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HIGHLIGHTS OF THE WEEK: SEPT. 25 - OCT. 1
22:30, 1 October 2017
HIGHLIGHTS OF THE WEEK: SEPT. 25 - OCT. 1

Kalynivka arsenal fire, accusations of arms supplies, ongoing Russian aggression in the combat zone in the East of Ukraine, Ukrainian-Hungarian tensions, Invictus Games, etc.

22:30, 1 October 2017

112 Agency

Explosions at Kalynivka arsenal

There was no other news in Ukraine on Wednesday, September 27, other than fire on Kalynivka ammunition depot. Large-scale fire at 48th arsenal occurs near Vinnytsia on late Tuesday, September 26. 

Kalynivka blasts
Reuters screenshot

The Kalynivka ammunition storage is one of the biggest ammo depots in Ukraine. 

Consequences and punishment of perpetrators are here. 

Two women injured in the result of the fire on ammunition arsenal in Kalynivka. Another two injured while eliminating the consequences. Demolition experts finished clearing the areas adjacent to the ammunition depot and Kalynivka turned back to normal life by September 28. 

However, the de-mining of the territories hit by the shells may last until November. 

 The U.S. Special Envoy in Ukraine Kurt Voker said that the blasts at ammunition depots in Kalynivka are not going to affect Washington’s stance in terms of supplying lethal arms to Ukraine

 

Ukraine is accused of arms supplies to South Sudan

Amnesty International

On September 25, Amnesty International claimed that a Ukrainian state-owned company supplied arms to South Sudan, which were later used to kill civilians, thus violating the country's international obligations.  The organization emphasized that the Ukrainian state-owned company violated Ukraine’s international obligations under the Arms Trade Treaty. Ukrinmash, the company under informational attack, refuted the information on supplying arms to South Sudan and said that the statement of Amnesty International doesn’t correspond to reality.  Later the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP) in the investigation stated that European producers supply the arms to Africa and the Middle East using the defense enterprises of Ukraine as the mediators.Ukraine's State Service of Export Control (SSECU) reported that the accusations of the non-governmental Amnesty International and OCCRP do not have the grounds for legal evaluation. 

Recently Ukraine often comes under fire of illegal arms supplies accusations, read the top weapon stories here. 

 

Donbas Conflict in Eastern Ukraine

Open source

Pro-Russian militants go on violating truce on the combat zone of Donbas. Militants attacked living blocks of Maryinka on September 25, 7 buildings damaged. l Luckily, no casualties occurred.

Related: Javelins are an important tool to prevent Russians from any further incursions, - Will Hurd
 

 

UN peacekeepers in Donbas

Parliamentarians of Ukraine and Canada discussed an issue of sending UN peacekeepers to Donbas to the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the Verkhovna Rada on September 25. The sides discussed the issue of the deployment the UN peacekeeping mission. The Ukrainian side reported about the inner political situation in our country, particularly, about the situation in the East of Ukraine and temporary occupied Autonomous Republic of Crimea and Sevastopol and spoke out for the necessity of the use of more effective measures against Russian aggressor.

Open source

The parties also considered the holding of the all-inclusive inner reforms, discussion of the issue of the deployment of the UN peacekeeping mission in Donbas that can protect the citizens from the armed violence and further the restoration of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the state and the perspectives of the membership of Ukraine in NATO. Couple days later Ukraine’s Poroshenko and German Chancellor Angela Merkel hold a phone talk on UN peacekeepers. The U.S. envoy Kurt Volker is going to discuss the peacekeepers’ issue with Russian presidential advisor Vladislav Surkov to meet in early October. The President’s draft bill on Donbas reintegration will introduce the term “Russian occupational power” into Ukrainian legislation. The Presidential Administration expects that the document will give Ukraine more leverage in the International Court of Justice, as well as help Kyiv, agree upon the necessity for Ukraine format of the peacekeeping mission to Donbas. 

 

West-2017 finished, but the troops not withdrawn yet

The Russian-Belarusian Russian-Belarusian West-2017 military drills, which started on the territory of Belarus along its borders with Baltic countries and Ukraine on September 14, terminated on September 20. Head of General Staff of Ukraine Viktor Muzhenko reported to Reuters that Russia had brought more troops than announced, and withdrew just a few of them after the exercise finished.

Open source

The Ukrainian Armed Forces together with the Verification Department of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine also reported that the part of the joint Russian-Belarusian West-2017 strategic drills, which was available for the international observers, was only “deemed open”. which was traditionally denied by the Belarusian Ministry of Defense.

Ukraine, Hungary, and education

Official Budapest insists on the reconsideration of the language article of the law because the Hungarian authorities think that it violates the rights of the 150 000 people of Hungarian national minority in Zakarpattia.

The new law on education entered into force in Ukraine. In particular, it implements 12-years-long school program and allows teaching languages of national minorities only in specially created classes in Ukrainian schools.

Open source

This particular decision evoked outrage in Moldova, Romania, Russia and Hungary. Budapest even threatens to slow down the process of Ukraine’s integration with the EU.

After Hungary appealed to the UN to investigate Ukrainian education law last week, Minister of Human Resources of Hungary Zoltan Balog appealed with the official letter to the Ukrainian Minister of Education Liliia Grynevych and asked for a personal meeting to discuss the new ‘Law on Education’.  Minister of Foreign Affairs of Hungary Peter Szijjarto claimed that the government of Hungary decided to block all further decisions of the EU that aim for the rapprochement of the EU with Ukraine due to the ‘Law on Education’.

Related: Hungarian language blackmail: Will Budapest bury European future of Ukraine?

Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin stated that Ukrainian authorities are working to ensure the maximum comfort of our Hungarian origin compatriots in connection with the entry of the law on education into force. 

Related: Why Hungary falls into geopolitical childhood, when recalling Ukraine?

Ilmi Umerov

Court in occupied Crimea sentences Umerov to two years in the colony under art. 280.1 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation - public calls for the implementation of actions aimed at violating the territorial integrity of the Russian Federation. 

Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko called on international colleagues to increase pressure on Russia because of Umerov’s sentence. International reax was quite solid: United Kingdom condemns Umerov’s sentence, Amnesty International human rights activists demanded to overturn Umerov's verdict, EU Delegation to Ukraine demanded to immediately free Umerov, PACE also strongly condemned the sentence for Deputy Chairman of Crimean Tatar Mejlis.

Facebook Petro Poroshenko

On a phone talk, Poroshenko and Angela Merkel discussed the recent sentence to Ilmi Umerov that was made by the court in Crimea that is under control of Russia. Poroshenko emphasized the importance of the actions that will prevent the implementation of this sentence and the consolidation of the international support on the issue of the release of the Ukrainian prisoners in Russia.

Ilmi Umerov gave his interview to the Guardian. He said: "There is little hope of justice through an official appeal, and I definitely will not make any appeals for clemency."

To recall, The EU mission in Ukraine demanded the immediate release of Umerov.

Invictus Games

Last Sunday Invictus Games, an international Paralympic-style multi-sport event, created by Prince Harry of Wales, in which wounded, injured or sick armed services personnel and their associated veterans take part in sports, opened in Toronto. President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko and First Lady Maryna Poroshenko participated in the opening ceremony.

The very next day, Oleh Zymnikov brought the first gold to the Ukrainian team in the run for 1500 meters. Later, a former soldier of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, and now - Lieutenant of the National Police Serhiy Torchynsky won a bronze medal in athletics discipline of the shot put (6 kg, category IF4). The same day Olexander Tkachenko won silver at the 400 m race. 

On Friday, September 29, in the Canadian city of Toronto, the Ukrainian team completed its participation in the Invictus Games 2017, winning 14 medals: 8 golden, 3 silver and 3 bronze medals. 

112 Agency

 

 

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