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Old 01-03-14, 23:02   #1
 
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Important Russia Warns RAF of Dangerous Interceptions & HMS Warship to Keep its Distance



Revealed: The Forgotten Treaty which could Drag the US and UK into WAR with Russia if Putin's troops Intervene in Ukraine


  • The agreement sees signatories promise to protect Ukraine's borders
  • It was signed by Bill Clinton, John Major, Boris Yeltsin and Leonid Kuchma in 1994
  • Ukrainian parliament has now reached out directly to all the countries who signed the treaty
  • Putin currently has 150,000 troops on Ukraine's borders and it is reported some have crossed into the country
  • President Obama says he is 'deeply concerned' by the news
  • The US and Britain have both made 'crisis calls' to President Putin to warn him to respect territorial boundaries


DETAILS OF THE TREATY:




By Daily Mail UK, 1 March 2014

A treaty signed in 1994 by the US and Britain could pull both countries into a war to protect Ukraine if President Putin's troops cross into the country.
Bill Clinton, John Major, Boris Yeltsin and Leonid Kuchma – the then-rulers of the USA, UK, Russia and Ukraine - agreed to the The Budapest Memorandum as part of the denuclearization of former Soviet republics after the dissolution of the Soviet Union.
Technically it means that if Russia has invaded Ukraine then it would be difficult for the US and Britain to avoid going to war.
The revelation comes as reports suggest the Kremlin was moving up to 2,000 troops across the Black Sea from Novorossiysk to their fleet base at Sevastopol.

At least 20 men wearing the uniform of the Russian fleet and carrying automatic rifles surrounded a Ukrainian border guard post in a standoff near the port yesterday.


Scroll Down for More Videos




The Budapest Memorandum was signed in 1991 by Bill Clinton, John Major, Boris Yeltsin and Leonid Kuchma -
the then-rulers of the USA, UK, Russia and Ukraine.
It promises to protect Ukraine's borders, in return for Ukraine giving up its nuclear weapons

Last night it was still unclear the exact scale of Russian boots on the ground in Crimea or the identity of gunmen who have taken over airports in Simferopol and Sevastopol – though reports suggest they are Russian marines or Moscow- controlled militias.
The action came as President Obama delivered blunt warnings to Moscow.
'We are now deeply concerned by reports of military movements taken by the Russian Federation inside of Ukraine,' he told reporters at the White House.
'Any violation of Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity would be deeply destabilizing,' he said in a brief appearance.

'The United States will stand with the international community in affirming that there will be costs for any military intervention in Ukraine.'
U.S. officials also said the President could scrap plans to attend an international summit in Russia and take negotiations on deepening trade ties with the country off the table in response to Russian involvement in the Ukraine.

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel added: "This could be a very dangerous situation if this continues in a provocative way."

Asked about options in a CBS News interview, he said that "We're trying to deal with a diplomatic focus, that's the appropriate, responsible approach."

Both the U.S. and the UK are advising against all non-essential trips to Ukraine - especially Crimea.




Former British Ambassador to Moscow Sir Tony Brenton, who served as British Ambassador from 2004 to 2008, said in an interview
that war could be an option 'if we do conclude the [Budapest] Memorandum is legally binding.'


NATO also asked Russia not to take action that could escalate tension. However Moscow responded by telling the organization to 'refrain' from provocative statements on Ukraine and respect its 'non-bloc' status.

Sir Tony Brenton, who served as British Ambassador from 2004 to 2008, said that war could be an option 'if we do conclude the [Budapest] Memorandum is legally binding.'
It promises to protect Ukraine's borders, in return for Ukraine giving up its nuclear weapons.
Kiev has demanded the agreement is activated after insisting their borders had been violated.

In response Mr Brenton said in a BBC radio interview: 'If indeed this is a Russian invasion of Crimea and if we do conclude the [Budapest] Memorandum is legally binding then it's very difficult to avoid the conclusion that we're going to go to war with Russia'.

Quote:
THE BUDAPEST REFERENDUM

Budapest Memorandum on Security Assurances was a international treaty signed on February, 5, 1994, in Budapest.
The diplomatic document saw signatories make promises to each other as part of the denuclearization of former Soviet republics after the dissolution of the Soviet Union.
It was signed by Bill Clinton, John Major, Boris Yeltsin and Leonid Kuchma – the then-rulers of the USA, UK, Russia and Ukraine.
The agreement promises to protest Ukraine's borders in return for Ukraine giving up its nuclear weapons.
It is not a formal treaty, but rather, a diplomatic document.
It was an unprecedented case in contemporary international life and international law.
Whether is it legally binding in complex.
'It is binding in international law, but that doesn't mean it has any means of enforcement,' says Barry Kellman is a professor of law and director of the International Weapons Control Center at DePaul University's College of Law told Radio Free Europe.
Ukraine accused Russia of a 'military invasion and occupation', saying Russian troops have taken up positions around a coast guard base and two airports on its strategic Crimea peninsula.
Russia kept silent on the accusations, as the crisis deepened between two of Europe's largest countries.
Any Russian military incursion in Crimea would dramatically raise the stakes in Ukraine's conflict, which saw pro-Russian President Viktor Yanukovych flee last weekend after three months of anti-government protests. Yanukovych vowed Friday at a news conference in Russia to 'keep fighting for the future of Ukraine,' though he called any military action 'unacceptable.'
Moscow has vowed to protect Russian-speaking Ukrainians in Crimea, where it has a major naval base, and Ukraine and the West have warned Russia to stay away.
Russia did not confirm its troops were involved in Friday's action in Crimea, which would be a major escalation.

In Kiev, Ukraine's parliament adopted a resolution demanding that Russia halt steps it says are aimed against Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity, and called for a U.N. Security Council meeting on the crisis.

'I can only describe this as a military invasion and occupation,' Ukraine's newly named interior minister, Arsen Avakov, wrote in a Facebook post.

The chief of Ukraine's security council, Andriy Parubiy, seemed to strike a less strident tone later in the day, saying gunmen had tried to 'seize' the airports in the Crimean cities of Simferopol and Sevastopol but insisting in comments to the Interfax news agency that 'de-facto the airports are controlled by the law enforcement bodies of Ukraine.'

Ukraine's State Border Guard Service also said about 30 Russian marines from Russia's Black Sea Fleet - which is based in Sevastopol - had taken up position outside the Ukrainian Coast Guard base in the area. It said the marines said they were there to prevent any weapons at the base from being seized by extremists.

Russia's defense ministry had no comment.

Yanukovych made his first public appearance since fleeing Ukraine in the southern Russian city of Rostov-on-Don, not far from the Ukrainian border. It was the first confirmation that he had left the country, and he said he was 'forced' to do so only after his family received threats.

'I intend to keep fighting for the future of Ukraine,' he said.

Yanukovych said he supports Crimea's residents who are worried about 'nationalists' in Kiev and added that Russia cannot stand by while events in Ukraine unfold. He denied, however, that this amounts to a call for military intervention.

'Any military action in this situation is unacceptable,' he said.




Tensions rising: A Russian soldier on an armoured personnel carrier halted on a road in Ukraine
around 20 miles from Sebastapol, where there is a large Russian military presence





Armed Russian navy servicemen surround a Ukrainian border guard base in Balaclava, in the Crimea region



An armed Ukrainian border guard looks out of a window as the base is surrounded by armed Russian navy servicemen in Balaclava

The prosecutor-general's office in Kiev said it would seek Yanukovych's extradition to Ukraine, where he is wanted on suspicion of mass murder in last week's violent clashes between protesters and police, during which over 80 people were killed.

Associated Press journalists approaching the Sevastopol airport found the road leading up to it blocked by two military trucks and a handful of gunmen wearing camouflage uniforms and carrying assault rifles.

A car with Russian military plates was stopped at the roadblock. A man wearing a military uniform with a Russian flag on his sleeve got out of the car and was allowed to enter on foot after a brief discussion with the gunmen.

The moment Armed Men Storm Crimea Government Building




At the airport serving Simferopol, commercial flights were landing and taking off despite dozens of armed men in military uniforms without markings patrolling with assault rifles. They didn't stop or search people leaving or entering the airport, and refused to talk to journalists.

One man who identified himself only as Vladimir said the men were part of the Crimean People's Brigade, which he described as a self-defense unit ensuring that no 'radicals and fascists' arrive from other parts of Ukraine. There was no way to verify his account.

The airport deployments came a day after masked gunmen with rocket-propelled grenades and sniper rifles seized the parliament and government offices in Simferopol and raised the Russian flag. Ukrainian police cordoned off the area but didn't confront the gunmen. They remained in control of the buildings Friday.
The Russian foreign and defense ministries had no comment. Russia's state RIA Novosti and Interfax cited an unnamed official from the Russian Black Sea Fleet denying involvement, saying Russian servicemen stationed in Crimea have not moved into the airports and denying that the Russian military was in control there.

Tensions between the two countries were high, however. Russia continued with massive combat readiness exercises involving most of its troops in western and southern Russia that it said were unrelated to the Ukraine conflict. The moves were reminiscent of Cold War brinksmanship.




Russian military forces are blockading an airport in the Black Sea port of Sevastopol in Crimea,
an act Ukraine's new interior minister has announced branded an 'armed invasion'




As events in the Crimea region heighten tensions with neighboring Russia, this morning armed men
also took over the other main Crimean airport, Simferopol, according to a Facebook post by Mr Avakov




Dozens of armed men in military uniforms without markings were seen patrolling the airport in Simferopol, the capital of Crimea



The move came as U.S. Vice President Joe Biden told Ukraine's new prime minister that the
U.S. welcomes the formation of the country's new government


The Kremlin, in a statement published late Thursday, said President Vladimir Putin had instructed the government to 'maintain contacts with the counterparts in Kiev in what concerns trade and economic ties between Russia and Ukraine.'
Moscow has been sending mixed signals about Ukraine but pledged to respect its territorial integrity. Putin has long dreamed of pulling Ukraine, a country of 46 million people considered the cradle of Russian civilization, closer into Moscow's orbit.

Meanwhile, Swiss prosecutors announced they had launched a criminal investigation against Yanukovych and his son Aleksander over 'aggravated money laundering.'
They said police and Geneva's chief prosecutor conducted a search and seized documents Thursday at the premises of a company owned by Aleksander Yanukovych.



Ukraine's ex-President Yanukovych has made his first public appearance since being ousted,
telling a news conference that he was going to fight for his country's future

Switzerland and Austria both said they would freeze any assets Yanukovych and his entourage might have in those countries.

Ukraine's population is divided in loyalties between Russia and the West, with much of western Ukraine advocating closer ties with the European Union while eastern and southern regions look to Russia for support.

Crimea, a southeastern peninsula of Ukraine that has semi-autonomous status, was seized by Russian forces in the 18th century under Catherine the Great, and was once the crown jewel in Russian and then Soviet empires.

It became part of Ukraine in 1954 when Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev transferred jurisdiction from Russia, a move that was a mere formality until the 1991 Soviet collapse meant Crimea landed in an independent Ukraine.

In a bid to shore up Ukraine's fledgling administration, the International Monetary Fund has said it is 'ready to respond' to Ukraine's bid for financial assistance; Ukraine's finance ministry has said it needs $35 billion over the next two years to avoid default.

The European Union is also considering emergency loans for a country that is the chief conduit of Russian natural gas to western Europe.

And Putin, in his statement, asked his government to 'hold consultations with foreign partners including the IMF and the G8 nations to provide financial aid to Ukraine.'




Read More, Click Below;

VIDEOS:




Obama Delivers a Powerful Warning To Russia To Stay Out of Ukraine



US Kerry warns Russia: Stay out of the Ukraine



The moment Armed Men Storm Crimea Government Building



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Old 03-03-14, 21:04   #2
 
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Update re: Russia Warns US "We can Reduce You to Radioactive Ash

Minutes from WAR: Ukraine claims Russian Forces have Demanded the Crews
of two Warships Surrender Within the Hour or Face being Attacked

  • Russia has threatened to storm two warships in Sevastopol
  • Kremlin has also reportedly ordered Ukrainian forces in Crimea to surrender or face attack - with a 3am deadline
  • Ukraine admits pro-Russian troops have seized Crimean military bases
  • Unidentified armed men seized ferry terminal in Kerch, close to Russia
  • It is feared the terminal could be used to bring in more troops
  • William Hague warned Russia of 'consequences and costs' today
  • Russia is believed to have 6,000 troops in the region, claims U.S.
  • Ukrainian acting PM says his nation will 'never' give up Crimea
  • Russian authorities block access to Ukraine protest pages on social media
By Daily Mail UK, 3 March 2014


Ukraine says Russian forces controlling the strategic region of Crimea are demanding that the crew of two Ukrainian warships surrender.

Ukrainian Defense Ministry spokesman Maksim Prauta said four Russian navy ships were blocking Ukraine's anti-submarine warship Ternopil and the command ship Slavutych in Sevastopol's harbour.

He said the Russians ordered the crew to surrender within the hour or face Russians storming and seizing the ships and crew.

It has also been reported that Ukrainian forces in Crimea have until 3am to surrender or face attack from the Russian fleet.



Russian forces in Crimea have reportedly ordered the crew of the Ukrainian anti-submarine ship 'Ternopil' (pictured) to surrender





A Russian Black Sea Navy Grisha V type corvette
'Suzdalets' is seen off the coast of Sevastopol, Crimea, Ukraine yesterday






Russian Navy crew members on a patrol boat guard the Russian military ships of the Black Sea Fleet with destroyers
'Smetlivyy' (back left) and 'Kerch' (back right) in Sevastopol, Crimea yesterday


Troops with no insignia surround Crimea military base




The ultimatum came from the commander of Russia's Black Sea Fleet Alexander Vitko, which has a base in Crimea where Russian forces are now in control, according to the Interfax news agency.
According to the agency, it reads:

Quote:
'If they do not surrender before 5am (3am GMT) tomorrow, a real assault will be started against units and divisions of the armed forces across Crimea.'

It comes as Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev spoke about the situation in Ukraine with U.S. Vice President Joe Biden by telephone today.
Interfax reports that Medvedev 'declared that it is necessary to protect the interests of all Ukrainian citizens, including residents of Crimea, and citizens of Russia who are located in Ukraine.'





A pro-Russian soldier stands by a billboard with a map of Crimea and bearing the words
'Autonomous Republic of Crimea' in the port of Kerch, Ukraine.


A Russian commander has reportedly told Ukrainian forces in the region to stand down or face attack




Hundreds of unidentified gunmen arrived at a Crimean base in a 13-strong convoy of Russian vehicles





Carrying on as normal: A woman walks past the unidentified gunmen surrounding the base in Privolnoye




Surrounded: Unidentified armed men prepare their camp in front of Ukraine's infantry base in Privolnoye

Ukraine's military admitted today that pro-Russian troops have surrounded or taken over 'practically all' its military facilities in Crimea - a move that Russia's foreign minister defended as a necessary protection for the ethnic Russians on the Black Sea peninsula.

'This is a question of defending our citizens and compatriots, ensuring human rights, especially the right to life,' Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said in Geneva, where he was attending U.N. meetings.

There have been no reports, however, of any hostilities toward Russian-speaking in Ukraine during the country's four months of political upheaval.
The Russian Foreign Ministry also issued a statement saying that Moscow believes Ukraine must honor its February 21 agreement to form a new national unity government.

Russia will face diplomatic, political, and economic pressure in response to its violation of Ukraine's sovereignty, David Cameron has said.
The Prime Minister, who chaired a meeting of the National Security Council to discuss the crisis, said that the world needed to send a 'clear message' to Moscow.
Speaking in Downing Street, he said:

Quote:
'What we want to see is a de-escalation rather than a continuation down the path that the Russian government has taken, violating the sovereignty and territorial integrity of another country.
'So we shall have to bring to bear diplomatic, political, economic and other pressures in order to make this point.
'That is the very clear message the whole world needs to send to the Russian government.


''PUTIN IS PLAYING CHICKEN WITH THE WEST' - DIPLOMACY EXPERT

Carina O’Reilly, lecturer in International Relations at Anglia Ruskin University and former Deputy Editor of Jane’s Intelligence Review, said:

Quote:
'What we’re seeing in Crimea right now is Vladimir Putin playing chicken with the West. He’s gambling that the EU and the U.S. have no stomach for conflict, not even a trade war.
'Russia doesn’t want a serious war and doesn’t think it’ll get one. It is stamping its ownership on its sphere of influence, looking to leave the new Kiev government crippled.
'It wants to leave ordinary Ukrainians with a stark choice: an untested government that’s thrown in its lot with a West which can’t send anything more useful than fact-finding delegations, or a powerful and dominant Russia.
'The EU also now faces a stark choice. If Russia can be neither forced nor persuaded out of the Crimea, and Ukraine is left physically divided and politically paralysed, the EU’s credibility will be shot - and if Germany prevents the U.S. from taking stronger action, diplomatically or otherwise, its credibility with the US will be deeply damaged as well.
'This is a crisis for more than just Ukraine. It will shape the West’s relationship with Russia for years to come.'



Show of strength: Russian President Vladimir Putin, centre, and Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, left, and
the commander of the Western Military District Anatoly Sidorov, right, set out to watch a military exercise near St Petersburg, Russia, today






Salute: The exercise took place at Kirillovsky firing ground





Putin on Monday watched Russian tanks and armoured vehicles trundle across the training ground


Earlier today pro-Russian troops took over a ferry terminal on the easternmost tip of Crimea close to Russia today, exacerbating fears that Moscow is planning to bring even more troops into this strategic Black Sea region.
The seizure of the terminal in the Ukrainian city of Kerch about 12 miles by boat to Russia, comes as the West try to figure out ways to halt and reverse the Russian incursion.

Early on Monday, soldiers were operating the terminal, which serves as a common departure point for many Russian-bound ships.

The men refused to identify themselves, but they spoke Russian and the vehicles transporting them had Russian license plates. Today, Ukraine called for 'real steps' of assistance to be taken by world leaders.





Love in the face of war: A woman kisses a Ukrainian serviceman through the gate in the village of Lyubimovka,
some 50 miles southwest of Simferopol, Crimea's capital





A woman kisses a Ukrainian serviceman through the fence in Lyubimovka. Russia
has defended the deadline as a measure to protect both Russians and Ukrainians in Crimea





Relatives of Ukrainian servicemen. The sign reads: 'No to war!'




A Ukrainian woman speaks with an armed man in military uniform, believed to be a Russian soldier,
part of a unit blocking the Ukrainian navy base in Novoozerniy in Crimea





Ukrainian soldiers (back) speak with armed men in military uniform, believed to be Russian soldiers in the village of Perevalnoye





Ukrainian soldiers bolster defensive barricades against possible Russian aggression
at Feodosija marine base, in Crimea





A Ukrainian Air Force military aircraft flies above a Ukrainian navy base which was blocked by soldiers
believed to be from Russia, in Novoozerniy village near of Feodosia, Crimea, today


Troops that Ukraine says are Russian soldiers have occupied airports in Crimea, smashed equipment at an air base and besieged a Ukrainian infantry base in this peninsula.

Hundreds of unidentified gunmen who arrived in a 13-strong convoy of Russian vehicles surrounded a Crimean infantry base yesterday as Ukraine and Russia inched closer towards all-out war.

Meanwhile Ukraine’s acting prime minister, Arseniy Yatseniuk, said today his country would never give up Crimea.
Russian forces have taken control of the Black Sea peninsula, which is part of Ukraine, but Yatseniuk told reporters: 'No one will give up Crimea to anyone.'
'Any attempt of Russia to grab Crime will have no success at all. Give us some time,' he said at a news conference with British Foreign Secretary Wiliam Hague, who is visiting Kiev.





An armed man stands outside the cabinet of ministers building in Simferopol today.

Russia has started a build-up of armoured vehicles on the Russian side of a narrow stretch of water between Russia and the Ukrainian region of Crimea





An armed man, believed to be a Russian serviceman, in the village of Perevalnoye








Similarity? A heavily-armed soldier displaying no identifying insignia maintains watch
in a street in Simferopol. A Russian soldier stands guard at a checkpoint during the 2008 war with Georgia



Yatseniuk called on the West for political and economic support and said Crimea remained part of his country - but conceded there were 'for today, no military options on the table'.

In a series of tense photographs, outnumbered troops could be seen on the inside of the military unit in the village of Perevalne, outside Simferopol, guarding the entrance with a tank.

The scenes come as Russian forces moved deeper into Crimea and amassed on the Ukrainian border, while Ukrainian leaders mobilised all its forces and placed them in a state of combat-readiness.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov says Russian troops that have streamed into Ukraine are protecting his country's citizens living there.
Lavrov said on Monday that it's necessary to use Russian troops in Ukraine 'until the normalisation of the political situation'.





Yesterday NATO warned Russia military action against Ukraine was against international law and expressed grave concern over the Russian parliament's authorisation of the use of force.

Yatseniuk earlier said 'we are on the brink of disaster' while the actions of Russian President Vladimir Putin were said to amount to a declaration of war.

'This is not a threat: this is actually the declaration of war to my country,' he added.

Acting President Oleksander Turchinov said: 'Any attempt to attack military installations is in fact direct military aggression against our country and the Russian military and the Russian leadership will be held responsible.'



Military personnel, believed to be Russian servicemen, walk outside the territory of a
Ukrainian military unit in the village of Perevalnoye outside Simferopol today





Russia claims its troops have not 'deployed abroad'





Soldiers who were among several hundred that took up positions
around a Ukrainian military base walk towards their parked vehicles on Sunday





Ominous advance: A convoy of Russian troops pictured moving towards
the Crimean regional capital of Sinferopol on Sunday morning



Kiev called for 'solidarity' from foreign countries and highlighted a 1994 treaty where the U.S. and Britain guaranteed Ukrainian borders.
British Foreign Secretary William Hague warned Russia today of 'consequences and costs'
but could not give any details of what that might mean in practice.

'It is not an acceptable way to behave and there will be consequences and costs,'
Hague said in Kiev, two days after Russian President Vladimir Putin got the green light to send Russian troops to Ukraine from parliament.

Yesterday, Ukraine's newly appointed Navy chief defected and pledged his allegiance to the Crimean region.

Britain announced its ministers and officials will boycott the Paralympic games in Sochi, Russia.

President Vladimir Putin defended Russia's action against 'ultranationalist forces' - and told U.S. President Barack Obama he reserved the right to take any further military action.




A Ukrainian serviceman stands guard at the territory as unidentified troops gather outside

Russia's internet monitoring agency has blocked 13 web pages linked to the Ukraine protest movement which helped oust the country's Russia-leaning president last week.
Roskomnadzor said in a statement published online that it had been ordered by the general prosecutor's office to shut down the pages on Russia's leading social media website, VKontakte.
The agency said the groups 'propagandised the activity of Ukrainian nationalist groups', and accused them of encouraging 'terrorist activity' and 'participation in unsanctioned mass actions'.

The largest pro-demonstration group, which has more than 500,000 members, was not accessible to users on Russian territory today.
While much of Russian media is state-controlled, the internet has so far remained largely free from censorship and has provided an active forum for anti-government criticism.


STAND-OFF ON FRONTLINE AS RUTHLESS PUTIN TURNS SCREW

FROM IAN BIRRELL IN PEREVALNE, CRIMEA:
Quote:

In front of me, three young Ukrainian soldiers peered out nervously through the bars of the gate at their army depot. Just a few yards away behind me, a dozen men from Russia’s special forces swaggered around with automatic weapons.
For last night at least, this windblown military base in the middle of the Crimea was the strange frontline of the new Cold War that is so alarming the world.
The troops of two neighbouring nations were in a tense stand-off – a symbol of the increasing hostility between Ukraine and Russia. In the latest astonishing Russian provocation, a convoy including at least 13 troop vehicles, each containing 30 soldiers and bearing Russian licence plates, turned up at the Perevalne base. They were supported by four armed vehicles with mounted
machine guns.





On the brink:The situation at the base in Privolnoye remained very tense on Sunday

The Ukrainians positioned a tank at the gate in response. ‘We don’t know anything,’ one soldier told me, as he smoked cigarettes and joked with two young colleagues.

The Russian soldiers also refused to comment. I tried to speak to them, but they just stared back in silence. Local supporters of Russia turned up during the day to show their backing for the latest incursion. By last night, some had set up a tented camp and lit a brazier.

Several told me it was a peace camp – although they added that they would fight ‘the bandit government’ in Kiev. One army veteran who spent time inside the camp – just 20 minutes from the regional capital Simferopol – claimed there had been no contact from the defence ministry, leaving the solders unsure how to respond. ‘These young men have been betrayed,’ he said.

Ukrainian marines were also reported to be barricaded into their base in Feodosia, where their commander Dmytro Delyatytski said he had rejected Russian demands to give up their weapons.

‘We are preparing our defences,’ he said. ‘We have orders.’

Once again, these were belligerent moves from Moscow played out deliberately in front of the world’s media. On previous days, armed Russian soldiers have strutted around airports and surrounded key government buildings. The Russian flag flies over the regional parliament – and most people on the streets seem to support Moscow over those they call ‘fascists’ in Kiev. ‘We think the people who have come to power in Kiev did so illegally,’ said Yuri, 48, a manager in higher education. And this is the growing concern.




The soldiers that took up position around the Ukrainian infantry base appeared to be relaxed,
but were very heavily armed and wore full body armour


The majority of people in Crimea are ethnic Russians – the peninsula was only given to Ukraine 60 years ago – so there has been little opposition to the Russian-backed rush for independence except among minority Tatars. But the rest of the country is linguistically and politically divided – and now experts fear the cracks opening up in the Russian-speaking east of Ukraine. Bloggers over the border even talk about a ‘Russian Spring’.

There were large pro-Russian rallies in at least six major eastern cities at the weekend. In Kharkiv, the country’s second biggest city, 111 people were reported injured in clashes between pro- and anti-Russian supporters on Saturday, with counter-protests yesterday.

The pro-Russian mayor alleged that a far-right group threw explosives into public transport, opened fire on protesters and left behind 120 bombs. Moscow propaganda makes great play of ‘fascist’ groups involved in the Kiev protests.

Politicians in Kiev fear Russia is deliberately stoking the trouble; one well-placed source claimed Moscow bussed in paid activists and military personnel from over the border disguised as tourists.

There is growing fear that these protests could be used to justify military action. Russia has 150,000 troops on exercises just over the border – and President Vladimir Putin was given parliamentary approval on Saturday to use them anywhere in Ukraine to defend Russian people or interests.

‘Putin wants to see civil war but it is not going to happen,’ said Oleh Rybachuk, former deputy prime minister. ‘Some people may fall for their games and propaganda – but far from the majority. His tactics are going to fail.’

Others are less optimistic.

‘This is going to end in bloodshed and civil war,’

said one Russian journalist in Ukraine yesterday.

On Sunday morning Russian troops in 12 vehicles moved across Crimea from Sevastopol - their Black Sea base - to regional capital Simferopol, in a significant and ominous advance.

Hundreds of unidentified gunmen arrived in a convoy outside Ukraine's infantry base in Privolnoye in its Crimea region.
The convoy included at least 13 troop vehicles each containing 30 soldiers and four armoured vehicles with mounted machine guns.
The vehicles - which have Russian licence plates - have surrounded the base and are blocking Ukrainian soldiers from entering or leaving it.




A woman sweeps away broken glass as two unidentified armed men guard the entrance to the
local government building in downtown Simferopol, Ukraine, on Sunday






Russian forces are seeking to disarm Ukrainian military facilities on the peninsula without a fight.

They have taken weapons from a radar base and naval training facility in Ukraine's Crimea region and urged personnel to side with the peninsula's 'legitimate' leaders, Interfax news agency said on Sunday.
It quoted a Ukrainian Defence Ministry source as saying the Russian servicemen had taken pistols, rifles and ammunition cartridges from the radar post near in the town of Sudak and taken them away by car.




Heavily-armed troops displaying no identifying insignia and who were mingling with local pro-Russian militants stand guard
outside a local government building on Sunday in Simferopol, as reports emerged on Russian troops massing on Ukraine's borders






Plea: The new government of Ukraine has appealed to the United Nations Security
Council for help against growing Russian intervention in Crimea


Another group of Russian military had also removed weapons from a Ukrainian navy training centre in Sevastopol.
Many soldiers have simply switched to the Russian side, it has been claimed.
'Ukrainian servicemen are tendering their resignations and coming over to the side of the new Crimean authorities en masse,' reported Interfax today, though Ukrainian officials denied this.
Russian troops are also massing close to the Ukrainian borders across a wide area. For example, heavily armoured forces from Samara are heading for the border with the Kharkiv region.
The same is seen at the border with Chernigov, which is only 120 miles from Kiev.
A huge deployment of armoured vehicles and troops are in the Russian port of Novorossiysk from where they could be speedily shipped to Crimea.




Military personnel stand next to an armoured personnel carrier
in the Crimean port city of Feodosiya on Sunday




Ukraine mobilised on Sunday for war and called up its reserves, after Russian President Vladimir Putin
threatened to invade in the biggest confrontation between Moscow and the West since the Cold War



PREPARING THEIR TROOPS

Quote:
Crimea is now effectively controlled by Russia directly or with the help of so-called self defence units - which in reality include Russian troops and GRU intelligence personnel.
The new government in Kiev has been powerless to react. However, the Defence Ministry was ordered to conduct a call-up of reserves - theoretically all men up to 40 years old.
However, Ukraine would struggle to find extra guns or uniforms for significant numbers of them.
Ukraine's reserves are thought to number around one million and with the regular army at about 135,000.
Russia can call upon 845,000 professional soldiers and two million reservists.

Russian sources are also complaining of 'provocations' in both Ukraine and Russia by 'unknown armed men' - doubtless these are a useful pretext for Russian action.
Ukraine has put its armed forces on full combat alert.

There has been no sign of ethnic Russians facing attacks in Crimea, where they make up about 60 per cent of the population, or elsewhere in Ukraine.
The action was one of many dramatic developments from the region yesterday.

After an emergency meeting of NATO ambassadors in Brussels, the alliance called on Russia to bring its forces back to bases and refrain from interfering in Ukraine.
'We urge both parties to immediately seek a peaceful solution through bilateral dialogue, with international facilitation ... and through the dispatch of international observers under the auspices of the United Nations Security Council or the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe,' NATO said in a statement.

Ukraine is not a NATO member, meaning the U.S. and Europe are not obligated to come to its defense, but the country has taken part in some alliance exercises.

Anders Fogh Rasmussen spoke Sunday before going into a meeting of the North Atlantic Council, the alliance's political decision-making body.

‘What Russia is doing now in Ukraine violates the principles of the United Nations charter. It threatens peace and security in Europe. Russia must stop its military activities and threats,’ he said.




Armed men stand guard at the local government headquarters in Simferopol, Crimea




Ukrainian navy crew members stand on deck of the Ukrainian Navy's
corvette Ternopil in the port of Sevastopol, Crimea





A man holds a sign depicting Russian President Vladimir Putin as World War II German dictator
Adolf Hitler with text reading 'Putler you're finished' during a demonstration in Kiev





Residents attend a rally in Kiev's Independence Square while tensions continue to rise in the country


The world's leaders continue to express 'grave concern' about the developing situation - hailed as the most 'serious crisis' since the Cold War'.
The United States brandished the threat of economic sanctions on Russia on Sunday, with Secretary of State John Kerry calling Moscow's moves on Ukraine an 'incredible act of aggression.'

Kerry was scathing in his condemnation and said the United States has 'all options on the table' including a military response. The White House said Obama would speak to Allies today their response.
Protests continue in Ukraine, Poland and Russia today - with a demonstration entitled 'Ukraine and Crimea are together' taking place in Independence Square, Kiev this afternoon.

Russian police arrested more than 300 of the estimated 1,500 people who took part in a protest against President Vladimir Putin in Moscow. Some 20,000 Putin supporters gathered on the streets of the capital to back use of force in Ukraine.

Developments in the Ukraine have alarmed the world's diplomatic leaders, prompting U.S. President Barack Obama to call the Kremlin and urge Putin to back down.




Police detain a demonstrator during a protest against sending Russian troops to Crimea in St Petersburg, Russia




People hold banners as they march in a pro-government demonstration in Moscow, Russia




More demonstrators with flags at the protest in Moscow today




People mourn at a make-shift memorial for those killed in recent violence at Independence Square in Kiev





Standing firm against Russia: Ukraine's Acting President Oleksander Turchinov (left),
Prime Minister Arseny Yatseniuk (right) and Defense Minister Ihor Tenyukh pictured addressing journalists in Kiev on Saturday





On the move: A huge convoy of Russian soldiers was seen heading towards Crimea's regional capital




Pro-Russian militants station themselves behind a row of shields near a local
government building and a statue of Lenin on Sunday in Simferopol, Ukraine





Pro-Russian militants in Crimea, where ethnic Russians make up about 60 per cent of the population



HOW THE WEST CAN ONLY WATCH RUSSIA FLEX ITS MILITARY MIGHT

Quote:
With Western powers increasingly concluding Ukraine has lost Crimea to Russia, the U.S. and its allies face few viable options and serious questions over future relations.

In ignoring President Barack Obama's Friday warning to keep out of Ukraine, Russia looks to be precipitating the greatest crisis in Russia-Western relations since at least the fall of the Berlin Wall.

How events play out in the next few days could help shape the geopolitical map for years to come.

Any Western direct military action would risk a war between nuclear superpowers. Ukraine's relatively small and underequipped forces could take action but would risk inciting a much wider Russian invasion that could overrun the country.

Obama in particular faces some domestic calls to support Ukraine, although appetite for military involvement appears almost entirely absent. On Saturday, the Pentagon said there had been no change to its military deployments.

‘For the West, it's a very difficult position,’ said Nikolas Gvosdev, professor of national security at the US Naval War College. ‘Obama effectively set down the US red lines,’ he said. 'Putin has gone right through them.’



Foreign Secretary William Hague met with Ukraine's interim leaders as the crisis in the former Soviet country escalates ever closer to war.
Hague said before his departure that he was extremely concerned by the escalation. He said Ukrainian officials have told him by telephone that they won't respond to Russian provocations and he advised them to 'continue with that course.'

He previously said the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine had been ‘violated’ and called for Moscow to speak directly to the nation's new leaders.

Britain has pulled out of preparatory talks due to be held in the coming days for the G8 summit in Sochi over Russia's decision to take military action in Ukraine.

British Prime Minister David Cameron has also said it would be wrong for British ministers to attend the Paralympics in Sochi because of the serious situation in Ukraine.

Quote:
'Because of the serious situation in Ukraine, William Hague and I believe it would be wrong for UK Ministers to attend the Sochi Paralympics,' Cameron said on Twitter.



Prince Edward, patron of the British Paralympic Association, has also cancelled his planned trip to Russia.

Poland's Prime Minister Donald Tusk said it was essential to prevent Russia's seizure of Crimea expanding into a wider regional conflict.

'We should be able to stop Russia in its aggressive moves precisely in order to avoid a conflict,'
Tusk told reporters on Sunday after an extraordinary meeting with party leaders.

But he said doing nothing was also not an option.

'History shows - although I don't want to use too many historical comparisons - that those who appease all the time in order to preserve peace usually only buy a little bit of time.'


Poland shares a border with Ukraine and large parts of the western part of the country were Polish before World War Two.





Defiant: Putin said that Russia retains the right to protect its interests in Ukraine





Police detain a protester demonstrating against the Russian military's actions in Crimea and developments
in Russian-Ukrainian relations during an unsanctioned rally in St.Petersburg, Russia on Sunday






Anger: Saint-Petersburg citizens protested against Russian aggression in Crimea




Crackdown: One of the protestors is carried away by police officers


U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry on Sunday condemned Russia's ‘incredible act of aggression’ in Ukraine and threatened ‘very serious repercussions’ from the United States and other countries including sanctions to isolate Russia economically.

‘You just don't in the 21st century behave in 19th century fashion by invading another country on a completely trumped up pre-text,’

Kerry told the CBS programme Face the Nation.

Kerry, however, added that Russia still has ‘a right set of choices’ that can be made to defuse the crisis.
Kerry is considering a stop in Kiev, Ukraine's capital, during his trip this coming week to Paris and Rome for discussions on Lebanon and Syria, reports suggested on Sunday.




People applaud as the European Union flag held by a protester arrives
at the Independence square during a rally in Kiev on Sunday






A United Nations Security Council meeting on Saturday,
which was convened in light of the crisis in Ukraine






An anti-Yanukovych protester sets a European Union flag on top of a tent
in Kiev's Independence Square, the epicenter of the country's current unrest





Hotline: Obama had a 90 minute phone call with Putin to discuss the situation this morning




Local TV films Russian plates on military convoy in Crimea:




Labour leader Ed Miliband said ‘all economic and diplomatic’ options should be looked at but not military force.
Asked about the possibility of UN troops being deployed, he told Radio 5 Live’s Pienaar’s Politics: ‘I don’t think anyone’s talking about that and I don’t think they should be.’
Mr Miliband said a ‘clear and uncompromising message’ must be sent to Moscow.
‘There isn’t a simple answer to this situation but I think that swiftness of response is very important by the international community, showing how we regard Russia’s actions is very, very important and looking at all economic and diplomatic measures to convey a sense of what the international community thinks about what is happening in Ukraine and its wish to see the protection of the sovereignty of Ukraine.’


Former Liberal Democrat leader and special forces veteran Paddy Ashdown warned tense times were ahead.

‘We are one pace away from catastrophe at the moment - it would require one foolish act, a trigger happy Russian soldier, a Ukrainian guard who acts aggressively at one of these institutions taken over by Russian supporters, a foolish act now could tip us over the edge,’
he told the Sky News Murnaghan programme.





A group of armed unidentified gunmen cut electric power to the General
Headquarters of the Ukrainian Naval forces in Sevastopol on Sunday





Unidentified masked individuals hold a Russian flag as they block Trade Union building in Simferopol on Saturday

‘The good news is it is still possible Russia’s aims are limited - I think increasingly unlikely but still possible. They have legitimate rights under international treaty to the port of Sevastopol for the Black Sea Fleet. They may be posturing, over-reacting or at least using muscle to preserve that right.
‘We still have to test out what are Russia’s aims. If the evidence before us is to be believed then it looks to me they are going further than limited aims, they have already made a power grab in Crimea and are now preparing to make another.
‘The one thing which is absolutely essential now is that the West speaks with a single voice... only in the face of that can we exercise diplomatic leverage.
‘Putin has used force, he knows that’s going further than any of us are prepared to go, he is calling our bluff. The only response is diplomacy.’

Lord Ashdown said German chancellor Angela Merkel should go to Moscow for talks, saying she would be ‘the most important international visitor’.

‘Only if you take those high level moves could we restrain Russia from an act which would be clearly illegal and create a circumstance which we could begin to pull back from this,’ he said.
‘Absent that, the smallest tremor, the smallest act now could take us over the edge.
‘President Putin has taken the view if he uses the military card we will not out trump him. And he’s right, we will not respond in the military fashion... I’m not privy to all the information here but one has to presume that.
‘The only option left is the diplomatic option.’





Masked individuals outside Trade Union building on Sunday, pictured as tension over the crisis mounts considerably


Pro-Russian protesters storm administration building in Ukraine







UKRAINE'S FURY OVER 'RUSSIAN MILITARY INTERVENTION' WHICH THREATENS NEW REGIME

Quote:
The developments in the Crimea in recent days are the latest stage of the tug-of-war over Ukraine's future.
Since president Viktor Yanukovych was forced out of Kiev last week an interim leader has taken over and formed a new government after weeks of bloody protests.
But the new regime has already run into difficulty due to the unrest in Crimea, where most people are ethnically Russian.

After the armed men stormed the parliament, a new pro-Russian prime minister for the Crimean region was elected.
Sergei Aksenov has called on Russian president Vladimir Putin for help keeping the peace.
The development marks a sharp divide between the Crimean region and the rest of Ukraine.

Meanwhile, troops thought to be under Russian control have seized airports and border points.

Some fear it could be the beginnings of an attempt to annex the region, which was once part of the Soviet Union.

The new Ukrainian government has characterised the moves as an 'armed invasion' which violates international agreements.

Speaking on the same programme, former Conservative foreign secretary Sir Malcolm Rifkind said: ‘There is no doubt this is probably the most serious crisis since the end of the Cold War. Here we have in our own European back country, military troops of Russia going across the international border into another country.
‘That is desperately serious, that has not happened for a very many years - even at the height of the Bosnian conflict, Milosevic was terribly involved in that, never sent his own troops into Bosnia to directly interfere.
‘This needs to be a defining moment and Putin needs to understand this... in the West’s relationship with Russia. This is of particular importance to Ukrainians but there are very serious implications for the whole of Europe.
‘We’re not going to go to war with Russia, we are not going to send our troops into this, that must be right. But diplomacy sounds as if it just means talking and talking with a man like Putin is no doubt desirable, it has to happen, but by itself it will not carry much weight.
‘He is looking to see whether he can get away cost free with this kind of behaviour. So I think it will have to be made clear unless he takes the right action in the next couple of days... that what he is risking is Russia’s whole relationship with the West that has built up since 1990.
‘There are a whole range of ways, beyond just diplomacy, beyond just talking, whereby Russia can be made to realise if it takes this extraordinarily dangerous step of believing it can send its troops into another European country because it is displeased with what is happening, there is a very serious price to pay.’

Shootout takes place near Crimean government building




DRAMATIC CCTV EMERGES OF HEAVILY-ARMED MEN STORMING CRIMEAN PARLIAMENT BUILDING

The images show the dramatic moment armed men stormed a Ukrainian government building amid soaring tensions in the country's Crimea region.

Masked soldiers, said to be under Russian instruction, gather outside the door before forcing their way in to the regional parliament building in the Crimean city of Simferopol.



Stormed: The armed men gather outside the regional parliament building in Simferopol before battering down the door

Smoke canisters can be seen exploding inside the building as the men, holding silenced machine guns, usher out security personal in what appears to be an early-morning raid.
The footage, dated from Thursday, emerges today after armed men seized airports and set up road blocks around the vital city amid soaring tensions between the new Ukrainian authorities and Russia.
'These are separate groups ... [are] commanded by the Kremlin,' Mr Parubiy, secretary of the National Security and Defence Council, told a news briefing in Kiev.




Smoke attack: The armed men threw canisters in before entering the parliament




Charge in: The armed men burst into the building in the footage, which emerged today



The moment armed men storm Crimea government building:




Russian Military Attack Helicopters over the Crimea Ukraine 28th February 2014:




BREAKING! Russian Navy on the Move in Ukraine




Local TV films Russian plates on military convoy in Crimea:




Russian soldiers in Balaklava city on the Crimean Peninsula 1st March 2014




MORE:
END


NB:
This escalating dangerous situation could affect many countries, especially all those in the European Union.
Russia supplies oil to the EU, through pipelines that cross Crimea.

+ Both Russia & Crimea supply a lot of wheat to many countries in the world.
Food and oil prices have already started increasing
Prices on the World Stock Market are dropping fast......
.
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Default re: Russia Warns US "We can Reduce You to Radioactive Ash


WARNING!

Remember my words of wisdom...


If any of you have any gold or silver, SELL it
NOW, ( prices have dropped in the last 24hrs,) then re-sell in a few days, BEFORE the world stock market stops panicking,,, because the situation in Crimea (Ukraine), is worsening!

PS. Buy Bread, Pasta etc & similar products..- lots of. Wheat prices are soaring & will continue to do so, even IF things calm down.

Fill your vehicles with fuel. Oil Prices are increasing too.

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Update re: Russia Warns US "We can Reduce You to Radioactive Ash

'Russians' Open Fire in Crimea as they Take Control of a Naval Base in Fresh Escalation in face of Western Warnings of Consequences and Obama Backing for new Ukraine Government

  • Ukrainian defence official claims shots have been fired
  • British PM David Cameron says preparations for G8 are on hold
  • Cameron and German Chancellor restate view that vote would be illegal
  • Ukraine was top of the agenda for Mr Cameron and Mrs Merkel
  • It follows phone call between Vladimir Putin and Mr Cameron
By Daily Mail UK, 10 March 2014


Armed men fired in the air as they moved into a Ukrainian naval post in Crimea today, a Ukrainian defence official in the region was quoted as saying by local media.
Ukraine's Channel 5 television quoted Vladislav Seleznyov as saying the shooting, a rare occurrence since Russian forces took over the Black Sea peninsula a week ago, took place in mid-afternoon at a motor pool base near Bakhchisaray.
On his Facebook page, Seleznyov said about 10 'unidentified armed men' in two minibuses drove into the compound and demanded Ukrainian personnel there give them 10 trucks.





An armed man, believed to be a Russian serviceman, stands inside the base A2904 after the
Ukrainian command lost control over it in the Crimean town of Bakhchisaray





An armed sailor of the Ukrainian warship Ternipol stands on board as the ship lays anchored in Sevastopol, Ukraine




The Ukrainian warship Ternipol lays anchored in Sevastopol, Ukraine. Russian warships are standing nearby to prevent the
Ternipol and the larger Slavutych from departing as a blockade by Russian-led forces of Ukrainian military facilities and assets continues on Crimea



Earlier, Interfax Ukraine news agency quoted an unnamed Ukrainian official describing the men as Russian troops and saying that none of the Ukrainians at the site was injured in the shooting.
Moscow, which has a major naval base at Sevastopol in Crimea, has denied that uniformed units, wearing no insignia, which have taken control of the region are from its military forces - a denial ridiculed in Kiev and by Western governments.
Crimean leaders who took power after Ukraine's pro-Moscow president was overthrown in Kiev have called a referendum for Sunday to unite the region with Russia.

Officials could not immediately be contacted and it was unclear whether the confrontation at Bakhchisaray had ended.
Russia could be excluded from a renewed G7 group of international leaders as part of the response to the crisis in Ukraine if Moscow does not co-operate in de-escalation,
British Prime Minister David Cameron said today that preparations for a G8 meeting in Russia have been placed on hold since tensions rose following a revolution in Kiev and Russian occupation of Crimea in recent days and weeks.
Responding to the Prime Minister's statement to the Commons on last week's emergency European Council, Labour leader Ed Miliband asked if Mr Cameron backed a renewed G7 grouping.




Members of a pro-Russian self defence unit stand in a formation as they take an oath to Crimea government in Simferopol




An armed man (left), believed to be a Russian serviceman, walks in front of members of a pro-Russian
self defence unit before they take an oath to Crimea government in Simferopol






Ukrainian soldiers bide their time inside the Belbek military airbase in Lubimovka, Ukraine






Around 300 Ukrainian soldiers are garrisoned at the Belbek base and
so far have refused demands by pro-Russian soldiers to surrender



Mr Cameron said:
Quote:
'You asked whether it would be right to resuscitate the G7 rather than go ahead with a G8 - I think if we don't make progress on a contact group, if Russia takes further steps, then clearly one of the measures we could bring forward relatively quickly would be a different approach of going back to a G7 rather than a G8.
'But let's hope that isn't necessary.
'

In his statement, Mr Cameron outlined the European Council's agreement last week on immediate steps in response to current events, work on further measures if Russia and Ukraine do not open talks, and on 'far reaching consequences' if Russia takes more steps to destabilise Ukraine.





Prime Minister David Cameron reads a statement in the House of Commons regarding the crisis in Ukraine





German Chancellor Angela Merkel (left) and British Prime Minister David Cameron (second right)
have renewed their warning to Russian President Vladimir Putin





The Prime Minister and German Chancellor restated their view that a referendum
scheduled for March 16 in the southern Ukrainian peninsula would be illegal




KHODORKOVSKY: RUSSIA IS RUINING UKRAINE FRIENDSHIP





Mikhail Khodorkovsky, the businessman who was once Russia's most famous prisoner, said his
country is ruining its longstanding friendship with Ukraine by its aggressive and pro-separatist actions in Crimea.


'The question of Crimea's fate is very painful both for Ukrainians and for Russians. It's not just a simple territorial dispute for some extra square kilometers' Khodorkovsky told a packed hall at Kiev Polytechnic University.

'For Russians, it's a sacred place, an important element in our historical memory and the most painful wound since the Soviet collapse,' Khodorkovsky said. Nevertheless, he said, the symbolism of Crimea for Russians cannot justify 'such a blatant incursion into the affairs of a historically friendly state.'

He called for Crimea to remain part of Ukraine, but with broader regional powers and the protection of the rights of Russian speakers there.

Khodorkovsky, once Russia's wealthiest man, was pardoned last December by Putin. Many believe he was convicted of tax violations and other crimes and sent to prison on trumped-up charges.

It comes after Mr Cameron and Angela Merkel warned Russia of 'further consequences' if Moscow tries to legitimise any attempt by Crimea to break away from Ukraine.
The Prime Minister and German Chancellor restated their view that a referendum scheduled for March 16 in the southern Ukrainian peninsula would be illegal.
Ukraine was top of the agenda for discussions between Mr Cameron and Mrs Merkel at a working dinner last night during the PM's two-day visit to Germany.


A Downing Street spokesman said:
Quote:

'They both agreed that the priority is to de-escalate the situation and to get Russia to engage in a contact group as swiftly as possible.
'They reiterated their view that the proposed referendum in Crimea would be illegal and that any attempt by Russia to legitimise the result would result in further consequences.
'They also agreed that we must keep working to support the Ukraine government, including identifying how the international community can help to stabilise the economic situation.'
Russian President Vladimir Putin assured Mr Cameron in a phone call yesterday that Russia wants to find a peaceful resolution to the Crimea crisis, which was sparked when armed troops wearing uniforms with no identifying insignia seized key military and administrative locations in the predominantly Russian-speaking peninsula at the end of last month.
Number 10 said Mr Putin insisted he 'did want to find a diplomatic solution' and was ready to consider the setting up of a contact group to facilitate dialogue with the new government established in the Ukrainian capital, Kiev, after the ousting of president Viktor Yanukovych.





Cameron and Obama have held lengthy phone calls with Russian President Vladimir Putin in the past week


The Russian president said he would discuss the idea - a key demand of the U.S. and Europe alongside the withdrawal of armed forces that have taken control of the province - with his foreign minister, Sergey Lavrov, today.
Moscow, which does not recognise the interim government in Kiev, has so far ignored the threat of American and European sanctions designed to force it to pull back from Crimea.
The Duma - the lower house of the Russian Parliament - has endorsed a decision by Crimea's parliament to become a part of the Russian Federation subject to approval in next weekend's referendum.





Tense: Armed men, believed to be Russian servicemen, stand guard at the Ukrainian
military base in the village of Perevalnoye near the Crimean city of Simferopol



A team of international observers from the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe has consistently been refused entry to Crimea.
The European Union has suspended talks with Moscow on visa liberalisation and threatened asset bans and travel freezes on Russian officials if there is no rapid progress to a diplomatic solution.
Washington, less constrained by fears of the economic consequences on its own economy, has taken a harder line - moving to punish Russian figures suspected of involvement.

Discussions between Mr Cameron and Mrs Merkel came after they opened a digital trade fair in the city of Hanover.
Last night's dinner also included discussions on priorities for the next European Commission and moves to strengthen the EU's relations with countries including the USA and China, said Number 10.
The two leaders agreed to work together to generate more momentum on the EU-US trade talks with the aim of making substantive progress this year, added the Downing Street spokesman.

Mr Cameron will use an oral statement to the House of Commons this afternoon to update MPs on his discussions on the Ukraine crisis with fellow EU leaders at an emergency European Council meeting last week.
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Default re: Russia Warns US "We can Reduce You to Radioactive Ash

'We can Reduce you to Radioactive Ash': Russian State TV issues Stark Warning to the US as Ukraine Mobilizes 20,000 Troops and Moves Closer to All-Out War





Tens of thousands of Ukrainian soldiers are now on high alert, as well as another 20,000 battle-ready reservists, prepared to fight should their government fail to find a solution to the standoff with Russia over the future of the Black Sea peninsular. And yesterday, the head of its state news agency, Dmitry Kiselyov, issued a thinly-veiled threat to America on live TV, urging the superpower to stay out of the crisis or risk facing the full force of Russia's military muscle.



Ukraine Mobilises its Army as Kremlin ups the Ante with Warning to America of War

  • Ukraine deploys 20,000 national guard troops with another 20,000 reserves
  • Russia, meanwhile, has an army of 700,000 battle-ready frontline soldiers
  • Yesterday, Russian state news agency chief warns US to stay out of crisis
  • Dmitry Kiselyov tells TV viewers Russia could turn US to 'radioactive ash'
  • Ukraine foreign minister voes to 'defend our homeland' if Russia advances
  • Europe impose sanctions on 21 Russians and Ukrainians and US targets 11
  • Obama: '[Land grab] will isolate Russia and diminish its place in the world'
  • Hague vows to lead Europe's bid to reduce its reliance on Russian energy
  • Ukraine recalls ambassador to Russia to discuss international effects
By Daily Mail UK, 17 March 2014


The Crimean crisis moved a step closer to all-out war today as Ukraine mobilised its armed forces and a firebrand Kremlin mouthpiece warned America to stay out of its business, declaring: 'We could turn you to radioactive ash.'
In a sign of rising tensions following yesterday's referendum that called for Crimea's annexation to Russia, the Ukrainian parliament approved the deployment of its armies as it vowed to 'defend our homeland' from any land grab.
More than 40,000 battle-ready Ukrainian soldiers are now on high alert, prepared to fight should their government fail to find a solution to the standoff with Russia over the future of the Black Sea peninsular.

Scroll down for Videos




On guard: Members of a military special unit stand guard in front of a Ukrainian parliament
building in Kiev today as Ukraine's parliament authorised their mobilisation




Tall order: With a national guard of 20,000 troops coupled with 20,000 battle-ready reservists, the Ukrainian Armed Forces
are dwarfed by a Russian army that includes more than 700,000 active frontline personel and many more in reserve




Tense moments: A Ukrainian self defense volunteer group line up in Kiev ready to fight in case a solution to the crisis is not found


But with a pool of just 160,000 active frontline personel, the Ukrainian armed forces are dwarfed by a Russian army that includes more than 700,000 men and women and many more in reserve.

And yesterday, Moscow appeared to up the ante further when the head of its state news agency, Dmitry Kiselyov, issued a thinly-veiled threat to America on live TV, urging the superpower to stay out of the crisis or risk facing the full force of Russia's military muscle.





'We can turn you to ash': Speaking against a backdrop of a nuclear mushroom cloud, Russian state news agency chief, Dmitry Kiselyov,
issued a thinly-veiled threat to America on live TV, urging it to stay out of the crisis or risk facing the full force of Russia's military muscle









Close ties: Russian television journalist Dmitry Kiselyov (Top) was handpicked by
Russian President Vladimir Putin last year to head a new state news agency





Mystery troops: Armed soldiers without identifying insignia keep guard outside of a Ukrainian military
base in the town of Perevevalne near the Crimean city of Simferopol. They are believed to be Russian






Tight control: Russia is bolstering its own presence in the region too


Speaking against a backdrop of a nuclear mushroom cloud, Kiselyov - who was handpicked personally by president Putin - told viewers of his popular show: 'Russia is the only country in the world that is realistically capable of turning the United States into radioactive ash.'
He made the incendiary remarks after US president Barack Obama began, alongside Europe, to impose sanctions on Russia and vowed to get tougher if it follows through with its planned annexation of Crimea.





Russian might: Armed men, believed to be Russians, march at their camp
near the Ukrainian military base in Perevalnoye outside Simferopol






Tensions rising: With a national guard of 20,000 troops coupled with 20,000 battle-ready reservists, the Ukrainian armed forces are
dwarfed by a Russian army that includes more than 700,000 active frontline personel (pictured) and many more in reserve






Russian troops: Meanwhile, Crimea's parliament today declared the region an independent state, after its
residents voted overwhelmingly to break off from Ukraine and seek to join Russia (pictured: A Russian soldier in Crimea)




More troops: Russia is expected to face strong sanctions today from the European Union & U.S. over backing the Crimean referendum





Business as usual: Russian President Vladimir Putin, left, presents flowers to biathlon paralympic
champion Mikhalina Lysova during an awards ceremony in Sochi on Monday some 400 miles away






Time for sanctions: During a White House press briefing, Obama warned that continued Russian
military intervention in Ukraine would only increase Russia's isolation and exact a greater toll on its economy



But today a Russian takeover of Crimea seemed as likely as ever as the region's parliament declared itself an independent state, after a regional referendum saw 96.6 per cent of its residents vote to break off from Ukraine and join Russia.

The referendum, however, is not recognised by the West, and the United States and the European Union are preparing sanctions against Russia, whose troops have been occupying Crimea for several weeks.

The White House has dismissed the succession vote in Crimea as an illegal power grab by Russia, saying it violated both the Ukrainian constitution and international law, and urged president Putin not to follow through with threats to annex the peninsular.


Quote:
BATTLE READY: HOW RUSSIA AND UKRAINE'S FORCES MEASURE UP

Russia

Population: 145,500,482

Active frontline personel: 766,000

Active reserve personel: 2,485,000

Tanks: 15,500

Armoured fighting vehicles: 27,607

Total aircraft: 3,082

Naval vessels: 352

Ukraine

Population: 44,573, 205

Active frontline personel: 160,000

Active reserve personel: 1,000,000

Tanks: 4,112

Armoured fighting vehicles:6,431

Total aircraft: 400

Naval vessels: 25
And today a senior US diplomat revealed there is 'concrete evidence' that some ballots arrived 'pre-marked' in the referendum adding that other voting anomalies were also detected.


As a shot across Russia's bows, Obama today imposed sanctions on 11 Russians and Ukrainians blamed for Russia's military incursion into Crimea, including two top aides to Russian President Putin, banning travel to his country and freezing any assets held within its borders.

Among those sanctioned were ousted Ukraine President Viktor Yanukovich and Putin aides Vladislov Surkov and Sergei Glazyev.

During a White House press briefing, Obama warned that continued Russian military intervention in Ukraine would only increase Russia's isolation and exact a greater toll on its economy.

'If Russia continues to interfere in Ukraine, we stand ready to impose further sanctions,' he said.

Amid fears that Russia might move into eastern Ukraine, Obama said further provocations will achieve nothing except to 'further isolate Russia and diminish its place in the world.'

Senior administration officials who briefed reporters on the penalties said they were the most comprehensive sanctions applied to Russia since the end of the Cold War.

The European Union took similar steps, targeting 21 people in Russia and Crimea while leaving open the possibility of adding harsher economic measures when EU leaders meet later this week.

At a briefing today, UK Foreign Secretary William Hague revealed Britain would join Europe in reducing its dependence on Russian energy which currently supplies 30 per cent of the continent's gas.

'We have started today discussing the longer term, the need to reduce European dependence on Russian energy over many years to come,' he said. 'It is some of these sorts of things that will be the biggest costs in the long term to Russia if we make no diplomatic progress over the coming weeks.'

As Ukraine recalled its ambassador to Russia for consultations on the international ramifications of the situation in its Crimea region, Ukrainian foreign minister Andrii Deshchytsya also came out fighting today, promising that his government was 'prepared to defend our homeland'.
He told BBC Radio 4's The World At One programme: 'We are very much concerned with the deployment of Russian troops on the eastern border of Ukraine and the number of provocations made by Russians in eastern regions of Ukraine.

'We are prepared to defend our homeland if Russia will decide to move further into the eastern parts of Ukraine.'

Mr Deshchytsya said the sanctions agreed today were a 'step forward in mobilising the international community'.

'But I think we also need to deepen our relations with the European Union,' he said.
Parts of the Crimea is now swarming with well-armed soldiers without identifying insignia but believed to have been sent across the border by Russia.




No insignia: Parts of the Crimea is now swarming with well-armed soldiers without
identifying insignia but believed to have been sent across the border by Russia






In control: Russian forces effectively took control of Crimea late last month after Russia-friendly
President Viktor Yanukovych fled the country in the wake of months of protests





Well-armed: Russia's army is more than four times the size of that of Ukraine


Crimean lawmakers have asked the United Nations and other nations to recognize it.
A delegation of Crimean lawmakers is set to travel to Moscow Monday for negotiations on how to proceed further. Russian lawmakers have suggested that formally annexing Crimea is almost certain.

The Kremlin clearly put the issue on a fast track. Both houses of parliament were set to gather for a joint meeting in the Kremlin on Tuesday to hear President Vladimir Putin's address on the subject.

In Kiev, the national parliament approved acting President Oleksandr Turchynov's call for a military mobilization that would include 20,000 volunteers with previous military experience, and reservists.
Ukraine recently formed a national guard also about 20,000-strong.





Defiant: A man fixes the Crimean flag near groups of armed soldiers without identifying insignia who
are keeping guard outside a Ukrainian military base in the town of Perevevalne



Turchynov said the order was necessary "considering the continuing aggression in ... Crimea, which Russia is trying to disguise with a large farce called `referendum,' which will never be accepted by Crimea or the whole civilized world," he was quoted as saying by the Intefax news agency.

Russia is expected to face strong sanctions from the U.S. and Europe over backing the Crimean referendum, which could also encourage rising pro-Russian sentiment in Ukraine's east and lead to further divisions in this nation of 46 million. Residents in western Ukraine and the capital, Kiev, are strongly pro-West and Ukrainian nationalist.

Russian forces effectively took control of Crimea late last month after Russia-friendly President Viktor Yanukovych fled the country in the wake of months of protests.


'OUR SANCTIONS SEND A STATEMENT':
HAGUE DEFENDS VISA BANS AND ASSETS FREEZES OF RUSSIANS BLAMED FOR CRIMEA CONFLICT

Quote:



Tough talk: The Foreign Secretary said Russian 'acts of provocation' had done nothing to ease tensions in the region as he restated the EU's refusal to accept the outcome of the referendum on Crimea's future

Sanctions against Russia will send a 'strong statement' about the European Union's resolve to tackle the Ukraine crisis, William Hague said today.
The Foreign Secretary said Russian 'acts of provocation' had done nothing to ease tensions in the region as he restated the EU's refusal to accept the outcome of the referendum on Crimea's future.
Mr Hague and European counterparts were meeting to discuss the use of asset bans and travel freezes against named individuals in Russia, with the Foreign Secretary saying he was 'confident' that agreement on the list of targets would be reached.
Arriving at the meeting in Brussels, he said: 'They will be a very important statement of what European countries believe about this and the unacceptability of trying to settle disputes in Europe in the 21st century by armed force and the threat of annexation rather than by negotiation and the use of international law.
'It will be a very strong statement about that, and quite important measures for the individuals concerned as well.'
In a warning to Moscow that even tougher sanctions could follow, he said: 'The important thing is that we are also prepared to move to further measures and there will be long-term costs and consequences for Russia if they continue to approach things in this way.'
He called on Moscow to enter into talks with the new government in Kiev, but said Russia had so far done nothing to 'de-escalate' the crisis.

'What we look to Russia to do is to enter into a diplomatic process and framework that brings the Russian leaders into direct contact and negotiation with Ukrainian leaders,' he said.
'That is what we have been pressing for over the last two weeks. It can be provided through an international contact or co-ordination group, supported by many other countries. We are all ready to do that.
'Of course, they need to take their own steps to de-escalate this situation. Russia's actions, including proceeding with the referendum yesterday, other acts of provocation, the presence on the border of large numbers of Russian troops - they have not done anything to de-escalate so far.
'

VIDEOS:

Kremlin Mouthpiece: Russia can Reduce US to Radioactive Ash:




WAR IS CLOSE:




Pro-Russia Mob Clash with Riot Police in Donetsk, Ukraine




More, Click Here:...
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Old 26-03-14, 17:36   #6
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Default U.S. Gives Russia Free Military Equipment Used By Army, Marines

Behind closed doors the U.S. government is giving Russia free military equipment—also used to train American troops—even after President Obama announced punitive sanctions against Moscow and, more importantly, a suspension in military engagement over the invasion and occupation of Ukraine.

The secret operation was exposed this week by members of Congress that discovered it in the process of reviewing the Fiscal Year 2014 budget and the proposed Fiscal Year 2015 budget request. It turns out that the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) has been providing the Russian Federation with the Multiple Integrated Laser Engagement System (MILES), the federal legislators say. The U.S. military uses MILES for tactical force-on-force training because it has a system of lasers and dummy ammunition to simulate ground combat.

It’s a crucial, military-grade technology that’s similar to a “laser tag” available in some commercial markets, according to one of the outraged lawmakers (Oklahoma Republican Jim Bridenstine) that helped uncover the scandal. Bridenstine, a member of the House Armed Services Committee, has joined forces with Ohio Republican Mike Turner, Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Tactical Air and Land Forces, to demand an end to the program. Along with about a dozen other House colleagues they penned a letter to Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz, who oversees the agency carrying out the “irresponsible military equipment transfers” to Russia.

The Obama administration’s planned supply to the Russian Federation is a grave mistake given the recent invasion of Ukraine launched by Russian Federation President Vladimir Putin, the legislators point out. “It is difficult to imagine a worse time to provide military-grade technology employed by the U.S. Marine Corps, Army, and Special Operations Forces to Russia than when it has illegally invaded Ukraine and is violating the intermediate-range Nuclear Forces (INF) treaty,” the letter to Moniz says. “To make matters worse, it is our understanding from the budget documents that the Department has been, and continues to propose, providing this technology to Russia free-of-charge.”

This is preposterous and borders on criminal if you really think about it. As if we need reminding, Congressman Turner recants Putin’s “brazen disregard for the sovereignty and stability of Eastern Europe” as well as his disregard for international law. “Despite this overwhelming evidence that Putin is not our ally, it is astonishing that the Obama Administration would still provide superior, U.S. military technology to an aggressive and advancing Russia,” Turner said. “The United States must seriously redirect its approach and immediately terminate all military aid to Russia.”

President Obama has already proven to be an international joke for his response to the worsening crisis in Ukraine. Even the mainstream media in this country has blasted the commander-in-chief’s foreign policy as based on fantasy. One famously liberal magazine published a satirical article saying that the Obama administration froze Putin’s Netflix account as a “major ramping up of sanctions.” In a piece published a few days ago, a former veteran congressman wrote this: “The embarrassment of U.S. impotence in dealing with Russian aggression in the Ukraine is only the beginning of what will likely be a series of foreign policy disasters.”


http://www.judicialwatch.org/blog/2014/03/u-s-gives-russia-free-military-equipment-used-by-army-marines/
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Old 13-04-14, 19:45   #7
 
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Update re: Ukraine-NATO Ups Military Presence+EU/US Plan More Action

UN Security Council to meet Sunday on Ukraine

By AP, 13 April 2014


UNITED NATIONS (AP)

The U.N. Security Council has called an emergency meeting at Russia's request to discuss the growing crisis in Ukraine.

Russia's U.N. mission sent a text message to reporters saying a closed meeting of the Security Council would begin at 8 p.m. Sunday (0000 GMT). The Russian mission said it had requested the meeting.

The President of the Security Council confirmed in an email that members have been invited to attend "informal consultations" on Ukraine Sunday evening.

The meeting comes as the new Ukrainian government declared it would deploy armed forces to quash an increasingly bold pro-Russian insurgency in eastern Ukraine.

Ukrainian special forces exchanged gunfire with a pro-Russia militia in an eastern city Sunday morning, with at least one security officer killed and five others wounded.
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Old 17-04-14, 01:47   #8
 
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Update re: Ukraine-NATO Ups Military Presence+EU/US Plan More Action

NATO ups Military Presence Amid Russian threat

By AP 17 April 2014


BRUSSELS (AP)

NATO is strengthening its military footprint along its eastern border immediately in response to Russia's aggression in Ukraine, the alliance's chief said Wednesday.

Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said NATO's air policing aircraft will fly more sorties over the Baltic region west of Ukraine, far from the tensions in the eastern part of the country. He said allied warships will also deploy to the Baltic Sea, the eastern Mediterranean and elsewhere if needed.

NATO's supreme commander in Europe told reporters that ground forces could also be involved at some point, but gave no details.




NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen addresses the media after an NATO Ambassadors Council at NATO headquarters in Brussels, Wednesday, April 16, 2014.

NATO says it's reinforcing its military presence on eastern border on sea, land and in the air. (AP Photo/Yves Logghe)


NATO members Poland and the Baltic countries Lithuania, Estonia and Latvia have been wary following Russia's annexation of the Ukrainian Crimean Peninsula, demanding a more robust military posture to counter neighboring Russia.
Rasmussen said;
Quote:

'the new NATO deployments are about "deterrence and de-escalation
"
,,,in the face of Russia's aggressive behaviour in Ukraine, which is not a member of the 28-nation alliance'.

The move was supported by the US White House.


Quote:

"We fully endorse the actions the alliance has taken to reassure NATO members and to bolster NATO's presence in the Baltic nations," White House spokesman Jay Carney said.
NATO estimates Russia has amassed some 40,000 troops on Ukraine's eastern border and could invade if it wished.

Fogh Rasmussen again urged Russia to pull those troops back.


The NATO chief did not mention naval deployments to the Black Sea — which Russia would likely see as a direct aggression even though NATO members Bulgaria, Romania and Turkey also border the sea.
But he insisted that "more will follow if needed."


Air Force Gen. Philip Breedlove said multiple nations have approached him with offers of ground forces that will be included in a plan of operations he will give to NATO later Wednesday or Thursday.
Breedlove said the package of new military moves is designed to remain in place through Dec. 31.

Quote:
"These measures are not a threat to Russia but they are designed to send a clear message that NATO will protect every ally and is ready to defend against any threat to our fundamental security," Breedlove said.
He said he tried — but failed — to reach the Russian chief of general staff, Gen. Valery Gerasimov, to make that point
.
NATO has already suspended most cooperation and talks with Russia.
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Old 17-04-14, 17:05   #9
 
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Update re: Ukraine-NATO Ups Military Presence+EU/US Plan More Action



Russia: Deal Reached on Calming Ukraine Tensions

By AP, 17 April 2014

GENEVA (AP) — Russia's foreign minister says top diplomats have agreed to take immediate steps toward calming tensions in Ukraine.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov says the four parties gathered Thursday in Geneva — the U.S., European Union, Ukraine and Russia — will work to establish a broad national dialogue to ensure that people's rights are protected.
He said that amnesty will be given to pro-Russian protesters who participated in an uprising against the government in Kiev, except those found guilty of capital crimes.





U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, left, shakes hands with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov for a bilateral meeting to discuss the ongoing situation in Ukraine as diplomats from the U.S., Ukraine, Russia and the European Union gather for discussions in Geneva Thursday, April 17, 2014.

(AP Photo/Jim Bourg, Pool)


Ukraine is hoping to placate Russia and calm hostilities with its neighbor even as the U.S. prepares a new round of sanctions to punish Moscow for what it regards as fomenting unrest.

The tentative agreement could put on hold — for now at least — economic sanctions the West had prepared to impose on Russia if the talks were fruitless. And that would ease international pressure both on Moscow and nervous European Union nations that depend on Russia for their energy.





U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, left, meets with Ukrainian Foreign Minister Andrii Deshchytsia for a bilateral meeting to discuss the ongoing situation in Ukraine as diplomats from the United States, Ukraine, Russia and the European Union gather for discussions in Geneva, Switzerland, Thursday, April 17, 2014.
(AP Photo/Jim Bourg, Pool)




U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, left, meets with EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton in a bilateral meeting to discuss the ongoing situation in Ukraine in Geneva, Switzerland, Thursday, April 17, 2014.

(AP Photo/Jim Bourg, Pool)

Secretary of State Kerry arrived in Geneva on Wednesday for the high-stakes diplomatic meetings with Russia, Ukraine and the EU.


Deal Struck to Calm Ukraine Crisis, EU, US and Russia say

BBC News,




US Secretary of State John Kerry and EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton hold a joint news conference

Russia's foreign minister and the US secretary of state have said that all sides have agreed to steps to "de-escalate" the crisis in Ukraine.

Sergei Lavrov and John Kerry spoke at separate news conferences at the end of the talks between Russia, Ukraine, the EU and US in the Swiss city of Geneva.

Analysts say the outline agreement could stay economic sanctions the West was preparing to impose on Russia.
Ukraine has been in crisis since the toppling of its pro-Moscow president.

This was followed by the seizing of government buildings in eastern Ukraine by pro-Russian separatists opposed to the new order in the capital Kiev.

Mr Lavrov and Mr Kerry said there was agreement that all illegal military formations in Ukraine must be dissolved, and that everyone occupying buildings must be disarmed and leave them.
They added that there would be an amnesty for all anti-government protesters under the agreement.
Mr Lavrov said the crisis must be settled by Ukrainians themselves and there must be long-term constitutional reforms.

Mr Kerry said the extent of the crisis had been highlighted in recent days by the "grotesque" sending of notices to Jews in eastern Ukraine, demanding that they identify themselves as Jewish.
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Old 24-04-14, 11:21   #10
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Default re: Ukraine-NATO Ups Military Presence+EU/US Plan More Action

This is really scary stuff!!
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Old 12-05-14, 05:19   #11
 
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Default re: Ukraine-NATO Ups Military Presence+EU/US Plan More Action

Quote:
Originally Posted by pop View Post
This is really scary stuff!!
From the first day this incident happened, I told a friend, this is going to grow, and most certainly won't be solved by by 'Monetary Sanctions'
Now even though Russia is sturggling financially (Many billions of dollars have been withdrawn from Russia by investors around the world), Russia continues to move/take control of more areas of around the Crimea....

This will seriously affect the whole of Europe, as the Crimea has underground pipes that supply a lot of oil to many countries in Europe + wheat to many countries in the world....

VERY serious indeed....the world can NOT allow this dreadful situation to continue - They can't let another yet another 'Madman' Dictator try to take control of Europe......
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Update re: Ukraine-NATO Ups Military Presence+EU/US Plan More Action

MATTHEW BARZUN:
Britain and America Will NOT Stand Idly By While Putin and His Cronies Destroy Peace in Europe


By AP, 11 May 2014


In his first intervention in the Ukraine crisis, the US ambassador to the Court of St James's issues an unequivocal warning to bullying Moscow.

Standing up to violence does not require that we be violent ourselves – but it does demand that we stand up.

This is precisely what America, in close partnership with Britain and our other allies, is doing in response to the mounting crisis in Ukraine.

We are standing up for the rights of Ukrainians to live freely in a stable and sovereign nation. And we are standing up to Russia’s indefensible duplicity, bullying and aggression.



Inspection: Russian president Vladimir Putin (centre) meets Second World War
veterans and Russian servicemen during his visit to Sebastopol, Crimea on Friday



Indisputably, Moscow is fomenting and directing violence in Ukraine. These actions are proof that Vladimir Putin’s Russia is playing by a different set of rules and that it seeks to change the security landscape of eastern and central Europe through force and intimidation.

Ukraine’s dismemberment by external forces would be a serious blow to the peaceful global order. We will not sit idly by and let it happen.

A lesson of the 20th Century was that peace demands that human dignity is protected and sovereign borders respected. It is a lesson we have not forgotten.

Our approach is driven by a determination to defuse the conflict and encourage dialogue. Our transatlantic alliance, which has guaranteed security in Europe for seven decades, is being tested. We must not falter.


As US Secretary of State John Kerry has said, the United States is prepared to do what we need to do to uphold it.
The first of our immediate priorities is to continue our strong support for Ukraine through constitutional reform, anti-corruption measures, and economic aid. This will help the people and increase their trust in government and faith in the political process.
We are also strongly supporting free and fair presidential elections on May 25 as the best route to political and economic stability.
The vast majority of Ukrainians, including two-thirds of the public in eastern Ukraine, want this election to proceed.



Ukrainian security forces guard a checkpoint outside the southern city of Mykolayiv last week


There are 100 independent observers on the ground to monitor the lead-up to the election, with up to 1,000 more being deployed to ensure that the poll meets the highest international standard.
This is how we want countries to determine their futures – through the ballot, not the bullet. And we call on Russia to endorse Ukraine’s democratic system – to support the right of all Ukrainians to participate in the elections, to refrain from any interference with election preparations, and to use their influence on the armed militants who are taking steps to interfere with that process.

Our second objective is to hold Putin and his Kremlin cronies to account. Some argue that Ukraine is experiencing only a domestic political crisis which has, regrettably, turned violent. Unsurprisingly, Russia has been the leading voice touting this narrative. The facts tell otherwise.
International observers confirm that there was no threat to Russian-speaking Ukrainians, the crude pretext for Russian involvement.

Equally, violent separatists who have engaged in kidnapping, torture and killings have been carrying papers showing that they come from Crimea or from Russia.
They make little effort to pretend they are acting independently. Russia’s claim to have no influence over the violent separatists whom they are funding, arming and directing is not credible.
Others suggest that the actions of the Ukrainian government and the separatists are comparable.

That is not the case. The post-Yanukovych government in Kiev has taken many steps towards de-escalation and is actively reaching out to all Ukrainians.

It has sent an amnesty bill to parliament to give extremists a chance to stand down. It has dismantled barricades and opened streets in Kiev to restore normality. It has guaranteed rights to use of the Russian language.
And it has offered solutions to the demands of those seeking a more decentralised Ukraine. Russian-backed separatists have offered nothing but continuing violence and destabilisation.
We expect to see another example of this today as pro-Russian separatists in Donetsk and Luhansk attempt to stage contrived and bogus independence referendums.

This latest development is very concerning. It is the Crimea playbook all over again. We will refuse to recognise the result of this illegal effort to further divide Ukraine.



Pro-Russian militants stand in front of the police headquarters in the southeastern port city of Mariupol on Friday.
Ukrainian forces attacked the building in an attempt to drive out pro-Russian militants



Even Putin pulled his support for these referendums, perhaps because he too realised that they would be unconvincing Russian-sponsored political theatre.
Whatever the reason, this was a positive step. But it is not enough. Much more action is needed
So far, Russia has chosen to intensify instability instead of working with us to defuse the crisis – notably by failing to fulfil the commitments that it made in Geneva on April 17.

From day one, Ukraine undertook to implement both the spirit and the substance of what was laid out in that agreement. Yet not one single step has been taken by Russia that seriously attempts to live by the spirit or law of what they signed up to.

The reaction of the US, Britain and the EU to Moscow’s malign interventions in Ukraine has been to introduce calibrated, comprehensive and co-ordinated sanctions. We are raising the economic costs on Russia.

And this week, John Kerry will be in London to discuss with William Hague and their EU counterparts what appropriate next steps might be. Were Putin to take steps that hinder or attempt to prevent the elections, he will bring more costs on Russia.


There has, however, been criticism of our response. One British paper belittled it by depicting a shirtless Putin on board a tank driving past a sign which said:

‘Stop. Or the West will put you on the naughty step.’


This characterisation of our approach ignores the potency of this 21st Century use of force. No longer is the choice between hand grenades or hand-wringing.

Sanctions are making Russia pay a steep price for its actions. Its credit rating has been downgraded to one step above ‘junk’ status, stock prices and economic growth are weakening, and the central bank has spent close to $30 billion (£18 billion) to prop up the rouble.

Unless Putin changes course, the current nationalistic fever in Russia will soon break. When it does, it will give way to a cold realisation of the profound economic costs of his policies.


Quote:
Much more action is needed from Russia to reverse its destructive course.
It must call on separatists to put down their arms
This crisis is one of his own choosing. Now he faces another choice: to leave Ukraine in peace and work with us to create a strong Ukraine – one that is not a buffer between East and West, but a bridge to both.

More...Ukraine's acting leader issues warning to pro-Russians that a separatist vote in referendums will 'destroy' the country
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Update re: Ukraine-Cowards That Dont Punish Russia-All About Money

The East is Red Again: Vladimir Putin Turns to China for New Alliance with Russia’s Biggest Neighbour and 'Reliable Friend' in Sign of Renewed Cold War

  • Putin met with Chinese President Xi Jinping at a start of a two-day meeting
  • Russia and China face criticism over Ukraine and South China Sea disputes
  • Meeting to focus on Asian security with leaders from Iran and Central Asia
  • Two sides yet to agree on a multibillion-dollar natural gas sale
Daily Mail UK, 21 May 2014


Amid a bitter crisis in relations with the West over Ukraine, Russia's President Vladimir Putin has turned to China to form a new alliance.

Putin, who called Russia's biggest neighbour his 'reliable friend, is in Shanhai to agree on a widely anticipated multibillion-dollar natural gas sale.

A deal would give Moscow an economic and political boost at a time of Western sanctions, although China has been warned by the US to avoid taking steps that might offset the ban.




President Vladimir Putin met with China's president in a diplomatic boost for the isolated Russian leader






Putin called Russia's biggest neighbour his 'reliable friend,' although a spokesman said
the two sides had yet to agree on a widely anticipated multibillion-dollar natural gas sale






Putin, shunned by the West over Ukraine, met with Chinese President Xi Jinping
at a start of a two-day meeting on Asian security with leaders from Iran and Central Asia



Putin met with Chinese President Xi Jinping at a start of a two-day meeting on Asian security with leaders from Iran and Central Asia.

He is hoping to extend his country's dealings with Asia and diversify markets for its gas, which now goes mostly to Europe.
Russia and China have been negotiating a proposed 30-year gas supply deal for more than a decade, and officials said they hoped to complete work in time to sign a contract while Putin is in Shanghai.

But Putin's spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, said Tuesday it wasn't finalized.








The Russian leader is hoping to extend his country's dealings with Asia
and diversify markets for its gas, which now goes mostly to Europe





A deal would give Moscow an economic and political boost at a time of Western
sanctions, while pressure on Moscow is thought to give Beijing leverage to push for a lower price





The deal to pipe Siberian gas to China's northeast would help Russia diversify export routes away from Europe

'Significant progress has been reached on gas, but there are issues that need to be finalized regarding the price,' Peskov said, according to Russian news agencies. He said a contract could be signed 'at any moment.'
The U.S. treasury secretary, Jacob Lew, appealed to China during a visit last week to avoid taking steps that might offset sanctions.

However, American officials have acknowledged China's pressing need for energy.
Putin and Xi attended the signing of 49 cooperation deals in fields including energy, transport and infrastructure, but no details were given at the ceremony.
The price of gas is the sticking point in the proposed agreement between Russia's government-controlled Gazprom and state-owned China National Petroleum Corp.
A deal has looked increasingly likely after Washington and the European Union imposed asset freezes and visa bans on dozens of Russian officials and several companies.




Vladimir Putin and Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich at the Russian-Chinese talks at the Xijiao State Residence in Shanghai








Russia and China have been negotiating a proposed 30-year gas supply deal for more than a decade,
and officials said they hoped to complete work in time to sign a contract while Putin is in Shanghai


The deal to pipe Siberian gas to China's northeast would help Russia diversify export routes away from Europe. It would help to ease Chinese gas shortages and heavy reliance on coal.

Putin told Chinese reporters ahead of his visit that China-Russia cooperation had reached an all-time high.
'China is our reliable friend. To expand cooperation with China is undoubtedly Russia's diplomatic priority,' Putin said, according to the official Xinhua News Agency.

Xi and Putin were scheduled to kick off a joint exercise between their two navies in the northern part of the East China Sea.
The two countries developed a strategic partnership after the 1991 Soviet collapse, including close political, economic and military ties in a shared aspiration to counter U.S. influence, especially in Central Asia.

A tentative agreement signed in March 2013 calls for Gazprom to deliver 38 billion cubic meters of gas per year beginning in 2018, with an option to increase that to 60 billion cubic meters.
Plans call for building a pipeline to link China's northeast to a line that carries gas from western Siberia to the Pacific port of Vladivostok.

A gas deal would mean China would be in a 'de facto alliance with Russia,' said Vasily Kashin, a China expert at the Center for Analysis of Strategies and Technologies in Moscow.

In exchange, Moscow might lift restrictions on Chinese investment in Russia and on exports of military technology, Kashin said in an email.
'In the more distant future, full military alliance cannot be excluded,' Kashin said.
'It will, however, take years for China to start playing in the Russian economy a role comparable to that of the EU,' he said. 'After that happens, both China and Russia will be much less vulnerable to any potential Western pressure and that, of course, will affect the foreign policy of both these countries.'
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Update re: Ukraine-Cowards That Dont Punish Russia-All About Money

Putin Warns of Civil War Risk in Ukraine as Election Looms


AP, May 23, 2014




Russian President Vladimir Putin, addressing business leaders, warned of the risk of civil war over Ukraine crisis.


Kiev, Ukraine (CNN) -- Russian President Vladimir Putin warned Friday of a "dangerous civil war" in Ukraine as fresh violence erupted ahead of this weekend's presidential election.

Putin, addressing an international economic forum in St. Petersburg, said the chaos was the result of a "state coup" in Ukraine "with support of the West, the United States."
Former Soviet states must guard against wider destabilization, he said.
He also defended Russia's recent annexation of Crimea, which was condemned as illegitimate by Kiev and the West.
Putin said Russia was ensuring the "possibility of free will for the people" who chose to join Russia in a democratic referendum in March.

His remarks come as the interim government in Kiev prepares to hold presidential elections Sunday to choose a successor for ousted pro-Moscow President Viktor Yanukovych.
Russian state media cited Deputy Foreign Minister Alexei Meshkov as saying Friday that Russia would decide whether or not to recognize the polls only after the vote takes place.

"Let's wait for the elections first. Naturally, when Russia considers this issue (on legitimacy) we will take into account all factors," official news agency ITAR-Tass quotes Meshkov as saying.

Unpaid gas bills

Addressing business leaders, Putin said Russia had tried to help Ukraine in its difficult economic situation.
But he said Ukraine must pay off the hefty arrears owed to Russian energy giant Gazprom for natural gas.

"The risks today of delivery of the gas supply are not our fault but quite honestly, everyone understands that this is because of the transit country Ukraine, which has abused its situation," he said.
"We provided Ukraine with 10 billion cubic meters of gas for free," he added. "This is not sensible; this is really stupid, and we must have limits."

Kiev and European Union leaders have urged Russia not to use the energy supply as a weapon.
Putin also said it was important for Russia to maintain good relations with the EU for cooperation in nuclear security, the fight against terrorism and drug trafficking, and to make the world more stable and predictable.

Separatists, right-wing militants clash

Clashes between separatists and pro-Ukrainian militants, the latter from the so-called "Donbass battalion" and far-right group Right Sector, were reported Friday morning near Karlivka in central Ukraine.

The chief of staff for Right Sector, Andriy Denysenko, told CNN that the pro-Ukrainian forces wanted to take down a separatist checkpoint in the area but were "attacked" by about 100 separatists.
After a battle lasting about two hours, he said, most of the pro-Ukrainian forces were able to pull back to a Ukrainian military checkpoint near Krasnoarmiysk, but four remained trapped in a cafe.
They cannot be contacted and pro-Ukrainian forces say they were either killed or taken hostage, he said.
Denysenko said there was no confirmed information yet on casualties but denied reports that 10 Right Sector members had been killed.
Disturbances were also reported Friday in Slovyansk, a stronghold for the separatists in the eastern Donetsk region.

A CNN team in Slovyansk heard about 10 explosions in what sounded like the outskirts of the town, following shelling overnight around a militant barricade.
Ukraine's Border Service said Friday that its guards had thwarted another attempt by armed men illegally to bring weapons and ammunition over the border from Russia.


RELATED:

Putin: Russia Will Respect Result of Ukraine Vote

By AP, 23 May 2014


MOSCOW (AP) — President Vladimir Putin announced Friday that Russia will recognize the outcome of Ukraine's presidential vote this weekend but voiced hope that Ukraine would halt its military operation against separatists in the east.
In Kiev, Ukraine's leader urged all voters to take part in the crucial ballot to "cement the foundation of our nation" but pro-Russia insurgents still battled government forces in eastern Ukraine.
Speaking at an investment forum in St. Petersburg, Putin said Russia will "respect the choice of the Ukrainian people" and will work with the new leadership. He said Russia wants peace and order to be restored in Russia's neighbor.




An elderly local woman passes a house destroyed by shellings in Semyonovka village, outside Slovyansk, Ukraine, Friday, May 23, 2014.

The village on the outskirts of Slovyansk, a city which has been the epicenter of clashes for weeks, has seen continuous shelling by the Ukrainian government forces, who have retaliated to the rebel fire. On Friday, a private house was destroyed by mortar fire that came from the Ukrainian side. There were no casualties, as the family living there had left the previous day, according to local residents. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)


Earlier, Putin had blamed the West for encouraging a "coup" in Ukraine when the nation's pro-Russian president was chased from power and for plunging the country into what he described as "chaos and a full-scale civil war."

In a live televised address from Kiev, acting President Oleksandr Turchynov, who is not running, emphasized the importance of Sunday's vote to choose a new leader.
"Today, we are building a new European country the foundation of which was laid by millions of Ukrainians who proved that they are capable of defending their own choice and their country," Turchynov said. "We will never allow anyone to rob us of our freedom and independence, turn our Ukraine into a part of the post-Soviet empire."
Authorities in Kiev had hoped that a new president would unify the divided nation, where the west looks toward Europe and the east has strong traditional ties to Russia. But they have now acknowledged it will be impossible to hold the vote in some areas in the east — especially in Donetsk and Luhansk, where insurgents have declared independence and pledged to derail the vote. Election workers and activists say gunmen there have threatened them and seized their voting materials.
Joao Soares, coordinator for an observation mission of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, said Friday he expects problems with voting in "less than 20 percent of the polling stations."
Twenty-one candidates are competing Sunday to become Ukraine's next leader. Polls show billionaire candy-maker Petro Poroshenko with a commanding lead but falling short of the absolute majority needed to win in the first round; his nearest challenger is Yulia Tymoshenko, the divisive former prime minister, who is trailing by a significant margin.
If no one wins in the first round, a runoff will be held on June 15. Most polls predict Poroshenko's victory in that contest.
At a security conference in Moscow, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov urged the West to reach a settlement based on mutual interests.
"If we sincerely want to help the Ukrainian people overcome this crisis, it's necessary to abandon the notorious zero-sum games, stop encouraging xenophobic and neo-Nazi sentiments and get rid of dangerous megalomania," Lavrov said.
Russia annexed Ukraine's southern Crimea Peninsula in March, triggering the worst crisis in relations with the West since the Cold War. Pro-Russian insurgents also have seized government buildings in eastern Ukraine and fought government troops for more than a month.
In the deadliest attack yet, pro-Russia insurgents attacked a military checkpoint and killed 16 soldiers Thursday, casting a shadow over the presidential vote.
The head of the General Staff of the Russian military, Gen. Valery Gerasimov, on Friday criticized Ukrainian authorities for what he said was using artillery and other heavy weapons against civilians. He also charged that radical paramilitary forces and private security companies were spearheading the Ukrainian offensive.
While many in eastern Ukraine resent the government in Kiev, they are also growing increasingly exasperated with the insurgents, whom they blame for putting civilians in the crossfire.
The village of Semenovka on the outskirts of Slovyansk, a city that has been the epicenter of clashes for weeks, has seen continuous shelling by the Ukrainian government forces retaliating to rebel fire.
Early Friday, a house was destroyed by mortar fire that came from Ukrainian government side, but locals reported no casualties.
Shelling continued later in the day, targeting Slovyansk, where several other buildings were also damaged. There was no word of casualties.
__



Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov addresses a security conference in Moscow, Russia on Friday, May 23, 2014. Lavrov on Friday urged the West
to stop playing what he described as a zero-sum game against Russia and reach a settlement based on mutual interests. (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin)





A pro-Russian armed man runs past a burning house after it was set on fire by a mortar
shell, on the outskirts of the town of Lysychansk, Ukraine, on Thursday, May 22, 2014.


In the eastern Luhansk region, sustained gunfire and shelling rocked the town of Lysychansk. One mortar bomb hit a house, which burst into flames.

Earlier today at least 11 Ukrainian troops were killed and about 30 others were wounded during an attack at a military checkpoint, the deadliest raid in the weeks of fighting in eastern Ukraine. (AP Photo/Evgeniy Maloletka)




A private house burns after it was set on fire by a mortar shell, on the outskirts of the town of Lysychansk, Ukraine, on Thursday, May 22, 2014.




A journalist films a destroyed house following a mortar attack in Semyonovka village, outside Slovyansk, Ukraine, Friday, May 23, 2014.




Local citizens talk to each other in front of a house destroyed by shellings in Semyonovka village, outside Slovyansk, Ukraine, Friday, May 23, 2014.


The village on the outskirts of Slovyansk, a city which has been the epicenter of clashes for weeks, has seen continuous shelling by the Ukrainian government forces, who have retaliated to the rebel fire. On Friday, a private house was destroyed by mortar fire that came from the Ukrainian side. There were no casualties, as the family living there had left the previous day, according to local residents. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)




A destroyed house, following a motor attack, is seen in Semyonovka village, outside Slovyansk, Ukraine, Friday, May 23, 2014.





A worker of Illich Iron & Steel Works steel plant attends an anti-war protest in Mariupol, eastern Ukraine, Thursday, May 22, 2014.


Ukrainian metals tycoon Rinat Akhmetov, riding a wave of public dismay with the fighting, issued a strong call against the mutiny in the east, which he described as a fight against the citizens of the region that has devastated Ukraine's industrial heartland.(AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda)



Workers of Illich Iron & Steel Works steel plant stand during an anti-war protest,
supported by the management, in Mariupol, eastern Ukraine, Thursday, May 22, 2014.





Workers of Illich Iron & Steel Works steel plant gather for an anti-war protest,
supported by the management, in Mariupol, eastern Ukraine, Thursday, May 22, 2014.





A journalist films a destroyed house following a mortar attack in Semyonovka village, outside Slovyansk, Ukraine, Friday, May 23, 2014.

The village on the outskirts of Slovyansk, a city which has been the epicenter of clashes for weeks, has seen continuous shelling by the Ukrainian government forces, who have retaliated to the rebel fire. On Friday, the private house was destroyed by mortar fire that came from the Ukrainian side. There were no casualties, as the family living there had left the previous day, according to local residents. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)
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Default re: Ukraine-Cowards That Dont Punish Russia-All About Money

The Tragic Victims of Flight MH17: EIGHTY Children Among the 298 who Perished on Doomed Plane
- Including a Brilliant Young British Mathematician, Catholic Nun, UN Worker and Leading Aids Doctor

  • Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 was shot down over territory held by Pro-Russian rebels in eastern Ukraine
  • Body parts and wreckage from flight, headed from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur, spread over nine-mile area
  • Nine Britons and 189 Dutch have been confirmed dead, along with 27 Australians and 44 Malaysians
  • Three Australian children - Mo, Evie and Otis Maslin, aged between eight and 12 - were among those killed
  • An entire Indonesian family - including a five-year-old boy and a three-year-old girl, also died in the attack
  • Two British students - Richard Mayne, 20, and Ben Po****, in his early 20s, were also named as victims today
  • Also named were press officer Glenn Thomas, 49, and Newcastle United fans John Alder and Liam Sweeney
  • As many as 100 of the victims are thought to have been Aids experts on their way to a conference in Melbourne




Daily Mail UK, 18 July 2014


Eighty children were among the victims killed when a passenger jet was shot out of the sky at 32,000ft by a surface-to-air missile yesterday.Two Indonesians aged just three and five who were flying with their parents, as well as three Australian children headed home with their grandfather, numbered among the 298 dead after Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 was shot down over rebel-held Ukraine yesterday.
Also on board the doomed flight were around 100 Aids experts on their way to an international conference, a Catholic nun from Australia and a British university student.

The nationalities of more victims were confirmed today - with the toll now including 189 Dutch, 44 Malaysians, 27 Australians, 12 Indonesians and nine Britons. Four passengers are yet to be verified. No victims are thought to be U.S. citizens.

The Boeing 777 aircraft was travelling from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur when it was hit by a sophisticated surface-to-air missile over territory near Donetsk held by pro-Russian rebels who the Ukrainian government says are backed by the Kremlin. Russian President Vladimir Putin has blamed Ukraine for the attack.


Scroll down for videos





Children: Evie (left), Mo (centre) and Otis (right) Maslin are pictured celebrating a birthday at home





Young: Evie Maslin, 10, from Australia was flying with her siblings




Accompanying: Grandfather Nick Norris, pictured, was on board the flight with his three grandchildren




Pose: Mo Maslin has is pictured above at a parade




Child victims: Three grandchildren, Mo Maslin, 12, (left), his brother Otis, eight, (centre) and sister Evie Maslin, 10, (right) were killed on the flight along with their grandfather Nick Morris





At one swoop: An entire Indonesian family was killed in the attack: John Paulissen, his wife Yuli Hastini and two children, Martin Arjuna Paulissen, five and Sri Paulissen, three





Devastation: A surviving relative shows photographers images of the family, who were on the doomed plane


The plane was shot down in an 'act of terrorism', killing all 298 passengers and crew on board, including three Australian children, aged between eight and 12, who were travelling with their grandfather.
The family had been on holiday and the children’s parents had remained in Amsterdam for a few extra days, but Mr Norris took his grandchildren on MH17 to get them back to Australia in time for school, Australian broadcasters reported.


Quote:
NATIONALITIES OF THE MH17 VICTIMS

Netherlands: 189

Malaysia: 44

Australia: 27

Indonesia: 12

UK: 9

Germany: 4

Belgium: 4

Philippines: 3

Canada: 1

New Zealand: 1

Unverified: 4

The tragedy has sparked outrage across the globe, with Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk leading calls on world powers to support his government in bringing to justice 'those b****** who committed this international crime' after a passenger plane was shot down over his country.
Security forces from Ukraine claim to have intercepted two phone conversations in which in which pro-Russian separatists seem to celebrate hitting the plane. In the wake of the aviation disaster tributes have poured in for the victims, who include families and renowned researchers.
Nick Norris, from Perth, Australia, was flying on the service with his grandchildren Mo, 12, Evie, 10, and Otis Maslin, eight, when it was shot down at around 16.00 BST yesterday.

Mr Norris’s son Brack, 24, paid tribute to his father, niece and nephews. ‘I’m a bit dizzy right now,’ he told MailOnline in Australia.
The family had been on holiday and the children’s parents had remained in Amsterdam for a few extra days, but Mr Norris took his grandchildren on MH17 to get them back to Australia in time for school, Australian broadcasters reported.
Mr Norris, the managing director of management consulting firm Collaborative Systemic Change Pty Ltd, is survived by his son Brack, who is the company's marketing manager, and daughter Kirstin, a marine engineer with the Royal Australian Navy. He was a well-known member of the South Perth Yacht Club.
The identities of British victims also emerged today, including two Newcastle United fans on their way to see the club play in New Zealand, and a student from Leeds University.
A Leeds university student has also been named as one of the British nationals who died when flight MH17 crashed in eastern Ukraine. Richard Mayne, 20, was originally from Leicester where he lived with his parents.

He also leaves behind his brothers Thomas, 24, and William, 19. Mr Mayne was studying maths and finance at the university.




Student: Richard Mayne, 20, was another of the British victims, who studied maths and finance at Leeds University








Traveller: Mr Mayne was on his way to spend a year in Australia, friends said, and had been at a celebratory barbecue days before where he was wished good luck



Speaking from the family home today, his father Simon, 53, said: 'He was on his way to Perth. When we were looking at flights together, there was this one that stopped in Amsterdam and we thought it would be perfect.

'I took him to the airport at 3am myself, to fly to Amsterdam. When I first saw it on the news, my heart dropped. I just thought, oh god, oh god – I couldn't believe it. We were hoping and praying he had fallen asleep at Amsterdam and missed his flight.
'You think you've got problems and them something like this happens and it all just takes over. I can't even bring myself to look at a photograph of him. We are beyond devastated. It is such a beautiful sunny day but our lives have been torn apart.'

Student Ben Po**** from Bristol was also named today as one of the victims. Mr Po****, who was in his early 20s, had just finished studying at Loughborough University and was headed to Australia for a year's placement abroad.
The university paid tribute to Mr Po****, today, saying he was destined to achieve a first-class degree.

'We are incredibly saddened to hear that one of our students, Ben Po****, was believed to be a passenger on flight MH17,' a spokesman said.




Student: Ben Po****, a student from Bristol who had just finished exams at Loughborough University, was headed to a holiday in Australia on MH17


'Ben had just completed the second year of his international business BSc degree and was flying out to begin a professional placement and to study abroad at the University of Western Australia as part of his third year.

'Ben was an excellent student and on course to gain a first class degree. He was also a fine athlete, who played on the university athletic union's Ultimate Frisbee team and won their Player of the Year honour.'
Glenn Thomas, a 49-year-old UN worker from Blackpool, was on board the flight. Mr Thomas was a media relations co-ordinator for the World Health Organisation, an agency of the United Nations agency, and had previously worked as a journalist for the BBC.
Malaysia Airlines has confirmed that 189 Dutch, 44 Malaysian (including 15 crew and two infants), 12 Indonesian, nine British, four German, three Filipino, and one Canadian citizen were also on the plane.
Mr Thomas grew up in Blackpool and worked as a journalist in the Lancashire seaside resort in the early 1990s, where his twin sister Tracey Withers still lives. It was reported that he moved to Geneva, Switzerland, a decade ago to start working for the WHO. He was said to have posted a status update shortly before starting his journey, which was supposed to end in Melbourne.
He caught a place from Geneva to Amsterdam, and boarded the doomed service from the Dutch capital to Kuala Lumpur, where he would have boarded a connecting flight. Mr Thomas lived in Geneva with his partner who lived in Geneva with his partner Claudio-Manoel Villaca-Vanetta, but is said to have kept up his ties to Blackpool.
Today one of his nephews said the family was 'totally torn up' by his death. The relative, a son of Mr Thomas's sister Tracey and her husband Mark, said his parents were on holiday in Spain when they heard the news. He said: 'She is on her way home; she is totally torn up. Like any twins they are very close-one of them feels everything the other does.She must have known in her mind something terrible was going on.'
Tributes were paid to Mr Thomas today, whom colleagues described as 'a wonderful personal and a great professional'. WHO spokesman Fadela Chaib said: ‘I can confirm he was on the flight travelling to Australia to attend the Aids conference in Australia.








Victim: Briton Glenn Thomas, 49, was among the 298 killed when Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 was blasted out of the sky by a surface-to-air missile





International: Mr Thomas (circled) is pictured above at a press conference delivered by the World Health Organisation - an agency of the United Nations - and is surrounded by high-ranking experts from the body


‘For the time being we would like to give his family time to grieve. We have lost a wonderful person and a great professional. Our hearts are broken. We are all in shock.’

It was also revealed that two Newcastle United fans were among the nine Britons killed. A fan site for the football club posted that two people were aboard MH17 on their way to New Zealand, where the team is playing in a pre-season tour.

One of the men is thought to be fan John Alder, who was in his 60s. The loyal supporter is known to other fans as The Undertaker because of his tradition of wearing a suit to every game.
He is thought only to have missed a single match since he started attending in 1973, and follows the team around the world for their away games.

It is believed John was travelling to the game with another 28-year-old fan, believed to be Liam Sweeney, from Newcastle.

Before the flight John had made his way from Amsterdam, then boarded the flight destined for Kuala Lumpur.

Tributes have started to pour in for the former BT worker, who was also known for his mullet-style haircut.







Newcastle Fans: John Alder, pictured left, and Liam Sweeney, right, were football supporters who were travelling to watch Newcastle United play in New Zealand when MH17 was shot out of the skies



Quote:
GROWING LIST OF THE DEAD: NAMED VICTIMS FROM THE MH17 TRAGEDY

Mo Maslin, 12, Australian Otis Malsin, eight, Australian Evie Maslin, 10, Australian
John Paulissen, Indonesian Yuli Hastini, Indonesian Martin Arjuna Paulissen, five, Indonesian
Sri Paulissen, three, Indonesian Glenn Thomas, 49, British, WHO press officer Richard Mayne, 20, British, student
John Alder, 60s, NUFC fan Liam Sweeney, 28, NUFC fan Elaine Teoh, student, Australian
Nick Norris, Australian Albert Rizk, Australian, estate agent Mari Rizk, Australian
Sister Philomene Tiernan, Australian, nun Roger Guard, Australian, pathologist Jill Guard, Australian
Joep Lange, leading HIV expert Pim de Kuijer, Aids expert Martine de Schutter, Aids expert
Eugene Choo Jin Leong, Malaysian, pilot Regis Crolla, Dutch Azrina Yakob, Malaysian, air stewardess
Sanjid Singh Sandu, 41, Malaysian, air steward Shazana Salleh, Malaysian, air hostess Angeline Premila, Malaysian, air hostess
Ben Po****, early 20s, British, student Fatima Dyczynski, Australian, entrepreneur Liliane Derden, Australian, researcher
Willem Witteveen, 62, Dutch, senator


Newcastle United manager Alan Pardew said today his players were 'deeply shocked and saddened' at the deaths of two such 'dedicated' fans.
The club said both men were familiar faces at every United away game and attended reserve and academy matches as well as first-team games.
The sixth Briton name today was helicopter rescue pilot and father-of-two Cameron Dalziel.

Mr Dalziel, 43, is from South Africa but travels on a British passport, it is believed. He moveed to Malaysia last October with his wife Reine, and their two sons Sheldon, 14, and four year-old Cruz, to take up a job with CHC Helicopter.

He had previously worked as a helicopter rescue pilot in KwaZulu-Natal, a province of South Africa.

Mr Dalziel's brother-in-law, Shane Hattingh, said his sister Reine was so traumatised she has not been able to answer phone calls from anxious relatives, according to Eye Witness News.

He said: 'She is basically alone there other than with new friends. So she couldn't even talk to me. Apparently three people from the company were there with her. It's crazy, the kids are going to be absolutely shattered.'

It is understood Mr Dalziel had been sent for training in the Netherlands and was returning on yesterday's Malaysia Airlines flight when the plane was shot down.

The airline has now said that all European flights operated by Malaysia Airlines will now be taking alternative routes, avoiding the usual route over Ukraine.
A real estate agent, from Victoria, Australia, his wife, a Perth management consultant, a Melbourne university student and a Sydney Catholic nun are among the Australian dead on board Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 that was shot down on the Russian-Ukraine border.
A Catholic nun from Sydney was also on board the flight. Sister Philomena, a teacher at girls' high school Kincoppal-Rose Bay, was the relative of school students at St Mary’s Catholic Primary School in North Sydney.
Malaysian student Elaine Teoh, who had been studying at Melbourne University, was on the flight, along with recently retired pathologist Roger Guard and his wife Jill from Toowoomba in Queensland, have also been identified from the MH17 flight.
Dr Guard was well regarded in the medical community, acting as the director within the Pathology Queensland laboratory in Toowoomba Hospital. He also helped perform autopsies on the victims of the Queensland flood and was well known for organising local marathon events in his local community for the Toowoomba Road Runner fitness group.
A Victorian couple Frankie Davison and her husband Liam were on MH17. Mrs Davison was a teacher at Toorak College Community, south-east of Melbourne.








Entrepreneur: Fatima Dyczynski, the founder of data company Xoterra Space, is thought to have been on board. Her parents are believed to be Australian





Pilot: Eugene Choo Jin Leong was flying MH17 when it was shot down. Malaysia Airlines has described him as one of their most trusted pilots






Victims: Melbourne student Elaine Teoh





Perth man Nick Norris





Real estate agent Albert Rizk





Mr Rizk's wife Marie







It has also been confirmed that NSW resident Sister Philomene Tiernan (centre), a teacher at eastern Sydney's Catholic girls' school in Kincoppal-Rose Bay, was also on the plane








Shot down: Recently retired pathologist Roger Guard (left) and his wife Jill (right) from Toowoomba in Queensland, have also been identified from the MH17 flight





Scientist: Leading HIV researcher Joep Lange (pictured) died in the MH17 crash




Conference: Pim de Kuijer, another AIDS researcher, was on his way to the Melbourne conference





Victim: Martine de Schutter, pictured, was another one of the delegation


'Toorak College Community is saddened by the loss of much loved teacher Frankie Davison and her husband Liam who were on the Malaysia Airlines flight that was brought down over Ukraine, this morning,' said a statement on the college Facebook page.
'Our hearts and sympathy goes out to their children Milly and Sam, and family. We are devastated by the news of this tragedy.'

Victorian real estate agent, Albert Rizk, and his wife Marie also died in the crash.
They had been in Europe on holidays for several weeks. They had been travelling with family friends who took an earlier flight and were waiting for the Rizks to arrive home in Sunbury, Victoria, where they were high-profile members of a tight-knit community.

Mr Rizk was a director of Raine & Horne in Sunbury.
President of the Sunbury Football Club Phil Lithgow said Mr Rizk was a sponsor of the AFL club as well as an enthusiastic community worker and his wife worked in the club canteen.
The couple's son James, who is also a real estate agent, plays football for the Sunbury club.
'He is a very good footballer and Albert and Marie were just lovely people,' Mr Lithgow told Daily Mail Australia.
'It is a shock to us all, Albert was just such a community person in the area.'








Australian death: Liliane Derden, from Canberra, was also named as a victim. She worked for the National Health and Medical Research Council








Victims from around the world: Regis Crolla, left, was one of the 189 Dutch nationals on board the flight out of Amsterdam, while stewardess Azrina Yakob, right, was thought to have been working on board the flight






Twist of fate: Sanjid Singh Sandu, 41, switched shifts on to the doomed liner at short notice




Loss: Shazana Salleh, pictured, was reportedly one of the Malaysian flight attendants on board




'Killed': Angeline Premila was another airline worker thought to have been on board


A spokesman for The University of Melbourne released a statement saying they were 'saddened' to hear reports about one of their students.
'Ms Teoh graduated from the University of Melbourne with a Bachelor of Commerce in 2008,' the spokesman said. 'Our thoughts are with her family and friends at this time.'
Other victims from around the world were also name today, including four members of the Malaysia Airlines cabin crew and the pilot. Authorities confirmed that almost two thirds of those on board were Dutch, including a member of the country's Senate, Professor Willem Witteveen.
Also named was Hong Kong native Fan Shun-po, a chef at an Asian restaurant in Rotterdam. He is thought been on board with his Malaysian wife Jenny Loh, who owns the restaurant.
Denis Napthine, a political leader in Victoria, Australia, confirmed MH17 was to connect with MH129 arriving in Melbourne this evening.

'It is with deep regret that I can now confirm nine Australian nationals from Victoria are among those who have been killed in the MH17 tragedy,' he said.

'This is a sad and tragic day, not just for Victorians, but for all people and all nations. The shooting down of a passenger aircraft full of innocent civilians is an unspeakable act that will forever leave a dark stain on our history.'





Mourners have laid flowers at the doorstep of the embassy to pay respect to victims





Passengers board their Malaysia Airlines flight at Bangkok airport as it prepares to depart for Kuala Lumpur early on July 18






Relics in the rubble: Passports of victims, such as this one which appears to show a Dutch teenager, were found in the crash site wreckage






Debris at the crash site of a passenger plane near the village of Grabovo, Ukraine where Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 crashed





Crash site: Rescue workers inspect the wreckage of a Malaysia Airlines passenger plane which was shot down today above Ukraine, killed all 298 people on board





Destruction: The Boeing 777 aircraft was hit by a sophisticated surface-to-air missile over territory near Donetsk held by pro-Russian rebels who the Ukrainian government says are backed by the Kremlin



UN Chief Expresses "Deep Condolences" over MH17 Crash:





Leading HIV researchers, including former president of the International Aids Society Joep Lange, were en route to the 20th International Aids Conference, AIDS2014, which will begin this weekend despite the attack.
It was also revealed today that the U.S. government does not believe any of its own citizens were on board, as nobody used an American passport to get on the plane.
Internal White House emails shown to Buzzfeed indicate that a list of passengers on the flight seen by government officials did not include details of U.S. passports.
Although there is a possibility that U.S. citizens with dual nationalities - which could give them access to another passport - were on board, nobody is thought to have contacted the U.S. consulate in Amsterdam.


WORLD LEADERS UNDER PRESSURE TO 'BRING THOSE B******* TO JUSTICE' AFTER MH17 ATTACK

Western leaders were today urged to 'bring justice to those b*******' who brought down flight MH17 - as the political ramifications of the attack began to emerge.
Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk said world leaders needed to realised there was 'a war in the heart of Europe' taking place, amid growing fury at Moscow's backing the pro-Russian separatists suspected of carrying out the assault.
David Cameron this morning hit out at the 'absolutely appalling, shocking, horrific' attack and warned: 'It cannot be allowed to stand.' Barack Obama and the front runner to be the next US President, Hilary Clinton, also lashed out at the missile assault.
But Russian president Vladimir Putin called for a ceasefire between pro-Russian gangs in control of the area around Donetsk and the Ukrainian government. He said what was happening in Ukraine was 'awful - it's a tragedy'.





Laying the blame: The Ukrainian authorities laid the blame for the attack on the rebels by denying any responsibility for the missile launch, with President Petro Poroshenko called the downing an act of terrorism





No survivors: Witnesses say body parts are scattered over a distance of 15km, suggesting the plane broke up in mid-air



Ukrainian leaders said the attack proved the need to toughen up the diplomatic pressure on Moscow.
The country's Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk called on Western leaders 'to support the Ukrainian government to bring to justice those b******* who committed this international crime'.
Mr Yatsenyuk called for a UN Security Council meeting to be held and for nations to do 'everything we can to stop this war - a war against Ukraine, a war against Europe ... this is the war against the world.'
Kiev mayor, Vitaly Klichko, addedL: 'The world must finally understand that in Ukraine, in the heart of Europe, is a war.'
He added: 'This tragedy shows that terrorists and those who finance them will not stop only at the Donbass nor only with aggression against Ukraine.'
Kiev Interior Ministry advisor Anton Gerashchenko said it was a 'terrible terrorist act organized by Putin by means of the terrorists'.







Pieces from the shot down plane and a suitcase were seen scattered near the city of Shakhtarsk in Ukraine's Donetsk region





Struggle: A firefighter sprays water on the flames in an attempt to extinguish the fire



But Mr Putin said he was in contact with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko.
Speaking today he said: 'Direct talks between the opposing sides must be established as soon as possible. All sides in the conflict must swiftly halt fighting and begin peace negotiations,' Putin said.
'It is with great concern and sadness that we are watching what is happening in eastern Ukraine. It's awful, it's a tragedy.'
Putin, who has blamed the airliner tragedy on Mr Poroshenko for refusing to extend a shaky ceasefire with rebels in the region, said he hoped the Ukrainian president would be able to offer a peaceful way out of the conflict.
US president Barack Obama was under pressure to take a more hawkish line after his former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton called for action.
She said a response was necessary to 'put Putin on notice that he has gone too far and we are not going to stand idly by'. It came after Senator John McCain said there would be 'hell to pay' in Moscow.
Russia was this morning bracing itself for a fresh round of sanctions - tightening the noose on the country's fragile economy.
But new sanctions are likely to be just the first step in the West's diplomatic response - as Europe and the US unite against Moscow.
'Fence sitting' leaders like Germany Angela Merkel are likely to face growing pressure to take a more hawkish stance against Vladimir Putin.
The missile assault also threatens to turn the tide in Ukraine's bitter civil war - strengthening the Kiev government's hand as it looks to overrun the pinned-down rebel fighters holed up in the east of the country.




A firefighter stands as flames burst amongst the wreckages of MH17 after it crashed, near the town of Shaktarsk, in rebel-held east Ukraine







Smoke and Debris Believed to be from Flight MH17 Falling to Earth:




Russian-backed rebel forces appeared to take responsibility for the atrocity in aftermath of the attack yesterday, but Mr Putin has rejected any suggestion of his country's involvement.
However, security experts have dismissed the idea that Ukraine's separatist rebels are capable of such highly-sophisticated missile attacks without expert military help.
Even without direct Russian support, the tragedy exposes the danger of allowing Russia to supply rebel groups in Ukraine with high-grade military equipment such as anti-aircraft missiles.
The immediate consequence of the attack is likely to be a tightening of the noose on Russia's fragile economy with increased sanctions imposed by both the US and the EU.
But with global attention back on the crisis the missile assault could also dramatically strengthen Kiev's hand against the rebels.
Nato has already warned Russia about the irresponsible way in which powerful weapons like tanks, armoured personnel carriers and surface-to-air missiles have been supplied to the militias in Ukraine.
Before yesterday's attack on the Maylasian Airways plane, the rebels had succeeded in downing a number of government jets.





Discarded: Luggage from the plane is piled up at the crash site by rescue workers performing recovery work in east Ukraine





Search: The Foreign Office is in talks with consular teams in Amsterdam and Kuala Lumpur to obtain passenger lists to establish how many UK nationals were on board the plane




Video Claims to Show Moment Malaysian Flight was 'Shot Down':




But now, according to Jonathan Eyal of the Royal International Services Institute in London, Mr Putin may be forced to be more 'circumspect about what he offers' the rebels for fear of being caught.
But this may turn the tide in the Ukrainian government's favour, Mr Eyal said. 'The rebels may well be overwhelmed by Ukrainian forces who are already pinning them down at the moment.'
Mr Eyal said the attack could prove to be 'the turning point in the Ukrainian crisis'.
He said: 'There are already indications that the Russians are very worried.
'This will act as a reminder to Putin that this escalation of military pressure that he thought he had eminent deniability for is fraught with massive risk. It makes it extremely difficult for the Russians to continue this policy of escalation. It might force them to be much more prudent.'
Mr Putin has released a statement blaming the Ukrainian government for the attack and has already spoken to the Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte and the US president Barack Obama.
The Russian president called for a 'thorough and unbiased investigation' of the crash.
He was earlier quoted as saying it is the fault of the Ukrainian government for failing to reach a compromise with the separatists.
He said: 'This tragedy wouldn’t have occurred if there had been peace on this land and hostilities hadn’t been renewed in Ukraine’s southeast.
'And of course the government on whose territory this occurred is responsible for this terrible tragedy.'





Action: A Whitehall source said that this evening's meeting was involving Government officials, rather than ministers, and was focused on establishing what needs to be done for any British citizens caught up in the incident




Firefighters put out Smouldering Wreckage of 'Shot Down' MH17:




But Mr Putin's remarks have not been echoed in Western capitals, with most leaders showing barely-concealed fury at Russia's aggression on its borders.
Stephen Harper, the Canadian prime minister has said Russian aggression was 'the root of the ongoing conflict' in Ukraine. 'While we do not yet know who is responsible for this attack, we continue to condemn Russia’s military aggression and illegal occupation of Ukraine,' he said in a statement.
He said he was 'shocked and saddened' by the disaster, which left one Canadian national dead.
The US has demanded an 'unimpeded' international inquiry into the disaster and warned evidence should not be tampered with.
Joe Biden, the US vice president, has said the plane appeared to have been 'shot down, not an accident.'
After a request from Britain, the UN Security Council will hold an emergency session today.
The tragedy is also likely to harden the resolve of 'fence sitters' like Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel.




Smoke signals: A plume of thick grey smoke rises from the spot where the Malaysia Airlines commercial plane crashed in eastern Ukraine





Aftermath: Remains of the plane lay scattered across the ground in Grabovo after the aircraft was shot down by a sophisticated surface-to-air missile





Insignia: The red and blue stripes which decorate the Malaysia Airlines fleet can be seen in this broken piece of the plane's exterior, as can a Malaysian flag






In pieces: Part of the wreckage of the Malaysia Airlines plane lies in an otherwise deserted cornfield





Carnage: A firefighter tackles a blaze at the site of the Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 plane crash in the settlement of Grabovo in the Donetsk region of Ukraine






Salvage operation: Emergencies Ministry members work at the crash site after the plane was shot down, killing all 295 on board



Shashank Joshi, of the Royal International Services Institute, said: 'This absolutely transforms the way the Ukraine crisis will progress. It would be an absolute game-changer if it was found to be pro-Russian forces to blame.
'European countries have been quite cautious so far, particularly Germany, because of its economic, energy and diplomatic ties with Russia, and the US has tried to encourage Europe to be tougher.
'If Moscow is found to be ultimately responsible for the provision of weapons used to bring down a commercial airliner, I think it would have a catalysing effect on the European debate. It would result in more co-ordinated European action with countries joining together to act more forcefully against Moscow.
'It will compel fence-sitting leaders like Angela Merkel to get more involved. Germany could cause real harm to the Russian economy by denying it access.'
He added: 'All the signs are pointing in a very ominous direction for Moscow. This would be an absolute disaster for Russian diplomacy, because for so long their strategy has been built around plausible deniability, ratcheting up tensions without the overt involvement of Russian forces.'
US Senator John McCain said Thursday that there would be 'hell to pay, and there should be,' if Russian forces or pro-Russian separatists in Ukraine were behind the missile attack that brought down Malaysian Airlines flight 17.
Mr McCain said: 'If it is the result of either separatist or Russian actions mistakenly believing that this is a Ukrainian warplane.'
He also slammed the White House for the shallowness of economic sanctions the US has pushed on Moscow after Putin annexed a region of Ukraine that was populated mainly by ethnic Russians.





Into a war zone: The jet was flying over the crisis-hit region of Ukraine, where the authorities have accused Russia-backed separatists of previous attacks on aircraft






Catastrophe: Fire and smoke rises from the wreckage. Ukraine President Petro Poroshenko denied his forces were involved in shooting down the plane






The aircraft, which was carrying 280 passengers and 15 crew, was flying between Amsterdam and Kuala Lumpur after taking off at lunchtime





'Terrorist act': The Ukrainian authorities laid the blame for the attack on the rebels by denying any responsibility for the missile launch






Ripped apart: Wreckage of the Malaysian Airlines flight after it crashed in rebel-held territory in Eastern Ukraine






Down: Smoke billows into the sky after a Malaysia Airlines passenger plane was shot out of the sky at 33,000ft over eastern Ukraine, killing all 298 people on board






Tragedy: TV pictures show a pall of smoke billowing into the sky apparently from the stricken aircraft






An unverified image posted online show Ukrainian inspecting what appears to be wreckage from the doomed flight





Poignant: Passports of some of the victims. Emergency services rescue worker said at least 100 bodies had so far been found at the scene near the village of Grabovo





Doomed: Flight MH17 takes off from Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam hours before it was shot down over Ukraine



CONTINUED........
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CONCLUSION:


Quote:
SHOT OUT OF THE SKY: OTHER PASSENGER PLANES HIT MID-FLIGHT

April 20, 1978: Korean Airlines Flight 902, which diverted from its planned course on a flight from Paris to Seoul and strayed over the Soviet Union.

After being fired upon by an interceptor aircraft, the crew made a forced landing at night on the surface of a frozen lake. Two of the 97 passengers were killed by the hostile fire.

September 1, 1983: Korean Air Lines Flight 007 shot down by at least one Soviet air-to-air missile after the 747 had strayed into Soviet airspace. All 240 passengers and 29 crew were killed.

July 3, 1988: Iran Air Flight 655 Aircraft was shot down by a surface to air missile from the American naval vessel U.S.S. Vincennes. All 16 crew and 274 passengers were killed.





Fear: A relative of one suspected victim walks arrives at Schiphol airport in Amsterdam tonight





Loss: A relative struggles to contain his emotion as family members of the victims are taken away from Schiphol airport in a special bus tonight






Torment: Worried relatives are driven away from Schiphol airport by bus tonight



Malaysian Prime Minister makes official statement on MH17:






Overcome: A female relative of one passenger weeps as she tells reporters in Kuala Lumpur she believe a relative of hers was on Malaysia Airlines flight MH-17






Tearful: The woman reacts to news regarding the tragic plane crash in eastern Ukraine






Grief: A family member cries as she receives the news of the ill-fated flight MH17 during a phone call at Kuala Lumpur airport








Powerful: The BUK surface-to-air missile system, similar to the one pictured, that is believed to have shot down flight MH17 is an old Soviet-built weapon designed to engage light aircraft, cruise missiles and drones (file photo)



The Radar Route of Malaysian Airlines Plane MH17:




Quote:
Why was MH17 flying through a warzone? European safety watchdog warned against using Ukraine airspace since APRIL

Air accident investigators are planning to inspect the proposed flight plan lodged by pilots on board Malaysia Airlines flight MH17.
The 17-year-old jet was shot down over Donetsk in Eastern Ukraine despite commercial aircraft being warned against using the airspace because of the ongoing conflict.
One of the major questions is whether the Malaysian flight crew received the warning from flight safety officials about the risk to safety.
The jet was travelling at 33,000 feet at 490 knots when it disappeared from radar screens over Donetsk.
It is believed that the Malaysia Airlines pilots ignored several warnings to avoid the airspace over Ukraine. It is understood the Malaysia Airline jet used the Ukrainian route to save fuel as diverting north or south would have taken longer.
In April, the European Aviation and Safety Agency warned: ‘Taking into consideration the recent publication by the Russian Federation of a series of notices to airmen (NOTAMs) modifying the Simferopol FIR which is under the responsibility of Ukraine, and their intent to provide air traffic services (ATS) within this airspace, the Agency draws the aviation communities’ attention to the possible existence of serious risks to the safety of international civil flights.





The doomed flight on the tarmac of Amsterdam airport just hours before it was shot down over Ukraine



‘Due to the unsafe situation where more than one ATS provider may be controlling flights within the same airspace from 3 April 2014, 0600 UTC onwards, consideration should be given to measures to avoid the airspace and circumnavigate the Simferopol FIR with alternative routings. ‘
On July 8, the State Aviation Administration of Ukraine closed its airspace to civilian aircraft after rebels shot a military transport aircraft that was flying over 20,000 feet.
The restriction, warned commercial aircraft from transiting
British aircraft were warned to avoid the area altogether. A Notice to Airmen, seen by Mail Online warned: ‘Due to the potential for conflicting air traffic control (ATC) instructions from Ukrainian and Russian authorities and for the related potential for misidentification of civil aircraft, UK aircraft operators are strongly advised to avoid, until further notice, the airspace over Crimea, the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov.’
The EASA supplied airlines with a list of alternative routes avoiding the conflict zone.
The US Federal Aviation Authority had also banned its aircraft from the Crimea region.
The suspected shooting down of a large passenger plane while flying at altitude presents airlines and their passengers with an extremely serious new development in air travel, according to aviation experts.
They also question the future of Malaysia Airlines - caught in the global glare of bad publicity following the disappearance of flight MH 370 earlier this year.
If the incident is confirmed as a deliberate act then Ukraine airspace could well be closed down, meaning diversions for UK carriers who currently fly to and over the area.
‘This could be a very serious development,’ said David Kaminski-Morrow, air transport editor of Flightglobal magazine.
He went on: ‘If reports are true, we are not talking about small-arm fire but serious weaponry. Normally even if planes fly over a war zone they can go high enough for the conflict not to be a worry.
‘Any decision about the opening or closing of Ukranian airspace will be a matter for the Ukrainians. It could well be that part or all of that airspace will now be closed.
‘Also, individual airlines, including UK carriers, could decide to detour around Ukraine.’
Mr Kaminski-Morrow continued: ‘It's really quite incredible that it should be Malaysia Airlines involved in this, after what happened earlier in the year.
‘This is not a small airline on a faraway route. This was a major airline flying from a European destination to a capital in the Far East. There must be serious concerns about how the airline can recover from this.
‘There will obviously be political as well as aviation concerns from all this. This will run and run.’



Quote:
WHAT WILL MH17 MEAN FOR AIR TRAVEL, AND WHAT WILL THE FUTURE HOLD FOR MALAYSIA AIRLINES?

The suspected shooting down of a large passenger plane while flying at altitude presents airlines and their passengers with an extremely serious new development in air travel, according to aviation experts.
They also question the future of Malaysia Airlines - caught in the global glare of bad publicity following the disappearance of flight MH 370 earlier this year.
If the incident is confirmed as a deliberate act then Ukraine airspace could well be closed down, meaning diversions for UK carriers who currently fly to and over the area.
'This could be a very serious development,' said David Kaminski-Morrow, air transport editor of Flightglobal magazine.
He went on: 'If reports are true, we are not talking about small-arm fire but serious weaponry. Normally even if planes fly over a war zone they can go high enough for the conflict not to be a worry.
'Any decision about the opening or closing of Ukranian airspace will be a matter for the Ukrainians. It could well be that part or all of that airspace will now be closed.
'Also, individual airlines, including UK carriers, could decide to detour around Ukraine.'
Mr Kaminski-Morrow continued: 'It's really quite incredible that it should be Malaysia Airlines involved in this, after what happened earlier in the year.
'This is not a small airline on a faraway route. This was a major airline flying from a European destination to a capital in the Far East. There must be serious concerns about how the airline can recover from this.
'There will obviously be political as well as aviation concerns from all this. This will run and run.'





Anxious: Family members of the victims are gathering at Schiphol airport's dakotabar to wait for news of their loved ones



Quote:
HIJACKINGS, CRASHES AND UNSOLVED MYSTERIES: A TIMELINE OF OTHER DISASTERS TO HIT MALAYSIA AIRLINES

December, 4 1977 - Flight MH653 was hijacked and crashed in Tanjung Kupang, Johor, killing all 100 people on board.
September 15, 1995 - Flight MH2133 touched down too far along the runway at Tawau Airport, Sabah, killing 32 passengers and two crew members.
March 15, 2000 - Flight MH85, travelling to Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, was damaged by the chemical oxalyl chloride, which leaked from canisters during unloading. The Airbus A330-300 was sufficiently damaged to be written-off.
March 8, 2014 - Fight MH370, carrying 12 Malaysian crew members and 227 passengers, went missing on a flight from Kuala Lumpur International Airport to Beijing Capital International Airport.

The Boeing 777 has still yet to be found, despite months of extensive searches in the southern Indian Ocean where it was believed to have crashed. The next phase of the search is expected to start in August and take a year, covering some 60,000 sq km at a cost of AU$60 million ($56 million) or more.
March 24, 2014 - Flight MH066, travelling from Kuala Lumper to Incheon, South Korea, was forced to make an emergency landing in Hong Kong after its main electricity generator failed.

Passengers onboard the flight later revealed they were told to prepare for an emergency water landing. However, the plane landed safely in Hong Kong in the early hours of the morning.
April 21, 2014 - Flight MH192, carrying 166 people, was forced to turn back to Kuala Lumpur while flying to India after a tyre burst and the right-hand landing gear malfunctioned. Police later confirmed an investigation had begun into whether the flight had been interfered with before take-off.
April 24, 2014 - A plane belonging to Firefly Airlines (a subsidiary of Malaysia Airlines) was forced to return to Penang after suffering problems with its landing gear.

A statement on the company's website said: 'This was because the aircraft's landing gear was unable to retract after being airborne. As safety is of utmost priority to Firefly Airlines, the aircraft was required to turn back to Penang.'
July 17, 2014 - Flight MH17 was shot down on the Russian-Ukraine border, killing all 298 people on board.




VIDEOS:

UN Chief Expresses "Deep Condolences" over MH17 Crash



Smoke and Debris Believed to be from Flight MH17 Falling to Earth



Video Claims to Show Moment Malaysian Flight was 'Shot Down'



Firefighters put out Smouldering Wreckage of 'Shot Down' MH17



Malaysian Prime Minister makes official statement on MH17



Kuala Lumpur International airport after plane downed



The radar route of Malaysian Airlines plane MH17




Australian Prime Minister's Statement to the House in Relation to the Tragedy of Malaysian Airlines MH17

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Default re: Ukraine-Cowards That Dont Punish Russia-All About Money

Is This the BUK Missile Launcher that Shot Down MH17 Being Smuggled Back to Russia:
- Motorist Captures Military Truck Carrying BUK M1 in Border Town





NEW
- A driver followed this military truck (left and inset) on a main road on Saturday night for two kilometres in a 'border area' of Russia before uploading the footage, filmed with a dashboard camera, on the internet. The cargo had no escort and Ukrainian sources have seized on it, captioning the footage:

'A Russian blogger filmed the BUK M1 in Russia, the one that shot the Boeing.' Reports from Ukraine suggested the BUK had been smuggled in the dead of night into Russia soon after the plane was blasted out of the sky on Thursday last week.


It came after images were released of a launcher rumbling through Torez (right), held by pro-Russian separatists, just two hours before the Malaysia Airlines flight was shot down.


A driver followed this military truck on a main road for two kilometres in a 'border area' of Russia before uploading the footage, filmed with a dashboard camera, on the internet.
The cargo had no escort and Ukrainian sources have seized on it, captioning the footage: 'A Russian blogger filmed the BUK M1 in Russia, the one that shot the Boeing.'


SCROLL DOWN FOR VIDEO





Offending launcher? A driver filmed this BUK launcher on the back of a military track rumbling back across the Russian border on Saturday





Claims: Ukrainian officials have seized the footage and labelled it a 'film of the BUK M1 in Russia, the one that shot the Boeing'


'For two kilometres, a blogger from Russia has been driving behind covered BUK 1M which, according to his words, had been driving from the Ukrainian border. His opinion it that is exactly that BUK that made the shot,' said one version spreading on the web.
The driver is heard saying: 'No kidding.'





Suspicious: Ukrainian spies reportedly filmed the launcher used in the attack being smuggled to Russia - with two missiles missing





A view of what is believed to be a BUK surface-to-air missile battery being driven along a path on July 17 in Torez, Ukraine




Launch site? The BUK missile system photographed in Torez hours before MH17 was downed by 2 missiles





Russian air defense missile system BUK M2 seen at a military show at the international forum in Zhukovsky outside Moscow, in 2010





Is this SAM, Missing 2 Missiles, being Smuggled out of Ukraine Back into Russia?

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Old 21-07-14, 03:46   #18
 
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Default re: Ukraine-Cowards That Dont Punish Russia-All About Money

WARNING - VERY DISTURBING PHOTOS


A Chilling Echo of Nazi Death Trains as MH17 Victims Begin the Grimmest Journey

  • International inspectors have examined bodies in a refrigerated train carriage nine miles from the crash site
  • Undignified scene with swarms of flies buzzing around train sparked international outrage but militia defended actions
  • Bodies have lain on street in summer heat for two days after a missile shot down Flight MH17 over eastern Ukraine

The stench of death is thick in the air as onlookers peer inside a freight train containing the bodies of some 200 victims of the MH17 massacre.
The scene, a grim echo of the mechanised slaughter of millions in the Second World War, has been created by Russian separatists who have collected piles of corpses from the plane crash and put them in refrigerated rail carriages.
There was international outrage over the undignified scene last night – with swarms of flies buzzing around the train – although defiant local militia men insisted they were doing what they could for the dead.




Macabre: The stench of death hangs in the air as the 298 victims' bodies are loaded into a refrigerated train after lying in the summer heat for two days





The international investigators, who are wearing body armour, were allowed to photograph some of the victims who had been removed nine miles from the crash site



The bodies had been lying spread out over fields for two days in the summer heat, before being removed from a large swathe of the crash site by yesterday.

Workers from local mines were bussed in to clear the corpses.Once the bodies had gone, only bloodstained military stretchers were left along the side of the road.

Controversy is now raging over not only the conditions in which the corpses are being kept, but also fears that vital evidence of exactly what caused the tragedy is being lost.

It risks becoming a gruesome tussle over the dead.
Ukrainian sources said they feared the piles of corpses might be moved to Russia or used as a bargaining tool by rebel leaders.
The bodies, each inside individual body bags, were last night still on the stationary train at Torez station nine miles from the crash site.

Ukrainian officials in the city of Kharkiv, about four hours’ drive away, said there had been an agreement with rebel leaders for the bodies to next be taken there so they could be visited by grieving families.




Criticism: The scenes, with flies swarming around the carriages, sparked international outrage but Russian militia have defended the procedure




World leaders want international inspectors to be given free access to the crash site, but the area is still being patrolled by heavily armed rebel troops






A Ukrainian worker passes body bags at the main crash site of the Boeing 777 near Grabovo, 100km east of Donetsk




The Bodies of Flight MH17 Victims are Being Retrieved........







Debris: Cranes were brought into the sunflower fields to handle the obliterated parts scattered across the land and covered in ash





Though most of the bodies have been recovered, workers could be seen inspecting the exploded aircraft for further remains late into the night





Negotiations: World leaders are working to repatriate the bodies, many of which remain along the streets of eastern Ukraine


Moment black box recorder from flight MH17 is recovered:




But there was last night no sign of that happening.
A spokesman for the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, which is monitoring the operation, said rebels had told the team that 167 bodies were in the train, and added that the monitors had checked three of the refrigerator wagons.
Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman, meanwhile, told a news conference 192 bodies and eight fragments of bodies had been placed in the train.

But he said the local rebels had yet to give permission for the train to set off.

The rebels responded by suggesting the pro-Western Ukrainian government was delaying the train’s departure, and arguing they could do nothing until the arrival of the international experts pledged by several countries to help determine what and who caused the crash.

A senior official of the pro-Russian rebels’ self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic, Sergei Kavtaradze, said: ‘They will stay there for now, until the issue is resolved. We are waiting for the experts.’





Workers continue to search the wreckage of flight MH17 in the search of additional bodies as approximately 100 are still unaccounted for






Progress: Identifiable bodies have been placed in refrigerated trains as plans are under way to transport them to morgues and eventually to the families





Political: After three days of negotiations, Russia has agreed to hand over the black box and the bodies that have been recovered



Another rebel leader, Andrei Purgin, said with heavy sarcasm that the investigators must be ‘walking from Kiev’ as it had taken so long for them to arrive.
Mr Groysman denied Kiev had put up barriers to the investigators.

He also said that as far as he knew 38 bodies, which local media said had been seized at gunpoint from rescue workers late on Friday and taken to a local hospital, were now among those on the train.

In the city of Kharkiv, where the bodies were due to be taken, local government officer Natalia Yakovleva said they had been expecting the remains since Saturday.
The town had prepared a special refrigerated warehouse to receive the bodies and had 312 hotel rooms on standby for relatives.
‘We have everything ready,’ she said. ‘But despite the agreement the bodies have not arrived.’


MORE:
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Old 23-07-14, 16:22   #19
 
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Default re: Ukraine-Cowards That Dont Punish Russia-All About Money

Two Ukrainian Military Fighter Jets Shot Down in Rebel Held Area in East of country
-Just Days after MH17 Disaster


  • Sukhoi-25 fighters shot down over area called Savur Mogila in east Ukraine
  • Defense Ministry says planes were likely carrying two crew members each
  • Attack comes less than a week after flight MH17 was blown out of the sky
  • 298 civilians were killed when surface to air missile struck their Boeing 777
  • That attack is blamed on pro-Russian rebels using a BUK missile launcher
Daily Mail UK, 23 July 2014


Ukraine's defence ministry says two of its military fighter jets have been shot down in the east of the country.
The attack comes less than a week after 298 civilians were killed when a surface to air missile blew Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 out of the sky.
That attack has been blamed on pro-Russian rebels based in the east of Ukraine, but they have denied having any involvement in the disaster.


Scroll down for videos





Debris: Pieces of one of the two military planes shot down by pro-Russian rebels in eastern Ukraine this morning are seen falling to the ground over the village of Stepanovka



Shocking Footage of the 2 Ukrainian Military Fighter Jets' Debris




The two Sukhoi-25 fighters were shot down 1:30 p.m. local time today over a rebel-held area called Savur Mogila.


Defense Ministry spokesman Oleksiy Dmitrashkovsky says the planes may have been carrying up to two crew members each.

The area in which the attack took place is around 20 miles south of the village of Hrabove - where the majority of the wreckage from MH17 is scattered.
It is also only around five miles south of the towns of Snizhne and Torez, where photographs and videos posted online appear to show mobile BUK missile launchers stationed early last week.

The images are not clear enough to tell whether they show the same launcher in both towns, but they have led experts to believe the missile that took down MH17 was fired from somewhere in the area.




Similarities: The fighter jet attack comes less than a week after 298 civilians were killed when a surface to air missile blew Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 out of the sky (pictured)




Some passports of the deceased

The radar route of Malaysian Airlines plane MH17


News of the two fighter jets being shot down comes as the first bodies of those killed in the MH17 massacre left Ukraine on a cargo plane that will transport them to the Netherlands.
The remains of around 200 international victims of the Malaysia Airlines tragedy have already been moved by train from the rebel-held city of Donetsk in eastern Ukraine to government-controlled Kharkiv.

The bodies are now being flown to Eindhoven to carry out an identification process which could take months.

There is concern however, that as many as 95 victims - one third of the total number of passengers on board MH17 - may still be missing.
Dutch officials counted only 200 bodies on the morgue train on which rebels claim they placed 282 corpses and 87 body parts from a further 16 people.

VIDEO:
Shocking Footage of the 2 Ukrainian Military Fighter Jets' Debris





More...continued...

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Old 23-07-14, 16:48   #20
 
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Default re: Ukraine-Cowards That Dont Punish Russia-All About Money

Putin 'Bears Responsibility' for MH17 Disaster, say U.S. Intelligence Chiefs
-But They Admit to Finding NO Evidence that Russian Leader was Directly Involved

  • Officials claim separatists didn't realise MH17 was a commercial jet
  • No clear evidence that missile which hit plane originated from Russia
  • But officials claim Moscow 'created the conditions' that led to disaster
  • Intelligence suggests culprits were inexperienced with hi-tech missiles


Russia 'bears responsibility' for the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, U.S. intelligence officials said, but they offered no evidence that Vladimir Putin was directly involved.

The senior intelligence officials were cautious in their assessment, noting that while the Russians have been arming separatists in eastern Ukraine, the U.S. had no direct evidence that the missile used to shoot down the passenger jet came from Russia.

The plane was probably shot down by an SA-11 surface-to-air missile fired by Russian-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine, the intelligence officials said.


They also said that after analysing taped phone conversations between separatists obtained by U.S. intelligence it could be all but concluded that the culprits did not realise they were targeting a commercial airliner.

Scroll down for video




U.S. intelligence officials say it's likely pro-Russian rebels were not properly trained in operated the sophisticated surface-to-air missiles which brought down MH17





It comes a day after the first pictures emerged of damaged panels from MH17, which appear to show evidence of shrapnel and missile damage





Officials say the separatists likely didn't intend to take down a commercial airliner




After the Crime, Comes The Cover Up: Tony Abbott on MH17 Evidence:






'Five days into it [following the crash] it does appear to be a mistake,' one official said.


The officials briefed reporters over intelligence related to last week's air disaster, which killed 298 people.

It comes a day after the first pictures emerged of damaged panels from MH17, which appear to show evidence of shrapnel and missile damage.

They cited intercepts, satellite photos and social media postings by separatists, some of which have been authenticated by U.S. experts.
But the officials said they did not know who fired the missile or whether any Russian operatives were present at the missile launch.





U.S. President Barack Obama visits the Dutch Embassy in Washington to sign a book of condolence




Quote:
HOW THE U.S. WAS QUICK TO BLAME PUTIN FOR ATTACK ON FLIGHT MH17

'It's pretty clear that this is a system that was transferred from Russia in the hands of separatists. We know with confidence, with confidence that the Ukrainians did not have such a system anywhere near the vicinity at that point in time'
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry


'A group of separatists can't shoot down military transport planes, or they claim, shoot down fighter jets without sophisticated equipment and sophisticated training and that is coming from Russia'
U.S President Barack Obama

'The context for yesterday's horror is clear. Separatist forces backed by the Russian government continue to destabilise Ukraine'
Washington's ambassador to the United Nations, Samantha Power

'If it is the result of either separatist or Russian actions mistakenly believing this is a Ukrainian warplane, I think there’s going to be hell to pay'
Former U.S. presidential candidate John McCain

They were not certain that the missile crew was trained in Russia, although they described a stepped-up campaign in recent weeks by Russia to arm and train the rebels, which they say has continued even after the downing of the commercial jetliner.

In terms of who fired the missile, 'we don't know a name, we don't know a rank and we're not even 100% sure of a nationality,' one official said.

White House deputy national security adviser Ben Rhodes said the US was still working to determine whether the missile launch had a 'direct link' to Russia, including whether there were Russians on the ground during the attack and the degree to which Russians may have trained the separatists to launch such a strike.

'We do think President Putin and the Russian government bears responsibility for the support they provided to these separatists, the arms they provided to these separatists, the training they provided as well and the general unstable environment in eastern Ukraine,' he said in an interview with CNN.
He added that heavy weaponry continues to flow into Ukraine from Russia following the downing of the plane.
The intelligence officials said the most likely explanation for the downing was that the rebels made a mistake.
Separatists previously had shot down 12 Ukrainian military aeroplanes, the officials said.

The officials made clear they were relying in part on social media postings and videos made public in recent days by the Ukrainian government, even though they have not been able to authenticate all of it.

For example, they cited a video of a missile launcher said to have been crossing the Russian border after the launch, appearing to be missing a missile.





Separatists previously had shot down 12 Ukrainian military airplanes, the officials said






About 200 bodies were transported to eastern Ukraine, where aircraft - including an Australian Boeing C-17 - were due to repatriate the victims to the Netherlands


continued.....Tears for The Dead

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Old 24-07-14, 16:49   #21
 
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Tears for the MH17 Crash Victims: Dutch Royals and Grieving Relatives Watch
-as First Bodies Arrive Back in Holland in Dignified Ceremony that Shames Russia

  • Bodies of around 200 international victims of the MH17 plane massacre have arrived in Eindhoven, Netherlands
  • Aircraft, which left Ukraine this morning, were greeted by grieving relatives and members of the Dutch royal family
  • Torturous identification will now take place, which officials have warned is likely to take several months to complete
  • There is concern over the total number of bodies that have been released by pro-Russian rebels in east Ukraine
  • Separatists claim they placed 282 complete corpses and body parts from 16 others on board refrigerated morgue train
  • But Dutch officials claim they counted only 200 victims, meaning a third of MH17's passengers may still be missing
  • Today MH17's black boxes were delivered to the Air Accidents Investigation Branch base in Farnborough, Hampshire
Daily Mail UK, 23 July 2014

The first bodies of those killed in the MH17 crash have arrived in the Netherlands to be greeted by grieving relatives and the Dutch royal family.

The remains of around 40 international victims of the Malaysia Airlines tragedy left Ukraine's Kharkiv airport on two military planes earlier today, ahead of a painstaking identification process which is expected to take several months.

The dignified reception at Eindhoven airport is in stark contrast to the treatment of the victims' remains in eastern Ukraine in the days after the crash, where pro-Russian rebels left corpses to decay in the summer heat in body bags dumped around the crash site.
Among those attending the solemn ceremony were King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima of the Netherlands, who held on to each other's hands as the bodies were removed from the transporter aircraft. At several points the Dutch Queen was seen wiping tears from her face.

Scroll down for videos




Upset: Queen Maxima of the Netherlands (pictured centre alongside her husband King Willem-Alexander) wipes away a tear as the bodies of victims of the MH17 crash are removed from an air force transport plane and placed in hearses at Eindhoven airport






Arrival: The first bodies of those killed in the MH17 massacre have arrived in Eindhoven to be greeted by grieving relatives and members of the Dutch royal family.
The remains of around 40 international victims of the Malaysia Airlines tragedy left Ukraine's Kharkiv airport on two planes earlier today






The dignified reception at Eindhoven airport was in stark contrast to the treatment of the victims' remains in eastern Ukraine in the days after the crash






Tears: Members of the Dutch royal family - including King Willem-Alexander (second from left) and Queen Maxima (centre)
- were in Eindhoven to meet the plane. Senior Dutch politicians and the grieving relatives of the 298 victims were also in attendance






Finally shown respect: A coffin containing the body of an MH17 crash victim is placed in the back of a hearse at Eindhoven airport





Released: The bodies of 40 victims arrived at Eindhoven airport on two military planes
- one of them this Dutch Air Force C-130 Hercules - earlier this afternoon






A convoy of hearses containing the remains of 40 victims of the Malaysia Airlines MH17 disaster drives past international flags as it leaves Eindhoven airport en route to a military base in nearby Hilversum



Members of the Dutch royal family - including King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima - were in Eindhoven to meet the plane, alongside the grieving relatives of the 298 people - including 10 Britons - killed when the Boeing 777-200 was shot down last Thursday.

The Dutch government has also declared today a national day of mourning.

200 bodies were released by the rebels yesterday and taken by train to the Ukrainian government-controlled city of Kharkiv, raising questions about the condition of the 98 other bodies.

Two military aircraft flew these remains to Eindhoven this afternoon, where they were met by the royals, Dutch prime minister Mark Rutte, and relatives.

The Netherlands government will hold a minute's silence before a motorcade takes the bodies to the Korporaal van Oudheusden barracks, where the process of identifying them will finally begin.

This morning the black boxes from flight MH17 arrived in Farnborough, Hampshire, where a team of British investigators from the Air Accidents Investigation Branch will analyse its contents for clues about what happened in the moments before the plane was shot out the sky.






Respect: King Willem-Alexander (second left) Queen Maxima (third left) and Prime Minister Mark Rutte (third right) observe a minute
of silence during a ceremony to mark the return of the first bodies of passengers and crew killed in the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17





Remembrance: Stewardesses at Schiphol airport observe one-minute of silence in remembrance of the victims of flight MH17





The whole of Schiphol airport came to a standstill for one minute this afternoon in tribute to the victims of flight MH17. The doomed Malaysia Airlines plane departed from the airport last Thursday





Passengers waiting to board planes at Schiphol airport stand still during a minute's silence





Tribute: There was a minute's silence before a motorcade drove the bodies
to Korporaal van Oudheusden barracks, where the process of identifying them will begin






Salute: A Dutch military musician plays the Last Post at the airbase in Eindhoven as the victims' bodies are placed into hearses





Sombre: Hearses are seen lined up at Eindhoven airport to transport the bodies to Korporaal van Oudheusden barracks, where the process of identifying them will begin





A coffin containing the remains of an MH17 crash victim is carried off the cargo plane at Eindhoven airport





Reception: The king and queen of the Netherlands lead mourners as the first victims of the disaster are repatriated from the Ukraine



Quote:
MH17'S BLACK BOX FLIGHT RECORDERS ARRIVE IN UK FOR ANALYSIS BY BRITISH AIR CRASH INVESTIGATORS

Black box flight recorders from the downed Air Malaysian plane have arrived for analysis by UK crash investigators.
The Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) said the black boxes had been delivered by Dutch safety authorities to the AAIB's headquarters at Farnborough in Hampshire.
The AAIB team will now go through the information from the ****pit voice recorder which will give them two hours of pilots' conversations as well as studying the contents of the flight data recorder (FDR).





***Information: Four days after flight MH17 crashed from the sky over Ukraine, rebels finally handed over the
Boeing 777's flight recorders (pictured). The black boxes have now arrived in the UK for analysis by British air crash investigators




Quote:
It is thought that the AAIB will be able to send details of their findings to the Dutch within 24 hours - giving the experts in the Netherlands further information of the last moments of the doomed Boeing 777 as it fell to earth in eastern Ukraine.
As the UK investigators poured over the black boxes, bodies from the crash site were arriving in Netherlands where the country's king and queen were taking part in a national day of mourning.
King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima are in Eindhoven with relatives of the 298 people - including 10 Britons - killed in the disaster.





Critical role: David Cameron tweets that British investigators would be drafted in to examine the black boxes


Quote:

An unconfirmed number of bodies were released by the rebels yesterday and taken to the Ukrainian government-controlled city of Kharkiv by train.

Two military aircraft will fly some of them to Eindhoven this afternoon, where they will be met by the royals, Dutch prime minister Mark Rutte and relatives.
The Netherlands government said a minute's silence will be held before a motorcade takes them to the Korporaal van Oudheusden barracks, where the process of identifying them will begin.

Now they have arrived in Eindhoven, the bodies will be taken to the Kaporaal van Oudheusden military barracks in Hilversum, around 65 miles away.
'As soon as a victim is identified first and foremost the family will be informed and no one else. That can take weeks or months,' said Mr Rutte.
In the central Dutch city of Utrecht, a team of 150 investigators has been pulled together to begin the grisly and painstaking task of trying to identify the victims.
They include police officers, military personnel, forensic dentists and other medics, who have been tasked with collecting samples from close relatives around the country to help identify the 193 Dutch victims.

Jos van Roo, the team leader of the Dutch National Forensic Investigations Team, known as the LTFO, told the Wall Street Journal:

'We have been collecting DNA samples, hair, fingerprints, information about scars or tattoos or moles.'

He said this information would then be handed the Netherlands Forensic Institute (NFI) which will use sophisticated software called Bonaparte to match those samples to the victims.
The NFI said this process was completed in around 30 days during an investigation into a 2010 plane crash in Libya, which killed 104 people.
But with nearly three times as many bodies to examine - and others yet to be found - it suggests this investigation could take many months.
Mr van Roo said the identification process has been so distressing - even for experienced investigators - that the team is being assessed by a psychologist on a daily basis.




Grim journey: A refrigerated lorry containing the coffins of 40 MH17 victims was seen arriving at Khirkov airport this morning. The bodies have since been loaded on to aircraft, reading to be transported to the Netherlands





Journey: The first bodies of those killed in the MH17 massacre have been loaded on to a cargo plane ready to be transported to Eindhoven in the Netherlands for a tortuous identification process that could take months





A worker uses a forklift to load bodies on to the Royal Australian Air Force Boeing C-17 plane, ready to be transported to the Netherlands






Preparation: The bodies of around 200 international victims of the Malaysia Airlines tragedy have already been transported by train from rebel-held city of Donetsk in eastern Ukraine to the government-controlled Kharkiv airport (pictured)





Ready: A transport plane that will be used to carry the remains of the victims of Malaysia Airlines MH17 downed over rebel-held territory in eastern Ukraine, is parked on the tarmac before heading to the Netherlands






Tribute: Ukrainian officials attend a farewell ceremony next the transport plane that will be used to carry the remains of some of the victims of MH17 later today



The number of bodies on board the plane taking the bodies to the Netherlands is causing grieving relatives around the world fresh anguish after it emerged that as many as a third of the passengers could still be missing.
As the makeshift morgue arrived in the ‘safe’ Ukrainian city of Kharkiv yesterday rebel commanders claimed it contained 282 bodies and 87 body parts from an additional 16 people.
This would have accounted for all of the 298 murdered when the Boeing 777 was shot down by an anti-aircraft missile last week.

However, after carrying out a body count last night, Dutch forensic experts found the number to be ‘significantly less’ than the figure claimed by separatist leader Alexander Borodai.
The head of the Dutch team leading the investigation, Jain Tuinder, said he estimated just 200 bodies had arrived in Kharkiv as well as a number of unidentified body parts.

Mr Tuinder vowed to recover the others, saying: ‘They will be found. We have to find them... We will not leave until every remain has left this country so we will have to go on and bargain again with the people over there.’




Ceremony: A coffin containing the body of an MH17 victim is loaded onto a plane for transport to the Netherlands






Solemn: Four bodies are carried up to a transport plane during a ceremony at Kharkiv airport this morning.
The bodies are being flown to the Netherlands after being recovered from the MH17 crash site





Salute: Dignitaries from the Netherlands, (Hans Docter, the Dutch Ambassador, third from left) and Australia (ambassador Gene Dunn, left of Mr Docter; Colonel Peter Steel, saluting in black hat; and retired Air Chief Marshal Angus Houston, saluting in green hat) watch as the coffin of an MH17 victim is carried towards the plane





Heading to the Netherlands: Honour guards load a coffin of one of the victims of Malaysia Airlines MH17 on to a transport plane



Yesterday morning a train pulled into a station in the government-held city of Kharkiv, where the Dutch investigators took charge of the bodies.
A minute’s silence was held before the doors opened and international investigators finally began the gruesome task of trying to identify those inside.

There had been fears the bodies, including the ten Britons killed, would be used as a bargaining chip by pro-Russian separatists – believed to be behind the atrocity.
The train’s 185-mile journey from the crash site in the rebel-held village of Hrabove, eastern Ukraine, took 17 hours.
According to the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe, there are still human remains lying on the crash site.

'We observed the presence of smaller body parts at the site,' OSCE spokesman, Michael Bociurkiw, told a briefing in Ukraine's eastern city of Donetsk after his group inspected the site today.
He said all recovery efforts seem to have ended but that at the site his group saw a plastic bag with some human remains left behind while Malaysian experts noticed a strong smell indicating the likely presence of more remains in another spot.
'We've never really seen that intensive combing over the site - people arm in arm going over the fields,' Bociurkiw said, adding there was effectively no security at the site and that so far only a small number of international experts visited it.


The Train Carrying 282 Victims Arrives in Ukrainian City Kharkiv





It has also emerged that the ****pit is believed to have been sawn in half while under the control of Russian-backed separatists.

International monitors said large parts of the ****pit and every part of the fuselage were carried off questioning why such important pieces of evidence has been tampered with.

The separatists and Russia have denied shooting down the plane, which was flying from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur.

However, the ****pit was found in a section of the crash site which had been cordoned off for the first two days after the plane went down. Witnesses claim the ****pit had been cut in half with diesel-powered saws.

'The rear part of the aircraft, one of the biggest intact pieces, has definitely been hacked into,' Michael Bociurkiw, spokesman for the group of international monitors from the Organize for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) said

The investigation has been all the more challenging after rebel militia were accused of allowing the crash site's desecration and obstructing the process of recovering the bodies of the 298 victims.
In some cases, remains have been left out for more than two days in sweltering heat and to compound matters the refrigeration unit on the train carrying them to Donetsk reportedly broke down.





Tragic journey: A Dutch C130 aircraft carrying 16 bodies leaves Ukrainian soil bound for the Netherlands following a ceremony at Kharkiv aiport this morning. The plane is the first of a series of flights to the Netherlands transporting MH17 victims from the crash site





Convoy: A transport plane carrying some of the MH17 victims departs for the Netherlands from Kharkiv this morning.
Another military cargo plane loaded with remains is seen of the runway, preparing to take off later today



Pro-Russian separatists - who stand accused of bringing down the aircraft, possibly with a missile supplied by Moscow - bowed to a furious clamour for the bodies and black boxes to be handed to investigators five days after the crash.

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak said the boxes were handed over to the Malaysian team in Donetsk at 9pm Ukraine time last night.
The small handing over ceremony has finally solved the question as to what had happened to the two vital devices.

It was not immediately known what the Malaysian team would do with the black boxes, but there was speculation they would pass the boxes on to experts with experience of reading the data.

Mr Najib revealed that in recent days the team had been working quietly behind the scenes to establish contact with 'those' - a reference to the rebels - in charge of the MH17 crash site.
The contact was finally made - but he made it clear it had not been easy.

'Under difficult and fluid circumstances, we have been discussing the problems that have occupied us all - securing vital evidence from the aircraft, launching an independent investigation and above all recovering the remains of those who lost their lives.'





Emotional: A sign displayed inside Amsterdam's Schipol airport
- from where MH17 took off - expresses sympathy to everyone facing a loss as a result of the crash





Mourning: The Dutch flag flies at half mast on the parliament building in The Hague.
The Dutch government has declared today a day of national mourning for the victims of the MH187 disaster






Flags fly at half mast over the Dutch parliament in The Hague. The Netherlands government said a minute's silence will be held before
a motorcade takes the bodies to the Korporaal van Oudheusden barracks near Eindhoven, where the process of identifying them can begin



In his first detailed response to criticism of Russia's role in the crisis, President Vladimir Putin called on Western powers not to meddle in Russia's domestic affairs and said steps were needed to strengthen the country's military capabilities because of moves by NATO and to protect the economy from 'external threats'.

The Kremlin leader did, however, say that Russia would use its influence with separatists in east Ukraine to allow a full investigation into the downing of a Malaysian airliner, but said the West must put pressure on Kiev to end hostilities.

Meanwhile, David Cameron has warned other European countries they must all ‘share the burden’ of imposing tougher sanctions on Russia for ‘fomenting’ the conflict in neighbouring Ukraine.
The Prime Minister admits that the UK economy could suffer from curbs on financial deals with Russia, but insists the consequences of failing to act could be far worse.

Foreign ministers from across the EU meet in Brussels today to discuss imposing sanctions on named companies and individuals, but Britain wants to go further with embargoes on dealings with the Russian defence, banking, energy and aviation industries.


VIDEOS

First Bodies of MH17 Victims Leave Ukraine on Transport Plane



The Train Carrying 282 Victims Arrives in Ukrainian City Kharkiv


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Old 25-07-14, 23:03   #22
 
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Update re: Ukraine-Cowards That Dont Punish Russia-All About Money

The Selfish Cowardice of Germany, France and Italy
-Whose Leaders have Done so Little to Bring Putin and his Kremlin Gangsters Into Line



Daily Mail UK, 25 July 2014


There seems little doubt that the pro-Russian separatists of East Ukraine have on their hands the blood of the 298 men, women and children whom they killed when they shot down Malaysian Airways flight MH17 with a surface-to-air-missile.
And no hands are bloodier than those of their puppet-master Vladimir Putin.

However, I believe that the stain of guilt extends to Germany, France and Italy, whose leaders have disgracefully done so little to bring the Russian leader and his fellow Kremlin gangsters to heel.





Whenever urged by the international community to punish Russia by imposing economic sanctions, the heads of these
three governments have put their own countries’ prosperity before a defence of Western democratic values and, indeed, human life.



Of course, this isn’t the first time they have cynically placed their commercial interests with Moscow ahead of a principled moral stand.

When the same separatists illegally annexed the Crimea from Ukraine earlier this year, a barrage of calls went up for tough financial and trade sanctions to be imposed on Russia, in order to try to force Putin to the negotiating table.
Yet the naked financial self-interest among individual nations in the Western alliance prevented any serious measures from being introduced.
America’s position, too, has been one of abject cowardice.





The U.S.'s main cowardly policy seems to be to leave Angela Merkel, the German chancellor, to sort out the problems with the increasingly bellicose Putin


Although notionally the leader of the international response to what is happening in Ukraine, Barack Obama’s administration has been extremely reluctant to get involved.
Although it belatedly imposed new, tougher sanctions last week just before the MH17 atrocity, those measures were pretty lame: just two Russian banks, two energy companies and some arms manufacturers being hit with sanctions.

But I suppose this was only to be expected from a White House that is incapable of running a coherent foreign policy and is self-evidently uninterested in European affairs.

As a result, it has been business as usual for Putin’s kleptocrat cronies — with only a handful being subject to minor financial restrictions imposed by the EU.

Dishonourably passing the buck, the U.S.’s main policy seems to be to leave Angela Merkel, the German chancellor, to sort out the problems with the increasingly bellicose Putin.
As a result, Putin has been able to exploit Germany’s heavy economic dependence on Russia and treat his international critics with derision.


And I would argue that this supine approach from Obama and Merkel could have been a significant factor in encouraging the pro-Russian separatists in their campaign of reckless aggression, leading to the slaughter of the 298 aboard the Malaysian passenger jet.

Meanwhile, Germany and Italy have happily continued to benefit from huge amounts of Russian gas flowing into their homes and factories.
Last year, Germany took more than 40 billion cubic metres of gas from Russia out of a total of 127 billion exported to the whole of Western Europe, and the Italians took 26 billion.

The trade has been two-way. Germany exported 36 billion euros worth of goods to Russia last year.
The problem is that Angela Merkel knows that the Berlin-Moscow relationship is one that she destabilises at Germany’s peril.
For although Germany’s economy is strong relative to the rest of Europe’s, it is going through an extended period of low or no-growth as a result of the over-valuation of the euro, which makes its exports to outside the eurozone prohibitively expensive.

For Mrs Merkel, the priority is to shore up the European Union — rather than lead a principled international response to Russian aggression.
Yet that is a deeply unethical attitude. Germany’s duty, surely, is to join the rest of Europe and America to be a bulwark of Western values, such as liberty and democracy, which means standing up to tyrants such as Putin.

Germany is not alone in this cowardice pact.

France is determined to sell Putin the means to wreak murder and destruction in Russia’s name against innocent people.
The French only have small reliance on Russian gas, but they have an increasing dependence on Russia’s belligerent defence ministry to keep their armaments industry going.

The Kremlin has bought two Mistral-class helicopter-carrier assault ships for deployment in the Black Sea — from where they could be used for attacks on Ukraine and, indeed, on any aircraft in danger of straying into Ukrainian airspace.
The deal guarantees 1,000 French jobs over the next four years in the otherwise run-down dockyard town of St Nazaire — vital for a country whose economy is a basket-case.





Left to right: Russian President Vladimir Putin, British Prime Minister David Cameron,
U.S. President Barack Obama and French President Francois Hollande in 2013


For once, however, it would seem that Britain is taking a serious moral lead. As well as condemning the Mistral sale by France, Mr Cameron is calling for whole sectors of the Russian economy to be put under sanctions, including financial services.
But even Britain’s moral lead has become tarnished.

For the Tory Party has been exposed for taking donations of almost £1 million from leading Russians over recent years.

The latest came earlier this month when the wife of a billionaire Russian oligarch with close links with Putin gave the party £160,000 after successfully bidding at a lavish Tory fund-raising dinner to play tennis with Mr Cameron and Boris Johnson.





Police officers secure a refrigerated train loaded with bodies of the passengers of Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 as it arrives in a Kharkiv factory





Ukrainian State Emergency Service employees search for bodies among the wreckage at the crash site of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17



In an attempt to raise more money to bankroll the Tories’ election campaign, the services of Lynton Crosby and party co-chairman, Lord Feldman, were thrown in as ‘ball-boys’.

The woman donor is the wife of Vladimir Chernukhin, who was Russia’s deputy finance minister during Putin’s first term. He received Russia’s Order of Honour from Putin a decade ago.
And despite calls last night for the Conservatives to ‘come clean’ over other big donations from Russians and hand the money back, party officials stubbornly refused.

As for Europe’s other leaders, they must ask themselves one fundamental question: how many more plane-loads of defenceless civilians must be killed before they choose to put the values of Western civilisation, justice and democracy above money in the bank?
For that, or something like it, is what a failure to close down business with Russia now would mean — and the stain it would leave on the consciences of the Germans and the French could become indelible.


UK Prime Minister David Cameron: Pressure Mounting on Putin over MH17


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Old 07-08-14, 17:17   #23
 
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Arrow Right Russia Bans Food from West/Threatens Airspace

Russia Imposes a 'Full Embargo' on Food Imports from Western Countries in Retaliation for Sanctions over Ukraine... and Considers Banning Flights to the Region
  • PM Dimitry Medvedev strikes back at the West with year-long sanctions
  • Banned products include meat, fruit, vegetables, fish, cheese and dairy
  • The EU, U.S., Australia, Canada and Norway among countries affected
  • EU's agricultural exports to Russia totalled more than £9billion last year
AP. 7 August 2014

Russia today imposed a 'full embargo' on most food imports from the West in retaliation for sanctions over Ukraine - a sweeping move that will cost Western farmers billions of dollars but could also lead to empty shelves in Russian cities.
The decision shows that President Vladimir Putin has no intention of bowing to Western pressure over Ukraine and will instead try to strike back at the West.
It also demonstrated that the Kremlin is ready to inflict damage on Russia while pursuing its course in Ukraine.

Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev also warned that Russia could block transit flights for European and U.S. Airlines to the Asia-Pacific region.



Scroll down for video





'Sanctions only lead to a deadlock': Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev announces
a 'full embargo' on most food imports from the West in retaliation for sanctions over Ukraine



In televised comments, he told a government meeting: 'Russia is introducing a full embargo on imports of beef, pork, fruit and vegetable produce, poultry, fish, cheese, milk and dairy products from the European Union, United States, Australia, Canada and Norway.'
The ban goes into effect immediately and will last one year unless 'our partners demonstrate a constructive approach' with regards to sanctioning Russia, he said.

'Of course this is a serious decision for the suppliers of such foods from these countries.'

The U.S. and the EU have accused Russia, which annexed Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula in March, of fomenting tensions in eastern Ukraine by supplying arms and expertise to a pro-Moscow insurgency, and have imposed asset freezes and loan bans on a score of individuals and companies.



Could lead to empty shelves: Shoppers buy imported fruit at a supermarket in Moscow. Experts say
local producers will find it hard to fill the gap left by the ban because of poor efficiency and shortage of funds


Russia depends heavily on imported foodstuffs - most of it from the West - particularly in the largest and most prosperous cities such as Moscow.
In 2013, the EU's agricultural exports to Russia totalled 11.8 billion euros (£9.3 billion), while the U.S. Department of Agriculture says food and agricultural imports from the U.S. amounted to $1.3 billion.
Experts said that local producers will find it hard to fill the gap left by the ban, as the nation's agricultural sector has continued to suffer from poor efficiency and shortage of funds.

The damage to consumers inflicted by the ban will be felt particularly hard in big cities like Moscow, where imported food fills an estimated 60-70 per cent of the market.
Medvedev said Russia could go further and ban Western carriers from flying over Russia on flights to and from Asia - a move that would significantly swell costs and increase flight time.








Unrest: The U.S. and the EU have accused Russia of fomenting tensions in Ukraine by supplying arms and
expertise to pro-Moscow separatists (above) who has also been blamed for the shooting down of flight MH17


He said there has been no decision on that yet, and wouldn't specify when and under what conditions the move could be taken.
Medvedev made it clear that Russia hopes that the sanctions will make the West revise its policy and stop trying to pressure Russia with sanctions.
'Until the last moment we hoped that our partners would understand that sanctions only lead to a deadlock, and no one needs them, but they didn't,' he said.

'We hope our partners will put a pragmatic economic approach above bad policy considerations, and they will start thinking instead of trying to scare us.'

If the West doesn't revise its course, Russia may follow up by introducing restrictions regarding imports of planes, navy vessels and cars, Medvedev warned, but added that the government will realistically assess its own production potential.


Russia bans EU food imports and threatens airspace restrictions:


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Old 08-08-14, 13:25   #24
 
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Update re: VIDEOs-New Russian Cold WAR? >F16 Jet's Near Miss with Russian MiG

Ukraine Crisis - What You're Not Being Told:



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Old 16-08-14, 13:24   #25
 
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Update re: VIDEOs-New Russian Cold WAR? >F16 Jet's Near Miss with Russian MiG

Russia to Ban US from Using Space Station over Ukraine Sanctions

In retaliation for imposing sanctions, Russia will also bar its rocket engines from launching US military satellites






From left:
Steve Swanson from the US and Alexander Skvortsov and Oleg Artemyev from Russia before the launch
Photo: Camera Press/Ria Novosti

Reuters

Russia is to deny the US future use of the International Space Station beyond 2020 and will also bar its rocket engines from launching US military satellites as it hits back at American sanctions imposed over Ukraine crisis.

Russia’s deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin announced a series of punitive measures on Tuesday against the US in response to sanctions imposed after Russia annexed Crimea.

The two countries have long cooperated closely on space exploration despite their clashes in foreign policy.

The Space Station is manned by both American and Russian crew, but the only way to reach it is by using Russia’s Soyuz spacecraft.

The US is keen to keep the $100 billion (£600) ISS flying until at least 2024, four years beyond its original target.

At a time when Moscow is struggling to reform its accident-plagued space programme, Mr Rogozin said US plans to deny export licences for some high-technology items were a blow to Russian industry. “These sanctions are out of place and inappropriate,” Mr Rogozin said. “We have enough of our own problems.”

Moscow’s response would affect NK-33 and RD-180 engines which Russia supplies to the US, Mr Rogozin said. “We are ready to deliver these engines but on one condition that they will not be used to launch military satellites,” he said.

RD-180 engines are used to boost Atlas 5 rockets manufactured by United Launch Alliance, a partnership of Lockheed Martin and Boeing that holds a virtual monopoly on launching U.S. military satellites.

Mr Rogozin said Moscow was planning "strategic changes" in its space industry after 2020 and aims to use money and "intellectual resources" that now go to the space station for a "a project with more prospects".
He suggested Russia could use the station without the United States, saying: "The Russian segment can exist independently from the American one. The U.S. one cannot."

The US space agency NASA is working with companies to develop space taxis with the goal of restoring US transport to the station by 2017

But the United States currently pays Russia more than $60 million per person to fly its astronauts up.

Mr Rogozin said Russia will suspend the operation of 11 GPS sites on its territory from June and seek talks with Washington on opening similar sites in the United States for Russia's own satellite navigation system, Glonass.

He threatened the permanent closure of the GPS sites in Russia if that is not agreed by September.
He said the suspension of the sites would not affect everyday operations of the GPS system in Russia, where it is used by millions of Russians for navigation on their smartphones and in their cars.

The upheaval in Ukraine - where the United States says Russia is backing separatists and the Kremlin accuses Washington of helping protesters to topple a Moscow-friendly president in February, has led to the worst East-West crisis since the 1991 collapse of the Soviet Union.

In addition to the hi-tech sector sanctions, the US has imposed visa bans and assets freezes on officials and lawmakers and targeted companies with links to President Vladimir Putin. The European Union has also imposed sanctions.

The Russian Foreign Ministry said earlier on Tuesday that the latest EU measures were an "exhausted, trite approach" that would only deepen discord and hamper efforts to defuse the crisis in Ukraine.

RELATED:

Russia charges Nasa astronauts $70m per seat
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Old 16-08-14, 14:19   #26
 
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Default re: VIDEOs-New Russian Cold WAR? >F16 Jet's Near Miss with Russian MiG

Canada Sends Military Supplies to Ukraine

Daily Mail UK, 16 August 2014


TRENTON, Ontario (AP) — Canada says it is sending non-lethal military equipment to Ukraine to help the country protect its eastern border against Russia.

Defense Minister Rob Nicholson said Thursday that Canada will deliver helmets, ballistic eyewear, protective vests, first aid kits, tents and sleeping bags to Ukrainian troops.

Russia has massed thousands of troops on the border, and NATO pledges to provide Ukraine with assistance. Pro-Russian rebels in eastern Ukraine have fought the government for months.

Canada's announcement follows sanctions and travel bans by Ottawa against several top Russian politicians and groups with ties to President Vladimir Putin's government. Moscow responded with a ban on Canadian food imports for a year.

Ukraine and Western countries have accused Moscow of backing the separatists with weapons and soldiers, a claim the Russian government has denied.
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Old 19-10-14, 17:42   #27
 
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Red Arrow PhOtOs-Nato/UK Intercept Russian Jets/Ships+Sweden Searches for Russian Sub

Sweden Steps up Search for 'Crippled Russian Submarine' Making Mayday Distress Call off its Coast

  • Swedish ships, helicopters and troops are scouring waters off Stockholm
  • Follows reports a Russian submarine ran into difficulties on secret mission
  • Sources say a distress signal in Russian was intercepted
  • Soviet submarine sightings caused security alerts in Sweden in the 1980s
  • The Russian defence ministry denied the reports today
Daily Mail UK, 19 October 2014


Sweden has beefed up its military presence amid reports of 'a crippled Russian submarine' off its coast.
In a throw back to the Cold War, Swedish ships, helicopters and troops are scouring the waters off Stockholm following reports that a Russian submarine might have had mechanical problems while on a secret mission in the archipelago.
The operation began after Sweden's ministry said it was given a reliable tip-off about 'foreign underwater activity' off the country's coast in the Baltic Sea.

Scroll down for videos




Swedish ships, helicopters and troops are scouring the waters off Stockholm for what was officially described as 'foreign underwater activity'



The Svenska Dagbladet newspaper said Sweden had begun a search after a distress signal in Russian was detected on an emergency frequency


The Svenska Dagbladet newspaper said Sweden had begun a search after a distress signal in Russian was detected on an emergency frequency on Thursday evening.
Encrypted radio traffic from a point in the Stockholm archipelago and Kaliningrad was picked up later as well.
Another signal was intercepted on Friday night and Swedish intelligence was able to pinpoint the locations of the participants. One was in the waters off Stockholm, while the other could be traced to Kaliningrad, the port that is the home of Russia's Baltic Sea fleet.

Defence analysts cited in other reports speculated that a submarine might have been replacing old spy equipment or monitoring a Swedish naval exercise.
Captain Jonas Wikström said: 'We consider the information we received as very trustworthy. I, as head of operations, have therefore decided to increase the number of units in the area.'
Russia's military intervention in Ukraine this year has fuelled suspicion about its intentions towards other neighbouring states, notably in the Baltic.
It has several submarines based in Kaliningrad, a Russian enclave bordered by Poland and Lithuania and facing out to Sweden, as well as a much bigger force near Murmansk on the Kola Peninsula.
Last month, another Swedish newspaper, Expressen, reported an incursion by two Russian SU-24 fighter bombers into national airspace. Sweden scrambled jets to see them off, it said.


Sweden continues hunt for 'foreign underwater activity':






Swedish navy fast-attack vessels are engaged in a military operation in the Stockholm Archipelago




Swedish corvette HMS Visby patrols the Stockholm Archipelago searching for what the military says is a foreign threat in the waters



Swedish minesweeper HMS Koster searching for what the military says is a foreign threat in its waters



The submarine hunt is an early political test for Stefan Löfven, the new prime minister, whose centre-left minority government took office this month


In September two Russian Su-24 attack jets reportedly violated Swedish airspace over the Baltic, prompting Sweden's air force to scramble its own fighters.
Soviet submarine sightings caused security alerts in Sweden, which is not a member of Nato, in the 1980s.
The most famous incident took place in 1981 when a Soviet submarine hit rocks near Karlskrona, the main Swedish naval base, in the south of the country.
The Russian captain claimed that the submarine had strayed off course and got lost.
The submarine hunt is an early political test for Stefan Löfven, the new prime minister, whose centre-left minority government took office this month.
But Russia defence ministry denied reports that one of its submarines got into trouble off Sweden.
A spokesman said: 'Russia's submarines, like the surface ships, have been following their tasks in the world's oceans according to the plan.
'There have not been any emergencies or accidents with the Russian military vessels.

Sweden Continues Hunt for 'Foreign Underwater Activity':





RELATED:


U.S. spy plane was forced to veer into Swedish airspace after Russia scrambled fighter jets one day...


Spy Scandal.NSA LEAKS: Sweden Key Partner for U.S. Spying on RUSSIA.

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Old 23-10-14, 14:24   #28
 
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Red Arrow PhOtOs-Nato Jets Intercepts Russian Jets

NATO Intercepts Russian jets over Baltic Sea - As Sweden Continues to Search for Russian Submarine

23 October 2014

HELSINKI (AP)

NATO scrambled fighter jets twice in two days to intercept Russian military aircraft over the Baltic Sea, it said Tuesday amid reports that Russian military activity in the region is increasing.

Lt. Col. Robert Gericke said the Russian aircraft were flying in international airspace and had not violated the territory of alliance members.

Two Canadian F-18 Hornet jets were scrambled from the Siauliai Air Base in Lithuania on Monday to intercept a Russian Ilyushin-20 surveillance aircraft, which they shadowed for some 15 minutes, NATO said.



A pilot climbs from a Canadian Air Force F-18 Hornet at Siauliai Air Base in Lithuania Monday Oct. 20, 2014 . Two Canadian F-18 Hornet jets were scrambled from the Siauliai Air Base in Lithuania on Monday to intercept a Russian Ilyushin-20 surveillance aircraft, which they shadowed for some 15 minutes, NATO said. (AP Photo/Canadian Air Force, Cpl Gabrielle DesRochers)


"Once identification was successful, the intercept mission was completed and the two Hornets returned to their base," a NATO statement said.
Earlier, the Latvian military tweeted that NATO F-16 jets were dispatched on Tuesday to intercept a Russian Ilyushin-20 surveillance aircraft over the Baltic Sea. Gericke confirmed that NATO jets had also intercepted a Russian aircraft that day, but could not immediately provide more details.
NATO, which has 16 fighter jets in the region monitoring Baltic airspace, said it regularly launches jets to identify "unknown or potentially hostile aircraft" in the proximity of national airspace.

There were two similar incidents in the region on Oct. 7 and Sept. 11, but on neither occasion did the Russian aircraft constitute a threat to NATO forces, the alliance said.

In the past five days, the Swedish Navy has been combing the Stockholm archipelago for signs of a foreign submarine that officials suspect entered its territorial waters illegally. It hasn't officially linked Russia to the suspected intrusion.


The Finnish military says that Russian military aircraft have violated the small Nordic country's airspace five times this year, and the Environment Institute said Russian military ships had twice intercepted one of its research vessels in international waters.


On Sept. 5 an Estonian security service officer was detained on the Russian border — Estonia and Russia disagree on which side of it — and is still in custody in Moscow.




A member of the ground crew installs the protection pin onto a Canadian Air Force F-18 Hornet's missile at Siauliai Air Base in Lithuania Monday Oct. 20, 2014 . Two Canadian F-18 Hornet jets were scrambled from the Siauliai Air Base in Lithuania on Monday to intercept a Russian Ilyushin-20 surveillance aircraft, which they shadowed for some 15 minutes, NATO said. (AP Photo/Canadian Air Force, Cpl Gabrielle DesRochers)


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Old 23-10-14, 17:55   #29
 
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Default re: PhOtOs-Nato/UK Intercept Russian Jets/Ships+Sweden Searches for Russian Sub

RELATED Previous Report:

British Royal Navy Frigate Intercepts Russian Vessel in the Baltic After Warship Strays Close to Nato-Protected Waters

  • HMS Montrose was taking part in an exercise off the Danish coast
  • The Type 23 frigate investigated an unidentified ship picked up on radar
  • Russian warship RFS Soobrazitelny was carrying out routine manoeuvres
  • Show of strength demonstrated Nato's resolve to protect its 28 members
  • It's the latest in a series of encounters between British and Russian forces

HMS Montrose, a Type 23 frigate, was taking part in a multinational exercise off the Danish coast when she was dispatched to investigate an unidentified surface ship picked up on radar.


Despite choppy seas and 30 knot winds, the crew identified the unknown ship as the 104-metre-long Steregushchiy-class frigate RFS Soobrazitelny skirting Danish waters as it sailed west in the Baltic Sea.




Dispatched: HMS Montrose, a Type 23 frigate, was taking part in a multinational exercise off the Danish coast when she was sent to investigate an unidentified surface ship picked up on radar




Identified: The 104metre-long Steregushchiy-class frigate RFS Soobrazitelny, a Russian warship, appeared to be carrying out routine manoeuvres in international waters


As HMS Montrose closed with the Russian vessel, a Russian Ilyushin IL-20 ‘Coot’ maritime patrol aircraft was detected and appeared overhead, circling the two ships.


It was one of the Royal Navy’s most significant encounters with Russian warships in the region since the Ukraine crisis began.
Navy chiefs said the show of strength demonstrated Nato’s resolve to protect its 28 members against any threat from the Kremlin.

Both the Russian vessel and aircraft appeared to be carrying out routine manoeuvres in international waters.

Commander James Parkin, commanding officer of HMS Montrose, said: ‘All our interaction so far has been professional, and effective, and we have gained huge benefit from working so closely with our allies in such a busy and challenging environment.’

Lieutenant Chloe Lea, HMS Montrose’s watch officer, said: ‘We picked up a vessel on our radar that was not showing any of the normal behaviour expected of merchant vessels or allied warships.




International waters: The encounter took place in the Baltic Sea. The incident was the latest in a series of encounters between British and Russian forces




Monitoring: As HMS Montrose closed with the Russian vessel, a Russian Ilyushin IL-20 'Coot' maritime patrol aircraft (pictured), was detected and appeared overhead, circling the two ships


'We have seen the Russians operate a lot in this area but this is the closest we have seen them.’

Plymouth-based HMS Montrose, which has 205 crew and is armed with Sting Ray torpedoes, Sea Wolf missiles and Harpoon missiles, is taking part in the US-led exercise involving warships, submarines and helicopters from 14 different nations.

Last week’s incident was the latest in a series of encounters between British and Russian forces.


Quote:
WARSHIPS: BRITISH HMS MONTROSE

Base: Plymouth

Crew members on board: 205

Weapons and missiles: Armed with Sting Ray torpedoes, Sea Wolf missiles and Harpoon missiles

Length: 133 metres

Top speed: 28 knots


Quote:
RUSSIAN RFS SOOBRAZITELNY

Base: St Petersburg

Crew members on board: 98

Weapons and missiles: A combination of missile systems including Kh-35 missiles, 3M-54 Klub missiles and anti-torpedo missiles

Length: 104 metres

Top speed: 27 knots



Earlier this month two RAF fighters shadowed seven menacing Russian warplanes that flew too close to Baltic airspace.

The fully-armed Typhoons from 3 (Fighter) Squadron were scrambled after unidentified aircraft were detected by Nato air defences in international airspace. All were subsequently identified as Russian.

Four Typhoons were deployed to the region in April under orders to respond forcefully to any violation of the airspace of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania which do not have their own air defence fighters and rely upon Nato.
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Old 27-10-14, 01:46   #30
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Red Arrow Russia Begins Large-Scale Militarization of the Arctic

Russia Begins Large-Scale Militarization of the Arctic




Consortium of Defense Analysts
Threats to U.S. Security




A new frontier is becoming a center of great power rivalry

It is the Arctic, believed to have vast untapped natural resources and increasingly is at the center of disputes between the United States, Russia, Canada, Norway and Denmark in recent years, as rising temperatures lead to a reduction in sea ice, opening up access to lucrative offshore oil and gas deposits.





Ed Adamczyk reports for UPI, Oct. 21, 2014, that Russia has begun a large-scale militarization of the Arctic Ocean region, after recent discoveries of oil and natural gas reserves under the ocean floor, as well as the possibility that a potential Northern Sea Route — an alternative to the Suez Canal — could soon be established as global climate change causes melting of Arctic ice.
The Russian news agency RIA reports that Russia is planning to build a military command structure in the Arctic by 2017. Former Soviet bases are being reactivated; a 6,000-soldier permanent military force will be established in northwest Russia’s Murmansk region, with radar and guidance systems.
Col. Oleg Salyukov said, “For the defense of national interests in the Arctic, a multiservice task force will be formed. A motorized rifle arctic brigade is now being formed in the Murmansk region. The second arctic brigade will be formed in 2016 and will be stationed in the Yamal-Nenets autonomous region,” a reference to the Arctic Circle area east of the Ural Mountains.”
Russian marines and paratroopers have already passed survival tests in the Arctic Circle. A month ago during Russia’s “Vostok 2014″ military exercises in the Far East — the biggest ever post-Soviet drills — combat missions in the Arctic were simulated, including a landing on Vrangel Island in the Arctic, the first of its kind in the area.
100,000 servicemen, up to 1,500 tanks, 120 aircraft, 5,000 pieces of weaponry, military and special hardware, and up to 70 ships took part in the exercises. Virtually the whole Russian Pacific Fleet was out at sea performing various tasks: protection of the coastline from seaborne assault, anti-submarine and anti-sabotage training, as well as mine-laying operations.




While the oil and gas reserves in Arctic are claimed by some to represent 17% to 30% of the world’s total, some are skeptical of Russia’s plans. Military analyst Alexander Golts of the Russian news website Yezhenedelny Zhurnal said, “It is consistent with the stance of the Russian state, which only understands the word ‘force’ in military terms. But you must keep it in proportion; it is still only a symbolic battle. Take a look at the map and you will soon see that 6,000 men spread over such a huge area is not much.”
The Arctic area is governed by international maritime treaties. Canada, which also has extensive territory in the region, routinely conducts military exercises there.
Nearly two months ago on Aug. 29, 2014, as reported by Reuters, President Vladimir Putin had already signaled Russia’s military and economic plans for the Arctic. He told a youth camp outside Moscow that Russia must strengthen its position, economically and militarily, in the resource rich Arctic region, where other countries are vying for influence: “Our interests are concentrated in the Arctic. And of course we should pay more attention to issues of development of the Arctic and the strengthening of our position (there).”
Back in December 2013, as reported by RIA Novosti (via Global Security), Russia’s Ulan-Ude aircraft manufacturing plant said it was developing a variant of the famed Mi-8 transport helicopter for use by the military in harsh Arctic climate.
Sergei Solomin, the plant’s chief engineer, said the modified Mi-8 will feature a more powerful engine, an auxiliary electric generator, an ice-protection system and ski landing gear for landing on soft snow and swamps. The helicopter’s heating system will be based on technologies used on spacecraft.
Russia has officially set a goal of deploying a combined arms force by 2020 to protect its political and economic interests in the Arctic, including military, border and coastguard units.
According to the Russian military, two Arctic brigades will be deployed in Russia’s extreme north over the next few years. Russia also plans to return to mothballed Soviet-era Arctic airfields and establish a permanent naval presence along the strategically important Northern Sea Route.
According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA):
The Arctic holds an estimated 13% (90 billion barrels) of the world’s undiscovered conventional oil resources and 30% of its undiscovered conventional natural gas resources, according to an assessment conducted by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). Consideration of these resources as commercially viable is relatively recent despite the size of the Arctic’s resources due to the difficulty and cost in developing Arctic oil and natural gas deposits.
Studies on the economics of onshore oil and natural gas projects in Arctic Alaska estimate costs to develop reserves in the region can be 50-100% more than similar projects undertaken in Texas. [...]
Overlapping and disputed claims of economic sovereignty between neighboring jurisdictions also could be an obstacle to developing Arctic resources. The area north of the Arctic Circle is apportioned among eight countries—Canada, Denmark (Greenland), Finland, Iceland, Norway, Russia, Sweden, and the United States. Under current international practice, countries have exclusive rights to seabed resources up to 200 miles beyond their coast, an area called an Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ). Beyond the EEZ, assessments of “natural prolongation” of the continental shelf may influence countries’ seabed boundaries.

http://www.thecommonsenseshow.com/2014/10/25/russia-begins-large-scale-militarization-of-the-arctic/
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Old 12-11-14, 22:04   #31
 
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Default re: VIDEOs-New Russian Cold WAR? >F16 Jet's Near Miss with Russian MiG

Russia Plans Long-Range Bomber Flights Near N.American Waters


By Reuters, 12 November 2014

MOSCOW, Nov 12 (Reuters) - Russia said on Wednesday it planned to send long-range bombers on flight patrols over North American waters, including the Gulf of Mexico, but the Pentagon played down Moscow's mission as routine training in international airspace.

The announcement by Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu came just days after NATO singled out some Russian incursions into European airspace, including more complex formations of aircraft flying more "provocative" routes.



Shoigu said flights along the border of the Russian Federation and over the Arctic Ocean were foreseen as part of training for long-range operations, according to state agency Itar Tass.

"In the current situation, we need to secure our military presence in the western part of the Atlantic, eastern part of the Pacific oceans and the waters of the Caribbean and Gulf of Mexico," he added.

At the Pentagon, spokesman Colonel Steve Warren said every nation had the right to operate in international waters and international airspace.

"The Russians have patrolled in the Gulf (of Mexico) in the past, and we've seen the Russian Navy operate in the Gulf of Mexico. These are international waters," Warren said.

"It's important that the Russians conduct their operations safely and in accordance with international standards."


Relations between Moscow and the West have plummeted over the crisis in Ukraine, where Kiev faces a rebellion by pro-Russian separatists in the east of the country.

Bomber patrol flights, a Cold War-era practice, were cut back after the fall of the Soviet Union but President Vladimir Putin revived them in 2007.


RELATED:

Fears of Fresh Fighting in Ukraine as Russian Tanks, Heavy Weapons and Combat Troops are Spotted Crossing the Border, says Top NATO Commander

  • General Philip Breedlove said NATO officials saw force crossing border
  • Claimed Russian tanks, artillery and air defense systems entered Ukraine
  • Russian Defense Ministry quickly rejected his statement as 'groundless'
  • News comes amid concerns of re-escalation of fighting in east Ukraine
  • UN Security Council held emergency session on situation this afternoon
By AP, 12 November 2014


A large column of Russian tanks, heavy weapons and combat troops entered eastern Ukraine earlier this week, NATO's top commander claimed today, prompting fears of an re-escalation in the seven month old conflict.
U.S. General Philip Breedlove said his officials witnessed the force cross over the 'completely wide-open' border between the countries at some point in the last two days.



The Russian Defense Ministry quickly rejected Breedlove's statement as groundless and continues to deny that its troops have entered eastern Ukraine to help pro-Russian separatists fighting against forces loyal to the Kiev-based government.

The news comes the U.N. Security Council held an emergency session today on Ukraine amid worries about a renewal of the full-scale conflict in the rebel-held east.






Force: An armored personnel carrier belonging to pro-Russian separatists travels on a main road through rebel-territory near the east Ukrainian village of Torez this morning


Speaking in the Bulgarian capital Sofia, General Breedlove said:

'We have seen columns of Russian equipment, primarily Russian tanks, Russian artillery, Russian air defense systems and Russian combat troops entering into Ukraine.'



He wouldn't say how many fresh troops and weapons have moved into Ukraine and wouldn't specify how the alliance obtained the information, but added that the force was spotted in the last two days.
The Russian Defense Ministry quickly rejected Breedlove's statement as groundless.

The West and Ukraine have continuously accused Moscow of fueling a pro-Russian insurgency in eastern Ukraine with troops and weapons - the claims Russia has rejected.





Claims: U.S. General Philip Breedlove (pictured left in Sofia with Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borisov today) said his officials witnessed the force cross the 'completely wide-open' border in the last two days





A column of tanks drive from a rebel-territory to Donetsk near the town of Shakhtarsk in eastern Ukraine


The news comes as UN officials with the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe called an emergency session on Ukraine amid concerns of a re-escalation of fighting.



The main city in the eastern Ukraine, Donetsk, has seen its heaviest shelling in recent weeks despite a cease-fire signed two months ago between Ukraine and Russia-backed separatists.
The cease-fire called on September 5 has been violated almost daily.

The Security Council has met well over a dozen times on Ukraine since the crisis began early this year, but little action can be taken as permanent member Russia has veto power.


'Russian tanks' seen cruising through Donetsk in Ukraine...








Military: Pro-Russian gunmen patrol the centre of Donetsk in eastern Ukraine earlier this morning


This morning heavy artillery fire rocked Donetsk - the rebel-held industrial city that represents a de facto capital for pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine. It was unclear whether the fire came from the government forces besieging the city, or from rebel resistance troops.

There were also reports of heavy clashes in the outskirts of the rebel-held city of Luhansk, where separatists fired on a government posititon near the village of Schastya.

More than 4,000 people have died since government forces moved in April to put down an armed insurrection by the rebels in the two regions, which border Russia.

Kiev says it is redeploying forces in eastern Ukraine to prepare for a possible new rebel offensive.


Russia Denies NATO Accusations over Troops in Ukraine


MOSCOW, Nov 12 (Reuters) - Russia denied accusations by NATO on Wednesday that it has sent tanks and troops to eastern Ukraine in the past few days.
NATO's top military commander Philip Breedlove said in Bulgaria the alliance had spotted military equipment arriving from Russia in regions of east Ukraine that are held by pro-Russian separatist rebels.

General-Major Igor Konashenkov, a Russian Defence Ministry official, dismissed the comments as anti-Russian "hot air" and said "there was and is no evidence" behind the NATO accusations......

"We have already stopped paying attention to unsubstantiated statements by NATO's Supreme Allied Commander Europe, General Philip Breedlove, on Russian military convoys he 'observed' allegedly invading Ukraine," Konashenkov said.

The West has imposed sanctions on Russia over the crisis in Ukraine, saying Moscow has provided the rebels with arms and reinforced them with troops since they rose up a month Russia annexed the Crimea peninsula from Ukraine in March.

Breedlove said in Bulgaria that NATO had seen "Russian equipment, primarily Russian tanks, Russian artillery, Russian air defence systems and Russian combat troops entering into Ukraine" in recent days.
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Old 03-12-14, 16:10   #32
 
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European Union VIDEO-Norwegian F16 Jet's Near Miss with Russian MiG

Too Close for Comfort: Norwegian Fighter Jet Captures the Hair-Raising Moment he Nearly Collided Mid-Air with a Russian MiG

  • Video shows Russian jet flashing into view just 65ft from Norwegian plane
  • Norwegian F-16 pilot shouts 'what the hell?!' before veering sharply away
  • Near miss adds to mounting tensions between NATO states and Moscow
  • NATO reported 400 intercepts of Russian jets this year - up 50% on 2013
Daily Mail UK, 3 December 2014


Dramatic footage has emerged showing a Norwegian air force pilot being forced into an emergency manoeuvre to avoid a mid-air crash with a Russian fighter jet.

In the video, released by Norway's military, one of its pilots shouts 'What the hell?!' before veering away sharply as the Russian MiG-31 flashes into view, just 65 feet from the F-16.


'The Russian pilot's behaviour was not quite normal,' said Norwegian armed forces spokesman Brynjar Stordal about the 26-second film clip released on Sunday.

Scroll down for video






Near miss: Footage released by the Norwegian military shows one of its fighter pilots being forced to swerve out of the way of a Russian MiG jet (bottom right) which flashes into view just 65 feet from the F-16






Evasive action: The Norwegian pilot shouts 'What the hell?!' before veering away sharply in the latest incident involving hundreds of other recent near misses with aggressive Russian fighter pilots




Norwegian fighter pilot's close encounter with Russian MiG





The incident has added to mounting tensions between Russia and NATO member states in recent months, underlined by claims of other recent near misses with Russian military jets.

'We don't know if it was a miscalculation or if he deliberately put himself in the path of our F-16,' said Stordal, adding that Norway's armed forces had informed Russia that the incident was 'undesirable'.


The close encounter occurred in international airspace 'north of Norway' but the armed forces did not say when.

Unlike neighbouring non-aligned Sweden, Norway - a NATO member - has not reported any airspace incursions by Russia in recent years and gauges the level of Russian air force activity in the area as 'pretty normal or a little more' than usual.





A Russian MiG fighter plane like the one involved in the near miss with the Norwegian air force jet






Long-standing threat: A picture taken by the Royal Norwegian Airforce in July 2007 shows a Russian strategic bomber Tupolev Tu-95MS being escorted by a Norwegian F-16 while flying in international air space






In the video, released by Norway's military, one of its pilots shouts 'What the hell?!' before veering away sharply as the Russian MiG-31 flashes into view, just 65 feet from the Norwegian F-16. File picture



So far this year, Norway has scrambled its air force 43 times to identify 69 Russian planes, compared to 41 incidents involving 58 planes in 2013.
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said last month that the alliance had reported 400 intercepts of Russian military flights so far this year - a 50 per cent increase compared to 2013.

He complained that Russian jets flying without sharing their flight plans posed a danger to commercial air traffic.


U.S. Ambassador to NATO Douglas Lute also revealed 'multiple incidents' where Russian military aircraft had not filed flight plans nor spoken to civilian air traffic controllers and had turned off transponders that send information about the plane.







'Danger to air traffic': NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg (above) said last month that the alliance had reported 400 intercepts of Russian military flights so far this year - a 50 per cent increase compared to 2013




This made the planes virtually invisible to air traffic controllers, he told a news conference.

'These Russian actions are irresponsible, pose a threat to civilian aviation and demonstrate that Russia is flagrantly violating international norms,' he said.

Britain also voiced concern about Russian probing of its air space.

In late October, NATO said its aircraft tracked Russian strategic bombers over the Atlantic and Black Sea and sorties of fighters over the Baltic.

At sea, too, Russia has been more active, leading one NATO commander to draw comparisons with Cold War behaviour.


A squadron of Russian warships entered the English Channel on Friday.


Norwegian F16 Fighter Pilot's Close Encounter with Russian MiG

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Old 31-01-15, 13:19   #33
 
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Default re: PhOtOs-WATCHING Russia-PUTIN READY FOR WAR >Europe Prepares

OIL COLLAPSE: Putin to Go Nuclear on U.S. Sanctions?

The Financial Armageddon

In these videos, Christopher Greene of AMTV explains why Putin will go nuclear in response to U.S. sanctions.


Putin to Go Nuclear on U.S. Sanctions?



The Real Reason the U.S. is Targeting Russia




World Nuclear Stockpile Report


***For Full Reports, Click: ... World Nuclear Stockpile Report

.
Attached Images
File Type: png World Nuclear Stockpile Report.PNG (19.5 KB, 48 views)
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Update re: PhOtOs-WATCHING Russia-PUTIN READY FOR WAR >Europe Prepares




BREAKING NEWS: Typhoon Fighter Jets Scrambled to Intercept Two Russian Bear Bombers Off the Coast of Cornwall, UK

  • Two Russian Bear bombers seen in skies off south west coast of England
  • RAF fighter jets scrambled to intercept and escort them away, RAF says
  • Comes the day after UK Defence Secretary warned of Russian aggression
  • Earlier this week, a Russian warship had to be escorted through Channel
  • Video emerges filmed from Russian bomber showing escort by Nato planes
Daily Mail UK, 19 Feb 2015


RAF Typhoon fighters were scrambled to escort two Russian Bear bombers spotted in international airspace off the coast of Cornwall, the Ministry of Defence has said.

It is the latest in a series of military manoeuvres by Russian forces around the UK as relations between Vladimir Putin's regime and the West continue to sour.


An MoD spokesman said:

'RAF Quick Reaction Alert Typhoon fighter aircraft were launched yesterday after Russian aircraft were identified flying close to UK airspace.'

Scroll Down for Videos





The RAF scrambled two Typhoon fighters to escort two Russian Bear bombers over the UK. File photo







The approach by Russian bombers came the day after Defence Secretary Michael Fallon (top) said the regime of Vladimir Putin is as big a threat to Britain as Islamic State


The spokesman added:

'The Russian planes were escorted by the RAF until they were out of the UK area of interest. At no time did the Russian military aircraft cross into UK sovereign airspace.'

The move came on the day Defence Secretary Michael Fallon said that Nato is getting ready to fight back against Russian aggression as it poses a 'real and present danger' to the Baltic States.


He told of the threat to Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia as Vladimir Putin continues to 'test us' by deploying submarines and warplanes near British territory.

It comes after a similar approach by two identical Russian planes last month off the coast of Bournemouth.


Experts said then that the manoeuvre could have been designed to ‘probe the RAF speed of reaction’ – raising fears that the Russians were looking for weaknesses in the British fighter force.


Russia is said to have stepped up military manoeuvres as Britain joins the chorus of international condemnation of Vladimir Putin's support and alleged arming of rebels in Ukraine.





Footage, apparently shot from a Russian bomber and showing Nato jets, emerged on Russian TV last night






The footage - which shows how close British and other Nato fighters get to the Russian planes - is not believed to be from yesterday's incident but one of the many similar interceptions in recent months





During the similar incident last month, the Typhoons were so close to the Russian planes – roughly 1,000ft away – that they could signal to the pilots.



Earlier this week, a Russian warship was intercepted by the Royal Navy as it strayed close to the UK while passing through the English Channel.

The vessel – equipped with missiles, anti-aircraft guns and torpedoes – was monitored and escorted by a heavily-armed British frigate, HMS Argyll.

Britain summoned the Russian ambassador for a dressing down after long-range bombers flew over the Channel close to UK airspace last month, disrupting civil aviation and prompting Britain, like today, to scramble two Typhoon jets.

Fears have been raised that a Russian military plane could crash with an airliner after a near-miss in the skies over a Sweden last year when a spy-plane switched off its transponders, making it invisible to commercial radar.

More than 100 Russian aircraft were intercepted last year, three times more than during the whole of 2013.






It comes after the Royal Navy's HMS Argyll had to shadow the Russian warship Yaroslav Mudryy this week




A Royal Air Force Typhoon FGR4 flying over Lithuania 2014:





NATO Aircraft Surround Russian Missile



Previous Intercept-World War 3 : NATO intercepts 4 groups of Russian Nuclear Bombers over Europe (Oct 31, 2014)

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Old 24-09-16, 03:21   #35
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Breaking News Russia Pulls Out its Portable ICBM Launchers

Things are getting really serious folks.....

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Old 08-10-16, 15:12   #36
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Default Russia Launches No Fly Zone - Threatens War With US

Russia Launches No Fly Zone - Threatens War With US


Make no mistake about it, Canada will be drawn into this also......sad, very sad.
Trumps remarks of 10 yrs. ago are the least of our worries......


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I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people -- for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4
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Old 10-10-16, 00:08   #37
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Default re: PhOtOs-WATCHING Russia-PUTIN READY FOR WAR >Europe Prepares

Russia deploys nuclear-capable missiles in Kaliningrad




Russia has deployed nuclear-capable Iskander missiles in its western-most region, Kaliningrad, which borders on Nato members Poland and Lithuania.

Poland said the development was of the "highest concern", adding it was monitoring the situation.


Russia's defence ministry said the new deployment was part of military exercises and had happened before.


The US and Nato have seen disagreements with Russia intensify in recent times, particularly over Syria and Ukraine.


Kaliningrad is a Russian enclave sandwiched between Poland and Lithuania.


Are Russia's military advances a problem for Nato?


Nato and Russia - in search of dialogue


The Iskander system has a range of up to 700km (440 miles) and could reach the German capital, Berlin.


Polish Defence Minister Antoni Macierewicz called Russia's activities "very alarming".


And a US intelligence official told Reuters the move could be to express displeasure at Nato. Nato is boosting its eastern flank by deploying four battalions in Poland, Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia next year.
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-37597075
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Old 14-10-16, 15:56   #38
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Default re: PhOtOs-WATCHING Russia-PUTIN READY FOR WAR >Europe Prepares

What Main Stream Media (MSM) want dare tell US citizens......

Israeli News Live
Published on Oct 14, 2016

Russians are warning that The US Obama administration push in the Middle East is clearly a New World Order Agenda. Something Putin has vowed to fight against. Now Russian Television is warning their citizens of possible Nuclear conflict with the West. Russian leaders are hoping the Trump will be elected thinking this could avoid global conflict.

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Old 17-10-16, 11:47   #39
 
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Update re: PhOtOs-WATCHING Russia-PUTIN READY FOR WAR >Europe Prepares

'Posturing' Russians to Send Aircraft Carrier and Fleet Along the English Channel





HMS Dragon (foreground), a Type 45 Royal Navy destroyer, escorting the Admiral Kuznetsov in the English Channel in July 2016 Credit: EPA



Defence Correspondent, The Telegraph UK, 17 October 2016


Russia is expected to sail its only aircraft carrier through the English Channel later this month amid strained relations between London and Moscow over the Syria crisis.


Royal Navy chiefs and their Nato allies are drawing up plans to escort up to eight Russian warships which are due to leave port imminently to join the country’s air strike campaign against Syrian rebels.

Admirals believe the Kremlin will use the voyage as an opportunity for a show of strength as it passes Britain, and expect the carrier’s aircraft to launch flying drills off the British and French coasts.

The Royal Naval preparations come after Boris Johnson, the Foreign Secretary, this week triggered a diplomatic row by saying he would “like to see demonstrations outside the Russian embassy” in London over Moscow’s role in the ongoing Syrian conflict.

A former First Sea Lord on Friday said Russian posturing risked inflaming tensions further.

Nato navies have been preparing a major operation to track the 55,000 tonne Admiral Kuznetsov and its escorts in a game of “naval cat and mouse” down through the North Atlantic to the Bay of Biscay and then into the Mediterranean.

One Nato naval source said the Russian vessels were due to leave Severomorsk near Murmansk imminently and could pass Britain as early as next week.

The source said:

“It’s not catching us by surprise, we are working up what to do and we are all over it. The most likely thing is that they will go through the North Sea, down the Dover Strait and through the Channel.
“They might even stop off the North East coast to fly for a bit.”

But the source said it was also possible the Russian warships would split, with some going through the Irish Sea or down the West coast of Ireland, “to cause more trouble”.
The source said:

“Even if it splits five ways and we can’t man mark them, it doesn’t matter, we have got this covered.”


Quote:

FAQ | Russian strikes in Syria



Why is Russia bombing Syria?


Russia says the strikes are to defeat Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isil). But most of their first strikes have been against non-Isil groups who are opposed to President Assad’s regime.


Why would Russia bomb non-Isil groups?


Russia’s spokespeople are sometimes vague - referring to Isil and terrorists in the same breath. By “terrorists” they mean the same as President Bashar al-Assad - anyone part of the armed opposition. The gravest threat to the regime’s core areas comes from non-Isil rebels.


What is Russia’s position on President Assad?


President Putin says he believes the survival of the Assad regime is very important. This is why it make sense for Russia to target non-Isil groups first.


Are the non-Isil groups being bombed actually terrorists?


Some of them are. The spectrum of opposition groups ranges from "moderate” brigades, backed by the US, to an alliance called Jaish al-Fatah - Army of Conquest - made up of hardline groups.

The Jaish al-Fatah group includes Jabhat al-Nusra, aligned with al-Qaeda, so they are formally designated by the United Nations as terrorists.

One Royal Navy Type 23 frigate and one Type 45 destroyer are being prepared to monitor the Russians, while an RAF Rivet Joint spy plane, C130 Hercules and Typhoon jets will also be on standby.

But sources said, with the Royal Navy short of ships and sailors, the warships would have to be diverted from other missions to meet the Russian vessels.

Sergei Shoigu, Russian defence minister, has said the carrier will be escorted by six warships and three or four support vessels. The Russian vessels are expected to include the battlecruiser Peter the Great and a Udaloy class destroyer.

Once in the Mediterranean, the Kuznetsov is set to take up position off the coast of Syria for four to five months, where it could uses its complement of MiG-29K/KUB jets and helicopters to carry out airstrikes.

Lord West of Spithead, a former First Sea Lord, said the Russians were entitled to sail down the Channel, and the ageing carrier was not fully operational, but he said the country’s posturing over Syria would risk inflaming tensions.
He said:

“When people start posturing, things become dangerous. It all raises tensions and makes things more difficult and that’s not a clever thing to do.
“It makes sense to have them monitored by a couple of Nato ships. The fact that the Navy is scrabbling around for a frigate is symptomatic of the fact that it’s a national disgrace we only have 19 surface escorts.
He said:

“I find Russia very worrying at the moment. Their economy is on a war footing.”



Dr Igor Sutyagin, a Russia expert at the Royal United Services Institute, said that as the country’s economy foundered it was left only with its military might to project influence.
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Old 17-10-16, 14:20   #40
 
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Update re: PhOtOs-WATCHING Russia-PUTIN READY FOR WAR >Europe Prepares

The Russians are Coming - Royal Navy on Standby as Aircraft Carrier and Warships Sail Towards English Waters

Aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov is set to sail through the English Channel before docking off the coast of Syria where it could be used for further airstrikes on Syrian rebels


Daily Mirror UK, 17 October 2016


Russia is expected to sail its only aircraft carrier through the English Channel amid rising tensions between London and Moscow over the Syrian crisis.


The Royal Navy and their Nato allies are preparing for Admiral Kuznetsov and its escorts to sail through British waters before joining the country's airstrike campaign against Syrian rebels.

The potentially inflammatory situation has been described as a “naval cat and mouse” as officials race to track the 55,000 tonne warship.



A naval chief has accused Russia of using the voyage to show its strength and posturing over war-torn Syria.

The Kuznetsov is expected to sail through the North Atlantic to the Bay of Biscay and into the Mediterranean before docking off the coast of Syria for four to five months where it could uses its MiG-29K/KUB jets and helicopters to carry out airstrikes.

Lord West of Spithead, a former First Sea Lord, said the Russians risked inflaming tensions further by posturing over Syria.

He told the Telegraph:

“When people start posturing, things become dangerous. It all raises tensions and makes things more difficult and that’s not a clever thing to do.

“It makes sense to have them monitored by a couple of Nato ships. The fact that the Navy is scrabbling around for a frigate is symptomatic of the fact that it’s a national disgrace we only have 19 surface escorts.

“I find Russia very worrying at the moment. Their economy is on a war footing.”





Russian Ships Expected




"Admiral Kuznetsov" Heavy Aircraft Carrying Cruiser






Antisubmarine Ship




Heavy Missile Cruiser


PLUS, intelligence-gathering vessels are expected...



British Royal Navy Escort




The Royal Navy's Type 42 destroyer steams alongside Russian aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov





HMS Daring is one of The Royal Navy's £6 billion fleet of Type 45 destroyers





The situation has been described as a “naval cat and mouse”


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Old 21-10-16, 08:23   #41
 
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Update re: PhOtOs-WATCHING Russia-PUTIN READY FOR WAR >Europe Prepares

Putin Says the West Can 'Screw Themselves' Over The Threat of More Russian Sanctions

  • Vladimir Putin has hit out at western powers for the threat of sanctions
  • Russian president says they do nothing and are only to suppress power
  • Adds Russia will not ease retaliation measures saying West can 'get lost'
  • Putin was speaking at a summit in India between five countries of emerging economies
Daily Mail UK, 20 October 2016


Vladimir Putin says Western powers can 'screw themselves' over the threat of more sanctions against Russia.
Putin had been attending a summit in Goa, India, of BRICS nations, where they discussed emerging economies.


However, during an interview with journalists he said that the West could 'get lost' and that sanctions would not solve anything but supress Russia's power.





Vladimir Putin, who says Western powers can 'screw themselves' over the threat of more sanctions against Russia



He told RT: 'Regarding sanctions against Russia, whatever they are said to be linked to, be it events in Ukraine or Syria, I assure you, the aims of those who formulate such a policy [of restrictions] do not solve any concrete problem.'

Putin also added that the Kremlin has no plans to ease it retaliatory measures of boycotting Western food imports. He later said: 'No way, the can get lost.'

His comments came as he talked to journalists on a range of other topics including the United States and the upcoming election.
He said that America had ramped up international problems in a bid to distract voters there from domestic problems.
He explained that 'creating an enemy' was a common tactic to distract voters.









Putin also added that the Kremlin has no plans to ease it retaliatory measures of boycotting Western food imports


Putin added:

'Iran and the Iranian nuclear threat did not work well for that purpose.
'Russia is a more interesting story. In my opinion, this card is being played now.'

However, he stopped short of saying who he was backing in the election although did say he appreciated Donald Trump for his 'calls for co-operation'.

Putin explained:

'Mrs Clinton chose her aggressive rhetoric and aggressive stance with regard to Russia, and Mr Trump, on the contrary, is calling for cooperation, at least against terrorism.”
'We will certainly welcome anyone who wants to work with us.'

Putin attended the BRICS summit along with the leaders of Brazil, India, China and South Africa.





Putin attended the BRICS summit along with the leaders of Brazil, India, China and South Africa. Pictured are Brazil's president Michel Temer, Putin, Indian PM Narendra Modi, Chinese President Xi Jinping and South Africa's President Jacob Zuma


BRICS was formed in 2011 with the aim of using its growing economic and political influence to challenge Western hegemony.

The nations, with a joint estimated GDP of $16 trillion, set up their own bank in parallel to the Washington-based International Monetary Fund and World Bank and hold summits rivalling the G7 forum.


But the countries, accounting for 53 per cent of world population, have been hit by falling global demand and lower commodity prices, while several have also been mired in corruption scandals.
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Update re: PhOtOs-WATCHING Russia-PUTIN READY FOR WAR >Europe Prepares

Russia's Attack Fleet Arrives at Dover as Putin's Warships Enter The English Channel TODAY on Their Way to Launch Strikes in Syria

  • The Admiral Kuznetsov is approaching the Dover Strait on its way to start attacking jihadis in Syria
  • Several support ships of the Russian fleet, including an ocean going tug have been seen in the channel
  • The Royal Navy and Nato allies have keeping the Russian carrier fleet under close observation
  • Putin has recalled two corvettes from the Mediterranean to divide the Royal Navy's response to his fleet
  • Russians have mocked Royal Navy as 'weak' and claimed Britain 'overreacted' by deploying warships
Daily Mail UK, 21 October 2016


A Russian aircraft carrier fleet has arrived in Dover UK.

The Admiral Kuznetsov and its nuclear-powered missile cruiser Peter the Great entered the North Sea yesterday and have been steaming south overnight.


The Ministry of Defence confirmed this morning that the Russian fleet, which is being shadowed by the Royal Navy and several Nato allies, will pass within a few miles of Dover this morning, on the 211th anniversary of the Battle of Trafalgar.

Vladimir Putin has ordered the Kuznetsov, which is a relic of the Cold War, to deploy to the eastern Mediterranean to bomb opponents of his ally Syrian president Bashar al-Assad.

Russian defence officials have sent the world's largest ocean going tug, the Nikolay Chiker, to sail with the fleet in case the diesel-powered aircraft carrier breaks down.






The Russian fleet, including the guided missile battle cruiser Peter the Great, is passing Dover this morning, pictured having steamed through the night on their way to Syria





People have been gathering around Dover since the early hours of the morning to catch a glimpse of the Russian fleet





The Russian battle fleet has been tracked by the Royal Navy, RAF and Nato allies since it entered the North Sea yesterday





Russian pilots conducted flight operations from the deck of the Admiral Kuznetsov carrier, pictured belching smoke, with the nuclear-powered Peter the Great guided missile cruiser shadowing in the background on their way to Dover





Royal Navy's HMS Duncan (centre) is seen here observing a Russian Kirov Class Battle cruiser (left) and Russian aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov







The HMS Richmond has reported the Russian fleet is heading south towards the Dover strait while several NATO vessels are being deployed to keep the flotilla under surveillance. Meanwhile Vladimir Putin has recalled two corvettes from the Mediterranean to divide the Royal Navy's response to his aircraft carrier provocatively sailing down the British coastline





As well as the Royal Navy, the Royal Norwegian Navy, Finnish Navy and Royal Netherlands Navy have vessels in the area



HMS Duncan - the world's most advanced air-defence destroyer – joined the HMS Richmond yesterday to intercept the eight-strong Russian fleet.

As well as the Royal Navy, the Royal Norwegian Navy, Finnish Navy and Royal Netherlands Navy have vessels surrounding the North Sea.



Despite this response, one Moscow defence expert claimed Vladimir Putin is ready to 'seize control' of the Mediterranean and the Atlantic as he boasted about Russia's sea power while branding the Royal Navy 'tiny'.

Pyotr Klintsevich, first deputy of Russian senate's Defence and Security Committee, confirmed the eight-strong flotilla was armed and ready for combat.

'We understand that such ships are armed, and that they did not just go for a walk with a walking stick,' he said.
'The fact that today the military ships, including a first-class vessel, go forward - it's part of combat training tasks.'
He added: 'The Admiral Kuznetsov and Pyotr Velikiy are able to solve any task anywhere on the planet's waters.'

The fleet has completed training its pilots for bombing missions while it has been tracked by the Royal Navy's HMS Richmond and several NATO vessels.

Broadcasters have also brazenly claimed that the presence of the Russian fleet has 'scared' the Royal Navy.

A report on TV Zvezda, run by the Vladimir Putin's Defence Ministry, boasted: 'NATO got scared by Russian ships moving towards Syria.'
Vladimir Mukhin, who writes for Nezavisimaya Gazeta, headlined his column: 'Admiral Kuznetsov scared the English'.

Putin's admirals are keen to ramp up the pressure on Britain's warships by calling in extra assets from the Mediterranean in a mission dubbed 'Operation Sea Fist' by the Russian media.

A MOD spokesman said: 'It is pretty unambiguous that they have set a course to pass through the Dover Strait.'





Belgian frigate Leopold I has just joined the tracking operation with the Admiral Kuznetsov belching smoke in the background





The Russian fleet needs to certify its pilots, pictured yesterday flying a pair of SU-33 Flankers, for operating from the Admiral Kuznetsov around the clock before the carrier can begin strike missions against Bashar al-Assad's opponents in Syria





The Russians have be flying operations with their Kamov KA-27 helicopters which can be used in anti-submarine warfare




The Russians are trying to divide the Royal Navy's efforts to track their fleet by recalling two corvettes from the Mediterranean, forcing the HMS Dragon to head south from Portsmouth to intercept.

It is understood there is also a Dutch submarine operating south of the English Channel.

Prime Minister Theresa May condemned the Russian decision to deploy the aircraft carrier.

Speaking upon her arrival in Brussels at her first EU summit since becoming Prime Minister, she said:

'We must show that robust and united European stance in the face of Russian aggression.
'The UK has put Russian actions in Syria on the agenda for this summit - we must continue to work together and it's vital that we work together to continue to put pressure on Russia to stop its appalling atrocities, its sickening atrocities in Syria.'

Russian media crowed about the strength of their fleet. Military expert Alexander Khrolenko said:

'While the North Atlantic bloc is stalling in the sands of the Middle East, the Russian Navy seizes control over the Atlantic, not to mention the Mediterranean and Black Seas.'
He added: 'They [NATO] have no equal in the Mediterranean.'





The KNM Fritdjtof Nansen of the Norwegian navy is part of NATO's response to monitor the Russian fleet





The Norwegian Air Force shadowed the Admiral Kuznetsov heading south earlier this week on their way to Syria




Quote:

IS THE FLAGSHIP OF PUTIN'S FLEET A FLOATING CROCK? AIRCRAFT CARRIER HEADING FOR DOVER NEED MAJOR REPAIRS AND CAN'T HIT TOP SPEED



Britain is on high alert as Russia's aircraft carrier the Admiral Kuznetsov passes Dover in a blatant show of strength by Valdimir Putin.
But back in Moscow, the vessel, launched 31 years ago in the Soviet era, is seen as 'the most problematic ship in the Navy'.


After this voyage it is set for major repairs because it cannot hit top speed - leading to serious limitation for the aircraft.

A recent report on the state of the ship highlighted 'violations of discipline' among a crew that rarely go to sea, but emphasised:

'The main problem of the Kuznetsov remains in its power plant.
'It is kept running only with the help of 'cannibalism' - when the necessary parts are taken from 956 class ships which use similar equipment,' said the report on Lenta.ru.

Far from being an icon of Putin's power, Russian observers see the ageing the vessel as a symbol of the lack of naval planning since the end of Soviet times.

'Numerous repairs in 1994-95, 1996-98, 2001-04 and 2008 could not improve the situation, mainly due to lack of financial investment,' one report stated.

The aircraft carriers chequered history is highlighted by the fact it has changed names four times.





Admiral Kuznetsov, which is leading Russia's fleet, is in desperate need of repairs, pictured previously in the repair dock





The vessel, launched 31 years ago in the Soviet era, is seen as 'the most problematic ship in the Navy'


Peter Roberts, senior research fellow for sea power and maritime studies at the Royal United Services Institute said the Russians were planning to use international waters when passing the English Channel so cannot be challenged.
He said:

'It's a clear and military signal that Russia is back on the international stage. They are off to conduct a mission. They are off to conduct it off Syria. They are very focused on their mission.'

There have been warnings issued to civilian aircrew, such as helicopter pilots supplying North Sea oil rigs of 'intense naval military flying' off Scotland's east coast.

A Norwegian navy frigate has also been following the Russian flotilla, which is being kept under close watch by a P-3 Orion.

Two further British warships are also currently steaming up the east coast to intercept the Russian fleet after the Kremlin boasted they are 'seizing control' of the Mediterranean.

Type-45 destroyer HMS Duncan – the world's most advanced air-defence destroyer – sailed from Portsmouth last night to join frigate HMS Richmond, which has intercepted the Kuznetsov task group of eight ships.

The HMS Richmond has taken up station a few hundreds yards from the task force. It will remain as an escort while the Russians remain in an area of UK national interest.

It is understood that the Belgian naval frigate Leopold I has also started trailing the flotilla as part of Nato Maritime Group One.





The Nato Maritime Group One has also been tasked with tracking the Russian fleet as it passes the English Channel





The Kamov KA-27 helicopters can be used for troop transport as well as anti-submarine warfare operations





The KA-27s flew close to the NATO vessels monitoring the Russian fleet as it approached the Scottish coast


According to the Ministry of Defence:

'Shadowing ships is regular business for the UK Royal Navy, supported on this occasion by Royal Air Force surveillance aircraft.
'They will continue to escort the Russian Task Group and provide a visible presence south through the North Sea and English Channel as the ships conduct their passage and carries out flying operations.'

It marks a further breakdown of relations between the two countries after after Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson became embroiled in a row with the Russian embassy last week.

According to a Nato spokesman the fleet's destination does not 'inspire confidence' that the nation is seeking a political solution to the Syrian conflict.
The official said:

'Russia has the right to operate in international waters. There are plans in place for Nato navies to monitor the Russian ships as they head for the Mediterranean.
'At the same time, the deployment of the carrier group to the eastern Mediterranean does not inspire confidence that Russia is working towards a political solution to the conflict in Syria.'





The Russian fleet is expected to refuel in the Moray Firth before continuing on to the eastern Mediterranean





The Admiral Kuznetsov is part of a flotilla of eight surface ships which is also been tracked by Russian submarines





The Admiral Kuznetsov, pictured centre, is unusual for a modern warship for the trail of black smoke it leaves behind


Mr Johnson called on people to demonstrate outside Russia's London embassy last week in protest against Russia's bombing campaign in the Syrian city of Aleppo.
But Moscow responded by branding his call for protests 'shameful' and accused him of 'Russophobic hysteria'.

Britain's mobilisation of the aircraft carrier fleet off the coast of Scotland is the latest in an increasing presence of international naval assets in the area.
After completing training it is understood the aircraft carrier fleet will head to an anchorage on the Moray Firth where it will be refuelled before continuing to the Mediterranean.





Type-45 destroyer HMS Duncan – the world's most advanced air-defence destroyer – sailed from Portsmouth last night to join frigate HMS Richmond, which has intercepted the Kuznetsov task group of eight ships





A Royal Navy seaman onboard the HMS Richmond keeps watch on the Russian carrier fleet as it conducts training flight operations off the coast of the Shetland Islands





The Russians are being shadowed by the HMS Richmond, with the Admiral Kuznetsov, belching smoke, in the background



Naval assets from Norway, Sweden, Finland and the Netherlands are all believed to be on standby.
As well as the Royal Navy, the Royal Norwegian Navy, Finnish Navy and Royal Netherlands Navy have vessels surrounding the North Sea.



Nato aircraft are also patrolling the area, with tanker aircraft on station ready to refuel any fighter jets tasked with observing the Russian fleet.

The United States has sent another of its Arleigh Burke class guided missile destroyers into the Mediterranean in advance of the Russian fleet's arrival.
The USS Carney was refueled in Spain according to the US Sixth Fleet and will join the Nato forces in the eastern Mediterranean.
The USS Ross is already in the region providing support for the French aircraft carrier the Charles De Gaulle.







The USS Carney, pictured, departed Naval station Rota in Spain this morning in advance of the arrival of the Russian fleet



In addition the RAF Quick Reaction Alert squadrons in RAF Lossiemouth in north east Scotland and RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire have been ordered to remain on standby in case they need to intercept any Russian jets straying into UK air space.

The Admiral Kuznetsov is protected by a battle cruiser and a pair of large anti-submarine ships.
It is also protected from below the surface by an attack submarine.






The aircraft carrier is supported by the nuclear-powered battleship Pyotr Velikiy, (Peter the Great) pictured on Monday passing the Norwegian coast by a Lockheed P3-Orion surveillance aircraft





The Russians have also sent a submarine, pictured, to protect the aircraft carrier fleet






The Kuznetsov has undergone an extensive refit since its last deployment to the Mediterranean in 2014 when it had to be followed by several tugs in case its steam turbine engines packed up.


Earlier this week the Norwegian navy followed the heavily-armed fleet as it sailed south from Severomorsk, near Murmansk in the Barents Sea.
According to the Ministry of Defence, the Russian fleet is being kept under close observation by the Royal Navy and the RAF.

A source told MailOnline:

'The Admiral Kuznetsov is currently conducting flight operations. The pilots need to be certified for carrier take-offs and landings at day and night before it takes up station in the Mediterranean.'

A Royal Navy spokesman said the size of the Russian naval force was 'unusual' but that the Russian ships were 'behaving very well', including booking areas for flying and calling up coastguard stations.
'The special part of this is definitely the aircraft carrier.

'If you just wanted to keep it safe, you put a destroyer and a frigate with it. If you wanted to show a bit of muscle, you do what they're doing now.'
But he added: 'I wouldn't say this is the full might of their fleet'.






The French Navy has the nuclear powered aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle in the Mediterranean already conducting combat operations against ISIS targets in Syria





The Charles De Gaulle is been protected by the guided missile destroyer USS Ross, pictured here in the Combat Information Centre where its Tomahawk cruise missiles are controlled



'They are free to do this in international waters, but once they are in the English Channel, the aircraft will be grounded.'


The MOD confirmed the Royal Navy would shadow the carrier and its fleet while it remains in the UK's area of interest.

Also, RAF Typhoons and Tornadoes are on red alert at airbases in Lossiemouth in North East Scotland and Coningsby in Lincolnshire in case any Russian jets stray into UK airspace
The fleet could possibly route around Ireland's west coast to avoid the English Channel, although there is far greater shelter avoiding the Atlantic Ocean.

However, after going through the Bay of Biscay and down the Portuguese coast, the fleet will pass through the nine mile wide Gibraltar straits before reaching its area of operation.
It is understood the fleet will resupply before continuing to the Mediterranean.

The Admiral Kuznetsov is the Russian flagship and the country's only aircraft carrier.

The French already have the Charles De Gaulle operating in the eastern Mediterranean.

Major Elisabeth Eikeland, spokeswoman for the Norwegian Army's National Joint Headquarters said:

'We have been informed that they are en route to the Mediterranean. It's not every day that so many ships sail together off Norway.'

According to the Russian Ministry of Defence, the aircraft carrier taskforce departed on Saturday to the Mediterranean.
A spokesman said:

'The group consists of the aircraft-carrying heavy cruiser Admiral Kuznetsov, the Pyotr Velikiy battlecruiser, large anti-submarine ships Severomorsk and Vice-Admiral Kulakov and support vessels.'

The Russian MOD claimed:

'Special focus will be made on safeguarding security of maritime traffic and other types of maritime economic activity of Russia and also on responding to the new kinds of modern threats such as piracy and international terrorism.'

The Admiral Kuznetsov had previously operated in the Mediterranean early in 2014.
The Kuznetsov is main attacking threat is the Sukhoi SU-33 Flanker D aircraft. The supersonic jets can carry up to 6.5 tonnes of bombs and missiles on 12 external hardpoints.

However, the lack of a catapult system on the Kuznetsov means the aircraft cannot take off with a full weapons or fuel load and safely make it into the air.

The SU-33 is a specially adapted version of the SU-27 - which is the Russian version of the F-15.
It has been fitted with a specially adapted undercarriage, and aerodynamic package to help it cope with operating off of a flight deck.
Also the aircraft's wings are able to fold, meaning they can store more jets on the aircraft carrier.



Quote:

PUTIN IS GETTING READY FOR WAR: EX-KGB SPY BELIEVES CONFLICT IS 'INEVITABLE'



Vladimir Putin is readying for war, warns one of his former Russian KGB comrades.

Former Soviet secret services boss Gennady Gudkov told MailOnline said:

'If anyone still does not understand which direction the situation in Russia is heading, I can tell you. The country is being prepared for a military conflict.'



Colonel Gudkov, 60, said:

'There are lots of signs of militarization in Russia.
'A bloated military and defence budget, quick rearmament of the army, almost monthly army exercises and tests of the newest samples of dreadful hardware.'






Ready for War? Former KGB chief Gennady Gudkov, 60, claims Vladimir Putin is preparing for conflict by bloating the military and defence budget


Gudkov said Putin is working behind the scenes in readiness for conflict, adding:

'There are active renovations in bomb proof shelters, purchase of gas masks and defence kits for civilians, along with a massive mobilisation in many places.
'Military (naval) activities in the Middle East, in the Black and Mediterranean seas, plans to resume and enhance military bases aboard.

'Growing military propaganda, spy madness and the search for internal enemies - all are typical of a pre-war situation.
'Laws have been adopted that allow the use of military force abroad, and hide information about losses.'

Comparing the mood to the Stalin era ahead of the Second World War which initially saw the USSR in a pact with Hitler before ensuring his eastern flank defeat, he warned:

'The country went through the same things in the 1930s.
'And the results are known, too.'






Putin, pictured with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, is working behind the scenes in preparation for war by renovating bomb proof shelters and purchasing gas masks and defence kits for civilians, added Gudkov


Gudkov, an MP until he was forced out by the Kremlin in 2012, claims that last month's parliamentary elections, comfortably won by former KGB spy Putin's allies against a weak and emasculated opposition, signalled a transition in Moscow.

'It is entirely clear that the country has switched from authoritarian to totalitarian,' he said.

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Update re: PhOtOs-WATCHING Russia-New SUPERTANKs Threat >PUTIN Prepping for WAR?

UK's MI5 Head:
> ‘Increasingly Aggressive’ Russia >>> a Growing Threat to UK


Guardian UK. Posted 7 November 2016.

Exclusive: In first newspaper interview given by a serving spy chief, Andrew Parker talks of terror, espionage and balance between secrecy and privacy






Andrew Parker said Russia was ‘using its whole range of state organs and powers to push its foreign policy abroad in increasingly aggressive ways’. Photograph: Jeff Overs/BBC/PA



Russia poses an increasing threat to the stability of the UK and is using all the sophisticated tools at its disposal to achieve its aims, the director general of MI5 has told the Guardian.

In the first newspaper interview given by an incumbent MI5 chief in the service’s 107-year history, Andrew Parker said that at a time when much of the focus was on Islamic extremism, covert action from other countries was a growing danger. Most prominent was Russia


“It is using its whole range of state organs and powers to push its foreign policy abroad in increasingly aggressive ways – involving propaganda, espionage, subversion and cyber-attacks. Russia is at work across Europe and in the UK today. It is MI5’s job to get in the way of that.”

Parker said Russia still had plenty of intelligence officers on the ground in the UK, but what was different now from the days of the cold war was the advent of cyberwarfare. Russian targets include military secrets, industrial projects, economic information and government and foreign policy.

Parker said he was talking to the Guardian rather than any other newspaper despite the publication of the Snowden files and a consistent scepticism about the need for extra powers for the security services.

“We recognise that in a changing world we have to change too. We have a responsibility to talk about our work and explain it,” he said.

The spy chief also:

• Said that 12 jihadi terror plots had been foiled by the security services in the past three years.

• Identified the size of the homegrown problem: there are about 3,000 “violent Islamic extremists in the UK, mostly British”.

• Said that budget increases would see MI5 expand from 4,000 to 5,000 officers over the next five years.

• Rejected criticism that the investigatory powers bill, due before parliament this week, was going too far in enabling intrusive surveillance, arguing that it correctly balances privacy and security.

• Dismissed claims that Brexit would affect cooperation with European intelligence services.

• Said his aim was to equalise the gender balance in MI5 and recruit many more operatives from ethnic minority backgrounds.



“Russia increasingly seems to define itself by opposition to the west and seems to act accordingly,” said Parker. “You can see that on the ground with Russia’s activities in Ukraine and Syria. But there is high-volume activity out of sight with the cyber-threat. Russia has been a covert threat for decades. What’s different these days is that there are more and more methods available.”

Relations between the west and Russia have deteriorated since the annexation of Crimea from Ukraine and with Russia’s bombing of rebel-held positions in Aleppo in support of the Syrian president, Bashar al-Assad. Russia, in what was interpreted as a signal to the west, sent a formidable naval detachment through the UK Channel recently.

Parker said the Islamic extremist threat was also enduring and generational. He broke it down into three segments: a large homegrown problem of potentially violent extremists in the UK – most of them British – about 3,000 in number; members of Daesh (Islamic State) in the conflict zones of Syria and Iraq trying to incite terror plots against the UK; and Daesh trying to spread its “toxic ideology” and promote terrorism online.

Critics of the controversial investigatory powers bill, which went before the House of Lords on Monday, say it will offer the security services access to personal data, bringing a reality to bulk surveillance. Parker said the data was necessary in the fight against terror and he thought the government had reached the right balance between privacy and security.

A recent ruling by the investigatory powers tribunal concluded that UK security agencies had been unlawfully collecting bulk data – which may have included medical and tax records – for 17 years from 1998, in contravention of article 8 of the European convention on human rights. Asked if this vindicated Edward Snowden’s 2013 revelations about mass surveillance, Parker replied: “It absolutely does not.”

Parker was strongly critical at the time of Snowden – and of the Guardian for publishing the revelations. He said : “I spoke out at the time about the damage that was done to the work of British and allied intelligence agencies, about having so much about how we operate revealed to our adversaries. Secrecy is not something we need for its own sake.”

Before the interview, Parker was the surprise guest speaker at the Royal Society’s annual conference on diversity. He told the audience that the agency had practical reasons for needing to reflect the diversity of UK society.

“We have to approach, cultivate and recruit people to be agents, to work for us. That does not work so well if everybody looks like me.”

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Update re: PhOtOs-WATCHING Russia-New SUPERTANKs Threat >PUTIN Prepping for WAR?

UK Military Intelligence Issues Warning over Russian Supertank Threat





An Armata tank in Red Square for the May Day parade this year Credit: KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP/Getty Images

Guardian UK, 7 November 2016



British military intelligence has issued a warning over a ground-breaking tank being developed by Russia, according to a leaked document seen by The Telegraph.

The Ministry of Defence internal briefing paper raises doubts over the UK’s ability to combat the threat posed by the Kremlin’s new Armata tank.

It also questions why the Government has no plans for a rival tank for at least 20 years.


Quote:

"Without hyperbole, Armata represents the most revolutionary step change in tank design in the last half century."


Military Intelligence Report


The internal document, written by a senior Army intelligence officer, states: “Without hyperbole, Armata represents the most revolutionary step change in tank design in the last half century.”
It adds:

“Unsurprisingly, the tank has caused a sensation,” and it goes on to question the failure of current defence strategy to plan for a new tank that can compete.

There is growing alarm among military chiefs that a presidential victory for Donald Trump, who has criticised US funding of Nato, could leave the West badly exposed to Vladimir Putin’s aggression, especially in the vulnerable Baltic states.







Credit: Sasha Mordovets/Getty Images


A prototype of the Armata was rolled out last year at the annual May Day parade in Moscow, prompting the commissioning of the five-page intelligence report. The tank is pioneering, according to the document, because of a revolutionary turret design that makes crew less vulnerable under fire.
The tank is also reckoned to be lighter, faster and lower in profile than Western rivals.

The document also suggests the tank will be kitted out with a radar system currently used on state-of-the-art Russian fighter jets and new composite armour. It has a “reported higher muzzle velocity” gun and the possibility of an upgraded missile system.

“As a complete package, Armata certainly deserves its billing as the most revolutionary tank in a generation,” concludes the intelligence briefing paper.
“For the first time, a fully automated, digitised, unmanned turret has been incorporated into a main battle tank. And for the first time a tank crew is embedded within an armoured capsule in the hull front.”


Quote:

"Are we on the cusp of a new technological arms race? Has an understandable focus on defeating the single threat of IEDs distracted Western military vehicle designers?"


Military Intelligence Report


The Army intelligence officer says UK defence strategy has concentrated on the threat from improvised explosive devices deployed by insurgents in Iraq and Afghanistan and ignored the danger posed by tanks.
The paper asks:

“Are we on the cusp of a new technological arms race? Has an understandable focus on defeating the single threat of IEDs distracted Western military vehicle designers? Challenger 2 [the British tank], with life extension programmes, is currently due to remain in service until 2035. Is it time to rethink?”

The paper also raises concern over the Scout, a light armoured fighting vehicle due to be introduced for British forces from next year.

“In a familiar story of measure and countermeasure, the intelligence assumptions that informed the procurement of Scout as a superior battle-winning platform may now be open to question.”







The document says that on top of the Armata tank, Russia is adding “six additional armoured vehicles to the stable”, including a heavy infantry fighting vehicle and a self-propelled artillery system.


The intelligence report, which it stresses should “not be interpreted as an official MoD statement”, also raises the spectre of far superior Russian tank numbers, with plans to build 120 Armata tanks a year from 2018.

It points out Russia already has a fleet of 2,500 tanks with a reserve of 12,500, which is “35 times the size of the fleet in the British Army”.
“With such numbers, decisive effect is credibly achievable and losses are less important,” says the document.

The conclusions will ring alarm bells, not least following Russia’s annexation of the Crimea and the threat to the Baltic states.



Analysis for Western military leaders has suggested Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania – all Nato member states – would be overrun by Russian tanks within 60 hours of an invasion.

Brigadier Ben Barry, a land warfare specialist at the International Institute for Strategic Studies, said two features on the Armata would threaten Nato forces.

“Firstly, it is the first tank designed with an unmanned turret. This will potentially improve crew survivability,” he said. “The turret also looks to have the stretch potential to accommodate a larger-calibre gun of up to 150mm. If fielded, this would overmatch the guns and armour on existing Nato tanks.
“Secondly, it appears to be the first tank designed from the outset with an active protection system, to intercept incoming anti-tank guided missiles and shoulder-launched anti-tank weapons.”

He added: “This has the potential to greatly reduce the firepower of Nato infantry. Of course, there are few Armata yet, and it is not clear how rapidly they will enter service. But as they do, they will increase the effectiveness of Russian armoured forces.”

The Russian defence ministry announced in September that it had signed a contract for the delivery of the first 100 Armata tanks. Another 2,200 are expected to follow.


By contrast, the British Army has 227 Challenger 2 main battle tanks, dating from 1998. Germany has 410 Leopard 2 tanks, and France has 200 Leclerc tanks. America has 2,338 M1 Abrams main battle tanks – although just 250 tanks and armoured fighting vehicles are stationed in Eastern Europe.




Vladimir Putin



The Ukrainian government estimates that Russian-backed separatists in their country have 700 tanks.

Lord West of Spithead, a former First Sea Lord, said he was “very concerned” about Russian rearmament. “At the moment, their economy is a war economy,” he said. “They have got the GDP of Italy and they are trying to spend the same on defence as America. What they are doing is unsupportable and when something is unsupportable, then anything could happen.”


Fears over Russia’s tank programme have intensified over the prospect of a Trump win in Tuesday’s US election.






Donald Trump Credit: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images


Mr Trump has threatened to abandon a core tenet of Nato – that an attack on one member is an attack on all under article 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty – over his belief that Washington is shouldering too much of the financial burden for the military alliance.

General Sir Richard Shirreff, the former deputy supreme allied Commander Europe, said:

“Here we are days from the election and that’s a real, real threat – Trump saying he might not commit to article 5.
“The defence of Europe during the Cold War depended on total certainty that whichever president was in the Oval Office, of whatever party, [the US] would come to Europe’s defence.”
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Hot re: Russia Warns RAF of Dangerous Interceptions & HMS Warship to Keep its Distance

It's a BAREcraft Carrier! UK's New £3.1bn Warship Dubbed Big Lizzie Heads to the North Sea for Six Weeks of Testing with Empty Decks and NO Planes to Transport

Russia Calls Britain's New Aircraft Carrier 'a Convenient Target'
  • Replicas of the F-35 Lightning II jets were delivered to RNAS Culdroe so crews can practise pushing them
  • Despite their convincing appearances the models at the Cornwall base lack engines, sensors or weapons
  • But naval personnel will get used to moving bigger, heavier aircraft than they ever have done before
  • HMS Queen Elizabeth - Britain's biggest-ever warship - was deployed in Firth, Scotland, earlier this week
Daily Mail UK/AP, 29 June 2017


The £3.1billion HMS Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier was today
photographed making its way to the North Sea - with no planes on board.
Instead, life-size models of the F-35 Lightning II jets will be pushed around tarmac at Cornwall's RNAS Culdrose so flight deck teams can get a feel for the world's most advanced warplanes.

The real jets will be deployed on the 65,000-tonne vessel - named 'Big Lizzie' - which was put into the sea for the first time in Scotland on Monday.





Aerial photographs show the huge vessel heading out to sea without any planes on board which has resulted in the Navy practising flight-deck drills on land



Real jets will be deployed on the 65,000-tonne HMS Queen Elizabeth (pictured) which has been dubbed 'Big Lizzie'



On Monday, HMS Queen Elizabeth (pictured) left Rosyth to commence its first stage sea trials off the coast of Scotland





HMS Queen Elizabeth is seen with HMS Sutherland and HMS Iron Duke. The aircraft carrier proudly hit the waters earlier this week - but currently its crew only has replica planes to practise with


The arrival of the four jets was announced by the Flight Deck School, which will provide training to enable air handlers to manage fast jets and helicopters.

Chief petty officer Paul Ranson, Training Manager for all Embarked Training explained:
'We need to provide as realistic training as possible before the trainees go to sea.
'Aircraft handlers are vital to the new carrier, without them the Royal Navy cannot conduct safe aviation at sea.
'Flight decks are very dangerous, at sea even more so. It's our job to protect the aircraft and aircrew flying them.
'Managing the flight deck is mentally and physically challenging, so the training has to be quite rigorous and as realistic as possible'.




She was delicately guided out of the Rosyth basin in Fife, where she was assembled, by navigators, pilots and tug boats in a three-hour operation







Life-size copies of the F-35 Lightning II jets will be pushed around the tarmac at Cornwall's RNAS Culdrose by HMS Queen Elizabeth crews




The arrival of the four jets was announced by the Flight Deck School, which will provide training to enable air handlers to manage fast jets and helicopters


For the next six weeks, the huge vessel will spend her time in the North Sea and Moray Firth 'proving systems'.
She will finally head to her new home of Portsmouth, Hampshire, later this autumn.

Despite having no engines, sensors or weapons the four replica F-35s, dubbed the 'faux fighters' by the team at Culdrose, will be used as training aids so naval personnel can get used to moving bigger and heavier aircraft.

Paul, who will join HMS Queen Elizabeth as Captain of the Flight Deck, explained that 99 per cent of handlers have never been near an F35-B yet or moved anything nearly that large.
Two of the replicas have opening ****pits to practise rescuing injured pilots in a crash.
Built from fibre-glass by Cornish firm Gate Guards UK are fitted with water tanks to simulate fuel and weapons loads between 16 and 25 tonnes.




HMS Queen Elizabeth (pictured) conducted vital system tests off the coast of Scotland today after she left Rosyth on Monday





The replicas have been dubbed the 'faux fighters' by the team at Culdrose, who will practise wheeling the planes around the tarmac





Despite having no engines, sensors or weapons the four replica F-35s will be used as training aids so naval personnel can get used to moving bigger and heavier aircraft



Quote:

WHAT ARE THE MODEL PLANES MISSING?


Although the replica F35s will be useful for flight deck crews for pushing heavier planes than they are used to they are a far cry from the real thing.
The models are missing key elements that will be central to the actual jets.
  • Weapons
  • Engines
  • Sensors
However, the excess weight of these features will be made up with water, to maintain an accurate weight.

.






The margin for error was so small that HMS Queen Elizabeth's crew had to wait for the right tide in order to squeeze under the Forth Bridge




The huge, 65,000-tonne flagship leaves Rosyth dockyard for the first time as the ship heads out on sea trials






Owner of Gates Guards UK, David Hobson said: 'It is fantastic for a local company in Cornwall to be part of this and to have played a part in helping the new aircraft carrier.'


Naval Airman Lee Gribble from IIIogan said: 'This is the closest that we are going to get to fast jets until we actually work with the real thing.
'I love being an aircraft handler - it's the best branch in the Navy.'
The Ministry of Defence has been contacted for comment.



WAR of WORDS

MOSCOW, 29 June (Reuters) -

The Russian military mocked Britain's new aircraft carrier on Thursday, saying the HMS Queen Elizabeth presented "a large convenient target" and would be wise to keep its distance from Moscow's warships.

The giant vessel, Britain's most advanced and biggest warship, embarked on its maiden voyage on Monday, prompting British Defence Secretary Michael Fallon to say he thought the Russians would look at it "with a little bit of envy."


Stung by that remark and angered by Fallon calling Russia's sole aircraft carrier "dilapidated," the Russian defence ministry issued a strongly-worded statement on Thursday, criticising Fallon and deriding the HMS Queen Elizabeth.

"These rapturous statements ... about the supremacy of the new aircraft carrier's beautiful exterior over the Russian aircraft-carrying cruiser Admiral Kuznetsov exposes Fallon's utter ignorance of naval military science," the ministry said.

"Like a bee, the British aircraft carrier is only capable of independently releasing planes from its belly closely flanked by a swarm of warships, support ships and submarines to protect it. That is why ... the British aircraft carrier is merely a large convenient naval target."


The ageing Admiral Kuznetsov, Russia's only aircraft carrier, and a ship that Fallon has criticised more than once, was by contrast armed with an array of defensive missiles, the ministry said, warning the HMS Queen Elizabeth to keep her distance from the Russian navy.



"It is in the interests of the British Royal Navy not to show off the 'beauty' of its aircraft carrier on the high seas any closer than a few hundred miles from its Russian 'distant relative'," the ministry said.

Fallon offended Russia's military in January when he dubbed Moscow's sole aircraft carrier "a ship of shame" as it passed through waters close to the English coast on its way back from bombing raids in Syria.


Russia said at the time that Britain was staging a show by escorting the ship, the Admiral Kuznetsov, through the English Channel designed to distract attention away from the shortcomings of the British navy.

The Kuznetsov, which entered service in 1991 in the Soviet Union's dying days, is part of Russia's Northern Fleet near Murmansk and is currently awaiting serious repairs.

Russia, striving to promote a more assertive foreign policy amid chilly ties with the West, is in the process of re-arming its army and the navy.

But some experts at home and abroad say the Cold war-era Kuznetsov is now obsolete and that Russia needs a new generation of aircraft carriers.
END

NB; I bet the crew of the British warship are laughing their heads off...

+ Russia has a short memory. They choose to forget that years ago when one of their subs was trapped at the bottom of the ocean and the crew on board were dying from lack of air. They called the UK & the US for help.
The British specialist team got there first with all their equipment. The sub was raised and all crew saved.

Men and their war games eh? LBB ...
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Update Re: Russia Warns RAF of Dangerous Interceptions & HMS Warship to Keep its Distance

Russia Accuses RAF of 'Dangerous' Interceptions Over Black Sea

RAF conducted two interceptions this week

Independent UK, 27 AUG 2018.





RAF typhoons were launched to intercept a Russian maritime patrol aircraft and two suspected Russian fighter aircraft ( EPA/LESZEK SZYMANSKI )



Russia has accused Britain’s Royal Air Force (RAF) of conducting “dangerous” interceptions of its military aircraft over the Black Sea, which it said were designed to provoke Moscow.

The RAF intercepted a Russian maritime patrol aircraft over the Black Sea on Friday and scrambled to intercept two suspected Russian fighter aircraft on Wednesday.

The Russian embassy in London asked: “... what kind of threat to Britain or its allies does a Russian patrol aircraft hypothetically pose while conducting flights off Russia’s own shore, some 1500 miles away from the UK?”

“Instead of strengthening anyone’s security, the British authorities are using such a military presence [in the Black Sea area] for provocative actions. Not just by making verbal statements, regrettable as they are, but also in real military terms, which is simply dangerous.”

Britain’s minister of state for the armed forces, Mark Lancaster, spoke in July about “an ever more assertive” Russia, and said the RAF had been forced to intercept Russian military aircraft more than 80 times over the last decade.

The RAF maintains a presence in the Baltic countries and in Romania to deter potential Russian military action after Moscow’s annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea in 2014.

Three countries bordering the Black Sea – Romania, Bulgaria and Turkey – are Nato allies of Britain.

Moscow says its activity in the Black Sea region is routine and compliant with international law.

Relations between London and Moscow have dipped to a post-Cold War low after the nerve agent poisoning of former Russian double agent, Sergei Skripal, and his daughter, Yulia, in Salisbury.

London holds Moscow responsible for the attack, which Russia has denied


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