Ukraine President’s advisor assesses probability of Russian annexation of occupied Donbas
Director of the National Institute for Strategic Studies, academician, adviser to the President of Ukraine Volodymyr Horbulin believes that Russia will not go for the annexation of certain regions of Donetsk and Luhansk regions, according to an UNIAN correspondent.
“Today, the Russian Federation hanged Donbas as a stone on Ukraine’s neck, it cannot take it completely to the Russian Federation. Crimea is enough for them to feel their economic situation,” Horbulin said at a press conference in Kyiv. “I do not think that this can happen, although there is such a desire among some leaders in Luhansk and Donetsk regions. But taking the Donbas burden – it is unlikely that Russia will resort to this,” Horbulin said.
Earlier, Ukrainian Interior Minister Arsen Avakov said that the Ukrainian security forces should already be ready for the return of the occupied territories of Donbas.
Financing of medicine reimbursement program could be expanded by UAH 250 mln in 2017 – PM
Ukrainian Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman has said that the financing of the state-sustained medicine reimbursement program for treating cardiovascular diseases, bronchial asthma and type 2 diabetes mellitus could be expanded by UAH 250 million ($925,000) in 2017, Joinfo.com reports with reference to Interfax-Ukraine.
“I do not rule out that we even this year would ask parliament to increase the financing of the program, for example, by UAH 250 million as we project,” he said in parliament on Friday.
He said that not all pharmacies joined the program and not all citizens are informed about its conditions.
Groysman said that the work to inform citizens on the Affordable Medicine program and provide access to medicines must be done.
Two Ukrainian servicemen wounded amid 65 enemy attacks in Donbas in last day
Russia’s hybrid military forces attacked Ukrainian army positions in Donbas 65 times in the past 24 hours with two Ukrainian soldiers reported as wounded in action, according to the press service of the Anti-Terrorist Operation (ATO) Headquarters, Joinfo.com reports with reference to UNIAN.
“The Mariupol sector remains the center of fire confrontation. The enemy used 122mm artillery systems, 120mm mortars, infantry fighting vehicles and heavy machine guns against our soldiers near the village of Vodiane,” the press service said. The defenders of the village of Shyrokyne came under fire from 120mm mortars, infantry fighting vehicles, ZU-23-2 anti-aircraft guns, grenade launchers and small arms. “The Russian occupation forces fired 120mm mortars and small arms on the Ukrainian Marines near the village of Hnutove, as well as 82mm mortars and anti-tank grenade launchers near the village of Talakivka. The militants also shelled grenade launchers of various systems on the Ukrainian positions near the village of Pavlopil, and the towns of Mar’inka and Krasnohorivka. In addition, heavy machine guns were used against our defenders near Maryinka, and the villages of Chermalyk and Hranitne. Furthermore, the enemy fired small arms on the defenders of the village of Starohnativka. Snipers were also active near the villages of Vodiane, Talakivka, Pavlopil and Novotroyitske,” the headquarters said.
In the Donetsk sector, the Russian-backed militants opened fire from 120mm and 82mm mortars, grenade launchers of various systems and heavy machine guns on the Ukrainian positions near the town of Avdiyivka. The defenders of the village of Luhanske came under 82mm mortar fire. “The invaders opened fire from an anti-tank missile system, 82mm mortars, grenade launchers and infantry fighting vehicles on the defenders of the village of Opytne. Grenade launchers of various systems were used near the village of Nevelske, while ZU-23-2 anti-aircraft guns, grenade launchers and heavy machine guns were used to attack the Ukrainian positions near the village of Kamianka. Moreover, the enemy fired small arms and heavy machine guns on the defenders of Butivka coal mine,” the report says.
In the Luhansk sector, the militants shelled grenade launchers of various systems on the defenders of the villages of Novo-Oleksandrivka and Katerynivka.