I think most people now are trying to figure out how to play Ukrainian hard currency debt – it has come a huge distance in such a short space of time, which really does reflect the generosity of the deal announced last week for bondholders. Just to recap, bonds have rallied from 40 cents back in the spring when plans to “restructure” were first mooted, to 55 cents just before the deal announcement last week, and now to 75 cents. I don’t think that this is particularly a call on the Ukraine reform story, simply that this deal was much better than expected for bondholders
The Ukrainian community in Canada with 1.2 million members is not only the most active, but also the most influential among the Ukrainians in the diaspora. She has delivered amazing performances in the free society of Canada and gained political leadership positions at all levels. Because of their special position in Canada, the diaspora could mobilize the Government of Canada to a significant support of Ukraine and influence the development of Ukraine as a reform accelerator: during the Orange Revolution and the Euromaidan and now in defense against the Russian threat. Besides the consideration of the electoral potential of the Ukrainian diaspora, the Canadian government is pursuing in Ukraine also own economic, political and security-related interests.
On Sept. 2, the World Health Organization announced that two Ukrainian children were paralyzed by polio. These cases were the first incidences of polio recorded on European soil since 2010, and were attributed to a vaccine-derived virus mutation.
The biggest impact of most kinds of corruption is an emptier pocket from the victim having to pay a bribe. But health-care corruption can cost lives — and it is rampant across the former Soviet Union.
At present, the government’s proposal at a radically changed tax policy is the main issue of economic discussion. This proposal is basically right and deserves all support. The fundamental problem with Ukraine’s public finance is that public expenditures have persistently been far too large. In 2014, Ukraine had public expenditures of 53 percent of gross domestic product, while successful fast-growing countries in the neighborhood (Lithuania, Latvia, Slovakia, Bulgaria and Romania) had public expenditures of about 35% of GDP, which should the Ukraine’s target.
An article on Russian state-funded Sputnik International asserts that criticism of the Soviet past, including Joseph Stalin, is part of a US and NATO attack on "today's Russia and its leadership that is unwilling to bow before the West." Although the words are those of the 'expert' interviewed, they gel ominously with a recent article from Russia's Minister of Culture Vladimir Medinsky effectively defending Stalin's role in the country's history. This new accusation of "blatant falsification of history used as a traditional Cold War tool" comes a year after a Russian decree closed access to almost all archival records on the KGB and its secret police predecessors for another 30 years.
Russia's Investigative Committee has claimed that "the situation in the south-east of Ukraine is nothing less than genocide of the Russian-speaking population" and that, therefore, in accordance with international law "it cannot stand on the side-line". The Investigative Committee's 'criminal investigations' include those against former pilot and Ukrainian MP Nadiya Savchenko whose release has been demanded by all European structures and the international community.
It could be a story written by Ray Bradbury or George Orwell. Or the basis for a fantasy book by Michel Houellebecq. But this story is not an illusion, nor a nightmare. It is not a joke – it is reality.
The source of numerous wars and conflicts is taking over what is supposed to be the source of diplomacy and peace: The Russian Federation is taking over the presidency of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC).
Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev has imprisoned nearly 100 journalists, human rights advocates, religious believers and opposition figures in the past several years, transforming his regime from a soft autocracy into one of Eurasia's harshest police states. Few of those he has dispatched have shamed him as thoroughly, and as tellingly, as Khadija Ismayilova.
Azerbaijan's leaders want to bury the truth about their crimes - and those who report it. Europe and the UN are letting them get away with it.
Russia's President Vladimir Putin is currently in Beijing to attend a celebration of the 70th anniversary of Allied Powers' victory over Japan in World War II. Putin will try to use his trip to China - the 24th in his long tenure as leader - to enhance economic and political ties between the two countries. This time, however, that seems to be far more problematic than ever before.
Since the Ukrainian crisis began, relations between Russia and the West have deteriorated rapidly to lows not seen since the Cold War. From speeches by Putin lambasting the degeneracy of the West and critiquing its place in the world order, to those by the Obama administration blasting Russia’s attempt to revert to a supposedly long-since abandoned foreign policy based on geographic spheres of influence; from provocative flight paths by Russian military planes to the newly re-discovered martial rhetoric of some political and military leaders in the West; from fears in Russia of a West-led colour revolution to overwrought hand-wringing in the West concerning Russia’s edge in the propaganda wars — all grounds for calm and compromise appear to be slipping away apace.
Each summer, as part of ongoing efforts to influence their young, Russia’s government leaders and propagandists head to a conference center on the Klyazma River about 130 miles northeast of Moscow to address the “Terra Scientia” Russian Youth Education Conference.
Bondholders cheering Ukraine's debt swap face the risk that Kiev will return to the bargaining table within a few years, following the path Greece trod after its 2012 restructuring.
In George Orwell's classic novel of totalitarianism, 1984, Big Brother, the ruler of the state, doled out "two minutes of hate" each day, perhaps calculating that that amount would keep people on edge and in line but not send them over the edge into dangerous pathologies of aggression and violence.
As the country celebrates anniversary of independence from USSR, Jaroslav Gritsak argues that an independent judiciary is more important than the removal of statues.
The West pressures Kyiv to abide by a deal that Moscow violates every day.
If you want to enrage Vladimir Putin, publish an article on Russian casualties in Ukraine. Putin unequivocally declared, on his Direct Line broadcast to the Russian people on April 16, that "the question of whether Russian troops are present in Ukraine…I can tell you outright and unequivocally that there are no Russian troops in Ukraine."
Russia and the occupation regime in Crimea are currently holding a number of Ukrainians prisoner on entirely fabricated charges. Some of them have already been declared political prisoners by the renown Memorial Human Rights Centre, for example, Nadiya Savchenko; Oleg Sentsov; Oleksandr Kolchenko and Gennady Afanasyev. Others are simply held in detention, with all those in Russia having been in custody for over a year. There is enormous secrecy over some of the cases, but every reason to believe that in each, the charges are entirely fabricated.