Tag Archives: Crimea blockade

Donetsk Lugansk News Nov 21-26 2015

Thursday, November 26, 2015

(--worldbulletin.net/AFP/ Anatoli Stepanov)

(–worldbulletin.net/AFP/ Anatoli Stepanov)

UAF continues to shell Donetsk; fire fights resumed at Spartak / Translated by J. Arnoldski / Fort Russ / November 26, 2015 / Despite yesterday’s statements on the prohibition of firing on the front line which was voiced by Ukrainian media, punitive forces are continuing to shell the outskirts of Donetsk. As DAN and the Ministry of Defense of the DPR reported, yesterday evening at 21:00 the UAF bombarded Kievsky district and damaged a residential home. “Yesterday evening at 21:00, Ukrainian security forces opened fire on the Kievsky district of Donetsk. As a result, a piercing shell hit and damaged a residential home,” the military said. The Information Agency Novorossia’s sources added that around the same time a thick fire fight was resumed in Spartak district. The UAF shelled the positions of Donbass defenders with automatic grenade launchers. The Ukrainian military did not calm down by morning. The head of the Yasinovataya city administration, Yurii Ynenko, stated that the UAF opened mortar fire on the surroundings of the Donetsk-North railway station in the Yasinovataya district of the DPR. As a result, a residential home was burned down. “Around 6:00 in the morning, the outskirts of Yasinovataya near the Donetsk-North station were shelled with mortars. A hit on a private home was recorded and employees of the Ministry for Emergency Situations arrived at the scene, and the fire was extinguished,” Yanenko reported.

Ukrainians Shell Donetsk Today – Twitter Report As It Happens / Quemado Institute / November 26, 2015 / There are reports on Twitter today at about 20:00 UTC that the Ukrainian Armed Forces are shelling Donetsk. Well-known pro-Donbass source Enrico Ivanov tweets: “Breaking! Ukrainian shellings on Donetsk Oktyabrsky district!” An unfriendly source in the area, who is usually reliable, tweets: “20:10 Donetsk Kirovsky district: Very perceptible heavy shots south-westward, not close ones. / 20:18 Donetsk Again rumble of a heavy salvo, from the same position. / 20:19 Donetsk One can hear tanks and machine guns from Putilovka-Spartak toward airport direction for 30 minutes so far. / 20:27 Donetsk center, since 19:30 firing is audible, pretty loud shooting and explosions, now closer yet further. / 20:27 Donetsk: I can hear booms and assault rifles from Smolyanka or Azotny direction. / 20:28 Donetsk Zaperevalna doesn’t cease, either cannons or tanks. / 20:31 Donetsk Proletarsky Machine guns far off and periodic salvos at 20:24-20:27.  / Panfilova-Vishnevskogo St: machine guns are loud and frequent, in pauses some blasts. / Zaperevalna: non-stop cannons or tanks (salvos) / Heavy salvos are heard north-westward. / Loudly all around, tanks, cannons, MG-ARs. / Ah, it boomed once again hell strongly. / Rumbling lasts, still that loud. / 20:42 Donetsk center, I went home, even being in apartment I can hear artillery clearly. / 20:44 Donetsk: Ongoing battle near the airport.”

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Denis Pushilin (--DAN)

Denis Pushilin (–DAN)

Statement by Denis Pushilin on Double Standards of Turkish Authorities / DAN / Edited autotranslation / November 26, 2015 / The situation surrounding the Syrian conflict, as well as the attitude of the Turkish Government toward the terrorists of the LIH [sic] increasingly resembles the principles of the policy of double standards. Turkish diplomats have repeatedly stated the importance of counter-terrorism and anti-LIH, while voicing disagreement with the actions of the Russian Federation in Syria during videoconferences. And the fact that the Turkish fighter jet shot down a Russian Su-24, which took part in anti-terrorist operations in Syria and was not a threat to Turkey, is direct proof. Such actions of the Turkish government can be regarded as an unceremonious violation of all norms of international law. We are completely in agreement with the President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin and the majority of Russians who negatively regard the policy of double standards in relation to Turkey’s terrorists and the situation in the Middle East. Who, if not the inhabitants of the Donetsk People’s Republic, know better what the policy of double standards is, when the US and Europe greet with enthusiastic shouts the “dignity revolution” in Kiev, which, in fact, was a coup d’etat that brought to power the pro-fascist, radical elements, while at the same time, condemning and criticizing the actions of activists in Donbass who are defending their rights and freedoms? When European leaders, over the moans and cries of dying people of Donetsk People’s Republic, only hear promises by Poroshenko on the peaceful settlement of the conflict? When we were condemned in absentia and called terrorists just because we dared to resist the trampling of our rights? The policy of double standards and flirting with real terrorists threatens Turkey and all of Europe with disastrous tragic consequences. We call on the international community to learn from history and today’s realities. You should not indulge the major geopolitical players to the detriment of their own people. —Denis Pushilin, chairman of the National Council of the People’s Republic of Donetsk.

Alexander Zakharchenko (--DAN)

Alexander Zakharchenko (–DAN)

After Sabotage Against Crimea, Head of DPR Takes Personal Control to Protect Infrastructure / DAN / Edited autotranslation / November 26, 2015 / Head of the DPR Alexander Zakharchenko has taken personal control of the protection of transport and energy security in the Republic after the explosion of transmission lines in the Kherson region of Ukraine. This was reported today to DAN by the Acting Head of the Strategy for Development of Industry Administration Eduard Polyakov. “Additional measures were introducted to strengthen the protection of property. This was done so professionally that Kiev did not even notice. The entire organization of protection is under the personal control of the Head of the DPR,” a spokesman said. He added that the implementation of plans to strengthen the security activities regarding infrastructure was made possible thanks to the joint efforts of the Emergency Situations Ministry and the DPR Interior Ministry. Earlier, the press service of the Interior Ministry reported that the police stepped up the security of the infrastructure of the Republic in connection with the diversion in the Kherson region, where Ukrainian extremists blew up supports of the high-voltage line providing electricity to Russia’s Crimean peninsula. The corresponding decree is already in force.

Turkish Air Force F-16 (-- Flickr/UK Ministry of Defence)

Turkish Air Force F-16 (– Flickr/UK Ministry of Defence)

Make No Mistake: Su-24 Downing by Turkey a ‘Clear Act of War’ – US Author / Sputnik / November 26, 2015 / Make no mistake, US author Stephen Lendman stresses, by downing Russia’s Su-24 aircraft Turkey committed a clear act of war against a nonthreatening nation. By striking Russia’s Su-24 Turkey has obviously committed an act of aggression against Russia; however, it is highly naive to believe that President Erdogan acted alone, unilaterally deciding to attack the Russian plane, US author and syndicated columnist Stephen Lendman emphasizes. In his latest piece for Global Research Lendman calls attention to the fact that Ankara’s obvious lies about the Russian Su-24 entering the Turkish airspace being warned almost “ten times” have been accepted as the truth by Western leaders and NATO officials. “As we have repeatedly made clear, we stand in solidarity with Turkey and support the territorial integrity of our NATO Ally, Turkey,” NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said in an official statement after . . . MORE>> Click here. Editor’s Note: Stephen Lendman’s article is available at Global Research.

slavnov26wGeorgia-Russia checkpoint turns away trucks with Turkish registration / Translated for Fort Russ by Ollie Richardson / Fort Russ / November 26, 2015 / Russian border guards at the checkpoint of “Kazbegi –Upper Lars” haved blocked the passage to Russia via Georgia following the transit of trucks with Turkish plates, according to the correspondent of the newspaper LOOK in Georgia with reference to the news Agency “Pirveli”. According to the Agency, hundreds of trucks on the border with the Georgian side have accumulated. Vehicles with other number plates have been allowed to pass through. According to drivers of vehicles with a Turkish registration, the Russian border guards do not explain the reasons for the refusal, however, they attribute the fact that relations between the two countries are going through a difficult time after the attack by Turkish jets on the Russian plane in Syria. Officials in Tbilisi are yet to comment. The checkpoint is in the mountains, temperatures are low, weather conditions are difficult.

Baku, capital of Azerbaijan (--Fort Russ)

Baku, capital of Azerbaijan (–Fort Russ)

Azerbaijan recalls Consul General from Turkey / Translated for Fort Russ by Kristina Rus / Fort Russ / November 26, 2015 / President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev has signed a decree to recall the Consul General of Azerbaijan in Istanbul and at the same time the permanent representative of Azerbaijan in the Black Sea Economic Cooperation Organization, Hasan Zeynalov, reports the official website of the President. Another decree of the President recalled from office the permanent representative of Azerbaijan to the UN office at Geneva and other international organizations, Murad Najafbeyli. *** Kristina Rus: Azerbaijan’s two big brothers traditionally have been Russia and Turkey. However, this proud small resource rich nation was not eager to become a Western vassal as it has been pressured to. It has always honored the age old ties with Russia and prefers Russia’s approach of mutual cooperation (and its meticulous balancing act in Nagorny Karabah dispute with Armenia) rather then Western approach of domination. Ilham Aliev’s latest gesture is a strong move which shows whose side Azerbaijan is on.

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

Detail showing South Ossetia
slavnov26t
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Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Alexander Zakharchenko (--AZ website)

Alexander Zakharchenko (–AZ website)

Head of the DPR: Process of Ukraine’s Accession to NATO Not Conducive to Political Settlement / Zakharchenko’s official website (in Russian) / Edited autotranslation by Quemado Institute / November 24, 2015 / Poroshenko’s answer to the e-petition for a referendum on NATO membership, which attracted only 25 thousand votes from the multi-million Ukrainian people, is puzzling. On the one hand, Poroshenko apparently adheres to democratic procedures, and even suggests that the issue of accession to NATO should be decided by national referendum. But on the other hand, he says that Kiev is heading to increase military cooperation with NATO, which aims toward membership in this organization. That is, the last statement contradicts the first. People should decide, but the government has already decided everything and is rebuilding the army and the entire military infrastructure to NATO standards. This characterizes the position of Kiev post-Maidan pseudo-democratic views on power. For my part, I want to reiterate that the effort of Kiev to join NATO as a military alliance is against the spirit of the Minsk Agreements, because it does not take into account the opinion of Donbass. The process of Ukraine’s accession to NATO is not only not conducive to political settlement, but it poses extreme difficulties. I can only confirm that at the beginning of the official process of Ukraine’s accession to NATO by Kiev, the Donetsk People’s Republic will consider its release from the Minsk process. Thus, Minsk will actually denounce the agreement, and will be communicated to the initiators in Kiev. So I want to warn against imprudent statements by the officials in Kiev, especially regarding such actions that may be irreversible. Let me remind you that Donetsk People’s Republic at all levels has repeatedly stated their commitment to the Minsk Agreements and intends to continue to adhere to their letter and spirit. Hopefully, Kiev will also remain within the framework of the Minsk process and will not be engaged in its imitation, and will move from words to deeds. Quemado Institute comments: If our translation is accurate, Zakharchenko has said the DPR will consider exiting the Minsk Agreements if Kiev pursues NATO membership. We have been skeptical of Zakharchenko’s ability to act independently of Moscow. This issue poses a critical test. We support Zakharchenko’s decision and hope he lives up to his word.

slavnov25yZakharchenko on the Ideology of Those Responsible for the Republic / Zakharchenko official website (in Russian) / Edited autotranslation / November 23, 2015 / A formulation of the ideology of today is a vital necessity. When fighting broke out, the reason that we got involved was the cause of the negative. We rejected the nationalism of Bandera and fought against fascism. We were all against it. And now we are building a state, and we must understand what we are fighting, and what we aspire to. The question of ideology did not come today. And I feel that it is urgently needed. A country cannot develop without ideology. And I want all to participate in the process of establishing the ideology of our society. Therefore, I decided to consult with students. Why do we fight, what do we want to see next, and what kind of future are we building? These are questions that everyone should ask in their heart. And clearly formulate for themselves the idea, the concept for which they fight. Before meeting with the students of course, I had some preparation. These were the ideas of liberty, conscience, justice, and equality. These are the concepts that now lie at the heart of those things that I think, and I think that these ideas are shared by the majority of our fellow citizens. Moderator: From the perspective of the first letters of the USSR … Zakharchenko: Yes, you’ve been paying attention to it … It is no coincidence. The Soviet Union was the country in which we grew up, in which we lived, in which most of us were happy. There were a lot of good things. It was a continuation of the Russian Empire and a vast reservoir of our history. This is something from which we are all descended. This is the love of country, respect for the army, it is education, it is care for the elderly and children. We have no right to forget the good things that existed in the Soviet Union. Maybe there was a lot of bad advice, but as a way of government, it does not lose its relevance even today. I think we have to take the good things. These are free medicine, free education – the best in the world. America and Europe used our techniques and formed their teaching methods from our experience. We must remember this and these things should be on everyone’s tongue. But to talk about a clear understanding of the ideological program is still too early. That discussion, which I initiated in this society, must be reborn in the desire of everyone. To everyone it must be understood what freedom is, what equity is, what justice is, and what conscience is. Everyone knows what conscience is, do they not? Conscience is what we’ve always wanted. We have always said – live the truth, the truth. For centuries in the minds of any living Russian person is “to live according to conscience.” And all the laws that we adopt, we need to pass through the filter of conscience. We have a unique situation, we are building a new state. And you cannot miss the opportunity to build a state on the principle of “living according to conscience.” Conscience – this is what we breathe. On the basis of conscience stand all moral principles and norms. This is the criterion that must be held in every human heart. What is justice? This is another measure of conscience. The same equality and freedom. At the heart of these things is conscience. We need to build a country, to be free, fair, equal. And to live honestly!

Oleksandr Turchynov (--novorossia.su)

Oleksandr Turchynov (–novorossia.su)

Turchinov Says He Supports Turkey’s Actions in the Case of Su-24 / Novorossia.su / Edited autotranslation / November 25, 2015 / Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council (NSDC) of Ukraine Oleksandr Turchynov said that the Turkish military has acted correctly in the case of the violation of Turkish airspace by the Russian Su-24. On Tuesday, the Russian Su-24 crashed in Syria. Russian President Vladimir Putin said that the plane was shot down by a rocket-type air-to-air [missile] from Turkish F-16 aircraft over Syrian territory, and fell on the territory of Syria, four kilometers from the border with Turkey. The Russian president called it a “stab in the back” by the accomplices of terrorists. “The members of the Turkish Air Force and Air Defence acted professionally, and as the relevant units of any civilized country should act when its sovereign space is violated by the military aircraft of another State,” professed Oleksandr Turchynov. “[I]n the case of violations of our airspace by military aircraft,the Ukrainian military should act similarly, defending our country against aggression from the air,” added the press service of the Defense Council of Ukraine. Source: RIA Novosti

(--jordantimes.com)

(–jordantimes.com)

State of emergency in Crimea after right-wing extremists in Ukraine blow up electricity lines to the peninsula / by Roger Annis / NewColdWar.org / November 25, 2015 / Late on November, 21, right-wing extremists in Ukraine severed the four electricity lines which transmit electricity from Ukraine to Crimea. The terrorist attacks, using explosives, cut domestic electricity service to much of Crimea’s population of 2.3 million. Two of the transmission lines were damaged during the night of November 20-21. The coup de grace cutting all service to Crimea was delivered to the other two lines the following night. Photos of downed pylons with Ukrainian or Crimean-Tatar flags hanging on them have been posted online. “Crimea has been completely cut off,” Viktor Plakida director of Crimea’s state energy company, Krymenergo, told TASS Russian news service. A state of emergency has been declared in Crimea. Reserve electricity production using portable gas turbines and diesel generators is assuring electricity service to public institutions, including the national airport at Simferopol, bus and train service and television and radio broadcasting. But most Crimean citizens were left without power at home. Extremists supporting the blasts blocked crews from conducting repairs in the days following. In Kyiv, hundreds of right-wing protesters gathered at the Ministry of Internal Affairs (police) on the evening of the 21st, demanding that a full electricity blockade be instituted against the people of Crimea (video report here). The Ukrainian National Guard did secure at least one of the damaged lines, during the day on Nov 20. Guardsmen confronted violent protesters . . . MORE>> Click here.

(--Sputnik/ Sergey Malgavko)

(–Sputnik/ Sergey Malgavko)

Russia Vows to Respond if Ukraine Fails to Restore Electricity in Crimea / Sputnik / November 25, 2015 / The speaker of the Russian lower house of parliament, Valentina Matvienko, called the Crimean energy blockade “a terrorist act”. / MOSCOW / Russia is devising retaliatory measures if Ukraine does not restore electricity in Russia’s Crimea, the speaker of the Russian lower house of parliament, Valentina Matvienko, said Wednesday. Up to 2.5 million Crimeans were left without electricity over the weekend when explosions downed several transmission towers in southern Ukraine, according to Russia’s Emergencies Ministry. “If Ukraine does not restore Crimea’s power supply, we will be forced to respond with adequate measures. Such measures are being developed,” Matvienko told reporters. The senior lawmaker said the influence of radical nationalist factions on Ukrainian leadership reminded her of a “rudderless ship,” citing the lack of search operations for the culprits and no repair works underway. “This is not provocation, this is a terrorist act,” she stressed. A state of emergency has been declared in the Black Sea peninsula following the blackout, switching to local emergency power generators. Supporters of the Crimean energy blockade are continuing to prevent police and repair crew access to the damaged electrical facilities.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan (Obama not shown)

Recep Tayyip Erdogan

Obama and Erdogan agreed to destroy Russian plane at G20 / Translated for Fort Russ by Ollie Richardson / Fort Russ / November 25, 2015 / In the Arab media information is in circulation that the plan to destroy the Russian Su-24 aircraft was clearly spelled out between the leaders of the US and Turkey. It is reported in particular by Gerasa News. According to the newspaper, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan allegedly received support from U.S. President Barack Obama with a plan to shoot down the aircraft of the Russian Federation on the border with Syria. The compromising information in the Arab media was received from a source in the presidential administration of the USA. Also, reports in the Arab media stated that the moment for the su-24 decision was taken by Obama and Erdogan at the summit of “G20” in Antalya.

Erdogan's son lunches with ISIS

Turkish President Erdogan’s son lunches with ISIS leaders.

SU-24 Shootdown Planned: Erdogan Supports Islamic State – Opinion / Alex Zot’ev: Moment of Truth Arrives: the Mask is Dropped / Integrative*Mind (Source: Novorossia.su) / Autotranslation (unedited) / November 25, 2015 / Turkey yesterday’s demarche has opened many eyes to what is happening in the region. Russian aircraft shot down VCS, performing a combat mission to destroy the militants LIH (the organization’s activities in the Russian Federation is prohibited) on the territory of Syria, Turkish authorities finally put everything accents. Russian Su-24 was shot down in Syrian airspace, it is acknowledged by all, with the exception of Turkey. Thus today it can be argued that the campaign for the destruction of the Russian bomber was well planned and prepared. Speaking Russian, Erdogan knew what he is and is able to foresee the consequences. Given how serious they may be, we can assume that the stakes are very high. The attack on our aircraft has allowed high-ranking Russian politicians, including President Vladimir Putin openly accuse Turkey . . . MORE>> Click here.

slavnov25rInterview with rescued Russian Su24 Pilot (Video) / By Ollie Richardson / Fort Russ / November 25, 2015 / After being shot down by a Turkish F-16, the pilot was rescued by the Syrian Arab Army, escorted for 2 hours, before finally making it back to the airbase in Latakia. It is a miracle that he was not shot and killed as he descended in his parachute. One thing is for sure, the Turkish narrative of the events is dubious at best. We hope this man will be gifted the opportunity to exact revenge on the ISIS-supporting assailants. [VIDEO at source, no subtitles.]

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slavnov24xUS and Russia Harbor Paranoid Delusions: Response to Alexander Dugin and Edward Klein / by Karl Pomeroy / Quemado Institute / November 24, 2015 / Political Analysts Dugin and Klein Hoodwinked by Elite-Run Media / Both Western and Russian political analysts reveal radical unconscious paranoid assumptions about each other’s governmental policies. If I, as an observer, am neutral—and I am arguably more neutral than many commentators—both sides imagine a far more coherent and integrated campaign of hostility by the other side than actually exists. I can say this because of my relative neutrality. Almost 100 percent of my world news comes from alternate websites, some of them Russian, some even in the Russian language. The only exception is that I read books by American investigative journalists. (What books there are, that is. Oddly enough . . . MORE>> Click here.

slavnov25nNATO is harbouring the Islamic State. Why France’s brave new war on ISIS is a sick joke and an insult to the victims of the Paris attacks / by Nafeez Ahmed / NewColdWar.org / November 25, 2015 / The 13th November Paris massacre will be remembered, like 9/11, as a defining moment in world history. The murder of 129 people, the injury of 352 more, by ‘Islamic State’ (ISIS) acolytes striking multiple targets simultaneously in the heart of Europe, mark a major sea-change in the terror threat. For the first time, a Mumbai-style attack has occurred on Western soil — the worst attack on Europe in decades. As such, it has triggered a seemingly commensurate response from France: the declaration of a nationwide state of emergency, the likes of which have not been seen since the 1961 Algerian war. ISIS has followed up with threats to attack Washington and New York City. Meanwhile, President Hollande wants European Union leaders to suspend the Schengen Agreement on open borders to allow dramatic restrictions on freedom of movement across Europe. He also demands the EU-wide adoption of the Passenger Name Records (PNR) system allowing intelligence services to meticulously track the travel patterns of Europeans, along with an extension of the state of emergency to at least three months. Under the extension, French police can now block any website, put people under house arrest without trial, search homes without a warrant, and prevent suspects from meeting others deemed a threat. “We know that more attacks are being prepared, not just against France but also against other European countries,” said the French Prime Minister Manuel Valls. “We are going to live with this terrorist threat for a long time.” Hollande plans to strengthen the powers of police and security services under . . . MORE>> Click here.

slavnov25mFight Against Terror: Germany Faces Hard Choices / by Natalia Meden / Strategic Culture Foundation / November 25, 2015 / Right after the Paris terrorist attacks, anti-terrorist operations were launched in France – the country living under state of emergency – as well as some other European states. It became evident that the Schengen zone is vulnerable. Belgium and Germany, the neighboring countries located near the «French hotbed», were the first to react. It’s not only geography. What is more important is the assessment of the potential threats by their governments. Germany is threatened from within. Around 43,000 people (German citizens) are part of Islamist circles in Germany Holger Munch, the president of the German Federal Criminal Police Office . . . MORE>> Click here.
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Tuesday, November 24, 2015
(Brief update)

Arseney Yatsenyuk (--SCF)

Arseney Yatsenyuk (–Strategic Culture Foundation)

Kiev’s Bluff: Yatsenyuk’s Ultimatum over Ukraine’s Debt to Russia / by Valentin Katasonov / Strategic Culture Foundation / November 25, 2015 / The latest developments pertaining to Ukraine’s debt to Russia continue to unfold at a breakneck pace. At the Nov. 16 G20 summit in Turkey, President Vladimir Putin dropped a bombshell: Russia is prepared to restructure Ukraine’s debt and forgo the $3 billion payment that would have been due at the end of the year in accordance with the terms of the loan agreement. Moscow’s new terms can be summarized as follows: 1. Ukraine will repay the debt in installments (of $1 billion each) over the course of three years: in 2016, 2017, and 2018. 2. The United States, European Union, or a trustworthy financial institution will provide a guarantee that the debt will be repaid in accordance with the new schedule of payments. 3. The details of the new plan must be finalized by Dec. 8. Putin revealed a secret: the International Monetary Fund asked Russia to allow Ukraine . . . MORE>> Click here.

Vladimir Putin (--TASS)

Vladimir Putin (–TASS)

Putin: Russia will not tolerate such crimes as attack against its Sukhoi-24 plane / TASS / November 24, 2015 / SOCHI / Russia will not tolerate crimes like the attack on the Russian Su-24 fighter jet shot down by the Turkish Air Force in Syrian skies, President Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday at a meeting with King of Jordan Abdullah II. “I understand each country has its own regional interests, and we have always respected that. But we shall never tolerate crimes like today’s one,” the president said. The Russian leader stressed that the downed fighter-bomber was posing no threat to Turkey. “Our pilots and jet posed no threat to the Turkish Republic. This is obvious. They were conducting an operation against ISIL,” Putin said. He stressed the plane was flying above northern Lattakia where militants coming from Russia are concentrated. “The Russian bomber was shot down over Syria by an air-to-air surface fired from a Turkish F-16 plane when the bomber was at an altitude of 6,000 meters at a distance of 1 km from the Turkish bomber.” Putin said. “Now we’ve suffered stabs in the back: attacks against our planes that fight with terrorism,” Putin said. He pointed out that Turkey attacked Russia’s Sukhoi-24 although “we have signed agreements with the American partners on the prevention of incidents in the air, and Turkey, as is known, is among the countries that have declared they are ostensibly fighting against terrorism within the US-led coalition.”. Putin noted that Turkey’s contacts with NATO member states after the attack against the Russian aircraft look like an attempt to make the alliance serve terrorists. The Russian leader said that instead of immediately establishing contacts with Russia after the bomber incident, “the Turkish side applied to its NATO partners to discuss this issue, as far as we know.” “It seems as if we have shot down a Turkish plane and not vice versa,” the Russian president said. “So, does this mean that they want NATO to serve the Islamic State?” Putin noted. The president said the attack on the Russian jet will have tragic consequences to Russia-Turkey ties. “We will certainly carefully analyse what has happened and today’s tragic event will have serious consequences to Russian-Turkish relations,” he said. According to Putin, Russia has always treated Turkey not simply as a close neighbour, but as a friendly state. “I have no idea who needed what has happened today, but in any case it’s not us,” the Russian president said. He expressed hope “the international community will find the forces to unite in the face of this common evil (terrorism).” Turkey’s military attache in Russia has been summoned to the Russian Defense Ministry. Quemado Institute comments: Some observers speculate that Barack Obama gave the shootdown order to spite Putin for upstaging him at the G20, as well possibly to support the Islamic State, with which some believe Obama has ties.

slavnov24w17 Seconds’: No One’s Buying Turkey’s Version of Su-24 Story / Sputnik / November 24, 2015 / The Turkish government’s official explanation for shooting down a Russian Su-24 bomber was that it had violated Turkish airspace. But Ankara’s timeline of the events is already raising questions. In the wake of the downing of a Russian bomber along the Turkey-Syria border on Tuesday, many were demanding answers. In a letter to the United Nations Security Council, the Turkish ambassador gave his government’s view of the incident. This morning (24 November) 2 SU-24 planes, the nationality of which are unknown have approached Turkish national airspace in Yayladagi/Hatay region. The planes in question have been warned 10 times during a period of 5 minutes via ‘Emergency’ channel and asked to change their headings south immediately,” the letter, obtained by Wikileaks, reads. “Disregarding these warnings, both planes, at an altitude of 19,000 feet, violated Turkish national airspace to a depth of 1.36 miles and 1.15 miles in length for 17 seconds from 9.24.05 local time.” But many social media users have begun crunching those numbers and found that they don’t quite add up. When calculating the distance flown and the amount of time allegedly spent in Turkish airspace, some have attempted to determine the aircraft’s flight speed. According to those numbers, the Su-24 would have had to be flying at stall speed. Earlier on Tuesday, the Russian Ministry of Defense also released video proving that the incident did not happen the way the Turkish government claims. Flight path data of the Su-24 shows that it never entered Turkish airspace, and was attacked while flying over Syria. The bomber was shot down by two Turkish F-16s Tuesday morning. One of the pilots has been confirmed dead by Russian authorities, shot by rebel ground units after ejecting. Russian President Vladimir Putin described the incident as a “stab in the back, carried out against us by accomplices of terrorists.”

From Wikileaks:
Here is Turkey’s letter today to the UN Security
Council over Russian jet shootdown:
(click to enlarge.)
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slavnov24uRussian Defense Ministry Video Proves Su-24 Never Entered Turkish Airspace / Sputnik / November 24, 2015 / While authorities in Ankara have insisted that it shot down the Russian Su-24 bomber after the aircraft entered Turkish airspace, the Russian Defense Ministry has released video proving that the plane never left Syrian airspace. According to a leaked letter written to the UN Security Council by the Turkish Ambassador, Turkey’s military justified the shooting down of a Russian bomber by claiming that the aircraft had entered Turkish airspace for 17 seconds. But flight data released by Russian Ministry of Defense shows that the Su-24s never entered Turkey, and were attacked while performing legitimate maneuvers over Syria. On Tuesday, Turkish F-16s shot down a Russian Su-24M Fencer bomber. One of the pilots has been confirmed dead by Russian authorities, shot by rebel ground units after ejecting. Russian President Vladimir Putin described the incident as a “stab in the back, carried out against us by accomplices of terrorists.” [VIDEO available at source.]

slavnov24qSU-24 Shot Down: Accomplices of Terrorists Stab in the Back / by Dmitry Sedov / Strategic Culture Foundation / Nobember 24, 2015 / A SU-24 front-line bomber on a mission to strike the Islamic State terrorist group was brought down by Turkish air defense. It poses a lot of questions to be mulled over by politicians and military. Why does Ankara give priority to the so-called inviolability of its borders over the fight against the common enemy that is supposed to a joint endeavor? What is behind this stab in the back delivered by accomplices of the terrorists, as President Putin called them? The answer is clear enough: the Russian Aerospace Forces operated in the vicinity of Jarabulus, the Syrian city highly populated by Turkmen. They control the supply routes used by the Islamic State to receive arms and new recruits. The Russian aircraft hit the positions held by Turkmen formations. Ankara viewed it as an attack against Turkmen populated areas. Most important, the Syrian army supported by Russia’s Aerospace Forces advanced to the area of crucial importance for the Islamic State. This prompted the Turkish military to stage a provocation. The supply route must be kept intact even if it requires shooting down Russian aircraft. As someone who has no relation whatsoever to military matters, I’d like to offer an option for consideration – it’s easy to do. I suggest that Russian fighter-bombers abandon the area where the Su-24 was shot down. The positions of the Islamic State and the Turkmen who support it, should be leveled to the ground by cruise missiles strikes. I don’t know what the military will say, but that’s the Islamic State supply route must be blocked, come what may. There is no need to have any illusions that it would change the policy of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan as he conducts his so-called fight against terror. This is an unusual fight. Turkey is not on its own. The decision to attack the Russian aircraft was too important. No way could the Turkish military do it without consulting Washington first. Now everything is clear about the prospects for creating a “broad coalition”. The masks are pulled off. No more pretending, it’s all has come out in the open now. Since a long time ago the United States and NATO view the fight against the Islamic State as a game. Now they are trying to make it a bloodshed game for Russia to play. The Russian Aerospace Forces protect the forward area of defense at the distant approaches to the national borders, there is no way Russia could retreat with Damascus and Moscow behind it.

slavnov24rAttack against Russian Sukhoi-24 was not accidental, says retired general / by Tamara Zamyatina / TASS / November 24, 2015 / MOSCOW / Russia’s Sukhoi Su-24 frontline bomber participating in the Russian air group’s operation against the Islamic State (outlawed in Russia) in Syria has caused no damage to Turkey’s ground infrastructures and it could have by no means pursued such aims, so the attack against it was a deliberate show of muscle, Major General Alexander Tsalko, retired, a member of the non-governmental Foreign and Defense Policy Council, told TASS. Tsalko, a former military pilot himself, said Turkey was perfectly aware that Russia’s air and space group was focused on the ground targets of the Islamic State in Syria and could by no means seek to cause damage to Turkey, Moscow’s old-time trading and economic ally. “Question number one is what weapon was used to shoot down Russia’s Sukhoi-24 – an air-to-air missile launched from a Turkish fighter or a ground air defense complex. In contrast to the equipment of a ground air defense complex the fighter plane’s screen does not show the state border line clearly enough. Did the Turkish pilot really see that the Russian plane had violated Turkish air space or not? He should’ve received clear instructions from the ground,” Tsalko said. “At this point it is too early to judge. The Russian Defense Ministry will now study the data from the radars on board the Russian cruiser The Moskva in the Mediterranean and from ground radars to see when exactly the attack against the Sukhoi-24 plane took place. One thing is clear – the attack was not accidental,” Tsalko said.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan (--Sputnik)

Recep Tayyip Erdogan (–Sputnik)

Would Turkey Act Without US Permission? – Daniel McAdams / Sputnik / November 24, 2015 / The shooting down of a Russian bomber by Turkish aircraft shocked the Kremlin. But in an interview with Sputnik, Daniel McAdams, executive director of the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity, describes what effect the incident will have on the world stage. Speaking to Sputnik, Daniel McAdams of the Ron Paul Institute gives his impressions of the downing of a Russian bomber over Syria. “This is very serious,” he said. In part, Turkey’s attack on a Russian plane targeting the self-proclaimed Islamic State terrorist group has highlighted Ankara’s own role of fomenting those radical groups. “…Turkey has allowed itself to become a super-hotbed for ISIS and other jihadists to go back and forth from Syria into Turkey. We have pretty good evidence that ISIS and other extremists have been resupplied infinitely, possibly with weapons from Libya, another great US success story – and they have been striking inside Syria with that,” McAdams said. “So, certainly if you want criminal activity, Turkey is an accomplice to the crime at the very least.” McAdams also [expresses] his own thoughts on why the Turkish government would risk such provocative action. “One question is would [Turkish President] Erdogan do this without US permission, without US support…” he asks. “Even if this Russian jet wandered into Syrian airspace…how is it that the Turkish F-16s scrambled, met their target and [took] out their target in a matter of seconds, and how is it that the Russian plane crashed in Syria itself?” In light of the strong reaction from the Kremlin, McAdams also sees NATO backing away from potential conflict. “I find it interesting that the NATO General Jens Stoltenberg all of a sudden toned his rhetoric down about 12 notches. I think he realizes that things have just gotten real,” he said. “He’s clearly eager to not make this a Russia-NATO conflict, because the implications for that are tremendous.” The downing of the bomber will also likely end any further discussion of implementing a “safe zone” along the Turkey-Syria border. “The US and Turks have been trying to set this up for a long time. I think that is over.” The reports of so-called “moderate” rebel groups shooting at the pilots as they drifted in parachutes toward the ground – an act which many would consider a war crime – also highlight the problems of Western strategies in supporting those groups. “…The whole idea that these people are moderates is insane,” McAdams said. “Just this week, the US was considering inviting al-Qaeda’s affiliate Ahrar ash-Sham to attend the talks, as well. So, 14 years after al-Qaeda attacked the US on 9/11, the US is talking about bringing an al-Qaeda affiliate in as a moderate opposition in Syria.” Given Turkey’s place in NATO, many have already predicted that one of the most significant effects of the incident may be the thaw in relations between Russia and the West – a relationship that was showing signs of warming following the terrorist attacks in Paris and the bombing of Metrojet flight 9268. But as McAdams points out, the United States had remained resistant to cooperation with Russia even before Tuesday’s events. “…The US is definitely in a bind because Russia was seen as the only effective force that was fighting ISIS. The US had a year and had very, very little effect on ISIS, and yet after a month everyone in the world has seen the damage that Russia did.”

Hakan Fidan (--Fort Russ)

Hakan Fidan (–Fort Russ)

Turkish intelligence chief: ISIS is a reality and we must stop Putin from crushing the Islamic revolution / Fort Russ / october 18, 2015, reposted November 24, 2015 / Turkish intelligence chief: Putin’s intervention in Syria is against Islam and international law, ISIS is a reality and we are optimistic about the future. / Ankara / Hakan Fidan, the head of Turkey’s National Intelligence Organization, known by the MİT acronym, has drawn a lot of attention and criticism for his controversial comments about ISIS. Mr. Hakan Fidan, Turkish President’s staunchest ally, condemned Russian military intervention in Syria, accusing Moscow of trying to ‘smother’ Syria’s Islamist revolution and serious breach of United Nations law. “ISIS is a reality and we have to accept that we cannot eradicate a well-organized and popular establishment such as the Islamic State; therefore I urge my western colleagues to revise their mindset about Islamic political currents, put aside their cynical mentalité and thwart Vladimir Putin’s plans to crush Syrian Islamist revolutionaries,” – Anadolu News Agency quoted Mr. Fidan as saying on Sunday. Fidan further added that in order to deal with the vast number of foreign Jihadists craving to travel to Syria, it is imperative that ISIS must set up a consulate or at least a political office in Istanbul. He underlined that it is Turkey’s . . . MORE>> Click here.

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Sunday, November 22, 2015
(Updated throughout the day)

slavnov22wCrimea blackout: unidentified persons blow up electricity towers; state of emergency declared / Translated for Fort Russ by J. Arnoldski / Fort Russ / November 22, 2015 / Authorities of the Republic of Crimea have adopted a decision on the imposition of a state of emergency following the blackout on the peninsula. As was reported earlier, unidentified persons blew up remaining energy transmission poles which supplied electricity to Crimea. According to the latest information, electricity has been partially restored in Simferopol. The head of Crimea’s Ministry for Emergency Situations information department, Vladimir Ivanov, reported to RIA Novosti that “A state of emergency has been introduced in connection with the total termination of Crimea’s electric power supply from Ukraine.” Earlier, information appeared that unidentified persons blew up two power transmission towers which powered Crimea’s electricity. Residential areas of the republic have experienced a total blackout. “Important infrastructural and social facilities in Crimea are being connected to emergency power supplies. In particular, we are talking about social facilities such as the operating facilities of hospitals,” Ivanov said. According to him, generators will allow a partial supply of power to some areas of Crimea, particularly in Simferopol, where there are mobile connections. We recall that the first two electricity towers which supplied energy to the peninsula were blown up by unknown persons on November 20. Later, the Ministry of Energy of the Russian Federation reported that Ukraine has promised to restore damaged lines. Also, in connection with the situation, operational headquarters for supplying electricity to Crimea have been created in Russia. Quemado Institute comments: This was an obvious vulnerability. Why didn’t Russia start building power lines to Crimea in April 2014?

Russia ceases coal deliveries to Ukraine in response to Crimea blackout / Fort Russ / November 22, 2015 / Russia has ceased coal shipments to Ukraine in response to the restriction of the electricity supply to Crimea. This was stated by deputy of the Verkhovna Rada, Mustafa Dzemilev, after a meeting with Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko. “I will tell you honestly – and I spoke about this with the president – that a very difficult situation has developed. In connection with the termination of electricity, now Russia has stopped deliveries of anthracite, which means that seven power stations in Ukraine will cease work,” Dzhemilev said. On November 22, Crimea experienced a total blackout as a result of the ceasing of the power supply from Ukraine. A state of emergency has been declared on the peninsula. Earlier on Sunday, the head of Ukraine’s Ministry of Internal Affairs department on combatting drug-related crimes, Ilya Kiva, reported the explosion of electricity transmission poles which supplied Crimea. A supporter of the unrecognized [by Russia] Crimean-Tatar Mejilis, Osman Pashaev, stated that this was caused by the damage to the first two transmitters.

slavnov22tUkrenergo: accident at the power lines feeding the Crimea dangerous for the NPP in Ukraine / Novorossia Information Agency / Autotranslation / November 22, 2015 / Damage to the power line poles in the Kherson region, which feed the Crimea and southern regions of Ukraine, dangerous for Ukrainian nuclear power plants. This was at the briefing said the first deputy director of “Ukrenergo” Yuri Kasich. “All of these events have led to the need for shedding of nuclear power plants in Ukraine to 500 MW. It Zaporizhzhya NPP and South-Ukrainian. I note that such emergency unloading of nuclear power – it is very dangerous, “- he said. Kasich also said that the damage to power lines that feed the Crimea, could lead to new power outage in consumers in Kherson and Mykolaiv regions. According to him, off another item on the substation “Kakhovskaya” can lead to a cascade of the accident. Electricity is supplied to the Crimea on the four high-voltage power lines: Melitopol – Dzhankoy, Kakhovskaya – Dzhankoy, Kakhovskaya – Ostrovsky, Kakhovka – Titan. On Friday, in the Kherson region have been undermined by an electricity pylon, which deliver light to the Crimea and southern regions of Ukraine. On the same day it became known that two of the four lines were de-energized, on Sunday night and the remaining two transmission lines are out of order. As a result, almost the entire peninsula was de-energized. In addition to the repair crews arrived to Crimea blockade activists who want to prevent the resumption of full deliveries of electricity to the peninsula.

slavnov22vThe Crimean Energy Blockade: What You Need to Know / Sputnik News / November 22, 2015 / On Saturday, Ukrainian police said that power lines in southern Ukraine supplying the Crimean peninsula with electricity were blown up by activists from the group which launched the unsuccessful, Kiev-sanctioned ‘food blockade’ of the peninsula in September. Sputnik brings you up to speed on the energy blockade and its potential consequences. On Friday night, two of the four electricity transmission lines in the southern Ukrainian region of Kherson supplying power to Crimea were destroyed, with the remaining two blown up on Saturday night. As a result, beginning Saturday, 1.9 million of the peninsula’s 2.3 million residents were left without power, with authorities introducing a state of emergency. Over 100 brigades armed with over 500 diesel generators have been dispatched to ensure the provision of power to socially important facilities, with authorities setting up an emergency schedule for the supply of electricity and water to areas hit by the outage. Energy-saving measures include shutting off street lights and limiting the operation of entertainment venues until 10 o’clock at night. Schools and businesses will also be closed Monday to save on electricity, a statement published on the Crimean government’s website reads. Officials from Ukraine’s state energy company Ukrenergo initially announced that they would try to repair the lines within 3-4 days. However, repair crews arriving to repair the lines have since been met by activists attempting to prevent them from carrying out their work. Ukrenergo press secretary Zinovy Butso told 112 Ukraina TV channel that the activists would not allow the workers to get down to work “in the coming days.” The ‘activists’, believed to be from the same group which unsuccessfully sought to create a food blockade of the peninsula in September, appear to have shifted tactics, and are now looking to prevent the resumption of energy deliveries to the peninsula. Ukraine’s Ministry of Internal Affairs has since opened four criminal cases in connection with the destruction of the power lines, a police spokesman in the Kherson Region explaining that the charges include one count of a deliberate attempt to damage power facilities, two of causing bodily harm to the police, and a fourth count for deliberately obstructing the work of local journalists. Officials from Ukrenergo had earlier told reporters that a single 330 kW line could be restored in one day, capable of delivering 500-550 megawatts to the peninsula, thus ensuring a minimum level of power. A second line, according to the company, could be restored within 2-4 days. Now things appear to depend on the protesters blocking engineers from fixing the lines. At the moment, the Crimean peninsula relies on four major power lines from Ukraine for much of its electricity. These include the Melitopol-Dzhankoy line (330 kW), the Kakhovskaya-Dzhankoy line (300kW), the Kakhovskaya-Ostrovskaya line (330 kW) and the Kakhovka-Titan line (220 kW). Ukrenergo emphasized that the downing of the lines to Crimea have affected the supply of power to Ukraine’s own southern regions, including Kherson and Mykolaiv. The situation is apparently so bad, Ukrenergo Deputy Director General Yuri Kasich said Sunday, that the shutdown of just one more element at the Kakhovskaya substation could have a “cascade effect,” leaving up to half of the Kherson and Mykolaiv regions without power. “I want to emphasize that the unified energy system of Ukraine is constructed in such a way that it is impossible to separate individual areas, regions or localities, and that, accordingly, any failure in the energy network, in the west or the east, can be connected,” affecting the rest of the system, Kasich noted, speaking to reporters. Meanwhile, Ukrainian energy officials have formally rejected offers for assistance from the Russian energy ministry, assuring their colleagues that the situation was under control, a source in the Russian energy ministry told RIA Novosti. Speaking to reporters on the consequences of Kiev’s apparent inability to keep its power transmission lines linked to Crimea secure, Prime Minister Sergei Aksyonov noted that if Ukrainian energy companies really “believe that they do not need our market, they will lose it forever, the same as happened with food,” RIA Novosti reports. The prime minister emphasized that the present situation has only accentuated the importance of the energy bridge being built to Crimea from the Krasnodar Region, set to come online later this year. The bridge will effectively end the peninsula’s energy isolation, connecting it to the country’s united energy network. For his part, Sevastopol Governor Sergei Menyailo urged city residents to remain calm, while promising that authorities would control electricity prices for the duration of the emergency. He added that he understood perfectly well that “if a normal situation existed in the [country] from which we were cut off, such an emergency could be dealt with in a day or two.” Sevastopol’s own cogeneration plant and two mobile stations have been providing the city with electricity at 40% of its total need, with supplies directed first and foremost to social facilities, critical infrastructure, as well as heat and light to the city, its water supply and other utility networks. Franz Klintsevich, Russian senator and First Deputy Chairmen of the Committee on Defense and Security, offered a much harsher assessment of the situation, suggesting that this artificial blackout of Crimea is an act of terrorism, and a demonstration that Kiev authorities are either incapable of controlling the situation, or on the contrary, have provoked it themselves. “It was not a secret to anyone that Ukrainian nationalists would not limit themselves to a food blockade, and that they would try to supplement their effort with an energy blockade. In fact, they had repeatedly stated as much themselves,” Klintsevich noted. The senator added that “the blasts blowing up the power lines in the Kherson region near the border with Crimea have left virtually the entire peninsula without power. This is an act of terrorism.” Unfortunately, the politician suggested that a real search for the culprits should not be expected from Ukrainian authorities. Meanwhile, Crimean Prosecutor Natalya Poklonskaya suggested that Russian authorities could launch a criminal case in connection with the downed power lines, pending an interagency meeting of security officials to be held Monday. Back in September, following rhetoric from the blockade activists that they would cut off electricity supplies, Crimean First Deputy Prime Minister Mikhail Sheremet said that such a blockade would trigger retaliatory measures for Ukraine. Most, if not all of the electricity delivered to Crimea through Ukraine comes from Russia, with Ukrainian territory used as a transit point. [Tweets, photos, additional articles available at source.]

slavnov22uUncontrolled Ukrainian fighters started violating the ceasefire regime on a new scale / Novorossia Today / November 23, 2015 / Ukrainian fighters violated the ceasefire 14 times for the last 24 hours. They shelled the Donetsk People’s Republic with the use of different types of armament. It was reported to DAN by the Defence Ministry. ‘The situation in the DPR has aggravation tendency. Ukrainian criminals violated the ceasefire 14 times’, it was announced in the Defence Ministry on 22ns November in the morning. In regard to the date of the Defence Department, village Staromihaylovka occurred at the fire, close to it Petrovskiy district was also subjected to fire. Airport territory and joint to it villages as Spartak, Zhabun’ki were targeted by Ukrainian nationalistic battalions. Areas of Gorlovka were also shelled. Ukrainian forces used artillery, mortars, infantry combat vehicles and small arms’. The military information is being updated, due to the preliminary information is know that Petrovskiy district, village Alexandrovka, Spartak were shelled by Kiev fighters during the day on 22nd November.

Pete John on Twitter
DONBASS WAR NEWS
November 22, 2015 19:00 UTC
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slavnov22sRenewed Military Escalation? Sizeable Ukraine Troop Movements Near Border with Novorossiya / Global Research / November 22, 2015 / After several weeks of apparent troop withdrawals and drawdowns, there are once again ominous military developments in Ukraine which might herald either preparations for a renewed saber-rattling to draw attention back to Ukraine following the Paris terror attacks which have led to the intensification of the Russian air campaign against ISIS and prompted the French president Hollande to seek to improve his country’s relations with Russia. This situation gives Poroshenko a considerable incentive to attempt to escalate the conflict in order to prevent a Franco-Russian improvement in relations. There are reports that Ukraine will ban males 45 years old and younger from leaving Ukraine starting in January 1, 2016 in preparation for the 7th wave of mobilization. There are also reports that Ukraine is no longer releasing individuals mobilized under previous waves of mobilization whose term of service has expired. Likewise contract soldiers who have been signed up for 6-month terms of service are not being released from service. The atmosphere of war hysteria is being kept up by Ukrainian officials with Aleksandr Turchinov in the lead are claiming that Ukraine’s top 2016 priority will be its air defenses, due to the demonstrated Russian air capabilities over Syria. The UAF has stepped up demonstrative operations near the border with Russia in the Crimea, ostensibly to “rehearse defending the border against Russian invasion”. There are also reports of sizable Ukrainian troop movements near the border with Novorossia, which raises the possibility the earlier troop withdrawals were simply part of a major regrouping of UAF forces, possibly in preparation for a renewed offensive. Ukraine has also taken receipt of two US Firefinder counter-battery radars, which were delivered to Lvov. US instructors have begun training Ukrainian soldiers in their operation. Still, would the junta really want to risk an escalation under these conditions? UAF units’ morale remains at rock bottom, with most of their casualties coming from “non-combat” incidents which are usually alcohol and even drug-related, like the recent deaths of four mechanized brigade soldiers who have just returned from a training exercise and were killed in a drunken shoot-out. Ukraine’s defense industry is continuing its downward spiral, with the Motor Sich, a key engine manufacturer, being reduced to making…meatgrinders. Which is a curious metaphor for the current state of Ukraine… However, whether or not Ukraine decides to start another round of fighting, one thing is certain: Russia Is Watching. [Original source: South Front]

VIDEO: VPE Special, Donetsk – “Save the peace!” (English subtitles) / LiveLeak / November 22, 2015 / [An on-site interview with a local resident who survived the shelling last January and February, though her next door neighbor died. Her cat was in the house during the shelling, but lived because it was hidden. She urges the world to maintain the peace in Donbass, and to not start the war again, as the people will suffer. For video, click here. –Quemado Institute editor]

Wolfgang Gehrcke, Andrej Hunko (--DAN)

Wolfgang Gehrcke, Andrej Hunko near Donetsk (–DAN)

Kiev Blasts German Legislators for Donbass Humanitarian Mission / Sputnik / November 22, 2015 / German legislators are under fire from Ukraine’s government after visiting the country’s war-stricken Donbass region to deliver humanitarian aid to a children’s hospital. Legislators from Germany’s parliament said that they were shocked after visiting the town of Gorlovka in Ukraine’s war-stricken Donbass region. The legislators visited the town of Gorlovka, said to have been pounded by Ukrainian artillery for months in its war against local independence supporters. They brought humanitarian aid for the Gorlovka children’s hospital and talked to officials of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic. “I have not seen images like that before my eyes before. After visiting these places, I can barely sleep at night,” legislator Andrej Hunko said. The legislators initially attempted to send a humanitarian aid mission to the region through Kiev, but were forced to enter through Russia after Ukraine’s government refused them entry. Ukraine’s government condemned the German legislators’ visit, calling it a “deliberate act of disrespect to the Ukrainian state.” “I did not think that war would come to Europe. It is not needed, it must be stopped. After returning home, we will demand that Germany assists in every possible way in bringing about an end to this war, as well as develops relations with Russia,” legislator Wolfgang Gehrcke said. Hunko told Germany’s Die Welt newspaper that he attempted to organize the humanitarian mission in cooperation with the Ukrainian government, but his requests were denied.

Petro Poroshenko (--Fort Russ)

Petro Poroshenko (–Fort Russ)

Do you really want Donbass back? Ukraine violates 1st, 5th, 6th, 8th, and 11th Minsk points / Translated for Fort Russ by J. Arnoldski / Fort Russ / November 22, 2015 / “Why are the Minsk Agreements not working?” Why do relations between to people come to a standstill? Practical psychology shows that any misunderstanding can be solved if such is desired. But if a desire to listen to one another is absent, then it is impossible to establish normal dialogue and relationships disintegrate. Oddly enough, the rules of inter-human interaction, with minimal amendments, can be applied to relations between states. Not long ago, a well-known Ukrainian volunteer, Aleskey Mochanov, visited Donetsk. This visit, it must be said, contributed more than a little to “opening his eyes.” Aleksey Mochanov discovered that Donbass is not home to Buryat militants, but ordinary people for whom Donbass is home and who have already lived under UAF shelling for more than a year. He also discovered that people don’t want to have anything to do with the current Ukrainian government. Mochanov has now put a very interesting question before Ukrainian society. He writes: “I have a serious question for everyone: when everyone among us says that we want to return Donbass and see it as part of Ukraine, what do you have in mind? Return the people of Donbass? Or return the territory? This, after all, is not the same thing. Judging by writers and commentators, the people of Donbass are liked and needed by few. No one believes that they will become Ukrainians in light . . . MORE>> Click here.

slavnov22y“I fled to the Crimea because I didn’t want to fight” / Translated by Alexander Fedotov / Edited by @GBabeuf / Slavyangrad / November 22, 2015 / Another fugitive from the Ukrainian Army reported that there are more and more rumours in military units of the UAF about an imminent resumption of large-scale military action against the Donbass republics. The staff of the Crimean Border Guard service detained a soldier of the 28th Mechanised Brigade of Nikolayev near the Perekop checkpoint. The colourful character could barely stand on his feet, and was covered in cuts and bruises. In addition, he reeked of alcohol. “Dressed in Ukrainian Army camouflage, the detainee had no documents proving his identity. He was in a state of alcoholic intoxication, and had multiple bruises on his face,” the border guards said. “The soldier explained his decision to desert by the fact that he does not wish to participate in the armed conflict in the Donbass. Allegedly, he said as much to his company commander, after which he was beaten by the officer of the brigade.” The fugitive said that he voluntarily left the unit on November 2, when preparations . . . MORE>> Click here.

slavnov22zThe one “tragic flaw” of the Donbass uprising–the first national uprising against the oligarchic counter-revolution, which has been raging in the East for more than 30 years / Vladimir Suchan / Logos Politicos / November 12 2015 / El Murid shared on his blog and FB page an excerpt from his forthcoming book. His main thesis is that, in reaction and response to the seizure of power and regime change in Ukraine, which brought together Western geopolitics, its long strategy, oligarchs and fascism, the south-east of Ukraine spontaneously attempted a people’s uprising and revolution (hence also the otherwise seemingly oddly named “people’s republics”). However, this uprising was or is now defeated, El Murid observes and then lists or singles out the following reasons or causes of this first major anti-liberal and anti-oligarchic people’s uprising in Russia and in the whole former East (October of 1993 in Moscow was more of a coup and anti-coup struggle than any broader uprising): 1. the lack of formulated, clear political goals, programs, and strategy; 2. to this, I would add, also the lack of any proper political organization of the uprising (the role of Boroday was to make sure that none of this would happen in the first place; and speaking of the post-perestroika . . . MORE>> Click here.

slavnov22rGraham Phillips Exclusive: Mikael Skillt Interview / The Truthspeaker / November 22, 2015 / Mikael Skillt, he likely needs no introduction. Do a google. Interview conducted just a few minutes ago via Twitter. GP: You told me you were contacted by someone I knew in Odessa who gave you my home address there, clearly wanting you to do something with it. Given that we are ‘on different sides’, why haven’t you? MS: Im no assassin, so if someone wants you dead, he/she can pull the trigger. GP: You’ve left Azov – what’s the story there? MS: Im going into politics and Azov is growing and doing well even without me. But if there is war . . . MORE>> Click here.

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slavnov22kUkrainian nationalist leader: “ISIS is our ally in the struggle against Russia” / Novorossia Today / November 21, 2015 / A Ukrainian nationalist, leader of the “Brotherhood,” Dmitry Korchinsky proposed to offer asylum to ISIS terrorists in Kiev, the former head of UNA-UNSO [Ukrainian National Assembly – Ukrainian People’s Self-defense] wrote on his social network page. According to Korchinsky, SSU (Security Service of Ukraine) must see ISIS as “allies in the struggle with Russia.” “At the G20 summit leaders of Western countries were talking to the Moscow terrorist, like he’s a human, asking him to bomb ISIS positions. That is, their attitude towards the terrorists is pragmatic. Ukrainian security services also has to be pragmatic, and therefore, effective. It is not our business to arrest the enemies of Moscow – Islamists. We should only ask them to shoot accurately at Moscow’s terrorists in the Caucasus and in Syria. Unfortunately, security service sometimes arrests or deports recruiters-Caucasians who come from Syria to Moscovia [Russia] for their association with ISIS. It is not wise. Why should Ukraine quarrel with Islam? Mrs. Gitlyanskaya, the press secretary of the USS (Security Service of Ukraine) regularly reports about the progress of the SBU in the fight against “terrorist organization Al-Nusra Front”, instead of targeting Moscow agents. Why should Ukraine worry about the revolution of the poor in the Islamic World? Why should we pick a side of the barricades? At the moment, the oppressed peoples of the former Soviet Empire, and the proletarian peoples of the Near and Middle East are our only viable allies in the war against Moscow imperialism. We must act in accordance with our own interests. “Anyone who fights for the liberation of his people from the imperialist yoke of Moscow should have the right to asylum in Kiev,” – said Korchinskiy.

G20, Turkey, Nov 16, 2015 (--astroawani.com)

G20, Antalya Turkey, Nov 16, 2015 (–astroawani.com)

Western leaders agreed to extend Russia sanctions by six months / Novorossia Today / November 23, 2015 / Western leaders who met on the margins of last week’s Group of 20 summit in Turkey agreed to extend sanctions imposed on Russia for its intervention in Ukraine by six months until July of next year, a senior European diplomat told Reuters. The decision was taken despite mounting calls to cooperate more closely with Russian President Vladimir Putin in the fight against Islamic State following the militant group’s November 13 attacks in Paris which killed 130 people, Reuters wrote. U.S. President Barack Obama, Germany’s Angela Merkel, Britain’s David Cameron, Italy’s Matteo Renzi and French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius, who represented President Francois Hollande at the summit, attended the brief meeting near the conclusion of the G20 meeting in Antalya. The sanctions are due to expire in January, before full implementation of the so-called Minsk peace deal, which aims to resolve the standoff between Kiev and pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine. Western countries have said all elements of Minsk need to be fulfilled before they can consider easing the sanctions. In particular, the diplomat said, the leaders had concluded that it was important to maintain pressure on Russia ahead of planned elections in Donbass. “The elections in Ukraine are heavy lifting,” the diplomat said, requesting anonymity because the agreement in Antalya was confidential. “We only have a chance to get what we want if we play the sanctions card. Financial sanctions need to stay in place until the bitter end,” the diplomat added.

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Donetsk International Festival
“World Ballet Stars”
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Saturday, November 21, 2015

EU Headquarters in Brussels (--ricksteves.com)

EU Headquarters, Brussels:(–ricksteves.com)

Poroshenko says all EU parliaments have ratified agreement on association with Ukraine / TASS / November 21, 2015 / KIEV / Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko said on Friday parliaments of all European Union member states have completed the process of ratification of the association agreement with Ukraine. “The Brussels [Belgian – TASS] parliament has ratified the association agreement with Ukraine. Now association with us has been ratified by all states,” he wrote on his Twitter account. The association agreement was to be ratified by all the 28 member states of the European Union to have it come into force from January 1, 2016. In October 2015, the document was ratified by Cyprus’ parliament, and in November – by the Greek parliament. Meanwhile, the Netherlands plans to hold a consultative referendum on the European Union’s association agreement with Ukraine on April 6, 2016, despite the fact that its parliament has already ratified the agreement. In March 2014, Ukraine signed a political section of the association agreement with the European Union. The economic section was signed in June 2014. At a meeting in Brussels on September 12, 2014, Russia, Ukraine and the European Union agreed to postpone the establishment of a free trade zone between Ukraine and the European Union and keep in place the free trade regime within the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) till December 31, 2015. A number of Ukrainian goods was granted a tax-free access to the European market whereas Europe’s exports to Ukraine were still subject to taxation for that period.

Alexander Lukashevic, traitor to Donbass (--planobrazil.com)

Alexander Lukashevic, Russian OSCE amabassador, traitor to Donbass (–planobrazil)

Russia points to need to influence Kiev to restore truce — foreign ministry / TASS / November 20, 2015 / MOSCOW / Moscow calls on all those interested in the stabilization of the situation in Ukraine to exert pressure on the authorities in Kiev to restore the truce, Russia’s Ambassador to the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) Alexander Lukashevich told a meeting of the organization’s standing committee. The text of his speech has been posted on the website of the Russian Foreign Ministry on Friday. “We urge everyone who is interested in the stabilization of the situation in Ukraine to exert the necessary pressure on the Kiev authorities so that the truce achieved through great effort is restored and the political process develops further,” the diplomat said. “We hope that meetings of the Contact Group and its subgroups held in Minsk the other day will help bring the situation back into the de-escalation mainstream,” he said. “We fully support the call for the immediate cessation of all actions incompatible with the existing agreements and efforts to reach a peaceful settlement of the conflict within the framework of the Minsk process.” Lukashevich also noted that Moscow supported the work of the Contact Group and its subgroups. “We hope that the negotiations on drafting a law on local elections in Donbas will acquire the necessary dynamics,” he said. “Apparently — and this is evident from the recent report of the ODIHR [Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights] monitoring mission — the existing Ukrainian election legislation is not the best basis for holding elections in compliance with the relevant OSCE standards, as envisaged by the Package of Measures.” According to the diplomat, the election legislation in Ukraine needs to be improved. It is also necessary to coordinate with the Donetsk and Luhansk republics the timeframes for elections and enshrine them in law.

Lagarde, Putin: accomplices to murder (--Mikhail Klimentyev/TASS

Christine Lagarde, Vladimir Putin(–Mikhail Klimentyev/Presidential Press Service TASS)

Moscow’s offer to restructure Ukraine’s $3 bln debt means only start of uneasy talks / TASS / November 17, 2015 / Russia’s offer to restructure Ukraine’s $3 billion debt maturing in December and accept repayments over the next three years is just the beginning of difficult talks with an uncertain outcome, experts say. In any case, it is obvious that Ukraine won’t be able to repay the debt on its own and the only question is whether international lenders would want to shoulder responsibility in this situation. Russia has offered Ukraine to repay its $3 billion debt by $1 billion annual installments in 2016-2018 against the guarantees of the United States, the European Union or a reputable creditor, President Vladimir Putin said after his talks with IMF Head Christine Lagarde on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Turkey on Sunday. “We have not only agreed to restructure the Ukrainian debt but we have offered better terms than the International Monetary Fund asked,” the Russian president said. As an alternative option, the IMF intended to discuss amending its lending rules in late November to allow Ukraine to get the Fund’s next loan tranche, even if Kiev defaulted on its sovereign bonds sold to Russia. However, experts said this move could have created a precedent for countries that were earlier denied IMF loans due to their overdue liabilities. . . . MORE>> Click here.

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Donetsk Lugansk News Sep 17-20 2015

[DPR Election news: please scroll to September 19.]

Sunday September 20, 2015

South Ossetian President Tibilov Meets Zakharchenko and Plotnitsky / Integrative*Mind / Autotranslation with minor editing / September 20, 2015 / Zakharchenko and Plotnitsky Attend Ceremony for 25th Anniversary of Republic of South Ossetia. / Leonid Tibilov, president of the Republic of South-Ossetia, met with Prime Minister of the Lugansk People’s Republic Igor Plotnitsky and Prime Minister of the Donetsk People’s Republic, Alexander Zakharchenko. Leonid Tibilov said at the ceremony, which included a number of guests, “I express my deep gratitude to everyone who supported us, showed compassion and solidarity with the people of South Ossetia.” President Leonid Tibilov took part in the ceremonial meeting of public representatives of the Republic of South Ossetia, “I praise my Motherland!” dedicated to the celebration of the 25th anniversary of the Republic of South Ossetia. The event was also attended by members of the Government, MPs, and many guests of the republic. [Autotranslation:] President Leonid Tibilov met the Head of the People’s Republic of Donetsk Alexander Zakharchenko, who arrived in Tskhinvali to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Republic of South Ossetia. The meeting was also attended by the Chairman of the Parliament of South Ossetia Anatoly Bibilov, head of the Presidential Administration of South Ossetia Alan Dzhioev, Minister of Foreign Affairs of South Ossetia Kazbulat Tskhovrebov. The head of the South Ossetian State welcomed the guests and expressed gratitude for participating in the festivities. He noted that the people of South Ossetia was the same path that the people of Donetsk People’s Republic and said that the South Ossetian leadership will continue to work . . . MORE>> Click here. [Photo gallery available at source.]

Alexander Zakharchenko, Tskhinvali (--presidentruo.org)

Alexander Zakharchenko, Tskhinvali (–presidentruo.org)

Zakharchenko: The DPR will develop relations with South Ossetia / DONi News Agency / September 20, 2015 / Tskhinvali / The Donetsk People’s Republic intends to develop and strengthen relations with South Ossetia – the DPR’s leader Alexandr Zakharchenko who had arrived in Tskhinvali to celebrate the Day of Republic said. Zakharchenko emphasized that he considered it his duty to come and “congratulate the fraternal people of South Ossetia on the 25th anniversary of their republic.” “This is the only country which has recognized our independence, which has sent us its volunteers. People of South Ossetia are close to us in spirit. We consider them to be our brothers also because they have gained their independence in the fighting,” he said.

(--cbsnews.com)

(–cbsnews.com)

Ukraine Government Truce Violations: Artillery, Tanks / Novorossiya News / September 20, 2015 / “The situation has escalated hard in Donetsk… Ukrainian forces have renewed usage of heavy calibre artillery and battle tanks at the contact line. Last night, Donetsk outskirts and Donetsk airport came under heavy Ukrainian artillery fire from the directions of Avdeevka and Spartak. Separately, the settlement of Staromihailovka was shelled by Ukrainian battle tanks and artillery. Reportedly, Ukrainian armed forces provoke Lungask Armed Forces moving battle tanks closely to the contact line. Yesterday, the movement of Ukrainian military equipment was observed at the sector of Lopaskino where Ukrainian battle tank took a fire position in 300 meters from the contact line. The movement of Ukrainian battle tanks and armored vehicles was observed at the sector of Novotoshskoe. Also, an Ukrainian military column including heavy caliber artillery was observed at the sector of Novodar. 3 battle tanks, 3 jeeps and a few of armored personnel carriers were observed at Muratovo. The movement of 12 armored personnel carriers with Ukrainian troops was fixed from the settlement of Schastie to the North-West. The situation is escalating.” (Courtesy of South Front.)

Eduard Basurin (--02varvara.wordpress.com)

Eduard Basurin (–02varvara.wordpress.com)

Conflict of Militant Nationalists and UAF Caused Four-Hour Battle in Avdeevka – Intelligence / DAN / Edited autotranslation / September 20, 2015 / DONETSK / Intelligence of the Donetsk People’s Republic recorded a long clash between militants and nationalist divisions of regular troops in the Ukrainian city of Avdeevka north of Donetsk. This was stated by deputy commander of the DPR Ministry of Defense Corps Eduard Basurin. “According to our intelligence, yesterday an uncontrollable gang of Ukrainian Nationalists, being intoxicated, began to sort things out with the UAF [Ukrainian Armed Forces] military, resulting in a four-hour battle in the precincts of the village Avdeevka,” said the corps representative. He noted that, in connection with the incident, the Ukrainian position opened fire on the village of Spartak in the Yasinovatskiy area. “Trying to hide traces of the crime and blame the armed forces of the Republic in an attempt to advance, Ukrainian criminals opened fire from mortars and anti-aircraft guns on the locality Spartak,” said Eduard Basurin. In addition, he said, the Ukrainian security forces continue to enjoy the calm at the front for the [placement] of military equipment, including those banned by the Minsk Agreement. “So, DPR intelligence Sun recorded in the north-eastern outskirts of the Trinity, 8 km from the demarcation line, the location of firing positions of four units of MLRS BM-21 ‘Grad’,” said the representative of the Ministry of Defense.

Denis Pushilin (-- Sputnik/ Vitaliy Belousov)

Denis Pushilin (– Sputnik/ Vitaliy Belousov)

International Observers Agree to Attend Local Elections in Donetsk / Sputnik / September 20, 2015 / Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) negotiator Denis Pushilin said that the list of observers, set to monitor the elections in the DPR, will be announced soon. / GORLOVKA / A number of international observers have agreed to attend local elections in the eastern Ukrainian self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR), while participation of representatives from the Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) remains an open question, DPR negotiator at reconciliation talks Denis Pushilin said Sunday. “Regarding the ODIHR, the question remains open. They do not intend to participate as observers, while a number of other international observers have already given their consent,” Pushilin told journalists. A list of observers, who will monitor the election process, is set to be announced later, the negotiator added. The Ukrainian government does not recognize the DPR along with the Lugansk People’s Republic that voted for independence in May 2014, and Kiev has stated it would never formally recognize local election results. Ukraine is expected to hold parliamentary elections on October 25. But Donetsk and Lugansk breakaway regions plan to hold local own elections, on October 18 and November 1 respectively. Related article: The DPR can feel the Ukrainian pressure because of the local elections – Pushilin / DONi News Agency / September 20, 2015 / According to the People’s Council of the DPR Denis Pushilin, despite the holding the local elections in Donbass there are questions needed to be discussed in the Minsk format. “The elections question will be touched and we expect some pressure from the Kiev’s side. We know how to defend our arguments and we continue to follow the Minsk agreements. Unfortunately, it is done only by our side”, — mr. Pushilin said. He also added that the DPR is willing to sign the document concerning the withdrawing of the armament with calibre less than 100 mm.

Media: Putin, Poroshenko Agree to Complete Cessation of Fighting in Donbass / Rossiski Dialog / Edited autotranslation / September 20, 2015 / UKRAINE / The Ukrainian media have started talking about the fact that the conflict in southeast Ukraine will be completed in the near future. On Sunday, September 20, some publications have reported that the presidents of Russia and Ukraine Vladimir Putin and Petro Poroshenko agreed that the fighting in Donbass will be stopped in the near future. This means that Poroshenko will soon announce the termination of the ATO [“Anti-terrorist Operation” or war on Donbass — QI editor]. According to sources, after the statement by Poroshenko, it will be Putin’s turn to make a move. The Russian president intends to send all the forces of the country to Syria and Iraq, said the Ukrainian media. It is noted that such a scenario would rearrange all aspects of the conflict in the Donbass region, since it would gradually divert world attention from the events in Ukraine. According to a source, now the world media is focused on the events in Syria and Iraq. Russia will focus on the Syrian issue. Poroshenko gets no rest from the fight against the opposition, which has recently increased. As a result, the conflict in the Donbas will be frozen for several years. Quemado Institute comments: We post this unconfirmed possible rumor as a curiosity. The sources, apparently Ukrainian, seem to assume Russian forces are currently fighting in Donbass. Foreign journalists visiting the DPR, however, have noted the absence of the Russian military, and the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission has never reported Russian fighters in the DPR/LPR.

Pravy Sektor extremists set up blockade of Crimea / Translated from French by Tom Winter / Fort Russ / September 20, 2015 / The extremists of Pravy Sektor have installed a blockade of supplies to Crimea in the Kherson region. They are blocking the highways to prevent the trucks that bring in provisions from getting there, reports Television Network 112. At the moment there are about 300 people gathered alongside the highway up to the frontier post at Changar. More keep arriving by car and by bus, the network reports. The Ukrainian extremists set up trashbins of cast concrete. Furthermore they are benefitting from the support of the local authorities who have put a tent city at their disposal, where local activists furnish them food and water. The local Pravy Sektor office has spelled out that they had to get the authorization of the regional Pravy Sektor directorate. Earlier the Ukrainian MPs were envisaging blocking the frontier with Crimea and cutting off its food supplies. The extremists of Pravy Sektor supported the idea, along with representatives of the Tartars from Crimea. Sunday a deputy of the Verkhovna Rada, Refat Chubarov confirmed to journalists that demonstrators were blocking trucks delivering supplies into Crimea, but letting pedestrians and cars cross the border. “Our action will last. The Verkhovna Rada has to duscuss the project of a law that will regulate the relations between continental Ukraine and the occupied Crimea,” he said, adding that it would be necessary to abrogate the law on free exchange in Crimea. Vice premier of Crimea, Mikhail Cheremat, considered the blockage “a political farce.” He indicated that currently the border situation remained calm, but he emphasized that Crimea was prepared to settle any disturbance.

 Magdalena Ogorek (--AP/Alik Keplicz)

Magdalena Ogorek (–AP/Alik Keplicz)

Poles Aren’t Russophobes and are Ready for Dialogue With Moscow –Politician / Sputnik / September 20, 2015 / In an interview for Russian news program Vesti on Saturday, Magdalena Ogorek, a former presidential candidate in Poland’s presidential elections this past May, emphasized that ordinary Poles aren’t Russophobes, adding she has and will continue to call for the normalization of relations between Warsaw and Moscow. The former candidate from Poland’s center-left Democratic Left Alliance, Ogorek emphasized that in a time of strained relations between the two nations, she wholeheartedly supports dialogue to work through differences and to find areas of agreement. “I am a proponent of dialogue. This was in my election campaign. If you talk to one another, it is possible to solve problems,” Ogorek explained. She added that during the campaign, the topic of normalization of relations with Russia was of tremendous interest to ordinary voters. Asked whether the Russians and the Poles seem to be doomed to be enemies, Ogorek emphasized that “this is not true. In the course of the election campaign, nowhere in Poland was I confronted with anti-Russian sentiment. Poles are not Russophobes. Of course, geopolitics plays a big role, but we are neighbors, even if just via the Kaliningrad region, and therefore we must normalize our relations.” Noting that differences of position continue to exist, for example on Crimea, the politician emphasized that “this does not mean that we cannot speak on other issues, where we can find something in common. The election campaign showed that Poles want to see their president not just in Washington, Berlin and Brussels, but also in Moscow. I for one understand that it’s possible not to agree with Vladimir Putin, but . . . MORE>> Click here.
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Saturday September 19, 2015

Alexander Zakharchenko (--Twitter)

Alexander Zakharchenko (–Twitter)

Statement by DPR PM Alexander Zakharchenko on Elections to Local Government / DAN / Edited autotranslation / September 16, 2015 / Zakharchenko: “Today, I have signed a decree on appointment of elections to local self-government, which will be held on October 18 2015. A month later will be held the first elections of the heads of cities and districts of our young state. This is an important event for our Republic in that as we conduct elections to local self-government, we are completing the process of nation-building. I want to note, that on October 18 in Donetsk People’s Republic will host the first phase of elections to local self-government. According to the Decree signed by me, the terms of the electoral process, electoral districts and its basic principles are defined. The election campaign requires additional costs from the budget of the Republic. Taking into account the budgetary constraints and the need to give priority to the restoration of social facilities and industry, as well as providing the population of social benefits, pensions and benefits, the local elections will take place in several stages. At the first stage, the citizens of the DPR will vote for heads of city and district administrations. First of all, we will elect the heads of Amvrosievsky, Novoazovskiy, Starobeshevskiy, Telmanovskiy areas, in the cities of Gorlovka, Debaltsevo, Dokuchaevsk, Donetsk, Yenakiyevo, Zhdanovka, Kirov, Makiyivka, snowy, Torez, Khartsyzsk, Miner and Yasinovataya. The next stage, according to the decree, will be the election of leaders assume all other levels – village, town, etc. We plan full completion of the electoral process at the local level in the first half of 2016. The Donetsk People’s Republic is an independent democratic state, and the election of local self-government is a responsible and important step for every citizen of the Republic, which determines not only the recognition of our country in the international arena, but also the way in which the DPR will follow in subsequent years.” Editor’s note: Larisa Tolstykina, the new “Donetsk Republic” party candidate for Mayor of Makeyevka, said about her campaign: “I’m sure, to join forces, we can achieve a beautiful and promising future for our city and the whole of the young Republic. My whole life is connected with my beloved city, I know its problems, traditions and history, we have a strong team, and together we will achieve great results.”

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Interview from Donetsk with French Journalist Laurent Brayard / New Cold War / September 19, 2015 / French journalist Laurent Brayard announced earlier this year that he would take up residence in Donetsk, eastern Ukraine in order to report on the war situation there. On September 19, Vox Populi broadcast a nine-minute interview with him. The interview is in French, sub-titled in English and Russian. For video, click here.

Denis Pushilin, Vladislav Deinego (--Viktor Drachev/TASS)

Denis Pushilin, Vladislav Deinego (–Viktor Drachev/TASS)

Media: political subgroup bridges positions on Donbass conflict / TASS / September 19, 2015 / MOSCOW / The political subgroup of the Contact Group created to settle the conflict in Donbass has reached certain progress at talks held in the Belarusian capital of Minsk, a source close to the negotiations told the LuganskInformCentre on Saturday. “During the last meeting of the political subgroup ‘close negotiating stances’ were found practically on half of the disputable issues,” the source said. “Kiev’s command to its negotiators ‘Don’t reach agreements!’ may be the only thing to hamper the further movement ahead,” he said. “Ahead of the Normandy Four new meeting in Paris, this highly erroneous position of Ukraine may once again demonstrate Kiev’s lack of readiness to enter negotiations which will become a beacon for the countries-guarantors.” The political subgroup held its latest meeting in Minsk on September 15-16. The working group is expected to convene a next meeting in the Belarusian capital on September 22, along with other subgroups. Leaders of Russia, Ukraine, France and Germany, known as the Normandy Four, are due to meet in Paris on October 2. [… More background at source.]

 Jen Stoltenberg (--AP/Virginia Mayo)

Jen Stoltenberg (–AP/Virginia Mayo)

NATO Secretary General to Visit Ukraine – Ukrainian President’s Office / Sputnik / September 19, 2015 / NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg will visit Ukraine on September 21-22, a statement on the official website of the Ukrainian president said Friday. / MOSCOW / According to the statement, Stoltenberg will attend Yavoriv training center near Ukraine’s border with Poland to take part in the opening ceremony of the joint drills between Ukraine and NATO on the liquidation of consequences of emergencies. Stoltenberg will also participate in the session of the Ukrainian National Security and Defense Council (NSDC). Last year, Ukraine dropped its neutral status to open the way toward membership in the US-led military bloc, but NATO’s former Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said Kiev needed to meet certain criteria before it could join. On September 2, NSDC endorsed a new military doctrine that called for the country to pursue NATO membership. President Petro Poroshenko estimated it will take Ukraine five years to upgrade its military to the level expected from NATO membership applicants. Ukraine is active participant of joint military exercises with NATO states including the Saber Guardian/Rapid Trident-2015 and the naval drills Sea Breeze that took place this year.

Ukraine Closes Airspace to Russia, But Fears Tit-For-Tat Retaliation / Sputnik / Many in Ukraine fear that Russia could close its airspace to flights by Ukrainian airlines in a tit-for-tat response to similar sanctions imposed on Russia by Kiev, Ukrainian media reported on Friday. “We expect Russia to respond in kind and do even more than that… I mean that while we are taking our time implementing the sanctions, the Russians could become the first to close their airspace to our planes,” the Kiev-based Vesti newspaper quoted AtlasJet Ukraine legal assistant Andrei Guk as saying. The Ukrainian side could find it hard implementing the sanctions with no definitive steps outlined and no state agencies who are tasked with the implementation yet still to be named, ECOVIS Bondar & Bondar bureau lawyer Sergei Dzyubenko said. The number of Kiev-Moscow flights is now down to a maximum 30 a week compared to over 100 just two years ago. If the airspace is closed, people will have make detours via Belarus and the Baltic states or take the train to reach their destinations, the newspaper noted. . . . MORE>> Click here.

Oliver Stone (--www.diarioregistrado.com)

Oliver Stone (–www.diarioregistrado.com)

We Are Not Under Threat, We Are The Threat – Oliver Stone (Article And Video) / Novorossia Today / September 19, 2015 / “We’re not under threat. We are the threat.”Americans live in a bubble and are spoon-fed information by a school system, politicians and a media that portrays the US as a beacon of stability and a force for good in the world. In one famous example, former President Ronald Reagan called the US a “shining city on a hill”.“It’s very comforting to be an American,” Stone said. “You get the sense that you are safe and have prosperity of material goods, and that you have enemies everywhere – Russia, China, Iran and North Korea. “You get into this cocoon where you have a big country, two oceans, but that you’re always under threat.” Stone says he wants to counter the “educational crime” of misleading American schoolchildren. “American exceptionalism has to be driven out of our curriculums,” he said. One thing that really hit me hard was the history of our involvement in the Middle East,” Stone said. “It was a nefarious involvement.” Stone traces Washington’s hand in the region back to the 1930s, but he says it reached a peak when President George HW Bush . . . MORE>> Click here.

Finian Cunningham (--Sputnik)

Finian Cunningham (-Sputnik)

Russia Should Ignore Washington’s Blind Arrogance on Syria / by Finian Cunningham / Sputnik / September 17, 2015 / The trouble with arrogance is that it is intellectually blinding; and the trouble with being intellectually blind is that you fail to see your own contradictions – no matter how preposterous those contradictions may be. The arrogant ones we are referring to here are the United States and its Western allies. In the past week, Washington has been up in arms about Russia’s decision to step up its military support for the government of Syria. The Americans are calling on Moscow for “clarification” and are getting all hot under the collar about what they say is unwarranted Russian support for the “regime” of Bashar al-Assad. This finger-wagging from Washington comes at the same time that a US-led military coalition continues to bomb Syria for nearly 12 months. This week, US warplanes striking Syria were joined by fighter jets from Australia for the first time in those operations, which are allegedly aimed at hitting the Islamic State terror group within the country. France and Britain are also expected to soon join the bombing runs inside Syrian territory. Now hold on a moment. Let’s get this straight. The US and its allies have appointed themselves to carry out air strikes on a sovereign country – Syria – without having approval from the government of that country, or without a mandate from the UN Security Council. Thus, the legality of these US-led air strikes – which have resulted in numerous civilian casualties – is therefore of highly dubious status, if not constituting flagrant violation of international law. Yet the arrogant Western powers, led by the US, have the temerity to lecture Russia about . . . MORE>> Click here.

Northern Iraq (--AP/Khalid Mohammed)

Northern Iraq (–AP/Khalid Mohammed)

No Nation ‘Has Ever Threatened Humanity’s Survival’ More Than US / Sputnik / September 18, 2015 / No nation in history has ever threatened peace more than the United States, US author Stephen Lendman emphasizes, adding that Washington bears full responsibility for creating the notorious Islamic State. US President Obama and Secretary of State Kerry are hypocritically calling for a diplomatic solution to the world’s burning conflicts, while waging perpetual wars in multiple theaters, US author and syndicated columnist Stephen Lendman underscores. “Washington bears full responsibility for creating ISIS [ISIL]. Russian UN envoy Vitaly Churkin traced its origin from Bush’s Iraq war, saying it ‘became active when (it) began storming Baghdad…So, the Islamic State ripened in Iraq during the US occupation. (America) should be blamed for’ its rise and proliferation,” Lendman pointed out in his article for Global Research. Remarkably, the recent poll carried out by the British polling organization ORB International, an affiliate of WIN/Gallup International, has found out that 82 percent of Syrians blame the US for creating ISIL, while 79 percent claimed that “foreign fighters made war worse.” Furthermore, the poll has indicated that Bashar al-Assad’s . . . MORE>> Click here.

Friday September 18, 2015
(Brief update)

Petro Poroshenko (--archive.financialexpress.com)

Petro Poroshenko (–archive.financialexpress.com)

Kiev Right Wing Violence: Time for Poroshenko to Look in the Mirror? / by Nikolas Kozloff / Global Research / September 18, 2015 / Amidst the emergence of politically-right-wing forces in Kiev, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko claims to be shocked and outraged by recent violence. Speaking in reference to an explosion which killed three members of the national guard outside parliament and left another officer in a coma, Poroshenko called the attack “an anti-Ukrainian action” and demanded that “all organizers, all representatives of political forces… must carry full responsibility.” More than a whopping 140 were also wounded in the attack, which was apparently caused by a grenade. All three guardsmen were young, in their twenties. The incident occurred in the midst of a demonstration against a plan to provide more autonomy to separatist enclaves in the Ukrainian east where Russian-backed rebels hold sway. Authorities have blamed the explosion on a fighter in the so-called Sich volunteer battalion, which is linked in turn to far right-wing Svoboda or Freedom Party [in Ukraine, “Sich” refers to historic Cossack homelands. Though Cossack is a loaded term and carries unpleasant historic meaning for some, nationalists . . . MORE>>

Alexander Lukashevich (--tass.ru)

Alexander Lukashevich (–tass.ru)

Kiev imitating implementation of political part of Minsk accords — Russia’s envoy to OSCE / TASS / September 18, 2015 / MOSCOW, September 18. /TASS/. Ukrainian forces are not only imitating the implementation of the political part of the Minsk agreement, Russia’s Envoy to the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) Alexander Lukashevich said on Friday. “Over the last week, different sources hinted that the Minsk agreements are allegedly impossible to fulfill, that the implementation cannot be approached formally,” the diplomat told the session of the OSCE Permanent Council in Vienna. ‘in this respect, I would like to unequivocally stress that the Package of measures supported by the corresponding resolution of the UN Security Council, has no alternative. It should be implemented in full measure and in the order envisaged by the document,” Lukashevich noted. “We consider Kiev’s attempts to interpret or distort [the Minsk agreements] to their own advantage as a departure from the agreements made in the five-party format,” the envoy said. The key condition for implementing the Minsk agreements is Kiev’s direct dialogue with representatives of Donetsk and Luhansk, he continued. “For now, all Kiev’s actions in the sphere of implementing the political part of the Minsk agreements remain an imitation,” Lukashevich stressed. [… More background at source.]

Spanish Journalist Sanctioned by Kiev Says Never Been to Ukraine / Sputnik / September 18, 2015 / Cesar Vidal, a Spanish journalist on Kiev’s sanction blacklist, has never been to Ukraine, he told Sputnik in an interview. MADRID (Sputnik) — Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko signed a decree on Wednesday barring almost 400 individuals, including over 40 journalists and bloggers from Russia, the United Kingdom, Germany, Spain, Switzerland, Poland, Israel and Latvia from entering Ukraine. On Friday, Poroshenko lifted sanctions against six European journalists, including Spain’s Antonio Pampliega and Angel Sastre, among a group of journalists presumably kidnapped in Syria this summer. However, Cesar Vidal remained on the blacklist. “I have never been to Ukraine in my life, but I understand the bitterness of the Ukrainian nationalists towards me,” Vidal said. Kiev explained the decision to retain sanctions on Vidal by claiming he had acted as an observer at Crimea’s referendum on its secession from Ukraine, an illegal act from the Kiev point of view. The sanction justifications include an accusation that the journalist made remarks describing Ukraine as an artificial state. Crimea rejoined Russia in March 2014, after 96 percent of the peninsula’s population voted in favor of a reunification deal. According to Vidal, the Spanish radio host, historian and contributor to La Razon daily newspaper, the claim that he had been an observer in the Crimea vote “is a lie which . . . MORE>>

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Thursday September 17, 2015
(Brief update)

Igor Plotnitsky (--02Varvara.wordpress)

Igor Plotnitsky (–02Varvara.wordpress.com)

Luhansk republic leader says 60% of residents support accession to Russia / TASS / September 17, 2015 / Actions of Kiev authorities is pushing the self-proclaimed Luhansk People’s Republic (LPR) out of the process of integration with Ukraine, the republic’s head Igor Plotnitsky told a round table on “Ways of Donbas Integration into Russia” on Thursday. “Developments underway and Kiev’s attitude to us discourage and push us out of the process of integration with Ukraine,” he said. “Today, we have only one way left – a return to our own family. LPR’s integration into Russia is an objective and most likely inevitable process that meets vital interests and aspirations of the Luhansk region,” LuganskInformCentre news agency quoted him as saying. Citing opinion polls, he said Kiev’s attitude prompted local residents to look to Russia. Last year’s surveys said about 20 to 23% supported accession to Russia, but currently this figure had reached about 60%, Plotnitsky said.

 Ilkka Kanerva (--Mikko Stig/Lehtikuva/AP)

Ilkka Kanerva (–Mikko Stig/Lehtikuva/AP)

OSCE PA president plans to visit Kiev, Donbas / TASS / September 17, 2015 / OSCE Parliamentary Assembly President Ilkka Kanerva has announced his plans to visit Ukraine’s capital Kiev and Donbas to get unbiased information on the situation in the region, Russian MP Nikolay Kovalev said on Thursday. “OSCE PA President Ilkka Kanerva has informed of his plans to visit Kiev and Donbas,” said State Duma deputy Kovalev, who is a member of Russia’s delegation at the OSCE PA. Kanerva named no dates but said the goal of the visit would be “to obtain objective information from the both sides.” “He has this intention, and we will see whether this will be put into action,” Kovalev said. On Wednesday, the representatives of Russia’s and Ukraine’s delegations at the Assembly met in Mongolia’s capital Ulan Bator, which hosts the OSCE PA autumn session. The sides agreed to contribute to the implementation of the Minsk agreements.

Dunja Mijatovic (--osce.usmission.gov)

Dunja Mijatovic (–osce.usmission.gov)

OSCE urges Poroshenko to exclude journalists from sanctions list / TASS / September 17, 2015 / VIENNA / OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media Dunja Mijatovic called on Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko on Thursday to exclude journalists from the list of people banned from entering Ukraine. “I call on President Poroshenko to amend his decree and exclude journalists from it [the sanctions list,” Mijatovic said adding that “the authorities should facilitate the work of journalists and abstain from creating administrative obstacles to the entry…. I fully respect governments’ legitimate right to fight terrorism and to protect their national security and their citizens,” Mijatovic noted. “But introducing over-broad restrictions that curb free movement of journalists is not the way to ensure security”. Ukraine’s sanctions against companies and officials: On Wednesday, Poroshenko approved Ukraine’s sanction list against 105 companies. Among them are Russian flag carrier Aeroflot and other air carriers Transaero, Ural Airlines, Siberia and Orenburg Airline, Gazpromavia Airline, Gazprombank, Bank of Moscow, antivirus software producer Kaspersky Laboratory and its Ukraine’s subsidiary. The list includes the Novorossiya civil movement, the Oplot organization, the Prizrak and Somali brigades as well as a number of charity Christian foundations. Poroshenko also approved the inclusion of 388 people in Ukraine’s sanctions list, including Alexander Brod, director of the Moscow-based human rights bureau and a member of the Council for Civil Society Development and Human Rights operating under the Russian president; Russian president’s adviser, Sergey Glazyev; Russian Children’s Rights Ombudsman Pavel Astakhov and Konstantin Kosachev, the head of the Russian Federation Council Committee for International Affairs. Russian journalists from TASS, RIA Novosti, Izvestiya and Rossiyskaya Gazeta newspapers, RUPTLY news agency, NTV television company and Channel One were included in the sanctions list. Among sanctioned journalists are three correspondents from TASS – Andrey Sitov (Washington), Alexander Nechayev, the head of TASS bureau in South Africa; and Alexander Surzhansky, an employee of the agency’s department for European countries. All sanctioned individuals are banned from entering Ukraine, and their assets, if any, on the territory of Ukraine are subject to being frozen.

Putin, Berlusconi (--AFP/ Alexei Druzhnin)

Putin, Berlusconi (–AFP/ Alexei Druzhnin)

Not Welcome: Ukraine Bans Former Italian PM Berlusconi for Three Years / Sputnik / September 17, 2015 / KIEV (Sputnik) – Last week, Italian ex-prime minister visited Crimea and met with Russian President Vladimir Putin. According to him, Putin showed him very interesting places on the Black Sea peninsula, in particular the ancient city of Tauric Chersonese, the UNESCO World Heritage Site. This is the third meeting of Putin and Berlusconi this year. Early in June, the Russian president traveled to Rome to meet with Pope Francis and Italian leadership, including Berlusconi. Following the meeting, Berlusconi said that his Forza Italia party would advocate for lifting the anti-Russia economic sanctions imposed by the European Union due to the Ukrainian crisis. “A decision was made on September 14, 2015, to prohibit Italian citizen Silvio Berlusconi from entering the territory of Ukraine for [a period of] three years in the interests of providing security to our state,” Ukraine’s Security Service said in a response to the portal.

Yuriy Stets (--Wikipedia)

Yuriy Stets (–Wikipedia)

Ukraine Information Minister to Launch Review of Blacklisted Journalists / Sputnik / September 17, 2015 / Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko signed a decree on Wednesday sanctioning 90 entities and barring over 400 people, including several high-ranking individuals and journalists, from entering Ukraine for one year. The Ukrainian president said sanctions were a contribution to his country’s defense amid the ongoing conflict in the southeast. / MOSCOW / Ukrainian Information Policy Minister Yuriy Stets said Thursday he would revise the list of journalists on a new Kiev blacklist. “The list of media representatives which were sanctioned is ambiguous and needs to be changed… During the next session of the National Security and Defense Council I shall introduce my proposals,” Stets posted on Facebook, adding that he has begun conversations with security officials on the issue. The new restrictions target more than 40 journalists and bloggers from the United Kingdom, Germany, Spain, Switzerland, Poland, Israel, Latvia and Russia. The sanctions against journalists were criticized by the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, Kremlin and the Committee to Protect Journalists.

Hans-Dietrich Genscher (--Sputnik/AFP/ANP)

Hans-Dietrich Genscher (–Sputnik/AFP/ANP)

Global Problems Can Only Be Solved With Russia’s Help – Former German FM / Sputnik / September 17, 2015 / Close cooperation with Russia is the only way to resolve major problems the world’s nations are facing these days, former German foreign minister Hans-Dietrich Genscher said on Thursday. “Global and European challenges can only be solved by working together with Russia and certainly not against our major partner in Europe,” Hans-Dietrich Genscher said while addressing participants of a conference marking the 70th anniversary of the 1945 Potsdam Agreement, which opened outside Berlin on Thursday. Genscher, who served as German foreign minister from 1974 to 1992, called for an active “reset” of the European Union with a focus on making it ready for the political challenges it might face in the coming years. The Potsdam Agreement was the agreement between three WW II Allies, the Soviet Union, Britain and the United States, for the post-war military occupation and reconstruction of Germany.

Ban Ki-moon (--teimun.org)

Ban Ki-moon (–teimun.org)

Migrant crisis: UN ‘shocked’ over clashes in Hungary / Strategic Culture Foundation / September 17, 2015 / UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has said he is “shocked” after Hungarian police fired tear gas and water cannon to force migrants back from its border. Mr Ban said such treatment of asylum seekers was “unacceptable”. Hundreds were involved in clashes at the Hungary-Serbia border on Wednesday, trying to breach a razor-wire fence. More than 5,000 migrants have entered Croatia so far – avoiding Hungary – police say, and another 7,266 entered Germany on Wednesday. German police said this was more than double the number that crossed the previous day, adding that most were picked up on the border with Austria. Germany is the final goal of many migrants, as the European Union remains divided over how to deal with the crisis. What is the next route through Europe? . . . MORE>>

Refugees Crisis Splits European Countries (I) / Strategic Culture Foundation / September 17, 2015 / Inside the European Union the discords are growing between Germany allied with Austria and the states of Central and Eastern Europe. The latter have grounds to believe that Berlin and Vienna – tacitly supported by Brussels – try to shift the heavy financial, political, social and cultural burden on their shoulders. Hungary is a good example. The government of Victor Orban plans to stop the free flow of refugees across its territory to Germany and Austria. Zoltán Kovács, the government spokesperson, assured that Hungary will comply with its obligations, defend its borders and try to register all coming migrants. He said, German and Austrian leaders encourage migration and make them believe they are welcome. As a result, they refuse to cooperate with . . . MORE>>
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