November 30, 2018

Today's issue:
- #KerchStrait: Russian aggression against Ukraine in the Black Sea, martial law;
- Oshchadbank won the case against Russia to recover 1,3 billion USD over lost Crimean assets, Russia refuses to pay;
- anticorruption court news;
- attacks on activists

Russian Aggression Against Ukraine

On Sunday, November 25, 2018, Russia committed an armed attack and captured three Ukrainian boats which were executing a planned sail from Odesa to Mariupol, in compliance with provisions of all existing multi- and bilateral international treaties and the navigation rules. 24 Ukrainian servicemen were illegally detained, six of them were injured. They were under 'trial' in the Russian-occupied Crimea.

Ukrainian servicemen show courage. Ukrainian Military Portal reports that senior Lieutenant Roman Mokryak, Commander of the Artillery Boat "Berdyansk", refused to answer the questions of Russian FSB staff and "confess" to videos of crimes committed by him.
Unian reports that commander of a captured tugboat "Yany Kapu" Oleh Melnychuk demanded a translator into Russian when the so-called "court" in Russian-occupied Crimea was selecting a preventive measure for him. "I don't understand Russian", he said. 
As of November 30, all servicemen are still captured and brought to Moscow.  

EuromaidanPress' analysis of who has the right to do what in the Azov Sea. 

CEPA's Edward Lucas says: With Azov escalation, Moscow tests West's response. 

How to Put Putin in His Place explains Mike Carpenter for the Atlantic Council. 

In addition, Ukraine's economy is also harmed: Russia imposed blockade on two ports - Mariupol and Berdiansk. As of late November 28, according to the Ministry of Infrastructure 35 vessels were prevented from carrying out their operations in the Sea of Azov.
More details

We call on Western governments to impose more targeted sanctions on Russia for its aggression against Ukraine and increase presence in the Sea of Azov and the Black Sea. We urge Western governments to demand that the Russian Federation immediately stop military aggression, release captured Ukrainian servicemen, stop the blockade of the Azov Sea, restore Ukraine’s control over the captured vessels and compensate for all the losses. 

On November 28, martial law came into effect in ten Ukrainian oblasts, bordering Russia, the unrecognized Transnistria and those on the coast of the Black and Azov seas. It was imposed for 30 days.

Also, the MPs approved a resolution on holding Presidential elections on March 31, 2019. 

Oshchadbank won the case against Russia to recover 1,3 billion USD over lost Crimean assets, 
Russia refuses to pay - Kyivpost

On November 26, the International Court of Arbitration in Paris ruled that Russia now has to pay Ukraine 1,3 billion USD plus interest in compensation for the loss of the bank’s assets due to Russia’s illegal actions in Crimea. This is the first victory of a Ukrainian state enterprise in a case against Russia for losses incurred resulting from the occupation of Crimea by Russia.

It came as no surprise, the Russian Federation did not recognize the decision.
More details.

Anticorruption court news
On November 26 members of the Public Council of International Experts arrived and started their work in Ukraine. Number of meetings with the High Qualification Commission of Judges and other stakeholders have been held.

In the meantime, on November 28 the Cabinet of Ministers adopted regulation on financing the work of PCIE members and allocated the premises for the High Anticorruption Court.

Attacks on activists.
Assassination of Kateryna Handziuk
Activists of the movement "Who stands behind the murder of Kateryna Handziuk" remind that 122 days ago Kateryna was attacked with acid, 99 days ago Kyiv journalists managed to achieve release of an innocent man, whom the police tried to make a scapegoat. 25 days ago Kateryna died. 

Attackers and a few organizers of the assassination are detained. Those who stand behind the attacks are still free. 

Moreover, nobody was brought to liability for sabotaging the investigation. Activists claim that 119 days ago police arrested innocent man under the guidance of deputy head of the criminal prosecution department of the Kherson police Sergiy Kurdilov (on the photo circled in red). Kurdilov is a crony and close friend of Sergiy Torbin (real organizer of the assassination, who is already detained), godfather of Torbin's child.

Nevertheless, after Torbin's detention, everybody pretended they know nothing about Kurdilov's links with the arrested. No liability for Kurdilov and his allies for the sabotage followed, not even an internal inspection at the Interior Ministry started. Moreover, Kurdilov was transferred to chair a district police department with the aim to bring him back as soon as everything calms down in Kherson. His bosses were neither brought to accountability. 

Trial against Automaidan activists

On November 29, 2018 the first hearing in the case against three Automaidan activists was not held due to judge having taken a day off. Next hearing is scheduled for March 19, 2019.
Automaidan activists may face four to seven years in prison for throwing eggs at Poroshenko’s Bloc MP Oleh Barna in July 2017.

The case was qualified by the prosecution as battery of a public official. The criminal proceeding intensified right after December 2017 Automaidan rally which brought several hundreds activists at more than 100 cars to protest in front of Lutsenko’s house. More details
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