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RUSSIA & UKRAINE: Johnson’s Russia List contents with links :: 2014-#66 :: Tuesday, 25 March 2014

St. Basil's file photo

[check back for updates, including more links; links also posted to facebook and twitter] Johnson’s Russia List :: 2014-#66 :: 25 March 2014 E-Mail: davidjohnson@starpower.net A project of the Institute for European, Russian and Eurasian Studies (IERES) at The George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs: www.ieres.org JRL homepage: russialist.org JRL on Facebook: facebook.com/russialist

The Hague Declaration

File Photo of G7 Leaders and other Officials Around Round Table at the Hague, with Flags

(The White House – Office of the Press Secretary – For Immediate Release – March 24, 2014) 1. We, the leaders of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, the United States, the President of the European Council and the President of the European Commission met in The Hague to reaffirm our support for

From Estonia to Azerbaijan: American Strategy After Ukraine

File Photo of Vladimir Putin and Barack Obama Seated Before Russian and U.S. Flags

(Stratfor.com – Geopolitical Weekly – George Friedman – Tuesday, March 25, 2014 – 03:08) As I discussed last week, the fundamental problem that Ukraine poses for Russia, beyond a long-term geographical threat, is a crisis in internal legitimacy. Russian President Vladimir Putin has spent his time in power rebuilding the authority of the Russian state within

Putin Tasks Trusted Lieutenant With Economic Development Of Crimea

Russian Naval Vessel in Ukrainian Port

(RFE/RL – rferl.org – March 24, 2014) Russian President Vladimir Putin named Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Kozak, his long-time trusted lieutenant and trouble-shooter, on March 21 to oversee the economic development of the Re public of Crimea. Crimea and the city of Sevastopol were formally incorporated into the Russian Federation as individual federation subjects on

Russian official admits Crimean economy depends on links with Ukraine

Maidan Square file photo

(Interfax – Moscow, March 24, 2014) The potential of the Crimean economy will depend to a large extent on the development of its economic ties with Ukraine, Russian Deputy Minister of Economic Development Andrey Klepach told a briefing in Moscow on Monday. Asked what contribution the Crimean economy would make to the Russian economy, the

Russian Cabinet Outlines Costs of Crimea

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Anatoly Medetsky – March 25, 2014) The costly consequences of expanding Russia’s territory became clearer Monday when Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev revealed a Crimea to-do list for the government and its corporations. Russia will need to take care of entitlements and services ranging from retirement pensions to tax rebates to

RUSSIA & UKRAINE: Johnson’s Russia List contents with links :: 2014-#65 :: Monday, 24 March 2014

St. Basil's file photo

[check back for updates, including more links; links also posted to facebook and twitter] Johnson’s Russia List :: 2014-#65 :: 24 March 2014 E-Mail: davidjohnson@starpower.net A project of the Institute for European, Russian and Eurasian Studies (IERES) at The George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs: www.ieres.org JRL homepage: russialist.org JRL on Facebook: facebook.com/russialist

VIDEO: What’s Next for Ukraine? – The Charlie Rose Show, with Sestanovich, Cohen and Bremmer

Russian Naval Vessel in Ukrainian Port

The Charlie Rose Show covers unfolding events in the ongoing crisis in Ukraine, including occupied Crimea. Rose talks with Stephen Sestanovich, Stephen Cohen and Ian Bremmer.  

Russia-Ukraine: Return of the Prometheans

Russian Naval Vessel in Ukrainian Port

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – Chris Weafer, Macro Advisors – March 24, 2014) “Taking a new step, uttering a new word, is what people fear the most” Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Crime and Punishment The threat is more important than existing sanctions. The sanctions announced so far do not directly cause any material disruption to the

RIA Novosti: Russia Slams Robbery of Russian Train Passengers in Ukraine

Russian Foreign Ministry Building Tower file photo

MOSCOW, March 24 (RIA Novosti) – The Russian Foreign Ministry on Monday denounced as an act of anarchy the robbery of Russian passengers on board a train in Ukraine by ultranationalists last week. On Friday, a group of uniformed men boarded a train from Moscow in the southwestern Ukrainian city of Vinnytsia under the pretext

Russians Must Oust Putin Rather than Suffer for His Imperial Ambitions, Felshtinsky Says

Vladimir Putin file photo

(Window on Eurasia – Paul Goble – Staunton, March 24, 2014) Russians must recognize that Vladimir Putin is “an aggressor and instigator of war,” that he is making them into “victims and participants in state crimes,” that he will eventually lose to the democratic world, and that he, they and their country will suffer and

Ukraine-EU Pact Signals Step Towards NATO – Russian Ministry Source

EU Map

MOSCOW, March 24 (RIA Novosti) – The signing of a political pact between Ukraine and the European Union is a hasty step which points to the prospect of closer military ties between Kiev and NATO, a Russian foreign ministry source said Monday. “The political provisions of the association deal pave the way for further entrenchment

Moscow restaurants impose “entry ban” on Obama

File Photo of Barack Obama Sitting at Desk with Mike McFaul Standing Next to Him Facing Him

MOSCOW. March 22 (Interfax) – Moscow restaurants are introducing sanctions against U.S. President Barack Obama. Notices saying an “entry ban” has been imposed on Obama have been put up at the entrances to Dolma restaurants in central Moscow, an Interfax correspondent reported. The manager of a Dolma restaurant, Lasha Churgulia, said that, “the ban only

TRANSCRIPT: Putin and Lavrov at Meeting with permanent members of the Security Council

Russian Naval Vessel in Ukrainian Port

(Kremlin.ru – March 21, 2014) Vladimir Putin held a meeting with the permanent members of the Security Council, during which a detailed discussion on the situation in Ukraine took place. Taking part in the meeting were Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, Federation Council Speaker Valentina Matviyenko, State Duma Speaker Sergei Naryshkin, Chief of Staff of the

TRANSCRIPT: Putin at Congress of the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs

File Photo of Vladimir Putin at Valdai Club 2013 Meeting, Adapted from Screenshot of Valdai Club Video at youtube.com

(Kremlin.ru – March 20, 2014) Vladimir Putin took part in the annual congress of the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs. The topics on the congress’ agenda include de-offshorisation of the economy, making business more transparent, enhancing labour productivity, improving labour legislation, and creating a better investment climate. During the congress, representatives from the Agency

Interfax: Russians support Crimean accession to Russia – poll

Kremlin and Saint Basil's

MOSCOW. March 24 (Interfax) – An overwhelming majority of Russians (93%) support Crimea’s accession to Russia and only 4% have a negative opinion, the Russian Public Opinion Study Center (VTsIOM) said. In the opinion of 89% of Russians, Crimea means Russia. Some 65% of people who share this opinion say that Crimea is a historically

Interim Ukraine government in the same hole as Yanukovych

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – KYIV BLOG – Ben Aris in Moscow – March 24, 2014) The interim Ukrainian government signed off on the long-mooted Association Agreement with the EU at the weekend, setting the impasse with Russia in stone. However, the “Maidan” government baulked at signi ng the economic part of the deal.

Will the Ukrainian conflict turn hot?

Russian Naval Vessel in Ukrainian Port

(rbth.ru – March 24, 2014 – Nikolai Gorshkov, special to RBTH) Ukrainian interim Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk has warned Russia than any attempt to annex areas of Eastern Ukraine will meet a very tough response, including a military one. EU in Brussels also spoke of measures beyond the already agreed, should Russia move into Ukrainian

Russian Defense Ministry denies rumors about concentration of troops on Ukrainian border

Map of Ukraine and Ukrainian Flag

MOSCOW. March 23 (Interfax) – Russia has no plans to concentrate its troops on the Ukrainian border, Russian Deputy Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov said. “The Russian Defense Ministry observes all international agreements on the restriction of the number of troops in the areas bordering on Ukraine,” Antonov said on Sunday, commenting on the reports published

RUSSIA & UKRAINE: Johnson’s Russia List table of contents :: 2014-#63 :: Friday , 21 March 2014

St. Basil's file photo

Johnson’s Russia List :: 2014-#63 :: 21 March 2014 E-Mail: davidjohnson@starpower.net A project of the Institute for European, Russian and Eurasian Studies (IERES) at The George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs: www.ieres.org JRL homepage: russialist.org JRL on Facebook: facebook.com/russialist JRL on Twitter: twitter.com/JohnsonRussiaLi Support JRL: russialist.org/funding.php To subscribe to the JRL email version,

RIA Novosti: Russia not forcing Ukraine to pay back loan early – Finance Minister Anton Siluanov

Anton Siluanov file photo

(RIA Novosti – March 20, 2014) The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has addressed Russia with a proposal to take part in developing a programme of structural reforms in Ukraine, the Russian RIA Novosti reported on 20 March, quoting Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov. The implementation of the programme will be a condition for allocating an

Russia says close to agreement on OSCE monitors for Ukraine

File Photo of OSCE Banners

Reuters reports on statements by Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov that the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe is close to reaching an arrangement to send observers to Ukraine: ‘We have already practically agreed a draft decision’ on an observer mission, Lavrov told President Vladimir Putin in televised remarks, adding that observers would be

Former Ambassador McFaul: Putin May Be Just Getting Started

Ambassador Mike McFaul file photo

(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – By Albert R. Hunt – March 19, 2014) Albert R. Hunt is a Bloomberg View columnist. Michael McFaul, who recently stepped down as U.S. ambassador to Russia, says President Vladimir Putin is riding “an ugly nationalistic fervor that’s off the charts,” and is likely to escalate tensions with the U.S. and

Hagel Gets Assurances About Russian Troops on Ukraine Border

Sergei Shoigu file photo

(Defense.gov – American Forces Press Service – Jim Garamone – WASHINGTON – March 20, 2014) Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoygu assured Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel that Russian troops along the Russia-Ukraine border are there solely for exercise purposes and will not cross over into Ukrainian territory, Pentagon Press Secretary Navy Rear Adm. John Kirby said

Interfax: Russia’s ruling party distances itself from MP Vladimir Zhirinovskiy’s territorial claims on Ukraine

Vladimir Zhirinovsky file photo

(Interfax – Moscow, March 20, 2014) The parliamentary majority does not share [LDPR party leader] Vladimir Zhirinovskiy’s view that Russia has to expand its borders by incorporating Donbass [industrial area of Ukraine around Donetsk] and some other regions of Ukraine. “I would like to comment on the LDPR leader and say that some of his

Medvedev: Ukraine owes $16 billion to Russia

File Photo of Blue Flame from Natural Gas

(Interfax – March 21, 2014) Ukraine’s debt to Russia stands at $16 billion, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev told President Vladimir Putin at a session of the country’s Security Council on Friday. “Ukraine has quite a significant debt to the Russian Federation, both state and corporate,” he said. “In my opinion, we cannot afford to

BNE: Russia won’t move into East Ukraine unless there is a massacre of its citizens – Sergei Mironov

Sergei Mironov

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – March 20, 2014) “Russia won’t deploy troops in eastern Ukraine unless there is a “massacre” of its citizens there, says Sergei Mironov, leader of pro-Kremlin Just Russia party and a Putin ally, reports Bloomberg. “It would be highly undesirable and I think it’s unlikely, unless we see large-scale massacres,

RIA Novosti: Death Toll From Unrest in Ukraine Rises to 103

Ukraine Map and Flag

MOSCOW, March 20 (RIA Novosti) – The death toll from the unrest in Ukraine that led to the ouster of the country’s president last month has risen to 103, the country’s Ministry of Health said Thursday. Previous casualty figures stood at 102 dead and 1,419 injured. The ministry said on its website that 128 people

Putin’s Crimea Move Cripples Opposition

Kremlin and Saint Basil's

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Yekaterina Kravtsova – March 21, 2014) During his triumphant speech on Crimea’s annexation earlier this week, President Vladimir Putin stressed that his policy was supported by an “absolute majority of Russians,” saying those who opposed it were “national traitors” acting on behalf of Western countries. While such a bold statement

Interfax: Lavrov dubs signing of EU-Ukraine deal political provisions geopolitical game

Maidan Square file photo

MOSCOW. March 21 (Interfax) – The purpose of signing the political provisions for the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement is not to take care of the interests of the Ukrainian people. This is an attempt to score in a geopolitical game, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said. “In my opinion, this step was not dictated by the

Kasparov: It’s time to stop Putin

Garry Kasparov file photo

In a Washington Post op-ed, Garry Kasparov argues that Putin’s motives in seizing Crimea are shaped more by greed than Russia’s national interests, and that assessments of possible future Kremlin actions should be based on pragmatic assessments of what Putin actually does: When Vladi­mir Putin formally annexed Crimea this week, he acted in defiance of

RIA Novosti: Putin Signs Final Crimea Reunification Decree

File Photo of Vladimir Putin Sitting at Desk

MOSCOW, March 21 (RIA Novosti) – Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree Friday on the ratification of the treaty providing for the reunification of the Crimean Peninsula with Russia. The treaty had been already ratified by both houses of the Russian parliament. Under the decree, the Russian Federation will have 85 regions, up from

RIA Novosti: Ukraine to Deploy More Troops on Border With Russia

Map of Commonwealth of Independent States, European Portion

KIEV, March 19 (RIA Novosti) – The head of Ukraine’s security advisory body said on Wednesday the country will deploy more troops along the border with Russia and introduce visas for Russians in a bid to “enhance border security.” Moscow and Kiev are on the brink of conflict following last month’s overthrow of pro-Russian President

RIA Novosti: Russia Gathering Facts on Violence, Nationalists in Ukraine

Sergei Lavrov file photo

MOSCOW (RIA Novosti, March 21) – Russia is collecting facts on lawless extremists and neo-nationalists in Ukraine as well as on the violence that has racked the country, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Friday. “We are scrupulously collecting all of the facts that show the lawlessness of neo-nationalists and extremists and would like to

The Pros And Cons Of Propaganda

Kremlin and Saint Basil's

(RFE/RL – rferl.org – Brian Whitmore – March 20, 2014) Propaganda works. Or at least it’s working for the time being. In concluding his speech to a joint session of parliament this week, Vladimir Putin claimed that 92 percent of Russians favored the annexation of Crimea. The number was inflated, but not by much, according

RIA Novosti: Federal State Is Only Solution for Ukraine says Sergei Lavrov

Sergei Lavrov file photo

MOSCOW, March 20 (RIA Novosti) – Making Ukraine a federal state is the only way to stabilize situation in the country, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Thursday. “We want to understand, who exactly will represent legitimate authorities in Kiev. In this regard we have a proposal: first of all, a constitutional reform should

Yanukovych’s indecision doomed Ukrainian people to suffer – Medvedev

Viktor Yanukovych file photo

MOSCOW. March 21 (Interfax) – Viktor Yanukovych’s indecision caused sufferings to Ukrainian people, who were entitled to peacefully protest against the authorities’ arbitrary rule, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said. “The [Ukrainian] authorities’ impotence, President Yanukovych’s personal weakness and indecision doomed the people of Ukraine to great sufferings. The people who took to the streets

Outspoken Kremlin Critic Appointed as Human Rights Ombudsman

Kremlin and Saint Basil's

(RIA Novosti – March 18, 2014) The Russian parliament voted Tuesday to appoint Ella Pamfilova to the post of Human Rights Ombudsman. President Vladimir Putin formally nominated Pamfilova, an outspoken Kremlin critic, for the post last month. The position, established in 1994, has powers to sue state agencies and the parliament on behalf of people

RIA Novosti: Ukrainian Forces Leave Navy Headquarters in Orderly Droves

Ukraine Map and Flag

MOSCOW, March 19 (RIA Novosti) – Representatives of the self-defense forces of Crimea have occupied Ukraine’s navy headquarters in the Crimean city Sevastopol, organizing the orderly departure of the Ukrainian military forces inside. Crimea’s self-defense forces broke through barricades surrounding the facility Wednesday morning, raising the Russian federal and navy flags in place of their

Merkel Warns on Rush to Russia Sanctions, Reflecting EU Split

EU Map

(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – James G. Neuger, Ian Wishart and Jonathan Stearns – March 20, 2014) German Chancellor Angela Merkel said the European Union won’t rush to impose economic sanctions on Russia for the annexation of Crimea, reflecting concerns that trade curbs would damage Europe’s tentative recovery. Germany, which is Russia’s biggest EU trading partner,

re: Crimea

Russian Naval Vessel in Ukrainian Port

Subject: Crimea Date:     Thu, 20 Mar 2014 From:     Sergei Roy <sergeiroy@yandex.ru> The other day I received a letter from a German friend concerning Ukraine. I could not leave a letter from an old friend unanswered, though I do very little writing these days. My reply expresses rather clearly, though not fully, my take on what

RIA Novosti: Official Andrey Nikitin says annexation of Crimea will benefit Russian economy, in the long run

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(RIA Novosti – March 19, 2014) Gorki, 19 March: Crimea’s becoming part of the Russian Federation may temporarily damage Russia’s investment image, but in the long run Russia will only benefit [from it], the director-general of the Strategic Initiatives Agency (ASI), Andrey Nikitin, has said. “I think that those who fell for these scare stories

Navalny Proposes Sanctions List to the West

Alexei Navalny file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Christopher Brennan – March 20, 2014) Opposition leader Alexei Navalny, currently under house arrest in connection with a criminal case against him, has written an op-ed for the New York Times in which he calls for sanctions on officials and businessmen connected to President Vladimir Putin. Saying that previous U.S.

‘Spare the Ukraine, Spoil the Russians’ – A Primer on Political-Philosophical Reconciliation

Kremlin and Saint Basil's

Subject:  Ukraine crisis and the need to educate on Russia Date:  Thu, 20 Mar 2014 From: Paul Grenier <psgrenier@gmail.com> ‘Spare the Ukraine, Spoil the Russians’ A Primer on Political-Philosophical Reconciliation By Paul Grenier Former Russian simultaneous interpreter, author most recently of Terror, Torture and Human Solidarity. After advanced study in Russian affairs, international relations and

RIA Novosti: US Advises Funds to Warn Investors About Russian Risk – Report

File Photo of Outdoor Electronic Sign with Russian Exchange Data

MOSCOW, March 20 (RIA Novosti) – US financial officials have contacted investment funds with Russian assets and advised them to inform clients about potential risk associated with the crisis in Ukraine, the Reuters news agency reported Thursday. The commission began counseling investment companies weeks ago, advising them to clearly communicate risks with investors and warning

Interfax: Moscow’s response to “mirror” U.S. sanctions, asymmetric measures being considered – Russian diplomat Sergei Ryabkov

Sergei Ryabkov file photo

MOSCOW/VIENNA. March 20 (Interfax) – Moscow may draft its own “blacklist” of American officials as part of a response that will “mirror” the sanctions imposed by the United States on Russia, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said. “If Washington restarts measures to escalate tensions and confrontation, as well as attempts to tell us what

Interfax: Sergei Lavrov says Western sanctions on Russia are not lawful

Sergei Lavrov file photo

MOSCOW. March 20 (Interfax) – The sanctions imposed on Russia by the European Union and the United States do not have international legal grounds, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said. “Unilateral sanctions have never done any good. They are not legal. And they do not have international legal grounds,” Lavrov said at a State Duma

Interfax: Russia’s UN envoy Vitaly Churkin denies claims of Ukrainian military facility raid in Simferopol

UN Building file photo

(Interfax – March 20, 2014) Moscow’s UN Ambassador Vitaly Churkin has said that Russian servicemen did not raid a Ukrainian military unit’s base in Simferopol. “There was absolutely no storming of a Ukrainian military facility by Russian servicemen about which the permanent representative of Ukraine spoke today,” Churkin said at the UN Security Council. “Having

U.S. Threatens Sanctions Against Politically Connected Tycoons

File Photo of Man Placing Stack of Large Bills into Inside Pocket of Suitcoat

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Anatoly Medetsky – March 20, 2014) The White House has thrown some light on who may be next in line to feel U.S. wrath over Crimea’s breakaway from Ukraine: businesspeople close to the Russian government. White House spokesman Jay Carney said the U.S. will add bite to its current sanctions

Right Sector against Ukraine’s accession to the EU

Ukraine Map and Flag

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – March 20, 2014) The Right Sector movement has called for Ukraine’s non-aligned status, its leader, Dmytro Yarosh, has said. “The Right Sector has not supported and does not support Ukraine’s accession to the EU. We believe that Ukraine should be a subject, rather than an object of geopolitics. We

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