Ukraine: Daily Briefing – August 1, 2017, 6 PM Kyiv time

Ukraine: Daily Briefing
August 1, 2017, 6 PM Kyiv time
Platoon movement and live fire exercise, Yavoriv, Ukraine. Photo – US Army Europe

1. Russian Invasion of Ukraine
The General Staff of Ukraine’s Armed Forces reported at 12:30 PM Kyiv time that in the last 24 hours, no Ukrainian soldiers were killed and five Ukrainian soldiers were wounded in action.  Towards Donetsk, Russian-terrorist forces shelled Ukrainian positions near Avdiivka and Luhanske village with grenade launchers. Towards Mariupol, Russian-terrorist forces shelled Ukrainian positions at Pavlopil and Shyrokyne with grenade launchers. Towards Luhansk, Russian-terrorist forces shelled Ukrainian positions at Krymske with mortars. Near Novooleksandrivka and Popanse, Russian-terrorist forces fired on Ukrainian positions. At Novotoshkivsk, Russian-terrorist forces shelled Ukrainian positions with grenade launchers.
2. Canada-Ukraine Free Trade Agreement comes into force
The Canada-Ukraine Free Trade Agreement (CUFTA) came into force today. For opportunities offered by the CUFTA, please see the Government of Canada’s website, Canada-Ukraine Free Trade Agreement
3. Pentagon, State Department Propose Plan to White House for Providing Arms to Ukraine
The New York Times reported today, “The Pentagon and State Department have proposed to the White House a plan to supply Ukraine with anti-tank missiles and other arms, according to Defense Department officials.
          The proposed transfer – which also would include antiaircraft arms that would be defined as defensive weaponry – comes as fighting between Ukrainian troops and Russian-backed separatists has increased in recent days, and the United States is taking steps to deter aggressive military actions by Moscow.
          The plan by the Pentagon and State Department has been presented to the White House, but no decision has been made, said a Defense Department official, who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss a proposal still under review. It was not clear if President Trump had been briefed on the proposal. […]
          Two years ago, eight former senior American officials urged the Obama administration to send $3 billion in defensive arms and equipment to Ukraine, including anti-armor missiles, reconnaissance drones, armored Humvees and radars that can determine the location of enemy rocket and artillery fire. President Obama ultimately decided against providing such lethal assistance. […]
          Under the new proposal, which was reported earlier by The Wall Street Journal, the administration would provide anti-tank weapons, most likely Javelin missiles, as well as possibly antiaircraft weapons, in addition to other arms.”
4. Atlantic Council: The Russia Sanctions Bill is a Decisive Moment for US Policy – Now What?
Writing for the Atlantic Council, Edward Fishman, former Russia and Europe Lead in the US State Department’s Office of Sanctions Policy, analyzes the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act. Fishman writes, “On July 28, the White House announced that President Donald Trump intends to sign the Russia sanctions bill that passed the House and Senate with veto-proof majorities. […]
          The bill is the most significant act by Congress on Russia policy in decades. Since the end of the Cold War, US policy toward Russia has vacillated between hopeful engagement and hardheaded skepticism. But the bill settles US policy decisively in favor of a revised form of containment, focused on holding the line against Moscow’s assault on liberal democracy and the post-Cold War settlement in Europe. So long as this law is on the books, a new ‘reset’ that absolves Russia for its invasion of Ukraine and attack on the 2016 US election will be virtually impossible.” Read the full article here: The Russia Sanctions Bill is a Decisive Moment For US Policy – Now What?

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