EWI offers a daily situation report on Ukraine.
Internal Security News:
- (Interfax Ukraine) Ukraine’s Security Services (SBU) announced that pro-Russian militants were holding approximately 40 people hostage in Sloviansk, including seven OSCE inspectors who were abducted on April 25 and an unknown number of Ukrainian SBU officers. The OSCE hostages were featured in a press conference organized by the militants. An eighth OSCE inspector was released on medical grounds.
- Ukraine’s SBU reported that Igor Strelkov, whom they claim is a Russian military officer, was behind the abduction of OSCE inspectors.
- (RIA Novosti) The self-proclaimed mayor of Sloviansk proposed an exchange of captured pro-Russian militants for the abducted OSCE inspectors.
- The pro-Russian mayor of Ukraine's second-biggest city, Kharkiv, was in serious condition after he was shot in the back. Acting Ukrainian President Turchynov ordered an investigation into the alleged assassination attempt.
- (RIA Novsoti) A Ukrainian SBU member and an Interior Ministry official were injured during a shootout near a Kramatorsk airfield.
- (RIA Novosti) Pro-Russian activists in Konstantinovka (southeastern Ukraine) declared a rally inside a seized government building, stating that they would continue until there is a referendum on the region’s status.
International Observation News:
- (RIA Novosti) The OSCE announced that it will hold an emergency meeting on April 28 to discuss the southeastern Ukraine situation after protesters detained several OSCE observers. Russia indicated that it would participate in the talks.
- The Russian Foreign Ministry stated that possible instances of indiscriminate and disproportionate use of force by current Kiev authorities against protestors in southeastern Ukraine should raise concerns among the OSCE.
- The U.S. announced a new round of sanctions on Russia that includes two members of Russian President Vladimir Putin's "inner circle," and measures that prevent Moscow from obtaining military technology.
- The EU is expected to announce new sanctions targeting individuals and companies close to Russian President Putin, according to U.S. President Obama.
- (ITAR-TASS) Ukraine halted canal water supply to Crimea, shutting off 85% of the region’s fresh water.
- (ITAR-TASS) Vitaly Churkin, Russia’s ambassador to the UN, said that Russia “may remember its permission to use its army” if events turn bad in southeastern Ukraine.
- China's foreign ministry restated its opposition to placing sanctions on Russia in response to the Ukraine crisis.
- (ITAR-TASS) Foreign ministers of Russia and Germany discussed the detention of OSCE observers in Ukraine by phone.
- (Interfax Ukraine) The European Commission reported that signing a memorandum on reverse gas supplies through Slovakia will enhance Ukraine's energy security and help the country gain access to a variety of supply sources.
- (Interfax Ukraine) Ukrainian PM Yastenyuk stated that Ukraine and its national oil and gas company, Naftogaz Ukrainy, have confirmed their readiness to immediately pay gas debts totaling $2.2 billion. They will make on-time payments for subsequent deliveries if Gazprom agrees to maintain the price of natural gas at the Q1 level: $268.5 per 1,000 cubic meters.