Baalen and PetrasAuštrevičius,supported his colleague and called on all Liberals to cooperation and noted the importance of a quick settlement of the military conflict in Ukraine.

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Speechof Mikhail Kasyanov,former Russian Prime Minister, leader of the Liberal Party “RPR-Parnass,”seemed very apt.He clearly expressed his position: “Crimea is Ukraine and once Putin’s regime is overthrown, Crimea will be back to Ukraine. Europe has to be more severe in the matter of upholding its values. It is necessary to actively demonstrate its position not only in word but also in deeds.”

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Sergei Mitrokhinleader of the liberal Russian party “Yabloko” supported his countryman.

The delegation from Ukraine was represented by the leader of the European Party of Ukraine MykolaKaterynchuk, who appealed to the representatives of the European Parliament with a clear proposal to control and limit the broadcasting of Russian propaganda channels that appear in the European dimension and sponsored by corruptionfunds, and called for control over the Russian corruption investments which massively penetrate the important political and business structures of Europe!”

Head of “Bridge Ukraine – EU” Natalia Sevidovamade a constructive proposal toestablish a permanent working group of MEPs in Ukraine that could work with both Ukrainian politicians and representatives of civil society not only in Kyiv but also in the regions of Ukraine. In the end, it will help strengthen the confidence of communities at the local level in EU support and could teach people to control power and defend their positions.

In addition, Ms. Sevidova called on liberal friends who represent post-Soviet countries, to engage in political and social projects in Ukraine. “It is important to be united in opposition to the Kremlin aggression. I am convinced that our neighbours and EU members, and those seeking membership in the European Union need to study more deeply the Kremlin-Ukrainian conflict in order to avoid this brutal war,”- summed up Natalia Sevidova.

Saakashvili to be appointed Odesa governor today – Odesa Regional Administration

The Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine has made a submission on the appointment of ex-President of Georgia Mikheil Saakashvili as chairman of the Odesa Regional State Administration, having granted the request of the President of Ukraine.

Spokesperson for President of Ukraine, Stanislav Tseholko, has posted this on Facebook.

The new governor is to be officially presented in Odesa today, at 14:30, media report citing local officials.

In addition, Ukraine’s Ukrayinska Pravda online newspaper, citing its own source, informs that Mikheil Saakashvili was granted citizenship of Ukraine on Friday.

Read more there: http://www.ukrinform.ua/eng/news/saakashvili_to_be_appointed_odesa_governor_today___odesa_regional_administration_331842