Daily Ukraine Crisis Updates – May 7, 2014
Commentary | May 07, 2014
EWI offers a daily situation report on Ukraine.
Internal Security News
- (Interfax Ukraine) The Ukrainian Security Service said that 14 servicemen have died and 66 have been injured since special operations began in eastern Ukraine.
- A spokeswoman for the militants claimed that five pro-Russians were killed when Ukrainian troops stormed a barricade in Mariupol.
- Ukrainian forces seized the rebel-held city hall in Mariupol, driving out pro-Russian activists before withdrawing, with no attempt to hold the building. Pro-Russian militants subsequently re-occupied the building.
- (Interfax Ukraine) The Kiev City State Administration is negotiating with the Party of Regions, communists, and the All-Military Union, which intend to stage events on May 9 in order to rule out possible provocation.
International Observation News
- The OSCE offered to set up a fund to finance the implementation of a proposed disarmament plan in Ukraine, OSCE Chairperson-in-Office Didier Burkhalter announced at a joint news conference with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
- OSCE Chairman Burkhalter said that the organization has no plans as of yet to hold the Geneva II conference for analyzing the fulfillment of earlier agreements in the Ukrainian peace process.
- Russian President Vladimir Putin said that he was ready to discuss a way out of the Ukrainian crisis with the head of the OSCE.
Constitutional Reform News
- (Interfax Ukraine) Members of the Ukrainian Cabinet of Ministers will hold negotiations with representatives of the Kharkiv region on Wednesday to discuss constitutional reform in Kharkiv, Ukraine's foreign minister Andriy Deschytsia said.
- Russian President Vladimir Putin said that Russia has withdrawn forces from its border with Ukraine, where NATO said there were approximately 40,000 Russian troops positioned. However, a NATO military official subsequently stated that NATO has no indication that Russia has withdrawn its forces from close to the Ukraine border despite Russian President Vladimir Putin's assertion that they had returned to their training areas.
- U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Victoria Nuland said that should the Donetsk and Luhansk separatist referendum occur, and Russia follows up with recognition and deployment of forces, the actions will trigger sanctions on Russian’s finance, energy and defense sectors.
- (RIA Novosti) The Russian Foreign Ministry issued a statement urging Kiev's government to stop what it alleges to be human rights violations. “The condemnation by the high-ranking official from the UN’s Human Rights body, violence and tyranny in Ukraine confirms that the illegitimate Kiev authorities under the cover of their Western patrons are continuing gross violations of conventional legal norms,” the statement said.
- European Council President Van Rompuy said that the EU is open to holding more talks with Ukraine, Russia and the U.S. to try to defuse the Ukraine crisis.
- Russia suspended a 2001 agreement on mutual military inspections with Lithuania amid growing worries in the Baltic region over Moscow's assertiveness in Ukraine.
- A spokeswoman for German Chancellor Merkel’s office stated that Germany is involved in international efforts to stop an escalation of the Ukraine crisis and plan a follow-up process to April’s Geneva agreement.
- Prime Minister of Japan Shinzo Abe said that Japan will send ten observers to help oversee Ukraine’s presidential elections scheduled for May 25.
- The United Kingdom will pressure Russia into fulfilling the Geneva commitments, British Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs William Hague said at a press conference in Kiev.
- President Putin urged that a planned May 11 referendum on autonomy for southeast Ukraine be postponed.
- (ITAR-TASS) The government of the self-proclaimed People’s Republic of Donetsk intended to hold a May 8 vote to determine whether or not they will postpone the planned May 11 referendum.
- (ITAR-TASS) German FM spokesman Martin Schaefer said that Germany will not recognize the May 11 referendum.
- (ITAR-TASS) Ukrainian presidential candidate Petro Poroshenko stated that in his opinion, "there is no legal basis" for a May 11 referendum on Donetsk’s status.
- President Putin said that Ukraine's May 25 presidential election is a step "in the right direction". However, he said the vote would decide nothing unless the rights of "all citizens" were protected.
- (Interfax Ukraine) All sides in the Geneva negotiations must recognize Ukraine's right to hold presidential elections, British Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs William Hague said at Kiev press conference.
- (Interfax Ukraine) Presidential candidate Yulia Tymoshenko met with British Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs William Hague to discuss the Ukrainian situation and the upcoming presidential election. Tymoshenko stressed the election’s importance, and the need for the expression of will by Ukrainian citizens, including eastern and southern region residents.
- (Interfax Ukraine) The Interregional Council of Territorial Communities of Southeast Ukraine plans to hold a congress of representatives from territorial communities in the Donetsk, Luhansk, Dnipropetrovsk, Zaporizhia, Kharkiv, Kherson, Odessa, and Mykolaiv regions in Dnipropetrovsk on May 11.
- Unaffiliated presidential candidate Petro Poroshenko maintained the highest presidential electoral rating among all candidates, followed by Batkivschyna Party leader Yulia Tymoshenko and parliamentarian Sergiy Tigipko.