UAF training supervised by international instructors. Photo courtesy of JMTG Ukraine
1. Russian Invasion of Ukraine
Ukraine’s Ministry of Defense reported at 12:30 PM Kyiv time that on May 26 the Ukrainian Armed Forces suffered no casualties. In the last 24 hours, Russian-terrorist forces opened fire three times on Ukrainian positions in the Donetsk sector. According to the Ukrainian Military Intelligence while returning fire the Ukrainian Armed Forces wounded one enemy soldier yesterday.
On May 24 and 25 the Russia-led proxy forces opened fire 23 times on Ukrainian positions in the Luhansk and Donetsk sectors, using heavy weapons four times. One service member of the Ukrainian Armed forces was killed in action and one service member was wounded in action on Friday and Saturday. Returning fire, Ukrainian forces killed one and wounded four enemy troops on May 24, 25.
2. UN Maritime Tribunal Rules Russia Must Release Ukrainian Sailors, Ships
On May 25 International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS) has ruled that Russian authorities must immediately release the 24 Ukrainian sailors and return three ships that were captured last year after entering the Kerch Strait. Ukrainian Deputy Foreign Minister Olena Zerkal said she expects Russia to comply with the tribunal’s order. “The order of the Tribunal is a clear signal for Russia that it cannot violate international law with impunity,” she said.
Russian officials did not attend the tribunal’s hearing and only sent a note through the Russian Embassy in Germany saying the country does not believe the tribunal has jurisdiction to review the incident.
“The actions taken by the Russian Federation could irreparably prejudice the rights claimed by Ukraine to the immunity of its naval vessels and their servicemen,” said Jin-Hyun Paik, the tribunal’s president as reported by CNN.
President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky stated that Russia could send a positive signal by following the ruling. “In this way, Russia could take a step toward unblocking talks and resolving in a civilized way problems that it created,” read Zelensky’s statement on Facebook.
In his piece Dylan Robertson is talking how Canada is helping Ukraine. He does it through a series of stories about people both in Canada and in Ukraine. The author provides an overview of Canada’s assistance which ranges from donated hockey gear, to principled police training, to national election monitoring, to personal involvement of Canadian citizens.
Raised in Winnipeg’s North End, Marko Suprun, husband of Ulana Suprun, Minister of Health of Ukraine, who works in Ukraine’s StopFake project fighting Russian propaganda warns that Russia will ramp up divisive, fake news stories as the Canadian federal election nears in October. “Canada’s being hit; they’re already setting up the main narratives,” he said.
Former foreign affairs minister Lloyd Axworthy, who lead Canada’s election observation mission to Ukraine said he felt “lifted by the scores of ‘ordinary Canadians’ who volunteered to spend their vacation time in small towns. […] They feel that they’re doing something important there, helping to be constructive,” he said.
All in all, the author is convinced that Canadians are making a difference in Ukraine and in its struggle to free itself of Russia’s influence.
4. In Ukraine, Poroshenko’s Bloc Rebrands Itself Ahead Of Parliamentary Elections
On May 24, the political party of former Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko changed its name from Solidarity to European Solidarity ahead of key parliamentary elections. “The key to unity and victory is a renewed party and renewed leadership,” said Poroshenko at the gathering in Kyiv.
On May 21, the newly elected Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky signed a decree dissolving the Verkhovna Rada setting early parliamentary elections for July 21. The Decree took effect on May 23. The Verkhovna Rada [Ukraine’s Parliament] Chairman Andriy Parubiy stated that the decision to dissolve the parliament was illegal and would be appealed in the Constitutional Court. Originally, the next parliamentary elections had been set for late October.
5. Ukrainian Secondary School to Introduce Licensed Canadian Diploma
Photo courtesy of Novopecherska School in Kyiv, Ukraine
One of the schools in Ukraine’s capital will start issuing dual diplomas Manitoba-Ukraine secondary school degrees. Reportedly, the school has got permission of the Department of Education of Manitoba to launched the Blended Program in September 2018. Last week, the four-year licensing process was completed, and now this is the first school that offers its graduates to obtain the Manitoba High School Diploma without leaving Kyiv.
“The program is designed for 4 years, it includes compulsory subjects of the Ukrainian and Manitoba programs, as well as basic subjects necessary for entry into higher education institutions. Graduate Manitoba High School Diploma credits are credited to foreign institutions of higher education without further proof,” reads the statement on the Novopecherska School website.
Read more details here [in Ukrainian]. Read the tweet by Canadian Ambassador to Ukraine Roman Waschuk.
6. Holodomor Petition to Bundestag in Germany Gathers Over 50,000 Signatures
Photo from former President Poroshenko’s tweet
On May 10, Ukrainian Canadian Congress Called on its subscribers to Support the Petition to Bundestag [German Parliament] to recognize the Holodomor of 1932-1933 as a genocide of the Ukrainian People. We would like to thank all those who participated. The petition gathered more than 50 thousand signatures before the deadline.
“Thank you very much to everyone who joined the important business – a petition to the German Bundestag on the recognition of the Holodomor as a genocide of Ukrainians gained the required 50,000 votes. The work continues,” tweetedMinister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Pavlo Klimkin.
Former President Poroshenko also thanked everyone who joined the campaign. “Petition calling on the Bundestag of Germany to recognize the Holodomor as a genocide has gained more than 50 thousand signatures! This is an example of genuine unity,” he wrote amplifying that in his international meetings, he would continue “to raise this issue to achieve a successful outcome.”
7. Ukrainian World Congress: Referendum on Peace Deal with Russia Threatens Sovereignty of Ukraine
The Ukrainian World Congress (UWC) expressed deep concern over the prospect of holding an “advisory referendum” regarding a peace deal with Russia as proposed by President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky on May 23, 2019.
“Firstly, there is no legal basis in Ukraine for conducting an “advisory referendum”. Secondly, holding such a referendum while Russia wages a massive information warfare campaign in Ukraine shall threaten the sovereignty of Ukraine. And finally, it is obvious that the Ukrainian people want peace, and there is no need for a referendum on the question,” reads the statement on the UWC website.