Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)
June 2021 - Ukraine Special Weapons News
- Putin: HMS Defender Incident in Black Sea is a Complex Provocation Plotted by UK and US Sputnik 30 Jun 2021 -- During the 23 June incident, a Russian warship and a Su-24M jet fired warning shots near HMS Defender, which proceeded to ignore orders to leave Russian territorial waters immediately.
- Britain, Russia Still At Odds Over Warship Incident In Black Sea RFE/RL 30 Jun 2021 -- Britain and Russia have once again clashed over an incident last week in the Black Sea as a British warship passed by Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula, which Russia seized in 2014.
- Ukrainian Lawmakers OK Bills On Reforms Requested By Western Donors RFE/RL 29 Jun 2021 -- Ukraine's parliament, the Verkhovna Rada, has approved several draft laws aimed at reforming the judiciary and curbing corruption as Kyiv seeks to secure more loans from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) under a $5 billion financing program approved last year.
- Russian Jets Flew by Dutch Ship at Safe Distance in Black Sea to Prevent Border Violation - Video Sputnik 29 Jun 2021 -- The incident apparently happened the day after a Russian warship and fighter jet were forced to fire warning shots in order to drive the Royal Navy's HMS Defender from Russia's territorial waters near the Crimean Peninsula after the British vessel ignored calls to leave.
- Russia Checking S-400 Systems in Crimea Amid NATO's Sea Breeze Drills Sputnik 29 Jun 2021 -- Russia has carried out target detection training to test the readiness of its S-400 air defence systems deployed in Crimea against the backdrop of NATO's Sea Breeze drills in the Black Sea, spokesman for the Black Sea Fleet Capt. 2nd Rank Alexei Rulyov said on Tuesday.
- China Says 'No Conditions Attached' After It Is Accused Of Vaccine Threat To Ukraine Over Uyghur Rights RFE/RL 26 Jun 2021 -- China responded angrily on June 26 to accusations that Beijing pressured Ukraine into withdrawing its support for greater scrutiny of Chinese actions in Xinjiang by threatening to withhold COVID-19 vaccine shipments.
- U.S. Sentences Ukrainian Member Of Cybercrime Gang To Seven Years In Prison RFE/RL 25 Jun 2021 -- A Ukrainian hacker has been sentenced to seven years in prison for his role in a notorious cybercrime group that stole credit- and debit-card information from millions of people in the United States and other countries.
- Canadian Report Blames Iranian 'Recklessness' For Downing Ukrainian Passenger Jet RFE/RL 25 Jun 2021 -- An official report by Canadian experts says it has found no evidence that the downing of a Ukrainian passenger plane shot down after takeoff from Tehran early last year was "premeditated." Tehran rejected the charge as "baseless and unacceptable."
- High-Level Member of Hacking Group Sentenced to Prison for Scheme that Compromised Tens of Millions of Debit and Credit Cards US Dept. of Justice 24 Jun 2021 -- A Ukrainian national was sentenced today in the Western District of Washington to seven years in prison for his role in the criminal work of the hacking group FIN7. The defendant was also ordered by the court to pay restitution in the amount of $2,500,000.
- British PM Defends Freedom Of Navigation After Black Sea Incident With Russia RFE/RL 24 Jun 2021 -- Prime Minister Boris Johnson has insisted the U.K. Navy was "entirely right" to defend freedom of navigation following an incident with Russia in the Black Sea, while Moscow warned it was prepared to fire on warships entering territorial waters it claims around Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula.
- Ukraine Hits Oligarch Firtash, Dozens Of Others With Sanctions RFE/RL 24 Jun 2021 -- Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy has imposed sanctions against Dmytro Firtash, a powerful tycoon indicted by the United States for corruption.
- EU Summit To Discuss Strategy For Relations With Russia, Kyiv Warns On Meeting Proposal RFE/RL 24 Jun 2021 -- European Union leaders are gathering in Brussels on June 24 for a two-day summit during which they will discuss a new strategy to manage relations with Russia amid signs of a split with some members pushing for a meeting with President Vladimir Putin, and others opposed given their deep-seated distrust of Russia's head of state.
- Another Man Arrested In Crimea Accused Of Spying For Ukraine RFE/RL 24 Jun 2021 -- Russian-imposed authorities in Ukraine's Crimea have arrested a man on charges of spying for Kyiv, the second person detained for alleged espionage on the peninsula since April.
- Britain Denies Russia Fired Warning Shots At Warship In Black Sea RFE/RL 23 Jun 2021 -- The United Kingdom has denied reports that a Russian vessel fired warning shots at a British Navy ship in the Black Sea, attributing the incident to a preannounced military exercise.
- Warning Shots Fired at British Destroyer in Black Sea, Russia Says VOA 23 Jun 2021 -- Russian forces said they fired warning shots Wednesday at a British Royal Navy destroyer taking part in a U.S.-led naval exercise in the Black Sea near Crimea, the Ukrainian peninsula annexed by Russia in 2014.
- U.S Lawmakers Pressure White House On Extradition Of Ukrainian Tycoon Firtash RFE/RL 23 Jun 2021 -- Congressional lawmakers are ratcheting up the pressure on the White House, demanding more be done to force the extradition of a powerful Ukrainian tycoon from Austria to the United States.
- UK signs agreement to support enhancement of Ukrainian naval capabilities UK MOD 23 Jun 2021 -- In a trilateral agreement signed onboard HMS Defender, which was in Odesa as part of the Carrier Strike Group deployment, the UK, Ukraine and industry will collaborate to boost Ukraine's naval capabilities.
- Babcock signs tripartite agreement to support enhancement of Ukrainian naval capabilities Babcock 23 Jun 2021 -- Babcock International Group (Babcock) has signed a tripartite Memorandum of Implementation (MoI) in Odesa with the Ministry of Defence of Ukraine and the UK Government. Building on the agreement signed in October 2020, the two nations will now push forward a major programme of Ukrainian naval projects, with Babcock as their designated prime industrial partner.
- Ukrainian Tycoon's Lawyer Says Allegations Against His Client Are 'Wrong' RFE/RL 21 Jun 2021 -- Ukraine's controversial tycoon Dmytro Firtash has denied the allegations behind Kyiv's move to impose sanctions on him for selling titanium products that the Ukrainian government believes end up being used by Russian military enterprises.
- Russian Man Charged With Spying For Ukraine Transferred To Moscow RFE/RL 21 Jun 2021 -- A Russian national detained in April in Ukraine's Russia-annexed Crimean Peninsula on espionage charges has been transferred to Moscow.
- U.S. Says 'Contingency' Aid Ready If Russia Attacks Ukraine RFE/RL 19 Jun 2021 -- The United States has prepared contingency military aid in the event of further Russian military incursions into Ukraine, the White House has said.
- Ukraine Slaps Sanctions On Oligarch Wanted By U.S. Ahead Of President's Trip To Washington RFE/RL 18 Jun 2021 -- Ukraine has imposed punitive sanctions against Dmytro Firtash, a powerful tycoon indicted by the United States for corruption, as President Volodymyr Zelenskiy widens his crackdown against influential elites ahead of his first official visit to Washington next month.
- Statement by Press Secretary Jen Psaki on Ukraine Security Assistance The White House 18 Jun 2021
- NATO Membership For Ukraine Would Be 'Red Line,' Kremlin Says RFE/RL 17 Jun 2021 -- Ukraine becoming a member of NATO would be a "red line" for Russia, the Kremlin has said after U.S. President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin held their first summit in Geneva.
- Ukraine Roots Out Ring Behind Hacks On U.S. Universities, South Korean Firms RFE/RL 16 Jun 2021 -- Police in Ukraine said on June 16 that they exposed a ring of hackers who targeted some of the most prestigious U.S. universities as well as commercial companies in South Korea.
- Ukrainian Power Broker Yermak Has President's Ear, West's Attention RFE/RL 14 Jun 2021 -- When Russia amassed tens of thousands of troops along Ukraine's border earlier this year, the United States' highest-ranking officials - from the president to the defense secretary to Washington's top diplomat - called their direct counterparts in Kyiv to express support.
- Zelensky's Head of Office Hopes NATO to Agree on Ukraine's Accession Soon Sputnik 13 Jun 2021 -- Ukraine's Head of the Presidential Administration Andriy Yermak expressed hopes that NATO will allow Ukraine to join the alliance as soon as possible.
- Lugansk Accuses Ukraine of Using Electronic Warfare Against OSCE Drones in Donbass Sputnik 13 Jun 2021 -- Ukraine's armed forces are waging electronic warfare aimed at hindering the work of OSCE monitoring drones at the contact line in Donbass, a spokesperson for the People's Militia of the self-proclaimed Lugansk People's Republic (LPR) said on Sunday.
- Pentagon announces $150 million in military aid to Ukraine Press TV 12 Jun 2021 -- The US Defense Department has announced a 150-million-dollar military aid package to Ukraine saying it will help the country bolster its borders against Russia, amid rising tensions between Kiev and Moscow.
- Defense Department Announces $150 Million in Assistance for Ukraine DoD 11 Jun 2021 -- The Department of Defense announces a new $150 million package for the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative (USAI) that includes training, equipment, and advisory efforts to help Ukraine's forces preserve the country's territorial integrity, secure its borders, and improve interoperability with NATO.
- Pentagon Announces $150 Million In Military Aid For Ukraine RFE/RL 11 Jun 2021 -- The U.S. Defense Department announced on June 11 a new military assistance package for Ukraine.
- US Sending Ukraine Millions in Security Assistance VOA 11 Jun 2021 -- The United States is helping Ukraine bolster its defense capabilities, announcing a $150 million security package less than a week before U.S. President Joe Biden is set to meet Russian President Vladimir Putin in Geneva.
- 'In The Convoy With The Buk': An Open-Source Investigator Follows The MH17 Trial RFE/RL 11 Jun 2021 -- On June 7, the trial in absentia of four suspects - three Russians and one Ukrainian - in connection with the downing of a passenger jet over eastern Ukraine in 2014 entered the phase during which judges heard the evidence accumulated by prosecutors.
- Secretary General speaks with Ukrainian President ahead of NATO Summit NATO 10 Jun 2021 -- NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg spoke with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy on Thursday (10 June 2021), ahead of the NATO Summit.
- Ukraine's New Gas Chief Says He Is 'True Reformer' After Backlash Over His Appointment RFE/RL 10 Jun 2021 -- The new chief executive officer of Ukraine's state-owned gas behemoth has said he is committed to pushing reforms at the company after a recent management change sparked Western concerns about transparency.
- EU Court Annuls 2019 Decision On Ex-Ukrainian President Yanukovych RFE/RL 09 Jun 2021 -- The General Court of the European Union has annulled the bloc's 2019 decision to extend asset freezes imposed on former Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych and his son Oleksandr over the alleged embezzlement of Ukrainian state funds and assets.
- Putin Says Ukrainians Opposing NATO Membership Are 'Smart People' Sputnik 09 Jun 2021 -- Russian President Vladimir Putin praised the intelligence of Ukrainians who oppose their country's NATO membership, noting that they do not want to become cannon fodder or political currency.
- US Policy on Ukraine Creates Tensions, Negotiations Format Does Not Really Matter, Moscow Says Sputnik 08 Jun 2021 -- Washington's "irresponsible" policy on Ukraine continues to "create tensions", Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov said on Tuesday, commenting on the recent conversation of the US and the Ukrainian leaders.
- Statement by Press Secretary Jen Psaki on President Joseph R. Biden, Jr. Call with President Volodymyr Zelenskyy of Ukraine The White House 07 Jun 2021
- Ukraine Making Progress on Defense Reforms, Official Says DoD News 07 Jun 2021 -- America is unwavering in its support for Ukraine sovereignty, territorial integrity and Euro Atlantic aspirations, said the deputy assistant secretary of defense for Russia, Ukraine and Eurasia.
- Deputy Secretary General underlines NATO support for Ukraine NATO 07 Jun 2021 -- NATO Deputy Secretary General Mircea GeoanÄ underlined the Alliance's enduring support for Ukraine and its ambitious reform agenda at the 'Zero Corruption: Democracy in Action' conference on Monday (7 June 2021).
- Ukraine Still Needs to Implement Reforms to Meet NATO Criteria, Pentagon Official Says Sputnik 07 Jun 2021 -- Ukraine still needs to implement a series of reforms to ensure the interoperability of its armed forces with those of NATO and meet the alliance's membership requirements, US Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defence Laura Cooper said on Monday.
- Court In Netherlands To Start Hearing Evidence In MH17 Case RFE/RL 07 Jun 2021 -- The trial in absentia of four suspects -- three Russians and one Ukrainian -- in the downing of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 over Ukraine in 2014 has entered a decisive new phase during which judges in the Netherlands will be presented with witness testimony and evidence.
- Germany In Talks To Make Ukraine 'Whole' For Losses From Russian Pipeline, Blinken Says RFE/RL 07 Jun 2021 -- Germany is discussing ways to compensate Ukraine for the financial loss it will suffer from the completion of a controversial Russian natural-gas pipeline backed by Berlin, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken has told Congress.
- Biden Invites Ukrainian President To White House RFE/RL 07 Jun 2021 -- President Joe Biden invited Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy to visit the White House this summer in a show of support for the Eastern European nation.
- Biden Invites Ukrainian Leader to White House VOA 07 Jun 2021 -- Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, pleading to meet U.S. President Joe Biden prior to Biden's talks in Geneva next week, was rebuffed by the White House on that request but was awarded a consolation phone call on Monday that included an invitation to Washington.
- Human Rights Groups Urge Ukraine To Fix Shortcomings In Proposed Reform Of Security Service RFE/RL 04 Jun 2021 -- Human Rights Watch (HRW) and more than 20 other groups have encouraged Ukraine's parliament to address shortcomings in a proposed law to reform the country's security service before passing it.
- Iran slams unprofessional behaviors regarding Ukrainian plane; says ready to negotiate Press TV 04 Jun 2021 -- A senior Iranian diplomat has blasted the unprofessional behavior of certain countries in dealing with the 2020 Ukrainian plane crash near Tehran, expressing the Islamic Republic's readiness for negotiation and cooperation on the matter.
- Calling on Russia to immediately cease its aggression against Ukraine and end its occupation of Crimea UK FCDO 02 Jun 2021 -- Joint Statement Following Russia's Informal Arria-formula Meeting on Ukraine
- Ukraine has alternative for security before joining NATO: president People's Daily 02 Jun 2021 -- Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky stated that the security guarantees provided by the European Union and the United States could become an alternative to Ukraine's joining the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), the president's press service reported Tuesday on its official website.
- Russia says NATO plans to transfer modern weapons to Ukraine Press TV 02 Jun 2021 -- As NATO and Russia continue a dispute over Ukraine's eastern region of the Donbass, a Russian military official has said modern weapons will be delivered to Ukraine under the guise of NATO's annual military drill in the strategic Black Sea.
- Visiting U.S. Senators Pledge Continued Support For Ukraine Amid 'Russian Aggression' RFE/RL 02 Jun 2021 -- A U.S. bipartisan congressional delegation visiting Kyiv has encouraged Ukraine to continue reforms to solidify its democracy and expressed solidarity with the country in the face of Russian "aggression."
- Berlin Stresses Importance of Preservation of Ukrainian Transit Along With Nord Stream 2 Sputnik 02 Jun 2021 -- The German government considers the preservation of Ukrainian transit along with the operation of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project to be very important, the German Foreign Ministry said, commenting on Moscow's statement about interest in this route of Russian gas deliveries.
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