One OSCE patrol member died, another one injured in mine explosion last Sunday.
OSCE observers spot tanks, missile launchers at Luhansk air field, specifically 12 APCs (five MTLB and seven BTR–80), seven IFVs (BMP-2), 15 trucks and five vehicles for towing howitzers, all stationary. There were also over 500 armed men wearing military-style clothing. The SMM again saw one tank (T-64) with a front-mounted mine sweeper near “DPR”-controlled Nikishyne (60km north-east of Donetsk) and continued to observe seven multiple-launch rocket systems (BM-21 Grad, 122mm), seven self-propelled howitzers (2S1 Gvozdika, 122mm), ten towed howitzers (five D-30 Lyagushka, 122mm; and five 2A65 Msta-B, 152mm), and seven tanks (T-72) at an aerodrome in the south-eastern outskirts of Luhansk city.
America gives Ukraine war communication devices for $21 million.
Russia sent its 64th "humanitarian convoy" to occupied Donbas on April 27. Apart from that Meduza outlet gathered accessible data of Russia’s Federal Customs Service and counted $222 mln in goods transported by Russia to occupied Donbas, which means growing trade volumes between Russia and so-called Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics and that self-proclaimed republics in eastern Ukraine already became the largest foreign consumers of Russian meat and beer.
Previously, in late 2013, Euromaidan activists held mass rallies, demanding, in particular, better European future for Ukraine, which included signature of EU-Ukraine Association Agreement and, in certain perspective, a EU-Ukraine visa free regime. As the 2014 Revolution of Dignity in Ukraine proved victorious and the pro-Russian government was overthrown, the newly-shaped Ukrainian authority managed to get back on track with the EU. Despite the ongoing Russian aggression in Crimea and Donbas, common Ukrainian citizens and the current government have been working hard to obtain the visa free regime.
Jamala, Ukrainian singer and the winner of Eurovision 2016, got married today, on April 26.
Meanwhile Kyiv is actively preparing for the Eurovision Song Contest with semifanals on May 9 and 11, and a final on May 13. The Security Service of Ukraine, held the tactical counter-terrorist drills at the International Exhibition Centre in Kyiv on Tuesday. Khreshchatyk street, the main street of Kyiv, was closed off for transport on April 26 until May 18. Official Eurovision fan zone will remain on Khreshchatyk from May 4 to 14 in Kyiv. Eurovision Village layout has been published.
A promo video "Come to Ukraine to celebrate diversity" is made public two weeks ahead of the contest.
Internal Minister Arsen Avakov announced that he does not see threats to Eurovision event, but sees enough fools from Russian Federation who will try to stir the situation during the contest. Read the full quote here and many other interesting staff on Eurovision here.
This week in history
April, 26 marked the 31st anniversary of the largest man-made catastrophe in history.
Besides, the first ever Ukrainian solar power plant could be launched already in the second quarter of this year, perhaps in summer 2017. Construction of the plant, located in the Chornobyl exclusion zone, is sponsored by Ukrainian investors.
This week Poles and Ukrainians mark the 70th anniversary of Operation Vistula – the forced resettlement of Ukrainians to Poland, carried out by the Soviet authorities in spring and summer 1947; it caused severe ethnic hostilities, traces of which are still tangible.
A day before that activists and representatives of Polish nationalistic organizations dismantled the memorial grave-stone to the Ukrainian Insurgent Army soldiers in Hruszowice village near Przemysl. The memorial has already been abused by vandals before.
Ukraine’s Centre for Studies of Liberation Movements digitized and released documents about the 1947 Vistula operation.