New EU military support mission to Ukraine already training 1,100 Ukrainian soldiers

Published in World
Monday, 05 December 2022 14:44

The new Military Assistance Mission of the European Union to support Ukraine (EUMAM for Ukraine), established on 15 November, is already training 1,100 Ukrainian soldiers in different camps, EU High Representative Josep Borrell announced during his visit to the Brzeg training facility in Poland on Friday.

Borrell said this was the broadest military mission the European Union had ever undertaken for any partner. Twenty EU countries are taking part, and they are expected to train 15,000 Ukrainian soldiers. Borrell added that the EU is also going to provide resources – €16 million for lethal equipment for training purposes.

“The Ukrainian army is one of the best in the world. They have proven to be. Ukraine is resisting, fighting off the Russian aggression, which is trying to cruelly push the country into darkness and cold. Humbled by the courageous soldiers and their will to defend their people,” wrote Borrell on Twitter.

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Grain from Ukraine: European Commission pays to ship 40,000 tons of Ukrainian grain via two boats

Published in World
Tuesday, 29 November 2022 13:30

On 26 November, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen announced the European Commission would pay for the transportation of 40,000 tonnes of Ukrainian grain on two ships, as part of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s ‘Grain from Ukraine’ initiative.

This will be on top of the 28 million tons of agri products shipped via the EU’s Solidarity Lanes and the Black Sea Grain Initiative, von der Leyen added.

Ukraine launched the ‘Grain from Ukraine’ initiative at the International Summit on Food Security, organised in Kyiv on the anniversary of the Holodomor, the starvation of millions of Ukrainians caused by Soviet policies in 1932-33.

“90 years after the Holodomor, we honour the memory of Ukraine’s victims. They died in silence, starving to death, and, at that time, the world did not rise to help them. We will not let this happen again,” said von der Leyen. “Today, Russia is again using food as a weapon.

As part of its brutal aggression against Ukraine, Russia has destroyed your agricultural production, targeted your grain silos, and blockaded your ports.”

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European Commission proposes unprecedented support package for Ukraine – up to €18 billion for 2023

Published in World
Thursday, 10 November 2022 11:34

The European Commission today proposed an unprecedented support package for Ukraine of up to €18 billion for 2023. These funds will be provided in the form of highly concessional loans to be repaid in regular instalments starting in 2033.

“This stable, regular and predictable financial assistance – averaging €1.5 billion per month – will help cover a significant part of Ukraine’s short-term funding needs for 2023, which the Ukrainian authorities and the International Monetary Fund estimate at €3 to €4 billion per month,” says a press release from the European Commission.

Thanks to this package, Ukraine will be able to keep on paying wages and pensions and keep essential public services running, such as hospitals, schools, and housing for relocated people. It will also allow Ukraine to ensure macroeconomic stability, and restore critical infrastructure destroyed by Russia in its war of aggression, such as energy infrastructure, water systems, transport networks, roads and bridges.

The funds will be provided through highly concessional loans, to be repaid in the course of maximum 35 years, starting in 2033. The EU also proposes to cover Ukraine’s interest rate costs, through additional targeted payments by Member States into the EU budget. 

EU Member States and third countries will also be able to add more funds to the instrument, to be used as grants, should they wish to do so. The funds will then be channelled through the EU budget, allowing Ukraine to receive the support in a coordinated manner.

The MFA+ instrument will be accompanied by reforms to help Ukraine advance on its path to becoming a member of the EU. This means that the Ukrainian government will have to complement the financial support with sectoral and institutional reforms, including anti-corruption and judicial reforms, respect of the rule of law, good governance, and modernisation of the national and local institutions.

The Commission’s proposal will need approval by the European Parliament and EU Member States in the Council before entering into force.

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Published in Politics
Tuesday, 25 October 2022 17:00

"The Parliamentary Delegations will have the opportunity to yet again show their support for Ukraine on the International Crimea Platform”, - the Speaker, Shalva Papuashvili, who, attending the First Parliamentary Summit of the International Crimea Platform in Croatia along with the Parliamentary Delegation, stated.
According to the Speaker, Georgia is well aware of what Russian aggression means and how important it is to respond appropriately from the international community.

"As for our delegation and my speech, based on the experience of Georgia, we will focus on the meaning of Russian aggression, possible improper response of the international community at the time, and the correct response to Russian aggression. We are a country that has experienced Russian aggression several times and we know very well what the right reaction should be. Based on our experience, we will dwell on what solidarity with Ukraine should mean”, - Shalva Papuashvili stated.

The Speaker is expected to address the participants of the session of the First Parliamentary Summit of the International Crimea Platform.

43 delegations of 32 parliaments, 5 international parliamentary organizations and 26 parliament chairpersons are participating in the Platform.

As part of the visit, bilateral meetings of the Speaker and the Parliamentary Delegation are also scheduled.

The Parliamentary Delegation of Georgia is composed of the Vice Speaker, Archil Talakvadze and the Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, Nikoloz Samkharadze.

EBRD commits up to €3 billion to Ukraine

Published in World
Monday, 24 October 2022 15:09

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) will commit up to €3 billion over 2022-2023 to help Ukraine’s businesses and economy keep functioning.  

On a visit to Kyiv, EBRD President Odile Renaud-Basso told Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy of the Bank’s determination to support Ukraine while it defends itself against Russia’s aggression. 

Since the invasion began in February, the EBRD has committed more than €1 billion, and aims to triple that figure by the end of 2023. Its primary focus will be to support the “real” economy – maintaining energy and food security, restoring rail infrastructure, and supporting the pharmaceutical industry.

EBRD investment has already been made into Ukraine’s electricity company Ukrenergo, as well as providing up to €500m liquidity support for ‘Naftogaz’, the country’s main gas supplier. Discussions are also underway to scale up funding for urgent repairs of the electricity grid and to support municipal authorities in Kyiv, Lviv and Dnipro, says the EBRD.

EBRD investments are backed by donors or guarantors from EU and G7 countries, including the US. Norway recently pledged  €200m in support. 

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EU supports cybersecurity in Ukraine with over €10 million

Published in Economics
Friday, 21 October 2022 12:39

The EU will spend €10 million on strengthening cyber security in Ukraine until February 2023.

The ‘EU Support to Strengthen Cyber Security in Ukraine’ project lasts from March 2022 and is implemented by the E-Governance Academy from Estonia (EGA). 

The project focuses on three main areas that mainly affect the delivery of public services in Ukraine online and offline. First, the EU supports Trembita’s secure data exchange platform and the management of public registries, including identifying and neutralising possible cyber threats. Second, the EU helps protect critical infrastructure and public data, including the replacement of destroyed equipment. Third, the EU provides security tools to enable operational staff to maintain and service critical public infrastructure.

“We are grateful to the EU for supporting Ukraine’s critical infrastructure. Our digital state that consists of both Diia mobile application and Diia web portal continues to serve and help citizens, meanwhile government data is secured,” said Mykhailo Fedorov, Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Digital Transformation of Ukraine.

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European Union disburses €2 billion in macro-financial assistance to Ukraine

Published in Politics
Tuesday, 18 October 2022 19:16

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen announced today that the EU is disbursing a further €2 billion in macro-financial assistance to Ukraine.

“More will follow by the end of the year. We’ll stand by Ukraine for as long as it takes,” wrote Ursuka von der Leyen on Twitter.

She added that the EU would discuss how to ensure continued support with global partners at the RebuildUkraine conference, which will take place in Berlin, on 25 October.

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How can Europe and the European Union be without such nations as Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia?

Published in Politics
Thursday, 13 October 2022 11:30

During the address at the autumn session of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, the member of Parliament of Ukraine, Serhii Soboliev said that it's impossible to realise how Europe and the European Union can be without such nations as Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia.

“it's very important to understand that as well, as it's impossible to realise how Europe and the European Union can be without the free nations of the Western Balkans, including Kosovo. It's also impossible to realise how Europe and the European Union can be without such nations as Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia. This report has the excellent possibility to understand that now we are all in one boat: a boat of democracy, but this boat must be protected, and must be protected not only by economical methods, but by military methods as well”, - said Serhii Soboliev.

In addition, the member of the Social Democratic Party Titus Corlățean noted: “all the time the EU enlargement process was a huge asset for the European Union”.

“It was the case with the Central Eastern former communist countries; it is the case now with some of the Eastern partners, such as Ukraine, Republic of Moldova, and I hope also Georgia before the end of the year. It should definitely be the case, but not only in making reference to a European perspective. We should use the proper words”, - said Titus Corlățean.

The senator of the French Senate, member of the Union Centrists group, Claude Kern also addressed to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe. He said that the European perspective of the Western Balkans should be strongly reaffirmed, without the difficulties associated with joining the European Union.

“The same goes for Ukraine and the Republic of Moldova – and perhaps, I hope, one day for Georgia. But the pre-accession phase is a crucial step if we are to avoid importing systemic problems into the European Union”, - said Claude Kern.

Remind you that the autumn session of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe is holding in Strasbourg from 10 to 14 October.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy is due to address the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe by videoconference on Thursday.

There will also be addresses by the President of Ireland, Michael D. Higgins, and the President of the Swiss Confederation, Ignazio Cassis, as well as the Prime Minister of Albania, Edi Rama.

Thomas Byrne, Ireland’s European Affairs Minister, will present the Communication from the Committee of Ministers in the framework of the Irish Presidency of the Council of Europe.

The Organization’s Secretary General Marija Pejčinović Burić will hold the usual question time with PACE members.

Member of the Ukrainian delegation to PACE, addressed the press: "Creation of a new initiative group to impose sanctions against persons and organizations guilty of war crimes and genocide against the Ukr

Published in Politics
Wednesday, 12 October 2022 14:09

On October 12 at the Council of Europe, Oleksiy GONCHARENKO, a member of the Ukrainian delegation to PACE, addressed the press on the following issue: "Creation of a new initiative group to impose sanctions against persons and organizations guilty of war crimes and genocide against the Ukrainian people"

On 24 February 2022, Russia started a full-scale, unprovoked and unjustified military invasion of Ukraine. The purpose of this Russian aggression is to seize the territory of the sovereign, democratic and European state of Ukraine. In Ukraine, Russia is organising genocide and committing war crimes against the Ukrainian civilian population.

The military aggression against Ukraine is the result of the collective actions by the political, military and civilian classes of Russia, often supported by powerful business owners. 

Many of those responsible for initiating, supporting and committing the aggressive military action in Ukraine own property and bank accounts within the territory of the Council of Europe. Even after the outbreak of the large-scale hostilities, a number of persons who had been under Ukrainian sanctions but had not been under European sanctions, could move freely throughout the territory of the Council of Europe.  

We, representatives of Ukraine, Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia and Great Britain, Members of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, found a group to identity and ultimately impose sanctions on individuals and entities involved in the Russian military aggression against Ukraine and who are located on the territory of the Council of Europe and the United States of America.

The Council of Europe and the European Union impose sanctions based on their own information, the United States and the United Kingdom on the basis of their own again, and Ukraine on the basis of theirs as well. This leads to desynchronization of actions and sanctions.

We, the founders of this initiative, aim to synchronize and coordinate all these lists of sanctions.
We start with a list of 1940 individuals who are involved in the Russian aggression against Ukraine and against whom the Government of Ukraine has already imposed sanctions, but neither the Member States of the Council of Europe, nor the EU, nor the United Kingdom, nor the United States of America took any action against yet.

We are urging the European Commission, His Majesty’s Government of the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland, the Government of the United States and all the Governments of the Council of Europe Member States to impose sanctions against all 1940 individuals already on the Ukrainian sanctions list.


Council of Europe leaders condemn Russian air strikes against towns and cities in Ukraine

Published in Politics
Monday, 10 October 2022 23:04

STRASBOURG. Ireland’s Minister for Foreign Affairs and Chair of the Council of Europe’s Committee of Ministers, Simon Coveney, the President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, Tiny Kox, and the Secretary General of the Council of Europe, Marija Pejčinović Burić, have made the following statement:

“We strongly condemn the Russian air strikes against towns and cities in Ukraine in the last two days which led to multiple civilian casualties, including many children, as well as the destruction of civilian infrastructure. Such indiscriminate attacks demonstrate blatant disregard for human life and constitute serious violations of international humanitarian law. They must not go unpunished. We also call for compliance by the Russian Federation with the interim measures issued by the European Court of Human Rights on refraining from attacks against civilians and civilian objects, including residential premises. The military aggression against Ukraine has inflicted great pain and suffering for too long. We call on Russia to end its aggression, comply with its obligations under international law and withdraw unconditionally from the entirety of the territory of Ukraine. “

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