Home /
Archive for: August 2021 - DIGEST UKRAINE

Monthly Archives: August 2021

Under a small bridge more than 100 kilometers from the Turkish border with Iran, a small group of boys and young men waits quietly for a smuggler.  They are unwashed, exhausted and hungry. Most of them are under 18, and they are all from Afghanistan. When the Taliban began taking over their towns and villages, they fled their homes with almost nothing. Currently, after more than two months of travel, they have even less. “I brought shampoo, soap, money, my phone and a watch,” says Saboon Afghan, 24, the oldest in the group and its de facto leader. “I used up some and the rest was stolen. Now, I just have these clothes and an empty bag.” Sorry, but your browser cannot support embedded video of this type, you can
Zaki Wassim, 17, at right, sits beside his brother under the bridge. Both of them are trying to reach Istanbul for the second time, after being sent back to the Iranian border by Turkish police a few weeks ago. (VOA/Yan Boechat)”We were walking openly on the streets for an hour when the police arrested us last time,” says Zaki Wassim, 17, from Kabul, explaining what happened when he tried to enter Turkey from Iran about a month ago. “The next evening, they took us in a bus to the border and shouted, ‘Don’t come back to Turkey.'” Influx angers some Turks Earlier this month, the Taliban swept into Kabul after taking over vast swaths of Afghanistan in a matter of days. Since then, mass evacuations have left the Kabul airport in chaos, and Islamic State suicide bombers have killed at least 170 people and 13 U.S. service members.  The country is on edge, waiting to find out what will happen now that the United States has met its self-declared August 31 deadline to pull out of Afghanistan completely. Afghan refugees detained in a Turkish deportation center watch journalists touring their facility with Turkish officials in Van, Turkey, Aug. 30, 2021. (VOA/Yan Boechat)Turkish officials also are waiting to see what happens next, saying it may be weeks or months before they can resume deportations. Turkey currently has 25 deportation centers, all filled to capacity with mostly Afghan refugees, and it plans to build eight more. “We cannot send them back because of human rights issues,” says Omurcu. “But if things go well, we will resume normal deportations.” Soldiers patrol the Turkish-Iranian border trying to prevent Afghans refugees from entering Turkey, on Aug. 30, 2021. (VOA/Yan Boechat)Many Turkish people are angered by the influx of Afghan refugees, saying their country is being damaged economically and socially by the crisis. Turkey already hosts more than 4 million refugees and asylum-seekers, more than any other country in the world, including 3.6 million Syrian refugees. During the tour, officials express sympathy for the detainees, showing playrooms for children, Turkish language classes, and a line of young men picking up what appears to be a healthy meal. They also express sympathy for the angered Turkish nationals, who want refugees out of their country.  “Illegal entries are out of control in Turkey,” Omurcu continues. “It is too much.” Asylum claims The process for becoming a legal refugee in Turkey involves applying for asylum via government officials. In most countries, the U.N. refugee agency, the UNHCR, processes the claims, but Turkey relieved the agency of that responsibility in 2018. Under the bridge, the boys do not seem to know much about the process, saying first they were driven from their homes by crushing poverty. Later, they explain the poverty was a result of war and violence. Both the United Nations and Turkey are clear: fleeing violence and danger can make you eligible for refugee status. Fleeing poverty does not, even if the two are intertwined.  At the deportation center, some refugees point out that no one plans to become a refugee, so it is reasonable that some people do not know how to organize their tragic stories in order to fit into a legal definition. Soraya, 19, fled her home in the western part of Afghanistan when the Taliban was getting closer. She left with her sister and five nephews and nieces, After crossing Iran and entering Turkey they decided to go to the police and seek asylum, pictured Aug. 30, 2021. (VOA/Yan Boechat)Soraya, 19, was in her third semester at a university when she ran from her home in western Afghanistan. She was studying physics and chemistry, hoping one day to become a doctor.  When the Taliban took over her town, she and her sister fled with her nieces and nephews. Besides the violence of the war, they feared they would be in danger, just for being educated women.  And while she hopes Turkey will help her find a safe place to live, outside of the detention camp, she doesn’t see it as Turkey’s responsibility. “This is my request for the whole world,” she says. “Please pave the way for us. We escaped the battles ourselves. Now we need help.” Mohammad Mahdi Sultani contributed to this report.
 


your ad here

Deportation centers in Turkey are filled to capacity as refugees from Afghanistan continue to cross the border from Iran by night, hoping to evade police and resettle. As VOA tours a deportation center in Van, officials say they are not sending people back to Afghanistan, but they also have no plans to release detainees. VOA’s Heather Murdock has this report from Van, on the Turkish border with Iran.Camera: Yan BoechatMohammad Mahdi Sultani contributed to this story.


your ad here

Russian President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday ordered law enforcement officers and army staff receive $200, as he seeks support for his unpopular United Russia party ahead of parliamentary elections next month.The cash handouts follow earlier one-time payments for pensioners of $135 ahead of lower house State Duma polls in September, with United Russia’s ratings hit by rising prices coupled with falling wages.Russia’s legal information portal showed Putin had signed decrees ordering one-time cash payments of 15,000 rubles ($200) for members of the military and law enforcement bodies to be handed out in September for their “social protection.”While Russia has not announced how many people will receive the payments, the country has some 42 million pensioners and 1.7 million members of the military, police and national guard, according to official statistics.The Interfax news agency cited lawmaker Andrei Makarov, who heads the budget committee of Russia’s lower house of parliament, as saying that the payments will total more than 500 billion rubles ($6.8 billion).The payments come as Russian authorities have struggled to curb soaring inflation, with Putin ordering his government several times since late 2020 to take measures to bring prices under control.Annual inflation has reached 6.5%, according to the central bank, which in June hiked its key interest rate to the same figure — its biggest increase since a currency crisis in 2014.United Russia has seen its ratings fall in recent years after the government passed a controversial pension plan in 2018 and as the country’s economy has stagnated. The ruling party is polling around 30%, according to state-run pollster VTsIOM — a 10-point drop from the last lower house elections in 2016.It currently controls 75% of seats in the State Duma, with the rest held by parties widely seen as doing the Kremlin’s bidding.Ahead of the September vote, Russian authorities have pursued a crackdown on the opposition and independent media.Jailed opposition leader Alexey Navalny has seen his organizations declared “extremist” and banned in the country, while all of his top allies have fled.Meanwhile, leading independent media outlets including the Meduza news website and the Dozhd TV channel have been designated “foreign agents,” while investigative outlet Proekt was declared an “undesirable organization.”


your ad here

Раніше ЗМІ написали про те, що три громадяни України постраждали під час сходження лавини у горах Північної Осетії


your ad here

Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskiy is scheduled to visit the White House on Wednesday, September 1st. VOA’s Ostap Yarysh reports on the long-awaited meeting from Washington.Camera: Kostiantyn Golubchyk, Contributor: Myroslava Gongadze


your ad here

The mayor of Italy’s financial capital Milan demanded answers on Monday over why a fire was able to rip through an apartment block and melt its cladding, comparing it to the Grenfell Tower fire in London that killed 71 people four years ago. Firefighters said everyone managed to escape the 18 story building in the south of Milan, which was gutted by the blaze that broke out on Sunday afternoon. Among the residents in the high rise building was rapper Mahmood, winner of the 2019 San Remo music festival with his international hit “Soldi.” Witnesses have said the fire, which started on the 15th floor, quickly surged through the outside cladding of the building. Video of the blaze showed panels melting off the building in liquefied clumps. “The tower was built just over 10 years ago and it is unacceptable that such a modern building should have proved totally vulnerable,” mayor Beppe Sala wrote on Facebook. “What was clear from the start was that the building’s outer shell went up in flames far too quickly, in a manner reminiscent of the Grenfell Tower fire in London a few years ago.” The deaths in Britain’s Grenfell Tower fire were blamed on exterior cladding panels made of flammable material. Owners of flats in similar buildings across Britain have since been forced to remove such panels at a cost estimated to run into billions of dollars, forcing many residents into economic hardship.  


your ad here

Біля Новозванівки бойовики стріляли зі станкових протитанкових і автоматичних станкових гранатометів та великокаліберних кулеметів, неподалік Шумів – зі станкових протитанкових гранатометів і стрілецької зброї, поблизу Троїцького – з великокаліберних кулеметів


your ad here

EU governments must push ahead with a European rapid reaction force to be better prepared for future crises such as in Afghanistan, the EU’s foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said.In an interview published on Monday, Borrell told Italian paper Il Corriere della Sera the short-notice deployment of U.S. troops to Afghanistan as security deteriorated showed the EU needed to accelerate efforts to build a common defense policy.”We need to draw lessons from this experience … as Europeans we have not been able to send 6,000 soldiers around the Kabul airport to secure the area. The US has been, we haven’t,” he said.Borrell said the 27-member EU should have an “initial entry force” of 5,000 soldiers. “We need to be able to act quickly.”In May, 14 EU countries including Germany and France proposed such a force, possibly with ships and aircraft, to help democratic foreign governments needing urgent help.First discussed in 1999 in connection with the Kosovo war, a joint system of battlegroups of 1,500 personnel each was set up in 2007 to respond to crises, but they have not been used because EU governments disagreed on how and when to deploy them.Borrell said it was time to be flexible, citing agreements made quickly to cope with the financial crisis as an example of how the EU could overcome restrictions in the deployment of military operations laid down in its constitutional treaties.”We can work in many different ways,” he said.Britain, long a reluctant EU member, was instrumental in the creation of the battlegroups in the 2000s but did not approve deployment as domestic opposition grew to anything that might resemble the creation of an EU army. With Britain’s departure from the bloc, the EU executive hopes the idea can be revived.But obstacles remain, including the lack of a common defense culture among the various EU members and differences over which countries should be given priority for deployment.


your ad here

French President Emmanuel Macron on Sunday visited Iraq’s northern city of Mosul, which suffered widespread destruction during the war to defeat the Islamic State group in 2017. He vowed to fight alongside regional governments against terrorism. Macron said IS carried out deadly attacks throughout the world from its self-declared caliphate in parts of Syria and Iraq. He said IS did not differentiate between people’s religion and nationality when it came to killing, noting that the extremists killed many Muslims. “We will do whatever we can, shoulder to shoulder, with the governments of the region and with the Iraqi government to fight against this terrorism,” Macron said in English following a visit to an iconic mosque that was destroyed by the extremists. “We will be present alongside with sovereign governments to restore peace.” Macron said France will help in rebuilding mutual respect as well as monuments, churches, schools and mosques and most importantly “economic opportunity.” Despite the defeat of IS on the battlefield in Iraq and Syria, the group’s sleeper cells still carry out deadly attacks in both countries and an affiliate of the group claimed Thursday’s attacks at Kabul’s airport in Afghanistan that killed scores. Macron began his visit to Mosul by touring the Our Lady of the Hour Church, a Catholic church that was badly damaged during the rule of IS that lasted from 2014 until the extremists’ defeat three years later. Iraqi children dressed in white and waving Iraqi and French flags sang upon Macron’s arrival. FILE – Pope Francis arrives to pray for the victims of war at Hosh al-Bieaa Church Square in Mosul, Iraq.It was the same church where Pope Francis led a special prayer during a visit to Iraq in March. During the trip, the pontiff urged Iraq’s Christians to forgive the injustices against them by Muslim extremists and to rebuild as he visited the wrecked shells of churches. Macron moved around the church — whose walls are still riddled with bullets — amid tight security as a priest accompanying him gave him details about the church built in the 19th century. The French president then went up to the roof overlooking parts of Mosul accompanied by Iraqi officials. “We hope that France will open a consulate in Mosul,” Iraqi priest Raed Adel told Macron inside the church. He also called on the president to help in the reconstruction of Mosul’s airport. Macron made a list of promises during his meeting with Christian leaders at Our Lady of the Hour church, including opening a consulate. “I’m struck by what’s at stake here so I want to also tell you that we are going to be making the decision to bring back a consulate and schools,” Macron said. 
Macron left the church in the early afternoon and headed to Mosul’s landmark al-Nuri mosque, which was blown up in the battle with IS militants in 2017 and is being rebuilt. French President Emmanuel Macron (unseen) tours the Al-Nuri Mosque in Iraq’s second city of Mosul, in the northern Nineveh province, on August 29, 2021.The mosque, also known as The Great Mosque of al-Nuri, and its iconic leaning minaret were built in the 12th century. It was from the mosque’s pulpit that IS’s self-styled caliph, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, declared the caliphate’s establishment in 2014. Mosul, Iraq’s second largest city, became IS’s bureaucratic and financial backbone. It took a ferocious nine-month battle to finally free the city in July 2017. Between 9,000 and 11,000 civilians were killed, according to an Associated Press investigation at the time, and the war left widespread destruction. Many Iraqis have had to rebuild on their own amid a years-long financial crisis. Since the early years of Christianity, northern Iraq has been home to large Christian communities. But over the past decades, tens of thousands left Iraq and settled elsewhere amid the country’s wars and instability that culminated with the persecution of Christians by extremists over the past decade. The traditionally Christian towns dotting the Nineveh Plains of the north emptied out in 2014 as Christians — as well as many Muslims — fled the Islamic State group’s onslaught. Only a few have returned to their homes since the defeat of IS in Iraq was declared four years ago, and the rest remain scattered elsewhere in Iraq or abroad. Macron arrived in Baghdad early Saturday where he took part in a conference attended by officials from around the Middle East aimed at easing Mideast tensions and underscored the Arab country’s new role as mediator. Macron hailed the Baghdad conference as a major boost for Iraq and its leadership. The country had been largely shunned by Arab leaders for the past few decades because of security concerns amid back-to-back wars and internal unrest, its airport frequently attacked with rockets by insurgents. Macron vowed to maintain troops in Iraq “regardless of the Americans’ choices” and “for as long as the Iraqi government is asking for our support.” France currently contributes to the international coalition forces in Iraq with 800 soldiers. On Saturday night, Macron visited a Shi’ite holy shrine in Baghdad before flying to the northern city of Irbil, where he met Nobel Peace Prize laureate Nadia Murad, the 28-year-old activist who was forced into sexual slavery by IS fighters in Iraq. A member of Iraq’s Yazidi minority, Murad was among thousands of women and girls who were captured and forced into sexual slavery by IS in 2014. Her mother and six brothers were killed by IS fighters in Iraq. She became an activist on behalf of women and girls after escaping and finding refuge in Germany and shared the Nobel Peace Prize in 2018. 


your ad here

Вогнем у відповідь на один із цих обстрілів був ліквідований бойовик «ЛНР», визнали в цьому угрупованні


your ad here