Ukraine: Daily Briefing – May 10, 2018, 5 PM Kyiv time

Ukraine: Daily Briefing
May 10, 2018, 5 PM Kyiv time
Ukrainian soldier participates in exercise Combined Resolve in Germany. Combined Resolve (April 9-May 12) is a US Army Europe exercise of nearly 3700 service members from 13 Allied and Partner Nations. Photo – Ukraine’s Ministry of Defense
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, one Ukrainian soldier was killed and five Ukrainian soldiers were wounded in action. In the last 24 hours, Russian-terrorist forces opened fire on Ukrainian positions on the Donetsk and Luhansk sectors of the front 73 times in total, including at least 26 times with heavy weapons – mortars and artillery.
2. Leaders of Ukraine, Germany and France discuss issue of prolonging sanctions
photo – Ukraine’s Presidential Administration
Ukraine’s Presidential Administration reported, “During a working visit to Germany, President Petro Poroshenko held a trilateral meeting with President of France Emmanuel Macron and Chancellor of Germany Angela Merkel.
           ‘We had a very ambitious agenda. We discussed the issue of prolonging sanctions. We expressed serious concern over the escalation of hostilities by the Russian Federation against Ukrainian troops. Last day in the Katerynivka area, we lost one Ukrainian hero, five were wounded,’ Petro Poroshenko noted.
           The President also noted that he had informed the leaders of France and Germany in detail about the situation in the Donbas. ‘We clearly emphasize and insist that the truce that was announced before Easter must be strictly followed by Russian terrorist troops,’ he stressed.
          The President said that he had discussed with the leaders of France and Germany the de-occupation of Crimea. ‘Obviously, we discussed the de-occupation and the imposition of sanctions for the illegal conduct of the elections. I spoke about it from the very beginning,’ Petro Poroshenko said.
          ‘We coordinate actions. The package of sanctions on the implementation of the Minsk agreements and cessation of Russia’s aggression in the Donbas is inextricably linked to the package of sanctions for the illegal annexation of Crimea,’ the Head of State emphasized.”
3. Ukraine’s President meets with European Council President
Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko met with the President of the European Council Donald Tusk on May 9. The leaders agreed that the next Ukraine-EU Summit will be held July 9 in Brussels.
           Ukraine’s Presidential Administration reported, “The President of Ukraine informed the President of the European Council on the situation in the Donbas, the [Joint Forces Operation] course and the recent facts of violation of the Minsk agreements by the Russian side. The interlocutors also discussed the issue of the continuation and possible strengthening of the regime of sanctions against Russia.
           The leaders discussed the implementation of reforms in Ukraine, particularly the creation of the anticorruption court, the reform of the national security system, the implementation of the Association Agreement between Ukraine and the EU, as well as the ways to enhance the EU assistance.”
4. Toshiba and Kharkiv’s Turboatom to sign cooperation agreement
Ukraine Business Journal reported, “The Energy and Coal Industry Ministry has announced that the Japanese Embassy has confirmed Toshiba’s readiness to sign a memorandum of understanding next month ‘to cooperate with Ukraine in modernization of equipment for the nuclear energy sector, in particular, production and modernization of turbines, including for nuclear facilities in third countries.’ The details of the agreement have not been disclosed.”
5. US Senate Intelligence Committee releases unclassified first installment in Russia Report
On May 8, the US Senate Select Committee on Intelligence released the “unclassified summary of the first installment of the Committee’s Russia Report, including updated recommendations on election security and findings regarding Russian targeting of election infrastructure. In parallel, the Committee has prepared a comprehensive, classified report on threats to election infrastructure. The classified report will be submitted for declassification review, and the Committee anticipates releasing it to the public when that process is completed.”
           The report states, “In 2016, cyber actors affiliated with the Russian Government conducted an unprecedented, coordinated cyber campaign against state election infrastructure. Russian actors scanned databases for vulnerabilities, attempted intrusions, and in a small number of cases successfully penetrated a voter registration database. This activity was part of a larger campaign to prepare to undermine confidence in the voting process.  The Committee has not seen any evidence that vote tallies were manipulated or that voter registration information was deleted or modified.”
           Committee Chairman Richard Burr (R-NC) stated, “Our investigation has been a bipartisan effort from day one, and I look forward to completing the Committee’s work and releasing as much of it as possible.  We are working tirelessly to give Americans a complete accounting of what happened in 2016 and to prevent any future interference with our democratic process.”

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