Ukraine: Daily Briefing
February 14, 2018, 5 PM Kyiv time
On this Valentine’s Day, we honour Ukraine’s men and women in uniform, bravely defending their country from Russia’s aggression. To view video from the US Embassy in Kyiv, please click on image above
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 or wounded in action. In the last 24 hours, Russian-terrorist forces opened fire on Ukrainian positions 14 times in total, including at least 5 times with heavy weapons – artillery and mortars.
2. US delivers 2500 night vision devices to Ukraine’s Armed Forces
Ukraine’s Chief of the General Staff General Muzhenko and US Ambassador Yovanovitch at transfer ceremony. Photo – US Embassy Kyiv
The United States delivered 2500 night vision devices to Ukraine’s Armed Forces. At the transfer ceremony, Marie Yovanovitch, US Ambassador to Ukraine, stated, “Those opposition forces who would threaten the sovereignty of Ukraine can no longer hide under the cover of darkness. We have already seen night vision devices being put to good use defending Ukrainian territory in the east, and improving the training capacity of the Armed Forces.
These Night Vision Devices are critical to building Ukraine’s capacity but they are really only a small part of the over $850 million in security assistance the United States has provided to Ukraine since 2014. […]
The United States provides this assistance because we are committed to helping Ukraine defend its sovereignty and territorial integrity. That means helping to increase the capacity of Ukrainian Armed Forces. That means helping to train and equip the Ukrainian Armed Forces.
It also means helping Ukrainian Armed Forces to reform itself. At the strategic level, this means a continued focus on reforms that bear concrete results. This includes adopting a law on national security that strengthens civilian and democratic oversight in the defense and security sectors in line with Euro-Atlantic principles.
It means implementing a capabilities based planning system to ensure Ukraine builds a professional, sustainable defense force capable of fully protecting Ukraine’s territorial integrity;
It means creating transparency and accountability in the defense sector through the implementation of internal control systems to manage risk; And it means reforming Ukraine’s defense industry to ensure that it operates in line with international standards of corporate governance and transparency. […] Дуже дякую. Слава Українi!”
3. Odesa mayor detained in embezzlement probe
Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) reported, “The mayor of the Ukrainian Black Sea port city of Odesa, Hennadiy Trukhanov, has been detained upon arrival from abroad on suspicion of embezzlement.
Officials at Boryspil international airport told RFE/RL that Trukhanov was detained by border guards and handed over to officers of the National Anticorruption Bureau of Ukraine (NABU) after his flight arrived from Warsaw on February 14.
In a February 13 statement, NABU said that Trukhanov had been officially informed that he is a suspect in an investigation into suspected embezzlement. It said that a deputy mayor and two Odesa City Council members were also informed that they were suspects in the case.
Trukhanov had been away from his office for 50 days. His press service said on February 14 that he had to cut short a business trip to the Czech Republic and ‘return to Ukraine to take part in the ongoing investigation.’ […]
Last autumn, NABU said it searched Trukhanov’s office, his residence, and premises of the Odesa City Council. Trukhanov said at the time that the investigators searched not his apartment but that of his ex-wife.”
4. Kyiv Boryspil international airport was third fastest growing airport in Europe
Ukraine Business Journal reported, “Kyiv’s Boryspil International Airport was Europe’s third fastest growing airport for its size last year, the Airports Council International Europe reports. With 22.1% percent growth, to 10.5 million passengers, Boryspil was bested only by Keflavík, Iceland, up 28.3%; and Naples, up 26.6%. With its growth, Boryspil outgrew its category, the 5 to 10 million passenger group. […]
Boryspil […] saw record $152 million revenue last year, the Kyiv-based Center for Transport Strategies reports. After recording 10.5 million passengers, Boryspil’s management starts a 6-year, $224 million modernization program designed to double traffic by 2023, to 20 million. Boryspil accounts for 60% of Ukraine’s air traffic and offers direct flights to about 100 cities.”