Home / World / Ukraine News Today May 17, 2017: Over 500 homes in Avdiyivka damaged by militants since year’s start; Poroshenko says blocking Russian social media in Ukraine aimed at opposing propaganda; Visa-free regime for Ukraine approved in Strasbourg

Ukraine News Today May 17, 2017: Over 500 homes in Avdiyivka damaged by militants since year’s start; Poroshenko says blocking Russian social media in Ukraine aimed at opposing propaganda; Visa-free regime for Ukraine approved in Strasbourg

Ukraine News Today: Over 500 homes in Avdiyivka damaged by militants since year's start; Poroshenko says blocking Russian social media in Ukraine aimed at opposing propaganda; Visa-free regime for Ukraine approved in Strasbourg
Ukraine News Today May 17, 2017: Over 500 homes in Avdiyivka damaged by militants since year's start; Poroshenko says blocking Russian social media in Ukraine aimed at opposing propaganda; Visa-free regime for Ukraine approved in Strasbourg

Police: Over 500 homes in Avdiyivka damaged by militants since year’s start

Over 500 homes –private houses and flats belonging to civilian residents in the Ukrainian-controlled town of Avdiyivka in Donetsk region – have been damaged by attacks mounted by Russia’s hybrid military forces since the beginning of the year, according to local police, UNIAN reports.

“Since the beginning of the year, over 500 (!) homes – private houses and flats of civilians – have been damaged in the town,” press secretary of Donetsk region’s police Natalia Shiman wrote on Facebook on Wednesday, May 17. She also reported about a recent attack on Wednesday morning as a result of which three residential houses had been damaged.

“The morning in Avdiyivka. Three houses at Sportyvna Street have been damaged,” she wrote captions with posted images of the damaged facilities. No casualties have been reported. Police officers are working on the site, she added.

Police earlier reported that a private house had been damaged in a militant attack on the old part of Avdiyivka on Tuesday evening. Such attacks fall under criminal charges under Article 258 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine – an act of terrorism.

President Poroshenko says blocking Russian social media in Ukraine aimed at opposing propaganda

The blocking of Russian social networking websites in Ukraine is a measure to counter propaganda, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said.

“Ukraine has been living in war conditions for three years now, amid Russian aggression against our independent country. The important part of that war is a hybrid war waged by Russia,” Poroshenko said at a press conference in Strasbourg on Wednesday.

“Enormous propaganda budgets are being allocated to destabilize the situation both inside Ukraine and within Europe,” Poroshenko said.

It should be recalled that Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has signed an order to introduce new sanctions against Russia, which foresees, among other things, the blocking of access to Russian media outlets and popular social networks.

Visa-free regime for Ukraine approved in Strasbourg

On Wednesday, May 17, in Strasbourg, President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko took part in the signing ceremony of the legislative act on abolishing visa requirements for Ukrainians for short-term trips to the countries of the European Union and the Schengen zone, Joinfo.com reports with reference to Ukrinform.

The document was signed by President of the European Parliament Antonio Tajani and Minister for Home Affairs and National Security of Malta Carmelo Abela.

According to the legislative order, Ukraine is included to the list of third countries whose citizens are canceled visa requirements when travelling for short stays of up to 90 days to the Schengen area. The visa-free travel will apply to all EU Member States except for Ireland and the UK, as well as the countries of the Schengen area, including Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.

As expected, the visa-free travels for Ukrainian citizens are to come into force on June 11.