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Ukraine News in brief. Thursday 27 July. [Ukrainian sources]

on Thu Jul 27, 2017 11:20 am
THURSDAY

Please scroll to view news items added during the day.

HEADLINES:
US Senate approved a bill on sanctions against Russia.  Russia may send US diplomats home, in response to new sanctions. US Senator Klobuchar on Russian propaganda: "RT America was created to avoid the law of registration of foreign agents".  Donbas conflict becoming expensive problem for Russia - Volker.  US spent more than $600 million on Ukraine Army since 2014.  Russian woman wanted by the United States for laundering $ 4 billion was arrested in Greece.  Saakashvili's citizenship revoked over false filing of personal data.  Terrorists "LNR" force Lugano students in terrorist activities. Russian mercenaries in the Donbass staged terrorist attacks to accuse the Ukrainian Armed Forces. Germany intends to abandon five projects related to Russia's North Stream-2. US military equipment arrives in Georgia, which will be involved in NATO exercises involving Ukraine. Russia has used Facebook to track Macron.

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US Senate has approved a bill on sanctions against the Russia

on Thu Jul 27, 2017 11:23 am
US Senate has approved a bill on sanctions against the Russia

American senators have agreed on a new bill on sanctions against Russia, Iran and North Korea.

This was stated by the head of the Senate Committee on International Relations Bob Corker, reports Reuters.

"I am pleased to announce that we have come to an agreement that will allow us to put a bill on the table for the president," he told reporters.

Previously, the draft law on the strengthening of sanctions against the three countries was approved by the House of Representatives .

Certain problems with its approval by the Senate were caused by the fact that in the original version of the document prepared by the Senate in June, there were no provisions relating to North Korea, they were added by the House of Representatives.

The Ukrainian Embassy in the United States reported that the approved bill envisages the creation of a "Fund for counteracting Russian influence" and allocates $ 250 million to its budget for 2018-2019 fiscal years.

hromadske.ua , Original in Ukrainian / на українському


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Russia may send US diplomats in response to new sanctions

on Thu Jul 27, 2017 11:25 am
Russia may send US diplomats in response to new sanctions

The Kremlin may send a number of American diplomats and limit the maximum number of US diplomatic staff if a new package of anti-Russian sanctions is signed by President Donald Trump.

It is reported by Kommersant with reference to sources in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

According to the interlocutors of the publication, the Russian authorities can also arrest the country complex of the American embassy in Sribny Bor and their warehouses. However, the possibility of an asymmetric answer is considered.

Yes, Moscow may refuse to cooperate with Washington in critical issues for the United States, such as strengthening pressure on the DPRK.

Earlier it was reported that the US Senate agreed to a bill on sanctions against the RF and is ready to hand over it to Tramp's signature.

Previously, the draft law on the strengthening of sanctions against the three countries was approved by the House of Representatives.

hromadske.ua , Original in Ukrainian / на українському


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Donbas conflict becoming expensive problem for Russia, - Special Envoy Volker

on Thu Jul 27, 2017 11:27 am
Donbas conflict becoming expensive problem for Russia, - Special Envoy Volker

The U.S. authorities are willing to help settle the conflict in the Donbas.

This was announced by U.S. Special Envoy to Ukraine Kurt Volker, Censor.NET reports citing UNIAN.

Volker said the U.S. felt it an important task to solve this active conflict.

The U.S. is trying to be more involved in the issue, that's why Secretary of State Tillerson asked Volker to hold a meeting and to find out where they are and what to do, Volker said.

He would report about the subsequent steps and work on involving the U.S. into the matter, he said.

The special envoy believes that the ongoing conflict is becoming an expensive problem for Russia.

Volker said the status quo needs to be changed. President Trump told President Putin when the two met that solving the Ukrainian issue is important for the United States as long as it is an obstacle to Russia-U.S. relationship improvement. Secretary Tillerson also made the U.S. goals in this direction clear when he was in Kyiv.

The U.S. and its allies, as well as Russia, also agreed to that through singing the Minsk agreement. The goal of the United States is to restore Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity, as well as security of all Ukrainian citizens, regardless of nationality or religion, Volker said.

ua.censor.net.ua , Original in Ukrainian / на українському


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US Senator Klobuchar on Russian propaganda: "RT America was created to avoid the law of registration of foreign agents"

on Thu Jul 27, 2017 11:29 am
US Senator Klobuchar on Russian propaganda: "RT America was created to avoid the law of registration of foreign agents"

Broadcasting company RT America - a division of the Russian state holding RT - is registered in the USA bypassing the requirements of the law on registration of foreign agents.

According to Cenzor.NET , referring to Radio Liberty , Democrat Senator Emi Klobuchar said it during a hearing on a legal affairs committee on attempts by Russian authorities to influence the US elections.

"Our secret services have determined that Russia has tried to intervene in our elections. In January 2017, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence issued a report describing some of these attempts, in particular through news channels, saying that the Russian organization RT America was created in such a way, To avoid the law of registration of foreign agents, since it was registered as a non-profit, and not as a state organization. "

Recall that in early January, Office of the Director of National Intelligence published the unclassified part of the report on cyber attacks by Russian hackers of the presidential elections in the US. The document said that the campaign to help Republican Donald Trump win the presidential election in the United States ordered the Russian president, Vladimir Putin, to begin. US intelligence estimates that "with high probability, Putin has ordered hacking attacks to influence the elections."

ua.censor.net.ua, Original in Ukrainian / на українському


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US spent more than $600 million on Ukraine Army since 2014

on Thu Jul 27, 2017 11:32 am
US spent more than $600 million on Ukraine Army since 2014



The United States government has spent $600 million on equipment and training for the Ukrainian Armed Forces since 2014.

The data was published on the government portal, Censor.NET reports.

"Since the beginning of 2014, the American side has transferred material and technical assistance and spent more than $600 million to train the Armed Forces of Ukraine. Seven battalions of Ukrainian military have been trained within the framework of the joint multinational group, another battalion is being trained. Since 2015, nearly 4,000 servicemen of the Ukrainian Armed Forces and 104 instructors have been trained with American specialists at the base of the International Center for Peacekeeping and Security," the message reads.

Among other things, the funds received have been spent on the development of the professional sergeant corps, logistics and medical support systems, as well as on prospects of the multinational joint coordinating committee on military cooperation and defense reform.

Chief of the General Staff, Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Viktor Muzhenko says the advisory assistance provided by U.S. advisers significantly strengthens the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

In turn, Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Policy Laura Cooper assured of further support to the Armed Forces of Ukraine and fruitful cooperation between Ukraine and the U.S. in military sector.3.

ua.censor.net.ua , Original in Ukrainian / на українському


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US military equipment arrives in Georgia, which will be involved in NATO exercises involving Ukraine

on Thu Jul 27, 2017 11:35 am
US military equipment arrives in Georgia, which will be involved in NATO exercises involving Ukraine



US military equipment was delivered to Georgia, which will be used in the NATO training Noble Partner ("Distinguished Partner").

According to Tsensor.NET with reference to Georgia Online , part of the technology has already been delivered to the Vazian military airfield in the suburbs of Tbilisi.

Abrams tanks such as "M1" and "A2", as well as the Bradley infantry fighting vehicles, arrived in the port city of Poti, were taken to a train ride. American armored vehicles Stryker will travel from West Georgia to the east of the country on their own course and arrive in Vazian a little later.

Noble Partner training will be open on July 30 and will end on August 12. This is third by Noble Partner training in Georgia, and this year they will be the largest. More than 2,800 troops from Georgia, the United States, Great Britain, Germany, Turkey, Slovenia, Armenia and Ukraine will take part in them.

Training will take place at Vazian and Norio military bases.

ua.censor.net.ua , Original in Ukrainian / на українському


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Russia has used Facebook to track Macron

on Thu Jul 27, 2017 11:37 am
Russia has used Facebook to track Macron

Russian spies used fake accounts on Facebook to receive information from French acquaintances Emmanuel Macron during the election campaign.

This was reported by Reuters.

Referring to an unnamed US Congressman and other sources aware of the investigation, the publication states that two dozen accounts created by Macron's associates were "friends of friends".

The Facebook report has no data on a successful breakthrough by someone close to the president. At the same time, the social network has established that hacker tools that were associated with the Main Intelligence Department of the Russian Ministry of Defense were used to track.

Facebook confirmed to Reuters that it had fixed spy accounts in France and deactivated them. Does it mean that the accounts that spied on Macron are not specified. At the same time, it is reported that the number of accounts disabled for propaganda and spam has doubled in the pre-election period in France.

hromadske.ua, Original in Ukrainian / на українському


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Germany intends to abandon five projects related to Russia's North Stream-2

on Thu Jul 27, 2017 11:39 am
Germany intends to abandon five projects related to Russia's North Stream-2



The Federal Network Agency in Bonn requires that five projects related to the Nord Stream expansion be removed from the German gas transportation network development plan.

As informs Tsensor.NET , DW reports with reference to the press release of the regulator.

According to the agency, the prospects for their implementation are too uncertain. They will be added to the plan again when permits for the construction of the North Stream 2 will be required.

At the same time, three of these projects have not been sufficiently worked out, so the agency can not approve them yet.

In the implementation of two more projects, according to the operators of trunk pipeline networks, there is no longer any need to change plans.

"With such amendments, we are protecting German gas consumers from unnecessary costs. Expensive projects to expand the German gas transmission network should only be realized if they are really needed," said Jochen Homan, chairman of the agency.

The plan for the development of the gas transmission network is made up of two years by the operators of main pipelines, it is checked by the Federal Agency for Networks. The decision of the department on the necessary measures for the development of gas transportation networks is mandatory for operators.

ua.censor.net.ua , Original in Ukrainian / на українському


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Russian mercenaries in the Donbas staged terrorist attacks to accuse the Ukrainian Armed Forces of violating the Minsk treaties

on Thu Jul 27, 2017 11:40 am
Russian mercenaries in the Donbas staged terrorist attacks to accuse the Ukrainian Armed Forces of violating the Minsk treaties

Russian mercenaries in the Donbass are staging terrorist attacks and shelling to blame the Armed Forces of Ukraine in violation of the Minsk agreements.

As informs Tsensor.NET , this is stated in the press service of the Ministry of Defense of the Republic of Armenia on Facebook.

"In the area of ​​responsibility of 1 separate motorized infantry brigade (Kalmiusk) and 11 separate mechanized regiments (Donetsk) 1 AK the enemy carries out" preventive actions ", in particular, preparation and carrying out of provocative and staged bombardments, staging terrorist acts with further accusations of Ukrainian leadership in disruption of the Minsk agreements. "- said in a message.

The GUR noted that instructors of the intelligence units of the Russian Armed Forces are attracting representatives of Russian propaganda media to shoot provocative stories.

ua.censor.net.ua, Original in Ukrainian / на українському


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Terrorists "LNR" force Luhansk University students in terrorist activities

on Thu Jul 27, 2017 11:44 am
Terrorists "LNR" force Luhansk University students in terrorist activities

The terrorists of the "LNR" force students of the Luhansk University named after Shevchenko to take "training on fire training" at the "People's militia" field of "LNR", effectively involving them in terrorist activity.

As the Tsenzor.NET, writes about the online edition of "Islands" , and publishes photos separatist resources.





ua.censor.net.ua , Original in Ukrainian / на українському



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Saakashvili's citizenship revoked over false filing of personal data

on Thu Jul 27, 2017 11:46 am
Saakashvili's citizenship revoked over false filing of personal data

Revoking of the Ukrainian citizenship from former president of Georgia, former Odesa governor Mikheil Saakashvili is due to false information provided by him when filing for citizenship, Presidential Administration said.

Censor.NET reports citing Interfax-Ukraine.

"Upon a motion filed by the State Migration Service, which provided convincing facts about submitting inaccurate information when filing the application, the Citizenship Commission under the president of Ukraine decided to support the motion for stripping Mikheil Saakashvili of Ukrainian citizenship, and recommended the president make an appropriate decision," the press service told Interfax-Ukraine.

Based on these recommendations, the president signed an appropriate decree, the Administration said.

"In accordance with the legislation on the protection of personal data, this normative act is not subject to publication, since it contains confidential information," the presidential administration said.

On July 26, President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko on Wednesday signed the decree that deprives former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili, leader of Rulh Novykh Syl party, of his Ukrainian citizenship.

ua.censor.net.ua , Original in Ukrainian / на українському


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A Russian woman wanted by the United States for laundering $ 4 billion was arrested in Greece

on Thu Jul 27, 2017 11:48 am
A Russian woman wanted by the United States for laundering $ 4 billion was arrested in Greece



In Greece, a citizen of Russia was arrested, whom the United States is looking for on suspicion of money laundering.
According to Tsensor.NET , referring to Ukrinform , US law enforcement officers have accused her husband of laundering about $ 4 billion from 2011 by means of operations with bitcoins.

According to law enforcement officers, the suspect runs a criminal organization that manages "one of the world's largest cybercrime sites." Using the site, the suspect carried out operations with bitcoins for ransom on the Internet for hacking, drug trafficking, theft of personal data and violation of tax obligations.

The suspect was taken into custody to consider extradition in the United States. He blames all allegations.

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Putin has promised to "respond" to anti-Russian sanctions in the United States

on Thu Jul 27, 2017 2:23 pm
Putin has promised to "respond" to anti-Russian sanctions in the United States

Russian President Vladimir Putin said he would not tolerate "rudeness" of the United States and promised to respond to anti-Russian sanctions

According to Putin, Russia's response will depend on the final version of the bill, according to Russian media.

"As you know, we behave very restrained, patiently, but at some point we will have to answer. It is impossible to endure some kind of rudeness with our country," the Russian president said.

In his opinion, Russia is constantly trying to be provoked.

"The large number of diplomats were sent without explanation, then they took away the diplomatic property, which contradicts the norms of international law," Putin said.

Let's remind, the House of Representatives of the USA the overwhelming majority has supported a bill which considerably will extend sanctions against Russia.

Because of them, eight projects with the participation of European companies can be affected.

The Kremlin reacted to sanctions and called them an extremely sad fact.

The European Commission expressed concern about the new US sanctions against Russia and their possible "unpredictable, one-sided" implications for the EU economy.

espreso.tv, Original in Ukrainian / на українському


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The President of Finland has called Putin to release Ukrainian hostages

on Thu Jul 27, 2017 2:28 pm
The President of Finland has called Putin to release Ukrainian hostages

Finnish President Saulius Ninistento met with Vladimir Putin and asked him to release Ukrainian hostages
This is reported by Helsingin Sanomat.

"We also spoke about the situation in Ukraine which is not improving. The first task is to leave a truce and move forward, at least in small steps, for example, the release of hostages," said the President of Finland.

Today, Russian President Vladimir Putin arrived in the city of Savonlinna in Finland with an official visit. During the meeting, the Presidents discussed international issues and bilateral relations.

Before the arrival of Putin, the Finnish police asked inhabitants of Savonlinna to close the windows and balconies during the visit of the Russian president.

espreso.tv , Original in Ukrainian / на українському



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In Latvia, two Russians who spied on NATO trainings were sentenced

on Thu Jul 27, 2017 4:31 pm
In Latvia, two Russians who spied on NATO training were sentenced

The court in Latvia made a final decision on the case of two Russian citizens who entered the Adazi military base in 2015
This is reported by Mixnews.lv.

In addition to the Russians, Alexander Kurkin and Andriy Popka, the aide was accused of the Latvian pro-Russian figure Vladimir Linderman.

According to him, he was found innocent, and Russians were found guilty of hooliganism. They were sentenced to almost 4 years' imprisonment.

As indicated, convicted persons have already resigned this term due to the expiration of the term of arrest. But all the same, the defense intends to appeal.

In 2015, Kurkin and Popko entered the Latvian military base of Adazi, where the NATO Saber Strike 2015 military exercises were attended by US troops.

espreso.tv, Original in Ukrainian / на українському


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Why Trump accused Ukraine of "sabotaging" the US elections?

on Thu Jul 27, 2017 5:50 pm
Why Trump accused Ukraine of "sabotaging" the US elections?

On July 25, US President Donald Trump stated that Ukrainian interference in American elections, unlike Russia, is not being investigated. He accused Jeff Sessions of the United States Prosecutor General of the United States. "GORDON" briefly tells of what Ukrainian intervention Trump says, and why, according to the American media, he criticizes the Attorney General, who himself put forward this position.

Two tweets criticized by the US Attorney General Jeff Sessions appeared at Twitter's American president today at about 6:00 local time (approximately at 13:00 in Kiev). In the first Trump , Ukraine claims that during the election campaign, Ukraine tried to "push" the Democratic Party candidate Hillary Clinton.

"Ukrainian attempts to sabotage the Trump campaign -" quietly work to push Clinton. "So where is the prosecutor general's investigation?" - he wrote.



On the second tweet, the US president wrote that Sessions was "very weak" about "Hillary Clinton crimes," referring to an investigation into the use of personal mail by the FBI for official purposes.

Donald Trump does not detail the allegations against Ukraine, but NBC News  believes that it is about the information contained in The Politico in the middle of January this year. The article argued that officials from the Ukrainian government tried to help Hillary Clinton win the election because Trump, in their opinion, was not suitable for such work.

According to the publication, the materials of the Ukrainian investigation into the so-called case of "black bookkeeping" of the Party of Regions, which included the head of the election campaign, Paul Manafort, were distributed just to help the Democrat candidate. In addition, the source said that one of the consultants of the National Committee of the Democratic Party met with Ukrainian senior officials at the Ukrainian Embassy in Washington to reveal the links between Trump and Manafort with Russia.

Two weeks ago, the press secretary of the White House, Sarah Sanders, announced the need to investigate the "Ukrainian intervention." The Washington Times journalist suggested that Sanders said about Ukraine, trying to avoid questioning the sister of Trump Jared Kushner with a Russian lawyer in search of compromise on Clinton. The White House spokesman talked about the meeting of Ukrainian officials with representatives of the Democratic Party as a proven fact, although the Ukrainian embassy in the United States refuted this information.

Why Donald Trump mentioned the publication of The Politico right now is not clear. The Washington Post  believes this is part of a campaign against US Attorney General Jeff Sells. A week ago, in an interview with The New York Times, the president said that the decision of the Attorney General to move away from supervising the investigations of Trump's headquarters relations with Russia was "very unjust." Trump said that he would nominate another person to the post of head of the ministry, if he knew that Sessions would do so.

Now, according to The Washington Post, the future of Sessions, who was one of Trump's most influential and trusted allies since the first days of the campaign, was in jeopardy. A reviewer of the Gizmodo portal, Matt Novak, notes that attacks on Sessions may signal Trump's desire to resign ( New York mayor Rudolph Giuliani may become the new justice minister ) or to force the Attorney General to open an investigation against Clinton.

At the same time, Novak noticed that the morning messages of Trump on Twitter largely repeat the plots featured in the morning show on the Fox channel, the favorite channel of the American president. "It's easy to forget that the president is a man who is subordinate to 17 intelligence agencies, but he seems to spend the morning without doing anything other than watching television. It would be ridiculous if it was not so dangerous," the journalist quoted.

gordonua.com , Original in Ukrainian / на українському  


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Moldovan court finds President Dodon's referendum plan unconstitutional

on Thu Jul 27, 2017 6:38 pm
Moldovan court finds President Dodon's referendum plan unconstitutional


Moldova's Constitutional Court has ruled that a move by President Igor Dodon to hold a referendum that could broaden his powers is unconstitutional, according to Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty.



Constitutional Court judge Tudor Pantiru announced the ruling on July 27, saying that the questions that are to be posed in the referendum "are beyond presidential authority," RFE/RL wrote. The pro-Russian Dodon signed a decree in March calling for a nationwide referendum on September 24 in which Moldovans would be asked whether the president should be allowed to dissolve parliament and announce early elections.....................

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Moscow Considers Trump Too Weak to Be Useful

on Thu Jul 27, 2017 7:09 pm
Moscow Considers Trump Too Weak to Be Useful

The US House of Representatives has with an overwhelming majority passed a bill reinforcing sanctions on Russia, Iran and North Korea, and the Senate seems ready to approve the bill this week. Russian state news agencies report that US President Donald Trump may have no other option but to sign the bill, though it will bar him from easing sanctions without Congressional approval in the future (Interfax, July 27). The Russian reaction to the new sanction legislation has been extremely angry: Trump has been accused of being too weak to control the “Russophobic US establishment.” The media has claimed that the Kremlin has been extremely tolerant in its response to “US provocations,” expecting that Trump would eventually put his act together and change the “negative dynamic of the US-Russian relations” as he promised during his presidential election campaign in 2016. However, the US Congress now seems to have made that impossible, while Trump himself has been making one mistake after another. The mass-circulation daily Moskovsky Komsomolets implies that Trump may have been a good real-estate manager, but he seems not to be up to the level of running the US presidency and his administration is constantly in crisis. Moscow had previously given up any hope to improve relations with Washington during the Barack Obama administration. It waited for a replacement administration to emerge and had high hopes placed on Trump that seem now to be teetering out—the United States apparently is unwilling to rebuild relations while Russian President Vladimir Putin is in power; both Moscow and Washington treat each other as enemies and are falling back to military-based mutual deterrence mode (MK.ru, July 26).

According to Russian Senator Frantz Klintsevich, “a new Cold War may begin” and the possibility of cooperation between Moscow and Washington will be forfeited if the bill on sanctions becomes law (MilitaryNews, July 26). According to the Chair of the Federation Council’s (upper house of parliament) Foreign Relations Committee, Konstantin Kosachev, the official Russian reaction must follow after the sanctions bill becomes law and “must pain the Americans.” Kosachev implied that Trump personally is opposed to the sanction bill, “but he is demoralized and lacks political will to resist.” Russia hopes to find common ground with the European Union, which has expressed misgivings about the US sanction bill, and possibly jointly oppose Washington. “The Europeans are not our friends, but if their economic interests are infringed, they may decide to do something,” continued Kosachev (interfax-russia, July 26).

Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov, the top Russian diplomat in charge of US-Russian relations, accused enemies of Russia in the United States of deliberately worsening relations. Moscow will now treat Washington “as a source of danger,” continued Ryabkov. At the same time, bad Russophobes in Washington, according to Ryabkov, want to undermine the decision-making power of the Trump administration (TASS, July 26)........................

Access complete text of the editorial:  jamestown.org In English


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‘Moscow Losing Control in Transnistria,’ Russian Paper Says

on Thu Jul 27, 2017 10:29 pm
‘Moscow Losing Control in Transnistria,’ Russian Paper Says

The flight of the former Transdniestrian president to Chisinau coming after Moldova’s erection of customs posts on Ukrainian territory on the border of the unrecognized republic and Chisinau’s expulsion of five Russian diplomats has sparked fears in Tiraspol and Moscow that Russia is “losing control” of the situation there, Gazeta reports.

The flight of former Transdniestria president Yevgeny Shevchuk form Tiraspol to Chisinau changes the dynamics in the breakaway republic, Aleksandr Rybin says, thus making it more likely that those with economic interests there will press for reorienting the republic away from Moscow (gazeta.ru/politics/2017/07/16_a_10790108.shtml#page4).

That is especially true now, the newspaper’s Aleksandr Rybin says, because with the new customs posts on Ukrainian territory, Chisinau can institute an effective blockade of Transdniestria that will hurt its already-hard-pressed economy in ways that Moscow will not be able to do anything about.

And that in turn will mean that Moscow’s pleasure in the election of a pro-Russian president in Moldova will prove to be almost meaningless because the Moldovan government which has the real power in the country is pressing ahead with its pro-Western program of European integration and distancing that country from Russia.

Given all this, Rybin says, a situation close to “panic” has arisen in Transdniestria. According to one source near the leadership of the unrecognized republic, “Russia if one speaks honestly now does not decide anything in Transdniestria. It has isolated itself from the processes which are taking place in the region” and is paying a price as a result.

Indeed, the source continues, “the orientation toward Russia in Transdniestria is only for show. Tomorrow the republic may easily reorient itself toward the European Union” and away from Moscow. That is because as a result of Moscow’s failure to respond to Chisinau’s actions, economics rather than politics is driving decisions and hence working against Russia now.

Some in Moscow both at the foreign ministry and in the Duma are alarmed, but they have not acted yet. Perhaps something will emerge at talks next month between the sides in the conflict, but given Moscow’s weakened position, Rybin suggests, no one can assume that Russia will win out then.

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Kremlin Views Russian Nationalism as a CIA ‘Project,’

on Thu Jul 27, 2017 10:33 pm
Kremlin Views Russian Nationalism as a CIA ‘Project,’

The Kremlin because of its Soviet-KGB background views Russian nationalism as the work of the CIA and other Western intelligence services but at the same time fears that a deracinated non-ethnic civic nation would not be capable of mobilizing Russians in a crisis, according to Yegor Prosvirnin, the editor of the now-blocked Sputnik i pogrom portal.

In an interview with Rosbalt’s Sofya Mokhova, the outspoken Russian nationalist says that he is convinced the Presidential Administration closed his site because it fears that the Russian nationalist message is reaching too many Russians and particularly members of the elite (rosbalt.ru/russia/2017/07/27/1633802.html).

Indeed, he argues, members of the elite are more likely to be attracted to the nationalist cause because they understand as ordinary people do not the real problems that people of other nationalities present to business, society and politics; and that is why, he continues, he has directed his site and his efforts precisely at the elite rather than at a mass audience.

That is especially disturbing to the Kremlin elite, “a cast of former and current coworkers of the KGB and FSB who have a very specific paranoid mentality. They consider their main enemy – don’t laugh! – Russian nationalism” which they view as “a project of Western special services” who orchestrated the disintegration of the USSR.

Because this is so, Prosvirnin says, “any attempt by the authorities to make friends with nationalism is always a political technological trick in which they themselves do not believe.”

According to the nationalist activist, “liberal nationalism is the natural worldview for any present-day urban Russian resident under 40. And the higher the individual’s level of education, the more he or she will be inclined to national ideas.” Prosvirnin says his portal was thus “mainstream, but mainstream among a generation which is not now decisive.”

The authorities can “close Sputnik, put [him] in prison, but issues about human rights about the nation and a nation state which provided the side with its population will not be diminished thereby. If the Kremlin stops one young person from shouting “the emperor has no clothes,” someone will take his place. Moreover, closing the site won’t put clothes on the ruler.”

Tragically, he continues, Russians are limited by the understanding of nationalism that existed in Soviet time, one completely different from those in the West. Moreover, Russians “who grew up in a society so deformed as to consider ‘positive discrimination’ the norm naturally understand by ‘nationalism’ some completely wild things.”

Russians need to understand how others understand nationalism, Prosvirnin argues, and hence he says that “a Russian nationalist must know English because in English, a reasonable conversation about nationalism is possible, easy and acceptable but in Russian” it still is not given the Soviet terms still around.

“I agree,” he tells his interviewer, “that the Russian Federation is very much lagging behind the civilized world.” Nationalists are coming to power everywhere in the advanced Wesst, but “only in backward, provincial Russia are backward provincial journalists who don’t read the key publications of the first world in the original and still believe in globalization, friendship of the peoples and other ideals of the hippies.”

The Russian regime has become especially concerned about national identity as a result of its experience in Syria. The KGB types in the Kremlin “are not entirely fools and understand that there are no ‘multi-national Russians’” just as there are no Syrians, an artificial identity if there ever was one.

But these KGB officers think that they can “build a nation” via the construction of “a total state, hoping that tightening the screws will save them. It won’t. A state without a nation is always very rickety and weak,” the nationalist editor says.

His interviewer then asks him to define his terms. “Nationalism,” he points out, “is a relatively recent phenomenon which began after the Westphalian world and achieved maturity only in the 19th century, the classical period of nation states. There were no nations and could not be any nations before book printing and mass education which allowed for the spread of identities.”

In addition, Prosvirnin continues, “one should distinguish between a people (an ethno-cultural community) and a nation (a cultural-political one). A nation becomes fully itself when it acquires economic, political and media-educational institutions. The striving of a people for control over institutions and its transformation into a nation is called nationalism.”

windowoneurasia2.blogspot.co.uk


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