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HIGHLIGHTS OF THE WEEK: OCTOBER 8 – 12

Donbas conflict zone, Ichnia, Tomos for Ukrainian Orthodox Church, PACE, Ukrainian political prisoners in Russia - the whole week on one page
22:30, 12 October 2018

112 Agency

About Donbas conflict

This week’s developments in the combat zone in Donbas include the liberation of a village in the ‘grey zone’ of Volnovakha district in Donetsk region, the attack on OSCE SMM patrol near Donetsk water filtration plant and the incident involving a live missile falling in the school yard in Lysychansk.

Four Ukrainian soldiers deceased in combat on October 10, on the same day as the SMM observers came under fire near Donetsk water filtering station.

The U.S. Department of the State urged the Kremlin to abstain from preparations to the 'local election' in Donbas slated for November 11. Kurt Volker, the U.S. Special Representative for Ukraine added that Washington disapproved Russia’s idea to conduct a referendum on the governance status of Donbas.

Ukraine’s law enforcement agencies disclosed certain details of the activities of Wagner Group, the infamous pro-Kremlin military company involved in the campaigns in Syria and Donbas. The SBU also revealed that Russia deployed the Wagner Group’s recruitment centers in Luhansk region.

Watch the related video:

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About Ichnia explosions

An explosion in the sixth ammo depot with 69,500 tons of ammunition occurred in Ichnia, Chernihiv region on October 9. 12,500 people were evacuated from the area.

A criminal proceeding was opened on the incident - Security Service (SBU) considered three possible lines of inquiry in the case of these explosions, and later sabotage was considered the main one.

On October 11, it was reported that the fire in ammo depot was completely eliminated.  

Here is how the city looked like after the explosions.

On October 12, blasts are still heard at the Defense Ministry's military warehouse, yet, the overall intensity of the explosions decreased

Moreover, Defence Ministry accused 112 Ukraine of distorting the information about this incident.

  

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About Ukrainian political prisoners in Russia

Talking about Oleg Sentsov, Russian Ombudsman in Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous District  claimed that he did not cease the hunger strike and Russian ombudswoman added that Ukrainian filmmaker regularly takes food and is under the supervision of doctors, and he looks good. Also, Sentsov reached the final round in the contest for Andrey Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought.

Ukrainian political prisoner Viktor Balukh, detained in Crimea, stopped the hunger strike that lasted for 205 days. While journalist Roman Sushchenko was transferred from Moscow prison to the place of service of sentence, however, the location was not specified.  

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About Tomos for Ukrainian Church

Synodus of Ecumenical Patriarchate lifted anathema off Ukraine's Filaret and published the full text on granting the autocephaly to Ukrainian church in Greek and English. Ecumenical Patriarchate noted Russian Orthodox Church illegally annexed Kyiv Metropoly in 17th century. Ukraine can receive autocephaly in November.

U.S. Envoy to Ukraine Kurt Volker said U.S. supported Ukraine's will to have own local church. He added that Russia 'loses Ukraine' upon autocephaly of Ukraine's Orthodox Church.

 

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About PACE and Ukraine

This year’s Ukrainian delegation to PACE was extremely successful - PACE supported Ukraine's amendments concerning sanctions against Russian delegation, keeping Russia out of PACE until 2020. There was also a show of love and hate on the sidelines – Russian journalists were insistent to interview Ukrainians which trigged their patriotic reaction and made them sign anthem. Compliments wasted little time.

  

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About Crimea and Sea of Azov

In annexed Crimea, a citizen of Armyansk complained about new chemical emissions to the atmosphere. Concerning the situation in the Sea of Azov, the MPs of the European Parliament will consider the issue on October 23. While Ukraine accused the Russian side of violating the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea.

 

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About 112 Ukraine TV channel

After last week’s parliamentary attack on freedom of speech and 112 Ukraine TV channel, we lunched a petition (please sign) in Ukraine and a signature gathering in PACE in Strasbourg. Freedom of speech got support of Zurab Alasania and European MP Nathan Gill among others.

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