Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Crisis in Ukraine - Russia continues moving troops into Ukraine

Crisis in Ukraine: Daily Briefing
5 November, 7 PM Kyiv time

1. Russian Invasion of Ukraine
The National Security and Defense Council (RNBO) reported at 12:30 PM Kyiv time that the intensity of shelling of Ukrainian positions by Kremlin-backed terrorists has increased and military equipment and personnel continue to be transferred from the Russian Federation to Ukrainian territory. In the last 24 hours, 5 Russian drone reconnaissance aircraft were identified near Mariupol and Tryokhizbenky. In the areas where these reconnaissance flights were spotted, Kremlin-backed terrorists began heavy artillery shelling. Kremlin-backed terrorists shelled Ukrainian positions near Hranitne, Starohnativka, Novohryhorivka and Novolaspa villages in Donetsk oblast. Kremlin-backed terrorists shelled Ukrainian positions at the Donetsk airport 4 times with artillery, mortars and grenade launchers, and shelled Ukrainian positions near Debaltseve with Grads (truck-mounted multiple rocket launchers) and mortars. The RNBO reported that in the last 24 hours, 2 Ukrainian soldiers were killed and 9 wounded. The Donetsk city administration reported at 6:30 PM Kyiv time that 2 teenagers were killed and 3 injured when a shell struck a playground at school no. 63 on Stepanenko street in Donetsk city.

2. Ukrainian Government will stop financing territories under control of Kremlin-backed terrorists
Ukrainian PM A. Yatseniuk stated that no funds will be directed from the central budget to the parts of Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts under the control of Kremlin-backed terrorists. The government will continue to deliver gas and electricity in order to prevent a humanitarian catastrophe. Yatseniuk stated that “while territories of Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts are under the control of various self-proclaimed [authorities] the central budget will not send money there. The government will not finance terrorists. […] I officially state that all pensions, all social payments, all benefits are being counted for each person. When Russian terrorists leave the territory of Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts, we will immediately regain control of the territories and pay out to each person those social benefits to which they have a right. Today, [if we] make payments to these territories – this money will not reach the people – it will be stolen...and this is nothing else than direct support for Russian terrorism.”

3. President to ask Parliament to cancel law on “special procedures for local government” 
On 4 November a meeting of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine (RNBO) was held in order to discuss the security situation after Kremlin-backed terrorists held illegal and illegitimate “elections” in territories under their control on 2 November. The RNBO stated that the holding of these so-called “elections” was a serious violation of the Minsk agreements.  The RNBO recommended that the President submit to Parliament a draft bill that would cancel the Law “On special procedures for local government in particular districts of Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts.” The press service of President Poroshenko stated, “The President underlined, that the repeal of this law does not mean an abandonment of the Minsk agreements. […] Kyiv will be ready to adopt a new law under the following conditions: a sustainable ceasefire, withdrawal of troops from the contact line, a clear demarcation of the contact line established on 5 September in the Minsk Protocol, the release of all hostages, including those illegally held on the territory of the Russian Federation, and also on the condition of cancellation of the illegal electoral farce of 2 November.”

4. NATO Secretary General: Russian troops moving closer to border, Russian special forces operating in Ukraine
After a meeting with EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy F. Mogherini on 4 November, NATO Secretary General J. Stoltenberg stated, “Recently we are also seeing Russian troops moving closer to the border with Ukraine and Russia continues to support the separatists by training them, by providing equipment, and supporting them also by having special forces, Russian special forces, inside the eastern parts of Ukraine. So we call on Russia to make genuine efforts towards a peaceful solution and to use all their influence on the separatists to make them respect the Minsk Agreements and respect the ceasefire which is a precondition for a political solution to the difficult situation in Ukraine.”

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