Ukraine has two nonnegotiable priorities in its ongoing war with Russia: survival and reform. Ukraine must survive as a sovereign democratic state in the short term if it is to reform, and it must reform itself in the medium term in order to survive and become a prosperous and secure sovereign democratic state in the long term. Both goals can be best advanced if Ukraine washes its hands of the enclave of the Donbas region that Russia and its proxies now control.
WARSAW - The speaker of Poland's parliament, Radoslaw Sikorski, said on Oct. 21 he had mis-remembered when he told an interviewer that Russian President Vladimir Putin had proposed that Warsaw and Moscow occupy Ukraine and divide it between them.
Ukraine's foreign minister urged Russia on Oct. 21 to dissuade separatists in the east from holding their own elections on Nov. 2 because the unauthorized vote could lead to a permanent divide.
Russians pulled 52.6 billion rubles ($1.3 billion) out of ruble deposits in September as Moscow battled to keep its currency afloat amid plummeting oil prices, high capital outflows and Western sanctions over the Ukraine crisis, business daily Vedomosti reported on Oct. 21, citing data from the Central Bank.
KHARKIV - The authorities in Kharkiv Oblast have set up 32 roadblocks to prevent weapons and gunmen from the Donbas hostilities zone from getting in, the public liaisons department of the Ukrainian Interior Ministry's main office in Kharkiv Oblast has reported.
Human Rights Watch, an influential human rights watchdog, claimed in its report on Oct. 20 that Ukraine forces have used banned and dangerous cluster bombs in its war against Russian-backed separatists in the east.
OSLO - Lithuania will be able to survive without Russian gas after its liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal starts up soon, redrawing the energy map for the Baltic states, President Dalia Grybauskaite said on Oct. 21.
This remarkable video shows a small Ukrainian girl narrowly escaping the shelling of Shakhtar Donetsk’s Donbas Arena on Oct. 21.
In Dnipropetrovsk Oblast, a center of Ukraine’s heavy industry and the second most populous region with more than 3.3 million people, competition for a seat in an parliament at the upcoming Oct. 26 elections is high.
As Russia's attacks on Ukraine revive concerns about the security of its northwestern neighbors as well, last month's NATO summit conference took two noteworthy steps, among others, to address the Russian danger. For one, the allies authorized a new quick-response force to reassure the Baltic States-Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania - of the alliance's ability to protect them.
On Oct. 26, Ukrainians will elect their first parliament since the Maidan revolution and the Russian invasions of Crimea and Donbas. Kyiv-based political analyst Brian Mefford, now a nonresident senior fellow of the Atlantic Council, analyzes Ukrainian politics and elections on his website’s blog. Mefford’s analysis will feature on New Atlanticist and the Atlantic Council’s UkraineAlert newsletter, beginning with his reading this week of the prospects for Sunday’s vote and Ukraine’s next government.
WARSAW, Poland - A former Polish foreign minister has come under fire from the prime minister and political opponents for giving a U.S. magazine interview in which he allegedly said Russia's president offered Poland the opportunity to jointly carve up Ukraine in 2008.
WASHINGTON - The U.S. Department of Commerce will terminate a 15-year-old deal sheltering Russian flat-rolled steel producers from high import duties, it said in a letter to Russian authorities.
The Klyuyev brothers, Andriy and Serhiy, have been long-time allies of overthrown President Viktor Yanukovych.
Western leaders boast that the sanctions slapped on Russia for its invasion of Ukraine are inflicting real pain, and that's true -- even if Russia's macroeconomic indicators still don’t look worse than those of France, Italy or even Germany. But there's no indication that the punishment is having a salutary effect on Vladimir Putin. In a quick but high-profile trip to meet leaders in Milan last week, the Russian ruler was no more disposed than he has been to retreat from Ukraine or his larger neoimperialist agenda.
President Obama's failed reset and his weak response to Putin's War Against Ukraine stuck him with a reputation of indecisiveness and naïveté, reinforced by cumulating foreign policy failures. Obama, unlike Angela Merkel, members of Congress of both parties, and, lately, Hillary Clinton, still appears to be late to understand Putin's global threat and his goal to destroy NATO. With one intense bill-of-particulars against Putin, Obama coukd outline his plan to stop Putin's expansionism before it is too late. Such a move could save the last two years of Obama’s presidency. Here is what Obama should say.
Berlin -- Ukrainian government forces used cluster munitions in populated areas in Donetsk city in early Oct. 2014, Human Rights Watch said today. The use of cluster munitions in populated areas violates the laws of war due to the indiscriminate nature of the weapon and may amount to war crimes.
DONETSK -- The Ukrainian Army appears to have fired cluster munitions on several occasions into the heart of Donetsk, unleashing a weapon banned in much of the world into a rebel-held city with a peacetime population of more than one million, according to physical evidence and interviews with witnesses and victims.
Poland's parliamentary speaker, Radoslaw Sikorski, has been quoted as saying that Russian President Vladimir Putin proposed to Poland's then leader in 2008 that they divide Ukraine between themselves.