Western media started circulating information on necessity to provide Ukraine with lethal weapons. The New York Times published an article yesterday saying that the US government is considering the possibility to supply weapons to Ukraine. According to the paper, American General Philip Breedlove, the NATO Supreme Allied Commander Europe, fully supports setting the process of supplying Kyiv with defensive weapons in motion. British newspaper The Guardian also published an article explaining why only aggression can be a response to Putin’s aggression. A group of eight former US diplomats and servicemen published a report in which they urged the America government and the NATO authorities to support Ukraine. Nevertheless, the chance for such a step is insignificant – though Barak Obama spoke of Russian aggression and the necessity to stop it in his interview to CNN, he confined himself to proposals of diplomatic character. Angela Merkel has not supported shipments of arms either. This issue may arise the next week again, the cause being Barak Obama and Angela Merkel’s meeting on Monday, February 9.
Joint statement of militants’ leaders Zakharchenko and Plotnitskyi on their readiness to break off the offensive, settling the actual line of demarcation, combined with Zakharchenko’s statement of holding full mobilization might be a sign that militants, considering their huge losses nearby Debaltseve and Uglegorsk, are beginning to blackmail Ukrainian authorities in order to strengthen their positions and allow a brief respite before the spring comes.
ACTIONS IN THE ATO ZONE
Analysis of the situation on Debaltseve Salient from Yuriy Butusov. Information from a deputy Taras Pastukh that “the National Guard has left Debaltseve” lead to another round of panicky rumours, when in reality the deputy meant that the subdivision set off for another battle mission and there were no grounds for panick. The National Geard has already contradicted their retreat from Debaltseve and asked mass-media to use only trustworthy information and refrain from spreading rumours. Dmytro Tymchuk informed earlier that terrorists broke off the offensive on Debaltseve and are retreating to Uglegorsk. Butusov says huge losses among the terrorists and growing level of internal demoralization of troops being one of the reasons. The Ministry of Internal informed that there was trench war in progress in Uglegorsk.
Advisor for the Head of the Ministry of Internal Zoryan Shkiryak informed there were unprecedented attacks from the Russian-terrorist troops for the past 8 days in the area of Debaltseve salient. Kremlin deployed about 4 thousand militants and soldiers, as well as officers of elite subdivisions of the Russian army in this direction, over 30 tanks, around 80 armoured vehicles, 50 Grad MLRS, barrel artillery and self-propelled artillery systems.
Militants’ chief Aleksandr Zakharchenko announced full mobilization within 10-days period. “Whike there still is time before the spring, new units will receive military training. We expect to get at least five additional brigades through mobilization – three motorized rifle brigades, one artillery and one tank brigade. This is the reserve which guarantees we can withstand any blow. We will meet them (i.e., Ukrainian troops) in different composition by the spring”, – quotes “Donetsk News Agency”. The terrorist Strelkov asked to draft him to the DPR army. Leaders of the DPR and LPR militants Aleksandr Zakharchenko and Igor Plotnitskyi informed in their joint statement of their readiness to break off the offensive and settle the actual line of demarcation.
PEACEFUL SETTLEMENT OF THE CRISIS
British historian advises the West to arm Ukraine, provide it with financial aid and defeat Russian propaganda on the pages of TheGuardian periodical. Timothy Garton Ash compares Vladimir Putin with Slobodan Milosevic, emphasizing that there are no foul blows for him. It is exactly why the West should arm Ukraine. “Only when Ukrainian army is able to restrain Russian army, will negotiations be possible. Sometimes cannons are needed to stop cannons. Will it make Russian paranoia of being surrounded by enemies stronger? Yes, it will! But Putin is already feeding this paranoia, neglecting the facts. Recently he told students in Sankt-Petersburg that Ukrainian army is the NATO legion”, – the article says.
The Chancellor of Germany Angela Merkel excluded shipments of arms to Ukraine and laid emphasis on the necessity to settle the conflict in Donbas peacefully. Obama’s administration explained why the USA is not in a hurry to supply lethal weapons to Ukraine. The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Germany Frank-Walter Steinmeier recommended the USA to refuse from supplying weapons to Ukraine. It was reported earlier that a group of eight former USA diplomats and servicemen published a report urging the American government and the NATO authorities to support Ukraine, including shipments of lethal arms.
ACTIVITY OF THE PARLIAMENT. WORK OF THE GOVERNMENT.
Hroysman informed that Verkhovna Rada had already received about a dozen letters requesting to call off the signatures under the application on Vitaliy Yarema’s dismissal.
The Opposition Block faction is suggesting conducting direct negotiations with Russia on the situation in Donbas. it also suggests holding joint parliamentary hearing with the State Duma of the Russian Federation on the conflict.
Ukraine is not acting promptly enough to prevent financial catastrophy, – warns the EBRD Managing Director for Eastern Europe and Caucasus Francis Malige.
SITUATION IN DONBASЯ НА ДОНБАССЕ.
Donetsk regional state administration is studying the possibility to disconnect Donetsk from electricity supply, informed the head of the region in his interview to Ostrov web-site.
THE STATE AND THE FINANCIAL INDUSTRIAL GROUPS. ATTEMPTS OF THE ECONOMY REDISTRIBUTION
Gdf Media Limited and Inter Media Group Limited companies (controlled by Gdf Media Limited) accumulated 100% of shares of Inter TV-channel, informs the press-service of the company. “Gdf Media Limited and Inter Media Group Limited companies purchased minority shares pachages of the PJSC Inter TV-channel. The corresponding changes have been registered at the state registration agencies of Ukraine”, – it says.
Yuriy Butsa, a son of former first deputy minister of defence, became one of the members of the National committee on securities and the stock market. Bohdan Butsa was suspected of being involved into kidnappings. Yuriy Butsa used to work at the NCSSM before.
Former head of the state company Ukrspetsekspot Bondarchuk is suspected of embezzlement of 7.4 million dollars. Bondarchuk’s lawyer Anatoliy Bashlovka says that political motives are the main reason in his client’s case and he sees influence of the president Petro Poroshenko here.
The Prosecutor-General’s Office is working on the information of the alleged proposal of the oligarch Rinat Akhmetov to the defenders of heat thermal plant in Shchastya town from Aidar batallion.
OTHER IMPORTANT NEWS.
Th EU is liftng sanctions off the former Head of the Security Service of Ukraine Yakymenko, Oleksiy Azarov, Viktor Yanukovych-Jr., Dmytro Tabachnyk, Olena Lukash and Serhiy Klyuev, informed the people’s deputy Serhiy Leshchenko, referring to his sources in the EU.
The Prosecutor-General Vitsliy Yarema informed that a judge of Pecherskyi court Serhiy Vovk who had been conducting the case of the head of the BPP faction Yuriy Lutsenko was served charges.
Roskosmos will stop purchasing Zenit rockerts produced by Dnipropetrovsk plant Pivdenmashzavod, stated Roskosmosmofficisl spokesman Igor Burenkov.
The Security Service of Ukraine suspected a deputy of Mykolayiv regional council of separatism.
The Russian South Military District started full-scale encampment with subdivisions of radiation, chemical and biological defence, the Russian Ministry of Defence press-service informs.