Crisis in Ukraine: Daily Briefing
19 October 2016, 6 PM Kyiv time
1. Russian Invasion of Ukraine
The National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine reported that yesterday towards Luhansk, Russian-terrorist forces shelled Ukrainian positions at Krymske and Novozvanivka with mortars. Towards Donetsk, Russian-terrorist forces shelled Ukrainian positions near Avdiyivka with mortars and artillery. Russian-terrorist forces shelled Ukrainian positions at Verkhnotoretske with mortars. Towards Mariupol, Russian-terrorist forces shelled residential areas of Vynhradne and Pyshchevyk, and carried out heavy shelling of Ukrainian positions near Vodyane. At Krasnohorivka Russian-terrorist forces shelled Ukrainian positions with mortars. Russian-terrorist forces attacked a Ukrainian position at Hranitne. Ukrainian forces repelled the attack. The RNBO reported that in the last 24 hours one Ukrainian soldier was killed and one Ukrainian soldier was wounded in action.
2. Prime Minister of Ukraine presents Government Report for II and III Quarter of 2016
Ukraine’s Prime Minister V. Groysman presented the Government’s Report for II and III Quarter of 2016. According to statistical data, “industrial output grew by 2% in Ukraine after a long period of decline, construction production index upped by 11.9 %, there is observed slowing down of inflation processes: in nine months of 2016 – 6.4% as compared to 43.3 % in 2015. Average monthly salary in January-August 2016 rose by 24.4 % and makes up UAH 4 944. Moreover, investment volumes increased by over USD 2.5 billion, which exceeds by 19 % the corresponding period of last year,” the Cabinet of Ministers reported. More information on the Government Report is available at http://www.kmu.gov.ua/control/
3. Ukraine’s President in Berlin for talks, will visit Brussels and NATO
Ukraine’s President P. Poroshenko is in Berlin for talks in the “Normandy” format (Ukraine, Germany, France, Russia). The results of the talks are unknown as of this writing. On 20 October, President Poroshenko will visit Brussels for a series of meetings with the leadership of the EU. Poroshenko’s press service reported, “The leaders of Ukraine and EU institutions will discuss the developments in Donbas and Crimea, fulfillment of the Minsk agreements and prospects of sanctions’ regime against Russia in response to its aggression against Ukraine. The parties will also discuss progress in the implementation of reforms and ways to increase the EU support. They will also coordinate future steps on ratification of the Association Agreement and introduction of the visa-free regime for Ukrainians.” Poroshenko will also meet with NATO Secretary General J. Stoltenberg on 20 October.
4. Atlantic Council on Ukraine’s Refugees
Diane Francis, Senior Fellow at the Atlantic Council Dinu Patriciu Eurasia Center, wrote “Lebanon, Turkey, and Jordan are not the world’s only major ‘refugee’ hosting nations.Ukraine too hosts enormous numbers of people who have had to leave their homes because of war. Millions fled their homes in 2014 after Russian operatives and tanks invaded Ukraine’s eastern regions and annexed Crimea. […]According to Ukraine’s Ministry of Social Policy, 1.7 million Ukrainians are officially registered as [Internally Displaced Persons]. […] The death and destruction caused by Russia’s occupation, in human terms, is horrific. Ukraine’s Ministry of Social Policy reported that 25,000 children live in towns and villages along the conflict line; they are still in insecure conditions. Because of Russian aggression, sixty-eight children have been killed and 158 have been wounded over the last two years. […] The conflict in the Donbas has affected the lives of more than half a million children in Ukraine. Each third child-200,000 children-needs at least some psychological assistance. […] The exodus from the east began immediately after the Revolution of Dignity drove Ukraine’s larcenous President Viktor Yanukovych back to Russia. Russians invaded, cities have been ransacked, and millions of dispossessed persons have been victimized. And Russia has not abated its aggression; the only reason it is not in Kyiv now is because of the Ukrainian military’s resistance. […] This is a refugee catastrophe, but unlike those millions forced to flee Syria or Sudan, Ukraine’s dispossessed are invisible to the world. Imagine if two million Ukrainians had to live in camps in Poland. If this were the case, the world would finally see-and fully condemn-Russian President Vladimir Putin’s predation and flagrant breach of international law. […] And Russia has yet to be brought before the United Nations for waging this terrible war against Ukraine.” The full report is available athttp://www.atlanticcouncil.