Ukraine: Daily Briefing – February 6, 2019, 8 PM Kyiv time

Ukraine: Daily Briefing
February 6, 2019, 8 PM Kyiv time
UAF training. Photo – Ukrainian MOD
1. Russian Invasion of Ukraine
Ukraine’s Ministry of Defense reported at 12:30 PM Kyiv time that on February 5 one Ukrainian service member was wounded in action. In the last 24 hours, Russian-terrorist forces opened fire 12 times on Ukrainian positions in Luhansk and Donetsk, including several times with heavy weapons.
The press center of Ukraine’s Joint Forces Operation released an intelligence report saying that the enemy suffered casualties as a result of returning fire by the Ukrainian Armed Forces in the last 24 hours.
2. Ukraine Is Building Anti-Ship Cruise Missiles
 
Neptune Cruise Missile. Photo – Military Today.com
Ukraine has been developing it’s arms manufacturing industry since before the Revolution of Dignity, annexation of the Crimean Peninsula, and the Russian invasion into eastern Ukraine. “The goal was two-fold: to supplement aid from Washington with domestically-produced equipment, and to become a player in the export markets,” reports Mark Episkopos at The National Interest.
The “Neptune” project, announced in 2013 by Ukrainian manufacturer Luch Design Bureau, is meant to provide Ukraine with a deterrent against Russian sea power in the Azov region. The missile is designed to destroy vessels with a displacement of up to 5,000 tons, boasts a range of under 300 kilometers, and uses a 150-kilogram high-explosive fragmentation warhead which can be deployed on air, sea, and land platforms. […]
Last year, Kyiv announced Neptune’s first successful flight: “Today’s tests have opened a new stage of the missile program, according to which our Armed Forces must receive powerful high-performance cruise missiles that can accurately strike hostile targets at great distances,” said National Security and Defense Council Secretary Oleksandr Turchynov. […]
If successful, Neptune would be a key technical and symbolic milestone in Ukraine’s missile development program.
3. Ministry of Justice of Ukraine to Appeal MOH Suprun’s Suspension
Ulana Suprun. Photo – UNIAN

The Minister of Justice of Ukraine Pavel Petrenko announced an appeal of the decision of the District Administrative Court of Kyiv which has banned Ulana Suprun from heading the Ministry of Health. “Absurd, irresponsible decisions of the Ukrainian courts will not prohibit Ulana perform her duties as Acting Minister of Health. The decision of the District Administrative Court of Kyiv will be urgently appealed,” said Minister Petrenko.

Earlier, President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko restated that he granted Ulana Suprun Ukrainian citizenship before she became Acting Minister of Health.  He stated that although as President he was not entitled to comment on a court decision by law, Mrs. Suprun has his full support as the President of Ukraine, commending her achievements in the medical reform.
The Kyiv District Administrative Court has suspended Acting Health Minister Ulana Suprun from performing her daily duties. This was the result of Ihor Mosiychuk, Radical Party MP, filing a lawsuit against Suprun claiming among other things that she was incompetent and unable to fulfill her duties.
4. Ukraine Opens Treason Probe Against Pro-Russian Politician
Viktor Medvedchuk. Photo RFE_RL
“Authorities in Ukraine say they are investigating allegations that Viktor Medvedchuk, a shadowy Ukrainian political operative with close personal ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin, has committed high treason and sought to undermine the country’s territorial integrity,” reports Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL).
Larysa Sarhan with the Prosecutor-General’s Office announced that Ukraine’s Security Service would follow up on a complaint filed by lawmaker Andriy Teteruk.
Mr. Medvedchuk heads the Opposition Platform — For Life party and Ukrainian Choice, two political organizations that many in Ukraine consider to be pro-Kremlin. Mr. Teteruk has claimed that Medvedchuk told his party congress on January 29 that territories controlled by Russia-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine must be granted autonomous status within the country. […]
Granting autonomy to the eastern region known as Donbas would “legalize temporarily occupied territories,” which would contradict the Ukrainian constitution and help “a foreign country to conduct sabotage operations against Ukraine,” Sarhan added.”
5. Ukraine Gets First Batch of Locomotives from GE
Ukrainian Railways has received the first batch of 30 locomotives under the USD 1 billion-dollar contract with General Electric (GE). Fifteen locomotives have been put into service, while the rest were sent to Kryukov Railway Car Building Plant in central Ukraine for the installation of additional equipment, said Ukrainian Railways in a statement.
On Feb. 23, 2018, Ukrainian Railways and GE signed a 15-year framework agreement aimed at upgrading Ukraine’s rolling stock. Under the deal, GE is set to supply a total of 225 locomotive kits to Ukraine, repair 75 outdated locomotives, and provide long-term maintenance services to Ukrainian Railways’ fleet.
Ukrainian Railways operates a railway network of about 22,000 kilometers, accounting for about 50 percent of the country’s passenger traffic and 82 percent of its cargo transportation.
6. Ukraine Cuts Final Tie to CIS Coordination Bodies
Ukraine has finalized the process of stepping out of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) and is working to terminate its participation in treaties concluded earlier as part of the CIS, reported Ukraine’s Ambassador to Belarus Ihor Kyzym.
“We have terminated our participation in the CIS coordination bodies that exist here [in Minsk]. […] Therefore, I think that the process has been completed. We have submitted a respective document, therefore, that’s it,” the ambassador said.
“On May 19, 2018, President Petro Poroshenko signed a decree, to terminate certain international treaties concluded as part of the Commonwealth of Independent States. On January 23, 2019, the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine decided to terminate three agreements on economic cooperation concluded as part of the CIS. […]
On January 30, [2019] Ukraine withdrew from the agreement determining general conditions for the supply of goods between the CIS member states,” as reported by Ukrinform
7. Ukraine Wins First Ever World Championship Medal in Snowboarding
“Ukrainian snowboarder Annamari Dancha became a silver medalist of the FIS Snowboarding World Championship,” reported Unian. “A 28-year-old Ukrainian ranked second in parallel slalom. This is the first ever medal for Ukraine in snowboarding at the world championships.”

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