There are no translations available.

TERRORISME EN ESPAGNE

ATTAQUE A LA MACHETTE DANS DEUX EGLISES

Un sacristain a été tué et un prêtre blessé dans une attaque à la machette survenue mercredi soir dans deux églises d'Algésiras en Espagne. Une enquête pour terrorisme est ouverte. Les fidèles sont sous le choc.

Il était 19h, mercredi soir, quand un homme est entré dans l'église San Isidro d'Algésiras dans le sud de l'Espagne. Armé d'une machette, il a grièvement blessé le prêtre. Une heure auparavant, il s'était déjà rendu sur place - non armé - et s'était disputé avec des paroissiens en leur disant qu'ils devaient suivre l'islam, selon des médias espagnols.

Une fois le prêtre blessé, l'homme s'est rendu dans un autre édifice religieux, l'église Nustra Señora de La Palma, située à 200 m de là. Il a commencé à jeter au sol des crucifix et des bougies placés sur l'autel et s'est attaqué à un sacristain. Cet homme d'Église a réussi à s'enfuir mais l'assaillant lui a couru après et lui a infligé plusieurs blessures mortelles

Le sacristain s'appelait Diego Valencia. Le prêtre se nomme Antonio Rodriguez. Il a été grièvement blessé au cou.

« Peu avant 20 heures, une personne a perpétré une attaque à l’arme blanche, tuant une personne et en blessant d’autres dans l’église de San Isidro d’Algésiras, dans la province de Cadix », a indiqué pour sa part le ministère espagnol de l’Intérieur dans un communiqué succinct. Et de préciser : « L’assaillant a été arrêté et placé en garde à vue. »

Selon une source policière, l’assaillant était vêtu d’une djellaba et a « crié quelque chose » au moment de l’attaque. Des médias locaux, se basant sur des témoignages, indiquent que l’assaillant était armé d’une machette avec laquelle il a tué le sacristain.


L’auteur présumé était en instance d'expulsion depuis le mois de juin en raison de sa situation irrégulière mais il n'avait pas d'antécédents pénaux ou en matière de terrorisme en Espagne ou dans des pays alliés , a indiqué ce jeudi le ministère espagnol de l’Intérieur.

Le parquet a ouvert une enquête pour des « faits présumés de terrorisme » de nature islamiste.

Le maire d'Algésiras a décrété un jour de deuil national. Il invite la population à se rassembler à midi, ce jeudi, devant l'église où le sacristain est mort.




Alize Marion pour DayNewsWorld


WHAT ARE THE CONSEQUENCES OF THE DELIVERY OF HEAVY TANKS TO UKRAINE ?

The lock has jumped !.

Germany will authorize the delivery of Leopard tanks to the Ukrainian army.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz has decided to deliver Leopard 2 heavy battle tanks to Ukraine and allow allied countries to do the same, a source familiar with the matter said on Tuesday, while the United States may they too send tanks to Kyiv to help it against the Russian offensive.

The information was welcomed by Ukraine, which had long been asking, through the voice of its President Volodimir Zelensky, for an acceleration of arms deliveries and the dispatch of tanks by its Western allies.

According to the German newspaper Der Spiegel, which first reported the decision from Berlin, the delivery concerns at least one squadron of Leopard 2 A6s. A squadron is traditionally made up of fourteen vehicles. This decision comes a few days after a meeting between NATO allies which did not lead to an agreement on sending heavy tanks to Ukraine.

Germany was facing increased pressure from several European countries, such as Poland, to allow them to supply Kyiv with Leopard tanks and also send its vehicles to help Ukraine in the face of Russia's offensive .

After the Germans, here are the Americans.

A few hours after the announcement made by Berlin of the forthcoming delivery of Leopard 2 heavy tanks to the Ukrainian army, the United States confirmed this Wednesday afternoon the shipment of M1 Abrams model tanks.

Logic: according to the German press, Chancellor Olaf Scholz's announcement only came after discussions with Washington around a joint commitment. 31 Abrams tanks will be sent to Ukraine, a senior American official announced on Wednesday evening, "in line with our efforts to provide Ukraine with the capabilities it needs to continue to better defend itself".

How many tanks ?

Of the 3,500 Leopard 2 tanks in the world, more than 2,000 are in use in 13 European countries. While it is true that Germany has drastically reduced the number of its main battle tanks to a measly 6-7% of 1989 stocks, it could still spare some of its more than 300 Leopard 2 tanks in service, even if only 100 to 150 are ready to use.

The Armed Forces could potentially spare its 19 Leopard 2A5 models used only for practice, along with a few dozen others if politically prioritized and replaced with industry stock later. Together, Germany could then supply about fifty Leopard 2 tanks in a few weeks. Not to mention the 180 older, less powerful Leopard 1 tanks that are still in industry inventory.

The firepower, capabilities and mobility of the Leopard 2s promise a lot to the decimated fleet of the Ukrainians, helpless in this sector against the Russian armada. Impressive technical sheet

Built in series from the 1970s, the Leopard 2 is not the ultimate weapon but it remains a machine with impressive properties. It can roll and fire its shells from its 120mm gun at the same time. With its 450 km range and especially its 1500 horsepower, the Leopard 2 is capable of pushing its top speed up to 70 km/h.

It will still be necessary to deliver them in sufficient numbers and to accompany the expedition with the necessary efforts in terms of preparation, underline the observers.

The United States, for their part, will deliver 31 Abrams tanks.

This heavy tank which features a 120mm gun is the mainstay of the US Army and has been continuously improved since its introduction in 1981.

The announcement is part of an American support program for Ukraine, which has been reinforced for weeks. On January 6, the administration pledged to deliver new aid of 3 billion dollars to Ukraine. At the same time, the government decided on the shipment to Kyiv of hundreds of lighter armored combat vehicles.

A turning point in the conflict ?

At the end of the afternoon, Joe Biden declared at a press conference that the United States would deliver 31 Abrams tanks to Ukraine. "To strengthen their positions on the battlefield, [the Ukrainians] must be able to carry out maneuvers in open terrain and to defend themselves against the Russian aggressor", specified the president.

The delivery of heavy tanks becomes an alternative solution which should make it possible to open new breaches in the Russian system. It is indeed for the Ukrainians to pierce the concrete wall built by the Kremlin whose forces are always capable of winning as shown by the battle of Soledar.

At the end of the morning this Wednesday, following the German decision, the Ukrainian presidency welcomed the future delivery of the 14 Leopard tanks. While urging Westerners to provide more to fight against Russian soldiers. "A first step has been taken", commented on Telegram Andriï Iermak, the head of the presidential administration who called for the implementation of an international "coalition" to organize the supply of heavy tanks to his country. Finally adding: “we need a lot of Leopards”.

"This is going to become a real punch of democracy against autocracy," Andriy Yermak said via messaging app Telegram.




Joanne Courbet for DayNewsWorld

UKRAINE STRANGLED BY BUSINESS

CASCADE OF CORRUPTION

No less than five regional governors, four deputy ministers and two heads of a government agency were dismissed on Tuesday, January 24, 2023, in addition to the deputy head of the presidential administration and the deputy attorney general after the revelations of corruption cases.

In the past 24 hours, corruption scandals have affected very high personalities in the country. In addition to the Deputy Minister of Defence, those of Social Policy and Territorial Development were also dismissed.

To this list is added the deputy head of the presidential administration, the deputy prosecutor general, Oleksiï Simonenko, accused of having recently gone on vacation to Spain while travel abroad, except for professional purposes, is prohibited. for men of military age, and finally several regional governors, all forced to leave their posts. Unprecedented scandals since the war broke out.

These senior officials would have received bribes in connection with the contracts.

The deputy minister for infrastructure was arrested on Sunday for having received 400,000 dollars thanks to the overcharged purchase of electric generators. And this while the country is plagued by serious problems of power cuts.

Another scandal affecting military logistics this time: Viatcheslav Chapovalov is one of the defendants.

The Deputy Minister of Defense is thus accused of having participated in the signing of a contract at an overvalued price on food products intended for his soldiers, as revealed by the Ukrainian media ZN.UA.

The amount of the contract would amount to 324 million euros with prices established "two to three higher" than the current tariffs in force for basic food products according to the Ukrainian press.

The Ministry of Defense denied this, but Deputy Minister Viacheslav Shapovalov, in charge of the logistical support of the armed forces, was forced to resign, officially to facilitate the investigation into these allegations.

Business that is all the less acceptable for the Ukrainians in that all this takes place in time of war and that Ukraine, if it wants to continue to benefit from the support of the Western countries from which it is currently demanding modern tanks, must show itself irreproachable on this chapter.

“I want this to be clear: there will be no return to what was done in the past, to the way certain people close to state institutions lived,” Volodymyr Zelensky said Monday evening.

The Ukrainian President has promised new announcements and new decisions in the coming days to fight corruption.

Ukraine's corruption problems did not start with the war:

The country was ranked 122nd out of 180 on the NGO Transparency International's Corruption Perceptions Index in 2021.



Alize Marion for DayNewsWorld

THE FRANCO-GERMAN LOCOMOTIVE

HAS THE LEAD IN THE WING

Emmanuel Macron and Olaf Scholz yesterday celebrated the 60th anniversary of the reconciliation treaty between France and Germany, before leading a Council of Ministers. On this occasion, the Heads of State wished to ease the growing tensions between the two countries.

The leaders reaffirmed their full support for Ukraine, but did not decide on the direct delivery of Leclerc (France) and Leopard 2 (Germany) tanks. French President Emmanuel Macron said "nothing is ruled out" regarding the delivery of Leclerc tanks to Ukraine. “I asked the Minister of the Armed Forces to work on it,” he explained during a press conference on Sunday evening, alongside German Chancellor Olaf Scholz. The Head of State, however, listed three conditions for this delivery: the first, "that it is not escalatory", the second, "that it can provide real and effective support to our Ukrainian friends" and the third, "that it does not weaken our own defense capabilities. »

Asked about the Leopard tanks, Olaf Scholz said that "the way we have acted in the past is always closely coordinated with our friends and allies and we will continue to act according to the concrete situation". Criticized by many of his allies, especially in the East, Olaf Scholz let his Foreign Minister, Annalena Baerbock, announce on the LCI channel that Berlin would not oppose Poland if Warsaw decided to re-export the tanks to Ukraine. German Leopard in his possession.

But the two leaders have made no secret of the fact that their positions have remained very far apart on a European anti-missile shield project that Berlin wishes to carry out with Israeli and American technologies that already exist, while Paris is pleading for a European solution, on the basis of a system French-Italian.

The only major concrete announcement is Germany's support for the Franco-Portuguese-Spanish pipeline project carrying green hydrogen (H2Med).

On the other hand, they defined a “common line” in favor of an “ambitious and rapid” European response to American industrial subsidies in terms of energy transition. This action must be based on "simplicity" and "greater visibility on our aid systems", according to the French president, who has been maneuvering in recent months to convince European countries, and in particular Germany, to initiate a plan just as massive as that of the United States to avoid the deindustrialization of Europe. The two capitals have therefore given the measure of the calibration of the European response to the American plan to reduce inflation (IRA) whose massive subsidies threaten the competitiveness of the industry of the Old Continent.

Often criticized, the Franco-German leadership is however expected by the other capitals, Paris and Berlin have the responsibility to put themselves in overhang.

Far from being confined to the two banks of the Rhine, the ups and downs of the Franco-German couple also animate the debates in Brussels. The terms “axis” or “engine” are however preferred there to that of “couple”, because they describe more finely the role of Paris and Berlin in the manufacture of compromises at twenty-seven.

Thus the agreement of May 2020 between Angela Merkel and Emmanuel Macron which had paved the way for a historic recovery plan of 750 billion euros, financed by a common debt.

On most subjects – economy, defence, international trade – the two European powers start from opposite points of view, which structure the space in which the others position themselves. "Since the departure of the United Kingdom, this informal axis has become even more important to build bridges between the east and the west or between the north and the south of Europe", analyzes the Romanian MEP Dacian Ciolos.

In recent months, however, their disagreement has not gone unnoticed. But the accusing fingers rather point to Berlin. Could the Chancellor struggle to extricate himself from his national interests? If Germany has to review its fundamentals, from energy policy to its trade relations with China, while three parties are governing together in Berlin for the first time, the fact remains that Europe is moving away from more and more towards the East, leaving France to the countries of the South...

"The future, like the past, depends on the cooperation of our two countries, as the locomotive of a united Europe", declared the Chancellor,

who called the "Franco-German engine" a "compromise machine" for "transforming controversies and divergent interests into convergent action".




Joanne Courbet for DayNewsWorld

WILL BORIS PISTORIUS' GERMANY DELIVER LEOPARD TANKS TO UKRAINE ?

Germany has a new defense minister, a position particularly exposed in the context of the war in Ukraine. Boris Pistorius was appointed on Tuesday, thus entering the government.

On January 19, 2023, the German Chancellor, Olaf Schoz, indicated that his next Minister of Defense would be Boris Pistorius, then Social Democratic Minister of the Interior and Sports in the Lower Saxony state government.

He is a "highly experienced politician, who has been dealing with security policy for years", argued Mr. Scholz. He is, "thanks to his skills, his ability to impose himself and his big heart [...], exactly the right person to lead the Bundeswehr through this changing era", he added.

A seasoned regional elected official, this 62-year-old social democrat, almost unknown at the national level, replaces Christine Lambrecht who resigned on Monday after a series of blunders. Interior Minister of Lower Saxony since 2013, he is a "highly experienced politician, proven in administration, who has been dealing with security policy for years", said Chancellor Olaf Scholz.

A specialist in cybersecurity issues

Boris Pistorius is a lawyer by training and comes from the chancellor's political party. He specializes in issues of cybersecurity, homeland security and migration policy. In recent years, he had made no secret of his national ambitions. His attempt to accede to the presidency of the Social Democratic Party in 2019 had however failed. Then in 2021, he was considered a potential candidate for a ministerial post when the government was formed.

On Tuesday, he hailed a man who brings "a lot of experience in security", as well as the "strength and calm" necessary for the function. Mr. Pistorius said he accepted “with great pleasure” the mission offered by Olaf Scholz, promising to invest “150%”. Given the difficulty of the task, motivation was an essential prerequisite for this position. The Ministry of Defense is traditionally the unloved child of German politics.

RDV in Davos Thursday and Friday on Ukraine

Pistorius will very quickly be plunged into the deep end, with pressure being put on Berlin to deliver Leopard 2s to Ukraine.

The reshuffle comes as Germany comes under pressure from several allied countries, primarily Poland, to deliver German-made Leopard heavy tanks to kyiv.

Sweden has already decided to start delivering Archer model long-range guns to the Ukrainian army, a mobile and modern howitzer that kyiv has been asking for for many months, Swedish Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson announced on Thursday.

After a government meeting, the leader of the Nordic country announced at a press conference

"the first decision to start delivering Archer artillery systems to Ukraine" to help it against Russia.


This Wednesday the Secretary General of the Alliance Jens Stoltenberg had announced that the member countries of Russia.
A crucial meeting on the subject of Western defense ministers, around the United States, will also be held on Friday in Germany.

Boris Pistorius will also welcome US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin to Berlin on Thursday, just after taking office. Then he will continue with a Franco-German council of ministers.

"We will meet (Friday) in Ramstein (Germany) in the US-led Ukraine Contact Group and the main message will be increased support with heavier and more modern weapons," he said. he told the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

Change of time

Since the outbreak of war in Ukraine, the German Ministry of Defense has had to undergo a revolution, becoming one of the nerve centers of government action.

This is where the big project announced by Olaf Scholz during his speech on the "Zeitenwende" must materialize.

(the epoch change) on February 27, 2022, which ended decades of German defense and security restraint.

These are 100 billion euros of special funds which have been granted to the Bundeswehr, in order to compensate for more than two decades of under-investment in the defense apparatus.

But it is already clear that this sum will not be enough.

It is less a question of gaining power than of making up for glaring shortcomings – lack of ammunition, basic equipment, seriously dysfunctional equipment – ​​so that Germany can honor its international commitments and above all deal with new threats.

From there to providing Leonard tanks ?

A question that is the subject of debate within the government coalition. Pressure from some is increasing for Berlin to allow the delivery of these heavy tanks.

Russia plans to deploy a small number of its new T-14 Armata main battle tanks to Ukraine.

In addition, the Kremlin has warned that the delivery to Ukraine by the West of long-range weapons, capable of hitting Russian territory in depth, would lead to a dangerous aggravation of the armed conflict between kyiv and Moscow.

It is potentially very dangerous, it would mean that the conflict would reach a new level which would not promise anything good for European security, declared the spokesman of the Russian presidency, Dmitry Peskov.

Delivery of long-range weapons would lead to 'escalation', Kremlin warns


"Any desire to destroy Russia will mean the end of the world", thunders the sixteenth patriarch of Moscow and all Russia Kirill.




Alize Marion for DayNewsWorld

ITALY'S MOST WANTED MAFIO ARRESTED

AFTER 30 YEARS

The end of thirty years on the run.

In 2018, the Italian authorities attempted to crack down on the Trapani Mafia, but failed to get their hands on Matteo Messina Denaro.

Since 1993, the Sicilian Matteo Messina Denaro had been Italy's most wanted mobster. He was arrested in Palermo, Sicily, on Monday January 16. “Today, January 16, the carabinieri […] arrested the fugitive Matteo Messina Denaro inside a health facility in Palermo, where he had gone to undergo clinical therapies”, thus indicated the general from the Carabinieri Pasquale Angelosanto to the AGI agency.

Matteo Messina Denaro, 60, is considered the successor of the great historic leaders of Cosa Nostra, Toto Riina and Bernardo Provenzano, who died in prison in 2016 and 2017. On the Interior Ministry's list of the six most wanted criminals in Italy, this man, born in April 1962 near Trapani, in Sicily, occupies the first place.

A former Cosa Nostra trigger, he had been sentenced in absentia to life imprisonment for murder. But the only known photo of him dates back to the early 1990s.

For many years, hundreds of police and carabinieri had been involved in the hunt for Italy's most notorious fugitive. In vain, so important was his support network.

"After thirty years on the run, the superboss Matteo Messina Denaro has been arrested.

It is with great emotion that I thank the women and men of the State who have never given up, confirming the rule that sooner or later even the greatest criminals on the run are arrested", reacted on WhatsApp Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini.

"It's a beautiful day for Italy and serves as a warning to the mafia: the institutions and our heroes in uniform never give up," he concluded.




Britney Delsey for DayNewsWorld

INTENSIFICATION OF RUSSIAN MISSILE STRIKES AGAINST UKRAINE

OPERATIONS THAT TAKE PLACE

"EXACTLY AS EXPECTED" ACCORDING TO PUTIN

Russia unleashed another massive missile strike against Ukraine on Saturday January 14, 2023, the Orthodox New Year's Day, killing and injuring civilians and causing power outages. Relief is active in Dnipro in the rubble of a building hit on Saturday in Dnipro, where we currently deplore 21 dead and 73 injured.

kyiv and other regions in the south, north and east of the country were also the target on Saturday morning of new Russian missile fire targeting essential infrastructure, including electricity, according to Ukrainian officials.

Several explosions have indeed sounded in the morning in Kyiv, journalists have found, Ukrainian officials claiming that strikes had targeted key infrastructure in the capital. "A missile attack on critical infrastructure" is underway in Kyiv, Ukrainian presidential adviser Kyrylo Tymoshenko said on Telegram in the morning debate, while city mayor Vitali Klitschko reported explosions in the Dniprovskiy district , without reporting any injuries but calling on the inhabitants to "stay in the shelters".

Uncertain situation in Soledar

The fighting in and around Soledar has been raging for several months, but its intensity has increased sharply in recent days. On the front, the small town of Soledar, in eastern Ukraine, which Moscow claims to have taken, is still "under Ukrainian control", assured Saturday the governor of the Donetsk region, Pavlo Kyrylenko. Earlier, the Russian Defense Ministry said on Friday that the "liberation" of this city took place "on January 12 in the evening". The Russian army had also praised the "courageous actions" of the fighters of the Wagner mercenary group, whose men led "the direct assault against the residential areas of Soledar". Its capture by the forces of Moscow would constitute a notable victory for Russia, after the series of

“Today, the enemy again fired against energy installations,” said operator Ukrenergo, adding that it was working to “eliminate the consequences” of these strikes.

Energy production facilities affected

"Emergency cuts have been decided in most regions," Ukrainian Energy Minister German Galouchchenko announced on Saturday evening. Russian strikes hit the country's energy production facilities, notably in the regions of Kharkiv, Lviv, Ivano- Frankivsk, Zaporijjia, Vinnytsia and Kiev.

The operator Ukrenergo, for its part, said it was working to "eliminate the consequences" of this "twelfth massive missile attack on the energy sector in Ukraine".

“A positive dynamic” according to Putin

While the communication battle is in full swing, the Russian president, in an interview this Sunday, was questioned on the tarmac of an airport, near the presidential plane. He was answering the question of a journalist from the Rossia-1 channel asking him about the "news coming from Soledar", which the Russian army said on Friday that it had conquered. Russian President Vladimir Putin said he found "positive dynamics" in the military operation his country is pursuing in Ukraine and the Donbass.

“I hope that our fighters will still delight us more than once with their military results,” Putin also said in his interview. The Russian leader added that the operation is going “exactly as planned” during an interview with the Rossiya-1 television channel. Raising conscription from 27 to 30 years in Russia would increase the number of Russian forces by 30%.

In addition to have a superior firepower, according to British intelligence, Russia plans to raise the age of conscription from 27 to 30 years in the spring. According to the chairman of the Duma, Kartapolov, this would allow a 30% increase in the number of Russian forces. Last year, President Putin said he supported such a move. In addition Vladimir Putin, this Wednesday, announced that the chief of staff of the Russian army Valéri Guerassimov was resuming military operations in Ukraine, only three months after the appointment of Sergei Surovikin to this post.

The experts converge to see in this decision the sign of an acceleration of the Russian operation. An offensive has been discussed for several months and the possibility of a new mobilization is not excluded, after a first in September of some 300,000 men.

Whether or not to supply tanks to Ukraine

To face the Russian armada, kyiv has again called on its Western allies to provide it with more weapons and high-performance military equipment.

In response, the United Kingdom announced that it wanted to supply Ukraine with Challenger 2 tanks, the first Western-made heavy armored vehicles. The British announcement - "a good signal" according to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky - comes after Poland said it was ready on Wednesday to deliver 14 Leopard 2 heavy tanks, which requires Berlin's approval, as part of an international coalition. Their number is not specified, but the United Kingdom thus becomes the first country to commit to providing this type of battle tank to help Ukraine against Russian forces. kyiv had already received Soviet-designed heavy tanks from its allies, but none yet of Western manufacture.

Washington and London, for their part, announced last week the dispatch of lighter infantry or reconnaissance tanks.

The German government for its part announced in early January that it would supply Ukraine with around 40 Marder infantry fighting vehicles before the end of the first quarter to fight Russian forces, but it still seems reluctant to deliver heavy tanks. , even if the Minister of the Economy, Robert Habeck, said last weekend "not to exclude" this option. On the other hand, the German arms manufacturer Rheinmetall could not supply Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine before 2024 at the earliest, the time to proceed with their repair, if the government in Berlin decided to deliver them to kyiv. warns the boss of the group in the columns of the Bild.

Turkey calls for ' localized ceasefires '

As the fighting rages, Turkey, diplomatically, wants to promote "localized ceasefires" in Ukraine because of hope for a more comprehensive peace agreement at this stage, said Saturday Ibrahim Kalin, close adviser of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Neither Russia nor Ukraine "is in a position to win militarily", he also considered, saying he was convinced "that in the end, they will have to negotiate to reach an acceptable outcome" for the two parts

But the day before the UN Security Council, meeting again to discuss the situation in Ukraine, noted that there was, according to the UN Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs, Rosemary DiCarlo, “no sign of an end to the fighting”.

Still, it would be wise to continue negotiations...even as the fighting continues to kill civilians.




Joanne Courbet for DayNewsWorld

ORTHODOX CHRISTMAS

PUTIN ALONE IN A KEMLIN CHURCH

The Russian president followed the celebration in the Cathedral of the Annunciation, originally designed as a church for the tsars, led by priests in golden albs, some of whom held candelabras, according to images released by the Kremlin.

In previous years, Vladimir Putin used to attend religious services for Orthodox Christmas in Russian provinces or on the outskirts of Moscow.

In a message broadcast on Saturday January 7, 2023 by the Kremlin, the Russian President sent his congratulations to Orthodox Christians, indicating that this day inspires “good deeds and aspirations”.

He also said to pray for the Orthodox Church.

Twelve percent of Christians around the world are also preparing to celebrate the birth of Christ on January 7. Indeed, 260 million Orthodox Christians, whether they live in Russia or Greece where they are the majority, or in communities in Ethiopia and Egypt in particular, are preparing to celebrate their own Christmas.

Marked by pious vigils and traditional feasts, this particular version of Christmas has its origins in the decision taken several centuries ago by the Orthodox authorities to separate from the Catholic Church and to adopt a calendar different from that used by the majority of humans today.

Commemoration of the Birth of Jesus Christ or the Great Eastern Schism

Disagreements over when to officially commemorate the birth of Jesus Christ date back to 325 CE. On this date, a group of Christian bishops convened the first ecumenical council of Christianity in order to decide on certain questions of religious doctrine.

One of the most important items on the agenda of the First Council of Nicaea was the standardization of the date of the Church's most important feast: Easter. To this end, it was decided to model it on the Julian calendar, a solar calendar that the pontifex maximus Julius Caesar had adopted in 46 BC. J.-C. on the advice of the Egyptian astronomer Sosigene of Alexandria in order to put order in the lunar calendar then in force in Rome.

But Sosigenes' calculations contained an error: they overestimated the length of the solar year by about eleven minutes. Consequently, the calendar year and the solar year became more out of sync as the centuries passed.

The Julian Calendar

In 1582, the dates of the main Christian festivals were so shifted that Pope Gregory XIII had to intervene. He summoned another group of astronomers and proposed a new calendar: the Gregorian calendar.

This solved a number of delicate problems that had accumulated over the years, and the majority of the Christian world adopted it.

But the Orthodox Church did not hear it that way. Since 1054 and the Great Eastern Schism, the result of centuries of growing political and doctrinal tensions, it had formed its own branch of Christianity. Orthodox Christians do not recognize the pope as head of the Church, they reject the concept of purgatory, and they disagree about the origin of the Holy Spirit, among other differences.

To adopt the rectification of trajectory proposed by Pope Gregory, it was necessary to accept that Passover and Easter overlap from time to time, which is proscribed by the holy texts of Orthodox Christianity. The Orthodox Church therefore rejected the Gregorian calendar and continued to follow the Julian calendar.

The Russian Orthodox Church celebrates Christmas on January 7.

Patriarch Kirill on Thursday called on Moscow and Kyiv to establish a ceasefire in Ukraine on the occasion of the Orthodox Christmas holiday. In the process, Vladimir Putin announced Thursday a unilateral ceasefire for 36 hours.

The influential leader of the Orthodox Church fully supported the offensive of the Russian armed forces in Ukraine decided by Vladimir Putin.

Church organizations “support our soldiers who are taking part in a special military operation,” the Russian president said, using the official Kremlin term for the offensive in Ukraine.

“Such tremendous, multi-faceted, and truly ascetic work deserves the sincerest respect,” he added.

Patriarch Kirill called on believers to support pro-Russian “brothers” during the Russian offensive in eastern Ukraine. Since the start of the offensive in Ukraine on February 24, he has delivered sermons in which he gave his blessing to the Russian troops while castigating the Ukrainian authorities.

In a sermon last year, he said that dying in Ukraine “washes away all sins”.

Recently the Ukrainian Orthodox Church separated from the Patriarchate of Moscow (Russia). On May 27, 2022, at the end of an extraordinary synod, the Church indeed proclaimed its total independence from the Moscow Patriarchate by changing its statutes.

Among the reasons given is the position taken by Patriarch Kyrill of Moscow, encouraging the Russian invasion of Ukraine from February 2022.




Alyson Braxton for DayNewsWorld

THE SHAMELESS LIES OF POWER

ON ELECTRICITY PRICES

AND ON NUCLEAR POWER IN FRANCE

The President of the Republic wanted to reassure the French about potential power cuts, while explaining that it was not necessary to panic and that it was only a question for the government of preparing "an extreme case", thus suggesting that the probabilities of large cuts were low.

However, for Philippe Murer, economist, specialist in the environment and energy, “it is almost certain that we will have electricity shortages lasting several days in France. Also, this period will be synonymous with strong restrictions for European populations, according to the economist who recalls that our leaders, by their decisions, sometimes their absence of decisions, are responsible for the current situation: "Our politicians do not know how to solve the problems, because they make communication, they never work in the concrete. »

he argues on the FranceSoir set of April 14, 2022. To Loïk Le Floch-Prigent to add in an interview on Atlantico: “As a former boss of GDF, I can tell you, the government plan in the face of the risk of power cuts is not one".

“Do you realize that we are in the 21st century, in the 6th world power, and that we are being told that we are going to return to the Stone Age because we will no longer have electricity? “, In particular criticized the president of the RN group in the National Assembly, Thursday, December 8, on RTL. And it's not wrong. France is indeed one of the countries most at risk for this winter. However, she is not the only one.

"It's European economic suicide" Philippe Murer

The report of the European Association of Electricity Transmission System Operators (ENTSO-e) published at the beginning of December explains that "the European electricity system is under greater tension than in other years" and this, due to "exceptional circumstances such as the war in Ukraine.

The organization relies in particular on the results of several simulations. Thus, it estimates that in the scenario of “normal demand”, France would indeed be one of the countries most affected.

“Energy curfew” in Italy

Concrètement, le rapport indique que nous pourrions manquer de 20 heures d'électricité pour couvrir tous nos besoins cet hiver. Mais l'Irlande est également ciblée. D'après le rapport de l'ENTSO-e, c'est le 2e pays le plus à risque juste derrière la France puisque les Irlandais pourraient manquer d'un peu plus de 14 heures d'électricité. La Suède et la Finlande pourraient également rencontrer des difficultés, principalement à cause d'une plus faible production issue du nucléaire et des conséquences de la guerre en Ukraine.

Beyond this report, many countries have also prepared more or less severe plans in the event of a lack of electricity. In the United Kingdom, for example, as early as October the main energy supplier warned the British that in the event of a shortage, they could be without power until 3 a.m. on certain weekday evenings, between 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. . In Italy too, the government has already prepared minds and anticipated a possible “energy curfew”. Thus, stores could in particular be forced to close an hour earlier.

We are replaying the Covid a bit in this story.

The operation of companies, services or industries will suffer: if consumption drops, this means a drop in production, the shutdown of factories as well as bakers' ovens or butchers' fridges, and this is not good news because it is the decline, the deindustrialization and not only the end of abundance but that of the prosperity of the country which is based on its agricultural and industrial production... a real "European economic suicide"

European carelessness

However, if the energy market has not been hit by such a powerful shock for more than half a century, it is not the war in Ukraine which is at the origin of this danger, but the European carelessness added to French carelessness.

Government propaganda asserts that the war in Ukraine, which multiplies by five the price of gas in Europe, should (according to RTE, an appendix of the executive) lead in France to a rise in the price of electricity by 35%.

But in its generosity, the French government has put in place a “shield” which will limit this increase to 4% in 2022, and 15% in 2023. . In reality, a fivefold increase in the price of European gas has only a very limited effect, practically negligible, on the cost of production of our electricity, as reported by a specialist at our colleague whose analysis follows.

“The reasons for the cost of producing our electricity

They are at least four in number.

The first is that the weight of gas electricity in the French electricity mix is ​​low: 6% in 2021. Most of our electricity is of nuclear, hydraulic and renewable origin. The production costs of these forms of electricity are completely independent of the gas and its price. The cost of 94% of our electricity production is in no way affected by a rise in the price of gas.

The second reason is that (for these 6%) the cost of the fuel (the gas) represents only 10% of the cost of producing electricity using gas. The rest corresponds to the cost of capital, salaries, maintenance, all expenses which are obviously unrelated to the price of gas and its evolution.

The third reason is that for electricity in general and therefore also for gas-fired electricity, the cost of production only accounts for 50% (48% exactly) of the price paid in France by the household or business. The other half of this cost consists of marketing, transportation, distribution and tax expenses. These expenses and taxes are also completely independent of the price of gas.

Finally, the gas imported and used in France (to produce electricity and for other uses) is only 17% Russian. The price of Norwegian or Qatari gas that we consume is not directly affected by the war in Ukraine and the embargo on Russian gas. However, it can be argued that it is indirect, insofar as there are world or regional gas markets.

Putin's embargo on gas sales to Europe may have contributed to a fivefold increase in gas prices but certainly not led to a dramatic threat of a 35% increase in electricity prices in France.

European carelessness...

What turns this small +1.5% into a terrible +35%?

The European market is a rent factory

To understand this, you have to look at Brussels rather than Moscow.

There was a time when the price at which EDF sold electricity in France (we said: the tariff) was equal to the average cost of production of this electricity by EDF (plus an honest dividend paid by EDF to the State ). When these costs fell, tariffs fell, as happened during the period 1988-2008. Since these costs were largely capital costs, the rates were reasonably stable.

But “ideologists who idolize the market and Europe have postulated that a market was always preferable to a monopoly and that Europe was always preferable to France. They replaced an enlightened French monopoly with an unsuitable European market. »

Simplifying a complex system, we can say that the current price of European electricity is equal to the marginal cost of electricity in Europe, which is in practice the marginal cost of Russian gas electricity in Germany. When Putin's Russia reduces or ceases its gas deliveries to Germany, the price of gas in Germany jumps, dragging down the price of electricity in Germany and by contagion elsewhere in Europe and therefore in France.

What a boon for all infra-marginal electricity producers! They produce their electricity (nuclear or even renewable) at its usual cost and sell it at this European price, pocketing extravagant profits. In theory, a market, a functioning market of course, eliminates rents; in reality, the European electricity market generates rents.

The appearance of this rent has little to do with Putin.

The embargo of Russian President Putin, as we have seen, causes a 1.5% increase in the cost of electricity in France, which would have, in the time of EDF, led to an increase in the price of this order of magnitude . It is the European electricity market that generates an additional increase of 33.5%, leading to the 35% increase estimated by RTE.

Where does this European market come from? It was forged and set up on the initiative of the European Commission, with the support of the European Parliament, in decisions taken by European ministerial councils. »

...to French negligence since the Holland years

French nuclear power has missed the opportunity to stand out as the tool for energy independence and available and inexpensive current.

Indeed, the so-called “Energy-Climate” law of 2019 sealed the fate of these power plants: all were to be shut down in 2022 and their operation strictly limited in the meantime. Those responsible for this exit from the road are for the occasion the last two Presidents of the Republic, Hollande and Macron, both of whom, under pressure from the green lobby, will have had no rest, or almost, only to please him.

Very imprudent decisions, but the wise decision-makers of the time are still in power, better still, in the same niches: the only visible urgency was to precipitate a bill on the acceleration of the construction of wind and solar installations which we knows that in the best of the cases they will have no result on the problem posed by the next winters since the wind and the sun, intermittent, do not meet the needs especially in January/February at the times when one could wish it!!

In France, however, it is nuclear power and hydropower that have accounted for more than 87% of consumption for twenty years, so this is where the problem must be dealt with so as not to panic for the coming winters, and it is the action that reassures, not the word, asserts Loïk Le Floch-Prigent

However, the number of nuclear reactors currently shut down (twenty-seven out of fifty-six) is worrying, it is also worrying for professionals in the sector who have to take up a major challenge for the country's economy and its citizens, and for the credibility of their industrial tool.

And we are not even preparing for the future since after closing the Astrid program in 2019, that of fast neutron generators (RNR), the 4th nuclear generation, the one that uses waste, we don't even talk about it anymore while all our competitors are making great strides. Yves Bréchet, member of the Academy of Sciences, whose hearing before the parliamentary commission of inquiry aimed at shedding light on the reasons that presided over the loss of France's energy sovereignty, delivers a statement in the form of an indictment without appeal.

On the termination of the "Astrid" program, the objective of which was to develop the new generation of reactors of the future, a decision recorded in 2018, the former head of the CEA evokes "a decision emblematic of the disappearance of the strategist State and the transition from a strategist state to a talkative state”...

To stem the ten years of mistakes of the successive governments of François Hollande and Emmanuel Macron, we must, like Spain and Portugal, distance ourselves from the straitjacket of the European energy market.


"We also need to resume the virtuous path of increasing controllable power plants, i.e. nuclear power plants, and hydroelectricity as a priority and imagine the success of our reindustrialization with abundant, cheap and sovereign."



Alize Marion for DayNewsWorld

"QATARGATE" A CORRUPTION SCANDAL

WITHIN THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT

The European Parliament was in shock on Monday, forced to react strongly after the imprisonment of the Greek elected Eva Kaili, a vice-president, charged with corruption in a case linked to Qatar which threatens to tarnish the image of the institution

The Union's foreign ministers, who met on Monday in Brussels, expressed their concerns. The German minister, the green Annalena Baerbock, affirmed that "the full force of the law" must take precedence in the file. "Europe's credibility is at stake," she added, as the European Parliament has been harshly criticizing corrupt practices in Hungary for months. Viktor Orban, the Hungarian Prime Minister who has been giving his counterparts a hard time for months on issues of the rule of law, did not fail to publish a sarcastic tweet on the initiatives of MEPs against corruption in his country.

What happened

Ms. Kaili and three other people were imprisoned in Brussels on Sunday, two days after being arrested as part of an investigation into large payments of money allegedly made by the host country of the World Cup-2022 to influence European policy. .

Indeed for 48 hours, the walls of the European Parliament have been shaking and a face embodies the scandal, that of the Greek vice-president Eva Kaili who slept in prison on Sunday evening. Former television star presenter, she was arrested Friday evening with several bags of tickets.

Would it have been paid in exchange for political favor towards Qatar? On social networks, Eva Kaili has never hidden her closeness to the emirate. Former television presenter aged 44, Eva Kaili, MEP since 2014 and elected in January 2022 to one of the vice-presidencies of the European Parliament, went to Qatar in early November where she greeted, in the presence of the Minister Qatari Labor, the emirate's reforms in this sector. In Parliament, a few days before the World Cup, she made this speech

“The World Cup in Qatar shows how sports diplomacy leads to the historic transformation of a country. Qatar is a leader in labor law”.

In this case, she is not alone. His father was arrested with a suitcase worth thousands of euros. He was imprisoned. His companion, the Italian Francesco Giorgi, former parliamentary assistant, specialist in human rights and foreign affairs, seven years his junior, was also arrested. In a relationship for five years, they have a two-year-old daughter. Among the other suspects, a former MEP, an Italian trade union leader and a Belgian MEP, a vast alleged network of corruption.

The police seized nearly a million euros in cash according to our information.

Eva Kaili did not benefit from her parliamentary immunity because the offense was found "in flagrante delicto", explained a Belgian judicial source, specifying that "bags of tickets" were discovered in the apartment of the elected Greek socialist.

The council chamber will have to rule on his continued detention, as on that of the three other people imprisoned, within five days.

Assets of Eva Kaili frozen -

Eva Kaili was expelled on Friday evening from the Greek Socialist Party (Pasok-Kinal) of which she was already a controversial figure. His assets were frozen on Monday by the Greek Anti-Money Laundering Authority.

The vice-president of the European Parliament, the Greek Eva Kaili, is a former television presenter, who has become a controversial figure in the Greek socialist party. The 44-year-old elected socialist saw her delegations as vice-president of the European assembly suspended on Saturday, less than eleven months after her election to this post, due to the investigation launched by the Belgian prosecutor's office.

Entry into politics at age 20

The neatly dressed Greek MEP, with long blond hair and piercing gaze, was for a time perceived in her native country as a rising star of the socialist Pasok-Kinal party.

Originally from Thessaloniki, the second city of Greece, Eva Kaili entered politics at the age of 20: an architecture student, she became a municipal councilor there in 1998. With her architecture degree in hand, she embarked on studies of international and European relations and took journalism courses.

News presenter on a major Greek channel

The Greeks then discovered her on their television screen: she presented the newspapers on one of the major private channels, Mega, from 2004 to 2007. That year, at only 29 years old, she was elected to the Greek Parliament. She is then the youngest member of Pasok. In 2014, she was elected to the European Parliament in the Socialists and Democrats (S&D) group, a mandate which she retained in the 2019 European elections.

In January 2022, she was elected Vice-President of the European Parliament in the first round. Eva Kaili was part of the delegation aimed at developing the relations of the European Union with the Arab peninsula. In this context, she had gone to Qatar shortly before the start of the World Cup.

Shaken European institutions

The shock wave of the corruption scandal in the European Parliament, revealed over the weekend, spread to all the EU institutions on Monday when the monthly plenary session of MEPs began in Strasbourg.

First and foremost, of course, in the European Parliament. At the end of the afternoon, the president, Roberta Metsola, gave a solemn speech, taking care not to interfere with the ongoing investigations - the Belgian police carried out new raids on Monday in Brussels. "European democracy is under attack," said the Maltese, expressing her "fury, anger and sadness".

She promised that "nothing will be put under the carpet" and urged the parliamentary groups not to exploit the scandal, already called "Qatargate", for political purposes. “We will launch a reform process to see who has access to our premises, how these organizations, NGOs and people are financed, what links they have with third countries, we will ask for more transparency on meetings with foreign actors”, she added.

Qatar, organizer of the world football, denied being behind this operation of interference.

Europe's credibility

We already know one of the main flaws: MEPs are not obliged to register their meetings with representatives of third countries in the "EU transparency register", while many hostile powers seek to infiltrate the assembly and interfere with the decision-making process of the EU.

New authority

At the European Commission too, we say we are "stunned" by the "Qatargate". During a press conference devoted to the EU's energy supply, Ursula von der Leyen considered that this affair jeopardized “the confidence of Europeans in our institutions. This trust requires higher standards of independence and integrity”.

The President of the Commission reiterated a proposal she had already made: the creation of an independent ethics authority “which would cover all institutions in a uniform manner”.

In 2011, the European Parliament was shaken by another scandal when three MEPs and former ministers - Romanian, Austrian and Slovenian - were trapped by journalists from the weekly Sunday Times posing as lobbyists. They had agreed to table amendments on European bills, in particular in the banking sector, in exchange for remuneration of up to 100,000 euros.

They were all three sentenced by the courts of their country to sentences ranging from two and a half to four years in prison....




Joanne Courbet for DayNewsWorld

KREMLIN ACCORDS THEIR OFFENSIVE IN UKRAINE WILL BE CONCLUDED BY "A SUCCESS"

Dimitri Peskov, the Kremlin spokesman, remains positive when asked about his feelings on the course of the conflict which has lasted for nine months now.
The Kremlin claimed that their offensive in Ukraine was going to be "successful" despite setbacks on the battlefield.

Ukrainian soldiers have indeed reconquered the Kherson region after the retreat from Moscow on November 11, marking the third blow for Russia, after the withdrawal of its troops from the north in April, then from Kharkiv in September.

Dmitry Peskov, however, said during a visit to Armenia:
"The future and success of the special operation are beyond doubt."

And to Maria Zakharova, the spokesperson for the Russian Foreign Ministry,
"I propose to appoint the European Parliament as sponsor of idiocy".

Furthermore, Vladimir Putin should announce a second general mobilization in the country in order to inject new blood into his army.

Winter is becoming the Russians' new weapon against the Ukrainians
According to the Ukrainian Air Force, Russia fired 70 missiles at the country, of which 51 were shot down.
The attack killed several people, notably in kyiv, the capital.

It also caused emergency power outages and interrupted water supplies in several cities, such as Lviv in the west of the country. Ukraine, in particular its capital kyiv, remains largely without electricity and running water this Thursday afternoon, the day after new massive strikes by Russia specifically targeting energy infrastructure.

In kyiv, hit by freezing rain that fell on snow, around 70% of the population remained without power on Thursday morning, according to the town hall, while the water supply was restored in the early afternoon, so that the temperatures barely exceeded zero degrees.


In Kharkiv, "electricity supply problems" persisted,
Russia, for its part, has promised to send the country back to the 18th century, that is, without water, without heating and without energy resources. "Ukraine will return to the 18th century".



Steven Colton for DayNewsWorld

WHY IS KHERSON RETURNING

UNDER THE CONTROL OF UKRAINE

AND DO THE RUSSIAN MILITARY SURRENDER ?

The Ukrainian army entered this Friday, November 11 in Kherson, a key city in the south of the country, after the withdrawal of Russian forces, said the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense. “Kherson is returning to Ukrainian control, Ukrainian Armed Forces units are entering the city,” the ministry said on Facebook.

The ministry called on the Russian soldiers remaining on the spot to "surrender immediately", promising to "preserve life and safety" to those who do so. “Any Russian soldier who puts up resistance will be eliminated. You have only one chance to avoid death: surrender immediately,” he pressed on Facebook. The Ukrainian parliament, the Verkhovna Rada, for its part relayed on Telegram photos of civilians waving Ukrainian flags in Kherson.

Moscow announced a little earlier that it had completed the withdrawal of its troops from this territory. In total, more than 30,000 Russian soldiers have withdrawn to the Kherson region by leaving the right bank of the Dnieper River and deploying on the left, the Russian army announced on Friday. A major setback for the forces of Vladimir Putin, a month after claiming the annexation of the Oblast and losing the Kharkiv region in the northeast. The news had been received without triumphalism, and with circumspection, by kyiv, which suspected an ambush. Volodymyr Zelensky reacted on Wednesday with “extreme caution”.

Ukrainian diplomacy today hails an "important victory" in the face of this third major withdrawal of the Russian army, which "proves that whatever Russia says or does, Ukraine will win", the minister said on Twitter. Ukrainian Foreign Affairs, Dmytro Kouleba. Ukrainian forces had, in recent days, made several important advances and recaptured several localities around Kherson.

Despite this huge defeat for Russia, the Kremlin spokesman estimated on November 10 that the area remains “a subject of the Russian Federation”. The Russian president had warned in September that he would defend "by all means" what he considers to be Russian territories, brandishing the threat of recourse to nuclear weapons.

In Mykolaiv, five Ukrainians killed by a Russian strike

About 100 kilometers northwest of Kherson, in the large southern city of Mykolaiv, at least five people were killed and several injured overnight from Thursday to Friday in a missile strike on a residential building, according to regional authorities. The balance sheet is provisional. "In a cynical response by the terrorist state to our successes on the front, a strike hit a five-storey building, completely destroyed," the head of the regional administration said on Telegram.

On the eastern front, the fighting also continues to rage, particularly in Bakhmout, a city that Moscow has been trying to conquer since the summer and the main battlefield where the Russian army, supported by the men of the paramilitary group Wagner, stay on the offensive.

The United States announces an additional 400 million for Ukraine

Given Russia's "relentless and brutal airstrikes on critical civilian infrastructure in Ukraine, additional air defense capabilities are paramount," the Pentagon said Friday (November 11th). To do this, the United States has announced that it will provide additional missiles for the defense of kyiv, for a total value of some 400 million dollars.

This new tranche of aid includes four Avenger short-range anti-aircraft systems, an unspecified number of Stinger and Hawk missiles, as well as shells and missiles for Himars precision artillery systems.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky thanked Joe Biden. This new aid brings to more than 18.6 billion dollars the military assistance of the United States to Ukraine since the beginning of the Russian offensive, on February 24. On Wednesday, November 9, the American Chief of Staff, Mark Milley, had nevertheless hoped for talks to end the war, a military victory being, according to him, not possible for either Russia or Ukraine.

Seoul denies supporting Ukraine militarily via the United States

South Korea denied on Friday that it sold artillery shells to the United States for Ukrainian forces. The Wall Street Journal had revealed the day before that Washington was close to reaching an agreement to purchase 100,000 155mm artillery shells from Seoul, which would then be delivered to kyiv, citing "officials Americans familiar with the case.

For its part, Seoul insists that if the current negotiation is finalized, the ammunition will be intended for American forces only. In a statement, the South Korean government clarified that the "South Korean policy of not supplying lethal weapons to Ukraine remains unchanged". The goal for the country is to preserve its ties with Russia, a key intermediary with the North.

EU will no longer recognize Russian passports from Ukraine

Holders of Russian passports issued in the Ukrainian regions of Donetsk, Lugansk, Zaporizhia and Kherson, unilaterally annexed by Russia in September, will no longer be recognized in the European Union and will no longer be able to enter the Schengen area. This is also the case of Crimea, annexed in 2014 by Moscow, as well as pro-Russian separatist regions in Georgia, Abkhazia and South Ossetia, recognized as independent only by Russia.

The American fear of a generalized nuclear conflict.

After eight months of intense fighting in Ukraine which saw the Ukrainians begin to regain the advantage over Russian forces, the United States now appears to be pushing for the two sides to return to the path of negotiations. At the start of the week, several "leaks" in the American press went in this direction. Monday, we learned in the Wall Street Journal that Jake Sullivan, national security adviser of the United States, had recently spoken, and on several occasions, with two senior Russian officials who have "the ear of President" Putin . About these discussions: the American desire that the Ukrainian crisis does not turn into a general nuclear conflict.

Secret channel between Washington and Moscow

In fact, behind the communication postures of each other, the discussions between the two nuclear superpowers that are the United States and Russia have never been broken since the start of the war last February. Thus, a secret channel has been set up in recent months between the two countries, bypassing the head of diplomacy Antony Blinken, head of the State Department (the Ministry of Foreign Affairs) in Washington.

Monday, we learned in the Wall Street Journal that Jake Sullivan, national security adviser of the United States, had recently spoken, and on several occasions, with two senior Russian officials who have "the ear of President" Putin .

The day after the publication of the Wall Street Journal article, it was the Washington Post's turn to explain that the same Jake Sullivan had gone to kyiv in recent days to convince Volodymyr Zelensky not to close the door to possible negotiations. The Americans wanted to make the Ukrainians understand that they could no longer demand the departure of Vladimir Putin from power as a prerequisite for any start of discussions.

“A window of opportunity for negotiation” between Moscow and Kyiv

Clearly, Joe Biden is pushing President Zelensky to declare that Ukraine is open to negotiations with Russia so as not to appear as a blocking factor: "The fatigue of certain allies towards Ukraine is a reality", thus declared anonymously a US official at the Washington Post. If these words are intended to be benevolent, we are indeed witnessing a big pressure blow from Washington on kyiv, according to the analysis of the journalist Endeweld that we take up.

A few days after the publication of these articles, it was Joe Biden himself who declared: “We have to see if Ukraine is ready to compromise”. This statement comes just after the midterm elections.

A few days after the publication of these articles, it was Joe Biden himself who declared: “We have to see if Ukraine is ready to compromise”. This statement comes just after the midterm elections, which saw the Democrats resist much better than expected against the Republicans led by Donald Trump. At the same time, the Chief of the American Armed Forces, General Mark Milley, announced that there was “a window of opportunity for negotiation” between Moscow and kyiv. We are a long way from the warlike declarations of last spring against Vladimir Putin.

It's that we are a few days away from the G20 summit which is to meet in Bali.

The organizing country, Indonesia, has also called for “resolving our differences at the negotiating table, not on the battlefield”. According to an off-the-record source, the Americans are today anxious to contain the wind of anti-Americanism which is blowing outside the West regarding the war in Ukraine. To the point that the idea of ​​a meeting between Joe Biden and Vladimir Putin on the occasion of the G20 has been mentioned in recent days. An aborted project, because the master of the Kremlin preferred to give up traveling to Bali, instead sending his head of diplomacy, Sergei Lavrov, to represent him

A wind of anti-Americanism

And as Russian troops retreat to the Kherson region, Putin continues to flex his muscles in his speeches recently explaining that Russia has "not yet started the serious business". Next Monday, however, a decisive meeting between the two greatest world leaders, Xi Jinping and Joe Biden, is announced in Bali.


"It is that behind the scenes of the war in Ukraine, at a time when we are starting to talk about peace negotiations against a backdrop of arm wrestling between Biden and Zelensky, there is also a deaf battle being played out over the future. civil nuclear power and the influence of American and Russian manufacturers in this key sector."



Pamela Newton for DayNewsWorld

RISHI SUNAK CONSIDERS "VERY HARSH DECISIONS"

TO FACE MAJOR CHALLENGES

The new British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, appointed by King Charles III on Tuesday, inherits a fractured country and losing confidence. Major challenges lie ahead.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak inherits a kneeling British economy and an explosive social situation.

Tackling the economic and social crisis

For months, the country has been going through hardships. The pandemic, the impact of Brexit which took effect in January 2021, the war in Ukraine, soaring energy and food costs, and its corollary rising poverty with millions of Britons drowning in bills .

To this was added political chaos, with the scandals of Boris Johnson's government and recently the storm caused by the "mini-budget" of the ephemeral Prime Minister Liz Truss. This colossal plan, combining tax cuts and aid for energy bills, scared away investors and precipitated the fall of the conservative leader.

Former Chancellor of the Exchequer of Boris Johnson, Rishi Sunak comes from the business world that he will have to work to reassure. The new Prime Minister has already slashed the ambitious promises of Liz Truss. He is working on a medium-term budget plan for October 31, which should announce cuts in public spending and possible tax increases, which could notably target the energy and banking sectors.

While Rishi Sunak has announced 'very tough decisions' to come, the specter of austerity now hangs over the UK, a pill that could be bitter to swallow from the wealthy Rishi Sunak, whose wife is heir to one of the greatest Indian fortunes.

Gather the Conservative Party

The United Kingdom and the Conservative Party which has ruled the country for twelve years are weakened by strong political instability. No less than five Conservative Prime Ministers have succeeded each other since 2016.

Today, the "Tories" seem more divided than ever. Boris Johnson fell in July after losing the confidence of around 60 members of his government. Liz Truss, who remained in post for only 44 days, never managed to convince her colleagues.

A majority of Conservative MPs supported Rishi Sunak's candidacy, which seems to give him strong legitimacy. But for the many supporters of Boris Johnson, the new Prime Minister drags the reputation of traitor. He had indeed slammed the door of the government in early July, then followed by around sixty colleagues, forcing "BoJo" to resign after

Known for having had strained relations with his finance minister, Boris Johnson, who renounced a “comeback” at 10 Downing Street, nevertheless sent his “congratulations” to Rishi Sunak on Tuesday for his accession to power in this historic day.

Solve the Northern Irish puzzle

Brexit supporter Rishi Sunak will have to manage the thorny issue of post-Brexit provisions in Northern Ireland, a British province bordering the Republic of Ireland, a member of the European Union.

London has introduced a bill to unilaterally reverse certain key measures of this agreement, denounced by unionists attached to remaining within the United Kingdom. Rishi Sunak has already expressed his support for this bill, but Brussels is threatening trade retaliation.

The situation there is tense. The political life of the province is blocked, without executive or Assembly. However, if the local deputies do not sit by Friday, October 28, legislative elections will have to be organized in mid-December.


The last elections gave the winner to Sinn Fein, a party in favor of the reunification of the two Irelands.

Alyson Braxton for DayNewsWorld

GIORGIA MELONI SILENCED

BAD LANGUAGES

IN HIS GENERAL POLICY SPEECH

The new Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni presents her general policy speech to Parliament on Tuesday morning, October 25, one month to the day after the historic victory of her post-fascist party Fratelli d'Italia in the legislative elections. Giorgia Meloni "is in the process of putting the finishing touches to the speech she will deliver before the Chamber of Deputies (...) Her intention is to define a programmatic framework (...) with the aim of implementing the commitments made among Italians during the electoral campaign,” government sources said on Monday evening.

Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni gave her general policy speech to Italian MPs on Tuesday, October 25, one month to the day after the concern aroused by the historic victory of her post-fascist party Fratelli d'Italia in the legislative elections.

The speech by Meloni, the first female head of government in Italian history who took office on Sunday, will be followed by a vote of confidence on Tuesday evening in the Chamber of Deputies and Wednesday in the Senate. The successor to Mario Draghi, to whom she also paid tribute, is sure to win confidence since her coalition has an absolute majority in both chambers.

In her speech, the Prime Minister notably anchored her country within the European Union and NATO and developed her program in economic matters and on migrants.

Italy is "fully part of Europe"...

Italy is "fully part of Europe and the Western world", the new Prime Minister forcefully affirmed. Giorgia Meloni explained that the Italian approach was not to “hinder and sabotage European integration” but to make the Community machine work better. "Italy will respect the rules" European, she also assured, even if Rome also wants "to help change those that do not work". The EU is "a common house to face the challenges that member states can hardly face alone", she added, judging that the EU has not done enough in this area in the past.

While it is likely that Italy's need for European funds and the current fragmentation policy pursued by the ECB (to limit speculation of which the most indebted countries would be victims) will have the effect of forcing the new government to play the game, the latter will not fail in the medium term to block any reform of the European treaties which could give Europe more leeway (among other things, the extension of the number of areas where qualified majority voting would replace unanimously).

It is also certain that a government founded around the IDF will continue to fan the embers of a nationalism of national values ​​and preferences by reproaching Europe for its normativism and its definition of the rule of law, which it would like to impose to all in defiance of national values ​​and cultures.

"a reliable NATO partner"

The Fratelli d'Italia leader, who has pro-Russian partners in her coalition, including Lega chief Matteo Salvini and Forza Italia leader Silvio Berlusconi, promised that Italy would remain "a reliable partner of the NATO in support of Ukraine which opposes Russian aggression”.

"Caving in to (Russian President Vladimir) Putin's energy blackmail would not solve the problem, it would make it worse, paving the way for further claims and blackmail and even greater future energy (price) increases. than those we have known in recent months, ”she said.

Rejection of fascism

The new Italian Prime Minister, leader of the post-fascist Fratelli party, has finally categorically denied any "sympathy" or "proximity" to fascism. “I have never had any sympathy or closeness to anti-democratic regimes. For no regime, including fascism,” she told the Chamber of Deputies. Fratelli D'Italia (FDI), a radical right-wing party founded in 2012 by Giorgia Meloni (in line with MSI, itself in 1946 by veterans of the Republic of Salo), easily won the general election on September 25, carried by a coalition of parties including the former Northern League, which for a long time defended a line at least as radical.

Support measures against inflation

As inflation rages, the Prime Minister has made a "priority" commitment to "strengthen support measures for households and businesses, both for energy bills and for fuel". “A financial commitment that will drain a large part of the available resources,” she acknowledged.

Inflation increased by 8.9% year on year in September and Italy was particularly affected by the energy crisis due to its dependence on Russian gas imports. Paradoxically, while his party had camped in frontal opposition to the government of Mario Draghi, his program is in line with that of the former head of the European Central Bank (ECB), at least in the economic field.

Giorgia Meloni has in fact entrusted the crucial portfolio of the Economy to a former minister of his predecessor, Giancarlo Giorgetti, representative of the moderate wing of the Lega. She has also taken as an adviser to the Palazzo Chigi, the seat of government, the former Minister for Ecological Transition of Draghi, Roberto Cingolani, who followed energy issues both in Rome and in Brussels. “On economic policy, there is general popular support in Italy for what Draghi was doing,” observes Gilles Moëc, chief economist of the Axa group.

Its approach aims to reassure the markets as well as Brussels and the European partners of the third largest economy in the euro zone, whose growth depends on the nearly 200 billion euros in subsidies and loans granted by the European Union within the framework from its post-pandemic recovery fund.

These funds depend on a series of reforms, ranging from justice to the digitization of public administration, which must be implemented by 2026. This windfall is essential for a country whose debt reaches 150% of GDP , the highest ratio in the euro zone after Greece, and which is expected to enter recession in 2023, according to forecasts by the International Monetary Fund. The many challenges awaiting his government are therefore essentially economic, starting with inflation and the public debt.

Stop the influx of migrants from Africa

Italy's new head of government also explained how she wants to reduce immigration to her country:

“This government wants to stop illegal departures (from Africa) and break human trafficking” in the Mediterranean, she said during her general policy speech to the Chamber of Deputies.



Andrew Preston for DayNewsWorld

RISHI SUNAK BECOMES PRIME MINISTER

SUCCESSING LIZ TRUSS

After just 44 days in office, British Prime Minister Liz Truss has announced her resignation.

To designate his successor, an internal election for the Conservative Party was held on Monday, October 24, 2023 in favor of Rishi Sunak.

The leader had had a bumpy start. On September 23, she unveiled a program of tax cuts, especially for the richest, before backtracking. In the meantime, his Minister of Finance has been fired. Last blow: his Minister of the Interior, Suella Braverman, resigned.

Resignation of Liz Truss

After the resignation of Prime Minister Liz Truss, two favorites stand out in the Conservative Party.

Boris Johnson or Rishi Sunak ?

The 42-year-old former finance minister was the first to cross the bar of 100 MP sponsorships, necessary to apply, and also announced his candidacy on Sunday. Faced with former Prime Minister Boris Johnson, the massive support of many Tories puts him in pole position for the moment.

This Sunday morning, former Finance Minister Rishi Sunak announced on Twitter his candidacy to become the next Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. “The UK is a great country, but we are facing a deep economic crisis. This is why I am running to be the leader of the Conservative Party and your next Prime Minister,” he wrote.

In the eyes of many Tories, Rishi Sunak, a budget orthodox, is the ideal candidate to put the British economy back on track and thus regain the confidence of the markets. For the Minister of Health, Robert Jenrick, the former banker of Goldman Sachs is a “man capable of making the difficult decisions to stabilize the economy”.

A credibility reinforced by his warning against the economic program, described as a "fairy tale" composed of tax cuts and aid for households, of Liz Truss who had beaten him in the race for Downing Street in August last.

"We have to move on"

“He had the right measures this summer, and he has the right measures now,” promises International Trade Minister Greg Hands.

Other praise comes from David Frost, Brexit negotiator alongside Boris Johnson who now publicly supports Rishi Sunak:

"Boris Johnson will always be a hero for getting Brexit done. But we have to move on."

"We have chosen our next prime minister," tweeted Conservative MP Penny Mordaunt on Monday, October 24, 2023, who admitted defeat and assured Rishi Sunak of her support.

Tory Rishi Sunak will become Britain's next prime minister following Liz Truss, his sole challenger in the race, with Minister Penny Mordaunt failing to secure the number of endorsements on Monday.

"Rishi Sunak has been elected leader of the Conservative Party," announced Graham Brady, responsible for these issues within the party in power for 12 years. Penny Mordaunt had just before admitted defeat, giving her "full support" to Rishi Sunak, 42-year-old former finance minister, on Twitter.

"We have only received one valid application"

Aged 42, this grandson of immigrants of Indian origin with the typical career of the British elite makes history by becoming the first non-white to lead the government of the United Kingdom. The victory of this deputy who was sworn in to Parliament on the Bhagavad Gita, a text considered one of the fundamental writings of Hinduism, comes at the height of the Hindu festival of Diwali.

“I can confirm that we have only received one valid candidacy,” declared the head of the organization of the poll, Graham Brady, “Rishi Sunak is thus elected leader of the Conservative Party”. With the party having a majority in the House of Commons, Rishi Sunak thus becomes Prime Minister, with the challenge of tackling a deep social crisis and trying to unify a majority that some consider unmanageable after 12 years in power. He is due to speak at 2:30 p.m. (1:30 p.m. GMT).

"Acting for our country"

"I want to straighten out our economy, unite our party and act for our country," he said Sunday, announcing his candidacy on Twitter during an intense weekend of negotiations.

Wanting to mark his difference from Boris Johnson, he promised "integrity, professionalism and responsibility". Britain's new Prime Minister Rishi Sunak then today promised to bring 'stability and unity' in the face of the 'deep economic difficulties' facing the UK. "We need stability and unity, and bringing the party and the country together will be my top priority," he said in his first speech since winning. "It is the greatest privilege of my life to serve the party that I love and in turn give back to the country to which I owe so much," he said.

Once the resignation of Liz Truss, initially pushed after the financial storm caused by her plans for massive tax cuts, is formally delivered to King Charles III, the sovereign will task Rishi Sunak with forming a new government, in a timetable that must be clarified shortly. It will be a first for the new sovereign, who acceded to the throne on September 8 with the death of his mother Elizabeth II.

Unsuccessful candidate this summer against Liz Truss, ephemeral Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak will be the fifth Prime Minister since the Brexit referendum of 2016, which opened a long chapter of unprecedented economic and political turbulence in the United Kingdom.

Failing to have managed to collect 100 sponsorships, his opponent, the Minister for Relations with Parliament Penny Mordaunt, 49, is eliminated. She admitted defeat on Twitter shortly before the official announcement. The 170,000 members of the Conservative Party thus do not have to be consulted, a process which would have delayed the emergence of the winner until Friday.

Rishi Sunak, the former Chancellor, guardian of budgetary orthodoxy, has seduced a large part of his camp and will come to power in a United Kingdom which is going through a severe economic and social crisis, with inflation at more than 10% and increasing strikes. The situation has continued to deteriorate in recent months as the government was paralyzed by the successive upheavals agitating the majority. It was further aggravated by the mistakes of Liz Truss who destabilized the markets and caused the pound to fall.

Johnson sets date

Rishi Sunak had regularly denounced Liz Truss' economic plan this summer. He appears as a reassuring figure for the British markets. In a spectacular reversal, his former boss, ex-Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced on Sunday evening that he was giving up running, due to divisions within the majority.

Always sure of himself, Boris Johnson, 58, said he was convinced that he would have had, if he had chosen to be a candidate, "a good chance (...) to return to Downing Street". He announced his resignation in July, cornered by dozens of resignations in his government, including that of Rishi Sunak.

He said he was "well placed" to lead his camp, in power for 12 years, during the next legislative elections scheduled in two years.




Jenny Chase for DayNewsWorld

TOWARDS THE INTERNATIONAL IGNITION

IN THE RUSSO-UKRAINIAN WAR ?

Bombings on several cities, deployment of Belarusian forces, strikes on energy infrastructure...
Russia has launched a counter-attack on Ukrainian soil since Monday, October 10, 2022.
The Russian army has increased the bombardments on four Ukrainian cities :
Kiev, the capital, but also Lviv, Dnipro and Ternopil were pounded at sunrise.

These cities, usually spared by the Russian army, were targeted by no less than seventy missiles. Russian cruise missiles that have put the Ukrainian surface-to-air defense to the test. Vladimir Putin has been betting since Saturday on a new figure at the head of his troops: Sergei Surovikin, promoted to head of the Russian "special military operation". Before that, this 55-year-old seasoned commander was already at the head of the southern forces grouping in Ukraine.

The numerous missile strikes, in particular, are therefore a response to a series of setbacks in recent weeks on the eastern and southern fronts of the country, where the Ukrainian forces have since the end of September taken over nearly 2,500 km2 and 96 localities, according to the Ukrainian President, Volodymyr Zelensky. Another snub for Russia: the explosion, Saturday, October 8, of part of the Crimean bridge, connecting the Ukrainian peninsula annexed in 2014 to Russian territory.

This explosion on the Kerch bridge could also have served as a trigger for Belarus' engagement alongside Russia. Minsk can indeed use it as a pretext "by interpreting it as a Ukrainian attack on Russian soil, which - with regard to the obligation of common assistance between the countries of the Union of Russia and Belarus – would force Belarus to participate in the conflict”, explains researcher Nadja Douglas.

Involvement of Belarus alongside Moscow

It is therefore the warlike awakening of the "last dictator of Europe", as he is called in the West. Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko indeed affirmed, Monday, October 10, that his country was going to deploy a “joint” military group with Russia within the framework of the war waged in Ukraine. The 68-year-old autocrat, who has ruled Belarus since 1994, also confirmed that he was preparing to welcome more troops from his Russian ally to his territory. To justify this war escalation, he cited the explosion on Saturday on the Kerch bridge linking Crimea to Russia and hypothetical "terrorist" threats from Poland and Lithuania.

For Moscow, a greater involvement of Belarus in its war in Ukraine first has a symbolic importance: it slightly brings Vladimir Putin out of his isolation in the face of a Ukraine openly supported by all NATO countries.

If the military contribution is however more questionable, the Belarusian army numbering around 40,000 men without any real combat experience, the increased commitment of Belarus on the path to war "also creates insecurity in the north for kyiv", main strategic interest seen from Moscow. Even if it is not the most impressive, the Belarusian army exists and can thus prevent Ukraine from throwing all its forces on the front in the south and the Donbass.

“Still the means of an escalation ?

During the virtual emergency summit of the G7 countries, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky insisted on Tuesday that Vladimir Putin, “who is at the end of his reign, still has the means for an escalation” of violence. He thus called on other countries to strengthen sanctions against Moscow as well as military aid to Ukraine, after two days of heavy bombardment in the country.

Accusing Moscow of wanting to “draw Belarus directly into the war”, the Ukrainian head of state called for an international observation mission on his country's border with Belarus. “Ukraine has not planned and does not plan military action against Belarus,” hammered the Ukrainian president on Tuesday before the G7.

During his speech, Mr. Zelensky also called on his G7 counterparts to help create an air shield capable of stopping the Russian strikes that have been falling on his country and which have multiplied since Monday. “Millions of people will be grateful to the G7 for such assistance,” he said.

“Advanced systems” of anti-aircraft defense

US President Joe Biden has promised his Ukrainian counterpart Volodymyr Zelensky “to continue to provide Ukraine with what it needs to defend itself, including advanced air defense systems,” according to a White House statement. , Monday, October 10. In a phone interview, the US leader expressed his "condolence" to his counterpart after massive Russian strikes on kyiv and other Ukrainian cities on Monday.

France, for its part, is strengthening its military presence on the borders of Eastern Europe

During his hearing before the Foreign Affairs Committee, Minister Sébastien Lecornu announced on Tuesday a reinforcement of the French presence on the borders of Ukraine in Romania. A reinforced company of armored infantry fighting vehicles in Romania, a squadron of Leclerc tanks, Rafales to ensure the defense of the sky in Lithuania as well as a company of light infantry in Estonia will be deployed in particular.

A decision taken Monday evening by the President of the Republic on a proposal from the Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces.

A ceasefire "as soon as possible" requested by Turkey

Russian President Vladimir Putin will meet his Turkish counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, in Astana on Thursday on the sidelines of a regional summit in the capital of Kazakhstan, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov confirmed on Tuesday. "Preparations are underway for the meeting," he told reporters.

Turkey has maintained a neutral position since the start of Russia's invasion of Ukraine. She has offered in recent months her mediation to open talks between the two belligerents, in vain. On Tuesday, the head of Turkish diplomacy, Mevlut Cavusoglu, again called on Moscow and kyiv for a ceasefire “as soon as possible”.

For his part, Sergei Lavrov, Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs, affirms that the Russian nuclear doctrine "only provides for retaliatory measures intended to prevent the destruction of the country". This therefore comes "as a result of direct nuclear strikes or the use of other weapons that pose a threat to the very existence of the Russian state".

"I hope that those who speculate on the subject of nuclear war - on the organization of a provocation with the use of weapons of mass destruction by the Russian Federation - are aware of their responsibility", he said he explains.




Joanne Courbet for DayNewsWorld

LIZ TRUSS IN STORM

WITHIN HIS GOVERNMENT

The British Prime Minister promised on Wednesday to pull the United Kingdom out of "the storm" on the last day of the Conservative Party Congress, marked by internal dissension, where her policy was

“Come out of the storm. »

Already weakened after only a month in power, British Prime Minister Liz Truss tried to regain the upper hand on Wednesday October 5, on the last day of a chaotic Conservative Party congress, undermined by internal dissension over the policy to be followed to exit the United Kingdom of the crisis.

“In these difficult times, we must act. I am determined to move the United Kingdom forward to get us out of the storm, ”said Liz Truss, in a speech of just over half an hour to elected officials and activists from her party, in which she n made no announcement.

Liz Truss defends her budget

With the desire to renew a conservative power at the head of the country for twelve years, the Prime Minister affirmed that she wanted to "end the cycle of weak growth" and hammered home her objective of "growing the British economy".

"The status quo is not an option," she insisted.

Trying to silence those who, even in her ranks, accuse her of already being offside after barely a month in power, she again insisted on her priorities: lowering taxes, improving the health service and the fight against illegal immigration.

Interrupted by activists from the NGO Greenpeace protesting against the end of the moratorium on hydraulic fracturing decided by her government, Prime Minister Liz Truss does not seem worried or concerned about the climate crisis. According to the Sunday Times, Liz Truss refused to participate in the Cop27 scheduled for Egypt in November. She even advised King Charles III not to go. For Greenpeace, the election of Liz Truss is therefore a real snub to the Conservative Party's promises made in 2019 - her predecessor Boris Johnson wanted to make the United Kingdom "Saudi Arabia of wind power". In power for just a month, she has for example promised to accelerate the exploitation of oil and gas in the North Sea. His government has already lifted the moratorium on hydraulic fracturing, a polluting technique for extracting hydrocarbons from shale. Liz Truss has also refused to tax oil companies, despite record profits in recent months.

The Prime Minister also once again defended her "responsible" budgetary approach, while her "mini-budget" presented on September 23 to deal with the cost of living crisis drew a host of criticism for her budget cuts. taxes financed by debt, and caused the pound sterling to fall.

Pressure from all sides

Under pressure from its own majority, the government gave up on Monday to abolish the highest tax bracket, a measure which crystallized the opposition because it benefited the richest taxpayers. On Monday, Finance Minister Kwasi Kwarteng announced that the measure aimed at abolishing the additional tax of 45% for incomes above 150,000 pounds was cancelled. “Abolition of this 45% tax has become a distraction in our primary mission to address the challenges facing our country,” he said.

“It was the most unpopular and regressive measure of his announcements, explains Nicholas Dickinson, lecturer in British politics at the University of Oxford. It reinforces the image of the party of the rich, which the Tories always try to avoid. »

By sacrificing what has been interpreted as a "gift for the rich", the government is mainly trying to save the rest of its program which advocates a state with little intervention, with low taxes and deregulation.

A coup against the Prime Minister

This about-face carried by the Minister of Finance, Kwasi Kwarteng, weakened the Prime Minister, who defended herself, assuring that "there is no shame for a leader to listen".

Will her speech before Congress be enough to reassert her authority, when Interior Minister Suella Braverman on Tuesday accused conservatives who openly criticized Liz Truss of having launched a putsch against her?

Much is at stake as former transport minister Grant Shapps, who backed ex-finance minister Rishi Sunak against Liz Truss in the Downing Street race, on Tuesday spoke of the danger of a vote of distrust of conservative parliamentarians.

"I don't think Conservative members of parliament, if they see the polls continue like this, will sit idly by," he warned.

Especially since a number of mined files are still awaiting the government and could fuel the revolt, such as the lifting of the moratorium on hydraulic fracturing or the removal of the maximum tax bracket for the richest, which Liz Truss refused to give up definitively, after having removed it from its "mini-budget".

But the revolt rumbles especially on the future revaluation of social benefits, about which the new government does not consider itself bound by the commitment made by former Prime Minister Boris Johnson to increase them to the height of inflation. Several voices were also raised within the majority to remind Liz Truss not to stray too far from Boris Johnson's program, which in December 2019 had earned the Conservatives an unprecedented triumph at the ballot box since Margaret Thatcher (First minister from 1979 to 1990). Liz Truss being more liberal than her predecessor, her team naturally tried to swing the helm further to the right. But by backtracking, the government has shown an admission of weakness and, implicitly, confirms a lack of internal support.

A reinvigorated opposition

“She does not have the majority of her deputies behind her, recalls Stephen Fisher, sociologist of politics. Now that she has already given in on a measure, I think those who oppose her policy will not hesitate to pressure her to change her mind. »

The next elections are expected in less than two years and the Labor opposition, under the impetus of its leader Keir Starmer, more centrist than his predecessor Jeremy Corbyn, emerged reinvigorated from its congress at the end of September, when 39% of Britons believe now that the Conservatives are leaning far right, up 12 points in two months, according to a YouGov poll released on Tuesday. Another poll recently gave Labor 33 points ahead of the Conservatives, a gap not seen since the late 1990s and the coming to power of Tony Blair (1997-2007).

To remain head of government and win votes in parliament, Liz Truss will therefore have to respect the party's point of view in her political decisions. Nicholas Dickinson notes that the continuation of the government should surely result in further setbacks compared to the mini-budget in September.




Joanne Courbet for DayNewsWorld

WHAT IS THE OUTCOME OF THE WAR AFTER

THE ANNEXATION OF THE UKRAINIAN PROVINCES

BY RUSSIA?

Ukraine announced on Sunday that it had taken over the town of Lyman, in the Donetsk region annexed by Russia, when the Russian Constitutional Court ruled legal the treaties of annexation of Ukrainian territories signed by Vladimir Putin. The announcement fell in the middle of the day: “From 12:30 local time, Lyman is completely rid (of the Russian army). Thank you to our military,” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said in a video posted on social media.

The capture on Sunday by the Ukrainians of the town of Lyman, an important railway junction, poses a serious problem for the Russian forces, on the defensive and forced to establish a new front line. The Russian army had to retreat in a hurry towards Svatove, halfway to the important big cities of Severodonetsk and Lysychansk. In addition, the Russian Ministry of Defense recognizes this Tuesday, October 4 a significant retreat of its army in the Ukrainian region of Kherson, according to a map shown during its daily briefing.

Could it be the very degradation of the military situation that prompted the Russian president to urgently decide on both these annexations and the “partial” mobilization of a new contingent? President Putin announced Friday the annexation of four Ukrainian regions, three days after the organization of referendums, on the pretext of the "right to self-determination of peoples". Friday, September 30, Vladimir Putin thus formalized the integration into Russia of four Ukrainian regions, the regions of Luhansk, Donetsk, Zaporijjia and Kherson. In addition, the Russian Constitutional Court, on Monday, October 3, ruled legal the treaties of annexation of Ukrainian territories signed by Vladimir Putin.

If this unilateral decision violates international law and will not be recognized by other States – with rare exceptions – it follows the referendums organized from September 23 to 27 in the sectors occupied by the Russian army. This annexation could thus have strategic consequences, because the Kremlin now explains that it is the very territory of Russia which is attacked by Ukraine, supported by NATO.

Article 4 of the 1993 Constitution stipulates that “the Russian Federation ensures the integrity and inviolability of its territory”. This means that, for Moscow, the new territories (in addition to the Crimea annexed since 2014) can no longer be the subject of negotiation.

From the point of view of Russian law (contrary to international law), the war is taking place on Russian soil itself, for example the town of Lyman (Donetsk Oblast), taken over by the Ukrainian army. For Vladimir Putin, this could justify new escalations, in order to guarantee “the inviolability of the territory”. In his speech of September 30, the Russian president thus assured that “the people living in Luhansk and Donetsk, in Kherson and Zaporozhya have become our citizens, forever. The decision has been made, and Russia will not betray it. We will defend our land with all the forces and resources at our disposal”.

However, the Ukrainian army claims to have taken over thousands of square kilometers in September, with significant American aid. kyiv designed one of its counter-offensives on Kherson. Could the Ukrainian attempt to take back the territories annexed by its neighbor, in the eyes of the Kremlin, constitute an "existential threat" for Russia, wonders the journalist Jean-Dominique Merchet in an article for L'Opinion? No chancellery excludes it..

In addition, the four regions annexed by Russia are only partially held by its army: Luhansk at 99%, Donetsk at 57%, Zaporijjia at 72% and Kherson at 93%.

Can this situation change rapidly with the "partial mobilization" of 300,000 men decreed by Vladimir Putin while the West continues to supply weapons, the United States thus announcing the delivery of 18 new Himars rocket launchers which will be added to the first 16. To strengthen the Ukrainian military arsenal, Germany, Denmark and Norway have promised kyiv from 2023 sixteen armored car artillery guns, Slovak Zuzana-2 while France is also considering new deliveries, in particular 6 to 12 Caesar guns taken from an order destined for Denmark.

One of the big questions is that of the Russian army's ability to "regenerate" its forces to continue the invasion.

And in his long anti-Western diatribe on Friday, Vladimir Putin raised the issue, making sure to do so indirectly. “The United States is the only country in the world to have used nuclear weapons twice, destroying the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. And they set a precedent. » .

In addition to nuclear power, an extension of the conflict to other areas is also possible. “Hence the serious concern about the Nord Stream gas pipeline explosions in the Baltic Sea. It could be a Russian-themed warning:

See what we could do elsewhere on other pipelines. Or on the submarine cables through which the Internet passes. “, remarked JD Merchet in an article in L'Opinion.




Emily Jackson for DayNewsWorld

SABOTAGE OF NORD STREAM 1 AND 2 GAS PIPELINES

OR THE OTHER WAR

The Danish and Swedish authorities indicated on Tuesday, September 27 that the Nord Stream 1 and 2 gas pipelines - which connect Russia to Europe via Germany - had been the victims of several leaks. Boils were visible on the surface of the sea, including one with a diameter of about 1,000 meters, according to a press release from the Danish army.

Nord Stream 1 is affected by two leaks, according to the Swedish Maritime Authority, one in the Swedish exclusive economic zone, the other in the Danish economic zone, northeast of the island of Bornholm. Denmark, for its part, discovered on Monday a leak on Nord Stream 2, which runs parallel to 1.

According to the German geological research center GFZ, two earthquakes were recorded on Monday, one shortly after 2 a.m., the other at 5 p.m. The institute, however, refused to establish a formal link with the leaks detected on the gas pipelines. The Swedish police, however, announced on Tuesday the opening of a preliminary investigation for "sabotage", said a spokesman.

Objects of geopolitical arm wrestling in recent months, the two pipelines operated by a consortium dependent on the Russian giant Gazprom are no longer operational because of the consequences of the war in Ukraine. But they were filled with gas.

A complex sabotage

The accidental cause of these explosions was quickly ruled out as implausible. The three explosions with a power equivalent to 6 tons of TNT occurred in international waters a few minutes apart on the two gas pipelines at a depth of 70 to 100 meters. For Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen, “these are deliberate acts. We are not talking about an accident”.

The “sabotage” thesis is therefore highly favored to explain the spectacular leaks from the Nord Stream gas pipelines, an operation that is certainly complex but by no means beyond the reach of a competent army. And there are plenty of them in the area. But the method used remains unknown as the presumed author, object of multiple conjectures.

The three leaks identified since Monday, which are located in the Baltic Sea, off the Danish island of Bornholm, between southern Sweden and Poland, nevertheless belong to an area that has been highly monitored for decades. “The Baltic Sea is confined and shallow and almost every movement is tracked and observed by the coastal states and their ships,” notes Julian Pawlak, of Helmut Schmidt University in Hamburg.

In addition, the operation requires intervention at a depth of 70 meters. " It's heavy. Damaging two gas pipelines at the bottom of the sea is an important event, so a state actor is likely, ”notes Lion Hirth, professor at the Hertie School in Berlin, implicitly ruling out the terrorist or villainous act. But a competent army knows how to do it. "Ships and submarines are capable of deploying covert combat divers" and other remotely guided underwater vehicles.

But nothing is impossible for an army experienced in the art of clandestine operations.

Who are the responsibles ?

It remains to be seen who could have sabotaged these installations and who would have an interest in cutting off these gas pipelines. No one has claimed responsibility for the explosions. For Ulrich Bounat, geopolitical analyst and specialist in Central and Eastern Europe, few countries have the capacity to commit these acts. And all eyes are on Moscow.

For its part, the Kremlin refutes its responsibility and said it was “extremely concerned”, considering that “no” hypothesis should be excluded, including that of sabotage, without giving more details on its origin. Russia will also request a meeting of the UN Security Council on the leaks detected on the Nord Stream 1 and 2 gas pipelines, after having summoned Joe Biden to say if the United States was at the origin of this “Sabotage”, Russian diplomacy announced on Wednesday.

“Russia intends to convene an official meeting of the UN Security Council in the context of the provocations concerning the Nord Stream 1 and 2 gas pipelines,” Russian diplomatic spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on Telegram.

For his part, the adviser to the Ukrainian presidency, Mykhaïlo Podoliak, denounces him "a planned terrorist attack" by Moscow, without however providing evidence. Washington is reserved, the Americans refusing to "confirm" an act of sabotage.

It remains to be seen who is responsible for the operation. Some countries have an interest in the “pipe” never being able to work again. The opponents of Nord Stream 2 have been numerous for years, the United States in the lead. On February 7, shortly before the Russian invasion of Ukraine, US President Joe Biden raised the possibility of "ending" it.

Asked about the method used for an infrastructure under the control of his German ally, he replied: “I promise you, we will be able to do it”. The video has been circulating widely for 24 hours on social networks.

This Tuesday, September 27, moreover, Poland, Norway and Denmark inaugurated a strategic gas pipeline which will allow Poles and Europeans to be less dependent on deliveries from Moscow. “The era of Russian dominance in gas is coming to an end,” Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said at his inauguration.

Europe's cautious response

If Europe believes that it can only be a deliberate act, it remains cautious about its origin and its author. The European Union warned on Wednesday against any attack on its energy infrastructure in a statement issued by the head of European diplomacy Josep Borrell.

“Any deliberate disruption of Europe's energy infrastructure is completely unacceptable and will be met with a vigorous and united response,” said Josep Borrell, speaking on behalf of the 27 EU member states.

Because the consequences for Europe are very real. The two gas pipelines were certainly not functional but the explosions reduced to nothing the possibility of a negotiation to deliver gas to Europe this winter. According to Denmark, it will already be “one or two weeks” before the damaged pipelines can be inspected. In the meantime, even when the Nord Stream pipelines were not supplying, Europe has never bought so much Russian gas. Since the beginning of the year, imports of liquefied natural gas (LNG) delivered by ship by Russia have increased by 13%, according to data from the International Group of LNG Importers (GIIGNL). They already amounted to 11 million tonnes at the end of August. They should greatly exceed the level of Russian LNG imports in 2021, which were 13 million tonnes.

Today, Russia accounts for around 12% of LNG supplies in Europe. This gas arrives in Europe via LNG terminals in the Netherlands, Belgium, France and Spain.

However, we have two certainties at this stage: first, the event is linked to the war in Ukraine. "NATO Maritime Command and Allied ships are considering and preparing for hybrid activities, including the sabotage of critical infrastructure, on the sidelines of the primary objective of collective defence," says Julian Pawlak.

Then, it creates additional instability in the European economy. "It's a stark reminder of the vulnerability of our energy infrastructure," said Lion Hirth.

Whoever they are, those who attacked Nord Stream also make it clear that they could strike at other energy infrastructures serving a Europe thirsty for gas and oil.




Britney Delsey for DayNewsWorld

LEGISLATIVE IN ITALY GIORGIA MELONI

MAKES THE BLOC OF RIGHTS TRIUMPH

Giorgia Meloni, leader of Italy's Fratelli d'Italia (Brothers of Italy) party, is set to become the first woman to preside over Italy's Council of Ministers, following the triumph of the right-wing alliance in the legislative elections held Sunday in Italy.

The right-wing alliance formed by Fratelli d'Italia (FdI), Matteo Salvini's League and Silvio Berlusconi's Forza Italia should indeed benefit from a solid majority in the Italian Parliament.

Preliminary election results give the IDF the lead, with nearly 26% of the vote. In previous legislative elections, the party only won 4.3% of the vote. Matteo Salvini's League won around 9% of the vote, up from more than 17% four years ago, and Silvio Berlusconi's Forza Italia won around 8% of the vote. The centre-left Democratic Party won 19% of the vote, the 5 Star Movement won 16% of the vote and the centrist group “Action” was credited with just over 7% of the vote.

“We have to remember that we are still at the beginning. From tomorrow we will have to prove our worth,” Giorgia Meloni told her party faithful early Monday morning. Roman, aged 45, Giorgia Meloni has compared himself to the British Tories, and has focused his campaign on the fight against immigration and on lowering taxes.

In a speech delivered after the announcement of the results, Giorgia Meloni adopted a conciliatory tone. "If we are called to govern this country, we will do so for all Italians, with the desire to unite the people and focus on what brings us together rather than what divides us," she said. . “The time has come to be responsible. »

The next Italian government will indeed have its work cut out for it. The deadline to meet before December 31 is tight. In addition to the meetings taking place within the framework of the European Council, whoever will chair the Italian Council following Sunday's legislative elections will take part in the next G20 summit in Bali on November 15 and 16.

Giorgia Meloni and her allies will, however, have to deal with a difficult political situation, whether it be soaring energy costs, public debt, the risk of recession or the fallout from the conflict in Ukraine.

The victory of the right-wing coalition in Italy: "a political recomposition which, beyond the Italian case, crosses all Western democracies, as we have seen recently in Sweden as well", notes Alexandre Devecchio in Figaro.




Andrew Preston for DayNewsWorld

LEGISLATIVE IN ITALY THE WINNING BET

BY GIORGIA MELONI

LEADER OF THE RADICAL RIGHT

This Friday marks the last day of campaigning in Italy before the early general elections to be held on Sunday. Indeed Sunday, 50 million Italians are called to the polls for early elections. After the fall of the Draghi government in July, they will elect 400 deputies and 200 senators. The result of this vote must lead to the new President of the Italian Council. And this president of the Council could well be a president, for the first time in the history of the country. Giorgia Meloni and her Fratelli d'Italia party are leading in the polls, with 25% of the vote.

This year, Giorgia Meloni seems on the way to winning her bet to improve her score throughout the Peninsula. In Veneto, a region in the northeast of the Peninsula among the richest in the country and stronghold of the League, this upheaval is very visible. According to a poll by the Demos institute, published on September 10, Brothers of Italy is credited with 30.5% of the vote, against 14.4% for the League. A result that was unimaginable a few years ago (in 2018, FDI won 4% of the vote), especially since the League, which runs most of the large and small towns in the region, had reached 49% in the European elections in 2019.

His coalition with Matteo Salvini's Lega and Silvio Berlusconi's Forza Italia even reached 45% of voting intentions, which would make it the majority coalition in Parliament. The right-wing coalition could thus win between 45% and 55% of the seats in parliament.

Such a result on election day would allow Giorgia Meloni to claim the post of prime minister and set the course for the coalition, with in particular the liberal right of former head of government Silvio Berlusconi.

From the middle class, Giorgia Meloni is not a beginner in politics. She began at age 15 in the post-fascist MSI movement. At 29, she became the youngest elected member of Parliament, then in 2006, the youngest minister in the country's history, under Silvio Berlusconi. : His credo: Family, religion and homeland. She presents herself fervently from the desks of her meetings: “I am Giorgia, I am a woman, I am a mother, I am Italian, I am a Christian! ". The candidate of the Fratelli d'Italia party intends to restore patriotism, with an ultra-conservative, anti-system and anti-immigration speech.

At the height of the crisis caused by the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, Italy would be, after Sweden, the second member of the EU to have a coalition government between the right and the extreme right.




Andrew Preston for DayNewsWorld

THE QUEEN'S LAST VOYAGE ELIZABETH II

Gathered in mourning behind the coffin of Elizabeth II, the British royal family joined hundreds of foreign dignitaries at Westminster Abbey in London on Monday for a farewell with great pomp to the sovereign, at the height of its worldwide popularity.

The British are saying their last goodbyes to the Queen this morning, with a perfectly choreographed funeral.

The lying in state ended at 6:30 a.m. local time after four days and nights of interrupted visitation.

At 10:35 a.m., Royal Guards carried Elizabeth II's coffin outside Westminster Hall, and placed it on a Royal Navy gun carriage, hauled by 142 sailors, a tradition dating back to the funeral of Queen Victoria in 1901. The same carriage had been used for the funerals of Edward VII in 1910, George V in 1936, George VI in 1952 and Winston Churchill in 1965 and Lord Mountbatten in 1979.

In a perfectly oiled military ballet, against a backdrop of sad bagpipes, the procession then headed for Westminster Abbey, where the Queen was married in 1947 and was crowned in 1953.

Then the coffin, again carried by the guards, entered the abbey, followed by King Charles, Prince Andrew, Princess Anne, Prince Edward and Princes William and Harry, under the solemn gaze of 2,000 guests from prestige, including US President Joe Biden, French President Emmanuel Macron, and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, accompanied by Sophie Grégoire, to name a few.

The ceremony, led by Dean of Westminster David Doyle, broke for a national minute of silence, where the unusually united Kingdom seemed to come to a sudden standstill. Last tribute of a people to its sovereign for 70 years. Last farewell to a bygone era.

The ceremony then resumed, to take the coffin to Wellington Arch in London, from where the late Queen will be taken to her final resting place, Windsor Castle, where she will rest. ultimately, starting tonight.

The queen will be buried in the evening and will rest alongside her husband and his predecessors.

Completed in the 16th century, the chapel has served as the final resting place of the kings of England since George III in 1820.



Andrew Preston for DayNewsWorld

RIGHT BLOCK VICTORY

AND FAR-RIGHT IN SWEDEN

It is a historic turning point in the history of Sweden. The alliance of the three right-wing parties with the far-right party won the legislative elections in a particularly close vote. According to the latest partial results communicated by the electoral commission, the right-wing coalition is on the way to obtaining 176 seats and the left-wing coalition 173 seats in Parliament.

Jimmie Akesson seems to be getting his revenge, after seventeen years at the head of the far-right party. The Democrats of Sweden party (given at 20.7%) could be the first party on the right thanks to insecurity.

These results reflect the immigration policy adopted in the mid-1970s by the Social Democrats under Olof Palme consisting in welcoming political refugees from all over the world (Chileans, Iranians, Kurds, Somalis, Eritreans, Syrians...) which culminated in 2014-2015 with the reception of 163,000 refugees - an absolute record in Europe in proportion to the population.

Swedish Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson announced yesterday, Wednesday September 14, her resignation in the face of the victory of the alliance of the right and the extreme right which won the legislative elections by a short margin.

She said she hoped that the country could get a new government as soon as possible to face the challenges ahead, including a possible energy crisis this winter. The left had been in power for 8 years.

The conservative Ulf Kristersson, leader of the Moderates party, one of the four formations of the right-wing bloc which also brings together the Christian Democrats, the Liberals and the far-right Sweden Democrats party, is his camp's candidate for the post of Prime Minister.

"I will now focus on forming a new government that can deliver results, a government for all Swedes and all citizens," he said.




Carl Delsey for DayNewsWorld

WILL CHARLES III BE A GOOD KING ?

A page turns for Charles. Charles III, born November 14, 1948 at Buckingham Palace, became King of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland as well as fourteen other sovereign states, called Commonwealth realms, and their territories and dependencies. As monarch of the United Kingdom, he is ex officio supreme governor of the Church of England and by tradition head of the Commonwealth, an intergovernmental organization of fifty-six states.

Eldest son of Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, he was Prince of Wales from 1958 to 2022, a title traditionally bestowed on the reigning monarch's eldest son or grandson. He is the Prince of Wales who has retained this title the longest. On April 9, 2021, on the death of his father, he became Duke of Edinburgh.

Continuity of the monarchy

At 73, the successor to Elizabeth II is aware of the need to ensure continuity with the royal tradition embodied by his mother.

“I was raised with a deep respect for devotion to others and for the precious traditions, freedoms and responsibilities that flow from our unique history and our parliamentary system of government,” he said on Friday. By promising to serve his country "with loyalty, respect and love", he hinted at the emergence of a new royal lexicon, even a new relationship between the Windsors and the people.

King Charles III had a lifetime to prepare for this function. He has also gradually begun to supplement the Queen in her duties, replacing her in particular for official trips abroad, and to accompany her to her traditional speech at the opening of the parliamentary session. Her responsibilities increased further as Elizabeth II showed herself to be increasingly weakened after the death of Prince Philip. In May 2022, it is he who thus delivers the speech from the throne in Parliament, a solemn appointment that his mother has only missed three times in 70 years of reign.

Between evolutions and continuity of the monarchy

However, the new monarch intends to continue to defend the values ​​he has cultivated and put into practice for half a century.

Queen Elizabeth II was also not mistaken, she who had paid him a moving and very remarkable tribute on the occasion of the 70th birthday of the Prince of Wales, in 2018. 

The sovereign had greeted in Charles "a man accomplished, passionate and creative, not least thanks to the support of his wife Camilla." "I admire no one as much as he does for his energy, ambition and enthusiasm," said Malcolm Ross, Prince of Wales, to Sally Bedell Smith, author of a biography of Elizabeth II (The Life of a Modern Monarch, Ecuador editions, in bookstores tomorrow).

The ecological commitment

A fan of polo, hunting and watercolours, Prince Charles also developed a passion for botany and organic farming. “In the 1980s, he was perceived as a nature lover, which was not a compliment at the time,” recalls Anna Whitelock, historian specializing in the monarchy.

Prince Charles has set up an all-organic garden and farm at his Highgrove estate in Gloucestershire, West England. He also launched the Duchy Originals range of organic food and beverages, marketed by high-end supermarkets Waitrose. 2019). An avid gardener, Charles revealed in a 1986 interview that he talks to plants.

Ecology is "perhaps the subject that will define the reign" of Charles III, believes the professor at the City, University of London. It is indeed a long-standing commitment of the monarch, who creates a foundation for the protection of tropical forests, calls for greener investments at the opening of the World Economic Forum in Davos, promotes sustainable urban planning and publishes his annual carbon footprint since 2007. At the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow in November 2021, he urged politicians to redouble their efforts in the fight against global warming.

Charities

In addition to the environment, Charles III invested himself in an intense charitable activity: he chairs or supports more than 400 organizations, including the Prince's Trust, which has helped nearly a million disadvantaged young people. King Charles III will certainly no longer be able to devote himself as much to the Prince's Trust, the charitable organization he created in 1976 with his severance pay from the Royal Navy to help disadvantaged young people.

It is to William, now first in the order of succession to the throne, and to his wife, Catherine, that it is up to take up the torch of his social works, indicated the ex-prince of Wales. “Charles tried to show […] that he was also a monarch in the making, dignified and humane”, advances the journalist Tina Brown in her book The Palace Papers.

Interference in political affairs

Close to the 14th Dalai Lama, Prince Charles has also always displayed his convictions by never visiting China, not attending the opening ceremony of the Beijing Olympics24 and not taking part in official dinners during Jiang's visits. Zemin in 1999, Hu Jintao in 2005 and Xi Jinping in 201525,26.

Moreover, he did not hesitate either to interfere in the political affairs of the country. Thus in May 2015, a series of letters addressed by Prince Charles to various members of the Blair government between 2004 and 2005 were made public by the Cabinet Office after a long legal battle initiated by a journalist from the Guardian.

In these twenty-seven letters, nicknamed "the letters of the black spider" ("black spider memos") by the daily, the heir to the throne shows an insistent interest in subjects as diverse as the war in Iraq , the promotion of alternative medicine or the fight against illegal toothfish fishing.

Over the course of this life spent waiting to become king, "he fought to forge an identity as Prince of Wales", notes the New York Times.

However, will Charles III continue to express his opinions openly, breaking with the reserve expected of the monarch of the United Kingdom crown ?

"I'm not that stupid", he slipped to the BBC in 2018, saying he was "supporter of a monarchy a little behind".

In May, a month before his mother's 70th anniversary celebrations, only 32% of people polled by YouGov thought the Prince of Wales would make a good king, down from 60% six months earlier. After decades spent in his mother's shadow, Charles can finally exist on his own. His first speech was well received by the British.

It remains for the new sovereign to find the point of balance between respect for royal tradition and modernization of the institution.




Garett Skyport for DayNewsWorld

UNDERSTANDING THE UKRAINIAN COUNTERATTACKS

Ukraine announced new military successes on Monday, saying it had reached the border and recaptured the equivalent of seven times the area of ​​Kiev in a month from the Russian army . According to British intelligence, a prestigious Russian army unit was seriously degraded in the Kharkiv counter-offensive. The 1st Guards Tank Army of Russia - designated to protect Moscow in case of attack and conduct counterattacks against NATO countries - took part in the chaotic retreat from Kharkiv Oblast.

According to Volodymyr Zelensky, since the beginning of September, Ukrainian soldiers "have already liberated 6,000 km2 of Ukrainian territory in the east and south, and we continue to advance". Ukraine has already claimed throughout the weekend new military successes against the Russian army in the eastern and southern parts of its territory, with Moscow acknowledging that it has lost ground.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, however, believes that it is "too early" to anticipate the outcome of this counter-offensive. On the ground, the Russians are also bombing certain reconquered areas. “It is too early to say exactly where all this will lead us,” he declared during a press conference in Mexico City. "We are in the early days (of the counter-offensive) so I think it wouldn't be good to predict exactly where this is going to take us." "The Russians maintain very significant forces in Ukraine, as well as equipment and ammunition,” observed the Secretary of State.

Despite the tactical successes they seem to promise, how to explain the Ukrainian victories, wonders Cyrille Bret, teacher at Sciences Po, who gives his geopolitical analysis in The Conversation FR. Above all, does this counter-attack portend a complete reconquest of the 20% of Ukrainian territory occupied by Russia?

It is above all for President Zelensky to seize the opportunity of the "diplomatic return", says Cyrille Bret in his partially reproduced article.

While avoiding the erosion of his popular support at home, he had to take the initiative. to demonstrate its determination abroad with tangible military results before the 77th session of the United Nations General Assembly, which will take place from September 20 to 26, 2022. Ukraine wants to present itself there not only as a victim of the Russia but also as a sovereign state capable of ensuring its security, provided it receives the necessary international support. Indeed, he explains, Ukraine depends very largely on external funding (World Bank, IMF, European Union, United States) to continue to function.

It is therefore a question of gaining recognition of its determination to recover its territorial integrity in the temple of nation-states, the UN..

Peace or Victory ?

If these counter-offensives show the determination of the Ukrainians to save their State, to defend their territory and to preserve their sovereignty, they remain no less circumscribed in space and in their results.

They therefore acutely raise the question of the strategic purpose pursued by Ukraine.

In many political forums, official representatives of Ukraine claim that their goal is complete victory against Russia.

And they consider any compromise of armistice and peace as a real "betrayal" of the Ukrainian national idea.

In other words, their strategic objective is to reconquer not only the areas taken by the Russians since February 24, 2022 but also the secessionist regions (self-proclaimed Republics of Lugansk and Donetsk) and the annexed areas (Crimea) since 2014.

Are these objectives militarily and economically realistic ?

Is Ukraine capable of carrying out a large-scale counter-offensive to retake the fifth of its territory currently occupied by troops from the Russian Federation ?

If it is within its rights under international standards, should Ukraine resolutely engage in a necessarily very long conflict to reconstitute its territory ?

Consequently, should the supporters of Ukraine also assume this objective of “victory” ?

This is the position that several influential voices defend in the United States.

Should Ukraine instead seek a sufficiently favorable military balance of power to then engage in negotiations ?

Should it therefore multiply the counter-offensives in order to then lead an exhausted Russia to the negotiating table ?

And should Ukraine's supporters support it in this strategy as France and Germany envisage mezza voce ?  


If the tactical successes currently observed are confirmed and multiplied, the Ukrainian authorities will be faced with a real dilemma: complete victory in the very long term or unsatisfactory peace in the shorter term, concludes the geopolitician.



Andrew Preston for DayNewsWorld

RUSSIAN HYDROCARBONS A WEAPON

AGAINST EUROPE THREATENED BY SHORTAGES ?

Last week, the G7 countries indicated that they wanted to “urgently” implement a cap on the price of Russian oil, encouraging a “broad coalition” of countries to participate, in retaliation for the offensive in Ukraine.

On Wednesday, Vladimir Putin wanted to be clear: Russia will no longer deliver oil or gas to countries that cap the prices of hydrocarbons sold by Moscow. Capping the prices of Russian hydrocarbons would be "an absolutely stupid decision", "a stupidity", launched Vladimir Putin during an economic forum in Vladivostok (Russian Far East).

“If European countries want to give up their competitive advantages, it is up to them to decide,” he warned. But “we will deliver nothing at all if it is contrary to our interests, in this case economic. Neither gas, nor oil, nor coal (...). Nothing,” he added, his tone firm. “We will not provide anything outside the framework of the contracts” signed with the importing countries, Mr. Putin again affirmed in front of several Russian and Asian economic leaders, lambasting “those who try to dictate their own will to us.

European countries face the threat of the boomerang

It is in this context of arm wrestling that Russia announced last week the closure of the valves of the Nord Stream gas pipeline, which serves Germany and several European countries, citing technical reasons. According to the Russian giant Gazprom, this prolonged interruption is due to the need to repair a gas pipeline turbine.

This decision reinforced the fears of European countries of a total cut off of Russian gas to the continent at the approach of winter and against a background of galloping inflation of energy prices. In a statement, Gazprom said on Wednesday that "European Union countries have reduced Russian gas deliveries to their market by 48% since the start of the year, and by 49% if we add Great Britain". .

According to the Russian president, EU countries, faced with soaring energy prices, "have several solutions: either subsidize (these) high prices, (...) or reduce consumption". “From an economic point of view, it is correct. But from a social point of view, it is dangerous. It can cause an explosion,” he warned. “It is better to respect contractual obligations, civilized rules,” argued the Russian leader. “It is impossible to harm 'objective' economic laws. Otherwise it will come back to you like a boomerang.”

Strengthening Russian-Asian relations

Now undesirable for the West since the launch of its intervention in Ukraine on February 24, Moscow has accelerated a shift towards Asia in recent months in the hope of finding new markets and suppliers there, to replace those lost due to American and European sanctions.

It is in this context that Mr. Putin participated Wednesday in an economic forum of strategic importance for Russia in Vladivostok (Far East), in the presence of several senior Asian officials.

Isolating Russia is "impossible" despite the "sanctions fever" of the West, its President Vladimir Putin said on Wednesday, welcoming the "growing role" of Asia to which Moscow is turning more and more. Beijing, for its part, is also going through a diplomatic crisis with the United States, especially since the visit to Taiwan in August by the speaker of the American House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi.

Wishing to bring about a close rapprochement, both on the economic and security levels, Vladimir Putin met the head of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress, Li Zhanshu, the third highest Chinese official.

Thus the Russian gas giant Gazprom, a state-owned company, will henceforth be paid by China for its contracts in rubles and yuan, instead of the dollar.

In parallel with the Vladivostok forum, Moscow has also conducted large-scale military exercises in the Russian Far East in recent days, in the presence of soldiers from several allied countries, including China. Faced with "the technological, financial and economic aggression of the West", the Russian president said he was delighted with the "little by little distance" of the Russian economy from the dollar, the euro and the pound.

Trying to portray Russia as part of a united front against the West, Putin said sanctions targeting Moscow were a threat to the global economy. The pandemic “has been replaced by new global challenges, which threaten the whole world. I mean the sanctions fever of the West,” he said. "The absolute majority of Asia-Pacific states do not accept the destructive logic of sanctions," Putin said.

Despite sanctions, Russia has pocketed 158 billion euros from oil and gas sales since the start of the war in Ukraine...

"Irreversible changes have occurred throughout the system of international relations", he noted, denouncing "the stubborn refusal of Western elites to see the facts".




Joanne Courbet for DayNewsWorld

LIZ TRUSS SUCCEEDS BORIS JOHNSON

Liz Truss was appointed, this Monday, September 5, 2022, to take over from Boris Johnson, by the approximately 160,000 members of the Conservative party. And as a result, the Tories having an absolute majority in the House of Commons, she becomes at 47, the third woman to hold the post of Prime Minister in the history of the United Kingdom, after a campaign of several weeks against Rishi. Sunak. She will be officially named Prime Minister at a ceremony with Elizabeth II on Tuesday. The new Downing Street tenant will take office in an explosive economic and social context, in the midst of the cost of living crisis in the United Kingdom.

The new Maggie

Elizabeth Truss presents herself as the new Margaret Thatcher, still very popular among the Tories. Like her, Liz Truss is a great supporter of free trade and is very firm against Russia. She's even said she's ready to press the nuclear button if there's a threat. 'she often dresses in the same way as the one who was the first female head of government between 1979 and 1990 and the resemblance is sometimes striking.

It is located ideologically, to the right of the conservative party, favorable to a system with low taxes in a state with little intervention.

A rich but sometimes opportunistic political career

Born July 26, 1975 into a very left-leaning family, this Oxford graduate was first active in the centrist Liberal-Democrat party before joining the Conservatives, for whom she became MP in 2010, for the constituency of South West Norfolk ( east of England).

Before being minister under Boris Johnson, Liz Truss had already participated in previous governments. She served under David Cameron, before Brexit, then under Theresa May.

In 2014, four years after being elected MP for the constituency of South West Norfolk, Liz Truss became, at 38, the youngest female member of the cabinet in the United Kingdom. The elected Conservative was appointed Secretary of State for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, then Secretary of State for Justice in July 2016, under the authority of Prime Minister Theresa May. Chief Secretary of the Treasury in 2017, she became Secretary of State for International Trade in 2019, then, two months later, Minister for Women and Equality. Liz Truss climbs a further step in September 2021, when she is appointed head of the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Commonwealth and Development.

However, she also experienced defeats and setbacks: she almost lost the legislative nomination due to an extramarital affair and was demoted by Theresa May after a difficult passage in Justice.

She could also have paid for her vote against Brexit in 2016 ... But she became one of its most fervent supporters, negotiating and touting new free trade agreements at the Department for International Trade. Appointed in 2021 at the head of British diplomacy, she is intransigent against the European Union on Northern Ireland, and embodies with Boris Johnson the firmness against Russia after the invasion of Ukraine.

The economic crisis in sight

The campaign was to turn the page on "partygate", repeated scandals which revealed the organization of parties by Boris Johnson and his teams during the confinements linked to Covid-19. But it has been shaken up by the energy and purchasing power crisis. Inflation exceeded 10% in July and could reach 18% in January 2023.

Social discontent has continued to mount since June and even more so since Boris Johnson has taken over the interim at the head of the country from afar during the summer. The unions have launched strikes to demand higher wages in many sectors: public transport, the postal service, the ports...

The former Minister of Foreign Affairs will have to face the crisis affecting the country. A high-risk mission when only 35% of Britons think she would make a good Prime Minister, according to a poll published by Inews. Despite galloping inflation and the many social movements linked to the issue of wages, the new head of government promised during her campaign “to lower taxes and not distribute subsidies”. About the energy crisis that is shaking the country, Liz Truss remained vague, promising an announcement during the first week, without giving further details.

A high-risk mission for the new head of government...




Emily Jackson for DayNewsWorld

THE FUNERAL OF MIKHAIL GORBACHEV

WITHOUT VLADIMIR PUTIN

The Kremlin has officially announced that Vladimir Putin will not attend Mikhail Gorbachev's funeral.

"We know that the main ceremony will be on September 3, 2022, as well as the funeral, but the president's schedule will not allow him to be there," Dmitry Peskov told reporters, adding that Vladimir Putin had already gone to the Moscow hospital where Mikhail Gorbtachev died to "place flowers near his coffin".

In a very measured message of condolence, the Russian president had evoked the memory of a man who had "a great influence on the history of the world" and "guided our country through a period of complex and dramatic changes and great challenges”.

Gorbachev adored by Westerners

By contrast, Western officials paid heavy tribute to the 1990 Nobel Peace Prize winner for sharply reducing East-West confrontation. He died on Tuesday August 3 at the age of 91 following a "long and serious illness", announced the Central Clinical Hospital (TSKB) in Moscow, where he was being treated. Mikhail Gorbachev, last leader of the USSR, died on Tuesday August 30 at the age of 91. Whoever received the Nobel Peace Prize ended the Soviet Union and the Cold War.

On December 25, 1991, Mikhail Gorbachev signed his resignation, but also the death certificate of the USSR. The Soviet era is closing. Arriving at the head of the Communist Party in 1985, he embarked on the path of reform. Perestroika, "glasnost"... Mikhail Gorbachev wants to liberalize the economy and society. It is a door that opens for the peoples of the Soviet bloc, eager for freedom. When the East Germans stormed the Berlin Wall in 1989, Gorbachev refused to send the tanks. The communist bloc is collapsing.

Mikhail Gorbachev is then adored by Western leaders, such as Ronald Reagan, François Mitterrand and Margaret Thatcher, who will say: “With him, we can do business. In 1987, he even appeared all smiles at the White House and signed the first nuclear disarmament agreement between East and West. He will then receive the Nobel Peace Prize.

An ambivalent figure in Russia

In Russia, on the other hand, since the disappearance of the USSR in 1991, he remained an ambivalent figure. If he is the one who gave freedom of expression a chance to emerge, he was for many responsible for the break-up of a superpower and the terrible years of economic shock that followed, experienced as a humiliation.

The years that followed the dissolution of the USSR remain a trauma for many Russians, plunged into dazzling poverty, confronted with political chaos and a bloody war in Chechnya. With the coming to power in 2000 of Vladimir Putin, who said he considered the disappearance of the USSR as the "greatest geopolitical catastrophe" of the 20th century, the state brought society into line while ensuring the return of power Russian on the international scene.

For Mikhail Gorbachev, relations have always been complex with the new masters of the Kremlin, whether it was the first Russian president Boris Yeltsin (1991-1999), his sworn enemy, or Vladimir Putin, whom he criticized while seeing in him a chance for stable development of Russia.

Mikhail Gorbachev was the last living leader of the Cold War era, a period whose echoes have been particularly felt since the offensive of current Russian President Vladimir Putin in Ukraine, launched on February 24.

Before his death, Mikhail Gorbachev had not spoken publicly about this conflict in Europe since the Second World War, decried in the West as a resurgence of Russian imperialism.




Jenny Chase for DayNewsWorld

RUSSIA/UKRAINE THE ISSUES AROUND THE ZAPORIJIA NUCLEAR POWER PLANT

Tension remains maximum around the Zaporijia nuclear power plant, the most powerful in Europe in 2022, located in southern Ukraine and occupied by the Russian army since March. In recent weeks, bombings have been falling not far from the nuclear power plant, raising fears of a new Chernobyl, the largest civilian nuclear accident. It is the target of bombardments of which both Ukraine and Russia accuse each other.

While Moscow has rejected requests for the demilitarization of this strategic area, the two countries mutually accused each other on Thursday of preparing to carry out a "provocation" this Friday, August 19, 2022. On both sides, we accuse each other of encouraging the escalation, right during the visit of the Secretary General of the UN, Antonio Guterres, scheduled for the same day in Ukraine, in the port of Odessa in particular. Still, neither Moscow nor kyiv have provided any concrete evidence to support their mutual accusations...

Faced with the danger, Vladimir Poutine and Emmanuel Macron however spoke by telephone this Friday. The Russian leader "stressed that the systematic bombardment (...) of the territory of the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant creates a danger of large-scale disaster which could lead to the radioactive contamination of vast territories", the Kremlin said in a statement . MM. Macron and Putin also called for the organization "as soon as possible" of a visit to the plant by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), according to the same source. This was confirmed by the Elysée, shortly after, indicating that Vladimir Putin had accepted that the IAEA mission “pass through Ukraine”. He declared during this interview that he agreed to "review the requirement" that it go through Russia. "He accepted that she (go there) respecting Ukrainian sovereignty and therefore passing through Ukraine, under government control," added the French presidency.

Earlier, it was the UN Secretary General who sounded the alarm. "We must tell it like it is: any potential damage to Zaporijjia would be suicide," said Antonio Guterres, calling once again to "demilitarize" the plant.

“Zaporizhi is neither Chernobyl nor Fukushima”

The Zaporizhia nuclear power plant, which is located on the territory of the city of Enerhodar, 56 km south-west of Zaporizhia, however, has nothing to do with power plants like Chernobyl or Fukushima.

Indeed, the Zaporizhia power plant is more like French constructions, being covered by an envelope which serves as a shield. “The containment enclosure is made of reinforced concrete and is almost a meter thick”, explains Emmanuelle Galichet, doctor in nuclear physics and lecturer at the National Conservatory of Arts and Crafts (Cnam). As for the reactor core, it is enclosed in a vessel, itself protected by a reactor pit. And on the surface, a very robust slab limits breakage from falling heavy objects. This observation is also shared by Defense & International Security experts, for whom the plant's materials limit the risks of a terrible explosion. “The turbine building is constructed of concrete, with metal structures (walls/roof).

"It is not certain that the reactor building can be affected, nor that essential organs capable of releasing radioactivity (steam generators, primary loops, primary and auxiliary pumps) within it are", they conclude, confirming the words of the CNAM researcher: "Zaporijie is neither Chernobyl nor Fukushima: the containment structures differ".

But above all, many experts point out that both Russians and Ukrainians would have everything to lose by bombing the plant. “The Russians and Ukrainians are aware of the risk they pose to their population above all”. "More or less massive rejections are likely to pose a problem for the Russians themselves", also explains the specialists of the magazine Defense & International Security.

Would these mutual accusations then rather be part of a strategy of fear that plays on the anxiety of nuclear risks, exacerbated by nuclear disasters like that of Chernobyl ?




Alize Marion for DayNewsWorld

UK FIRST TELEVISION DUEL

BETWEEN LIZ TRUSS AND RISHI SUNAK

It was a tense televised debate, Monday evening July 25 in London, between the two finalists vying for the presidency of the Conservative Party and therefore the post of Prime Minister. Foreign Minister Liz Truss and former Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak clashed in a heated dialogue around mainly economic issues.

At the center of the quarrels indeed, taxes and their very different fiscal policies.

Liz Truss said she wanted to cut taxes: “Everyone understands that Covid-19 is a once in a century event and by trying to bail out we are hurting our economy, we end up by causing a recession, and we are putting people out of work, at the expense of taxpayers who work hard and see their taxes go up contrary to what we promised in our manifesto…”

For Rishi Sunak, there is "nothing conservative" in the approach of Liz Truss and her economic policy would lead to interest rates of 7%. For her part, she retorts that the strategy of the former chancellor could lead the country to recession and also wishes to draw up an immediate economic growth plan, and impose a temporary moratorium on the tax on green energy.

Opposite strategy for Rishi Sunak who, on the contrary, wants to increase taxes and have reserves to deal with inflation.

The deplorable state of the national healthcare system and Brexit were barely mentioned, but a new debate is scheduled for next week.

If Mr. Johnson's foreign minister had a difficult start in the campaign – she narrowly climbed into the leading duo – her positioning on the right of the party is starting to pay off. According to a YouGov poll published on July 21, 62% of party members polled preferred Liz Truss, compared to 38% saying they would choose Mr Sunak. According to a poll conducted by Opinium after the debate, 38% of those questioned (conservative voters or not) found Liz Truss the most convincing, 39% preferred her colleague.

The two contenders for the succession of Boris Johnson will be decided by a vote, from August 1 and until September 2, of the 160,000 members of the Conservative Party. The name of the new British Prime Minister will be announced on September 5.




Joanne Courbet for DayNewsWorld

AGREEMENT BETWEEN RUSSIA AND UKRAINE

FOR THE RESUME OF CEREAL EXPORTS

The outcome still seemed uncertain in the middle of the week. Ukraine and Russia, under the aegis of Turkey and the UN, have finally come to an agreement on the conditions for exporting Ukrainian cereals to the Black Sea, blocked in the ports. An agreement was signed this Friday, July 22, 2022 in Istanbul. Described as "very important" by the Kremlin, it was obtained after two months of discussions between the two camps. kyiv and Moscow signed two identical but separate texts - at the request of Ukraine, which refused to initial any document with Russia and had thus made it known that it would only sign this text with the UN and Turkey.

A control center in Istanbul

The inspection of the ships carrying the grain was a requirement of Moscow, which wanted to make sure that they would not simultaneously deliver weapons to Ukraine. A control and coordination center must therefore be established in Istanbul, with representatives of all the parties: a Ukrainian, a Russian, a Turk and a representative of the UN.

The inspections will not take place at sea as envisaged for a time for practical reasons, but in one of the Turkish ports. Conducted by representatives of the four parties, they will take place at the departure and arrival of ships. In addition to inspections, the experts will also be responsible for scheduling ship rotations in the Black Sea. Three or four weeks are still needed to finalize the details and make this center operational.

Safe shipping lanes

Russians and Ukrainians undertake to respect shipping lanes through the Black Sea free of any military activity. On the other hand, the negotiators gave up on clearing the Black Sea of ​​mines, mainly laid by kyiv to protect its coasts, for lack of time. “Clearing mines would have taken too long,” justified the UN, which specified that “Ukrainian pilots” would clear the way for cargo ships in territorial waters. Separately, Ukraine has suggested that these exports start from three ports - Odessa, Pivdenny and Chornomorsk - and hopes to be able to increase their number in the future.

20 to 25 million tonnes of cereals released

The agreement would be signed for four months and automatically renewed. If 20 to 25 million tonnes of cereals are currently overdue in the silos of Ukrainian ports, and at the rate of 8 million tonnes evacuated per month, this period of four months should be enough to sell off the stocks. The invasion of Ukraine by Russia - two countries which notably provide 30% of world wheat exports - has led to a surge in grain and oil prices as well as shortages on world markets.

This rise in prices has worsened the situation of countries already facing a food crisis, particularly in the Horn of Africa (Kenya, Ethiopia, Somalia, Djibouti) which is experiencing its worst drought in 40 years.

Famines also threaten other countries very dependent on cereals from Ukraine or Russia, such as Pakistan, which imports more than 80% of wheat from Ukraine, Lebanon more than 60% of its wheat, while Tunisia, Algeria and Libya are more than 40% wheat from Ukraine. The African Union (AU) also "welcomed" this Saturday, July 23, 2022 the agreement signed between Russia and Ukraine to unblock grain exports, a "welcome development" for the continent which faces at increased risk of starvation.

A reward for Russian products

A memorandum of understanding must accompany this agreement, signed by the United Nations and Russia, guaranteeing that Western sanctions against Moscow will not concern cereals and fertilizers, directly or indirectly.

This was a requirement from Russia, which made it a sine qua non for the signing of the agreement.

A failed deal?

Less than 24 hours after the signing of these agreements, Ukrainian territory was struck by the Russian army. If a dozen missiles were sent to the center of Ukraine, it was the Russian strikes which targeted the port of Odessa, a strategic point for the resumption of Ukrainian grain exports, which caused a strong reaction on Saturday.

By firing cruise missiles at the port of Odessa, the Russian president "spit in the face of UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres and Turkish President Recep (Tayyip) Erdogan, who have made enormous efforts to achieve this agreement,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Oleg Nikolenko said.

A little later this Saturday, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres declared "unequivocally condemning the strikes reported today in the Ukrainian port of Odessa" while the head of diplomacy of the European Union, Josep Borrell, also castigated Moscow's behavior.

"Hitting a crucial grain export target one day after the signing of the Istanbul Accords is particularly reprehensible and once again demonstrates Russia's utter disregard for international law and commitments," he said. wrote on Twitter.




Alize Marion for DayNewsWorld

MARIO DRAGHI'S RESIGNATION LEAVES ITALY

IN UNCERTAINTY


Three government parties on Wednesday refused to trust Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi in a vote in the Senate, forcing him out of power. Also, far from the bravado style of Boris Johnson taking leave of his parliamentary colleagues on a line from Terminator: “Hasta la vista, baby. “, Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi, 74, handed in his resignation to President Mattarella on Thursday morning almost on tiptoe. “Sometimes central bankers also use their hearts. he had however conceded, visibly moved, thanking the parliamentarians who cheered him on. In a statement read by his spokesperson, President Mattarella "took note", adding that the Draghi government would remain in place for the time being to expedite current affairs.

The “Super Mario” savior

In February 2021, the country saw in "Super Mario" a savior: the former boss of the European Central Bank agreed to play the tightrope walker by forming a government from the center-left to the far-right to deal with the urgency: to tackle the formidable debt (150% of national wealth) which earned Rome the wrath of the EU.

But for some time now the crisis has been brewing within this unlikely alliance.

On July 14, the populist Movement 5 Stars (M5S), which belonged to the government coalition, decided not to vote on a key text submitted to the Senate and experienced as a "vote of confidence" by the government. The party, itself deeply divided by a recent split and at half mast in the polls, felt that its priorities (establishment of a minimum wage and tax incentives for the energy renovation of homes) were not taken into account.

Arrived at the head of the executive in February 2021 to get Italy out of the health and economic crisis, Mario Draghi in turn felt that his government of national unity, ranging from the left to the far right, had been rendered obsolete by the gesture of the M5S. He had therefore presented his resignation the same day to President Sergio Mattarella … who had refused it. The centre-left (which fears that early elections will favor the right), a thousand mayors as well as several European officials (who see in him the white knight of budgetary orthodoxy) then urged the Prime Minister to remain in office .

For five days, Mario Draghi had been waiting for a “significant political gesture” to allow himself the possibility of changing his mind. He wanted confirmation that he was supported by a very large majority, ranging from right to left. And expected a formal commitment from the parties to continue the action launched 17 months ago. Apart from the Democratic Party (PD) and the centrists, unfailing allies of Draghi, neither the League and its ally Forza Italia nor the M5S had discovered their cards on Wednesday morning.

Wednesday's crazy day

Mario Draghi finally said he was ready to continue his mission if his coalition managed to unite to avoid early elections. “The only solution, if we still want to stay together, is to rebuild this pact from its foundations, with courage, altruism and credibility,” he declared before the Senate. "It's what the Italians demand," he added, with polls saying that two-thirds of his compatriots want "Super Mario" to remain at the helm. But he delivered yesterday, Wednesday July 20, 2022, an uncompromising speech in the Senate.

Indeed Mario Draghi, who appeared in the Senate to explain the reasons for his resignation, presented last Thursday and refused by the President of the Republic, chose to speak very frankly.

The President of the Italian Council did not hesitate to attack the behavior of the parties which led to disunity. “Unfortunately, for yearsmonths, at the citizens' request for cohesion, the political forces have opposed a growing desire for division, "he said. "The reforms of the Superior Council of the Judiciary, the cadastre and the beach concessions have shown a progressive fraying of the majority on the modernization of the country". So many measures that have seriously undermined the M5S and the League. He also denounces their “attempts to weaken the government's support for Ukraine, to weaken our opposition to President Putin's project”. Finally, he recalls the demands of the League, whose “calls for the continuation of indebtedness have multiplied at the very time when the need to ensure the sustainability of the debt was the strongest”. And points to the inconsistencies of the M5S: "It does not

Sparing no one, except the Democratic Party, which has never questioned its confidence, it announces the color: it intends to carry out all the reforms, including the most unpopular, such as the questioning of seaside concessions or the liberalization of taxis, against which the League has been fighting for several months.

Mario Draghi concludes: “Italy does not need cosmetic confidence, which disappears in the face of inconvenient measures. It needs a new pact of trust, sincere and concrete, like the one that has allowed us to change the country for the better so far,” he said.

National unity is over

The Senate gave him its confidence but three crucial allies dropped him: the 5 Star Movement, Forza Italia and the League decided to abstain in the vote of confidence after the speech of the former president of the Central Bank European Union (ECB). His message of unity went unheard. In question, officially: the M5S did not obtain satisfaction on its demands, and Forza Italia and the League refuse to remain in a government alongside the M5S, which "broke the pact of confidence" which sealed government unity after having boycotted the July 14 vote.

The "day of judgment", as defined by former Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, therefore ends Wednesday evening with the end of the government of Mario Draghi. National unity is over.

The government falls but the problems remain. Italy, ultra-dependent on Russian gas (43% of its imports) is taking the brunt of the war in Ukraine. Its inflation is racing (8%)...

The ball is now in the court of the President of the Italian Republic, Sergio Mattarella. He will probably decide to dissolve the Chambers. Early general elections could be organized on 2nd October next.

A political crisis that weighs down the euro zone and sends a message of disunity to Russia. "Moscow is delighted to see Draghi's head served on a platter to Putin", warns the head of Italian diplomacy, Luigi Di Maio.



Joanne Courbet for DayNewsWorld

The “Super Mario” savior

In February 2021, the country saw in "Super Mario" a savior: the former boss of the European Central Bank agreed to play the tightrope walker by forming a government from the center-left to the far-right to deal with the urgency: to tackle the formidable debt (150% of national wealth) which earned Rome the wrath of the EU.

But for some time now the crisis has been brewing within this unlikely alliance.

On July 14, the populist Movement 5 Stars (M5S), which belonged to the government coalition, decided not to vote on a key text submitted to the Senate and experienced as a "vote of confidence" by the government. The party, itself deeply divided by a recent split and at half mast in the polls, felt that its priorities (establishment of a minimum wage and tax incentives for the energy renovation of homes) were not taken into account.

 Arrived at the head of the executive in February 2021 to get Italy out of the health and economic crisis, Mario Draghi in turn felt that his government of national unity, ranging from the left to the far right, had been rendered obsolete by the gesture of the M5S. He had therefore presented his resignation the same day to President Sergio Mattarella … who had refused it. The centre-left (which fears that early elections will favor the right), a thousand mayors as well as several European officials (who see in him the white knight of budgetary orthodoxy) then urged the Prime Minister to remain in office .

For five days, Mario Draghi had been waiting for a “significant political gesture” to allow himself the possibility of changing his mind. He wanted confirmation that he was supported by a very large majority, ranging from right to left. And expected a formal commitment from the parties to continue the action launched 17 months ago. Apart from the Democratic Party (PD) and the centrists, unfailing allies of Draghi, neither the League and its ally Forza Italia nor the M5S had discovered their cards on Wednesday morning.

Wednesday's crazy day

Mario Draghi finally said he was ready to continue his mission if his coalition managed to unite to avoid early elections. “The only solution, if we still want to stay together, is to rebuild this pact from its foundations, with courage, altruism and credibility,” he declared before the Senate. "It's what the Italians demand," he added, with polls saying that two-thirds of his compatriots want "Super Mario" to remain at the helm. But he delivered yesterday, Wednesday July 20, 2022, an uncompromising speech in the Senate.

Indeed Mario Draghi, who appeared in the Senate to explain the reasons for his resignation, presented last Thursday and refused by the President of the Republic, chose to speak very frankly.

The President of the Italian Council did not hesitate to attack the behavior of the parties which led to disunity. “Unfortunately, for yearsmonths, at the citizens' request for cohesion, the political forces have opposed a growing desire for division, "he said. "The reforms of the Superior Council of the Judiciary, the cadastre and the beach concessions have shown a progressive fraying of the majority on the modernization of the country". So many measures that have seriously undermined the M5S and the League. He also denounces their “attempts to weaken the government's support for Ukraine, to weaken our opposition to President Putin's project”. Finally, he recalls the demands of the League, whose “calls for the continuation of indebtedness have multiplied at the very time when the need to ensure the sustainability of the debt was the strongest”. And points to the inconsistencies of the M5S: "It does not

Sparing no one, except the Democratic Party, which has never questioned its confidence, it announces the color: it intends to carry out all the reforms, including the most unpopular, such as the questioning of seaside concessions or the liberalization of taxis, against which the League has been fighting for several months.

Mario Draghi concludes: “Italy does not need cosmetic confidence, which disappears in the face of inconvenient measures. It needs a new pact of trust, sincere and concrete, like the one that has allowed us to change the country for the better so far,” he said.

National unity is over

The Senate gave him its confidence but three crucial allies dropped him: the 5 Star Movement, Forza Italia and the League decided to abstain in the vote of confidence after the speech of the former president of the Central Bank European Union (ECB). His message of unity went unheard. In question, officially: the M5S did not obtain satisfaction on its demands, and Forza Italia and the League refuse to remain in a government alongside the M5S, which "broke the pact of confidence" which sealed government unity after having boycotted the July 14 vote.

The "day of judgment", as defined by former Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, therefore ends Wednesday evening with the end of the government of Mario Draghi. National unity is over.

The government falls but the problems remain. Italy, ultra-dependent on Russian gas (43% of its imports) is taking the brunt of the war in Ukraine. Its inflation is racing (8%)...

 The ball is now in the court of the President of the Italian Republic, Sergio Mattarella. He will probably decide to dissolve the Chambers. Early general elections could be organized on 2nd October next.

A political crisis that weighs down the euro zone and sends a message of disunity to Russia. "Moscow is delighted to see Draghi's head served on a platter to Putin", warns the head of Italian diplomacy, Luigi Di Maio

KREMLIN THREATS TO LONG RANGE WEAPONS DELIVERIES TO UKRAINE

Moscow ups the ante again by threatening to spread the conflict beyond the Donbass if long-range weapons like the Himars are supplied to Ukraine.

“We cannot allow Ukraine to have weapons that will directly threaten our territory,” Sergei Lavrov said.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Wednesday that Russia's territorial goals in Ukraine are no longer limited to the eastern region of Donbass, according to Russian news agency RIA Novosti. Russia is no longer targeting "only the people's republics of Donetsk and Lugansk", the two self-proclaimed separatist republics of Donbass, but also "the regions of Kherson and Zaporizhya and a series of other territories, and this process continues, steadily" .

He justified the change as "different geography" compared to the situation on the ground at the end of March, when Moscow said it wanted to focus on the east after failing to seize kyiv.

Reprisals against Westerners

The head of Russian diplomacy clarified that the objectives of what Moscow describes as a “special military operation” could be further revised upwards if the West supplied long-range weapons to Ukraine.

“Because we cannot allow the part of Ukraine that Zelensky will control or whoever replaces him to have weapons that will directly threaten our territory and the territory of the republics that have declared their independence”

This threat to conquer new Ukrainian territories is indeed a response and a threat to kyiv and the West, whose cannon deliveries are changing the balance of power on the battlefield.

The twelve HIMARS batteries delivered by Washington, by striking in depth the Russian ammunition depots contributed to stopping the Russian offensive, in the east, after the fall of the twin cities of Severodonetsk and Lyssytchansk.

They can fire high-precision missiles up to 80 km, twice the range of other batteries deployed on the battlefield, and move immediately after firing, avoiding any retaliation. Washington will announce in the coming days new military aid to kyiv, probably in the form of ATACMS missiles, with a range of 300 km.

Vladimir Putin had already demanded in January-February that kyiv undertake never to join NATO and that Western forces can no longer be deployed on the territory of the fourteen Eastern countries that joined the Atlantic Alliance following the disappearance of the Soviet bloc...


Alize Marion for DayNewsWorld

TOWARDS SOLUTIONS TO THE SHORTAGE OF GAS IN EUROPE AND PARTICULARLY IN FRANCE

Since the outbreak of the war in Ukraine and the reductions in Russian gas deliveries, the EU has been seeking to diversify its supplies in order to quickly free itself from its great dependence on Russian gas. Since gas is used both as it is and for the production of electricity, a shortage would create a very complex situation for consumers in France.

Before the war in Ukraine, Russia covered about 40% of European gas consumption. This figure fell to nearly 20% for France, a lower share, but far from negligible. Although our country is not the most dependent on Russian gas, it must still develop viable supply routes to compensate for the future shortfall. A shortage would indeed have serious consequences for households, as well as for French businesses and industries.

Electricity production, already weakened by the shutdown of twelve nuclear reactors due to a corrosion defect and by the drought which reduces the filling of hydroelectric dams, must also be closely monitored: the shutdown of imports of Russian gas would come on top of these short-term difficulties.

Gas stocks being filled

First of all, it is necessary to diversify its sources of supply, to develop its self-sufficiency over a given period and, of course, to ensure that gas stocks are optimally filled. Thierry Trouvou, CEO of GRTgaz, explained on Franceinfo on May 24, 2022: “The challenge of the summer is to fill the storages correctly”.

Today, French stocks are 63.6% full. Although the strong upward momentum is usual at the start of the summer, this figure is significantly higher than in 2021 at the same period (49.73%). This speaks to the focus on the goal of filling gas stocks in this time of energy uncertainty.

If the European Union has filled exactly 58.92% of its reserves, strong disparities between the States remain. Thus, Germany is at about the same level as France with 61.85% occupancy, as is Italy (59.85%). Portugal and Poland are well ahead, with almost full reserves (100% and 97.46% respectively). On the other hand, the situation is more difficult for Austria (45.58% occupancy) and Bulgaria (35.27%), among others.

“CRE, in coordination with the government, is working on adapting the regulation of storage operators to meet the challenges of this new context. (...) The good level of storage subscription for the winter of 2022-2023, the limited dependence on Russian gas and access to supplies of Norwegian gas and liquefied natural gas, allow France to approach more serenely than many of its neighbors the storage filling campaign which is beginning". Another source of supply has just been added for storage. Visiting Baku on Monday July 18, Ursula von der Leyen announced an agreement with Azerbaijan to double European gas imports from the former Soviet republic “within a few years”.

For the short term, the new law on purchasing power organizes France's energy sovereignty The law on purchasing power will be examined by the National Assembly from July 18, 2022. It provides in particular for a section on France's energy independence, which it intends to articulate around four axes: the requisition of gas-fired power stations, the forced filling of storage, derogations to speed up the installation of the LNG terminal in Le Havre and the restart of the coal-fired power station of Saint-Avold.

Added to this is a gas shedding plan which has been put in place by the French government in particular. Indeed, decree 2022-85 of April 8, 2022, on gas shedding, published in the official journal, aims to authorize targeted gas supply cuts at given sites and for a limited period.

Load shedding thus makes it possible to avoid any black-out during peak hours, while favoring supply in essential places such as schools, hospitals or even nursing homes. “For the site, load shedding consists of carrying out a significant reduction in consumption in less than 2 hours. It is a regulatory obligation that applies to all customers approached by GRDF under the texts in force”, indicates GRDF. It only concerns very large gas consumers, ie those who consume more than 5 GWh per year (whether they are connected to the GRTgaz, Téréga or GRDF transmission networks).

The load shedding measures will be applied as a priority to gas-intensive industries such as tile works, steelworks, papermakers, chemists and several tertiary companies.

For the longer term, three other options are being considered :

Importing liquefied natural gas (LNG) in larger quantities: Engie and the American Nextdecade have already signed a contract for 1.75 million tonnes of LNG delivered to France between 2026 and 2041. This solution, however, requires the creation of LNG terminals adapted to accommodate and regasify LNG. A LNG terminal ship project in the port of Le Havre, in collaboration with Engie and TotalEnergies, is under development. The problem is that LNG comes from a process that has a strong impact on the environment, which makes it an unsustainable and non-ecological solution;

Increasing the share of renewable energies in the French and European energy mix: the REPowerEU plan thus plans to inject 113 billion euros to massively deploy renewable energies, and in particular solar energy, in the EU. For example, all public and commercial buildings over 250 m2 and new residential buildings will need to have rooftop solar panels. On the other hand, the delays in obtaining installation permits for solar and wind infrastructures will be reduced;

The energy sobriety approach: gestures to reduce consumption from all consumers, individuals, professionals, industrialists and state bodies, is an immediate solution to reduce the risk of running out of gas during the winter. "The best energy remains that which we do not consume", affirmed the leaders of TotalEnergies (Patrick Pouyanné), EDF (Jean-Bernard Levy) and Engie (Catherine MacGregor) in an unpublished joint forum published in the Journal from Sunday June 26, 2022.

The three energy companies thus call for "awareness and collective and individual action so that each of us - each consumer, each company - changes its behavior and immediately limits its consumption of energy, electricity, gas and petroleum products". 

For some, the EU must take advantage of this crisis to accelerate the energy transition...




Sandra Stac for DayNewsWorld

UNITED KINGDOM

THE BATTLE FOR THE SUCCESSION OF

BORIS JOHNSON IS LAUNCHED

Prime Minister Boris Johnson had no choice but to resign, Thursday, July 7, 2022, from the head of the Conservative Party, entangled in a series of scandals. He has not yet left Downing Street, specifying that he will remain in power until his successor is appointed. The spokesman for Mr. Johnson has indeed ruled out that the Deputy Prime Minister, Dominic Raab, will act as interim.

“The Prime Minister acts in accordance with the convention. He remains prime minister until a new party leader is in place and the work of government will continue during that time,” he said.

Details of the procedure to succeed him will be announced on Monday by the 1922 Committee, a Conservative parliamentary group. The designation of the new leader of the tories, who will become prime minister – the party having the majority in the House of Commons – must take place before the annual convention of the party, on October 2, in Birmingham.

Battle for succession

However, the battle for his succession at the head of the party has already begun.

Cited among the favorites to succeed Boris Johnson at the head of the Conservative Party, British Defense Minister Ben Wallace has announced that he will not enter the race. “After careful consideration and discussion with my colleagues and my family, I have made the decision not to enter the race for the leadership of the Conservative Party,” he wrote on Twitter, explaining that he wanted to concentrate on its current task and "ensure the security of the country".

Of the four other candidates who have so far formalized their candidacy - former Equality Minister Kemi Badenock, MP Tom Tugendhat, Attorney General Suella Braverman and Rishi Sunak - only the latter, the resigning Finance Minister, stands out. of heavy weight. Rishi Sunak was one of the very first to position himself for his succession at the head of the Conservative Party, and therefore at the head of the government.

“I am running to be the next leader of the Conservative Party and your Prime Minister. Let's restore confidence, rebuild the economy and bring the country together,” he said on Twitter. “My values ​​are non-negotiable, patriotism, justice and hard work,” he added in a video where he notably underlines the importance of his family. Since his declaration of candidacy on Friday evening, Rishi Sunak is the one who has garnered the most support from MPs.

His ideology is close to hard conservatism: in favor of a large reduction in taxes, the role of the state, public spending and for a stricter approach to immigration. The Rishi brand is also a deputy always dressed to the nines, tailored suits and slicked back hair… Arguments that resonate with activists who place him for the moment (and by a small majority) in the lead in the polls.

However, the richest member of the House of Commons enters the campaign with a few pans. He will have to assume his support for Boris Johnson despite Partygate. He himself was fined for having participated in a party in Downing Street. And his wife, Akshata Murthy, daughter of an Indian billionaire, also cast doubt on the couple's finances after it was revealed a few months ago that she was not domiciled for tax purposes in the UK.

Daughter of the founder of Infosys, a highly rated technology giant in India and the United States, she owns just under 1% of the company, which last year allowed her to receive almost 14 million euros in dividends. She kept her Indian nationality and remains officially domiciled in India. A situation that Rishi Sunak has never hidden from the government or the Treasury, and which is not illegal.

Akshata Murthy has since said she would change her tax residency so as not to penalize her husband.




Joanne Courbet for DayNewsWorld

DESPITE SERIAL RESIGNATIONS IN HIS GOVERNMENT BORIS JOHNSON HOLDS ON

IN HIS POST OF PRIME MINISTER

Boris Johnson has suffered for two days an avalanche of resignations within his government which weakens his authority, already damaged by a succession of scandals. After the resounding departures Tuesday July 5, 2022 of the Ministers of Health Sajid Javid and Finance, Rishi Sunak, several other members of the British government slammed the door, Wednesday July 6, bringing to twenty the total number of resignations this year.

Call for the resignation of Boris Johnson

The Secretary of State in charge of children and the family, Will Quince, judged that he had "no choice", after having repeated "in good faith" in the media elements provided by the services of the Prime Minister "which turned out to be inaccurate". The assistant to the Secretary of State for Transport, Laura Trott, resigned, judging that confidence was "lost". Finally, the Minister responsible for school standards, Robin Walker, explained that his decision stemmed from his regret that the Conservative Party had “been diverted from its primary mission because of permanent questions about its leadership team”.

Five other members of government - Minister of State for Regional Growth and Local Government Kemi Badenoch, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Upgrading, Housing and Communities Neil O'Brien, Deputy -Parliamentary Secretary of State for Learning and Skills Alex Burghart, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Business and Industry Lee Rowley and Minister of State for Media and Data Julia Lopez – announced their resignation on Wednesday afternoon in a joint press release; they thank Boris Johnson for his action, but call on him to resign “for the good of the party and the country”. “We must ask that, for the good of the party and the country, you step down”, they told him writing.

"The Colossal Mandate"

But ignoring calls to leave, Boris Johnson instead claimed the “colossal mandate” given to him by voters in 2019 gave him a duty to “carry on”. "A prime minister's job in difficult circumstances, when you have been given a colossal mandate, is to keep moving forward," he said. In front of the deputies, he notably defended the action of his government, praising tax cuts.

Opposition Labor leader Keir Starmer blasted a "pathetic spectacle", while Scottish National Party (SNP) leader in the House of Commons, Ian Blackford, demanded a snap election.

But Boris Johnson also excludes any attempt to organize early elections. "I really don't believe that anyone in this country wants politicians to engage in elections now," he told the heads of parliamentary committees. “I believe that we must continue to serve our constituents, and take care of the issues that matter to them,” he added.

A Prime Minister rejected by the population

After the scandals that overwhelmed his mandate, Boris Johnson is however in the sights of the British. According to a YouGov poll carried out after the resignations of Sajid Javid and Rishi Sunak, 69% want the departure of the man who allowed them to leave the European Union. More than half (54%) of Conservative voters in 2019 think the Prime Minister should step down. The economic context is, moreover, particularly delicate, with inflation at its highest for forty years, at 9.1% in May over twelve months. After a historic strike by railway workers at the end of June, the unions have already called for a “summer of discontent” and several professions – lawyers, health workers, teachers – have called for social movements.

Could "BoJo" be at a point of no return ?




Joanne Courbet for DayNewsWorld

A DEADLY SHOOTING IN DENMARK

Several people were hit by gunfire yesterday, July 3, 2022, in a large shopping center in Copenhagen, the capital of Denmark. The police reported, in the middle of the evening, "several deaths" as well as many injuries.

"We do not yet know for sure how many are injured or dead, but it is very serious", declared, shortly before 7:30 p.m., the mayor of Copenhagen, Sophie Haestorp Andersen, on Twitter.

The management of the city's main hospital, the Rigshospitalet, told Reuters that the establishment had received "a small group of patients" for treatment and that additional staff, including surgeons and nurses, had been called in to help. .

According to national television DR, three people were hospitalized, but this assessment does not include possible support on the spot.

“One person has been arrested in connection with the shooting,” police said on Twitter earlier this evening. He is a young Dane aged 22. In a press conference, Copenhagen Police Chief Inspector Søren Thomassen explained that the police were alerted shortly after 5.30 p.m. and that heavy reinforcements were then dispatched to the area around the mall, in the Amager district, located between the city center and the airport of the capital.

When the first shots were heard, more than a hundred people rushed outside the shopping mall, according to witnesses quoted by Danish media.

Last night, the police said they could not rule out the fact that it was a terrorist attack.




Jenny Chase for DayNewsWorld

ESSENTIAL REFORMS TO MAKE

 FOR UKRAINE CANDIDATE TO THE EUROPEAN UNION

The member countries of the European Union decided on Thursday, June 23, 2022 to grant the status of candidate for EU membership to Ukraine, accompanied by Moldova. Since the beginning of the Russian invasion, Kiev has not has ceaselessly pleaded this cause with the Twenty-Seven. This historic decision is highly symbolic. This new candidate status indeed sends a message to Russia, which refuses that Ukraine can have a European path and acknowledges the sovereignty of Ukraine and the recognition of this sovereignty by the EU.
The status of candidate country thus opens the way to a possible integration of Ukraine into the Union and makes it possible to begin discussions. But the road to integration is still long and could take "decades", put Emmanuel Macron into perspective during the press conference at the end of the European summit on Friday afternoon. Ukraine will indeed have to make changes, political, environmental, economic, in order to correspond to the standards of membership of EU countries. Many challenges therefore await the country in this matter.

There are indeed stages in the process of applying for membership of the Union. The very first stage, which consists of saying that the Member States of the Union have recognized Ukraine as a candidate after the drawing up of a report by the European Commission, has just been crossed. The European Union will then have to decide unanimously on the concrete launch of the accession process, with negotiations between the EU and Ukraine. However, one of the conditions for the opening of any accession negotiations is the return to peace and the reconstruction of the country, a country at war being unable to negotiate its entry into the Union.

In order to qualify for entry into the European Union, Ukraine must also rise to European standards so that many reforms will have to be set in motion, Ukraine being far from fulfilling the criteria for membership of the European Union. 'European Union.

To do this, Ukraine must adapt its legislation and modes of governance to those of the EU. The country is affected by an endemic corruption phenomenon (in 2021, Ukraine obtained a score of 32/100 in the corruption perception index established by the German anti-corruption NGO, Transparency International Editor's note). It is a country where oligarchs rule the economy. The independence of justice is a fiction. All these points are the priority projects of the reform. Moreover, before being able to enter the EU, Ukraine was largely destroyed by the action of the Russian army. will have to be rebuilt.

Once all the negotiations have been completed, the entry of Ukraine will have to be validated one last time by all the member countries of the EU. For EU enlargement, the decision-making rule is that of unanimity. Countries like Poland or the Baltic countries will be very accommodating with Ukraine because they consider that, geopolitically, Ukraine's entry into the EU is a priority factor for stability.

But other countries, like France, the Netherlands or Spain will not want an ill-prepared Ukraine. The path may therefore be long.



Joanne Courbet for DayNewsWorld

ESSENTIAL REFORMS TO MAKE

 FOR UKRAINE CANDIDATE TO THE EUROPEAN UNION

WAR IN UKRAINE

ARM WARRIOR AROUND KALININGRAD RUSSIAN ENCLAVE IN THE HEART OF EUROPE

Lithuania has blocked the transit of Russian products affected by European sanctions intended for the enclave of Kaliningrad, attracting direct threats from Moscow. This crisis has great potential for escalation.

The Kaliningrad enclave

After the Second World War, the USSR received compensation from Germany for the city of Königsberg, renamed Kaliningrad, with a 70-kilometre corridor named Suwalki to connect it to Belarus, then within the Soviet Union. This small territory of 15,000 kilometers and a million inhabitants is a piece of the Russian Federation, over-armed, wedged between Poland and Lithuania. It is supplied via the corridor named Suwalki straddling the borders of Poland and Lithuania, both members of the European Union and NATO.

However, Lithuania has decided to apply the European sanctions concerning approximately half of the Russian products destined for Kaliningrad. Moscow has called for the immediate lifting of this ban considered "illegal". Indeed, the implementation of this transit was one of the conditions imposed on Lithuania when it joined the EU in 2024.

“A blockade” according to Moscow

Since Monday, June 20, 2022, Russia has therefore reacted with threatening words: if transit is not restored in full, Moscow said, “then Russia reserves the right to act to defend its national interests”. The Russian authorities are promising an appropriate reaction to what Moscow now considers a blockade of the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad, while Vilnius has started to apply European sanctions which affect the transit of certain goods transported by train through Lithuanian territory between mainland Russia and the enclave. European retaliatory measures mainly concern coal, metals and construction materials, and will be extended in July to cement and alcohol. Kaliningrad Governor Anton Alikhanov

Russian Chargé d'Affaires in Lithuania Sergey Ryabokon said the transit ban was no longer just a matter of applying sanctions: "This is a blockade, a partial blockade shipments that they implement in this way against our region. » . Words that weigh heavily, because its implementation could be likened to an act of war, Moscow being able to see in this action an additional commitment on the part of NATO.

If Russia decides to retaliate, or even forcibly restore transit from Kaliningrad to Belarus and then to Russia, there is a considerable risk of escalation. The risk is all the greater as Kaliningrad is one of the most militarized places in the world. Including Iskander ballistic missiles, and nuclear weapons. It is also the headquarters of the Russian Baltic Fleet.

The birthplace of the philosopher Kant is becoming a fixation abscess of the Russia-West confrontation..




Joanne Courbet for DayNewsWorld

THE FUTURE OF BORIS JOHNSON AT STAKE

BY A MOTION OF DEFIANCE FROM HIS PARTY

After the respite of the four holidays of the jubilee of Elizabeth II, the rights of politics resume their course.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, weakened by months of Downing Street holiday scandals during lockdowns, will face a vote of no confidence from Conservative Party MPs on Monday night.

"The threshold of 15% of parliamentarians requesting a vote of confidence from the leader of the Conservative Party has been exceeded," said Graham Brady, chairman of the 1922 committee in charge of internal organizational matters, in a press release. It took 54 letters from MPs to trigger this vote.

The ballot will be held between 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. (local time) (between 7 p.m. and 9 p.m.) and the result announced in stride.

“The Prime Minister welcomes the opportunity to present his case to MPs and will remind them that there is no more formidable political force than when they are united and focused on the issues that matter to voters . »

“(The vote) tonight offers an opportunity to end months of speculation and allow the government to draw a line and move on by responding to the priorities of the people”, reacted the spokesperson for Boris Johnson in a statement.

If the Prime Minister receives the confidence of less than 50% of his troops, he will lose the leadership of his party, which will have to choose a new Prime Minister.

If he wins, no other vote of no confidence can be organized for a year, even if Graham Brady affirms that it would be "technically possible" to change this internal rule of the Conservative party.

A drop in popularity with electoral consequences

Far from putting an end to the scandal that has plagued the Conservative government for six months, the publication last week of an administrative report detailing the extent of violations of anti-Covid rules in Downing Street has prompted new calls for the resignation. Boris Johnson, himself subject to a fine (unheard of for a Prime Minister in office), then said that he assumed "full responsibility for everything that happened" but felt he had to "continue" his work.

The scandal, along with soaring prices that are causing a historic drop in household purchasing power, has already caused its popularity to plummet, leading to heavy setbacks for the Conservatives in local elections in early May. He was maintained by highlighting in particular the context of the war in Ukraine, but also for lack of an obvious successor in the ranks of the Conservatives, in power for 12 years in the United Kingdom.

If the Prime Minister is defeated by a motion of no confidence, an internal election will be held within the party to appoint a new leader. If he survives there, he cannot be dislodged for a year.

Two partial legislative elections are scheduled for June 23, the next date likely to relaunch the revolt against the head of government.


Joanne Courbet for DayNewsWorld

WILL THE RUSSIAN APPETITE GO TO TRANSNITRIA ?

The war in Ukraine does not fail to worry the neighboring countries and, first of all, the small Moldavia (2.6 million inhabitants), which today plays an essential role in the reception of refugees from South Ukraine.

The situation of this former Soviet republic, independent since 1991 and neutral since 1994, wedged between a Romania that is a member of NATO and a Ukraine at war, is all the more precarious in that it has had to deal almost, since its independence, with a pro-Russian separatist territory located in its eastern part, Transnistria.

This last entity, where some 470,000 people reside, hosts around 1,500 Russian soldiers, present as part of a peacekeeping mission, as well as large stocks of armaments inherited from the USSR.

If the clashes between Transnistrians and Moldavians have not resumed since July 1992, and if the two parties coexist in a relatively serene way, maintaining in particular quite extensive commercial exchanges, the situation in Ukraine, and possible Russian appetites for Transnistria could in the short term weaken this balance.

From the conflict of 1992 to today

Without going into too detailed a chronology, let us briefly recall that, after the First World War, Bessarabia, whose territory more or less corresponds to present-day Moldova (minus Transnistria), and which had belonged for a century to the empire of the tsars, is integrated into Romania. The territory of present-day Transnistria remains in the hands of the USSR. In 1924, the latter established an administrative entity there called Autonomous Soviet Socialist Moldavian Republic (RASSM), which was incorporated into the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic.

In 1940, the USSR occupied and annexed Bessarabia, which it hastened to merge with the RASSM to create a “Soviet Socialist Republic of Moldavia”.

The Moldavian SSR will remain for fifty years within the USSR, as an equal of the fourteen other Republics (Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, the three Baltic republics, the three Caucasian republics and the five Central Asian republics) and will therefore become independent in 1991, when the USSR collapses.

At that time, the union of Transnistria and Bessarabia was already cracked. For some years now, feeling the USSR wavering, Bessarabia has seriously considered joining Romania. Transnistria, with close ties to Moscow, decided to secede in 1990, but the Soviet center rejected this option. It is therefore together, as the State of Moldova, that Bessarabia and Transnistria gained independence in 1991. Transnistria immediately proclaimed its independence from Moldova, which led to a violent conflict soon after. From March 1992 until the ceasefire of July 21, 1992, the 14th Russian Army, which had come to support the Transistrian separatists, and the Moldovan forces engaged in violent clashes, which killed more than 2,000 people.

A frozen conflict

Since then, the conflict has not known any new episodes and is said to be "frozen", an expression which can moreover be advantageously replaced by the epithet "unresolved", Transnistria being de facto independent, but recognized by no State, not even Russia, which nevertheless largely supports it. It was to find a diplomatic and political solution to this status quo that Moldova adopted the status of a neutral country when it adopted its Constitution in 1994.

Over the past 28 years, the country's various political tendencies that have succeeded each other in power, whether they have been classified as pro-Russian (like Igor Dodon, president from 2016 to 2020) or pro-European, like the current president Maïa Sandu, all wanted to keep this status. It implies Moldova's non-adherence to a military alliance such as NATO, but also demands the departure from Transnistria of Russian troops present since 1992. This departure is regularly demanded by the Moldovan authorities in international forums. Again recently, Maïa Sandu reiterated this requirement, receiving a dismissal from the spokesperson for the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Maria Zakharova.

Since the end of hostilities in 1992, a negotiation format has taken place, including Russia, Ukraine, the OSCE, as well as Moldova and Transnistria, in order to find the way to a political settlement through some form autonomy of Transnistria within a reintegrated Moldova.

Alas, Russia, if it never recognized the independence of Transnistria, did not help in a decisive way to settle the conflict either. It had proposed its own solution in 2003 through the Kozak memorandum (named after the Russian negotiator Dmitry Kozak, born in Ukraine and now deputy head of the Russian presidential administration in charge of relations with Ukraine), but this attempt was not successful. While discussions have continued since then, there has not been a high-level meeting since the fall of 2019.

The fact remains that – at least until Russia's invasion of Ukraine on February 24 – this conflict probably appeared to be the one with the best chance of being resolved of all conflicts. post-soviet frosts. After three decades without confrontation, a modus vivendi has emerged between the two parties, with tensions limited and expressed in interpersonal terms, while economic pragmatism has pushed for relatively close relations. Thus, the Sheriff Tiraspol football club (Tiraspol is the “capital” of Transnistria), which distinguished itself during its participation in the Champions League this year, plays in the Moldavian championship. Proof that a space of coexistence between Moldovans and Transnistrians is possible, at least on sports grounds!

First, is Moldova moving closer to open conflict with Russia? For the time being, the authorities in Chisinau are mainly focused on welcoming Ukrainian refugees and on the energy issue, considering that the extension of the war to their territory is unlikely. Several observers, such as the Romanian Mircea Geoana, deputy secretary general of NATO, or the American ambassador to Moldova, Kent Logsdon, share this opinion. It is true that Moldova is less important for Moscow than Ukraine.

On a military level, the development of the region depends directly on the fate reserved for the port of Odessa, a city in southern Ukraine located some 60 kilometers only from Moldova. Indeed, if Mariupol makes it possible to close off the Sea of ​​Azov, the port of Odessa allows Russia to control the whole of the Ukrainian coastline, cutting Ukrainian territory off from access to the sea. In this case, one can estimate that the number of refugees would still grow in Moldova, when it has already seen 360,000 people pass through since the start of the war.

This objective of controlling the coastline certainly explains the extent of the attacks against Mykolaev, a town bitterly disputed between Russians and Ukrainians. It is only after the eventual fall of Mykolaev and Odessa that Russia can afford a corridor towards Transnistria; it is not certain, at the same time, that Transnistria can play a decisive role in the Russian offensive in the region, given the low number of men available.

The war in Ukraine has also prompted several countries to move towards the European Union. Thus, like Ukraine before it, and at the same time as Georgia, Moldova applied for membership of the European Union. If the "fast track" demanded by these three countries does not exist in practice, these requests have at least had the merit of drawing the attention of European capitals to the fate of these countries, as well as to their request for membership.

Although Georgia and Moldova have taken a stand in favor of respect for the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine, these two countries have not, on the other hand, endorsed the policy of sanctions adopted by the EU. The Moldovan Minister of Foreign Affairs, Nicu Popescu, indeed conceded that it would be difficult to adopt the sanctions without suffering insurmountable reprisals. It should be noted that in 2014, Moldova did not support the sanctions imposed on Russia after the annexation of Crimea.

Tensions further rekindled by a Council of Europe resolution

Finally, on the diplomatic level, Russia's departure from the Council of Europe had a direct impact on Moldova. Indeed, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) passed a resolution in which Transnistria was described as a Russian occupation zone.

This interpretation naturally aroused disputes in Tiraspol. Authorities in Transdniestria called the document "detached from reality" and "extremely dangerous", as well as in Moscow where the resolution is considered to ignore the realities on the ground. Moldovan Foreign Minister Nicu Popescu contented himself with recalling that this resolution reflected “the political opinion of parliamentarians from member countries of the Council of Europe”. At the same time, Popescu stressed that Chisinau will continue to seek solutions for the reintegration of the country and insist on the withdrawal of Russian troops from the territory of Moldova.

In conclusion, while concerns about a resumption of conflict are at their highest for three decades, Moldova is currently relying on its status as a neutral state to avoid being drawn into the war in turn.

But the caution of the Chisinau authorities will probably not weigh heavily if Vladimir Putin manages to seize Odessa and decide that Transnistria will be the next stage of his war...

Florent Parmentier

Secretary General of CEVIPOF. Teacher at Sciences Po. Research associate at the HEC Paris Center for Geopolitics, Sciences Po. Article published in TheConversation..




Simon Freeman for DayNewsWorld

A PACK OF NEW EU SANCTIONS

AGAINST RUSSIA

At the end of a European summit in Brussels, Emmanuel Macron detailed, Tuesday, May 31, 2O22, the sanctions taken by the European Union against Moscow after its offensive in Ukraine.

1° Reduce EU imports of Russian oil by 90% by the end of the year. The agreement provides for a temporary exemption to transport Russian oil by pipeline in order to lift Hungary's veto.

2° Extend the blacklist to eighty Russian oligarchs.

3° Prohibit three television channels.

4° Exclude Russian banks from the Swift international system, including Sberbank

For the Head of State, “this sixth package [of sanctions against Russia] is historic. Exemption measures have been decided for very dependent States (…) and which do not have access to the sea, in a very specific framework with a time limit of eighteen to twenty-four months”. “We are sanctioning Russia and we are helping Ukraine because there is a war on our continent decided by Russia against a people, against democracy. Our objective is always the same: to stop the war without participating. »

Emmanuel Macron also announced that he had proposed to Vladimir Putin the vote of a resolution at the UN to lift the Russian blockade of the port of Odessa in order to allow the export of Ukrainian cereals which are blocked there. "I proposed, in the discussion we had with Olaf Scholz [the German Chancellor] last Saturday, to President Putin that we take the initiative of a resolution at the United Nations to give a very clear framework to this operation" , he declared after a European summit in Brussels.

Emmanuel Macron also reacted to the death of Frédéric Leclerc-Imhoff, a French journalist killed by shrapnel in the Donbass, while he was in a humanitarian convoy.

He “condemned in the strongest terms” the “unacceptable” remarks by Russian officials questioning the young man's status as a journalist.


Boby Dean for DayNewsWorld

THE ISSUES OF MEMBERSHIP IN NATO

FROM FINLAND AND SWEDEN

After nearly decades spent on the sidelines of military alliances, Finland announced on Sunday, May 15, its candidacy for NATO, and Sweden could follow. Both countries are worried about what their big neighbor Russia might do after the invasion of Ukraine that began in February.

For decades, most Swedes and Finns remained committed to their long policy of military non-alignment. But the invasion of Ukraine on February 24 marked a major turning point, especially for Finland, which shares a border of nearly 1,300 kilometers with Russia.

While support for joining NATO has hovered around 20 to 30% for 20 years, the latest polls now suggest that more than 70% of Finns and 50% of Swedes support membership. In both countries, many parties have been or are changing their position on the issue. In the Finnish Parliament, a river majority of at least 85% in favor of membership is emerging. In Sweden, the Social Democratic Party, historically opposed to joining NATO, decides this Sunday, with a green light paving the way for a candidacy of the country.

So that's the end of the doctrine of non-alignment. The reversal of opinion is all the more astonishing as the previous crises had never affected their placidity: neither the annexation of Crimea by Russia in 2014 nor the Donbass conflict for eight years.

“Finlandization”, forced neutrality

A historic reversal for this country of 5.5 million inhabitants, a member of the European Union since 1995 and so far braced on its neutrality negotiated with the USSR in the aftermath of the Second World War. The Finnish swing opens up a disastrous prospect for Russia. Vladimir Putin's regime will see NATO get closer, with 1,340 kilometers of additional common border, twice as much as today.

Ceded by Sweden to Russia in 1809, Finland proclaimed its independence from Moscow on the occasion of the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917. Invaded by the Soviet Union in 1939, the country resisted valiantly during the three-month war of Winter. After the resumption of the conflict in 1941, Finland was forced into an armistice after three years of fighting. At the end of a "friendship" treaty signed in 1948 under pressure from Moscow, the Finnish leaders agreed to remain outside Western military cooperation in a form of forced neutrality, which has remained in history under the name of “Finlandization”.

The country escapes the rank of satellite state of the USSR, but remains under the eye of Moscow with regard to its foreign and military policy.

After the fall of the Soviet Union, Finland joined the European Union (1995) and NATO's Partnership for Peace, but remained officially non-aligned militarily.

Sweden, for its part, maintained for nearly two centuries an official policy of neutrality inherited from the end of the Napoleonic wars, in particular during the two world wars. If it participated in military missions in Afghanistan or more recently in Mali, it does not t has not been at war since an 1814 conflict with Norway. In the 1990s, its neutrality policy was amended to military non-alignment 'aiming to allow' neutrality in the event of war.

While remaining outside NATO, the two countries have forged ever closer ties with the Alliance, which now considers them to be the two closest non-member states. The two countries have thus taken part in missions led by NATO in the Balkans, in Afghanistan and in Iraq, as well as in numerous joint exercises.

Significant resources devoted to the army

During the Cold War, Sweden and Finland devoted significant resources (4 to 5% of their GDP) to their armies, a consequence of their absence of military allies.

With the disappearance of the Soviet threat, both reduced their appropriations, but Finland maintained a massive use of military service and reservists.

With its 5.5 million inhabitants, Finland can thus count on a wartime army of 280,000 combat-capable soldiers, plus 600,000 other reservists, an exceptional force for a European nation. The professional army, however, has only 13,000 soldiers, although it trains 22,000 conscripts each year.

Sweden, for its part, has divested further, reducing its military budget from 2.6% of GDP in 1990 to 1.2% in 2020. But the country began to reverse the trend after the annexation of Crimea by Russia. in 2014. Compulsory military service, abolished in 2010, was partially reintroduced in 2017. Currently, the Swedish army has some 50,000 soldiers, half of whom are reservists. Both countries have announced major military investments since the start of the war in Ukraine.

Disruption of the fragile balance in the Arctic

This region is a potential gold mine – in terms of energy resources and maritime routes – often governed by multiple bilateral agreements between the various states with interests there: Canada, Finland, Denmark, United States, Iceland, Norway , Sweden and Russia. These eight countries generally manage to get along, united by their common Arctic coastline, with agreements on maritime law, environmental balance and security needs.

But there are signs that the Russian invasion of Ukraine is already disrupting these fragile relations. Russia shares the Arctic coastline with five NATO member states, Finland and Sweden – all of which support Ukraine militarily and financially.

“A fifth ocean at the top of the world”

In the Arctic, political and economic concerns are conditioned by the unique climate of this region and its rapid evolution. Over the past 30 years, the thickest ice has lost 95% of its area. At the current rate of evolution of greenhouse gas emissions, there could be no summer ice in place by 2040. The dramatic melting of the ice is changing the political and economic landscape of the region. “We are witnessing the appearance of a fifth ocean at the top of the world,” warns Katarzyna Zysk, professor at the Norwegian Institute for Defense Studies. “And when that ocean is there, it will be used for economic and military purposes. »

The melting ice is also changing the military strategy of Russia – which owns 53% of the Arctic coastline. “It's an incredibly large area. Russia's borders used to be protected by ice, but now it is disappearing, making it more vulnerable to potential attacks,” says Katarzyna Zysk.

This is one of the reasons why Moscow has strengthened its military presence in the Far North in recent years. The Kremlin has created an Arctic Navy (“the Northern Fleet”) based on the Kola Peninsula – close to Finland and Norway. According to Katarzyna Zysk, this is where Russia has its largest share of strategic submarines and other important non-nuclear capabilities.

The current war in Ukraine has raised the stakes even further. If Sweden and Finland join NATO – which they are seriously considering – all the states that share the Arctic, except Russia, will be part of the Atlantic Alliance. This could cause tensions with Russia.

“The concern remains not to annoy the Russian bear further. In our debate on NATO, we must be clear about the need not to host foreign military bases and nuclear missiles,” insists former Finnish Foreign Minister Erkki Tuomioja.

The post-Putin period also worries him: “We must not humiliate Russia as Germany was humiliated after the First World War. »

Russia has already made known that if Sweden and Finland joined NATO, it would deploy nuclear weapons and hypersonic missiles in the Baltic region.


Alize Marion for DayNewsWorld

BEIGED COMMANDER IN MARIOUPOL SEEKS HELP FROM ELON MUSK

A Ukrainian commander among the fighters besieged by Russian forces at the Azovstal factory in Mariupol on Wednesday appealed for help directly to US billionaire Elon Musk to intervene to save them.

“People say you come from another planet to teach people to believe in the impossible. […] In the place where I live, it is almost impossible to survive”, tweeted Sergey Volyna, commander of the 36th Marine Brigade of Mariupol.

“Help us to leave Azovstal for a third country. If not you, who else ?

Give me a lead, ”he continued, indicating that he created an account on Twitter specifically to directly challenge the richest man in the world who is trying to buy the social network for 44 billion dollars.

The serviceman asked "every person on planet Earth" to help ensure that Elon Musk is aware of his appeal.

kyiv said this week that more than a thousand soldiers, many of them injured, were still in the bowels of the steelworks which house a sprawling underground maze dating back to the Soviet era.

It is the only pocket of resistance in the strategic port city of Mariupol, now controlled by the Russians.




Emily Jackson for DayNewsWorld

A MAY 9 SPEECH BY VLADIMIR PUTIN

WITHOUT SURPRISE

In the conflict in Ukraine, the date of May 9 was expected and feared. On the Russian side, it is a day of celebration of the end of the Second World War, with a military parade and a speech by Russian President Vladimir Putin. But for several days, it was feared that the head of the Kremlin would make serious announcements, leading to an escalation of the current war in Ukraine.

The Russian president, however, made a shorter speech than usual, with the usual propaganda justifying Russian intervention in Ukraine, but he did not mention a potential nuclear attack, did not talk about war or extension of the conflict, and even called for avoiding world war.

A “classic” speech with no real surprises

He recalled the fact that Russia had no choice, that the homeland had to be defended, that pro-Russian separatists and Russian troops were fighting on their land..."Despite all international differences, Russia has always been in favor of setting up an indivisible security system. Last December, we offered to sign new agreements offering security guarantees. Russia acted honestly but to no avail. They didn't want to listen to us.

In reality, our partners had very different plans. We see it: they openly prepared a mission in the Donbass, against our historic Crimean lands. In kyiv, the acquisition of nuclear weapons was mentioned. An unacceptable threat was brewing in the immediate vicinity of our borders. The clash with neo-Nazis and Western-backed Banderists was inevitable. We have seen hundreds of military advisers bring advanced NATO weapons to them. »

If the possibility of a nuclear attack has not been raised, Vladimir Putin has shown that he wants to continue this war, evoking "an absolutely unacceptable threat" which "is forming, directly on our borders", and renewing his accusations of Nazism at the against Ukraine.

On February 24, during his speech announcing the invasion of Ukraine, he had however been much more virulent, threatening for example "those who would try to interfere with us" with an "immediate" response from Russia, with " consequences you have never experienced before”. This time, he mainly addressed the Russian people, announcing aid for the families of soldiers killed at the front, and declaring that it was necessary "to do everything so that this global war [in reference with the Second World War, Editor's note] not happen again”.

Observers expecting strong statements, did the Kremlin not want to play on this expectation?

Vladimir Putin likes to blow hot and cold: less offensive on May 9, 2022, he remains no less determined.

“After the collapse of the USSR, the United States claimed exclusivity, humiliating the whole world. “, he continued.




Alize Marion for DayNewsWorld

COMMEMORATION OF THE VICTORY OF MAY 8, 1945

The commemoration of the victory of May 8, 1945 over Nazi Germany was held in Paris, on the eve of the traditional Russian military parade in Moscow, a potential show of force this year, in the context of the invasion of Ukraine by Russia.

The French president, invested the day before for a new mandate, celebrated, Sunday, May 8, in Paris, the 77th anniversary of the victory of May 8, 1945 of the Allies over Nazi Germany, a special ceremony in the context of the war in Ukraine and on the eve of the traditional Russian military parade in Moscow.

This commemoration opens an international sequence for the Head of State, who will participate the same day, from 5 p.m., in a videoconference of the members of the G7 "relating to the situation in Ukraine", before going to Strasbourg on Monday to Europe Day and, in the process, to Berlin to meet Chancellor Olaf Scholz. Mmanuel Macron arrived by car to lay a wreath in front of the statue of General de Gaulle at the bottom of the Avenue des Champs-Elysées in 11:00.

A cornflower in his buttonhole, the Head of State exchanged a few words with the general's grandson, before getting back into his car to reach the Arc de Triomphe, accompanied by the large mixed escort of the Republican Guard, greeted by passers-by. It was the first time since 2019 that the public was allowed to attend this ceremony, after two years of restrictions linked to the Covid-19 epidemic. Place de l'Etoile, Mr. Macron found the Prime Minister, Jean Castex, and the ministers of the armies and veterans, Florence Parly and Geneviève Darrieusecq. He honored the flag, before reviewing the troops. Then he laid a wreath of flowers on the tomb of the Unknown Soldier and rekindled the flame.

Asked about the very particular context of this ceremony, the Minister of Culture, Roselyne Bachelot, told the journalists present that it was a “moment which takes on a very considerable significance” with the war in Ukraine. "We thought the war was gone from Europe," she added.

Read also Article reserved for our subscribers In the midst of war in Ukraine, Emmanuel Macron clings to "European sovereignty"

“Today we commemorate the end of the Second World War in Europe and the victory of the Allied fighters over Nazi Germany.

We do not forget the soldiers from all over the former USSR, including Ukrainians and Russians, who contributed to this victory, ”wrote the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Jean-Yves Le Drian, on Twitter.




Alize Marion for DayNewsWorld

RUSSIA LAUNCHES MILITARY AID PROVIDED

BY WESTERNS TO UKRAINE

Western military aid and intelligence to Ukraine prevents Russia from “quickly” completing its offensive on its neighbor, the Kremlin said on Thursday, nevertheless ensuring that all its objectives will be met .

Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov further assured the press that the corridors

“The United States, the United Kingdom, NATO as a whole constantly share intelligence data with the Ukrainian Armed Forces. Combined with the supply of weapons […], these actions do not allow the operation to be completed quickly, ”Dmitri Peskov told the press, reacting to a publication published on Wednesday in the New York Times.

According to this newspaper, citing anonymous sources within the American services, the information provided by the United States to the Ukrainian army made it possible to target several Russian generals near the front.

These Western actions “are however not able to prevent” that the objectives of the Russian offensive in Ukraine are fulfilled, underlined the spokesman of the Kremlin.

He also assured that the Russian army respected the ceasefire it had announced the day before for Thursday in order to allow the evacuation of civilian refugees at the Azovstal factory site.

"The corridors are working there today," said Mr. Peskov, denying statements from Kyiv that fighting between Russian and Ukrainian forces was underway for control of this steel plant.

"The Ukrainian side and especially (the fighters) who have taken refuge on the site of the factory are known to fabricate a lot of lies", he assured.

According to the Kremlin, no assault is underway in Azovstal, Vladimir Putin having ordered to besiege the site to make the Ukrainian units give in, cut off from the world.

This resistance as well as civilians are concentrated in the vast network of underground galleries of the steelworks which are difficult to storm or destroy by bombardment.




Carl Delsey for DayNewsWorld

DOES THE DELIVERY OF OFFENSIVE WEAPONS TO UKRAINE LEAD TO A RISK OF "COBELLIGERANCE"

 FOR WESTERN PEOPLE ?

Washington brought together Tuesday, April 26, 2022, in Germany, 40 countries to accelerate deliveries of military equipment to Ukraine. The United States says it is ready to "move heaven and earth" to make Ukraine win against Russia. At the risk of falling into co-belligerence ?

On Tuesday, 40 countries allied with Ukraine gathered at the American base in Ramstein, Germany, on Washington's initiative to speed up deliveries of military equipment. Unheard of in Europe. To deal with the Russian invasion launched on February 24, more than twenty countries are helping Ukraine by sending humanitarian aid, but also military equipment, whether defensive (helmets, vests bulletproof) or offensive. Weakening Russia is now a goal. Biden's objective is no longer in doubt: Ukraine must win the war but is it at the risk of co-belligerence ?

Military support was intended to be discreet at the start so as not to be considered as a co-belligerent country against Russia, but also so as not to be dispossessed of the necessary armaments if the conflict is settled. Now, many countries, including France, Germany or the Netherlands, have announced the shipment of heavy weapons such as tanks or howitzers.

According to Mike Jacobson, a civilian artillery specialist, the West wants to allow the Ukrainians to respond to the long-range Russian bombardments, which aim to push back the bulk of the Ukrainian forces and then send tanks and soldiers to occupy the ground. Ukraine also received fighter jets and spare parts to strengthen its air force, Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said before retracting.

Small non-exhaustive inventory

Similar announcements have been cascading in recent days. Without going through a Prévert-style inventory, let us detail some military aid made public - others may remain secret -.

US President Joe Biden thus announced this Thursday new military aid of 800 million dollars, including 72 howitzers and theirvehicles, 144,000 shells and 121 Phoenix Ghost killer drones, bringing aid to Ukraine to more than 4 billion USD since the beginning of his mandate. On April 13, he had already announced aid including armored vehicles, artillery (18 howitzers) and helicopters. Previously Washington had provided or promised 1,400 Stinger anti-aircraft systems, 5,000 Javelin anti-tank missiles, 7,000 anti-tank weapons of another model, several hundred Switchblade kamikaze drones, 7,000 assault rifles, 50 million bullets and various ammunition, rockets laser-guided systems, Puma drones, anti-artillery and anti-drone radars, light armored vehicles and secure communication systems.

Slovakia, which contributed military equipment worth around 62.5 million euros (fuel, ammunition, surface-to-air missiles, anti-tank missiles) and provided an S-300 air defense system, is negotiating currently with Ukraine the possibility of sending Zuzana Howitzer howitzers.

The Netherlands, they promised at the end of February the delivery of 200 Stinger missiles. During the Ramstein meeting, they announced the dispatch of a "limited number" of armored howitzers of the Panzerhaubitze 2000 type to kyiv. They have the ability to eliminate enemy targets 50 kilometers away in all weather conditions. In mid-April, the German Minister of Defence, Christine Lambrecht, announced that the supply capacities for equipment drawn from the Bundeswehr's reserves had reached their limit. The sector will now go directly through manufacturers. The Rheinmetall group, constructor of the Leopard tank among others, informed Handelsblatt that it is preparing to deliver around fifty armored vehicles to the Ukrainian army. According to its leader, Armin Papperger, the first of

If France remains discreet on the type of weapons, it has nevertheless delivered more than 100 million euros of military equipment. "We still deliver substantial equipment, from Milan to Caesar through several types of armaments" , revealed Emmanuel Macron, adding “I think we have to continue on this path. With always a red line, which is not to enter into co-belligerence”.

A shift in Western military aid to Ukraine

According to Elie Tenenbaum, director of the Center for Security Studies at the French Institute of International Relations, we are witnessing a real “turning point in the war” . This is indeed a second phase of delivery of weapons, and this time offensive. The first, just after February 24, concerned so-called “defensive” weapons, that is to say that they are used to counter an enemy attack, even if their effects can be lethal. Since then, we have reached a certain plateau with the requests made by Ukraine for more offensive or versatile means (combat planes for example).

At the risk of falling into co-belligerence ?

A new word has appeared. It is that of “co-belligerent”. Have Western states, Europeans and Americans already, de facto, gone to war alongside Ukraine? The retreat of the United States at the time of sending Polish Mig-29 fighter planes to the conflict zone shows enough the embarrassment of the Western camp. "We don't want an open war between Russia and NATO", repeated Jens Stoltenberg, a secretary general of the Alliance placed between a rock and a hard place: increasingly desperate Ukrainian calls for help , on the one hand, and constant Russian threats, on the other.

Especially since Joe Biden also announced yesterday, Thursday April 27, that he was going to ask the American Congress to grant aid of 33 billion dollars to Ukraine, including 20 billion in military equipment, while specifying that the United States "does not attack" Russia but "helps Ukraine to defend itself against Russian aggression".

The risk of real escalation is indeed always present, the risk of widening the conflict too, with a potential destabilization of Moldova.

Already present this escalation takes place in the war of words. To astonish Western public opinion, Vladimir Putin, from February 27, stirred up nuclear fear. Yesterday Sergei Lavrov explicitly mentions the risk of a Third World War. And on Wednesday April 28, 2022 it was the President of Russia himself who asked the United States to stop sending arms to Ukraine, declaring that Western arms supplies were fueling the conflict. Addressing Russian parliamentarians, Vladimir Putin said the West wanted to cut Russia into pieces, and accused Western countries of pushing Ukraine into conflict with Russia. "If anyone intends to interfere in the current events and create strategic threats against Russia, this will be unacceptable to us. They should know that the strikes we will carry out in retaliation will be meteoric,” Vladimir Putin said, according to a video of his speech broadcast by Russian media.

A direct military involvement against Russia is certainly excluded, but the debate on the extent of arms deliveries to kyiv is raging. But how far can the allies go without being considered as parties to the conflict?

The "balancing of Westerners, neither neutral nor co-belligerent"

A direct military involvement in Ukraine, against Russia, is certainly excluded. The risks of a large-scale conflict, spilling over into the territory of NATO countries, are too serious. It is therefore a question of containing the fighting on Ukrainian soil, without abandoning its population to its fate. Interviewed by BFMTV, Admiral Hervé Bléjean, Director General of the European Union Military Staff, said: “International law and the law of armed conflict do not make countries that supply another country [ for] his self-defense of the belligerents. So the countries of the European Union and the other countries which help in this war effort cannot be characterized as belligerents despite the misinformation and despite the speech that can be made by Vladimir Putin on this subject”.

The "balancing of Westerners, neither neutral nor co-belligerent", according to the expression of journalists from Le Monde, cannot however hide a reality: the growing isolation of Russia and the political instability that Vladimir Putin now represents in the concert of nations are particularly fearful of unpredictable reactions to its interlocutors.

"We don't know what's in Vladimir Putin's head", observed the journalist specializing in Eastern Europe, Bernard Lecomte on BFM: "We have a huge country 11,000 km long which is in the process of having the status of North Korea, it's dizzying."




Joanne Courbet for DayNewsWorld

WHAT DOES THE SINKING OF THE MOSKVA CRUISER MEAN IN THE RUSSIA/UKRAINE CONFLICT ?

Will the sinking of the flagship of the Black Sea Fleet drag all of Russia to the bottom, wonders Cyrille Bret, geopolitician, in TheConversation.

It is tempting to see in the loss of the Russian cruiser Moskva the symbol of a larger shipwreck: that of the invasion of Ukraine by Russia.

First, this event has an operational scope, especially since the Russian Black Sea Fleet cannot be reinforced by the Northern Fleet via the Dardanelles and Bosphorus straits, which Turkey has closed since the beginning of the "special military operation" launched by the Kremlin. But it has, above all, a political significance: the loss of the main Russian ship near the Ukrainian coast seems to illustrate the gradual reversal of the military, media and strategic balance of power between Ukraine and Russia.

On the military level, a relationship of the weak to the strong

Whether the result of a Ukrainian attack (as kyiv claims) or an accidental fire (as Moscow claims), the disappearance of the cruiser Moskva, flagship of the Black Sea Fleet, highlights several aspects essential elements of the ongoing military confrontation.

Admitted to active service in 1983, this ship of more than 12,000 tons, initially baptized Slava (Glory), is a legacy of the USSR, designed in the 1970s by Soviet engineers to wage the second Cold War, that of the he Brezhnev era, at a time when Soviet armed forces were deployed on all continents. Withdrawn from service for a decade, from 1990 to 2000, he contributed to the renewal of the Russian armies enshrined in the major modernization plan launched in 2009 by Vladimir Putin.

Its sinking is the symbol of the limits of this modernization of the armed forces conducted for more than a decade in all dimensions (air, land, sea, cyber) to affirm the power of Russia in the distance (in Syria since 2015) but also close to its borders (Caucasus, Baltic, Black Sea, North Atlantic). In other words, the combination of Soviet military heritage and Putin's modernization of the forces is not enough to achieve a decisive, clear and indisputable military victory.

Since the beginning of the invasion in February, despite the heavy civilian and military losses suffered by Ukraine, despite the destruction of several towns and numerous infrastructures, and despite the supposed superiority of the Russian armed forces, Moscow has not achieved its avowed objectives: to change the Ukrainian government and impose a status of strict neutrality on the country.

For Ukraine, which claims to have sunk the ship as a brilliant action - this episode constitutes a whole symbol of hope on the military level: long criticized, very recently reformed and benefiting until recently only from limited support from the West, the Ukrainian army is thus taking its revenge on the supposed invincibility of the Russian army and on a vessel which has paralyzed its action at sea [...]

Furthermore, the disappearance of the Moskva has a direct effect on the maritime dimension of the Russian invasion. If Mariupol in the east and Odessa in the west are strategic objectives of Russia, it is because the conquest of these cities would constitute for Moscow the strategic completion of the annexation of Crimea. Indeed, it would allow him to remake the Black Sea into the “Russian lake” that it was during the Soviet era and to deprive Ukraine of a coastline. But such a conquest relies largely on the ability of Russian ships to support the assault on land from the sea...

From the sinking of a 40-year-old cruiser to the victory over Russia, there is an important leap, but this episode underlines the obvious: on the military level, Ukraine manages to establish a relationship of weak to strong which deprives Russia of the victory it has been seeking for nearly two months.

In the media space, a conflict of generations

The fate of the Moskva quickly became the stake of a conflict far removed from the Black Sea and naval operations. For several hours, he has embodied the confrontation of stories.

On the one hand, Russia downplays the event as it tries to lessen the impression of its international isolation, downplay the number of its soldiers killed in Ukraine and deny war crime charges.

Moscow's war communication is well-honed by experience: it had already given its measure from the start of the Russian operation in Syria. It is also supported by the mastery of omnipresent "troll factories" on social networks, and relayed by traditional media increasingly controlled by the government in the name of the Sacred Union, the war effort and loyalty to the country.

[...] Entirely structured by the "vertical of power" which, as in the Soviet era, makes the leader appear alone at the summit of power and control, official Russian communication insists that Russia is the subject of a Western media conspiracy that purposely distorts reality, as in the "simple" accidental fire on the Moskva. In short, communication from the 20th century equipped with 21st century technologies… exactly like the Moskva, modernized with equipment from the 2000s.

Ukraine's media strategy breaks with the 20th century. This observation applies in general to President Zelensky's communication and, in particular, to the episode of the loss of the Moskva – a ship which had already been mocked by Ukraine at the start of the war, when the Ukrainian sailors of the Serpent Island, threatened by this immense cruiser and summoned to surrender, had answered him in unkind terms.

Speaking directly to public opinion and political leaders around the world, often in their own language, highlighting individuals, resistance fighters or victims of the Russian invasion, and pointing out all the cracks in the Russian military system, the Ukrainian President and Ukrainian public communication agencies master the grammar of contemporary media.

Renouncing to monopolize the narrative, giving official communication the appearance of almost spontaneous reality TV, current Ukrainian communication is obviously influenced by Zelensky's previous career, but also by the experience acquired since the 2014 crisis. Public agencies and companies are waging viral counterattacks against Russian propaganda through social media. In short, in the media sphere as in Ukrainian cities, the Ukrainian government is waging a guerrilla war that favors movement, dodging and light equipment, such as anti-ship and anti-tank missiles… and self-made videos of the President of Ukraine.

In the conflict between Ukraine and Russia for the conduct of the narrative, the asymmetry of means and the heterogeneity of strategies are striking in the case of the Moskva. On the one hand, stilted state propaganda, based on systematic denial. On the other, a new generation of communicators, reactive and agile.

Unlikely victory, impossible negotiations

The loss of the cruiser Moskva also underlines the state of the political and diplomatic balance of power between a Russia which is struggling to achieve victory and a durably weakened Ukraine. This ship had indeed allowed the Black Sea Fleet of Russia to play its military superiority. Thanks to its firepower, Russia had established a blockade of the Ukrainian coasts, hampering both the economic life of the southern regions of the country and the assertion of Ukrainian sovereignty in its own territorial waters.

Today, the loss of this ship is not a "game changer": it does not consecrate either the defeat of Russia, or the victory of Ukraine. Nor does he rush ceasefire talks, much less prepare peace negotiations. Like many episodes of the war, this event does not suggest a way out.

This is the tragedy of this war: symbolic successes are possible but definitive victories seem excluded. As a result, the hostilities seem set to drag on, at the cost of multiple human lives, particularly among Ukrainian civilians.


Alize Marion for DayNewsWorld

CRIMES IN UKRAINE TRANSLATED

BEFORE THE INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL COURT ?

The university professor, associate professor of public law, skills in international law, anthropology of law, from Aix-Marseille University (AMU), Laurent Sermet answers this question in the online journal TheConversation

The International Criminal Court can only conduct a trial on crimes committed in Ukraine since the beginning of the Russian invasion on February 24, subject to the fulfillment of a certain number of conditions.

The first of these concerns the incriminations in question. The Statute of the Court recognizes four of them: war crimes, crime of genocide (or crime of extermination), crimes against humanity, crime of aggression (political crimes).

The second is based on the collection of evidence: Iryna Venediktova, Prosecutor General of Ukraine, among others, is working on this with the help of the national police force – a remarkable situation on the permanence of justice in times of war.

The third requires that the jurisdiction of the Court be admitted by the parties concerned, knowing that neither Ukraine nor the Russian Federation are Parties to the Statute of the Court. These two States validated the text, by signing it, but they did not wish to be bound by it. In 2016, Russia officially announced that it did not intend to be bound by the Statute. How, under these conditions, would the Court have jurisdiction? This point is central and, regrettably, constrains the Court in the exercise of its jurisdiction.

Is a special tribunal possible?

A recent column signed by former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown and eminent jurists calls, openly referring to the precedent of the Nuremberg tribunal, to create by treaty an ad hoc tribunal from which Russia would be excluded, in order to try Vladimir Putin. However, such a procedure would inevitably be perceived as the establishment of international justice in the hands of the West.

The idea of ​​a special criminal tribunal, outside the nails of the ICC, seems in the state of international relations politically inadequate and legally delicate to implement. However, in 2014, following Russia's annexation of Crimea and Moscow's support for the Donbass separatists, Ukraine made two consecutive declarations to recognize, without being a party to the Statute, the jurisdiction of the Court for crimes committed throughout its territory.

It should be noted that this opening of jurisdiction, exceptional and derogatory, had not received any follow-up for eight years. For Karim Khan, Prosecutor of the Court since June 2021, and for his predecessors, the situation in Ukraine did not seem, to say the least, a priority. His “thunderous” decision to open an investigation, announced on February 28, 2022, is very late. On this basis, however, the Prosecutor will be able to conduct investigations and compel the Court to assess the evidence presented to it on the war crimes committed on the territory of Ukraine.

It is still necessary that the perpetrators of the alleged facts be presented to him because there is no trial in abstentia before the Court. This hypothesis of international judgment is moreover reduced by the fact that Ukraine, as a sovereign State, remains primarily competent to judge crimes committed on its own territory. The current investigations conducted by the Attorney General point in this direction.

Furthermore, Ukraine's declaration of ICC jurisdiction must be interpreted in the light of the terms used by the declaring State. These target the "senior officials" of the Russian Federation (senior officials in English terms) and the leaders of the "terrorist organizations" DNR and LNR. The current recognition of jurisdiction, if it is not renewed, is restrictive and places the Court in front of certain difficulties. This one will take care not to judge only the crimes of the ones and not those of the others in order to avoid a reproach of the partiality. To put it another way, since there is no war without war crimes, the crimes of the Ukrainian troops cannot be washed away by the crimes of the Russian troops.

Can Putin be tried for war crimes?

"He's a butcher" said Joe Biden of him. Could Vladimir Putin be prosecuted for war crimes?

This qualification entails serious breaches of Geneva law (the law of war victims, the first Convention of which dates back to 1864) and of The Hague law (the law of methods and means of combat).

The first international text on prohibited weapons of war, because of the excessive suffering and inevitable deaths they caused, was initiated by... Russia, with the declaration of Saint Petersburg in 1868. With hindsight, the concern of a “more humane” war seems to have been lost in the maze of history and power. On these bases, international humanitarian law assumes that non-combatants, civilians or ex-combatants, sick, wounded or prisoners of war should not be targeted. The principle of proportionality implies resorting to the lesser evil to achieve victory. The precautionary principle requires harming civilians only unintentionally and as collateral damage.

In the relations of war between belligerents, too, the rules of war limit the way of operating. Russia says it is conducting a "special military operation" in Ukraine. According to Moscow, there is no war, and therefore there can be no war crimes. This argument will not withstand examination of the factual situation and of humanitarian law, which has replaced the classic notion of “declared war” with the qualification of “international armed conflict” based on acts of armed hostilities between States. The logic underlying the law of methods and means of combat is commendable but also detestable because it legalizes the unacceptable: the right to kill and the prohibition to distinguish between causes, just or bad. Russian and Ukrainian soldiers are placed equally on the altar of humanitarian justice. They would still have to be either tried in Ukraine (territorial jurisdiction) or transferred by it to the Court (international jurisdiction). Or even judged by a third State, on the basis of its universal jurisdiction and their presence on its territory.

On these bases, the Russian head of state could be prosecuted for war crimes, but indirectly. Not because of his political status, which does not come under any of the admissible exceptions in the Rome Statute, but because it would have to be established that the president is, in the chain of command, the direct cause of the violations of laws and customs of war codified in Article 8 of the Statute of the Court. But how would he be tried in Ukraine or handed over to the Court?

… and for crimes against humanity?

A second field of reflection must be considered: the crimes against humanity committed in Ukraine. These are defined as a generalized and systemic plan to attack the civilian population, here Ukrainian. This hypothesis seems particularly significant to us, even if the evidence must be gathered to validate its existence. Crimes against humanity appear to be the ultimate goal of this war and war crimes as its instrumentum. Vladimir Putin has never hidden it: all you have to do to be convinced of this is to reread his essay on the historical unity of Russians and Ukrainians.

Whatever the historical reality of this analysis, it is essential to establish whether or not it presided over the attack. This situation recalls the hypothesis of the Peloponnesian War where Sparta, the “authoritarian”, had preventively unleashed a war against Athens, the “democratic”, for ideological reasons. It appears that, similarly, Russia is waging an ideological war in Ukraine and that the Russian president behaves as the head of an Empire, not as a head of state respecting the borders, sovereignty and political independence of his neighbour.

Crimes against humanity seem, a priori, to correspond more to the current situation than the crime of genocide, recently invoked by Joe Biden. Indeed, this last crime foresees a will of extermination, which does not seem to be the case for the moment. Be that as it may, for Vladimir Putin and the authors of this systematic plan to be worried, they would have to leave Russia and go to countries which have recognized the jurisdiction of the Court and/or universal jurisdiction. Inside Russian borders, in countries not bound by the Statute of the Court or in countries where universal jurisdiction is not allowed, they fear nothing.

The option of imputing the crime of aggression

A final axis of reflection is essential: the crime of aggression.

It is perfectly suited to the situation to designate the actions of the Russian President, an aggressor under the definition given by Article 8 bis of the Statute. The petty rhetoric that Russia is under attack and acting in self-defense, reversing cause and consequence, will not hold. International law obliges States to settle their disputes peacefully (Article 2 § 4 of the Charter). But the jurisdiction of the Court depends on special conditions which require the prior agreement of Russia or the Security Council (art. 15 bis and 15 ter of the Statute), in addition to the cooperation of its authorities, to hand over the president. These conditions are – at this stage, in any case – not fulfilled.

Beyond the legal analysis, these crimes and their methodology trace both the history of this war and a remarkable Ukrainian resilience due to the immediacy of their investigation.


Andrew Preston for DayNewsWorld

THE RUSSIANS FACING THE WAR IN UKRAINE

BETWEEN SUPPORT, FEAR AND RESIGNATION...

The last few weeks seem to have demonstrated that international sanctions alone will not be enough to force Moscow to end the invasion of Ukraine. So who can stop Vladimir Putin in this war? Specialist Vera Ageeva gives us her analysis in The Conversation.

It is obvious that the Russian people will not be able to do this tomorrow morning. And no outside force will be able to push him to oppose the Kremlin regime en masse in the immediate future. But how the Russians are reacting to Vladimir Putin's assault on Ukraine.

The control of power over society

In twenty-two years in power, Putin has managed to create a resilient repressive system. The vertical of power tightly controls political life and public expression throughout the country, so much so that for years a large majority of Russians have preferred to assert themselves "outside politics" in order not to take any risks. to lose their job, their physical integrity, their freedom or even their life – and, at the same time, not to admit that, in the face of power, they feel helpless and weak.

To this feeling of fear and powerlessness is added an incessantly hammered out propaganda, which unfolds in a media landscape that the authorities have finished cleaning up in recent weeks. This propaganda convinced a good part of the population that the president had no choice but to launch a “special military operation” in Ukraine to save Russia from destruction.

However, the invasion of Ukraine did not arouse in Russia a euphoria comparable to that observed in the spring of 2014 following the annexation of Crimea. Despite polls showing 70% popular support for the "special operation" - but which cannot be taken seriously given the Russian government's total control over the polls - there is a lack of enthusiasm about the war in the Russian population.

The support actions are essentially organized by the administrations and the people who take part in them are, most often, civil servants.

For example, in universities, administrations staged videos of students expressing their support for Putin; in several public primary schools, teachers arranged groups of children to form the letter Z (which became the symbol of the invasion of Ukraine); in St. Petersburg, on the famous Nevsky Prospekt, a brass band of police loudly played patriotic songs to disturb anti-war demonstrators; in some towns, municipal bus drivers have been forced to affix a Z sign to their vehicle.

On March 18, 2022, the Kremlin held a big concert at the Luzhniki stadium, on the occasion of the eighth anniversary of the annexation of Crimea, to show the support of the population for the war in Ukraine: according to official data, nearly 200,000 people attended. Testimonies from attendees later revealed that many were coerced into coming (under threat of being fired) and many were paid.

In reality, all these actions tell us nothing about public opinion in Russia. For the moment, one can only observe the mosaic of different tendencies in Russian society.

fear and denial

The first trend is fear and denial in Russian society. Illustration of the fear caused by the all-out repression unleashed by the government against all those who contest the war: in mid-March, an attempt to realistically survey the population's perception of the war had results uplifting. Of the 31,000 people the agency was able to reach by phone, almost 29,000 hung up as soon as they realized they were going to be questioned about the "special operation" in Ukraine (usually the proportion of people refusing to responding to telephone surveys is three to five times lower).

The denial is largely explained by the success of the propaganda mentioned above. After the closing of the last – already very few – media outlets open to alternative viewpoints to that of the government, most Russians found themselves in an information bubble. State-controlled media spreads extremely one-sided interpretation, hides the real information about the Russian offensive on Ukrainian towns and villages, portrays Ukrainians as a people hostage to a clique of Nazis and claims that it is the army and Ukrainian volunteer battalions who themselves fire missiles at apartment buildings in their country to blame the destruction on the Russians – who, for their part, are said to be extremely careful to spare civilians.

A certain part of Russians, especially those who, having installed VPNs on their computers and smartphones, have access to sources of information inaccessible to their compatriots, know that the reality is different from the image presented on television. But even these rarely have the courage to discuss it with their relatives, friends, colleagues.

Anonymous denunciations, widespread under the USSR, have again become commonplace. Fear of arrest began to destroy horizontal social ties and atomized society, making collective resistance impossible.

Soviet reflexes

The second trend is precisely the emergence of Soviet reflexes in the Russian population. We thought the "homo sovieticus" disappeared with the fall of the USSR, but it seems that his burial was premature.

Beyond the anonymous reports already mentioned, the ideas of nationalizing foreign companies having decided to suspend their activities in Russia, of establishing strict price controls by the State, or even of expropriating property owned by "enemies of the people" who left the national territory after the start of the "special military operation", are often brandished by those who support the war in Ukraine.

More directly, we see that direct references to the USSR are flourishing. Tanks bound for Ukraine display Soviet flags. During the concert that the Kremlin organized on March 18, 2022 in Moscow to show popular support for the president, the main song was "Made in the Soviet Union" (which starts with "Ukraine and Crimea, Belarus and Moldova … It's my country!” before adding “Kazakhstan and the Caucasus, and the Baltic too!” a little further on.

Today's deeply corrupt and kleptocratic Russian system, run by an elite who generally use embezzled funds to afford a luxurious lifestyle, has little to do with any communist ideal. The fact remains that the current leaders of the country, for the most part old enough to have been trained and educated in the USSR, willingly resort to typically Soviet propaganda.

Thus, in September 2021, on the Facebook page of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, to justify the idea that Russia has never attacked another country (a fundamental element of Kremlin propaganda), the partition of Poland by the ermany and the USSR in 1939 was simply presented as a “liberating expedition” of the Red Army – a vision in line with that propagated in the USSR and endorsed on several occasions by Vladimir Putin, who did not did not hesitate to rehabilitate the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact.

The justification for the invasion of Ukraine in 2022, based on the invocation of the need to "denazify" this country, bears a strong resemblance to that of 1968, when Soviet tanks entered Prague to, according to Soviet propaganda, "stop the Nazis who had risen in Germany and threatened Czechoslovakia”. Vladimir Putin was 16 at the time and he must have heard his teachers at school put forward these explanations and tell the glorious story of the freedom rescue operation carried out by Soviet tanks in a brother country.

The letter Z, a symbol of the Russian assault on Ukraine, is displayed in many places around the country, here in Saint Petersburg, on March 25. It is here in the colors of the Saint-Georges ribbon, which has become the emblem of the memory of the Second World War, a way of linking the current operation in Ukraine to the fight against the Third Reich. The accompanying hashtag reads, “We don't let our people down,” with the official goal of the invasion being to save Russian-speakers in Donbass and the rest of Ukraine.

If the use of Soviet slogans by the Russian government appears to be opportunistic or reflex, the continuous promotion of the era of the USSR encourages certain layers of society to show themselves more and more inclined to support a kind of Soviet ideology – which, in turn, could influence Russian policy in the future.

The young against the old

The third trend at work is the widening of the generation gap in Russia.

Many young Russians oppose this war. They are the ones who go out on the streets the most, they are the ones who are most often arrested by the police during demonstrations. Students tell on social media and sometimes to their teachers that the hardest thing for them today is talking to their own parents, who are either indoctrinated by television or paralyzed by fear of repression, and therefore pressure on their children to shut them up.

Modern Russian youth is largely globalized and open to dialogue with other cultures. She lives like Western youth: she listens to the same music, watches the same series, loves the same brands and uses the same formulas (lol, crush, chill, etc.). This trend may contribute to changing Russian society in the future – but not in the immediate future.

And the intelligentsia is in exile

One cannot understand Russian society without mentioning the intelligentsia. The philosopher Nikolai Berdiaaev said that writers and poets are the conscience of the nation and best represent the real Russia. Today, we see that a large majority of the Russian intelligentsia is radically opposed to the war that Putin has unleashed.

This is the case, in particular, of the writer Boris Akunin, the director Andreï Zvyagintsev, the writer Lyudmila Oulitskaïa, the actress Chulpan Khamatova, the writer Dmitri Glukhovsky as well as idols of Russian youth such as singers Oxxxymiron, Monetotchka, Face, Noize MC and the country's most popular blogger Yuri Dud. Most of them have already left Russia.

All take up positive ideas intrinsic to Russian culture: the value of individual freedom sung by Alexander Pushkin, the absurdity of a harmony that would be built on even a single tear of a child, as Fyodor Dostoyevsky expressed it, and the rejection of violence that Leo Tolstoy placed at the heart of his philosophy.

The Russian people have always been slightly out of step with their intelligentsia.

Nevertheless, he still managed to reunite with her. It will still take time for the whole population to become aware of the tragedy that is currently taking place.




Carl Delsey for DayNewsWorld
There are no translations available.

TRIOMPHE DE VIKTOR ORBAN

AUX LEGISLATIVES EN HONGRIE

Le miracle, pour l'opposition, ne s'est pas produit.Cette quatrième victoire d’affilée est la plus éclatante de toutes pour Viktor Orban.Viktor Orbán, le dirigeant nationaliste et populiste hongrois au pouvoir depuis douze ans a remporté largement les élections législatives de dimanche , une majorité de Hongrois lui offrant un quatrième mandat consécutif. Après le dépouillement d'environ 98 % des suffrages exprimés sur les listes nationales, son parti, le Fidesz, recueillait 53,1 % des voix, contre 35 % pour la coalition des six partis de l'opposition, selon le Bureau national électoral (NVI). Viktor Orbán a revendiqué dimanche soir « une victoire exceptionnelle » après la publication de ces résultats partiels.

« Le monde entier a pu voir qu’à Budapest le patriotisme a gagné. C’est notre message à l’Europe : nous ne sommes pas le passé, nous sommes l’avenir ! », a fièrement lancé M. Orban à ses partisans réunis pour célébrer sa victoire devant un centre de conférence de Budapest, au bord du Danube.

« Chers amis, nous avons remporté une victoire exceptionnelle - une victoire si grande qu'on peut sans doute la voir depuis la lune, et en tout cas certainement depuis Bruxelles » , a-t-il lancé, heureux sans doute de pouvoir montrer aux Européens qu'en dépit de ses nombreux différends avec l'Union, son opinion publique continue de le soutenir.

Au prix d'une certaine abnégation politique, les partis d'opposition s'étaient unis et avaient désigné en octobre dernier un candidat unique pour les représenter, au niveau national et dans chaque circonscription du pays. L'homme qui avait été désigné au terme d'un long processus de primaires, Peter Marki -Zay , un maire conservateur de 49 ans, catholique et père de sept enfants, ne s'est pas ménagé durant la campagne pour promettre une Hongrie débarrassée de la corruption et pro- européenne mais ses arguments n'ont pas fait mouche dans une Hongrie qui reste majoritairement ultra-conservatrice.

Eternellement au pouvoir

Peter Marki-Zay a dénoncé dimanche « des conditions injustes et impossibles » visant à permettre à son rival de « rester éternellement au pouvoir ». Il faisait allusion aux médias publics à la solde du gouvernement, lui-même n'ayant eu droit en tout et pour tout qu'à cinq minutes d'antenne à la télévision publique durant la campagne. Il ne croyait pas si bien dire.

Sur la base des résultats partiels, selon Reuters, le Fidesz pourrait rassembler 135 sièges - 133 dans le Parlement sortant- sur les 199 que compte le Parlement, donc conserver son actuelle majorité qualifiée des deux tiers, contre 57 pour l'alliance d'opposition. Peter Marki-Zay lui-même serait largement devancé dans sa propre circonscription par le candidat du Fidesz. Il s'est

Le nouveau parti d'extrême droite Notre Patrie devrait faire son entrée au Parlement, étant crédité de plus de 5 % des voix. L'affluence a été forte puisque le taux de participation a atteint 68,7 % , un score très proche du record de 2018.

Un référendum sur la « protection de l'enfance »

Outre l'élection de leurs députés, les Hongrois étaient appelés à répondre à quatre questions en lien avec la récente loi interdisant d'évoquer auprès des moins de 18 ans "le changement de sexe et l'homosexualité".

Pour renvoyer l'Union européenne à son « libéralisme occidental » qu'il juge décadent et montrer que son opinion publique le soutient, Viktor Orbán a organisé dimanche un référendum sur le thème de la protection de l'enfance, parallèlement aux législatives. Les quatre questions étaient rédigées ainsi :

 « Soutenez-vous la tenue de séances d'orientation sexuelle pour les enfants mineurs dans l'enseignement public sans accord parental ? » ; « Soutenez-vous la promotion des traitements de changement de sexe pour les mineurs ? » ; « Soutenez-vous l'introduction sans restriction de contenus à caractère sexuel dans les médias en direction de mineurs et qui affectent leur développement ? » ; « Soutenez-vous l'affichage de contenu médiatique sensible au genre pour les mineurs ? »

Les résultats devaient être connus dans la soirée. 

Pour être validées, les propositions doivent obtenir la majorité absolue des suffrages exprimés, cumulée à un total de votes valides représentant au moins 50 % des inscrits.




Alize Marion pour DayNewsWorld
There are no translations available.

GUERRE EN UKRAINE BOUTCHA

 UNE BOUCHERIE A CIEL OUVERT

En visite à Boutcha ce lundi, le président ukrainien Volodymyr Zelensky a estimé ce lundi que des « crimes de guerre » qui seront « reconnus comme un génocide » ont été commis dans cette ville au nord-ouest de la capitale ukrainienne

Le retrait de l’armée russe de la région de Kiev révèle une Ukraine dévastée et des scènes de désolation. A Boutcha, notamment, les corps d’une vingtaine d’hommes ont été découverts gisant dans une rue, éparpillés sur plusieurs centaines de mètres. Au total, les corps de 410 civils ont, pour l’instant, été retrouvés dans les territoires de la région de Kiev.

La nouvelle a provoqué l’indignation des Occidentaux et de l’Organisation des Nations unies, les accusations de crimes de guerre envers la Russie se multipliant. Le président ukrainien, Volodymyr Zelensky, a accusé directement les dirigeants russes de « tortures » et de « meurtres ». De son côté, Moscou nie et demande un débat au Conseil de sécurité des Nations unies.

Les Etats-Unis vont tenter d'obtenir la « suspension » de la Russie du Conseil des droits de l'Homme de l'ONU, en réponse notamment « aux images de Boutcha », où ont été retrouvés les cadavres de nombreux civils, a annoncé ce lundi l'ambassadrice américaine aux Nations unies.

L'UE veut aider au recueil de preuves sur les crimes de guerre. « Les auteurs de ces crimes odieux ne doivent pas rester impunis.

 L'UE a mis en place une équipe d'enquête conjointe avec l'Ukraine pour recueillir des preuves et enquêter sur les crimes de guerre et les crimes contre l'humanité », a déclaré la présidente de la Commission européenne après un entretien avec le président ukrainien.




Alize Marion pour DayNewsWorld
There are no translations available.

POUTINE SERAIT-IL MAL INFORME PAR

 SON ETAT-MAJOR ?

Le président russe Vladimir Poutine est mal informé du déroulement de la guerre en Ukraine, et ses relations avec son propre état-major se sont dégradées, a assuré mercredi la Maison-Blanche, sur la foi de renseignements américains déclassifiés.

« Nous avons des informations selon lesquelles Poutine estime que l’armée russe l’a induit en erreur, ce qui a causé une tension persistante entre lui et son état-major », a dit mercredi la directrice de la communication de l’exécutif américain, Kate Bedingfield, lors d’un breffage de routine.

« L’un des talons d’Achille des autocraties est que dans ces systèmes, il n’y a plus personne qui dise la vérité au pouvoir en place, ou qui ait la possibilité de le faire. Et je pense que c’est un phénomène que nous voyons maintenant en Russie », a commenté pour sa part le secrétaire d’État américain Antony Blinken, en voyage en Algérie.

« Nous pensons que Poutine est mal informé […] sur les mauvaises performances de l’armée russe et sur la sévérité de l’impact des sanctions sur l’économie russe parce que ses hauts conseillers ont peur de lui dire la vérité », a encore déclaré Kate Bedingfield, confirmant des informations données plus tôt par un haut responsable américain sous couvert d’anonymat.

« Poutine ne savait même pas que son armée recrutait et perdait des conscrits en Ukraine, ce qui démontre une rupture claire dans le flux d’informations fiables parvenant au président russe », avait indiqué ce responsable.

La Maison-Blanche diffuse ces informations sur fond d’interrogations sur la relation entre le président russe et son ministre de la Défense Sergueï Choïgou.

Ce dernier a fait une apparition publique samedi après deux semaines d’absence, qui avaient donné lieu à toutes sortes de spéculations, y compris sur la santé du ministre.

Une absence médiatique qui avait d’autant plus surpris que Sergueï Choïgou est d’ordinaire un visage familier des écrans de télévision.

Il est par ailleurs considéré comme un proche du président russe,Vladimir Poutine et lui se mettant régulièrement en scène dans des séjours dans la taïga sibérienne, au volant de véhicules tout-terrain, buvant le thé ou cueillant des champignons.




Alyson Braxton pour DayNewsWorld
There are no translations available.

JOE BIDEN SUR VLADIMIR POUTINE

 « POUR L'AMOUR DE DIEU CET HOMME 

NE PEUT PAS RESTER AU POUVOIR »

Joe Biden persiste et signe. Lors d'un long discours ce samedi 26 février 2022 à Varsovie, le président des États-Unis a affirmé que son homologue russe Vladimir Poutine ne devait pas rester au pouvoir après avoir lancé l'invasion en Ukraine.

« Pour l'amour de Dieu, cet homme ne peut pas rester au pouvoir », a-t-il lancé lors de cette prise de parole au château royal de Varsovie.

Quelques minutes plus tard, la Maison Blanche a nuancé ce propos. Un haut responsable de la Maison-Blanche, s’exprimant sous couvert de l’anonymat, a précisé peu après que le président américain n’avait pas appelé à un « changement de régime » à Moscou.

« Ce que le président voulait dire, c’est que Poutine ne peut être autorisé à exercer un pouvoir sur ses voisins ou sur la région. Il ne parlait pas du pouvoir de Poutine en Russie, ni d’un changement de régime », a dit le responsable.

Le peuple russe « pas notre ennemi »

S'adressant directement aux Russes, il a insisté sur le fait que ce n'est pas le peuple russe qu'il considère comme ennemi. « Permettez-moi de dire ceci si vous êtes capable de m'entendre - vous, le peuple russe, n'êtes pas notre ennemi », a-t-il déclaré.

« Je refuse de croire que vous accueillez favorablement le meurtre d'enfants et de grands-parents innocents ou que vous acceptez que des hôpitaux, des écoles, des maternités soient pilonnés par des missiles et des bombes russes. » « Cette guerre n'est pas digne de vous, peuple russe. Poutine peut et doit mettre fin à cette guerre », a encore martelé le président américain.

Mais en même temps, il a estimé que le conflit n'allait pas s'arrêter rapidement.

La bataille « entre la démocratie et l'autocratie » ne sera « pas gagnée en quelques jours ou mois. Nous devons nous armer pour un long combat devant nous », a -t-il prévenu.

Une bataille idéologique... la guerre en Ukraine semble préciser les contours d'une nouvelle guerre froide, opposant les Etats-Unis et leurs alliés démocratiques au tandem sinorusse.


Carl Delsey pour DayNewsWorld
There are no translations available.

L'IMMIGRATION UKRAINIENNE EN FRANCE

Depuis le 24 février et le début de l’invasion russe, les Ukrainiens de France se mobilisent largement. Ils organisent des manifestations, récoltent de l’aide à destination des villes assiégées et des forces de défense territoriale – dans lesquelles certains retournent même s’engager – et accueillent des réfugiés.

Si le grand public a découvert l’immigration ukrainienne dans le contexte de l’invasion russe, sa présence en France, tout comme les activités politiques et humanitaires qu’elle y mène, ne sont pas nouvelles. Elles s’inscrivent dans une histoire de plus d’un siècle, au cours de laquelle les événements de l’année 2014 en Ukraine ont joué un rôle majeur.

Des divisions au sein de l'immigration ukrainienne

L’immigration économique postérieure à 1991 (fin de l'URSS) peut être divisée schématiquement en deux groupes, qui forment les deux dernières fractions de l’immigration ukrainienne en France.

Le premier est composé par les « travailleurs migrants » (zarobitchanny). Ils quittent l’Ukraine pour venir gagner un revenu dans des emplois peu qualifiés, essentiellement le bâtiment pour les hommes et les services à la personne pour les femmes (ménage, garde d’enfants, aide à domicile). Cette immigration est initialement conçue comme temporaire, visant à soutenir financièrement la famille restée en Ukraine, payer les études de ses enfants ou y acheter un bien.

Cependant, il arrive que ces travailleurs migrants prolongent leur séjour et parviennent à faire venir leurs proches, installant la migration sur le long terme. Il est difficile d’estimer l’ampleur de cette immigration, une partie d’entre elle possédant un caractère illégal ou semi-légal. Depuis 2017 notamment, les Ukrainiens peuvent voyager 90 jours dans l’Union européenne sans visa : certains utilisent ces séjours pour travailler au noir, et ne sont pas comptabilisés parmi les détenteurs de permis de séjour.

La seconde fraction de l’immigration ukrainienne contemporaine est composée de cadres et de représentants de professions intermédiaires, recrutés pour exercer un métier dans leur domaine de compétence (recherche scientifique, hautes technologies…), ou – plus fréquemment – arrivés en France pour étudier, avant de trouver un emploi de cadre. Contrairement aux « zarobitchanny », ces étudiants et travailleurs qualifiés sont insérés dans des cercles de sociabilité français, auxquels appartient souvent leur conjoint. Ils maîtrisent parfaitement la langue du pays d’accueil, acquièrent la nationalité française et envisagent rarement un retour en Ukraine.

Les travailleurs migrants entretiennent principalement des liens avec leurs compatriotes, au sein de la famille, à l’église ou dans les associations culturelles (chorale, école pour enfants). Ainsi, ils rejoignent fréquemment les communautés ukrainiennes historiques formées par les vagues précédentes et leurs descendants. Bien qu’il existe des différences importantes entre « zarobitchanny » et Français d’origine ukrainienne, en matière de statut socio-économique par exemple, leur origine géographique commune (Ouest de l’Ukraine) fait qu’ils se retrouvent régulièrement autour de la pratique de la langue ukrainienne, du culte gréco-catholique et des mêmes référentiels historiques.

Français de la diaspora ukrainienne « historique » et Ukrainiens de l’Ouest perçoivent ainsi plus fréquemment l’époque soviétique comme une période d’occupation de l’Ukraine et célèbrent volontiers le mouvement de « libération nationale » mené par l’Organisation des nationalistes ukrainiens (OUN) et l’Armée insurrectionnelle ukrainienne (UPA) pendant la Seconde Guerre mondiale. Porteuses d’un nationalisme intégral, visant à obtenir la création d’un État-nation ukrainien indépendant, ces organisations ont d’abord collaboré avec les Allemands dans la lutte anti-soviétique, avant de les combattre également.

Les migrants qualifiés sont, quant à eux, principalement originaires des grandes villes l’Ouest (Lviv), mais surtout du Centre-Est de l’Ukraine (Kiev, Odessa, Dnipro, Zaporijia, Kharkiv, Donetsk…). En plus de leur insertion dans des cercles de sociabilité français, ils fréquentent volontiers des milieux russophones, constitués d’immigrés de l’espace postsoviétique, sans distinction de nationalité, que ce soit par le travail, les associations ou les activités religieuses (églises orthodoxes russes). Si certains entretenaient des contacts avec les communautés ukrainiennes dans les années 2000, beaucoup ne les fréquentent pas. Ils sont par ailleurs moins familiers du récit nationaliste répandu dans l’Ouest de l’Ukraine et au sein de l’élite nationale-libérale représentée par le président Viktor Iouchtchenko (2005-2010).

Reconfigurations des identités politiques au sein de l’immigration ukrainienne

Ces lignes de division au sein de l’immigration ukrainienne sont reconfigurées au moment de l’Euromaïdan (novembre 2013 – février 2014). Les Français d’origine ukrainienne, sensibilisés par leurs parents à l’anticommunisme et à la méfiance vis-à-vis de la Russie, sont rejoints par les travailleurs migrants, mais aussi par les migrants qualifiés, qui s’étaient jusqu’alors tenus à l’écart des communautés ukrainiennes. Ces différents groupes se retrouvent sur les mêmes lieux de manifestation, autour d’une volonté de rapprochement avec l’Union européenne, et plus encore dans le désir de démocratisation et de retour de l’État de droit, qu’ils jugent bafoué par le président Ianoukovitch.

Plus encore que le Maïdan, ce sont l’annexion de la Crimée par la Russie (mars 2014) et le début de la guerre du Donbass entre séparatistes pro-russes et armée ukrainienne (avril 2014) qui redéfinissent les allégeances au sein de l’immigration ukrainienne, et notamment au sein des migrants russophones du Centre et de l’Est. Une partie d’entre eux, déjà sceptiques envers le Maïdan, se réfugient dans des positions pro-russes, dénonçant la répression conduite par le nouveau pouvoir de Kiev, qu’ils jugent illégitime, à l’encontre des populations civiles du Donbass. Mais la majorité prend clairement position contre le séparatisme et pour la défense de l’intégrité territoriale de l’Ukraine.

De nouvelles associations se constituent actuellement , regroupant les différentes fractions de l’immigration ukrainienne autour de positions pro-ukrainiennes .

La communauté ukrainienne de France plus soudée que jamais

Au rythme des rassemblements et des collectes de dons, la communauté ukrainienne de France a resserré les liens. « Il y a eu un regain patriotique énorme. Ici, la communauté s’est mise en ordre de bataille, tout le monde remplit une fonction : manifester, contrer la propagande en ligne, accueillir les réfugiés, collecter les dons… », énumère Anastasia Loskot, ancienne danseuse du ballet national Virsky, ruban jaune et bleu noué au sac à dos. La mobilisation rassemble les membres d’une diaspora éparse, y compris des russophones de l’est, comme Evgenia Besançon, partie en 1991 en pleine « "ukrainisation" des régions russophones », des Ukrainiens occidentaux.

Quel avenir pour l’immigration ukrainienne en France ?

L’invasion russe actuelle, en plus de renforcer numériquement la communauté ukrainienne avec un exode sans précédent, mènera probablement à son terme le processus, entamé en 2014, de consolidation de l’immigration autour de référentiels nationaux communs.




Britney Delsey pour DayNewsWorld
There are no translations available.

POURQUOI POUTINE EXIGE DES PAIEMENTS EN ROUBLES POUR LE GAZ ?

Les européens réfléchissent à des sanctions plus fortes contre Moscou. Mais, hier, mercredi 23 mars, Vladimir Poutine a surpris tout le monde en demandant que le pétrole et le gaz russes soient payés en roubles de la part des pays « non-amicaux » qui souhaitent acheter son gaz naturel.

Le président russe a par ailleurs déclaré que « le gel des avoirs russes par les pays étrangers a détruit la confiance ». Il a également précisé que les changements n'affecteront que la monnaie de paiement, et que l'approvisionnement en gaz se poursuivra conformément aux contrats.

Cette décision obligerait donc les pays qui souhaitent acheter le gaz russe à acheter également sa monnaie, ce qui pourrait permettre de soutenir son cours, après que le Rouble

a perdu environ la moitié de sa valeur face au Dollar en moins de deux semaines.

Depuis, la monnaie russe a rebondi, un rebond qui a été largement accentué suite aux annonces de Poutine le Rouble ayant donc effacé plus des deux tiers de l’impact baissier de la guerre face à l’Ukraine.

Un coup de bluff et de communication pour certains, une stratégie pour emmener les Européens dans l'impasse pour d'autres.

Des contre-sanctions de la part de la Russie

Cette annonce n’est, en tout cas, pas surprenante selon le spécialiste en énergie Nicolas Mazzucchi . « C’est un peu les contre-sanctions russes auxquelles on s’attendait, puisqu’il faut se rappeler que lorsqu’en 2014, il y avait eu un volet de sanctions contre la Russie, celle-ci avait imposé des contre-sanctions, notamment sur les questions d’importations de produits transformés agricoles européens, donc quelque part, la Russie met en place ses contre-sanctions et tape là où ça fait mal », explique le chercheur à la Fondation pour la recherche stratégique (FRS), groupe de réflexion français.

Le 7 mars dernier, Valdimir Poutine n'avait-il pas déjà tenté de renverser à son avantage les sanctions internationales en annonçant que les entreprises russes seraient autorisées à rembourser en roubles ses créanciers originaires des pays « hostiles » ?

Paiement du gaz russe en Roubles : une demande irréaliste et illégale ?

Liam Peach, économiste pour l'Europe émergente chez Capital Economics, a déclaré dans une note que « cela semble être un effort des autorités russes pour faire pression sur les pays occidentaux en forçant les acheteurs étrangers de gaz russe à utiliser des roubles, avec l'avantage supplémentaire de soutenir la valeur de la monnaie ».

Du point de vue des réactions politiques, le ministre allemand de l'économie, Robert Habeck, a qualifié la demande de M. Poutine de « rupture de contrat » et d'autres acheteurs de gaz russe ont fait écho à cette remarque.« Cela constituerait une violation des règles de paiement incluses dans les contrats actuels », a déclaré une source gouvernementale polonaise de haut niveau, ajoutant que la Pologne n'a pas l'intention de signer de nouveaux contrats avec Gazprom après l'expiration de leur accord actuel à la fin de cette année.

Une demande pour déstabiliser les européens

Poutine fait là un dernier coup de bluff pour obliger les européens à prendre conscience de leurs décisions. Le maître du Kremlin a compris que les européens allaient alourdir les sanctions et qu'on finirait tôt ou tard par mettre un embargo sur le gaz et le pétrole russe. Il agite l'épouvantail du rouble mais il sait qu'il va bientôt perdre sa rente énergétique.

La demande de Poutine de payer le pétrole et le gaz russes en roubles est faite pour déstabiliser les européens. C'est une façon de les humilier.

C'est également un moyen de contourner le « droit extra-territorial américain ». C'est un principe qui autorise la loi américaine à condamner un groupe ou un individu d'un autre pays s'il fait du commerce en dollars avec un pays sous embargo. Et les sanctions financières peuvent être très lourdes. C'est ce qui avait obligé Total et Peugeot à quitter l'Iran, il y a quelques années, puisque tout le commerce international de matières premières est en dollars. Avec des Pétro-roubles, Poutine dit à Washington que la Russie n'est pas l'Iran.

« Anti oligarques »

Plus important, il contrôle ainsi l'argent des géants du gaz et du pétrole russe. Gazprom, Novatek, Rosnef... toutes ces multinationales des matières premières n'aiment pas trop cette guerre qui déstabilise leur business. Avec le paiement en roubles, Vladimir Poutine s'assure que ces grands groupes, qui pourraient se retourner un jour contre lui, ne sont pas en train de constituer un trésor en dollars. Sur Twitter, Antoine Levy, professeur au MIT Economics, tempère les effets de cette annonce : « Beaucoup d’émotion à tort sur cette règle, comme s’il s’agissait d’un coup de génie de Poutine qui mettrait les Européens dans une impasse. C’est complètement absurde. » Il explique que les Européens vont utiliser leurs dollars pour acheter des roubles qui serviront à acheter du gaz à Gazprom, et que Moscou veut surtout « s’assurer que les entreprises russes comme Gazprom ne trichent pas en gardant des dollars pour elles.

C’est une règle anti- oligarques bien plus qu’une règle anti-européenne. »




Joanne Courbet pour DayNewsWorld
There are no translations available.

EXPLIQUER LES MISSILES HYPERSONIQUES RUSSES

 EN UKRAINE

«Invincibles », « hypersoniques » ou « invisibles » : la Russie ne manque pas de superlatifs pour qualifier les armes qu'elle utilise dans le cadre de son invasion de l'Ukraine . Moscou a déclaré avoir déployé à deux reprises ce week-end son tout nouveau missile hypersonique Kinjal sur le territoire ukrainien.

La Russie a affirmé ce dimanche 20 mars, pour le deuxième jour consécutif, avoir utilisé des missiles hypersoniques en Ukraine, cette fois pour détruire une réserve de carburant de l'armée ukrainienne dans le Sud du pays. « Une importante réserve de carburant a été détruite par des missiles de croisière +Kalibr+ tirés depuis la mer Caspienne, ainsi que par des missiles balistiques hypersoniques tirés par le système aéronautique +Kinjal+ depuis l'espace aérien de la Crimée », a déclaré le ministère de la Défense dans un communiqué. .

Ce type de missiles est potentiellement indétectables et beaucoup plus rapide que les missiles de croisière classiques, capable de voler à plus de cinq fois la vitesse du son (Mach 5, soit plus de 6000 km/h), défie tous les système de défense anti-aérienne, selon Moscou.

Il existe deux catégories de système hypersonique. Il y a d'abord les HCM, des missiles de croisière capables de voler bien plus vite que la version classique. Il y a ensuite les HGV, planeurs largués en orbite basse par missile balistique. Ils sont capables de surfer sur les hautes couches de l'atmosphère, à plusieurs dizaines de kilomètres d'altitude, de changer de cap et d'effectuer des manoeuvres d'évitement. Ils sont donc moins susceptibles d'être détectées qu'un missile intercontinental, dont la trajectoire en cloche, parfois au-delà du millier de kilomètres d'altitude, est plus prévisible.

Trois décennies après la chute de l'URSS, les grandes puissances entament une nouvelle course aux armements, à l'aune des technologies hypersoniques. Dans cette course, forte de l'héritage soviétique, la Russie compte une légère longueur d'avance. Elle a annoncé le 4 octobre le succès de deux tirs d'essai, depuis un sous-marin, de missiles de croisière hypersoniques (HCM) Zircon. Son président, Vladimir Poutine, se vante de détenir « l'arme absolue » pour percer les boucliers antimissiles américains et européens avec son HGV, le planeur Avanguard, mis en service fin 2019, et susceptible de faire Moscou-New York en moins d'un quart d'heure, grâce à une vitesse de pointe à plus 33 000 km/h (Mach 27).

Les missiles « Kinjal » et ceux de croisière « Zircon », tirés depuis des navires de surface et des sous-marins, appartiennent à une famille de nouvelles armes développées par la Russie et que Vladimir Poutine qualifie « d'invincibles ». Le joyau de l'armée est le planeur hypersonique Avangard, pouvant emporter une charge nucléaire. Il vole jusqu'à 33.000 km/h et change de façon imprévisible de cap ou d'altitude, le rendant quasiment impossible à intercepter.

L' intérêt d'un point de vue militaire

Selon Benjamin Hautecouverture, maître de recherches à la Fondation pour la recherche stratégique cela permet tout d'abord « aux Russes d'envoyer le missile d'une distance qui est très lointaine et puis ça leur permet, si le missile est effectivement plus précis, de toucher une cible qu'ils n'auraient pas pu toucher avec d'autres systèmes plus conventionnels. » Ce vendredi en Ukraine, c'est donc un entrepôt souterrain qui a été visé par le missile hypersonique Kinjal, « poignard » en russe. « De telles infrastructures sont difficiles à détruire avec des missiles classiques » précise Vassili Kachine, analyste militaire et directeur d'un centre de recherche de la Haute école d'économie de Moscou. « Le missile hypersonique a lui une capacité de pénétration et une puissance destructrice plus importantes du fait de sa très haute vitesse », note-t-il.

Mais ce n'est pas tout. Benjamin Hautecouverture insiste sur le fait que "leur vitesse est telle qu'ils échappent aux défenses aérienne et en plus, parce qu'ils sont capables d'effectuer des manœuvres en vol, ils sont à peu près inatteignables par les défenses anti-missiles (...) On ne les voit pas venir."

Les messages envoyés par la Russie

Tout d'abord, il s'agit selon Benjamin Hautecouverture, d'une « illustration de la modernisation de l'outil militaire conventionnel russe, qui est capable justement de frapper dans la profondeur. » C'est d'ailleurs l'occasion de tester ces missiles Kinjal, rentré dans l'arsenal en décembre 2017.

D'après le maître de recherches à la Fondation pour la recherche stratégique, « c'est un déploiement qui peut être aussi analysé comme un signalement russe politico-stratégique, cette fois à destination de l'OTAN, qui consisterait à chercher à dissuader l'Alliance atlantique de se comporter d'une manière ou d'une autre. » Le moment choisi n'est pas anodin analyse Benjamin Hautecouverture, dans une période « où sont envisagées des augmentations de fourniture d'armements à l'Ukraine." « Donc, on est à la fois dans une utilité tactique évidente (...) mais on est aussi dans une utilité politico-stratégique. » De plus l'impact psychologique est certain.

Le développement des missiles hypersoniques

La Russie est le premier pays au monde à avoir développé des armements hypersoniques. Ceux-ci font la fierté du président russe, qui vante régulièrement leur existence comme la preuve d'une supériorité militaire de son pays. Leur mise en service a conduit d'autres pays à accélérer leurs programmes hypersoniques, entraînant une course aux armements dans ce domaine.

La Corée du Nord a ainsi dit en développer et en avoir testé, tout comme la Chine. Le pays de Xi Jinping a d'ailleurs pris de court les Occidentaux avec l'essai d'un planeur hypersonique, capable de se déplacer à plus de 6.000 km/h, qui a fait le tour de la Terre en orbite avant de descendre vers sa cible.

« C'est une technologie qui également est en train de s'imposer aux Etats-Unis » précise Benjamin Hautecouverture. Cependant, « le problème américain, c'est que leurs nouvelles armes ont jusqu'à présent échoué constamment aux tests, donc, de ce point de vue là, ils sont plutôt en retard par rapport aux Russes et par rapport aux Chinois. »

« Nous ne savons pas nous défendre contre cette technologie et la Chine et la Russie ne le savent pas non plus », a prévenu Robert Wood.




Alize Marion pour DayNewsWorld
There are no translations available.

MOSCOU ET KIEV VERS UN STATUT DE NEUTRALITE POUR L'UKRAINE ?

Kiev et Moscou ont évoqué mercredi certaines pistes susceptibles de déboucher sur un compromis sur le statut de l'Ukraine, esquissant l'espoir d'une possible sortie de crise après trois semaines de guerre. Volodimir Zelensky, a déclaré que les négociations entre les deux camps devenaient plus « réalistes » et le ministre russe des Affaires étrangères, Sergueï Lavrov, a affirmé que certaines formulations en discussion pouvaient faire l'objet d'un accord. Moscou et Kiev discutent d'un statut pour l'Ukraine similaire à celui de l'Autriche ou la Suède, deux pays membres de l'Union européenne qui n'appartiennent pas à l'Alliance atlantique. Vladimir Poutine, déclenchement de a dit que Moscou était prêt à discuter d'un statut neutre pour son voisin.

« Un statut de neutralité est désormais sérieusement discuté parallèlement, bien sûr, à des garanties de sécurité », a déclaré Sergueï Lavrov. « Il y a des formulations absolument précises qui de mon point de vue sont proches de faire l'objet d'un accord. » Le principal négociateur russe, Vladimir Medinski, a précisé à la télévision publique: « L'Ukraine propose une version autrichienne ou suédoise d'un Etat démilitarisé neutre mais en même temps un État disposant de sa propre armée et de sa propre marine. »

Dans un signe apparent d'ouverture, Volodimir Zelensky a déclaré mardi que l'Ukraine était prête à accepter des garanties en termes de sécurité de la part des pays occidentaux, quitte à renoncer à son objectif de long terme d'une adhésion à l'Otan.

Le chef du Kremlin a toutefois ajouté que la Russie atteindrait ses objectifs en Ukraine et que l'Occident échouerait dans ce qu'il a qualifié de tentative de domination mondiale et de démembrement de son pays. L'assaut russe, que Moscou présente comme une « opération spéciale », se déroule comme prévu, a-t-il assuré lors d'une intervention devant ses ministres retransmise à la télévision d'Etat.

Le chef de la délégation ukrainienne aux pourparlers, Mykhaïlo Podolyak, a déclaré que Kiev réclamait toujours un cessez-le-feu et le retrait des troupes russes et souhaité des négociations directes entre Volodimir Zelensky et Vladimir Poutine.




Alize Marion pour DayNewsWorld
There are no translations available.

GUERRE EN UKRAINE LIVRAISONS D'EQUIPEMENTS MILITAIRES

LUnion européenne a décidé de débloquer 500 millions d’euros pour la livraison d’équipements militaires aux Ukrainiens. L’Union européenne (UE) s’est surpassée en réactivité et surtout les États ont réussi à se mettre d’accord, en un temps record, pour fournir des équipements militaires, en grande partie létaux, avec la Facilité européenne pour la paix.

Dès le 24 février le conseiller militaire de la délégation de l’UE à Kiev, en contact avec l’état-major général ukrainien, a fourni une liste de leurs besoins prioritaires. De façon précise : des équipements individuels, des gilets pare-balles, du matériel médical…

Mais aussi des armes et surtout des équipements de défense antiaérienne. 80 % de leur aviation a été détruite en quelques heures. Tous les jours, la liste officielle des besoins est actualisée et une réunion avec les experts militaires des 27 États membres est tenue. Les ÉtatsUnis, le Canada, le Royaume-Uni, l’Australie et la Nouvelle-Zélande participent également à cette réunion.

« Envoyez-nous des avions ! »

La Pologne est prête à transmettre à l’Ukraine ses chasseurs Mig-29 réclamés avec insistance par Kiev, mais demande que la décision soit prise par l’Otan, alors que Moscou dénonce un « scénario potentiellement dangereux ». « La Pologne n’est pas partie prenante dans cette guerre et l’Otan non plus. Une décision aussi sérieuse que le transfert des avions doit être prise de façon unanime par l’ensemble de l’Otan », a réaffirmé hier le Premier ministre polonais Mateusz Morawiecki.

Selon le quotidien « Gazeta Wyborcza », la grande question « n’est pas de savoir si l’Ukraine recevra les Mig-29 polonais, mais comment les livrer aux autorités de Kiev » sans provoquer une réaction de Moscou.

Hier soir, Washington a rejeté cette proposition. « Les services de renseignement estiment que le transfert d’avions à l’Ukraine pourrait être perçu comme une surenchère et pourrait entraîner une réaction russe importante, qui augmenterait la perspective d’une escalade militaire avec l’Otan », a déclaré le porte-parole du Pentagone, John Kirby.

Un hôpital pédiatrique bombardé, 17 blessés

17 adultes ont été blessés hier dans le bombardement par l’armée russe d’un hôpital pédiatrique à Marioupol, port du sud-est de l’Ukraine, a annoncé un responsable régional, Pavlo Kirilenko. « Il y a 17 blessés confirmés parmi le personnel », a-t-il indiqué à la télévision ukrainienne, précisant qu’ « il n’y avait aucun enfant » parmi les blessés et « aucun mort », selon un premier bilan. Au moins 19 attaques ont été perpétrées contre des établissements de soins, du personnel de santé et des ambulances, faisant au moins dix morts, depuis le début de l’invasion russe en Ukraine le 24 février, selon des données de l’Organisation mondiale de la Santé (OMS).

Quelque 300 000 civils sont coincés depuis des jours par les combats dans le port stratégique de Marioupol.




Alize Marion pour DayNewsWorld
There are no translations available.

DES POURPARLERS ENTRE LA RUSSIE ET L'UKRAINE PAR LA MEDIATION D'ISRAEL ?

A l’issue d’une troisième séance de pourparlers avec l’Ukraine, la Russie a annoncé des cessez-le-feu dans certaines villes pour permettre l’évacuation de civils. Toute la journée, les combats se sont poursuivis. L’étau se resserre sur la capitale, Kiev. L’Union européenne a lancé l’examen des demandes d’adhésion de l’Ukraine, de la Géorgie et de la Moldavie. Retrouvez l’actualité de ce lundi 7 mars sur la guerre en Ukraine.

L’armée russe poursuit son offensive en Ukraine. Les forces militaires russes continuent de bombarder l’Ukraine, touchant notamment la deuxième ville du pays, Kharkiv. Ce lundi 7 mars, l’armée de Vladimir Poutine a concentré aussi ses efforts sur Tcherniguiv (nord), Soumy (nord-est) et Mykolaïev (sud). Elle « accumule ses ressources pour lancer un assaut » sur Kiev, selon l’état-major ukrainien.

La Russie accepte des cessez-le-feu locaux. Une troisième séance de pourparlers s’est déroulée ce lundi en fin de journée entre les délégations russe et ukrainienne. Moscou a consenti des cessez-le-feu locaux pour permettre dès mardi matin l’évacuation de civils.

Les pourparlers de cessez-le-feu entre la Russie et l'Ukraine sont actuellement à une phase critique, ont déclaré mardi des responsables israéliens, selon le site d'information Axios.

Selon cette source, il y aurait eu un assouplissement des positions des deux côtés au cours des dernières 24 heures lors de la médiation israélienne, les Russes affirmant vouloir démilitariser seulement la région du Donbass et Volodymyr Zelensky révélant à ABC News ne plus insister sur une adhésion de l'Ukraine à l'Otan.

Les responsables israéliens ont par ailleurs dit espérer davantage de progrès vers une solution diplomatique. Ces révélations interviennent tandis que le Premier ministre israélien Naftali Bennett s'est à nouveau entretenu mardi par téléphone avec le président russe Vladimir Poutine au sujet du conflit en Ukraine.

Selon un communiqué du Kremlin, M. Poutine a informé M. Bennett des propos tenus lundi lors du troisième cycle de pourparlers entre responsables russes et ukrainiens au Bélarus.

Il s'agit du second appel téléphonique entre les deux leaders depuis le déplacement de M. Bennett à Moscou samedi pour une réunion de trois heures avec M. Poutine, dans l'espoir de trouver un moyen de mettre fin à l'effusion de sang en Ukraine.

Peu avant cette deuxième conversation, le président ukrainien Volodymyr Zelensky a également indiqué mardi s'être entretenu avec le Premier ministre israélien le remerciant pour ses efforts de médiation entre Moscou et Kiev.

Les deux responsables israéliens ont affirmé que M. Bennett ne présentait à Vladimir Poutine et Volodymyr Zelensky aucun plan de trêve et ne faisait que transmettre des messages entre les dirigeants.

La Turquie va accueillir jeudi les ministres russe et ukrainien des affaires étrangères pour leur premier face-à-face depuis le début de l’offensive russe en Ukraine. Serguei Lavrov et Dmytro Kuleba seront reçus par le ministre turc Mevlut Cavusoglu à Antalya (sud), station balnéaire prisée des touristes russes.




Alyson Braxton pour DayNewsWorld
There are no translations available.

QUID DES LOURDES SANCTIONS ECONOMIQUES ET FINANCIERES POUR ETOUFFER L'ECONOMIE RUSSE

Réunis mardi 1 mars 2022, les membres du G7 Finance ont réitéré leur volonté de mettre en place des sanctions « efficaces, rapides et massives pour porter un préjudice important à l’économie russe », commentait-on à Bercy. Plus tôt dans la matinée, le ministre des Finances, Bruno Le Maire avait été encore plus véhément.

« Nous voulons viser le cœur du système russe, nous visons Vladimir Poutine, nous visons les oligarques, mais nous visons aussi toute l’économie russe, et le peuple russe en paiera aussi les conséquences », avait-il asséné. Le capitaine de Bercy se félicite que les sanctions déjà prises soient « efficaces, et même d’une efficacité redoutable ». Mardi, l’Europe travaillait sur un quatrième train de sanctions. Le premier date du 23 février 2022, c’est dire le zèle déployé par les puissances occidentales pour assommer le pays des tsars.

Mercredi 2 mars 2022 après-midi, l’Europe a évalué, lors d’une nouvelle réunion extraordinaire de l’Ecofin, les premiers impacts de cette bataille économique rangée.

Reste la question de l'embargo sur le gaz, le pétrole et le charbon russes, une mesure qui pourrait se révéler plus efficace, selon Carole Grimaud Potter. « C'est une arme réelle mais à double tranchant et qui se paierait très chère », nuance-t-elle.

Les États-Unis « discutent très activement » de la possibilité d'interdire ces importations.Et viennent le 6mars annoncer l'arrêt des importations. Mais le sujet divise: l'Allemagne, qui importe 55% de son gaz et 42% de son pétrole de Russie, s'y est opposée.

Les importations d'énergie fossile en provenance de Russie sont « essentielles » pour la « vie quotidienne des citoyens » en Europe et l'approvisionnement du continent ne peut pas être assuré autrement à ce stade, a d'ailleurs affirmé ce lundi 7 mars 2022 le chancelier allemand Olaf Scholz.

Trois vagues successives de sanctions

« Les sanctions qui ont été adoptées par trois vagues successives ces dix derniers jours [contre la Russie] sont d'une ampleur et d'une nature inédite », déclare mardi 1er mars dans l'après-midi Olivier Dorgans, avocat spécialiste des sanctions économiques.

Ces sanctions, « c'est du jamais vu à l'encontre d'une puissance économique comme la Russie », assure Olivier Dorgans, qui rappelle qu' « on a eu des sanctions aussi fortes, voire par certains aspects plus fortes, par exemple contre la Corée du Nord ou l'Iran, mais jamais à l'encontre d'un pays qui a la puissance économique de la Russie ». L’Occident vise l’asymétrie, autrement dit, il espère être moins touché que la partie adverse.

Etouffer économiquement la Russie

Interrogé sur la force de ces sanctions, Olivier Dorgans cite celles qui touchent la Banque centrale de Russie. Il estime que ce sont les plus fortes du « package ». « La Banque centrale de Russie avait capitalisé et préparé ces sanctions en mobilisant et en stockant un certain nombre de réserves de devises et d'or, et ce que viennent de faire les Européens, c'est d'empêcher la Banque centrale de Russie d'utiliser ses réserves à l'international, sur les marchés occidentaux ».

En empêchant la pourtant riche Banque centrale russe (640 milliards de dollars de réserves de change) de défendre sa monnaie, l’Europe, les Etats-Unis, rejoints par le Japon et la Suisse, ont mis un pied dans la porte de la forteresse moscovite. La Banque de Russie ne peut plus utiliser ses avoirs en devises – soit environ 200 milliards de dollars via des swaps de change, et 120 milliards de dépôts dans les banques européennes, hors Suisse et Monaco – pour acheter des roubles afin de soutenir le taux de change. Le dollar approche des 120 roubles, soit 60 % de plus qu’avant l’invasion – ce qui annonce une forte inflation. En revanche, la flambée des taux d’intérêt pourrait rapidement étouffer l’activité du pays…

Au cœur des discussions qui se poursuivent à Bruxelles, la définition exacte du périmètre des banques russes bientôt exclues du réseau de messagerie Swift, support des échanges internationaux. C’est une autre décision majeure qui vise à mettre l’économie genoux. Cette procédure, complètement inédite à cette échelle – la Russie est le deuxième pays le plus représenté sur Swift – va perturber les circuits financiers du monde entier. Imaginer d’éventuels concurrents asiatiques faire main basse sur les actifs industriels russes complètement dépréciés par l’effondrement du rouble crispe les industriels occidentaux présents sur place.

 Le système alternatif mis en place par la Russie avec quelques grandes banques en Chine et une poignée d’autres pays d’Asie ne devrait que très partiellement compenser la mise à l’index du réseau mondial, espère-t-on .« Si le conflit s’aggrave ou s’enlise, la pression pour ne pas collaborer va devenir de plus en plus forte, souligne un observateur. On ne peut pas non plus exclure que Poutine nationalise toutes les entreprises présentes sur son territoire.

La même unanimité règne concernant, notamment, le gel des avoirs des oligarques, des proches du Kremlin, et du pouvoir russe lui-même.« le gel des avoirs ne permet pas de disposer des biens, il permet de venir saisir des bateaux, des propriétés immobilières, mais ces actifs, l'Etat français ou les pays membres de l'UE ne peuvent pas les vendre : c'est davantage quelque chose qui va venir nuire à la capacité de ces oligarques de venir profiter de leur vie » , explique l'avocat . L'objectif final, conclut Oliver Dorgans, c'est que, par leur mécontentement, ces oligarques viennent faire pression sur Vladimir Poutine.

Moscou semble subir de plein fouet les sanctions prises à son encontre. La Bourse de Moscou est ainsi restée fermée mercredi 2 mars pour le troisième jour d'affilée, alors que les autorités multiplient les mesures pour limiter l'impact dévastateur des sanctions sur l'économie russe.

Derrière cette stratégie, le but des Occidentaux est d'empêcher la Russie d'amortir le choc des sanctions en rachetant du rouble via ses devises étrangères. Condamnant ainsi le pays à une explosion de l'inflation. Et pour enfoncer le clou, Américains et Européens ont interdit à ses banques de se recapitaliser sur leurs marchés. « Le système financier russe est attaqué de toutes parts. L'asphyxie se met en place », observe Stephen Le Vesconte, associé à Linklaters et spécialiste des infrastructures. Pour l'instant, seul un filet d'air a été préservé pour Gazprombank, troisième banque russe, qui sert exclusivement aux transferts financiers liés aux hydrocarbures. Elle sera visée si l'escalade continue.

Industrie asphyxiée

L'arsenal occidental a également pour ambition de terrasser « l'industrie critique » . Les secteurs de l'aviation, de l'énergie et du raffinage sont particulièrement ciblés. Gazprom ne peut par exemple plus lever d'argent sur les marchés internationaux. Les exportations de technologies fondamentales (semi-conducteurs, lasers, électronique…) et de biens à double usage (civil et militaire) sont aussi strictement contrôlées. « Là est le nerf de la guerre, juge Arnaud Kalika, responsable du séminaire sur la Russie au Conservatoire national des arts et métiers et ancien de la Direction du renseignement militaire. Malgré les stocks dont elles disposent, si les entreprises russes sont privées des logiciels ou composants adéquats, elles vont terriblement souffrir. » Si l'escalade se poursuit, le secteur énergétique, première chaîne de dépendance européenne à la Russie, deviendra la prochaine cible. Le gouvernement français fait ainsi pression sur TotalEnergies pour qu'il coupe les liens, comme l'ont fait ses concurrents BP et Shel.

Comme souvent, le premier signal est venu des marchés financiers, avec une chute du rouble de 30 % le 28 février. La filiale européenne de Sberbank a également fait faillite après le retrait en masse des dépôts par ses clients. « Le meilleur moyen pour faire bouger Poutine est que la population russe perde confiance en lui, ce qui sera inévitablement le cas si l'inflation est forte », fait-on valoir au Quai d'Orsay. Pour parer à ce scénario, la banque centrale russe a annoncé relever très fortement son taux directeur de 10,5 points, à 20 %. Alors que les Russes ont commencé à retirer leur épargne des banques, Moscou a interdit à ses résidents de transférer des devises à l'étranger. Les exportateurs locaux sont aussi contraints de convertir en roubles 80 % des revenus engrangés en monnaie étrangère.

Certes une très forte récession est à prévoir en Russie. Mais les Russes prendront des mesures pour atténuer cette récession, par exemple en augmentant les dépenses budgétaires, en créant de la monnaie, comme on l’a fait pendant la pandémie.

Le financement de l'effort de guerre toujours possible

 Si les Occidentaux arrivent à se passer du pétrole et du gaz russe- ces jours-ci, il est question de mettre en place un embargo- le financement extérieur de la Russie pourrait être menacé. Les impôts étant relativement faibles, une part très importante des revenus du gouvernement russe provient de la rente pétrolière. Si la Russie venait à être coupée de cette source de devises, elle sera très pénalisée .Mais cela ne compromettra pas le financement de l’effort de guerre . L’histoire a montré en effet que dans des économies de guerre, on peut rediriger la production civile vers la production militaire.Les Russes ont beaucoup de ressources naturelles, et ils peuvent entrer dans une logique d’économie de guerre qui leur donnerait de quoi financer les équipements dont ils ont besoin. Et la Russie produit déjà elle-même la quasi-totalité de ses armes.

Des accords notamment avec la Chine

Marc Touati, économiste et président du cabinet Aux commandes de l’économie et de la finance, résume l’issue de secours russe en un pays : la Chine. « Aussi forte soit les sanctions européennes et américaines, la Russie pourra toujours se reporter sur la Chine, pour faire du commerce direct ou pour y transférer ses produits et les vendre à l’international après », plaide l’économiste.

Dans le bal des condamnations et des critiques du monde sur l’invasion russe, Pékin a brillé par son silence. Preuve supplémentaire s’il le fallait de la neutralité – voire du soutien tacite à la Russie - de la Chine dans ce conflit. «La Chine a toujours respecté la souveraineté et l'intégrité territoriale de tous les pays», a déclaré Wang Yi ce 24 février 2022, selon un compte-rendu de l'entretien téléphonique diffusé par son ministère.

«En même temps, nous avons aussi constaté que la question ukrainienne relevait d'une histoire particulière et compliquée. Nous comprenons les préoccupations raisonnables de la Russie en matière de sécurité», a-t-il dit. Et avec plus de 4.000 kilomètres de frontière entre les deux pays, il y a de quoi réaliser des exportations facilement, « ce qui rendrait caduques les effets d’un blocus de l’Occident », note Mac Touati.

Les Chinois, eux, ont  une pensée stratégique. Les Chinois sont susceptibles de fournir des technologies de substitution aux Russes, mais pas dans tous les domaines. Concernant la monnaie, les Chinois ont développé l’usage international du yuan depuis 10 ans. La banque centrale russe a toujours accès aux réserves constituées dans la monnaie chinoise. Ils peuvent donc les utiliser pour acheter en Chine, ou pour convertir ces yuans en toute autre devise de façon plus ou moins opaque pour détourner les sanctions occidentales. S’il n’y a pas de sanctions chinoises contre la Russie, on peut anticiper une augmentation des flux...

La Russie mieux armée que l'Europe ?

La Russie est peut-être même plus armée et prête que l’Occident pour une guerre économique. La dette publique du pays ne dépasse pas les 20 % de son PIB, contre 120 % pour la France et 98,3 % pour la zone Euro. Autre élément en faveur de Moscou, sa population. Sylvie Matelly résume simplement : « Si le prix de l’essence augmente en France, le pays sera dans la rue. Ce ne sera probablement pas le cas en Russie. ». Dernier point sur la solidité des reins de l’économie russe, sa quasi-indépendance : « En termes d’énergie, le pays a ce qu’il faut. Pour les produits manufacturés que lui fournit d’habitude l’Occident, il peut demander à la Chine ».

« L'économie russe subit un sérieux coup dur » , a admis le porte-parole du Kremlin Dmitri Peskov, tout en affirmant qu'il y a « un degré de résistance, du potentiel, des plans, un travail énergique en cours ». « Nous resterons debout », a-t-il ajouté.




Garett Skyport pour DayNewsWorld
There are no translations available.

COMMENT ARRETER LE PRESIDENT POUTINE ?

Au douzième jour de l'invasion russe, les combats se poursuivent en Ukraine: l'armée russe a bombardé Kharkiv - la deuxième ville du pays -, poursuit son siège du port stratégique de Marioupol et resserre son étau sur la capitale Kiev. Dans ce contexte, y a-t-il encore une chance pour que Vladimir Poutine cesse la guerre?

Vers un durcissement des sanctions

Bien que d'une ampleur inégalée, les conséquentes sanctions économiques ont peu de chance de faire émerger la paix, estime Samantha de Bendern, ancienne officier politique de l'Otan et chercheuse au département Russie-Eurasie à la Royal Institute of International Affairs, un institut de réflexion basé à Londres. Par le passé, cette stratégie a en effet rarement porté ses fruits, que ce soit en Iran, en Libye ou à Cuba.

Suspension de la mise en service du gazoduc Nord Stream 2, fermeture de l'espace aérien européen aux compagnies aériennes russes, exclusion de certaines banques du réseau financier Swift... Ce train de sanctions qui commence à asphyxier la Russie engendrerait également un sentiment d' incompréhension, voire de colère chez certains Russes pourtant pro-occidentaux, nourrissant ainsi une certaine amertume et légitimant le discours belliqueux de Vladimir Poutine.

D'autant qu'un durcissement de ces mêmes sanctions a peu de chances de faire capituler Vladimir Poutine, analyse Carole Grimaud Potter, professeure à l'Université de Montpellier « Même si les oligarques sont touchés, que la situation économique de la Russie devient catastrophique dans les prochains jours, les prochaines semaines, les prochains mois, le gouvernement russe serrera les dents », anticipe cette spécialiste .

« Le pays a déjà vécu le chaos et s'est sorti du marasme économique des années 1990. Et puis la population russe et ses difficultés n'entrent pas dans les calculs de Vladimir Poutine. »

Vers un embargo sur le gaz russe

Reste la question de l'embargo sur le gaz, le pétrole et le charbon russes, une mesure qui pourrait se révéler plus efficace, selon Carole Grimaud Potter. « C'est une arme réelle mais à double tranchant et qui se paierait très chère », nuance-t-elle.

Les États-Unis « discutent très activement » de la possibilité d'interdire ces importations. Mais le sujet divise: l'Allemagne, qui importe 55% de son gaz et 42% de son pétrole de Russie, s'y est opposée. Les importations d'énergie fossile en provenance de Russie sont « essentielles » pour la « vie quotidienne des citoyens » en Europe et l'approvisionnement du continent ne peut pas être assuré autrement à ce stade, a d'ailleurs affirmé ce lundi le chancelier allemand Olaf Scholz.

Vers une autre voie diplomatique

Quant à la voie diplomatique, a-t-elle encore une chance de mettre un terme à la guerre?

« Quand l'Otan a rejeté la demande de Kiev de créer une zone d'exclusion aérienne en Ukraine, Poutine aurait pu s'en féliciter. Au contraire, il a agité encore une fois la menace nucléaire. On ne peut pas négocier avec lui. »

La Russie a en effet annoncé considérer comme « cobelligérant » tout pays tentant d'imposer une zone d'exclusion aérienne au-dessus de l'Ukraine. Cependant, si la diplomatie occidentale n'a jusqu'à présent pas porté ses fruits, une autre voix pourrait en revanche peser. Celle de la Chine, avec son poids économique et militaire.

Pékin s'est d'ailleurs dit prêt à participer « en cas de besoin » à une médiation internationale pour résoudre le conflit en Ukraine. Et si la Chine a assuré que l'amitié avec Moscou était « solide comme un roc », elle n'a pour l'heure affiché aucune volonté d'aider la Russie à contourner les sanctions occidentales, notamment pour préserver ses liens avec ses partenaires commerciaux européens et américains.

Vers une prise de position plus forte de l'Otan

Reste que pour le moment, rien ne semble pouvoir faire vaciller le dirigeant russe. Pas même l'Otan qui a jugé « irresponsables » les bombardements des forces russes de la centrale nucléaire de Zaporijjia mais a exclu d'intervenir militairement dans les airs et sur terre.

« L'Otan se garde bien de prendre toute décision qui pourrait être perçue par Moscou comme une déclaration de guerre », explique Carole Grimaud Potter.

Car cela serait mettre le doigt dans un engrenage et risquer un affrontement entre puissances nucléaires. Ce que Vladimir Poutine perçoit comme une faiblesse: Il sait que l'Otan n'interviendra pas et c'est pour lui un blanc-seing.




Britney Delsey pour DayNewsWorld
There are no translations available.

LE HEROS VOLODYMYR ZELENSKY

PRESIDENT UKRAINIEN

Le président ukrainien Volodymyr Zelensky a suscité l’admiration du monde entier  en alignant sa rhétorique sur ses actions pendant l’invasion russe de son pays.

Son engagement envers l’Ukraine et son peuple contraste avec de nombreux exemples récents, où des élites politiques prétendent se comporter en « leaders serviteurs » tout en affichant des comportements en totale contradiction.

Prenez par exemple la décision du gouverneur de la Californie Gavin Newsom d’assister à un dîner de groupe au restaurant chic French Laundry, dans la vallée de Napa, au plus fort de la pandémie de Covid-19, alors qu’il conseillait aux habitants de son État de rester chez eux afin des respecter les mesures sanitaires. Ou encore le premier ministre britannique Boris Johnson qui participe à une fête alors que le pays est sous le coup d’un ordre de rester à la maison.

Ces exemples suggèrent que, même s’ils prétendent le contraire, les dirigeants politiques se considèrent comme faisant partie d’une élite distincte à laquelle les règles qui régissent les citoyens ordinaires ne s’appliquent pas.

Ce n’est pas le cas de Zelensky,

La comparaison entre les paroles de Zelensky et sa conduite ces dernières années montre qu’il est la quintessence du « leader serviteur », même dans les circonstances les plus précaires.

Le courage de ses engagements

Lorsque Vladimir Poutine a ordonné l’invasion de l’Ukraine, son intention était claire : renverser le gouvernement démocratiquement élu de Zelensky et établir un régime fantoche en faveur du Kremlin. Avec cet objectif en tête, l’armée russe a mis le cap sur Kiev, et Zelensky est immédiatement devenu « la cible n° 1 ».

Faisant preuve d’une force morale et d’un courage inébranlable, Zelensky a refusé de fuir Kiev. Alors que la violence se rapprochait de la capitale dans les jours qui ont suivi, et que la vie de Zelensky était menacée, le président américain Joe Biden a proposé de l’évacuer d’Ukraine. Rejetant l’offre, le président ukrainien a répondu par sa désormais célèbre phrase : « J’ai besoin de munitions, pas d’un taxi ».“

Un homme portant un T-shirt est vu en train de parler sur un écran dans une grande salle de réunion; Volodymyr Zelensky s’adresse au Parlement européen à Bruxelles le 1ᵉʳ mars 2022, depuis Kiev, où il est resté tout au long de l’invasion russe.

Se mettre en danger

La décision de Zelensky de rester à Kiev est à la fois exceptionnelle et profonde de sens. Il existe peu d’exemples récents d’élites politiques prêtes à se mettre personnellement en danger pour le bien collectif – Abraham Lincoln, Nelson Mandela et Mère Teresa sont quelques exemples de « leaders serviteurs » du passé. Sa décision en illustre l’esprit.

Zelensky a demandé aux Ukrainiens et aux Ukrainiennes d’affronter les envahisseurs et de défendre leur pays. Dans une ultime tentative de dissuader Poutine à la veille de l’invasion, il a déclaré : « Quand vous nous attaquerez, vous verrez nos visages, pas nos dos. »

À l’instar des « leaders serviteurs » qui mettent de côté leur propre intérêt afin de protéger les intérêts des personnes qu’ils servent, Zelensky est resté sur place pour participer à la résistance du pays. Il n’a rien demandé aux citoyens qu’il n’était pas déterminé à faire lui-même. Pendant les heures les plus sombres du pays, Zelensky s’est montré un homme du peuple, pour le peuple – pas seulement dans la rhétorique, mais surtout, dans l’action.

L’invasion russe de l’Ukraine se poursuit.

Si le sort du président ukrainien reste incertain, une issue est claire : il vivra en héros ou mourra en martyr.

Il a montré au monde entier ce que signifie être un leader dont l’engagement premier est envers les citoyens qu’il sert.

« Étourdissant destin que celui de Volodymyr Zelensky, humoriste devenu chef de guerre, et, au-delà, source d’inspiration pour l’Europe, ainsi que, peut-être un jour, pour une Russie qui regarderait à nouveau vers l’Ouest – et à laquelle il faudra alors tendre la main. En ukrainien, comme en russe, on dit guéroï. En français, « héros » », selon un confrère du Point




Garett Skyport pour DayNewsWorld
There are no translations available.

GUERRE EN UKRAINE UN CONFLIT QUI

 RISQUE DE S'ENLISER

Au neuvième jour de l'invasion russe en Ukraine, le principe de l'organisation de couloirs humanitaires a été décidé suite à des négociations entre russes et ukrainiens. La centrale de la région de Zaporijjia a été prise par les forces russes et des bombardements ont été recensés dans plusieurs villes du pays. Une nouvelle réunion d'urgence du Conseil de Sécurité de l'ONU a lieu ce vendredi.

La plus grande centrale nucléaire européenne, celle de Zaporijjia, est occupée par les russes. Un incendie s'y est déclaré, selon un porte-parole de la centrale, suite à l'attaque russe. Selon Kiev, dans la nuit de vendredi, des tirs de chars russes sur la centrale provoquent un incendie dans un bâtiment consacré aux formations et dans un laboratoire. Peu après, les services de secours indiquent ne pas pouvoir accéder au site pour intervenir, empêchés par les soldats russes.

« L'envahisseur n'autorise pas les unités des secours publics ukrainiens à entamer l'extinction de l'incendie », déplorent les secours ukrainiens dans un communiqué, précisant qu'un seul des six réacteurs de le centrale fonctionnait. « Si ça explose, ce sera 10 fois pire que Tchernobyl! Les Russes doivent IMMEDIATEMENT cesser le feu, laisser passer les pompiers et permettre un périmètre de sécurité », a ainsi écrit sur Twitter le chef de la diplomatie ukrainienne, Dmytro Kouleba.

Les secours ukrainiens ont finalement pu accéder au site de la centrale nucléaire pour stopper la propagation de l'incendie, puis l'éteindre à 6h20 locales (4h20 GMT). « La sécurité nucléaire est maintenant garantie », a affirmé sur Facebook Oleksandre Staroukh, chef de l'administration militaire de la région de Zaporijjia. L'attaque n'a fait aucune victime, ont indiqué les secours ukrainiens sur Facebook.

Les équipements « essentiels » n'ont pas été touchés, a tenu à rassurer l'Agence internationale de l'énergie atomique (AIEA), dans un tweet.

L'Otan a condamné vendredi les bombardements « irresponsables » des forces russes contre une centrale nucléaire dans le sud de l'Ukraine. « L'attaque contre une centrale nucléaire démontre le caractère irresponsable de cette guerre et la nécessité d'y mettre fin », a insisté le secrétaire général Jens Stoltenberg, qui précise que les Alliés envisagent de nouvelles sanctions contre Moscou pour mettre fin à la guerre.

Plus de 1,2 million de réfugiés ont déjà fui les combats, selon un nouveau bilan des Nations unies. Aux frontières de l'Ukraine, ils sont des milliers à attendre de pouvoir traverser vers les pays voisins.

Le Conseil des droits de l'homme de l'ONU vote massivement pour une enquête en Ukraine

Le texte que Kiev avait mis sur la table condamne les violations des droits de l'homme consécutives à l'agression russe. Et demande l'envoi d'une mission d'enquête. Décision pour le moment très symbolique, mais qui montre l'isolement croissant de Moscou au fur et à mesure que la guerre s'intensifie.

Plus d'une semaine s’est écoulée depuis le début de l’offensive russe en Ukraine et, à ce jour, une seule ville importante est tombée, celle de Kherson, au bord de la mer Noire. Les images de blindés russes immobilisés ou détruits ont fait le tour du monde et la Russie reconnaît plus de 400 soldats tués, chiffre sans doute sous-estimé. Il y aurait trois fois plus de morts côté russe en une semaine qu’en sept ans en Syrie.

« La question a été évoquée et les Alliés sont convenus que nous ne devrions pas avoir d'avions de l'Otan opérant dans l'espace aérien ukrainien ou des troupes de l'Otan au sol, car nous pourrions nous retrouver avec une guerre totale en Europe », a expliqué Jens Stoltenberg au terme d'une réunion d'urgence des ministres des Affaires étrangères de l'Alliance à Bruxelles.

Mykhaïlo Podoliak, conseiller du chef de l’administration présidentielle et l’un des négociateurs qui s’est rendu à la frontière entre la Biélorussie et la Pologne, s’est montré favorable à de nouvelles négociations avec la Russie lors d’une conférence de presse à Lviv.

« La troisième étape peut avoir lieu demain ou après-demain, nous sommes en contact permanent », a-t-il indiqué, précisant que les Ukrainiens n’attendaient que l’accord des Russes pour retourner à la table des négociations.




Alize Marion pour DayNewsWorld
There are no translations available.

DES MERCENAIRES DU GROUPE WAGNER EN UKRAINE POUR ASSASSINER LE PRESIDENT ZELZNSKY

Le quotidien britannique The Times révèle que le groupe Wagner, une armée privée russe proche du Kremlin, aurait déployé des troupes à Kiev afin d’assassiner Volodymyr Zelensky.La vie du président ukrainien serait en grand danger. Selon les informations du Times, révélées ce lundi 28 février, le groupe de mercenaires Wagner serait mobilisé en Ukraine avec pour ordre de mission d’assassiner Volodymyr Zelensky. L’armée privée proche du Kremlin aurait déployé plus de 400 hommes à Kiev bien avant le début des hostilités officielles, puisqu’ils seraient sur place depuis déjà cinq semaines.

Les mercenaires sont partis d’Afrique où le groupe Wagner opère en soutien de l’armée russe. Financée par l’oligarque russe Evgueni Prigojine, la milice a pour mission de défendre les intérêts extérieurs de la Russie. Les 10 000 mercenaires qu’il emploie sont déployés sur les théâtres d'opérations russes, notamment en Syrie, en Libye mais aussi au Venezuela. 

Ces mercenaires nationalistes avaient déjà été mobilisés en Crimée et dans le Donbass en 2013.

Le gouvernement ukrainien a appris la présence des miliciens via une note de ses services secrets. Dans la foulée, Kiev ordonnait un couvre feu stricte de 36 heures, levé ce lundi 28 février à 8h, au moment où les bombardements russes reprenaient.

Volodymyr Zelensky, le président ukrainien, ne s'est pas rendu en personne dans la région biélorusse du Gomel, à la frontière avec l’Ukraine, afin de mener des pourparlers avec le Kremlin, préférant se faire représenter par son ministre de la Défense, Oleksii Reznikov. Samedi, le gouvernement américain a proposé au président de l’exfiltrer du pays, ses jours étant en danger.

 « J’ai besoin de munitions, pas d’un chauffeur », a répondu le chef d’État ukrainien. Vendredi matin, Jean-Yves Le Drian, le ministre de la Défense, a lui aussi proposé l’aide de la France à Volodymyr Zelensky : « Nous sommes en situation de pouvoir l’aider si nécessaire (...) Nous prendrons les dispositions qu’il convient de prendre », a déclaré le ministre sur France Inter.

Les mercenaires sont partis d’Afrique où le groupe Wagner opère en soutien de l’armée russe. Financée par l’oligarque russe Evgueni Prigojine, la milice a pour mission de défendre les intérêts extérieurs de la Russie.

Les 10 000 mercenaires qu’il emploie sont déployés sur les théâtres d'opérations russes, notamment en Syrie, en Libye mais aussi au Venezuela. Ces mercenaires nationalistes avaient déjà été mobilisés en Crimée et dans le Donbass en 2013.


Boby Dean pour DayNewsWorld

HOW FAR WILL PUTIN GO ?

The day after the first day of negotiations, several cities in Ukraine were bombed on Tuesday March 1, 2022.

kyiv, Kharkiv, Odessa, Kherson and Mariupol are surrounded by Russian forces, according to the Ukrainian presidency. A 60 km long military convoy is approaching kyiv. The town of Volvonakha in Donetsk was also heavily shelled.

The city center of Kharkiv, the country's second largest city, was bombed. Russian forces “have regrouped, accumulating armored vehicles, missiles and artillery to encircle and capture kyiv, Kharkiv, Odessa, Kherson and Mariupol,” the Ukrainian presidency said in a statement.

Russia is intentionally bombing cities in Ukraine, including residential areas and civilian infrastructure, in order to cause panic among the population, charged Mikhailo Podoliak, an adviser to Ukrainian President Volodimir Zelensky.

Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, for his part, declared on Tuesday March 1 that Russia would continue "until all objectives" are achieved.

Vladimir Putin announced on Sunday to put "the deterrent forces of the Russian army on special combat alert", which concerns nuclear forces. The announcement sparked a worldwide haro.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov was also widely boycotted at the Human Rights Council. As at the Conference on Disarmament, diplomats left the Council in large numbers a few seconds before the broadcast of the speech by the head of Russian diplomacy.

The invasion of Ukraine by Russia worries many in the former Soviet republics.

The provisional UN toll evokes 102 civilians killed and 304 injured, but the real figures are higher, said Michelle Bachelet. On Sunday February 27, the Ukrainian Minister of Health reported 352 civilians killed, including 14 children, and 1,684 civilians injured, including 116 children. More than 660,000 refugees have already fled the fighting, according to the United Nations.

Moscow seems to have decided to speak only the language of force both vis-à-vis possible Western sanctions and the change of status of Finland by announcing retaliatory measures such as the West "has never known". :

major threat or risk of war and nuclear use?

Not without reason, the head of NATO accuses Putin of having "broken" the peace in Europe.




Alyson Braxton for DayNewsWorld
There are no translations available.

L'INVASION PAR VLADIMIR POUTINE DE L'UKRAINE

 NE SE DEROULE PAS COMME IL L'AVAIT PREVU

Vladimir Poutine serait en colère et suivrait la guerre depuis un bunker lourdement gardé selon Riho Terras ex-commandant en chef des forces armées estoniennes, qui brosse un portrait lamentable du chef des armées russes.

Poutine s'attendait à une victoire éclair en Ukraine, cependant le chef du Kremlin suivrait les opérations depuis un bunker lourdement gardé dans l'Oural.

 Riho Terras, 54 ans, est l’ancien commandant en chef de l’armée estonienne et depuis deux ans,député européen explique en détail que Vladimir Poutine se terrait dans sa «tanière» comme un rat, quelque part dans l’Oural, un bunker dans la montagne lourdement gardé, où des oligarques se seraient également réunis.

 Vladimir Poutine depuis sont bunker serait là pour guider les opérations de l'armée russe en Ukraine.

 Vladimir Poutine attaque les moyens de communication (presse, tv, internet) car ce qu'il craint le plus c'est la vérité, sont but étant de continuer la propagande.

 Même si les informations suivantes ne sont pas avérées, elles proviennent d’une personnalité ayant une grande expérience et un excellent carnet d’adresses en Russie.

Poutine s’attendait à une reddition rapide de Kiev, c'est pourquoi « Riho Terras craint que de terribles attaques russes ne soient bientôt lancées contre la population civile afin de semer la panique parmi les Ukrainiens ».

 « Riho Terras demande à la population ukrainienne de «tenir bon», Objectif: tenir dix jours !

Pour Riho Terras « Poutine n'a pas de plan tactique réel ».

Cette guerre coûte environ 20 milliards de dollars par jour.

Selon Riho Terras, « Poutine possède des missiles pour trois ou quatre jours, tout au plus, utilisés avec parcimonie. Il y a un manque d’armes, les usines d’armement ne sont pas en mesure de remplir les commandes. Les fusils et les munitions sont ce qu’ils peuvent fournir de mieux».

 « La Russie ne pourrait produire à nouveau des armes de grande taille que dans trois ou quatre mois, si tant est qu’elle en produise. »

«Ils n’ont pas de matières premières. Ce qui était auparavant principalement fourni par la Slovénie, la Finlande et l’Allemagne est désormais bloqué.»

Pour Riho Terras « Si l’Ukraine parvient à retenir les Russes pendant dix jours, alors les Russes devront entamer des négociations. Car ils n’ont pas assez d’argent, d’armes ou de matières premières. Et cela même s'ils restent indifférents aux sanctions économiques.»

 Ironie de l'histoire mais retranché dans « un bunker » pour suivre et diriger sa guerre cela rappellerait  certaines mauvaises heures de l'histoire...




Simon Freeman pour DayNewsWorld
There are no translations available.

DES POURPALERS RUSSO-UKRAINIENS

 AVEC UN PROCHAIN SECOND ROUND BIENTOT


Au cinquième jour de l'invasion russe en Ukraine, l'étau se resserre autour d'une Kiev qui réussit pour l'instant à repousser les attaques russes.. Les premiers pourparlers ont lieu lundi entre délégations russe et ukrainienne.

Des délégations russe et ukrainienne ont entamé lundi des pourparlers pour tenter de stopper la guerre en Ukraine, au cinquième jour d'une invasion russe qui a déjà poussé plus de 500.000 Ukrainiens à fuir leur pays. Ces premières négociations interviennent alors que les forces de Vladimir Poutine rencontrent une vive résistance de l'armée ukrainienne, et que les sanctions d'une ampleur inédite adoptées par les Occidentaux ébranlent l'économie russe.

Un premier jour de pourparlers

Après des pourparlers entre les deux parties, les délégations russe et ukrainienne ont quitté la table des négociations au Bélarus et rentrent pour « consultations dans leurs capitales » respectives. Un « deuxième round » de pourparlers est d'ores et déjà convenu. Selon l'un des négociateurs russes, Vladimir Medinski, cette nouvelle rencontre aurait lieu « bientôt » à la frontière polono-bélarusse. Kiev a notamment demandé « un cessez-le-feu immédiat et le retrait des troupes (russes) du territoire ukrainien ». Le président Zelensky, qui ne participe pas aux négociations et dont la délégation est conduite par le ministre de la Défense Oleksiï Reznikov, a appelé depuis Kiev les soldats russes à « déposer les armes ».

Il a également demandé à l'UE une intégration « sans délai » de l'Ukraine. « Je suis sûr que c'est juste. Je suis sûr que c'est possible », a-t-il lancé. Le processus d'intégration d'un nouveau pays à l'UE prend habituellement des années. Le président du Conseil européen Charles Michel a souligné qu'il y avait « différentes opinions » sur ce sujet qui nécessite l'unanimité.

De son côté, le chef de la délégation russe, le conseiller du Kremlin Vladimir Medinski, a lui indiqué vouloir « trouver un accord » avec Kiev qui soit « dans l'intérêt des deux parties ». Le porte-parole du Kremlin Dmitri Peskov a refusé d'énoncer les exigences russes, soulignant que les négociations devaient se faire « dans le silence ».

Mais une situation tendue sur le terrain...

Si les deux parties sont à la table des négociations, la situation sur le terrain reste très tendue.

Sur le terrain, Kiev a indiqué lundi que l'armée russe avait tenté dans la nuit de prendre d'assaut la capitale - où un couvre-feu était en place une grande partie du weekend - mais que les attaques avaient été repoussées. Dès la levée du couvre-feu lundi matin, les habitants faisaient la queue, dans le calme, devant les rares magasins d'alimentation encore ouverts.

Le bilan du conflit jusqu'ici reste incertain. L'Ukraine a fait état de quelque 200 civils et des dizaines de militaires tués depuis jeudi. Parmi les victimes, 16 enfants. L'ONU a indiqué lundi avoir enregistré 102 civils tués, dont 7 enfants, et 304 blessés, mais a averti que les chiffres réels « sont considérablement » plus élevés.

L'armée russe a reconnu pour la première fois dimanche avoir recensé des « morts » et des « blessés » dans son invasion de l'Ukraine, sans donner de chiffres.

Plus de 500.000 réfugiés ukrainiens, selon le HCR




Alize Marion pour DayNewsWorld
There are no translations available.

UNE FORTE RESISTANCE DE L'UKRAINE

FACE L'INVASION RUSSE

En direct à la télévision, le président de l’Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky, multiplie depuis trois jours les messages.

« Nous sommes seuls pour défendre notre pays. Qui va se battre à nos côtés désormais ?

Pour être honnête, je ne vois personne. »

Et d’ajouter amèrement, hier : « C’est peut-être la dernière fois que vous me voyez. »

Au quatrième jour de l’offensive lancée par Vladimir Poutine, les sirènes d’alarme antiaérienne ont retenti à Kiev dans la nuit de samedi à dimanche, appelant les habitants à se réfugier dans les abris de la capitale. Des « unités de sabotage » de Moscou se trouvent dans la ville, mais pas encore des formations régulières de l’armée russe, selon le maire de la capitale, Vitali Klitschko.

Des frappes ont touché un dépôt pétrolier à Vassylkiv, à une trentaine de kilomètres au sud-ouest de Kiev, provoquant un immense incendie, ainsi qu’un gazoduc à Kharkiv, dans l’est du pays.

L’armée russe était entrée dans la deuxième plus grande ville du pays dans la nuit de samedi à dimanche.

D’autres Etats, comme l’Allemagne et le Royaume-Uni, ont également fermé leur espace aérien aux avions russes. Les pays occidentaux durcissent les sanctions contre la Russie et multiplient l’envoi d’aide humanitaire et militaire en

Le maire de Kiev et ancien champion du monde de boxe, Vitali Klitschko, a déclaré dimanche qu’il n’y avait pas de troupes russes dans la capitale ukrainienne. « Nos militaires, nos forces de l’ordre et notre défense territoriale continuent de repérer et neutraliser des saboteurs », a-t-il précisé sur la messagerie Telegram.

De lourdes pertes coté russe

Depuis le début de l’offensive militaire russe, jeudi matin, 31 personnes dont neuf civils ont été tuées, a ajouté le maire de la capitale ukrainienne. 106 autres ont été blessées, dont 47 civils.

La capitale ukrainienne était hier encore davantage menacée par des forces terrestres russes approchant du nord et de l’est. Ils auraient contourné la ville de Chernihiv (nord-est de Kiev) que tiennent solidement les forces ukrainiennes, pour avancer vers Kiev. Dans la matinée, des blindés ont été signalés dans le district d’Obolonskyi, une banlieue urbanisée à une dizaine de kilomètres au nordouest de Kiev.

Des combats sporadiques se sont poursuivis tout au long de la journée avec ces avant-gardes russes. D’autres combats se sont déroulés un peu plus à l’ouest, autour de l’aéroport de fret deGostomel, théâtre de violents affrontements jeudi. Selon Igor Konashenkov, porte-parole du ministère russe de la Défense, une opération de débarquement de troupes aéroportées a réussi hier, permettant de bloquer la capitale ukrainienne depuis l’ouest. Le maire de Kiev, Vitali Klitschko, a reconnu que « la ville est entrée dans une phase de défense […]. La situation est difficile ».

Au sud, c’est surtout dans le secteur de Kherson que l’activité militaire a été la plus intense. Des colonnes de blindés s’y sont déployées hier matin. Kherson est un port, un noeud ferroviaire et un point de franchissement du fleuve Dniepr.

Mais « l’ennemi a vaincu les défenses de la ville avec une force considérable et de lourdes pertes », a reconnu l’administration régionale vers 17 h hier. « Par conséquent, la traversée du Dniepr dans cette région est sous le contrôle des troupes russes. »

Hier soir, des raids aériens russes étaient signalés à Odessa et Marioupol.

À l’est, forces russes et milices des républiques sécessionnistes ont lancé de nouvelles attaques contre les positions des forces ukrainiennes. Kharkiv a de nouveau été bombardée, en particulier hier soir.

Forte résistance ukrainienne

Si l’effondrement militaire ukrainien et la capture rapide de Kiev constituaient bien des ambitions russes, la ténacité gouvernementale et populaire ukrainienne a dû surprendre les responsables du Kremlin.« Le signe d’une forte résistance de l’armée ukrainienne », selon un analyste de Janes, site britannique spécialisé dans les questions de défense.

D’où l’appel étonnant de Vladimir Poutine aux soldats ukrainiens. Le président russe les a exhortés à « prendre le pouvoir » à Kiev en renversant le président Volodymyr Zelensky et son entourage, que Poutine a qualifiés de « néonazis » et de « drogués ».

En outre, les pertes russes pourraient être plus lourdes qu’escomptées : 450 tués selon les Britanniques, près de 2 800 tués, selon la vice-ministre ukrainienne de la Défense, Hanna Malya, qui affirme que la Russie a aussi perdu quatre-vingts chars, 516 véhicules blindés, dix avions et sept hélicoptères depuis jeudi. Les soldats russes pourraient aussi avoir à rendre des comptes à la justice internationale.

En effet, Amnesty International a annoncé avoir lancé des enquêtes pour des « crimes de guerre » qui auraient été commis en particulier jeudi dans les régions de Donetsk, Kharkiv et Cherkasy. Autre motif de plaintes : quatre attaques contre des navires de pays neutres (turc, japonais, moldave) en mer Noire.

Vers des pourpalers

Enfin, signe que le vent martial a tourné, la Russie a proposé à l’Ukraine d’organiser des discussions à Minsk, la capitale de la Biélorussie, après les déclarations du président ukrainien se disant prêt à envisager un statut neutre pour son pays. Hier soir, le porte-parole du président ukrainien annonçait que Kiev et Moscou discutaient du lieu et du calendrier des pourparlers.

Volodymyr Zelenskya  cependant rejeté la proposition russe de pourparlers à Gomel au Bélarus, car ce pays sert de base arrière à l'invasion de l'Ukraine, affirmant que « n'importe quelle autre ville » conviendrait.

« Varsovie, Bratislava, Budapest, Istanbul, Bakou. Nous les avons toutes proposées. Et n'importe quelle autre ville nous conviendrait », a-t-il déclaré dans une vidéo en ligne.




Joanne Courbet pour DayNewsWorld
There are no translations available.

QUELLE EST L' EFFICACITE DE L'ASPHYXIE ECONOMIQUE DE LA RUSSIE PAR LES SANCTIONS

EUROPEENNES ET AMERICAINES ?

En attaquant militairement l’Ukraine dans la nuit de ce jeudi 24 février 2022, la Russie sait qu’elle s’expose à de lourdes sanctions financières de la part des Etats-Unis et de l’Union européenne. Jusque-là, l’Occident n’a pas activé toutes ses représailles économiques, ultime levier afin de dissuader Moscou d’une invasion. Une menace qui n'a pas calmé les ardeurs russes.

Hier, lundi 21 février, la Bourse russe a perdu 12%. Le rouble s’est aussi tassé sous la pression des événements. Les investisseurs russes sont nerveux, mais le Kremlin, lui, reste imperturbable. Le 18 février, Vladimir Poutine a salué les performances de l’économie russe. Avec une hausse du PIB de 4,5% en 2021, les pertes de 2020 ont été effacées et la richesse nationale dépasse maintenant le niveau d’avant la pandémie, s’est réjoui le chef du Kremlin.

Une économie russe plus diversifiée

Le pays a, depuis l'annexion de la Crimée, cherché à émanciper au maximum son économie de l’Occident :Vladimir Poutine pense que les efforts menés depuis 2014 vont porter leurs fruits.

Depuis le début du conflit avec l'Ukraine avec l'annexion de la Crimée, l’économie russe s’est diversifiée, elle est moins dépendante du pétrole et du gaz, et elle a dopé ses points forts. Ses exportations de minerais, d'aluminium, de nickel, d'or, de diamants, et de blé dont elle est devenue le premier acteur mondial lui donnent un avantage commercial sur le reste du monde. «

L’agriculture russe s’est développée, un gazoduc a été créé avec la Chine, Moscou a échangé un nombre important de ses dollars contre de l’or ou des yuans et a développé des échanges commerciaux avec le Brésil, l’Inde et d’autres nations montantes », liste Sylvie Matelly, directrice adjointe de l’Institut de relations internationales et stratégiques (Iris), économiste et spécialiste des sanctions internationales.


Des accords notamment avec la Chine

Marc Touati, économiste et président du cabinet Aux commandes de l’économie et de la finance, résume l’issue de secours russe en un pays : la Chine. « Aussi forte soit les sanctions européennes et américaines, la Russie pourra toujours se reporter sur la Chine, pour faire du commerce direct ou pour y transférer ses produits et les vendre à l’international après », plaide l’économiste.

Dans le bal des condamnations et des critiques du monde sur l’invasion russe, Pékin a brillé par son silence. Preuve supplémentaire s’il le fallait de la neutralité – voire du soutien tacite à la Russie - de la Chine dans ce conflit. «La Chine a toujours respecté la souveraineté et l'intégrité territoriale de tous les pays», a déclaré Wang Yi ce 24 février 2022, selon un compte-rendu de l'entretien téléphonique diffusé par son ministère.

«En même temps, nous avons aussi constaté que la question ukrainienne relevait d'une histoire particulière et compliquée. Nous comprenons les préoccupations raisonnables de la Russie en matière de sécurité», a-t-il dit. Et avec plus de 4.000 kilomètres de frontière entre les deux pays, il y a de quoi réaliser des exportations facilement, « ce qui rendrait caduques les effets d’un blocus de l’Occident », note Mac Touati.

Les deux pays cherchent en effet à régler leurs échanges bilatéraux dans leur monnaie nationale. C’est surtout la Russie qui a intensifié ses efforts. Seulement 20% de ses exportations vers la Chine sont libellées en billet vert. En revanche, 60% des exportations chinoises vers la Russie sont encore en dollar.

Des mesures russes en matière de finance

Le chef du Kremlin a veillé par ailleurs à consolider les comptes publics. L’endettement de l'État est maîtrise. Il ne représente que 13% du PIB, alors que c’est plutôt 80% en Europe. Le budget est construit sur un baril de brut à 44 dollars, il en vaut aujourd'hui près du double. Cette gestion prudente des deniers publics a même dégagé un excédent budgétaire l’an dernier. La dette des entreprises libellée en dollar a été restructurée en rouble.

Cela fait partie du vaste plan de dédollarisation entamé il y a huit ans, suite aux sanctions décidées après l’annexion de la Crimée. Pour se prémunir d’une nouvelle salve de sanctions, Moscou a cherché à s’affranchir du dollar.

De plus la Banque centrale russe a totalement renouvelé son portefeuille de réserves de change. Délaissant le dollar au profit du yuan, de l’euro et de l’or. Elle a par ailleurs considérablement augmenté ses réserves en les portant à un niveau record, dépassant les 630 milliards de dollars à la fin du mois de janvier. C’est presque deux fois plus que les réserves de 2014. Ce sont les quatrièmes au monde, équivalentes à celle d’une pétro-monarchie. La Russie dispose également d’un fonds souverain de 180 milliards de dollars Bref, le pays pourrait puiser dans ses fonds et à s’endetter pour une guerre, une marge de manœuvre que l’Europe n’a pas forcément.

En ce qui concerne l’exclusion du pays du réseau Swift, messagerie interbancaire mondiale qui relie les banques entre elles notamment pour les transactions, la Russie a cherché à contourner le problème : la Banque nationale du pays a développé son propre réseau, le Système de transfert de messages financiers, relié à 23 banques étrangères. Le pays songe également à rejoindre les réseaux bancaires chinois et indien, afin de compenser les pertes. Même logique pour les avoirs des oligarques russe, menacés d’être bloqués : ces milliardaires ont placé une partie de leur argent ailleurs qu’en Occident.

Toutes ses mesures vont permettre à la Russie de soutenir le rouble et les banques si elles sont ciblées par des sanctions, de régler les importations.

La Russie mieux armée que l'Europe ?

La Russie est peut-être même plus armée et prête que l’Occident pour une guerre économique. La dette publique du pays ne dépasse pas les 20 % de son PIB, contre 120 % pour la France et 98,3 % pour la zone Euro. Autre élément en faveur de Moscou, sa population. Sylvie Matelly résume simplement : « Si le prix de l’essence augmente en France, le pays sera dans la rue. Ce ne sera probablement pas le cas en Russie. ». Dernier point sur la solidité des reins de l’économie russe, sa quasi-indépendance : « En termes d’énergie, le pays a ce qu’il faut. Pour les produits manufacturés que lui fournit d’habitude l’Occident, il peut demander à la Chine ».

La Commission européenne travaille d'ailleurs depuis des semaines à l'élaboration des sanctions, en calculant l'impact économique prévisible pour chaque Etat membre. Les débats, ce soir, ne doivent pas encore porter sur d'éventuelles compensations à certains pays. Les plus touchés devraient être la Finlande, les trois Etats baltes et la Pologne. Les Vingt-Sept ne devraient pas encore discuter d'un plan de répartition, mais la question pourrait se poser rapidement.

Pékin  devient le pivot indispensable dans la guerre économique à venir. La Chine, en cas d’alliance avec la Russie, rend anodine la plupart des sanctions occidentales.




Garett Skyport pour DayNewsWorld
There are no translations available.

GUERRE EN UKRAINE DECLAREE PAR LA RUSSIE

Après des semaines de poker menteur et une escalade des tensions ces derniers jours, la Russie a donc annoncé entrer en guerre avec l’Ukraine, jeudi 24 février 2022. Dans un discours télévisé publié tôt dans la journée de jeudi, Vladimir Poutine a annoncé une « opération militaire spéciale » pour « protéger les personnes qui ont été victimes d'intimidation pendant huit ans par le régime de Kiev. Et à cette fin, nous nous efforcerons de démilitariser et de dénazifier l'Ukraine ».

La décision du président russe intervient après la reconnaissance par ce dernier de l’indépendance des Républiques populaires autoproclamées de Donetsk et Lougansk, territoires établis en Ukraine dirigés par des séparatistes pro-russes depuis 2014. Des « traités d'amitié et d'entraide » avaient été signés le 22 février entre la Russie et ces territoires, ouvrant la voie à une intervention militaire de la Russie, sur laquelle s’est donc engagé Vladimir Poutine.

Bombardements en Ukraine

Depuis, des positions de grandes villes d'Ukraine sont la cible de nombreux bombardements, parmi lesquelles Kiev, Odessa, Kharkiv, Marioupol ou encore Dnipro et de nombreuses communes, plus petites. Plusieurs aéroports ont fait l'objet d'attaques et d'intenses combats ont lieu près de Kiev, la capitale. Les forces russes auraient déjà percé la région alentour.

L'armée de Vladimir Poutine a détruit 74 infrastructures militaires en Ukraine, parmi lesquelles 11 aérodromes, trois postes de commandements, ainsi qu'une base navale, a indiqué le porte-parole du ministère russe de la Défense, Igor Konashenkov, cité par Interfax, agence de presse russe. Il précise par ailleurs qu'un hélicoptère de combat et quatre drones ukrainiens ont été abattus.

Selon l'armée ukrainienne, quatre missiles balistiques ont été tirés depuis la Biélorussie « en direction du sud-ouest », soit l'Ukraine. C'est en Biélorussie, pays ami, que la Russie a en partie mené des exercices militaires ces derniers jours. Elle a également pénétré en Ukraine via les frontières de la Biélorussie avec l'Ukraine. La capitale ukrainienne Kiev n'est distante que d'environ 150 kilomètres par la route de la frontière biélorusse.

« Pas de panique, nous allons vaincre », a déclaré le président ukrainien Volodymyr Zelensky.

A L'origine de la guerre

A l'origine, principalement, de la menace d'une attaque de la Russie en Ukraine : la volonté de cette dernière d'intégrer l'Otan, ce que n'accepte pas Vladimir Poutine. Il a à nouveau redit son opposition à cette volonté, condition sine qua none pour un apaisement des tensions.

C'est à l'est de l'Ukraine que les tensions se concentrent, dans les oblasts (l'équivalent des régions en France) de Donestk et Lougansk (en rouge sur la carte). Si ces territoires appartiennent à l'Ukraine, la situation y est complexe depuis 2014. Historiquement, ce sont des territoires dans lesquels la langue et la culture russe sont imprégnées. Lors de la crise ukrainienne, qui a abouti au renversement du pouvoir en place (Viktor Ianoukovytch était un président proche de la Russie), des séparatistes pro-russes ont pris le contrôle d'une partie de ces deux régions, avec l'aide de la Russie..

Les provinces de Donetsk et de Lougansk forment, avec d'autres territoires russes, le bassin houiller du Donbass, territoire où, depuis 2014, les tensions ne sont jamais véritablement retombées mais se sont surtout exacerbées ces derniers temps, concentrant la majorité des attaques.

Le 12 juillet 2021, Vladimir Poutine publie d'ailleurs un long texte sur le site du Kremlin dans lequel il revient sur l’histoire qui lie la Russie et l’Ukraine depuis des siècles. Dans ses écrits, le président russe rappelle que « les Russes et les Ukrainiens ne formaient qu’un seul peuple » au regard de l’histoire entre les deux nations. Pour lui, l’indépendance prise par le pays voisin en 1991 « est notre grand malheur et notre grande tragédie commune ». Un sentiment renforcé avec la volonté réitérée, en août 2021, du président ukrainien Volodymyr Zelenski d’intégrer l’Otan, et donc de s’éloigner un peu plus de la Russie.

Et la Chine...

«La Chine a toujours respecté la souveraineté et l'intégrité territoriale de tous les pays», a déclaré Wang Yi, selon un compte-rendu de l'entretien téléphonique diffusé par son ministère. «En même temps, nous avons aussi constaté que la question ukrainienne relevait d'une histoire particulière et compliquée. Nous comprenons les préoccupations raisonnables de la Russie en matière de sécurité», a-t-il dit.

« La volonté partagée par les Russes et les Chinois de réviser l’ordre existant s’est muée en une convergence idéologique », annonce Laurent Malvezin, Président de Montsalvy Consulting dans une tribune au « Monde ».


Joanne Courbet pour DayNewsWorld

THE INDEPENDENCE OF DONETZ AND LUHANSK PARTICIPATES IN THE STRUGGLE AGAINST THE EXTENSION OF NATO TOWARDS THE EAST

This Monday, February 21, 2022, in the Kremlin, a meeting of the Security Council, chaired by Vladimir Putin, is broadcast live on television: a show entirely devoted to the question of whether or not Russia should recognize the two breakaway republics of Donetsk and Luhansk in the Donbass. The decision of the Russian president fell on Monday evening.

End of the Minsk agreements

The recognition of the independence of these two territories was recorded by Moscow.

It therefore puts on the ground the diplomatic efforts around the Minsk protocol or the Normandy format, involving France and Germany.

But entrenching the Donbass and leaving the rest of Ukraine untouched for the time being would be a scenario that some might consider a "minor incursion", not deserving of the full economic sanctions that, in addition to harming Russia, would also pose political risks and economic difficulties to many European countries, first and foremost to Germany.

The speech delivered on February 21 by Vladimir Putin, in which the Russian number one announced Moscow's recognition of the independence of the two separatist republics in eastern Ukraine, however, gave a lot of space to what Moscow presents relentlessly, for years, as its primary security concern: the extension of NATO towards the East.

Indeed in the standoff which is currently pitting Moscow on one side, Kiev and the West on the other, the Russian side demands in particular that NATO undertakes never to accept Ukraine into its midst.

The Russian proposals

In order to reassure the West, Russia has proposed treaties to the United States and NATO providing for a renunciation of enlargement to the East and a return to the security situation resulting from the end of the Cold War. Moscow points out that, in return for the dissolution of the Warsaw Pact, the West had verbally promised Mikhail Gorbachev not to enlarge NATO to the countries formerly called “Eastern countries”, except for reunified Germany.

Declassified US, Soviet, German, British and French documents released by the George Washington University National Security Archive testify to the assurance given by then US Secretary of State James Baker to Number 1 during their meeting on February 9, 1990: on the expansion of NATO, Baker had announced that the Alliance would not advance "not an inch to the east". However, this promise was not kept.

Vladimir Putin's nightmare is to see his western border completely locked by a NATO that would have expanded to Ukraine. From his point of view, in such a scenario, the very existence of Russia would be threatened. During the press conference on February 7, 2022 following his interview with Emmanuel Macron, the Russian president developed his vision of things:

“NATO is far from being a peaceful organization; it is not a political organization, but a military one, look at what it has done since the fall of the USSR in 1991, in Yugoslavia, in Iraq, in Syria, in Libya... without respecting international law, without endorsement by the UN Security Council! »Before adding:

“If Ukraine joins NATO, it will attack Crimea which is part of the Russian Federation. […] You want me to make war on NATO? Of course not ! […] It is for this reason that we announced our proposals for a negotiation process. »

Moscow clearly demands that the expansion of this structure be halted near the Russian borders, and the so-called “open door” policy be abandoned.

Seen from Moscow, NATO has advanced 500 km to the east; and therefore for thirty years the Russians consider that they have been betrayed and despised. Russia considers that the countries that joined NATO after the end of the cold war have strengthened their security to the detriment of its own, and argues its requests thus: “You have installed the Tomahawk missile launchers right up to our borders. We will no longer tolerate this situation, because the flight time of these missiles to Russia, from Ukraine or the Baltic States is estimated at 7-10 minutes, or even 5 minutes for hypersonic systems! »

Hence this political and military balance of power. In Russian eyes, Westerners will only respect Russians if they show their strength.

Moscow's demands

In addition to military deployment, Moscow maintains its main demands: the end of NATO's enlargement policy, the commitment not to deploy offensive weapons near Russian territory and the withdrawal of infrastructure from the transatlantic Alliance. on the 1997 borders, i.e. before the integration of the countries of the former Soviet bloc.

For this Russia requires a written commitment.

While it seems unlikely that President Putin will obtain a document in which Washington and NATO pledge never to welcome Ukraine as a member, the Americans have nevertheless paved the way for a new strategic arms reduction agreement. which would succeed New Start (expired in 2021). They proposed addressing the differing views relating to the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty, which Trump pulled out of in 2019. They suggested that the Russians could inspect NATO missile defense sites in Poland and Romania, in order to allay their fears that Tomahawk missiles could be installed there.

For Nicole Gnesotto, vice-president of the Jacques Delors Institute, “the role of Europeans must be to say 'neither NATO nor aggression'. (...) Ukraine cannot join NATO because it is not west of Portugal, but west of Moscow. Neither aggression: Russia must (...) recognize both the sovereignty and the integrity of Ukraine. »

The American runaway, also linked to domestic political issues, should not be overlooked.

"There will be a compromise with Russia, and Biden will be portrayed here by hardliners - a large part of the Republican Party - as a sort of Neville Chamberlain [the British Prime Minister who signed the Munich Accord in 1938 , editor's note] of modern times. “, argues Rajan Menon, researcher at the American think tank Defense Priorities and at Columbia University.

“The Russians and the Americans will agree on certain subjects; each of the two parties will try to save face. It is certainly for this reason that the Americans asked the Russians not to make their response public, in the same way that they had not made public their exchanges with Moscow during the Cuban missile crisis in 1962. .”, concludes a specialist in Slavic countries.




Joanne Courbet for DayNewsWorld
There are no translations available.

UKRAINE FIN DES ACCORDS DE MINSK ET

GUERRE INFORMATIONNELLE

Les présidents russe Vladimir Poutine et des Etats-Unis Joe Biden ont accepté lundi de se rencontrer lors d'un sommet, proposé par leur homologue français Emmanuel Macron à la condition qu'une invasion de l'Ukraine n'ait pas eu lieu d'ici-là, une annonce surprise qui intervient alors qu'une guerre était donnée pour imminente.

A la mi-journée ce lundi pourtant, aucune confirmation officielle d'une telle rencontre n'avait été donnée par l'une ou l'autre des parties.

« Si une invasion n'a pas eu lieu »

« Les présidents Biden et Poutine ont chacun accepté le principe d'un tel sommet », s'est félicité l'Elysée dans un communiqué, en précisant que les pourparlers seraient dans un second temps élargis à « toutes les parties prenantes » à la crise ukrainienne. Les Etats-Unis « s'engagent à poursuivre la diplomatie jusqu'au moment où une invasion débutera », a indiqué dans un communiqué la porte-parole de la Maison Blanche Jen Psaki.

« Le président Biden a accepté en principe une rencontre avec le président Poutine (...) si une invasion n'a pas eu lieu », a-t-elle poursuivi.

Le contenu du sommet sera préparé par le secrétaire des Etats-Unis Antony Blinken et son homologue russe Sergueï Lavrov lors de leur rencontre prévue jeudi prochain, a précisé de son côté l'Elysée.

Aucune garantie de sécurité mutuelle sur le long terme

Pendant ce temps, la crise se poursuit. Poutine parle de solution diplomatique et de rapatriement des troupes postées à la frontière ukrainienne vers leurs bases en Russie, mais les représentants de l'OTAN et des États-Unis continuent d'affirmer qu'ils ne voient aucun signe de ce genre de retrait. De fait, les images satellite montrent que de nouveaux trains militaires sont arrivés à la frontière depuis que Poutine a annoncé que certaines unités se retiraient.

Probablement une entité russe a lancé une attaque par déni de service contre les sites internet de l'armée ukrainienne, du ministère de la Défense et de plusieurs grandes banques du pays –un possible signe avant-coureur de futures cyber-frappes bien plus dangereuses ?

Cette annonce par Paris survient alors que la Russie et l'Ukraine ont continué dimanche de s'accuser mutuellement d'être responsables des nouveaux combats dans l'Est séparatiste ukrainien. L'ordre d'évacuation a poussé 53 000 civils sur trois millions vivant en zone séparatiste à gagner la Russie, selon Moscou, et l'état d'urgence a été décrété dans la région russe de Koursk. Le président ukrainien Volodymyr Zelensky dénoncé des « tirs provocateurs » des rebelles parrainés par Moscou et appelle à la reprise des négociations avec la Russie sous l'égide de l'OSCE et à l'instauration d'un « cessez-le feu immédiat ».

Des responsables de la région indépendantiste de Lougansk font état lundi de deux civils tués dans des bombardements de l'armée ukrainienne, des accusations invérifiables de source indépendante.

Fin des accords de Minsk: indépendance des deux régions du Donbass

Le parlement russe a voté une résolution autorisant Poutine à reconnaître l'indépendance des républiques populaires autoproclamées de Donetsk et de Louhansk, les deux provinces de la région du Donbass, dans le sud-est de l'Ukraine, occupées par des séparatistes prorusses armés. Séparées de fait de l’Ukraine depuis 2014, ces deux « Républiques populaires » abritent 3,8 millions de d’habitants russophones sur l'équivalent de trois départements français (18 000 km2).

 Un quart de la population possède un passeport russe. Pour justifier son initiative, Moscou évoque la possibilité d’un « génocide » par les Ukrainiens, une affirmation qualifiée de « ridicule » parle chancelier Scholz.

Cela lui permettrait d'envoyer des milliers de soldats, de chars et d'autres armes dans ces territoires, à la «demande» de leurs dirigeants, afin d'en défendre les peuples des assauts de l'Ukraine.

Ce lundi 21 février 2022, au Kremlin, une réunion du Conseil de sécurité, présidée par Vladimir Poutine est diffusée en direct à la télévision : un show entièrement consacré à la question de savoir si, oui ou non, la Russie doit reconnaître les deux républiques séparatistes de Donetsk et Louhansk dans le Donbass. La décision du président russe devait tomber dans la soirée de lundi, a-t-il promis...

Une reconnaissance de l’indépendance de ces deux territoires serait une sérieuse aggravation de la crise Ukrainienne.

Elle mettrait à terre les efforts diplomatiques autour du protocole de Minsk ou du format Normandie, impliquant la France et l’Allemagne.

L'idée serait aussi que retrancher le Donbass et ne pas toucher, pour l'instant, au reste de l'Ukraine, serait un scénario que d'aucuns pourraient considérer comme une «incursion mineure», ne méritant pas d'infliger la totalité des sanctions économiques qui, en plus de porter préjudice à la Russie, poseraient également des risques politiques et des difficultés économiques à de nombreux pays européens, en premier lieu à l'Allemagne.

« À quelle phase d'une guerre classique en sommes-nous, la paix bidon, la mobilisation ostentatoire ou l'accumulation d'atouts en vue de futures négociations ?

Chacune de ces possibilités pourrait être un prélude à la guerre, à la paix ou à quelque chose entre les deux. », s'interroge alors un journaliste.




Alyson Braxton  pour DayNewsWorld
There are no translations available.

DES BOMBARDEMENT EN COURS DANS L'EST DE L'UKRAINE

Après le retrait de troupes russes massées à la frontière ukrainienne, les combats ont repris dans l'Est du pays. Des bombardements sont en cours vendredi près de Stanytsia Louganska,

De nouveaux bombardements ont été entendus dans la région séparatiste prorusse du Donbass, exacerbant les tensions de la crise ukrainienne. Près de Stanytsia Louganska, une ville de l'est de l'Ukraine sous le contrôle des forces gouvernementales, des bombardements sont en cours selon les constatations des journalistes sur place, vendredi 18 février 2022. Le son de bombardements était audible dans cette localité, déjà touchée la veille par des bombardements qui y ont notamment endommagé une école maternelle sur fond de craintes d'une invasion russe en Ukraine.

Le regain de tension sur ce front est une source de tension supplémentaire dans une crise russo-occidentale qui menace de dégénérer en conflit depuis des semaines alors que 150 000 soldats russes sont déployés, selon les États-Unis et Kiev, aux frontières ukrainiennes. Américains et Britanniques ont accusé jeudi la Russie de chercher un prétexte pour attaquer et ont dit que le conflit entre l'Ukraine et les séparatistes prorusses sur son territoire pourrait en devenir un.

Accusations mutuelles

L'armée ukrainienne et les séparatistes prorusses se sont mutuellement accusés vendredi de nouveaux bombardement dans l'Est du pays, en proie depuis la veille à une flambée de violences sur fond de craintes d'une attaque russe.

Les deux camps s'accusent mutuellement d'être à l'origine de cette nouvelle flambée de violences dans un conflit qui a fait plus de 14.000 morts depuis son déclenchement en 2014.

Alors qu’une conférence internationale sur la sécurité s’ouvre à Munich, à laquelle ne participera pas Sergueï Lavrov, l’Allemagne a critiqué des exigences datant « de la Guerre froide ».

 Une expression aussi employée par la Chine, mais pour dénoncer l’attitude des Etats-Unis et de l’Otan.

Une grande bataille de communication se joue autour de la crise en Ukraine. Les États-Unis amplifient les menaces d'invasion russe tandis que la Russie moquerait l'Occident.


Joanne Courbet pour DayNewsWorld
There are no translations available.

PAIX OU GUERRE EN UKRAINE

LA RENCONTRE POUTINE-SCHOLZ POUR LA PAIX

Pour l'heure, la tension semble être un peu retombée entre les Occidentaux et la Russie depuis l'annonce par le Kremlin, mardi, du repli de certaines troupes militaires russes.

Vers unesescalade

La rencontre entre le président russe Vladimir Poutine et le chancelier allemand Olaf Scholz  mardi 15 février 2022, au Kremlin, devait durer quatre heures, mais les deux hommes ont fait plus vite que prévu le tour de la question. Au sortir de leur réunion, Olaf Scholz a estimé que la situation était « grave mais pas désespérée ».

Selon le chancelier allemand, le retrait partiel des troupes russes de la frontière ukrainienne annoncé mardi15.02. 2022 par Vladimir Poutine est un « bon signe » vers une désescalade jugée « urgente » après des semaines de tension.

Exigence de Moscou cependant maintenues

Mais Moscou maintient ses principales exigences : la fin de la politique d'élargissement de l'Otan, l'engagement de ne pas déployer d'armes offensives à proximité du territoire russe et le retrait des infrastructures de l'Alliance transatlantique sur les frontières de 1997, soit avant l'intégration des pays de l'ex-bloc soviétique.

Il s'agit donc pour les deux parties d'aboutir à un compromis, sans qu'elles aient à renoncer à leurs principes respectifs, a résumé Olaf Scholz qui estime que les efforts diplomatiques pour éviter un conflit sont « loin d'être épuisés ».

Olaf Scholz, le chancelier allemand a emprunté le même chemin diplomatique qu' Emmanuel Macron mais en sens inverse : d’abord Kiev avant Moscou. Au président ukrainien Zelensky, il a promis l’aide économique allemande, mais pas de livraison d’armes, et s'est engagé à répondre aux côtés des pays alliés en cas d’agression russe. « Personne ne doit douter de la préparation et de la détermination de l’UE et de l’OTAN si la Russie attaque l’Ukraine », déclare-t-il.

« Voulons-nous (d’une guerre) ou pas ? Bien sûr que non. C’est pour cela qu’on a avancé nos propositions pour un processus de négociations », a déclaré le président russe, lors d’une conférence de presse avec le chancelier allemand Olaf Scholz.

Le président russe a réaffirmé qu’il voulait « continuer le travail » avec l’Occident sur la sécurité européenne . « On va malheureusement consacrer une grande partie de notre temps aujourd'hui à la question liée à la situation en Europe, à la sécurité et aux discussions qui sont en cours sur cette question, notamment en lien avec l'Ukraine », a déclaré Poutine au début de cette rencontre, selon les images de la télévision publique russe.

Début d’un retrait militaire planifié

La Russie a ordonné mardi le retour dans leurs garnisons d’unités déployées près de la frontière ukrainienne, un premier signe de détente, leur présence laissant craindre depuis des semaines une invasion, sur fond de tensions russo-occidentales. L’annonceest intervervenut alors que le chancelier allemand Olaf Scholz était à Moscou pour rencontrer mardi après-midi le président russe Vladimir Poutine et désamorcer cette crise, nourrie par le déploiement de plus de 100.000 hommes dans le voisinage de l’Ukraine, pays pro-occidental que le Kremlin veut faire revenir dans sa sphère d’influence.

Après l'annonce du retrait partiel des soldats russes à la limite entre la Russie et l'Ukraine, faite hier par le Kremlin, un autre repli militaire dans la péninsule de Crimée est confirmé ce mercredi 16 février par le ministère de la Défense russe. « Les unités du district militaire du sud ayant achevé leurs exercices tactiques sur les bases de la presqu'île de Crimée retournent par voie ferrée vers leur base d'attache », a-t-il fait savoir. Les forces russes sont aussi présentes en Biélorussie, pays frontalier de l'Ukraine, à l'occasion d'exercice militaires conjoints organisés jusqu'au dimanche 20 février. Mais le pays pro-russe assure que « pas un seul soldat » russe ne restera sur son sol au-delà de cette date. « Pas un seul soldat, pas un seul équipement ne restera sur le territoire de la Biélorussie après la tenue des manœuvres avec la Russie », rapporte plus précisément une agence de presse.

Le poids de l'Allemagne dans la résolution de la crise ukrainienne ?

Le chancelier allemand, qui se trouvait à Kiev ce lundi et se rend à Moscou mardi, a menacé la Russie de « lourdes conséquences » en cas d'« agression militaire ». Mais pour calmer la crise ukrainienne, l'Allemagne dispose de peu de moyens de pression.

Nord Stream 2, seul levier de pression...

Les sanctions évoquées par Olaf Scholz restent floues aussi. Même si les experts pensent en premier au projet gazier germano-russe Nord Stream 2. Le gazoduc est déjà construit. Il ne reste qu'à le mettre en service. Claudia Kemfert, cheffe du département « énergie, transport et environnement » de l'institut allemand de recherches économiques, indique sur la DW que « l'Allemagne n'a pas beaucoup de moyens de pression, si ce n'est de mettre un blocage au projet Nord Stream 2, ce qui est son unique levier de pression politique. En revanche, l'Allemagne n'a pas l'habitude d'ériger le chantage en stratégie. »

Les milieux d'affaires allemands observent avec inquiétude la menace que la crise ukrainienne fait peser indirectement sur les relations économiques.