Crisis in Ukraine: Daily Briefing
13 September 2016, 6 PM Kyiv time
1. Russian Invasion of Ukraine
Ukraine’s Ministry of Defense reported that in the last 24 hours, three Ukrainian soldiers were killed, and fifteen Ukrainian soldiers were wounded in action. One Ukrainian soldier is missing in action. Towards Luhansk, Russian-terrorist forces attacked a Ukrainian position near Stanytsia Luhanska. At Popasne, Russian-terrorist forces shelled Ukrainian positions with mortars. Towards Donetsk, Russian-terrorist forces carried out heavy mortar shelling of Ukrainian positions at Avdiyivka and Luhanske village. Towards Mariupol, Russian-terrorist forces shelled Ukrainian positions at Krasnohorivka and Shyrokyne with mortars. Russian-terrorist forces shelled Ukrainian positions at Chermalyk with artillery.
2. Ukraine’s President to meet with several European foreign ministers on 14 September
Ukraine’s President will meet with the Ministers of Foreign Affairs of Germany and France tomorrow. President Poroshenko’s press service reported, “The parties will coordinate measures to exert pressure on Russia aimed at ensuring the fulfillment of the security component of the Minsk agreement by the Russian side. Special attention will be paid to the advancement in the liberation of Ukrainian hostages in Donbas and Ukrainian political prisoners illegally detained in Russia.” President Poroshenko will also meet with the Foreign Ministers of the UK and Poland.
3. Operation UNIFIER medical staff hit the ground running
In an article published by Canada’s Department of National Defence, Joint Task Force-Ukraine stated, “Barely unpacked, Joint Task Force-Ukraine medical staff began mentoring Ukrainian instructors in mid-August as they conducted their first Combat First Aid (CFA) course. The course was entirely taught by the Ukrainian Armed Forces instructors, who were well-trained by the outgoing Operation UNIFIER medical personnel. After a busy handover with the out-going medical team, the newly arrived medical staff from 1 Field Ambulance at Canadian Forces Base Edmonton moved forward with an open mind. ‘I was very impressed with the level of performance and instruction,’ said a Master Corporal Medical Technician and trainer at the conclusion of Ukrainian-led Combat First Aid training. ‘Our Ukrainian instructor colleagues, as well as the course candidates, far exceeded expectations.’ The course was divided into segments that included theoretical (classroom-based) instruction, demonstrations of technique from the Ukrainian instructors, practical sessions where candidates demonstrated their understanding of material, and skill stations designed to perfect key techniques. […] The course consisted of thirty-six candidates with diverse backgrounds and military experience levels, ranging from seasoned veterans with front-line experience, to new recruits with as little as nine months of total military experience. All of the candidates were enthusiastic and eager to learn the course material; their pride showed when they were congratulated by the Operation UNIFIER Task Force Commander, Task Force Sergeant-Major, and Task Force Surgeon upon graduation. […]The inaugural course complete, Operation UNIFIER medical staff are now on to the next challenge: they will be mentoring the next CFA serial being delivered to Ukrainian Combat Engineers by Ukrainian instructors.” The full article is available at http://www.forces.gc.ca/en/
news/article.page?doc= operation-unifier-medical- staff-hit-the-ground-running/ isvdjsjp
4. The Guardian: Letter from Ukrainian filmmaker Oleg Sentsov smuggled out of Russian prison
The Guardian published a letter from Ukrainian filmmaker Oleg Sentsov, who has been illegally imprisoned in the Russian Federation since 2014. Russia has ignored repeated calls from the international community for Sentsov’s immediate release. Sentsov’s letter, smuggled out of prison, stated, “For three years I’ve been sitting in a Russian prison. For those three years a war has been conducted against my country. The enemy is fighting like a coward, vilely, pretending he has nothing to do with it. No one believes him now but that doesn’t stop him. War is never pretty but truth is on our side. We attacked no one and are just defending ourselves. […]Each enemy, the larger and the smaller one, has different goals but we are on paths different from the ones they’re taking. […] I know who will win. The desire for freedom and progress is unstoppable. […]Here, in captivity, we are limited: and not even by freedom – this can no longer be taken – but by being of little help to our country while we’re in here. To be more precise, we can do one thing: hold on. There is no need to pull us out of here at all costs. This wouldn’t bring victory any closer. Yet using us as a weapon against the enemy will. You must know: we are not your weak point. If we’re supposed to become the nails in the coffin of a tyrant, I’d like to become one of those nails. Just know that this particular one will not bend,” the Guardian reported.