Crisis in Ukraine: Daily Briefing
26 January 2016, 7 PM Kyiv time
- Russian Invasion of Ukraine
The National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine (RNBO) reported that yesterday, towards Donetsk, Russian-terrorist forces fired on Ukrainian positions along the entire sector of the front. Russian-terrorist forces shelled Ukrainian positions with tanks at Pisky. Towards Mariupol, Russian-terrorist forces fired on Ukrainian forces at Maryinka. There was no combat on the Luhansk sector of the front. The Ministry of Defense of Ukraine reported that yesterday, Russian-terrorist forces fired on Ukrainian positions 44 times in total. The RNBO reported that yesterday no Ukrainian soldiers were killed and one was wounded in action.
- Ukraine’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs demands release of Nadiya Savchenko and other Ukrainian political prisoners held in Russia
Ukraine’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated its “decisive protest in connection with the ongoing cynical judicial reprisals against Ukrainian citizen Nadiya Savchenko. Particularly outrageous is the constant, demonstrative disregard by Russia’s so-called judiciary of elementary procedural norms. Savchenko’s rights are systematically violated: the court refuses to examine official documents obtained from Ukraine by the defense, refuses to hear witnesses called by the defense, refuses to include the defense’s evidence – protocols of witness testimony, evidence regarding [Savchenko’s] abduction, expertise on videos that contain unequivocal proof of her innocence. […] We demand that the Russian Federation cease the persecution of Nadiya Savchenko and other illegally detained Ukrainian citizens – political prisoners of Russia – immediately release them and ensure their safe return to Ukraine.”
3. RNBO Secretary: Putin is casting doubt on the borders of Europe
On 25 January, Russian President V. Putin stated, “why did they make Donbass part of Ukraine? The reason was to raise the share of the proletariat there to ensure greater social support. Pure nonsense, as you may see. And this is not the only example, there are many others.” Reacting to this statement, the Secretary of Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council (RNBO) O. Turchynov stated, “A leader of a state with nuclear capability is casting doubt on the borders of Europe that were formed after WWII, openly expressing territorial claims on Ukraine. During his speech in the Kremlin Putin said that Donbas was wrongly transferred to Ukraine. Such public statements – are a blatant attempt at political justification for military aggression against our country.” Turchynov stated that there is only one answer to this aggression – strengthening Ukraine’s defense capabilities.
- US Treasury Department: Putin is the “picture of corruption”
Adam Szubin, US Treasury Department Acting Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence told BBC’s Panorama program that Russian President V Putin has secretly been amassing personal wealth through corruption. Szubin stated, “We’ve seen him enriching his friends, his close allies and marginalizing those who he doesn’t view as friends using state assets. Whether that’s Russia’s energy wealth, whether it’s other state contracts, he directs those to whom he believes will serve him and excludes those who don’t. To me, that is a picture of corruption […] He supposedly draws a state salary of something like $110,000 a year […]That is not an accurate statement of the man’s wealth, and he has longtime training and practices in terms of how to mask his actual wealth.”