Ukraine: Daily Briefing
August 23, 2019, 5 PM Kyiv time
1. Russian Invasion of Ukraine
Ukraine’s Ministry of Defense reported at 12:30 PM Kyiv time that in the last 24 hours, no Ukrainian soldiers were killed and two Ukrainian soldiers were wounded in action. In the last 24 hours, Russian-terrorist forces opened fire on Ukrainian positions on the Luhansk and Donetsk sectors of the front 13 times in total.
2. Canada’s Prime Minister speaks with Ukraine’s President
The Office of the President of Ukraine reported on August 22, “President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy had a phone conversation with Prime Minister of Canada Justin Trudeau.
The Head of State thanked for Canada’s consistent position on the impossibility of Russia’s return to the G7 in light of the ongoing aggression in Donbas and occupation of Crimea. The President believes that in a situation where Ukrainians are still being killed, it is necessary not to return Russia to the G7, but to force it to fulfill its obligations.
Volodymyr Zelenskyy thanked Justin Trudeau for his willingness to adhere to the same principled position regarding the inadmissibility of the Russian Federation’s return to the G7, which he demonstrated during last year’s G7 summit in Canada.
The President of Ukraine and the Prime Minister of Canada have agreed to continue the discussion of the issue of counteracting Russia’s aggressive policy and protecting Ukraine’s interests after the G7 summit in France.”
3. Luciuk: August 23, 1939 marks start of Nazi-Soviet agreement
Dr. Lubomyr Luciuk, professor at the Royal Military College of Canada, wrote for the Kyiv Post, “Not many remember what happened today, 80 years ago. Worse, we live in a world populated by scores of propagandists doing their darndest to pretend nothing much did. These shills are more than duplicitous. They are dangerous. For they are trying to rewrite the history of the Second World War, to obfuscate not just the dates on which the war began, and ended, but to confound us about who the villains were.
Eighty years ago, on Aug. 23, 1939, the Soviet Union allied itself with Nazi Germany under the terms of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact. The Second World War began on Sept. 1, 1939 as Hitler and Stalin dismembered Poland. […]
No fair-minded person denies the Soviet Union eventually played a major role in helping defeat the Nazis. Most Soviet civilian losses occurred in Ukraine and Belarus, giving the lie to claims about there being ’27 million Russian war dead,’ since most of them were not Russians.
Certainly all who suffered under Nazi oppression deserve to be hallowed. But we must not forget the Soviet Union was not our ally when the Second World War began. On that date, Stalin stood with Hitler, and that means, simply put, the Soviets were ranked against us.
As Canadians we honor those who stood in defense of liberty from the day the war began and those who fought to its end, May 8, 1945. But, as we do so, we must never forget that Moscow’s men not only fueled the Second World War but joined our side only after the Holocaust they had stoked began to burn their empire down. Let us not forget that, at least not today.”
The full article is available here: August 23,1939 marks start of Nazi-Soviet agreement
4. Head of Ukrainian President’s Office sues RFE/RL for libel
Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) reported on August 22, “The head of Ukraine’s presidential office is suing an investigative journalism program of RFE/RL’s Ukrainian Service for libel, the government says.
A news release on the government’s judicial web portal says the lawsuit was filed on August 20 in a Kyiv court to defend Andriy Bohdan’s “honor, dignity, and business reputation.”
It names Ukraine’s state-run public broadcaster UA:PBC and three members of Skhemy (Schemes) as co-defendants: chief editor Natalka Sedletska, and journalists Maksym Savchuk and Valeria Yehoshyna. Skhemy is a joint project by RFE/RL’s Ukrainian Service and the UA:Pershy television channel, which belongs to UA:PBC.
There is no information on the essence of the claims, but the plaintiff is seeking to ‘refute false information,’ according to the judicial web portal. ‘At present, neither journalists nor the Radio Liberty editorial office have received the text of the lawsuit,’ said Inna Kuznetsova, chief editor of RFE/RL’s Kyiv bureau. ‘Once it arrives, we will analyze it with lawyers and voice our position on Andriy Bohdan’s claims.’
A preliminary hearing in the case is scheduled for September 19 at Kyiv’s Shevchenko district court.
Bohdan was formerly billionaire Ihor Kolomoyskiy’s personal lawyer. President Volodymyr Zelenskyy is linked to Kolomoyskiy through the oligarch’s ownership of Ukrainian TV station 1+1, which hosts the former comic and actor’s comedy programs and hit sitcom, Servant Of The People, as well as through advisers and other resources.
Bohdan has been the subject of Skhemy investigations in the past. In April, the program reported that before his appointment as head of the presidential office, Bohdan had secretly visited the Constitutional Court the previous month, according to the court’s visitor logbook.
At that time, there was legal debate whether Bohdan could head the presidential office because he was a senior official in former President Viktor Yanukovych’s administration. A lustration law in effect bars senior Yanukovych-era officials from posts in future Ukrainian governments. Another Skhemy investigation found that Bohdan and Zelenskyy flew at least five times together starting in January from Kyiv to Tel Aviv, where Kolomoyskiy was residing at that time in self-imposed exile.”