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HIGHLIGHTS OF THE WEEK: MARCH 15 – 19

Source : 112 Ukraine

Donbas conflict, coronavirus, Crimea, Nord Stream 2, flight PS752 and other news of the week
22:33, 19 March 2021

112 Agency

Donbas conflict

Ukrainian serviceman deceased during the attack on Pivdenne in Donbas. The tragedy took place on March 18.

Foreign Ministers of G7 countries condemned the ongoing actions of Russia on the disruption of the sovereignty of Ukraine, territorial integrity and independence.

Chief Monitor of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine Yaşar Halit Çevik stated that the mechanism of anti-mine activity and draft document on mine clearance of 19 new areas at the demarcation line preliminary agreed during the Paris summit are ready. In turn, Ukraine’s Ministry for Temporarily Occupied Territories offered Russia to conduct a ‘humanitarian mine clearing campaign’ before Easter.

Russia refuses any existence of a peace plan to solve Donbas conflict. Dmitriy Kozak, Deputy Head of the Administration of the Russian President said so on March 16.

Coronavirus

This week, many countries stop the use of AstraZeneca vaccine after the reports of blood clots after the vaccination. Particularly, the next countries stop the use of AstraZeneca: the Netherlands, Germany, France and Italy, Spain, Portugal, Cyprus, Slovenia and Latvia.

Norwegian scientists stated that the AstraZeneca vaccine causes a powerful immune response that may eventually lead to blood clots. Besides, a teacher from Italian Piedmont and a teacher from Spanish Marbella died after the vaccination with AstraZeneca drug. Georgia recorded the first death from anaphylactic shock after the AstraZeneca vaccination.

However, both, the EMA and the WHO considered AstraZeneca vaccine safe and recommended to continue the use of the vaccine. Later, a number of countries restored the vaccination with AstraZeneca.

Meanwhile, Ukraine’s parliament lifted responsibility for vaccines’ producers for consequences after the vaccination. Besides, it is supposed that a negative result of PCR testing for Covid-19 will become a condition of entry into Ukraine, which must be done 48 hours before entering the country.

Nord Stream 2

This week, Blinken reiterated that companies involved in Nord Stream 2 construction may face US sanctions.

Germany agreed to invest in Ukraine so as to save Nord Stream 2. During the economic forum in Berlin on March 19, Merkel is supposed to announce that the German companies in Ukraine will be working more actively. Ukrainian delegation, including Prime Minister Denys Shmygal will be also present at that event.

Crimea

Ukraine states it would not supply water to Crimea for any reason.

In addition, G7 stated that Crimea is Ukraine and Russia is a side of the conflict.

At the same time, a journalist seized in Russian-occupied Crimea accused of ‘spying and sabotage’ for Ukraine.

Earlier, it was reported that 268 Ukrainian citizens are held captive in Donbas, and 114 - in Russia and Crimea.

PS752 flight

Iran’s civil aviation body has released the final report on the downing of a Ukrainian passenger plane in Tehran in 2020. The blame was laid on the air defense operator.

However, Ukraine is not happy with this document, to put it mildly. Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba criticized Iran's final report on the causes of the crash of the Ukraine International Airlines (UIA) flight PS752. The official accused Iran of concealing the true causes of its downing.

Canada agreed with the Ukrainian government’s conclusion, calling Iran’s report “incomplete”. A joint statement of Foreign Minister Marc Garneau and Minister of Transport Omar Alghabra questions the conclusions made by Iranian officials. On the other hand, the International Coordination and Response Group for victims of PS752 flight accepted the report.

Center for Countering Disinformation

Recenty, it was reported that the Center for counteraction disinformation would start its work in Ukraine soon. Earlier, President Volodymyr Zelensky stated that the center should become the international hub for counteraction disinformation and propaganda all over the world. You can read more about the history and purposes of the center here.

Sports

U.S. is to hold the eighth edition of Warrior Games, the international competition involving the wounded, injured or ill service personnel and army veterans. The team of 40 Ukrainian veterans will perform there for the first time. This year, the competition will be held in September in Orlando, Florida.

Both Ukrainian football teams lost the second leg of their fixtures in the playoffs of UEFA Europa League. Dynamo Kyiv lost to Villarreal in the away game, and Roma defeated Shakhtar Donetsk. Thus, neither of the Ukrainian clubs will proceed to the next stage of the playoffs in this competition.

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