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The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
Ukraine Liveblog Day 185

Publication: Ukraine Liveblogs
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The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
Akhmetov Coal Mine Re-Opens After Damage from Shelling
After fighting in Khrashchuvata and Novosvetlivka (in Ukrainian Khriaschuvate and Novosvitlivka), there were reports of damage to several coal mines owned by Ukrainian oligarch Rinat Akhmetov.

On August 18, Russian-backed rebels reportedly opened fire with Grad missile on a convoy of refugees traveling between these two towns, killing more than a dozen, the Kyiv Post reported. Separatists denied responsibility, claiming Ukrainian forces were behind the rocket attack.

Ukrainian government spokesmen said fighting continued in the cities of Zhdanivka, Makiyivka, Khartsyzsk, Debaltsevo and Starobesheve; the Kyiv Post said rebels in Yasnyuvata were taking Ukrainian artillery fire.

Metinvest, owner of Krasnodon Coal's Samsonovskaya-Zapadnaya mine, published a press release on its web site dated August 20, saying that the mine had re-opened after a shut-down for two days when electricity was lost due to shell attacks:

The Samsonovskaya-Zapadnaya mine was cut off from electricity supplies on August 17 as a result of artillery shelling.

At the same time, the situation remains extremely tense. The armed conflict is still ongoing near where the mine is located in the area of the Novohannivka, Khryaschuvate and Novosvitlivka settlements.



Akhmetov's System Capital Management Group (SCM), is a major share-holder of Metavest, Ukraine's largest private business and one of the larger steel businesses in Europe; Akhmetov owns 75% of SCM.

Earlier DTEK, Ukraine's largest energy company, another property of SCM, published a press release July 15 saying that it was forced to close six coal companies in Lugansk due to fighting.

On July 10, a bus carrying coal miners to work came under mortar file, with several killed and more than 20 injured, said DTEK.

Because of Akhmetov's considerable business interests in the Donbass, there has been constant media speculation about his role in the conflict. In June he paid bonuses to his workers in Maripuol to keep them from joining the separatists, and had them patrol the streets following an attack by separatists.

There have also been allegations of direct support to separatists which Akhmetov has denied. Russian journalists have continued to draw a connection between Akhmetov and separatist leader Aleksandr Khodakovsky.



The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
New Video Shows Russian Military Hardware Moving Toward Ukraine

These types of videos should now be familiar to our readers. This video, uploaded today, was taken in Rostov-on-Don, Russia (exactly here) and shows a train loaded with a significant amount of Russian armor headed west, towards the border with Ukraine.

The location is confirmed (the road, railways, hardware store, street signs and other details all match). There is no record that the video was ever uploaded before late yesterday (the video was apparently taken yesterday evening and was uploaded this morning).  

Again, this is another sign that for all of the talk of a diplomatic breakthrough between Moscow and Kiev, Moscow continues to prepare for an outright invasion, or at least the continuation of the slow-motion invasion which has been happening since late June.

The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
Pro-Ukrainian Mystery Painters Strike Again in Moscow

An electrical tower in Moscow has been painted in the blue and yellow colors of the Ukrainian flag, gazeta.ru reported.

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The electrical transmission tower in the southwest district of Moscow on Remizova Street near the Nagornaya metro stop has been painted by unknown persons.

Four other people were put under house arrest pending trial on charges of "hooliganism" for painting the star atop the Stalin-era building on Kotelnicheskaya Embankment.

The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
Saur Mogila War Memorial In Eastern Ukraine Destroyed By Months Of Fighting
For months, pro-Russian Twitter accounts decried the apparent shelling of the Saur Mogila war monument in eastern Ukraine (map). Those voices lessened when evidence began to emerge that it may have been the separatists themselves who may have been doing at least some of the shelling of the war memorial just to blame the Ukrainian government. Regardless, in recent weeks the area around the war memorial has become a warzone as the Ukrainian government captured the area from separatists, and it now appears that the war memorial has finally collapsed.
The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
Poroshenko Will Ask Putin To Urge Militants to 'Withdraw' From Ukraine

Next Tuesday Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, Russian President Vladimir Putin, and other European leaders will meet to discuss the violence in Eastern Ukraine. Poroshenko has released a statement that may suggest that he will not accept a ceasefire without the withdrawal of Russian troops who are already fighting in eastern Ukraine:

At the meeting in Minsk, President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko is willing to hold negotiations on peace, for "the whole world is tired of war".

"Ukraine strives for peace," the President said in the course of the working visit to Mykolaiv. He informed that on August 26, together with a "powerful team" consisting of 3 high EU representatives, he "is going to Minsk to speak of peace".

The President informed that Ukraine "will urge to withdraw militants from its territory" at the meeting. "I am confident that we will manage to achieve that," Petro Poroshenko stressed.

The Head of State noted: "To have a strong negotiating position on peace, we must be strong, have the unity of people, a powerful country and a strong army".

"We are capable of defending our sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity. Today, we are fighting for the independence of Ukraine. We will certainly win," the President emphasized.

Earlier today, while visiting a state enterprise, the Gas Turbine Research and Production Complex "Zorya"-"Mashproekt," Poroshenko also made statements about Ukraine's territorial integrity:

"We will not let anyone call into question the sovereignty and territorial integrity of our state. Our state doesn't threaten anyone. It is peaceful and doesn't want to make war," the President said.

So while a diplomatic breakthrough has been heralded by the media this week, the bottom line is that it appears President Poroshenko is standing firm on key demands -- that the Russian military must stop its aggression, and that the separatists will have to stand down and allow the Ukrainian government to regain control of the east.

Every day since the diplomatic 'breakthrough' was announced Russia has sent more arms and fighters across the border. There are continued reports that each day Russian artillery, based on Russian soil, has bombarded Ukrainian territory. And just today evidence has surfaced that Russian airborne units are already making war deep inside Ukraine. So it remains to be seen how willing Putin will be to withdraw his troops from eastern Ukraine.


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