Ukraine: meetings and harsh reality
Angela Merkel and Francois Hollande are trying to mediate between Ukrainian President Poroshenko and Russian president Putin to stop the bloodshed in Eastern Ukraine where nobody observes the cease-fire. On the contrary the fighting intensifies each day. The UN estimates that there have been more than 5,300 killed and almost one million displaced people since last April.
Ukraine will have gas for the winter, Poroshenko says
President Pedro Poroshenko announced that Ukraine will have Russian gas for the winter after his meetings with Russian president Vladimir Putin in Milan. Gazprom CEO said that Ukraine has agreed to all terms set by Russia to reach the agreement. The two leaders didn’t make much progress in the peace process in eastern Ukraine. In Donetsk, the rebels have said that they are ready to stop firing if Russia acts as a guarantor of security in the region.
Putin wants more weapons and more control over them
Russian President Putin recalled in a speech that Russia have allocated more than 613,6 billion dollars for the armament programme for 2011-2021, nine times the sum allocated for the previous period that was 67 billion. He also announced that the Military Industrial Commission will now answer directly to him.
Putin, Kiev and NATO
Russian president Vladimir Putin said in a phone conversation with the head of European Commission, Jose Manuel Durao Barroso, that he can take Kiev in two weeks if he want. But the Kremlin says Putin’s remarks were taken out of the context and had a very different meaning, according to Russian media.
Putin and the Ukrainian border
Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko met with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin in Minsk on Wednesday. They shook hands and talked about the Russian paratroopers recently detained in Ukraine among other things. Putin tried to diminish importance to the incident saying it was an isolated mistake. But just next day have been reports of rebels backed by Russian soldiers entering in one town in southeastern Ukraine. The border is extremely porous.
Ukraine and Russia
The Ukrainian crisis reached today a new dangerous level of escalation. According to Russian media, early Sunday a cross border shelling hit a private home in a town called Donetsk situated in the southern Russian Rostov Region killing a Russian man and wounding two women. Russian authorities blamed the Ukrainian forces and said their country will give a tough response to the shelling of its territory.
Putin and the Ukrainian elections
Putin has changed a bit his discourse on Ukraine and now says that “the presidential election the Kiev authorities plan to hold is a step in the right direction”.
Putin on the fast track
Six days after the referendum Putin has signed the act of annexation of Crimea and added to the territory of the Russian Federation the new administrative region and the port city of Sevastopol. As it was predictable Russia annexed Crimea quickly without too much effective opposition on the part of the international community apart from some bearable sanctions and speeches of condemnation.
Putin and Ukraine
Putin is acting as if Crimea was a Russian territory. Let’s see what will do with the rest of the Ukraine.
Russians flags in Crimea
Russian flags have been hoisted in the Parliament and the Government buildings seized by armed men in the Ukrainian autonomous republic of Crimea while the Ukrainian interim president warns that any movement of armed Russian troops outside the naval base of Sevastopol would be seen as a military aggression.