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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 263

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
Protesters Move To Topple Dzerzhinsky Statue In Zaporozhye

There are reports on Twitter that a crowd of activists has gathered in Zaporozhye to tear down a statue to Feliks Dzerzhinsky, the founder of the Cheka.

Translation: Zaporozhye now. The demolition of the statue of Dzerzhinsky.

Feliks Dzerzhinsky became the first director of the All-Russia Extraordinary Commission to Combat Counter-revolution and Sabotage, known as the Cheka, in December 1917.

Under Dzerzhinsky's leadership, tens of thousands were executed without trial, many of them in mass killings during the civil war. Hundreds of thousands were imprisoned or deported.

Pierre Vaux

The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
Ukraine's Foreign Ministry Sends Alarming Tweets About New Russian Invasion Underway
While the Ukrainian government has been repeatedly warning about an increasingly aggressive Russia for the last two weeks, none of their tweets have looked as alarming as the ones just sent by Ukraine's Ministry of Foreign Affairs:

The Izvarino border crossing (map) is on the road that leads from Krasnadon through Lugansk. It is the location where Western journalists repeatedly saw Russian troops and equipment crossing the border during the late summer, and while we cannot yet independently confirm Ukraine's claims here, it is not a surprise that this is the area which Russia would choose to use to cross more equipment into Ukraine.

Those tweets have been sent within the hour, but are perhaps not surprising based on this morning's report from the National Security and Defense Council:

The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
Intense Shelling In Lugansk Region

Novosti Donbassa reports that Hennadiy Moskal, the governor of the Lugansk region, has written on his official website that there has been intense shelling in the Lugansk region in the past day.

Moskal writes that a shell struck the grounds of School No. 15 in the village of Ivanovka on the outskirts of Gorksoye (Hirske in Ukrainian) this morning.

Fortunately, Moskal writes, the shell did not exploded and there were no children on the site at the time.

The shelling came, he says, from Pervomaysk, as separatist militants fired 30 rounds of artillery after 9:00 this morning. Three private homes on Oktyabrskaya Street were reportedly destroyed.

Later in the day, at around 15:00, Gorskoye came under bombardment again, this time with around 40 rounds from Grad MLRS. Moskal says there were no casualties.

Yesterday, Moskal claims, there were attacks with Grads, mortars and artillery on the settlements of Zolotoye, Popasnaya, Krymskoye, Olkhovaya and Stariy Aidar, The most intense shelling was directed at the Gorskoye and Popasnaya areas.

The lugansk-news.com site has created the following graphic illustrating attacks in the area (note that Ukrainian rather than Russian place-names are used):

Map-of-shelling-in-Lugansk-Region1.jpg

Ukrainska Pravda reports that the ATO Press Centre has also reported the Grad attacks last night on Ukrainian positions near Krymskoye. The report says that Ukrainian forces returned fire at the enemy firing positions.

The ATO Press Centre also announced that 7 Ukrainian paratroopers were wounded near Sokolniki, just to the east of Krymskoye, when one of them stepped on a landmine. All 7 reportedly received medical assistance.

Pierre Vaux

The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
Kremlin, Somewhat Confusingly, 'Respects' But Does Not 'Recognise' Separatist 'Elections'

Russia's state-owned RIA Novosti news agency reports that Yuriy Ushakov, an aide to President Putin, has said that Russia "respects" but does not "recognise" the November 2 separatist 'elections' in the occupied areas of the Donetsk and Lugansk regions.

On November 3, the state-owned TASS news agency reported that the Russian Foreign Ministry "considers the elections in eastern Ukraine valid."

They quoted a statement from the ministry:

“The elections in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions were held in an organized way in general and with high voter turnout,” the ministry said.

“We respect the will expression of the citizens of the south-east.”

“The elected representatives have received a mandate to solve political tasks to restore normal life in the regions,” the statement says.

Now, however, Ushakov claims that this statement does not amount to recognition of the vote, RIA Novosti reports:

"Russia's official position on the results of the elections is expressed compactly, but liberally. The word "respect" was used," Ushakov said.

When asked if the terms "respect" and "recognize" could be used equally with regard to the recent elections in eastern Ukraine, Ushakov said that "these are different words."

"The word "respect" was chosen on purpose," Ushakov stressed.

The fact that the state news outlet had used the word "valid" is not addressed by Ushakov. The semantic difference between "respecting the will expression" in the elections and recognising them as valid appears to be extremely thin.

Pierre Vaux

The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
TV Channel 112 Shows Unrelated Footage As Russian Journalist Claims Shell That Killed Teens Came From Donetsk Airport

As we've just reported, a Russian television reporter speaking to Ukrainian TV Channel 112.ua said that the shell which killed two teenagers in Donetsk came from the direction of Donetsk Airport, held by Ukrainian forces. He made this claim right before saying that some civilians had called on Putin to intervene, which resulted in him being pulled off the air (see details in our previous update below).

The report also sparked some confusion. While the report was running there were pictures of a building which had been damaged by shelling. This picture appears to be unrelated to this story. The caption on the building says that it is somewhere in the Kyivsky neighborhood, while the school is in the Kuybyshevsky neighborhood. More definitively, the video of this building do not match other videos taken from the school, nor does this match any of the surrounding buildings. In the image below, the report we've been discussing is on top, another video from the school is below that, and to the right is the Google satellite view of the area.

not-donetsk-school.jpg

It is common for news agencies like 112 to show stock footage that is unrelated, but the important point here is that there is no additional empirical evidence which relates to the school shelling for us to assess in this report.

-- James Miller

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