Crisis in Ukraine: Daily Briefing
16 November 2015, 8 PM Kyiv time
- Russian Invasion of Ukraine
National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine (RNBO) spokesperson A Lysenko reported that the situation was “most tense” on the western outskirts of Donetsk, stating that the “enemy regularly opens fire on our positions”. Three Ukrainian soldiers were killed in a landmine blast. Over the last 24 hours, a “radio-controlled landmine” laid by the rebels blew up some 50 kilometers (30 miles) southwest of Luhansk killing the three servicemen Lysenko said. RNBO reported that full-scale fighting has returned with nine Ukrainian soldiers killed in the last three days. Five soldiers were killed in fights on Nov. 13: four near Mariyinka village in Donetsk Oblast and one near Novotoshkivka village in Luhansk Oblast.
- Canadian PM meets President Putin at G20: Tells him to “Cease Interfering in Ukraine”
Canada’s Prime Minister J Trudeau told Russian President V Putin to “cease interfering in Ukraine” during a brief conversation between the two on the sidelines of the G20 leaders’ meeting. This year’s summit was Trudeau’s first opportunity to interact with the Russian president after the prime minister promised during the election campaign to confront Putin over Russia’s actions in Ukraine. On Monday, Trudeau said that’s what he did during a “brief” conversation. “I pointed out that (while) Canada has shifted its approach on a broad range of multilateral and international issues, we remain committed to the fact that Russia’s interference in Ukraine must cease, that we stand with the Ukrainian people, and expect the president to engage fully in the Minsk peace process,” Trudeau said.
- Ukraine may return artillery to contact line
Following this weekend’s attacks in Eastern Ukraine, RNBO spokesman, Andriy Lysenko stated that Ukraine could return artillery to its eastern frontline if fighting escalates further stated today.
“If the situation escalates further our military commanders will be forced to return artillery and mortars to the first line of defense to defend Ukrainian positions and protect the lives of our servicemen,” he said in a daily televised briefing.
- Ukraine Interior Minister: Potential Terrorist Attacks expected
Following meetings with Ukraine’s Security Service, or SBU, Ukraine’s Interior Minister A. Avakov said that in the -“upcoming days…we shall have to live through several attempts by destructive, anti-Ukrainian forces to destabilize the situation in the country.” Based on the intelligence he received, Avakov said he has placed law enforcement “structures in beefed-up security mode.”