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Poet and Efran Kaye's tribute
to everyone killed in wars.

Bless the large numbers of Ethiopians,
the many good people in Indonesia, and
the folks of Russia, Greece and Egypt,
who are now playing it.


Most US people polled believe that 9/11 was
an "inside job",
but what would they feel if they
found out that it was
designed by Zionists, who
deliberately killed thousands
of innocent US
citizens to drive the US into wars on Muslims?

They'd be angry, right?

Fernando Imposimato, President of the Italian Supreme
Court, calls for a criminal investigation of 9/11, comparing
the attack to false flag incidents carried out by the CIA
in Italy: Operation Gladio.


"The 9/11 attacks were a global state terror operation
that was permitted by the US
administration, which
had foreknowledge of the operation, yet
intentionally unresponsive in order to make war
Afghanistan and Iraq," Imposimato declares
in a letter published by
the Journal of 9/11 Studies.

 Ferdinando Imposimato is the Honorary President
of the Supreme Court of Italy and a former Senator
who served on the Anti-Mafia Commission in three
administrations. He is the author or co-author of 7
books on international terrorism, state corruption,
and related matters, and a Grand Officer of the
Order of Merit of the Republic of Italy.

As a former state prosecutor, Imposimato has
extensive experience in investigating high-
profile crimes, including the kidnapping and
assassination of Italian Prime Minster Aldo
Moro & the attempted assassination of Pope
John Paul II. He also worked on the Anti-
Mafia commission as a Senator, giving him a
wealth of knowledge on the inner workings
of organized crime syndicates.


Imposimato points to several facts contradicting
the official 9/11 story, including the free-fall
collapse of WTC Building 7, the report that the
CIA met with Osama Bin Laden in a Dubai hospital
in July 2001, and the overwhelming evidence of
insider trading before 9/11 that didn't lead to any
criminal charges, reports digitaljournal.com

The following is an excerpt from Imposimato’s letter
published by the Journal of 9/11 Studies on Sunday:


The reports of the National Institute of Standards
and Technology (NIST), November 20, 2005, set
forth the following conclusions:

The airplanes that struck each of the Twin Towers
caused a breach as well as an explosion evidenced
by a giant fireball. The remaining jet fuel flowed onto
the lower floors, sustaining the fires. The heat from
the fires deformed the building structures and both
towers collapsed completely from top to bottom.

Very little that was of any size remained after these
events except steel as well as aluminum fragments
and the pulverized dust from the concrete floors.


The World Trade Center 7 also collapsed–in a way that
was inconsistent with the common experience of
engineers. All three buildings collapsed completely,
but Building 7 was not hit by a plane. WTC7’s collapse
violated common experience and was unprecedented.


The NIST report does not analyze the actual nature of the
collapses.  According to experts at the Toronto Hearings
(Sept. 8-11, 2011), the collapses had features that indicate
controlled explosions. I agree with architect Richard Gage
  & engineer Jon Cole both highly experienced professionals
[from Architects & Engineers for 9/11 Truth – now
numbering 1,700 strong], who have arrived at their
conclusions through reliable tests, scientific proof,
and the visual testimony of people above suspicion,
including firefighters and victims.

The authoritative theologian David Ray Griffin has
described very precisely why the hypothesis of
controlled demolition should be considered.
Various witnesses heard bursts of explosions.


According to NIST the collapse of Building 7 was
due to fires provoked by the collapse of the twin
towers. Chemist and independent researcher Kevin
Ryan, however, has demonstrated that NIST gave
contradictory versions of the collapse of Building 7.

In a preliminary report NIST declared that WTC7
was destroyed because of fires provoked by diesel
fuel stored in the building, while in a second report
this fuel was no longer considered the cause of the
building’s collapse. Additional comments on the NIST
version of events have been made by David Chandler,
another expert witness at the Journal of 9/11 Studies
Letters, September 2012 Toronto Hearings.

Despite NIST’s claim of 3 distinct phases of collapse,
 Chandler pointed out that many available videos show
that for about two and a half seconds the acceleration
of the building cannot be distinguished from freefall.
NIST has been obliged to agree with this empirical fact
as pointed out by Chandler; now understood by everyone.


The only possibility for achieving justice is to submit the
best evidence concerning the involvement of specific
individuals in 9/11 to the Prosecutor of the International
Criminal Court and ask him to investigate according to
the articles 12, 13, 15 and 17, letters a and b, of the
Statute of the ICC, recalling the preamble of the Statute:


“Recognizing that such grave crimes threaten the
peace, security and the well being of the world,”


“Affirming that the most serious crimes of concern to
the international community as a whole must not go
unpunished and that their effective prosecution must
be ensured by taking measures at the national level
and by enhancing international cooperation, ”


“Determined to put an end to impunity for the perpetrators
of these
crimes and thus to contribute to the prosecution
of such crimes,
recalling that it is the duty of every state
to exercise its jurisdiction over
those responsible for
international crimes.
"  reports infowars.com.

More and more people from all walks of life and all
professions seem
to be questioning the “official”
narrative of what happened on 9/11.
Those who
are questioning the events of 9/11 may be moving
the radar of the corporate media from being
labeled “conspiracy
theorists” to legitimate
investigators with legitimate questions and
concerns, reports examiner.com


Theorists believe that the World Trade Center
buildings were
demolished by bombs, phone
calls from the planes were made up,
and the
former President George W. Bush secretly
profited from
the attacks, reports


The World Trade Center collapse appeared similar to a
demolition. Many speculate that the towers
were in fact blown down
with explosives placed in
selected locations. Some witnesses heard
inside the building as they attempted to escape. Many

architects & scientists maintain that plane fuel couldn't
enough heat to melt the steel frame of the
buildings that collapsed,

little girl frightens USA


Article by Finian Cunningham.

100 years ago, the assassination of Archduke
Franz Ferdinand and his wife in the
city of Sarajevo, was the fatal spark that

 ignited a geopolitical powder keg in Europe.

Within a month, all the major powers of Europe
 would be embroiled in the First World War, which
 also dragged in Russia and the US. The war would
 last for nearly five years and resulted in at least
 20 million deaths.

That catastrophe has perplexing resonances
today. One incident set off a conflagration
 back then, because it came amid simmering
rivalries among imperial powers. Another
resonance is how historians recount that, in
 the run-up to the First World War few believed
 that a war in "modern, civilized" Europe was
likely, because of the belief that diplomacy
 would prevail.

Today, we see a similar reckless goading by
 imperial powers across Europe. The US and
 its European NATO allies are embarked on a
25-year expansion towards Russia's heartland.

 The dynamic of encroachment has only sped up,
not lessened. This expansion is provocative,
 aggressive and duplicitous, because it not only
 presents a military threat to Russia, it also flies
 in the face of past commitments by the US-led
 NATO alliance not to do so, such as in the 1997
 Founding Act, signed with Moscow.

Russia has every right to feel threatened by ever-
encroaching ballistic missile systems on its borders
 that could be used in a pre-emptive nuclear strike
 by the US and its allies. That concern is heightened
 ever since Washington invoked a "first strike
 doctrine" under President George W Bush,
which Obama still retains.

Yet, provocatively, Washington dismisses Russian
 President Vladimir Putin's concerns about NATO
 expansion, as if they are the deliriums of a Soviet

The complacency of the present time towards
 the dangers of war, has disturbing echoes of
the past - on the eve of World War I. A major
factor in the present complacency is that the
 Western mainstream media are failing, woefully,
 to properly report on the gravity of the situation
 in Ukraine, and just how provocative that
 parlous situation is to Russia's vital interests.

This week saw the signing of a trade pact between
 the European Union and Petro Poroshenko, the
 declared president of Ukraine. The Western media
 have hailed it in glowing terms as "a landmark event"
 and a positive outcome of democracy in the former
 Soviet Republic. That blithe assessment invites
 dangerous ignorance and complacency.

The truth is that the signing of the EU trade pact is
 the outcome of an illegal regime-change operation in
 Ukraine fomented by Washington and its NATO allies.

 That regime change involved CIA-backed mass
 murder of civilians (the February 20 sniper shootings
 in Kiev's Maidan Square) and the overthrow of an
 elected government.

Since the illegal coup against President Viktor
Yanukovych, the Western-backed Kiev regime has
 been waging war on ethnic Russian populations
 in the east and south of the country, who refuse
 to recognize the regime as legitimate.

 Poroshenko, the billionaire oligarch who is now
 signing over the sovereign affairs of Ukraine to
 the US, NATO and the EU, was elected president
 in a farcical vote last month, where only 45% of
the electorate turned out and large sections of
the east and south did not even cast a ballot
amid a murderous "anti-terror" crackdown by
 Kiev troops and paramilitaries.

The campaign of terror by the Kiev forces against
 pro-Russian civilians was launched at the end of
 April, days after CIA chief John Brennan made a
 secret visit to the Kiev regime. Brennan briefed
the Kiev leadership, including the so-called Prime
 Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk, who only last week
used Nazi language to vow that his military forces
 would "cleanse sub-humans" from the country -
 referring to the ethnic Russian populations and
the self-defence militias they have set up in the
 Donetz and Lugansk regions.

The impostor-President Poroshenko may have
 declared a ceasefire over the past week, but
 the hostilities against civilian centres continue
 unabated. Crimes against humanity include the
 bombing of homes, churches, schools & hospitals,
 the use of White Phosphorus incendiary bombs
 and exploding bullets, as well as the shelling of
 electricity and water supplies.

Western media have largely ignored these violations
 by the "new democratic Ukrainian government", or at
 best have reported them as "unverified" or merely as
 "breaches of the ceasefire by both sides".

Western governments and media have gone into
 denial mode, refusing to acknowledge what even
the United Nations this week confirms as a massive
 displacement of over 150,000 people from eastern
 Ukraine.  Why are such numbers fleeing, if the
 violence is not also massive?

Another example of the Western cover-up over state
 terrorism in Ukraine, is the recent killing of three
journalists. Earlier this month, Russian journalist Igor
 Kornelyuk and his colleague Anton Voloshin were
 killed near Lugansk when they were hit with a mortar
 shell. Survivors of the attack said it was deliberate
 targeting by Kiev troops. Previously, Italian journalist
 Andrea Rochelli was slain near Slavyansk in another
 incident that bore the hallmarks of shoot-to-kill.

In the past week, by contrast, there was an
 outpouring of condemnation from Washington and
 other Western governments, as well as widespread
 media coverage, of the jailing of three Al Jazeera
 journalists in Egypt. Those sentences were no
 doubt a gross miscarriage of justice. But what
 about the taking of journalists' lives in Ukraine?
 Where is the Western condemnations and 
media coverage?

Western-backed regime change and genocidal
 repression in Ukraine, is a collision course of
 extreme provocation towards Russia and its
 vital interests. Yet it is presented to the
 Western public as if it is a "good news" story
 about democratic European enlargement,
 which, perversely, is being spoiled by Russian

This is a powder-keg situation in Europe, led
 by US geopolitics and its European henchmen,
 and which is wrapped up in an explosive shell
 of ignorance, by a lying Western media.

The repetition of history is not inevitable.
But the chances are increased when people
are kept in the dark about the underlying
causes of war and conflict.

China Russia reach deal

Petko Ganchev, wrote this article for Pravda.Ru.

Today it is absolutely clear that there is
a multipurpose strategic operation being
 conducted on the territory of the former
 Soviet Union. Ukraine plays a key role in
 the operation. Why Ukraine?

It's an open secret - the West has always
wanted to master the vast territories of
Russia and Eurasia, the axial space of the
Earth, with its enormous natural resources.

 To achieve this goal, there was the outer belt
 (Turkey, Pakistan, South Korea, Japan) built
 around Russia-Eurasia after World War Two.
 The inner belt (Georgia, Moldova, Lithuania,
 Latvia, Estonia) was built after the
 collapse of the USSR.

Successively, after the Cold War, almost all
East European countries - Soviet satellites -
were admitted to NATO under the condition
of their membership in the European Union.

 But the West didn't get closer to Russia's
western borders. There were 2 Russia-
friendly countries left - historically,
culturally and economically - Belarus
 and Ukraine.

Belarus is closely tied to Russia ethnically,
culturally and economically. Ukraine, with
its failed state organization was a weak link.

The reason for that is that the regions from
which Ukraine was created after World War
 II (1945), were formed by areas with very
different religious and value systems.

In his famous book "The Clash of Civilizations
and the Remaking of World Order" by Samuel P.
 Huntington, the author described Ukraine as
one of civilizational "splits," where one can
expect clashes, i.e. wars.

That's why Ukraine was chosen by the US
 as the key to implement a multi-purpose
 strategic operation.

 In the Middle East, the US has always used
 monarchies from the Middle Ages as allies -
 Saudi Arabia and Qatar. In Ukraine, the most
loyal ally of the United States was Poland.
The country was used to train "Right Sector"
 fighters and other figures from anti-Russian
 ultranationalist structures.

What are the main objectives and directions of
 this geo-strategic operation, the implementation
 of which began immediately after the US was
 forced to freeze its activities on Syria and Iran?

First and foremost, the goal is to strike a blow on
 Russia as the most active US geopolitical rival in
 the new millennium. When Ukraine leaves Russia's
 orbit, the US will implement several geostrategic

- to move air defense systems and other NATO
 systems closer to Russian borders: neutralizing
 its defense, including its nuclear capability;

- to undermine the Russian economy by cutting
 relations with the economy of Ukraine (Poroshenko
 has already ordered, following instructions from the
 US, to cease cooperation with the Russian defense

- to burden the budget of the Russian Federation with
 bigger spending to maintain refugees from Ukraine
 and substitute imports from Ukraine;

- to close Russia's gas and oil pipelines to the EU
 to thus block the inflow of foreign currency into
the Russian economy;

- to prevent creation of the Customs Union
 and the Eurasian Economic Union;

- to destabilize the political system in Russia,
 accusing its leadership of what is happening
 in Ukraine;

- to stop or minimize economic cooperation
 between Russia and the EU;

- to sow distrust between Russia and other BRICS
 countries - Brazil, India, China, South Africa.

Secondly, the U.S. plans to strike a blow on the
European Union, which, along with China, acts
 as a major competitor in the economic sphere.
The EU needs to be reminded of its secondary role.

The United States seeks to confirm the assessment
 of Russophobe Brzezinski in his book "The Grand
 Chessboard" (1997), according to which the EU
was a "U.S. protectorate."

 For the U.S. it is vitally important to strengthen the
 economic dependence of the EU in light of their
 signing the "Transatlantic Free Trade Agreement"
 to turn the EU towards the consumption of US
shale gas. In this regard, the EU is the most
developed market.

To achieve this, Ukrainian company Naftogaz (the
 largest company in Ukraine) became  the property
 of a new consortium, whose leadership includes
the son of U.S. Vice President Joe Biden and
former Polish President Kwasniewski.

At the same time, Chevron is preparing shale gas
 production in south-eastern Ukraine - in the areas
 of the towns of Slavyansk and Kramatorsk.

Chervon, directly or indirectly, through the European
 Commission, put pressure on Bulgaria, forcing the
 country to abandon the South Stream project.

 At the same time, the U.S. continues to put pressure
 on France, to make the country freeze the sale of
two Mistral helicopter carriers to Russia. France's
 largest bank PNB faces a fine of $10 billion for
 violating the financial embargo that the U.S. put
on Cuba, Sudan and Nicaragua.

 At the same time, the United States, with its
national debt of 17 trillion dollars and GDP of
14 trillion, prepares to grant NATO's Eastern
 European members $1 billion for new weapons.

Fortunately, on the "grand chessboard" of world
 civilization, the U.S. does not play against virtual
 opponents. The geo-strategy of the United States
 does not unfold like the Desert Storm Operation in
2 003. Today, the US is playing against experienced

 Russia is rising after the disgrace of the Yeltsin era,
 and the EU becomes increasingly aware of the fact
 that the only chance to survive is hidden in the
 slogan "More Europe for Europeans!"

The last elections to the European Parliament have
 confirmed the trend. Hitherto, with so many large-
scale geopolitical operations after World War II
 (Korea, Cuba, Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan, etc.),
 the US has not been able to boast considerable

Through all those wars, as George Friedman says
 in his book "The Next 100 Years," America has
 stimulated the growth of the national economy.

America was gradually and steadily evolving from
 a manufacturing economy to the economy of a
 military-industrial complex. In history, such a
 condition has always heralded the end of any

working toward very cold war


The US government is a “criminal enterprise”
 with a foreign policy that places the well-
being of Israel ahead of America’s, a political
commentator in San Antonio, Texas says.

“This is a criminal enterprise that has the support
 of both of the major political parties in the United
 States,” Mark Dankof, a broadcaster and former
US Senate candidate, says.

This criminal enterprise “principally involves
 conducting a foreign policy firstly for Israel,
 secondly for the international central banks
and thirdly for the oil and natural gas
 consortiums,” Dankof says.

There is no difference between the policies
 of the Obama and Bush administrations, he
 notes. Both “are supporting the criminal
 policies of Benjamin Netanyahu,” he adds.

Dankof dismisses as a deception the recent
 remarks by US Secretary of State John Kerry
 that the 2003 US-led invasion of Iraq was a
 serious mistake:

“This is an attempt to absolve John Kerry and
 Barack Obama of the responsibility for all the
 criminal policies that they have carried out.”

In an interview with Chinese news agency Geo
 News, Kerry acknowledged that many problems
 in the Middle East, have their roots in that war.

George W. Bush, ordered the invasion of Iraq
under a pretext --- that former Iraqi dictator,
 Saddam Hussein, possessed weapons of
 mass destruction.

 In October 2004, a CIA report revealed
 that Saddam Hussein did not possess any
weapons of mass destruction at the time
 of the invasion.

In a survey out on Wednesday 2nd June,
Quinnipiac University Polling Institute,

33% of registered voters name Obama
as the worst president since 1945.

 28% choose his predecessor, George
Bush, as the worst.

By Jim Jones

For many, myself included I suppose, the tragic
 events unfolding in Ukraine have been riveting
over the last couple of months. No need here to
 go into the sordid history of Coloured Revolutions
 and the CIA/NATO role in them; most reading this
 medium as opposed to CNN/SKY/VOA, are informed
 people and are aware of the manoeuvrings of the
 West and the associated puppet states in trying
embroil Russia in a war it doesn't want and in
extending NATO frontiers to the heart of Russia.

Missile strikes from Ukraine, for example, would be
 in Moscow in 10 minutes, leaving no reaction time
 and fits neatly within the new US policy of a "first
 Strike" nuclear capability. [As opposed to the
retaliatory strike doctrine of the last 40 years].

We all know what happened in 1961, when
 Khrushchev put Soviet Missiles into Cuba after
the US put missiles into Turkey. The US wasn't
very impressed at all. What is not well known
that Kennedy asked Khrushchev to "cut him
slack" and withdraw the missiles without
to the US' withdrawal of its missiles
from Turkey!

 The US had upped the rhetoric so much, that it
 couldn't be seen to lose face in the public arena
 - condescendingly, Khrushchev accommodated.

Hold that thought of "face saving" as we explore
 the current Ukraine Crisis.

The US/NATO pushed the EU to pressure the Ukraine
 to join the EU and swing to the West. They almost
succeeded 4 years ago with their Orange Revolution.

 But Russia had learnt a thing or two about the
 Coloured Revolutions and mounted a successful
 and embarrassing reversal of the revolution and
 installed their own man in Ukraine who was leading
 Ukraine back along the Russian brotherhood line.

Four years later, after over $5 billion in NGO funding
a huge amount of State Department scheming
CIA covert action, the US finally got a chance
 to redress the "egg on face incident" that the
Russians had made for them.

The US played a "background role" in this - preferring
 to have the EU seen as the driving force behind the
 Maidan. However, leaked phone calls, like that made
 to Cabinet Minister Ashton, which clearly identified
the role of paid mercenaries in killing both Police &
 protesters, and later, Viktoria Nuland [US State Dept]
hand-picking who will be in the Ukraine
and saying the EU can go get fucked -
did nothing to
endear the US to the EU -- it came
hard on the heels
of revelations of extensive phone
tapping of EU
leaders' phones etc. by the US.

Then we have the unsavoury influence of the Right
 Sektor in Ukraine being pushed, funded and trained
 by NATO and the US's Kerry, Nuland, John McCain,
 Mark Twain and all, were seen in public endorsing
 the very Right Sektor extremists that the German
 government was in the process of declaring as

Europe could see itself being plunged back 70 years
 with the rise of neo Nazi's, not just in Germany - but
 across Europe. [Remember Anders Behring Breivik
 and his mass killings in Norway: an ultra nationalist].

Europe also asked the question, what is the US going
 to lose over this? If Russia turns off the gas, Europe
 freezes: the economy of Europe goes down the toilet!

Already Germany is losing billions of Euros in trade
 with Russia, France has several military deals with
 Russia, the supply of Mistral Class ships for one,
 and Putin has promised follow-ons from that. Italy
 is supplying armour vehicles, many EU nations
trade with Russia - so, US, what sanctions are
to hurt you, the EU asks?

Germany has a growing discord there over the
year occupation of Germany by US forces -
see demonstrations - Yankees go home!
is realising that the US cares, not for
them, but
only for US and US businesses.

Against this background, we are witnessing the
 separation of the US/EU and a drawing closer of
 EU/Russia on common grounds & shared interests.

I was appalled: driven to tears by the criminal
of the Kyiv Junta's ex facto war crimes/
against humanity. The shelling and
bombing of
civilians [non-combatants the
Junta declares
are Terrorists]. The targeting
and destructionof
schools, kindergartens and
hospitals - with the
murder of 25 wounded in
the hospital - shot by
Junta troops!

Destruction of the means of
support of life
  - with water supplies destroyed,
installations and sanitary plants
by shelling. The shooting of women
children leaving the region for shelter in

 Crimea, by bus. The execution style killing
civilians in a town by Junta forces, who
the people up and shot them in the
back of
their heads. The use of chemical
against civilians - chlorine gas
[where is
Obama's Red Line on this?]. The
targeting of
TV reporters in the area trying
to objectively
record events. I'm sure that
I have missed some

 I cried out from the depths of despair for justice
surely Russia would intervene; surely Russia
would protect it's people like it has said it would?

And all along, that is exactly what the US has been
 saying too - telling the Ukrainian Junta to commit
 further acts and atrocities against the people who
 simply want true democracy in the East.

To help them in this, they even get them to
demonise and degrade the people there.
 Junta leaders have called the Russians in
 the East, "sub-human" - those of you as old
 as I am, will have heard that phrase before.

They are called parasites and vermin by the
 new Choco King Junta leader Poroshenko.
 Such a debasing of the population makes it
 more acceptable to murder them and commit
 atrocities against a subhuman species - not
 much higher than animals really, are they?

The provocation of Russia in this regard has been
 carefully stage managed by the US, intent as always
 to let it appear as the EU 's doing, while all the time
 ensuring that their people are the ones pulling the
 strings in Kiev - the CIA/FBI and State Department
are up
to their proverbial balls in Kiev's business.

 Don't see the EU featuring though. The US has
 pushed the warmonger Russian story all through
 Europe - putting the fear of the bogyman into all
ex Soviet states, and determined to show them
all how much they need NATO's protection.
 [In truth, the world needs to be protected from
 the US].

However, Russia has consistently demonstrated
 restraint and maturity in handling the world crisis.

 Since the failed US--led revolution in Georgia,
Russia has been seen to be taking the moral
 high ground from the US and their consistent
 lies [WMD et.al].

The lies over Georgia were exposed and eventually
 the EU came out & confirmed that Georgia started
 the war. Reluctantly, the Western media has had
admit to "errors" in reporting - all of which have
 favoured the Russian position. Remember the
 incredible piece of statesmanship from Russia
 in pulling the war rug out from under the US's
over Syrian Chemical weapons?!

Russia has quietly been cementing relationships
 in Europe - building "partnerships' with European
 countries, and is doing so in accordance with
 international law and through responsible,
mature actions.

All of this has been driving a wedge between the
 US and the EU. This hasn't gone unnoticed - the
 US cannot accept that they are not in the driving
 seat of a single seater any more. Goading and
 provoking Russia into attacking the Ukraine is
how they will demonstrate that the Russia of
 today is what they told everyone that the
USSR of old, was.

Putin has been smarter than they realised.

 Reuters reported on July 1st:

Ukrainian forces struck at pro-Russian separatist
 bases in the eastern regions with air and artillery
strikes on Tuesday, after President Poroshenko
 announced he would not renew a ceasefire, but
 go on the offensive to rid Ukraine of "parasites".

His decision quickly drew fire from Russian President
 Vladimir Putin who said Poroshenko had disregarded
 the advice of himself & German and French leaders.
 Putin said Poroshenko would now have to bear full
 responsibility for veering off the road to peace.

Poroshenko, who accuses Russia of fanning the
 conflict and allowing fighters and equipment to
 cross the border to support the rebels, then
his back on another renewal of a 10-
unilateral ceasefire after the phone talks
 involving Putin, German Chancellor Angela
 Merkel, and President Francois Hollande.

The important thing here is that Putin obtained
 consensus from France and Germany in a four-
way dialogue. This consensus was broken by
 Poroshenko, under pressure from US handlers.

 The facts are obvious. What it also shows, is
once again the US has marginalised the
EU and
shown scant regard for the EU position.

This now opens the door for Russia to reiterate its
 threat; "Putin said Moscow will continue to defend
 the interests of ethnic Russians abroad - up to 3
 million of whom live in the east of Ukraine, which
 has been in separatist ferment since April."

By obtaining consensus to a path of peace, and
 seeing it broken, Moscow now has the mandate
 to use force... IF it wants to.

The question is, does Russia want or need to?
That famous General of Guerrilla warfare, Vo

 Nguyen Giap [Incidentally, his book Peoples War,
 People's Army is worth reading] said, "we do not
 want to defeat the enemy, we simply want him to
leave our country!". In this regard, the Ukrainian
Junta cannot win the war in Novorussiya.

Firstly, they have completely lost the battle for
the hearts and minds of the people --- through
brutal atrocities they have committed.

 Their transparent attempt at a Kosovo type ethnic
 cleansing, has been seen for what it is and has
 made people more determined to "hold their
ground". Their brutality has now created a
 generational animosity, which will not be
 resolved in our life-time.

Secondly, militarily they can't succeed - every day,
Novorussiya is gaining in strength and skills. The
 skill level of Novorussiya's troops is much higher
 than those of the basic conscripted Junta forces
 and they're much more motivated than the Junta
 forces - they are fighting for their existence and
 homeland. Conventional military doctrine states
that we require a 10 to 1 advantage to press a
 successful attack against a defending enemy.

 1,000 to 1 is not enough to succeed in a Guerrilla
 war scenario. Look at the hiding the Yanks got in
 Vietnam and they poured hundreds of thousands
of troops into there, used the might of total air
superiority and naval bombardment etc, and still
 got their arses kicked. Ask them how many they
 and NATO had in Afghanistan fighting "towel
 heads"? [and still lost].

The Ukrainian Army has about 30,000 troops
 committed against 10,000 in the Novorussiya
 Army, and many Junta forces are actually
 surrendering without a fight, handing over
gear, getting on a bus and going home
with mum
who came to collect their sons.

Also, the Junta
is bankrupt. They can't even
feed their army;
people are deserting and
walking home,
because of no food or pay.

To save face: that wonderful US terminology
again; I see it is proposed that Novorussiya
become a Russian protectorate! The US is
 looking to stem the Junta's haemorrhaging.

All Russia needs to do, is open a humanitarian
 corridor into Novorussiya and maintain/police it
 and supply Novorussiya with what war materiel
 they ask for. And it can do all that with the tacit
 approval of Europe - the US having gone a bridge
 too far in Ukraine. Russia can allow the Junta to
 bleed to death here and like Georgia before; the
 US will be powerless to stop it.

The US has had it's last Tango in Europe.

Jim Jones

Urgent appeal: Message from Slavyansk

Igor Strelkov makes an urgent appeal to the
 international community as western-backed
 Ukrainian forces slaughter Russian-speaking
 citizens, strafing women and children with
 military hardware.

 Washington, Paris and London look on and
continue to support the Ukrainian government.
 A massacre is taking place, the west is
with the Devil.

Urgent Appeal by Igor Strelkov, July 4, 2014

Good day.

I would like to make a short statement with respect
 to what is happening around Slavyansk. With respect
 to what is happening here. And, well, to make an
 appeal, if you will.

Yesterday, the enemy completely surrounded
 Nikolayevka. The enemy shelled the city in the
 fiercest possible way, using all types of weapons.
 Using heavy MLRS systems, howitzers, mortars,
 tanks, APCs. The destruction is enormous.
 It is simply impossible to determine the numbers of
 casualties, because nothing works in the city now.

Our units that are in Nikolayevka at this moment
 continue the battle in complete encirclement.
We have no communications with them.

Nikolayevka has been completely cut off from
 Slavyansk. At this very moment, a large enemy
 column of armoured vehicles is moving toward
 Semyonovka from the south, along the Kharkov-
Rostov highway. At the same time, the enemy
 is continuing uninterrupted artillery shelling of
 the city and of Semyonovka.

 Yesterday, the Nikolayevka Thermal Power
Plant was destroyed to the ground and set
 on fire.

To put it bluntly, we are dealing here with
 unconcealed genocide. In other words, to break
 the resistance of the Militia, the enemy is using
all the available types of weaponry against the
 civilian population.

Naturally, seeing the destruction and the death
 of the civilian population, militiamen are starting
 to lose the will to continue fighting.

I would like to say to you that, in Slavyansk, there
 is not one Chechen, not one mercenary. There is
 not a single person here who did not come of their
 own good will. If, before, 90% of the fighters were
 local, now the ratio is 95%.

 Out of the entire garrison, there are maybe several
dozen people who came from Russia. The majority,
 the overwhelming majority are citizens of Ukraine.
Among them, the overwhelming majority are
 Donbass residents.

 These are people who consciously took up arms to
 defend their homes, their families, their Motherland.
 To defend their language and their culture. To defend
 Russia. Because these people never separated from
 her. They consider themselves Russian. They want
to live in Russia.

This right was taken from them a long time ago.
And now, when they tried to restore this right,
 Russia does not want to help them reunite with
their people, with their big Russian family.

It is difficult to understand and accept, that,
over three months (it will soon be three months
 since we arrived in Slavyansk to help the local
 population defend their rights), that, over these
 three months, no real help has arrived.

I do not claim that Russia does not help. A
 huge stream of humanitarian cargo, equipment,
uniforms, comes to us through private channels.
 But, that, which we desperately need, does not,
 at this time, arrive.

Please understand, that even if we get two tanks,
 four, even ten tanks, five-six artillery pieces, even
 if a plane flies here once, this will have no impact
 whatsoever. Over the course of the ceasefire,
 the Ukrainian army performed a full mobilization
and concentration of forces.

Over sixty heavy artillery pieces are pointed a
t Semyonovka and at Slavyansk at this time.
 At Kramatorsk. Two dozen MLRS systems,
 including Grad, Uragan and Smerch Heavy
 mortars. All of them are pointed here.

The enemy has so much ammunition - I did not
see so much in Chechnya. In our time, we did
 not have so many shells. And the entire set of
 this artillery is shelling us without a stop. The
supply columns are coming in continuously.
 They are transferring in more equipment.

Kharkov diligently repairs a dozen and a half
 armoured vehicles a day. We hit one or two
 armoured vehicles a day. No more than that.
 The enemy is able to grow its forces faster
 than it expends them. Not just faster -
 much faster.

If Russia is not able to secure an immediate
 termination of fire and the execution of a truce,
or if it does not step in with its armed forces to
 protect us, to protect the Russian people that
 reside here, who are a part of the Russian nation,
 we will be exterminated.

We will be exterminated in the course of a week,
 two weeks at most. And Slavyansk will be the
 first to be exterminated, together with its still-
numerous population. Over thirty thousand
 civilians are still left here.

I am being asked to take on the responsibility
 for their death. And for the death of the Militia
 brigade under my command. We are ready to
 fight. We are ready to die. But we do not want
to die senselessly, burying beneath the ruins
of the city of those people who believed in us.

Some believe that I am panicking, that I
am nervous. Yes, I am nervous. Every day,
my soldiers are dying. The hospitals are
 overflowing with wounded. It is very
difficult to see children without legs,
 torn apart by exploding shells.

We will continue to fight. But we
 desperately need help.

civilians being murdered by Kiev coup forces

Washington's War Crimes Spread from
 Africa and the Middle East to Ukraine

By Paul Craig Roberts

A person might think that revulsion in "the world
 community" against Washington's wanton slaughter
 of civilians in eight countries would have led to War
Crimes Tribunal warrants issued for the arrest of
presidents Clinton, Bush, Obama & many officials
 in their regimes.  But the vocal part of "the world
 community"-- the West -- has become inured to
 Washington's crimes against humanity and
doesn't bother to protest.  Indeed, many of
these governments are complicit in the US's
 crimes, and there could just as well be arrest
 warrants for members of European governments.

The one exception is Russia. The Ministry of Foreign
 Affairs of the Russian Federation has published a
 White Book on violations of human rights and the
 rule of law in Ukraine.  Propagandized Americans
 think that all the violations in Ukraine are made
by Russians.  The White Book carefully and
 accurately documents reported violations that
 occurred in Ukraine for four months from
 December 2013 through March 2014.

The White Book is available here:


  You will not hear much or anything about it from
presstitute US media, & it's unlikely to receive
 much coverage in Europe. The facts are so greatly
 at odds with the West's position, that the White
 Book is a huge embarrassment to the West.

The slaughter of Ukrainians on Washington's orders
 by Washington's stooge government in Kiev, has
 worsened considerably in the past three months,
 producing more than 100,000 Ukrainian refugees
 fleeing into Russia for protection from strikes
 against civilian housing, from the air, artillery,
 and tanks. 

Every effort by Russia's government to involve
 Washington, the European Union, and Kiev in
 negotiations to find a peaceful settlement,
has failed.

Washington is not interested in a settlement.
 Disturbed by its NATO vassals' dependence
 on Russian energy and the growing economic
 relationships between Russia and Europe,
 Washington is at work through its Kiev proxy
 murdering citizens in eastern and southern
parts of present-day Ukraine that once were
 part of Russia.

 Washington has declared these civilians to be
 "terrorists" and is trying to force Russia to
 intervene militarily in order to protect them.

  Russia's protective intervention would then
 be denounced by Washington as "invasion
 and annexation."  Washington would use
this propaganda, which would blare from the
 Western media, to pressure Europe to support
Washington's sanctions against Russia. The
 sanctions would then effectively destroy the
existing economic relationships between
 Russia and Europe.

Washington hasn't had success in imposing
 sanctions, because, although Washington's
 European vassals, such as Merkel, are willing,
 business interests in Germany, France, and
 Italy stand opposed.

 Washington is hoping that by forcing Russia
 to act, Washington can sufficiently demonize
Russia and silence the European business
 interests  with propaganda.

To counter Washington's ploy, Putin had Russia's
 Duma rescind his authority to send Russian forces
 into Ukraine.  Unlike US' presidents Clinton, Bush,
 and Obama, Putin does not claim the authority to
use military forces without permission from the

Washington's response to Putin's stand down is
 to increase the slaughter of civilians, all the while
 denying that any such slaughter is occurring.

  Washington is determined not to acknowledge
 the existence of the slaughter for which it is
 responsible, although everyone knows that
 Kiev would not dare to take on Russia
 without Washington's backing.

Putin's bet is that European business interests
 will prevail over Washington's European lap dogs.

 This is a hopeful and optimistic bet, but Washington
 is already at work to threaten and undermine the
 resistance of European business interests. Using
 concocted charges, Washington has stolen $9
from France's biggest bank --- for doing
business with
countries disapproved of by

 This was Washington's warning to European
 business to comply with Washington's sanctions.
Washington even told France that the fine
would be rescinded or reduced if France broke
 its contract with Russia to supply 2 helicopter
 carriers.  Other such moves against European
 businesses are in the works. The purpose is
to intimidate European businesses from
 opposing sanctions against Russia.

Washington's arrogance that Washington
can decide with whom a French bank can
do business is astonishing.  It is even more
astonishing that France and the bank would
 accept such arrogance and infringements
France's sovereignty.

 France's acceptance of Washington's hegemony
 shows that one risk in Putin's bet is that the bet
 assumes that European business interests can
 prevail over Washington's strategic interests. 

Another risk in Putin's bet is that by standing down
 and tolerating Washington's slaughter of civilians,
 Putin is becoming complicit in Washington's crimes
 against humanity. The longer the slaughter goes on,
 the more complicit Russia's government becomes.

 Moreover, the passage of time allows Kiev to
 increase its forces and NATO to supply these
 forces with more deadly weapons. A Russian
 intervention, which previously would have met
 with easy success, becomes more costly and
more drawn out as Kiev's forces increase.

Washington's puppet in Kiev makes it clear
--- that he is not going to accommodate any
Russian interests or any opposition of the
provinces, to the radical anti-
Russian policies
of Washington's stooge

 As Washington acknowledges no responsibility
 whatsoever for the situation, how long can Putin
 wait for Merkel or Hollande to break ranks with

Putin's alternative is to come to the defense of the
 Ukrainians who are being attacked. Putin could
 accept the requests of the rebellious provinces
 to rejoin Russia, as he did with Crimea,  declare
  Washington's stooge, Petro Poroshenko, to be a
war criminal and issue a warrant for his arrest,
and send in the Russian military to face down
 the forces sent by Kiev.

Outside the West, this would establish Putin as
 a defender of human rights. Inside the West, it
would make it completely clear to Washington's
 European vassals that the consequence of their
 alignment with Washington is that they will be
drawn into a war with Russia and, likely, also
with China.  Europeans have nothing to gain
 from these wars.

Sooner than later Putin needs to realize that
 his reasonableness is not reciprocated by
 Washington. Washington is taking advantage
 of Putin's reasonableness, and Washington
is pushing Russia harder. 

Putin has done what he can to avoid conflict.
 Now he needs to do the right thing, as he did
 in Georgia and Crimea.

Paul Craig Roberts

Donetsk residents call on Russia

Guilt by insinuation: How
American propaganda works

By Paul Craig Roberts

Why hasn't Washington joined Russian President
 Putin in calling for an objective, non-politicized
 international investigation by experts of the
 case of the Malaysian jetliner? 

The Russian government continues to release facts,
 including satellite photos showing the presence of
 Ukrainian Buk anti-aircraft missiles in locations from
 which the airliner could have been brought down by
 the missile system, and documentation that a
 Ukrainian SU-25 fighter jet rapidly approached the
 Malaysian airliner prior to its downing.

The head of the Operations Directorate of Russian
 military headquarters said at a Moscow press
 conference on July 21st, that the presence of the
 Ukrainian military jet is confirmed by the Rostov
 monitoring centre.

The Russian Defense Ministry pointed out that, at
the moment of destruction of MH-17 an American
 satellite was flying over the area. The Russian
 government urges Washington to make available
 the photos and data captured by the satellite.

President Putin has repeatedly stressed that
the investigation of MH-17, requires "a fully
 representative group of experts to be
working at the site under the guidance of
 the International Civil Aviation Organization

  Putin's call for an independent expert examination
 by ICAO does not sound like a person with anything
 to hide.

Turning to Washington Putin stated: "In the
 meantime, no one (not even the "exceptional
 nation") has the right to use this tragedy to
 achieve their narrowly selfish political goals." 

Putin reminded Washington: "We repeatedly
 called upon all conflicting sides to stop the
 bloodshed immediately and to sit down at
 the negotiating table. I can say with
 confidence that if military operations
 were not resumed [by Kiev] on June 28
 in eastern Ukraine, this tragedy would
not have happened."

What is the American response?

Lies and insinuations.

On July 20, the US Secretary of State, John
Kerry confirmed that pro-Russian separatists
were involved in the downing of the Malaysian
airliner and said that itwas "pretty clear" that
 Russia was involved. Here are Kerry's words:

 "It's pretty clear that this is a system that
was transferred from Russia into the hands
 of separatists. We know with confidence,
with confidence, that the Ukrainians did not
 have such a system anywhere near the
vicinity at that point and time, so it obviously
 points a very clear finger at the separatists."

Kerry's statement is just another of the endless
 lies told by US secretaries of state in the 21st
 century.  Who can forget Colin Powell's package
of lies delivered to the UN about Saddam
Hussein's "weapons of mass destruction"
or Kerry's lie repeated endlessly that Assad
"used chemical weapons against his own
people" or the endless lies about "Iranian

Remember that Kerry on a number of occasions
 stated that the US had proof that Assad crossed
 the "red line" by using chemical weapons.

 However, Kerry was never able to back up
 his statements with evidence.  The US had
 no evidence to give the British prime minister
whose effort to have Parliament approve
Britain's participation with Washington in a
 military attack on Syria was voted down.
 Parliament told the prime minister, "no
evidence, no war."

Again here is Kerry declaring "confidence"
 in statements that are directly contradicted
 by the Russian satellite photos and endless
 eye witnesses on the ground. 

Why doesn't Washington release its photos
 from its satellite?

The answer is for the same reason that Washington
 will not release all the videos it confiscated and
 that it claims prove that a hijacked 9/11 airliner
hit the Pentagon.  The videos do not support
 Washington's claim, and the US satellite
photos do not support Kerry's claim.

The UN weapons inspectors on the ground in
Iraq reported that Iraq had no weapons of
mass destruction.  However, the fact did not
 support Washington's propaganda and was
 ignored. Washington started a highly
destructive war, based on nothing but
Washington's intentional lie.

The International Atomic Energy Commission's
 inspectors on the ground in Iran and all 16 US
 intelligence agencies reported that Iran had
no nuclear weapons program. However, the
was inconsistent with Washington's
and was ignored by both the US
and the presstitute media.

We are witnessing the same thing right
now with the assertions, in the absence
 of evidence, that Russia is responsible
 for the downing of the Malaysian airliner.

Not every member of the US government
is as reckless as Kerry and John McCain.
In place of direct lies, many US officials
 use insinuations.

US Senator Diane Feinstein is the perfect
 example.  Interviewed on the presstitute
 TV station CNN, Feinstein said: "The issue
 is where is Putin?  I would say, 'Putin, you
 have to man up. You should talk to the
 world. You should say, if this is a mistake,
 which I hope it was, say it.'"

Putin has been talking to the world nonstop,
 calling for an expert non-politicized
and Feinstein is asking Putin
why he is hiding
behind silence.  We know
you did it, Feinstein
insinuates, so just tell
us whether you meant
to, or whether it
was an accident.

The way the entire Western news cycle was
 orchestrated with blame instantly being placed
 on Russia long in advance of real information
 suggests that the downing of the airliner was
 a Washington operation.  It is, of course,
 possible that the well-trained presstitute media
 needed no orchestration from Washington in
 order to lay the blame on Russia.  On the other
 hand, some of the news performances seem too
 scripted not to have been prepared in advance. 

We also have the advanced preparation of the
 youtube video that purports to show a Russian
 general and Ukrainian separatists discussing
 having mistakenly downed a civilian airliner.

 As I pointed out earlier, this video is twice damned.
  It was ready in advance and, by implicating the
 Russian military, it overlooked that the Russian
 military can tell the difference between a civilian
 airliner and a military airplane. The existence of
 the video itself implies that there was a plot to
 down the airliner and blame Russia.

I have seen reports that the Russian anti-aircraft
 missile system, as a safety device, is capable
 of contacting aircraft transponders in order to
 verify the type of aircraft.  If the reports are
correct and if the transponders from MH-17
 are found, they might record the contact.

I have seen reports that Ukrainian air control
 changed the route of MH-17 and directed it to
 fly over the conflict area.  The transponders
 should also indicate whetherthis is correct.

  If so, there clearly is at least circumstantial
 evidence that this was anintentional act on
 the part of Kiev, an act which would have
 required Washington's blessing.

There are other reports that there is a divergence
 between the Ukrainian military and the unofficial
 militias formed by the right-wing Ukrainian
 extremists who apparently were the first to attack
 the separatists.  It is possible that Washington
 used the extremists to plot the airliner's destruction
 in order to blame Russia and use the accusations
 to pressure the EU to go along with Washington's
 unilateral sanctions against Russia. We do know
that Washington is desperate to break up the
 growing economic and political ties between
 Russia and Europe. 

If it was a plot to down an airliner, any safety device
 on the missile system could have been turned off,
so as to give no warning, or leave any telltale sign.
  That could be the reason a Ukrainian fighter was
 sent to inspect the airliner.  Possibly the real
 target was Putin's airliner and incompetence in
 implementing the plot resulted in the destruction
of a civilian airliner.

As there are a number of possible explanations,
let's keep open minds and resist Washington's
 propaganda until facts and evidence are in.

 At the very least, Washington is guilty of using
 the incident to blame Russia in advance of the
 evidence. All Washington has shown us so far
 is accusations and insinuations.  If that is all
 Washington continues to show us, we will
know where the blame resides.

In the meantime, remember the story of the boy
 who cried "wolf!"  He lied so many times that
 when the wolf did come, no one believed him.
 Will this be Washington's ultimate fate?

Instead of declaring war on Iraq, Afghanistan,
 Libya, Somalia, and Syria, why did Washington
 hide behind lies?  If Washington wants war with
 Iran, Russia, and China, why not simply declare

The reason that the US Constitution requires war
 to begin with a declaration of war by Congress is
 to prevent the executive branch from orchestrating
 wars, in order to further hidden agendas.

 By abdicating its constitutional responsibility, the
 US Congress is complicit in the executive branch's
 war crimes.  By approving Israel's premeditated
 murder of Palestinians, the US government is
 complicit in Israel's war crimes.

Ask yourself this question: Would the world be
 a safer place, with less death, destruction and
 displaced peoples, and more truth and justice,
 if the United States and Israel did not exist? 

Paul Craig Roberts

The video above shows a mob of about
50 men in Kiev, attacking one of the
few news outlets left which Kiev does
not control. A legal case has dragged
on for months, threatening its closure.

This week, a Kiev interior official said
"this is the last peaceful attempt" to
resolve the stand off - now this -

The US and UK say that the US-backed
Kiev coup, was a "people's revolution"...

we say it's fascism.



Death toll in Gaza rises to 701: health ministry

The Palestinian Health Ministry says early
on Thursday that 6 Palestinians have been
 killed by Israeli airstrikes in the southern
Gaza Strip town of Khan Younis.

The death toll of the Israeli offensive which
started on July 8th, has risen now to 701,
the health ministry spokesperson, Ashraf
al-Qedra says, adding that 4,500 others
 have been injured, so far.

Israel admits to having lost four civilians
and 28 soldiers so far. Efforts to end the
fighting between Israel and Palestinian
 factions in Gaza are going on unabated.
 But all efforts have yielded no results,
 so far.


UN Chief Again Urges Immediate
 End to Gaza Violence

UN chief Ban Ki-moon repeats his call for
 'Israel' and Hamas to end the violence.

"I am standing here with very heavy heart.
 My message has always been consistent
and strong, this violence must stop now,"
Ban tells a joint news conference with
Jordan's Foreign Minister, Nasser Judeh.

"Everyone should work together to bring
this violence to an immediate end. They
must stop now. Military solutions do not
provide sustainable solutions."


Palestine fighters kill 9 more Israeli forces: Hamas

Palestinian resistance forces say they have killed
 nine more Israeli soldiers --- in retaliatory attacks
 against Israel’s invasion of the besieged Gaza Strip.

On Wednesday, the Israeli military acknowledged
 three of the deaths in battles with Hamas fighters
 in Khan Yunis in southern Gaza earlier, putting
the Israeli military death toll at 32.

However, the Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades, the
 military wing of Hamas, says 9 were killed there,
 meaning that at least 60 Israeli soldiers have
been killed so far.

It adds that their fighters destroyed a Merkava
 Mark IV tank in battles and fired rockets on Tel
Aviv Metropolitan Area (Gush Dan), Shefela,
Ashkelon, Palmachim, Bnei Darom, Ashdod,
and Lod.

Code red sirens went off in Rehovot and in Beit
 Shemesh, near East al-Quds (Jerusalem).

According to Israel's media, the Iron Dome
 intercepted five rockets fired from Gaza.

Since July the 8th, Israeli warplanes have been
 hitting numerous sites in the Gaza Strip, some
demolishing houses and burying families in the

Latest reports say Palestinian resistance forces
 continue to inflict heavy losses on Israel's army
 in retaliation for its onslaught on the Gaza Strip.


Israel's war machine continues
 to relentlessly massacre Gazans
 The Israeli war machine continues to target
the besieged Gaza Strip from air
, land and
sea, pushing the Palestinian dead to 655.

Palestinian officials say on Wednesday that
 new attacks have killed at least two dozen
 Palestinians, including several children.

Medics say at least 150 others have also
been injured in Israel's ongoing onslaught
 on the tiny coastal enclave.

Sources say nearly a dozen of victims were
 killed in tank shelling in the southern town
 of Khan Yunis.

Latest reports say Israeli jets have pounded
 multiple sites across the impoverished region,
 including a mosque and the enclave's sole
 power plant.

Local residents say at least one person was
 killed and dozens more wounded near the
 targeted mosque.

Israel has continued its airstrikes on the
Gaza Strip for the 16th straight day

According to figures provided by emergency
services, the total number of people killed
since the Israeli offensive on July 8 stands
 at nearly 655. More than 4,200 people have
 been injured in the attacks.

Israel's military admits that over 400 of
 those killed were civilians, including
women and children.

The Chief Rabbi of the West Bank settlement
 of Kiryat Arba has issued a ruling that will
 "allow" the killing of civilians in wartime.

Rabbi Dov Lior claims it is permissible to
 fiercely attack what he describes as the
 enemy population, even if this means
hurting or taking, innocent lives.

The ruling reads that the army is allowed
to even
order the destruction of the whole
area, to avoid the Israeli people

The United Nations says Israel's military
 actions could well amount to war crimes.


Two Ukrainian military jets shot down over East
Kiev says anti-fascist forces have shot down two
 of Kiev's jet fighters in the country’s restive east,
 where government forces are holding military
 operations against the anti-coup population.

Oleksiy Dmytrashkivsky, a Ukrainian military
 spokesperson, says 2
of Kiev's Sukhoi Su-25
 fighter jets, were shot down on Wednesday.

Anti-coup forces confirm this with a video
posted online. The video allegedly shows
the wreckage after, of one of the planes.

Kiev gives contradictory information on
where the jets were downed.

Dmytrashkivsky says the jets were downed
 25 kilometers (16 miles) from the crash site
 of the Malaysian flight MH17, and that the
 fate of the two pilots is "unknown".

But another Kiev military spokesperson
 declares that the aircraft was hit south
of the Lugansk region and that the two
pilots managed to bail out.

The downing of the two jets comes days
 after the MH17 was shot down over the
volatile Donetsk region, while en route
from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur, with
all 298 passengers and crew, killed.

Kiev & Western powers accuse anti-fascist
 forces of downing the passenger plane, by
firing a surface-to-air missile at the aircraft.

But militias in eastern Ukraine have denied
 the accusation and blame Kiev for shooting
 down the plane. Some witnesses say they
 saw the passenger plane being attacked
 by a Ukrainian army plane.


Zionist Massacres in Gaza Continue:
Death Toll Reaches 631

The death toll in Gaza reached 631 Palestinian
 martyrs and the wounded numbered over 3750
 on Tuesday, as emergency teams pulled dead
 bodies from the rubble of homes destroyed by
 Israeli strikes on the 16th day of the assault,
 Maan news agency reports.

The latest martyrs, who are as yet unidentified,
 died in the Tuffah neighborhood of Gaza City as
a result of Israeli artillery shelling, the health
 ministry's spokesperson Ashraf al-Qidra says.

He had previously announced the death of 22-
year-old Mahmoud Salim Mustafa Daraj, who
 succumbed to his wounds in Jabalia refugee
 camp in the northern Gaza Strip.

The deaths take the number of Palestinians
killed by Israel's occupation army, Tuesday,
 to 31.

Palestinian medical sources earlier announced
 the death of Ahmad Abu Seido, by Israel shelling
 a park in eastern Gaza City.

Rescue teams removed the body of a man from
 rubble, in Shujaiyya neighborhood.

Al-Qidra earlier announced another martyr as
a four-year-old girl, Muna Rami al-Kharawt, in
 the northern Gaza Strip.

The bodies of two women were also removed
 from the debris of their homes in the Zaytoun
 neighborhood of Gaza City, al-Qidra said.

He identified the two martyrs as 70-year-old
Fatima Hasan Azzam & 50-year-old Maryam
 Hasan Azzam.

Additionally, emergency teams pulled the
body of Muhammad al-Hindi from out of a
 bombed building in Tal al-Hawa, south Gaza.

Earlier on Tuesday, dozens of Palestinians
 were killed, after Israeli airstrikes and
artillery shells hit their homes.


More Airlines Suspend Flights to ’Israel’

Major European carriers are following their
US counterparts - suspending flights to the
 Zionist entity over security concerns - as
 the Israeli aggression continues on Gaza.

Air France says it is suspending services to
Ben Gurion International Airport until further
notice and Germany's Lufthansa says it is
halting flights for 36 hours.

Lufthansa says the step, which also affects its
 subsidiaries Austrian Airlines, Germanwings
 and Swiss, is being taken "for the security of
the passengers and crews" in the "unstable

The German carrier says it operated up to 10
 daily flights to Tel Aviv from Berlin, Frankfurt,
 Munich, Vienna and Zurich.

Affected passengers can choose to either
be reimbursed or exchange their tickets,
 it says.

Air France says the move will affect its three
 daily flights to Tel Aviv from Paris's Charles
de Gaulle airport, as well as the three flights
 per week from Marseille and the four flights
 per week, from Nice.

Brussels Airlines has cancelled one flight late
 on Tuesday and three flights on Wednesday.

Earlier US Delta announced that it had diverted
 a flight bound for Tel Aviv to Paris after "reports
 of a rocket or associated debris near the airport
 in Tel Aviv."

Other major US carriers US Airways and United
 Airlines said they were also cancelling their
services to Ben Gurion airport.


              Putin Rules Out Destabilization in Russia               
 President Vladimir Putin today rules out
 any destabilization in Russia, or attempts
 to create chaos inside the country, in a
similar way to those implemented in
 other regions of the world.

In a extraordinary session of the Security
Council, President Putin was confident
 that destabilization scenes, known as
"colour revolutions," will not work in
the Russian Federation.

However, Putin admitted that there are attempts
 to erode and heat up the internal situation from
 abroad, in a similar way to other countries, and
 he considers these actions as unacceptable,
 and harmful to the world's order.

The language of ultimatums & unilateral sanctions
 is frequently heard towards "awkward" countries
 and regimes which carry out independent policies
 or just defend their interests, stressed Putin.

The Russian president warned that destabilization
 plans and coup d'etats, funded and sponsored
from abroad, are carried out against those nations.

Putin said it is incomprehensible that some
 nations use their internal problems as a
pretext to destroy other nations, as seen
now, in various regions of the world.

Putin deplored that - apart from that - some
 countries also resort to using radical forces:
 nationalists, fundamentalists, or just fascists,
 as happened in the post-soviet period, and
is now happening in Ukraine.

As a result of such coups, radical nationalist –
or simply neo-fascist, fundamentalist forces –
come to power, which is what happened in
Ukraine, Putin said.

"Yes, after the coup, elections were held, but
for some reason, again, those who funded or
carried out the coup became the heads of
state. The current authorities are using force,
trying to silence the part of the population
that disagrees with this development," Putin
noted, with regret.

The international community has been calling
 on Russia to use its influence on the eastern
 anti-government militia to cooperate in the
 resolution of the crisis.

“We of course will do everything in our power
 but that is not nearly enough,” the president
stated at the meeting.

Putin believes the West must appeal to Kiev
 to honour its ceasefire pledge.

Putin highlighted that Kiev should not fuel the
 conflict, citing Tuesday’s incident when “the
 Ukrainian Armed Forces attacked Donetsk
 with their tanks” as the local militia were
handing the black box of the crashed MH17
 over to experts.

“Tanks broke through to the train station and
opened fire at it. The international experts
there couldn't even look out of the windows,”
said the Russian head of state. “It’s not like
 the rebels are shooting at themselves.”

The Russian leader called for joint work
to solve all those internal problems that
endanger the Russian Federation's
unity, and for a rapid stiffening of Russia's
military defence
"particularly in Crimea",
against NATO's eastward aggressive
missile placements and the build-up of
NATO's air and naval forces nearby.

"Our strength", he declared, "is that
we do not belong to any military
organisations that can take away
our ability to be independent."


        Joko Widodo Wins Indonesia Presidential Elections

 The candidate of the Indonesian Democratic Party
 of Struggle (PDI-P), and former Jakarta governor,
Joko Widodo, won the presidential elections in
 Indonesia, with 53% of the votes, the National
 Commission states today.

The definitive count, cited by the website
Channel News Asia, came after Widodo's
adversary, Prabowo Subianto, rejected
the election result, and accused the
winner of committing massive fraud.

According to the official vote recount,
won 53%, followed by 46% for
his opponent,
the former General
Subianto, candidate for the
Indonesian Movement Party.


Palestinian resistance fighters have killed
40+ Israeli soldiers, since Tel Aviv began
 its offensive on the besieged Gaza Strip.

Al-Qassam Brigades, military wing of Hamas,
 says its forces killed 15 more Israeli forces
 in eastern Gaza City, on Monday alone.

Palestinian fighters also targeted an Israeli
 Merkava-4 tank in the east of Gaza City on
 the same day.

Hamas also fired dozens of retaliatory rockets
 into Israel. Warning sirens have sounded in
 Tel Aviv, Yavne, Gadara, Ashkelon, Ashdod,
and many other places.

Top Hamas leader in Gaza, Ismail Haniyeh,
says the beseiged Gaza Strip will become
"a grave-yard for Israeli soldiers" who have
 been committing criminal acts against the
 Palestinians in the blockaded enclave, for
 over two weeks.

The Palestinian death toll is now 600 -
from 14 days of Israeli attacks. Over
3,000 Palestinians have been injured
 in the onslaught.

Anti-Israeli rallies are being held worldwide
 to condemn Tel Aviv's ongoing atrocities
against Palestinians and to urge an end to
the bloodshed in Gaza.

A group of US demonstrators, joined by anti-
Zionists, has gathered in front of the White
 House to demand that Tel Aviv’s escalating
 ground and aerial offensives stop.

Similar rallies have been held in the Netherlands,
 Austria, Chile, Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey, the UK,
 Morocco, Bolivia, and Australia, among others.



The resolution was supported by all
15 members of the Security Council,
 including Russia.

The resolution calls for an immediate end
to all armed hostilities in the crash area
and urges the local militia to secure the
 crash site & give the Special Monitoring
Mission of the OSCE, access to it.

It also calls for the bringing to justice of
all persons responsible for the accident.

The UN resolution condemns in the strongest
 possible terms, the actions that caused the
 plane to be shot down, & calls for a thorough
& independent investigation of the accident,
 in accordance with international civil aviation


Ukraine's army launches massive
operation on Donetsk

The western part of the city was
from 4am, local time.

Kiev's armored vehicles and tanks were
trying to break through to a train station
 in the city of Donetsk, Deputy PM of the
self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic,
Andrei Purgin, said on Monday.

“The tank column is trying to break out from
 the local railway station to the local airport.
 The gunfire is very intensive, blasts are heard
loudly even in the centre of the city,” he said.

The western part of the city had been shelled
since 4am local time (2am UTC) on Monday,
using Grad multiple launch rocket systems,
local residents told ITAR-TASS. Heavy weapons
 were being used and loud explosions, heard.

Ukrainian warplanes delivered an air strike by
 unguided rocket projectiles at the
Donetsk city
railway station  on Monday morning. Six rockets
 were fired. Railway tracks & a locomotive, were
 damaged in the projectile blasts. The market-
place was set on fire. The mayor’s office noted
that the bus station is closed and that car traffic
is now restricted.

Defense Minister of Donetsk People’s Republic,
 Igor Strelkov, said that “Ukrainian army units
had broken into the settlement of Avdiivka and
 were moving to the railway station from there.”

“At the same time our positions are under
attack near Peski, Karlivka and Netailove,”
 he said, adding that “Tanks and marines on
armored infantry assault vehicles are being
used, with huge support from artillery guns.”

It was reported earlier that Donetsk militias
 were fighting with Ukrainian army units near
 the missile units positions outside Donetsk.


Israel tanks, jets continue pounding Gaza

'IIsraeli tanks and warplanes continued to pound
 the Gaza Strip for the 14th day, on Monday, with
the death toll among Palestinians rising to 508.

Ashraf al-Kidra, a Gaza Health Ministry official,
 said on Monday that 20 bodies were retrieved
 at a home destroyed in an overnight airstrike
 in Khan Younis.

Israeli tanks also opened fire on a home in the
 southern part of the Gaza Strip, killing at least
10 people, including a 9-month-old baby girl,
Kidra added.

Sunday was the bloodiest day of the two-week
 Israeli war, as 150+ Palestinians were killed,
including 70 people who were massacred in
Shejaiya neighborhood.

The Israeli military said the regime's forces
 killed at least 10 resistance fighters, who
tunneled into southern Israel to attack it.

It also said that two squads were detected
 “infiltrating through two tunnels from the
northern Gaza Strip,” and that an Israeli
 aircraft targeted one squad, as soldiers
 engaged in a gun battle with the other.

Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades, the military
wing of Hamas, claims responsibility for
the attack, saying that it conducted “an
operation behind enemy lines in response
to the massacre in Shejaiya.”

The UN Security Council has held an
emergency meeting, expressing its
“serious concern”, about the growing
 number of fatalities in Gaza, and calls
 for an immediate end to the conflict.

US President Barack Obama has also
called Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin
 Netanyahu, echoing calls for an
“immediate ceasefire.”

83,000 Palestinians have taken shelter
 in 60 schools across the enclave, run by
 the UN agency for Palestinian refugees,



Scores of Palestinians and Israeli soldiers were
 killed on Sunday as hostilities continued in Gaza.

 Both sides earlier agreed to a brief ceasefire
 to allow medics to reach those wounded by
 Israeli shells.

The 87 Palestinians killed on Sunday, is the
 heaviest loss since Israel launched its war
 on the Palestinian territory, on July 8th.

The brief ceasefire earlier in the day, was
broken after just an hour, after shots were
fired in Gaza.

“The agreement to implement a ceasefire was
 ended because of Hamas who started firing
 at our soldiers. We had to answer back,”
said an Israeli army source.

Hamas has yet to comment on the Israeli
 allegations that it breached the ceasefire.

The death toll is condemned by the Arab League
 who described Israeli attacks on Gaza on Sunday
 as a “war crime” against Palestinian civilians.

Over 400 Palestinians have been killed in
 Israel’s operation Protective Edge, the
Palestinian Ministry of Health said Sunday.

 13 Israeli soldiers were killed on Saturday night
 and early Sunday in several incidents across
 the Gaza strip, said Haaretz.

During the ceasefire, Gaza rescue services
 recovered 50 Palestinian bodies from Shejaia
 neighbourhood in the east of Gaza City.

Gaza's Health Ministry said the dead included
 17 children and 14 women and that hundreds
 of wounded were being treated.

 The Rafah crossing has been opened, but
only for use in 'humanitarian emergencies'.

According to Haaretz, Israeli Defense Forces
 also announced the setting up a field hospital
 near the Erez Crossing at the northern end of
the Gaza strip, to treat wounded Palestinians.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said
 Sunday that Israel will take "whatever action is
 necessary" to halt Hamas' cross-border rocket
 attacks from Gaza and restore calm, but insists
 his forces are doing their best to avoid civilian
 casualties there.

"We try to target military targets and unfortunately
 there are civilian casualties, which we regret and
 we don't seek," Netanyahu told CNN, shortly after
 an Israeli attack on a Gaza neighbourhood killed
 at least 89 Palestinians.

He accused Hamas of deliberately targeting
Israeli civilians and of using Gaza residents
 as "human shields." Asked how long it would
 take Israel to complete an operation it says
 is meant to destroy Hamas weapons tunnels,
Netanyahu said it is being done "fairly
quickly," but gave no time frame.


Qatar ready to host truce talks

Doha announced it was hosting a meeting
 between Palestinian President Abbas, and
UN Sec. General, Ban Ki-moon, on Sunday,
 to try and push for an end to fighting in the
Gaza strip, said a senior source from Qatar.

The session took place in Doha and was
chaired by the Gulf state's emir, Sheikh
 Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, who's been
acting as a "
communication channel"
between Hamas and the international
community, said the source.

"Qatar has presented Hamas' demands to the
 international community. The list has been
 presented to France and to the UN. The talks
  were to further negotiate these conditions."

Hamas has rejected Egyptian efforts to end
 the fighting, saying any deal must include an
 end to a blockade of the coastal area and a
 recommitment to a ceasefire reached in an
 eight-day war there, in 2012.

Their conditions include the release of prisoners
 re-arrested since an exchange deal with Israel,
 the opening of Gaza-Israel border crossings and
 an end to the Israeli blockade on Gaza's seaport,
 a Hamas source in Doha says.

"In general, Israel must end all forms of aggression
 and attacks, end the blockade of Gaza and remove
 the actions that resulted from its military offensive
 in the West Bank after June 12th," Sami Abu Zuhri,
 Hamas spokesperson, tells Reuters.

"We want the rights of our people. Palestinians
 on the ground are supporting us and we will get
 them back their rights," says the source.

An IDF spokesperson says:

“We do not target in any way or form, civilians -
we target Hamas terrorists. The idea of the
ongoing operation is to secure safety and
 security for the state of Israel.

 “Hamas decided to have an onslaught against
 the state of Israel and indeed even when we held
 our stations yesterday for 6 hours, they continued
 to bombard Israel indiscriminately and we were
 left, basically, with no alternative,” he says.


We terminated 32 Israel troops: Hamas

Al-Qassam Brigades, the military wing of Hamas,
 says Palestinian resistance fighters have killed
 at least 32 Israeli soldiers since Saturday.

Hamas military sources say scores of Israeli soldiers
 injured in the clashes with Palestinian fighters have
 been transferred to hospital. A senior Israeli military
 commander is said to be among them.

However, the Israeli military has confirmed
only seven deaths.

The Palestinian fighters also say they targeted
 six Israeli tanks with rocket-propelled grenades.

Palestinian retaliatory rockets have hit several
 areas in Israel, including a Tel Aviv neighborhood.

More retaliatory rockets have been fired out of the
 Gaza Strip deep into Israel. Warning sirens have
 wailed in several Israeli cities including Tel Aviv,
 Eshkol and Be'er Sheva.

Over 1700 projectiles have been launched from Gaza
 in less than two weeks. Hamas says it is ready for a
 prolonged conflict and is continuously stocking up
 its weapons.

Political analysts say the war on Gaza is taking its
 toll on the Israeli army, with Palestinian fighters
 stepping up their retaliatory attacks.

The developments come as bloodshed continues
 in the besieged Gaza Strip for the 13th straight
day, with no let-up to the Israeli onslaught by air,
 sea and land.

Israeli tanks & artillery continue to shell northern
and eastern Gaza, while fighter jets keep pounding
away at the densely-populated strip.

Medics are now warning of a serious
humanitarian crisis, as clinics are
 running out of basic medical supplies.

Senior Hamas leader Mahmoud al-Zahar
is calling for an international probe into
Israel's ongoing massacres in Gaza.   


Malaysian Experts Arrive in Kiev
 for Plane Disaster Investigation

About 130 Malaysian experts have arrived
 in Kiev to help with the investigation of the
 Boeing-777 disaster, which left 298 dead,
 when crashing in Donetsk region, where
fierce combat is ongoing.



 "Our goal is Hamas' infrastructure in the north,
 south, and east Gaza," says a military spokes-
person, which itself reveals that this ground
 offensive is leading to an Israeli reoccupation
 of Palestinian territory in Gaza.

Another sign of Israeli intentions is the call up
of another 18,000 reservists to join the Army,
 which brings the number of troops in position
to control Palestine's population, to 65,000.

Meetings now trying to find agreement for a
ceasefire seem trivial, as Israel's declared
intention is to keep its military presence
in Gaza, for an indeterminate


One should not tell Russia what to do;
it is necessary to sit down to talks
 — Lavrov

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov says in
 an interview with Russia 24 TV news channel,
 that it is unnecessary to tell Russia what it is
 supposed to do and that it will be much more
 expedient to sit down to talks.

“The most important thing, as Russian President
 Vladimir Putin reiterated in his conversation with
 President Obama, is to stop lecturing Russia on
what it should do and look into the core of the
matter, which consists of the fact that Ukraine's
 authorities are absolutely unwilling to sit down
to talk with those who don't accept the February
 military coup and refuse to accept the policy of
 talking to the Russian-speaking population in
 southeast Ukraine by force,” Lavrov says.

He explains that people in Eastern Ukraine
 want their lawful rights to be respected.

“The only thing they want is to sit down to talks
 to discuss the future structure of the Ukrainian
state and what rights will be guaranteed to all
 citizens. This is not their whim. It is a demand
to the Kiev authorities to implement what they
signed when they were still in opposition,”
Lavrov says.

He adds that the creation of a national unity
 government was the key provision of the
February 21st agreement.

“After being formed, the national unity government
 was supposed to start a constitutional reform that
 was supposed to have served as the basis for
elections. Everything was distinct, logical and
clear,” Lavrov stresses.

He explains that the opposition broke the
agreement --- with Europe's connivance.

 “At least, the Europeans didn't want to insist
 that the former opposition must respect an
agreement which had already been signed.

“After that, an attempt was made to return to
 a constructive dialogue, end violence and to
start an inclusive, transparent and open
 constitutional process with the involvement
 of all Ukrainian regions,” Lavrov continues.

“When we brought the paper to the UN Security
 Council and the OSCE and asked them to adopt
 a document signed by the foreign policy chiefs
of the EU, the US, Russia and Ukraine, we did
not find any support,” Lavrov says.

 "We were offered President Poroshenko’s peace
 plan, which ignored the April 17th Geneva statement
 and the principle of an open constitutional process."


Obama says Russia to blame
for Malaysian plane tragedy
US President Barack Obama says Russia is refusing
 to take the concrete steps necessary to resolve the
 crisis in Ukraine, and this has led to the tragic crash
 of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17.

The Boeing 777-200 passenger aircraft crashed
in eastern Ukraine on Thursday, killing all 298
 on board. US intelligence and military officials
say the plane was hit by a Russian SA-series
 missile launched from eastern Ukraine.

In a speech from the White House on Friday,
Obama calls for an immediate ceasefire in
the area, so that a “credible international
investigation” can be conducted.

He says the evidence so far indicates that the
Malaysian airliner was shot down by a missile
 launched from areas inside Ukraine held by
“Russian separatists”.

“The deaths are an outrage of unspeakable
 proportions,” Obama says.

“It's not possible for these separatists to function
 how they’re functioning … without sophisticated
 equipment” and Russian support, he says.

“I spoke to President Putin yesterday in the wake of
 additional sanctions that we had imposed. He said
 he wasn't happy with them, and I told him that we
 have been very clear from the outset that we want
 Russia to take the path that would result in peace
 in Ukraine, but so far, at least, Russia has failed to
 take that path.”

“If Mr. Putin makes a decision that we are not going
 to allow heavy armaments and the flow of fighters
 into Ukraine across the Ukrainian-Russian border,
 then it will stop. He has the most control over that
 situation and, so far, he has not exercised it,”
Obama says.

Moscow dismisses as "nonsense", claims that
 Russian special forces are fomenting unrest.

The government in Kiev is currently engaged in
 an all-out offensive against activists who reject
the current regime imposed by violence in Kiev.

 Kiev is pursuing US conditions that dissent
must be crushed, or Ukraine will not get its
loans from the US-controlled IMF.

The armed attacks on anti-coup activists are
following very closely a US plan outlined in a
RAND Corporation memo.

The memo, leaked earlier this month, showed
 the US government-funded think tank advised
 the Ukrainian government to engage in an all-
out war in the south-east,  place citizens in
 internment camps, and kill all who resist.



'An unheard of provocation'

"This morning, cables were full of reports about
 the unheard of news, that a Malaysia Airlines
 passenger plane had been hit at an altitude of
10,100 meters as it flew over Ukrainian territory,
along a route controlled by the war-hungry
 government of chocolate king, Petro Poroshenko.

"Cuba, which has always stood in solidarity with
the Ukrainian people, and in the difficult days of
 the Chernobyl tragedy provided medical care to
the many children affected by the accident’s
 harmful radiation --- and is always willing to
continue doing so --- must express our
 repudiation of the action of the anti-
Russian, anti-Ukrainian and pro-
imperialist government.

"At the same time, coinciding with the Malaysian
 aircraft crime, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin
 Netanyahu, head of the nuclear state, ordered
his army to invade the Gaza Strip, where, over
 the last several days, hundreds of Palestinians
 have died, many of them children.

The President of the United States supported
 this action, describing the repugnant act, as
 'legitimate defense'.

"Obama does not support David against Goliath,
but rather Goliath against David. As is known,
 young men and women from the Israeli people,
 well prepared for productive work, are being
 exposed to death without honour, without glory.

"I'm not aware of the Palestinian’s military
strategy, but I know that a combatant
prepared to die can defend even the ruins
 of a building, as long as he has his rifle --
as the heroic defenders of Stalingrad

"I only wish to express my solidarity with the
heroic people who defend the last sliver
remaining, of what was their homeland
for thousands of years."

Fidel Castro Ruz



Russia's Defense Ministry reveals that it holds
a record of Ukrainian missile defense radars
on the day of the Boeing 777 crash.

The ministry says that features of the Buk-M1
mean that it exchanges information between
the squadrons of one battalion.

Militias don't have the Ukrainian Buk missile
system, admits Ukraine's general prosecutor.

The flight route of the Boeing 777 and the site
of its crash were within the zone of operation
 of two Ukrainian batteries of the S-200 long-
range anti-aircraft missile system, and three
 squadrons of the Buk-M1 medium-range anti-
aircraft missile system, the press service of
 the Russian Defense Ministry says on Friday.

“Russian radio-technical facilities during July 17
 were recording the work of the 9s18 Kupol radar
 station of the Buk-M1 squadron, stationed in the
 area of the Styla settlement (30 km south of
Donetsk),” the ministry adds.

The Russian Defense Ministry adds that Kiev’s
 statement that Ukraine’s anti-aircraft defense
 systems or Ukrainian armed forces planes, on
July 17th, did not fire on air targets, raises
 serious doubts.

 “This information is fully confirmed by the air
data recorders,” the ministry adds.


Unilateral Sanctions Against Russia
             Are an Expression of Evil               
 Russian Prime Minister Dmitri Medvedev says
that sanctions "are an expression of evil", but
 they have not brought anyone to their knees
in the world, despite all the damage inflicted
on peoples and their economies.

The Russian Foreign Ministry considers that
 the new package of sanctions from the West
 against Russia, allegedly aimed at specific
 economic sectors, is shameful, because
 the events in Ukraine "aren't developing
 according to Washington's script".

When referring to sanctions against Russia,
 at the meeting with the rest of the cabinet,
 Medvedev pointed out that such measures
cannot cause irreparable damage to the
 economy, as western media reports say.

Taking note of international experience,
 they have not succeeded and have not
 bought anyone to their knees, the
 Russian leader said.

He warned that as a unilateral instrument,
 these sanctions against Russian citizens
 and companies are illegal, because they
are not based on decisions by the UN
 and are being imposed arbitrarily.

Medvedev noted that punitive measures
 against Russian companies in the energy
sector, military-industrial complex, and
 some banks, will only promote more
anti-US and anti-Europe attitudes.

He added that they will help consolidate Russia's
 society against those who are trying "to limit our
 country & act against the interests of its citizens".

The head of government emphasised the need
to reorientate Russia's economic development
 models, so that they can replace imports and
 internal sources of growth can be used,
 including financial resources.

He admitted, however, that the pressure
from the West will have an impact, in a
 certain way, on budgetary policies, but
made it clear that the State will comply
 with all its social obligations.



Israel has launched a ground invasion on the
besieged Gaza Strip, as the Palestinian death
toll from Israeli airstrikes & shelling, hits 243.

On Thursday, Israeli forces launched a ground
 offensive against the blockaded enclave after
 Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu instructed the
 army to push the aggression against Gaza,
into "a new stage".
Netanyahu made the decision after a security
cabinet meeting in Tel Aviv.

Israeli warplanes, warships and artillery have
today launched an intensive bombardment of
different locations in the tiny coastal enclave.

Israel has killed at least 243 people and injured
 1,800 others since it began its latest onslaught
 against Palestinians in the Gaza Strip on July 8.

About a third of the Palestinian fatalities are
women and children.

Since July 8, the Israeli military has attacked
 1,800 targets across Gaza, home to 1.8 million
 Palestinians living under an Israeli blockade.

Hamas has been responding to the full-scale
Israeli assaults by firing rockets into Israel.

Israel has blockaded Gaza since 2007, denying
 the Palestinian people there, their basic rights,
such as freedom of movement, well paid jobs,
 adequate healthcare and education.


2 Ukrainian fighters seen following
Malaysian jet minutes before crash

Two Ukrainian fighters were following the
passenger Boeing-777 of Malaysian Airlines
several minutes before the crash, Russia’s
 TV Channel One says Friday, citing a tweet
 made by a Spanish air traffic controller, of
 Kiev’s airport Borispol.

According to the Spanish air traffic controller,
 2 Ukrainian fighters were seen following the
Malaysian jet 3 minutes before it disappeared
from radars.

This information is confirmed by eyewitnesses
 in the Donetsk region who saw Ukrainian war-
planes near the passenger jet. They say they
 heard the sound of powerful blasts and saw
a Ukraine warplane shortly before the crash.

All those who were onboard the plane - 280
 passengers and 15 crew members - died.

According to preliminary data, passengers
included citizens of the Netherlands, the
US, UK, France, and Malaysia.

According to Russian Emergencies Minister
Vladimir Puchkov, there were no Russians
 among the passengers.



A Malaysian passenger airliner has reportedly
 been ‘shot down’ over Ukraine near the border
 with Russia - all 295 people on board are dead.

The Boeing plane was en route from Amsterdam,
to Kuala Lumpur on Thursday, when it fell from
10 kilometers high above eastern Ukraine.

Itar-Tass news agency says the airplane
 was downed by a “ground-to-air missile.”

A Russian aviation industry source says the
 plane didn't enter Russia’s airspace on schedule.

Anton Gerashenko, an adviser to Ukraine's interior
 ministry, says on his Facebook page the plane was
 flying at an altitude of 33,000 feet when it was hit
 on Thursday by a missile fired from a Buk launcher,
 the Associated Press reports.

BUK, also known as the SA-17 GRIZZLY, is a mobile
anti-aircraft system mounted usually on a tracked
 vehicle or lorry, that can simultaneously track and
 strike 6 targets flying from different directions and
 at different altitudes, according to military think-
tank Globalsecurity.org.

Europe’s air traffic regulator, Eurocontrol,
 has announced the closure of eastern
Ukrainian airspace until further notice.

"Since the crash, the Ukrainian authorities
 have informed Eurocontrol of the closure
 of all routes from the ground to unlimited
 altitude in Eastern Ukraine," Eurocontrol
says in its statement.

“All flight plans that are filed using these
 routes are now being rejected by Euro-
control. The routes will remain closed
 until further notice,” it adds.

Leading European airlines have announced
plans to route planes away from the area.

These developments came just hours after the
 passenger plane went down in Grabovo village,
 about 40 kilometers from the Russian border.

Ukrainian Interior Ministry officials say
 23 US citizens were among those killed.

Senior Ukrainian authorities claim that the
 Boeing 777 was hit by a ground-to-air missile.
 Yet the International Air Transport Association
says that the airspace was not subject to any

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko
is calling the crash an act of terror.

Anti-coup authorities, however, accuse Kiev
 of shooting down the plane. They have also
 proposed a three-day ceasefire in eastern
 Ukraine, to allow for recovery work at the
 site of the downed airliner.

International condolences are pouring in
 over the tragic crash of the Malaysia
Airlines plane in troubled eastern Ukraine.

US President Barack Obama and Russian
 President Vladimir Putin have reportedly
discussed the incident by 'phone.


Kiev’s military retreats from Luhansk,
leaves settlements near Donetsk

Self-defense fighters forced Kiev's military to
retreat, the local news agency Novorossiya
 reported on its website on Thursday.

Kiev's troops left their positions in the
 Sabovka, Govorukha, Roskoshnoye and
 Georgiyevka settlements near Luhansk,
  retreating to the west, the agency said.

The militia has also established control
over Marinovka settlement in Donetsk

 Kiev's troops were surrounded by self-
defense forces, and had to retreat.

Donetsk People’s Republic troops opened fire
  using 120mm mortars against Kiev military’s
 fortified positions near Mospino settlement in
 Donetsk Region, destroying a KAMAZ truck,
an armored personnel carrier, an anti-tank
system and killing and wounding about 50
personnel, the self-defense militia reported.

Ukraine's National Security & Defense Council
 spokesperson Andriy Lysenko said Wednesday
 evening, that "fierce fighting" was underway
 between self-defense militia and Ukraine's
 military, in Amvrosiyevka, Marinovka and
 Izvarino settlements in Donetsk Region.

“We understand that there are losses. The
 battle is continuing, our guys are fighting on
 but it is very hard there so far,” Lysenko said.

The southeast Ukraine militia has tanks,
combat aircraft, multiple launch rocket
systems and artillery guns in its arsenal.

The self-defense fighters say they seized
them all, in battles with Kiev's military.

On Tuesday, the parliament of the Union of
the Donetsk & Luhansk Republics, declared
that all armed Ukrainian formations staying
on their territories are illegal, and said that
“corresponding measures would be taken”
 against them.

Donetsk People’s Republic Defense Minister
 Igor Strelkov, said earlier, that self-defense
 militias are switching to a contractual basis
 and would now “receive about $500-800 in
 money allowances.”

 Union Parliamentary Chair, Oleg Tsaryov, says
 the self-defense forces have enough strength
 to contain Kiev's military.



The next round of 3-way consultations on the
 Ukrainian crisis (involving the Organization for
Security and Co-operation in Europe, and
representatives of Kiev and the south-east
of  Ukraine, was held on Thursday evening.

It was, above all, expected to yield an agreement
 on a ceasefire and the exchange of prisoners,
the speaker of the Supreme Council of the self-
proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR),
 Denis Pushilin, told a pre-meeting briefing.

“There's hope that progress will be made towards
 a ceasefire. We don’t want any more citizens to
be killed. At the moment we can only talk about
a ceasefire and an exchange of captives, all for
all. It’s the only correct option,” Pushilin said.

He added:- “taking part in the consultations
 from Donetsk is DPR First Deputy PM Purgin,
and the candidate from Luhansk has yet to
 be approved”.

The consultations would take place at
19:00 Thursday, the DPR speaker said.


5 hour humanitarian ceasefire ends...
Israel continues bombing beseiged Gaza

Hamas & Palestinian militant groups agreed
to a UN appeal for a five hour humanitarian
ceasefire with Israel to occur on Thursday.

Israel Defense Forces said they would enable
 a humanitarian window in Gaza between 10am
 to 3pm local time (7am - 12pm GMT) Thursday,
 as a result of a dialogue with the UN.

It was the first pause in fighting since Israel &
 Hamas fighters engaged in fierce cross-border
 attacks last Tuesday, when Israel started an
all-out operation to halt Gaza rocket fire. The
 operation has claimed 223 Palestinian lives
so far, and one Israeli.

On Thursday, the killing began again.

Resistance groups say they want the
seige on Gaza lifted before any talks.


Russia threatens retaliation
 over new US sanctions

"The US administration's new decision to
enforce sanctions against a number of
Russian legal entities and individuals,
under a far-fetched and false pretext,
can not be called anything other than
outrageous and fully unacceptable,"
Russia's Deputy Foreign Minister,
Sergei Ryabkov, said on Thursday.

Ryabkov noted that Moscow will
retaliate, without providing details.

"We condemn those politicians and officials
 who are behind such actions, and confirm
 our intention to adopt measures which will
 be perceived in Washington rather painfully
 and acutely," Ryabkov said.

"We are not after an immediate effect, we
 are not going to copy the methods of the
 US administration that provoke rejection,
 we will not yield to provocation, and will
 act in a calm manner," he added.

The reaction came after the US Treasury
 said the measures included sanctions
 against Russia’s Gazprombank and
Rosneft energy companies.

Under the new embargoes, Washington
is also targeting a series of large banks,
and energy and defense firms.

The EU deferred a sanctions vote after
nearly half of its members refused to
impose trade sanctions... then put a
small list forward on more individuals
and instructed two EU organisations
not to finance new investments.


President Assad: Syria to Stay Proud,
Steadfast, Strong against Foreigners

Syria's President Bashar al-Assad was sworn in
 on Wednesday, and he stressed that Syria will
stay proudly, steadily strong against foreign
troublemakers, over 3 years after terrorism
 swept into its land, disguised as “revolution”.

In a triumphant speech delivered after he took
 the oath of office at a red carpet ceremony in
 Damascus, the Syrian leader saluted all the
 “honorable” and “free” Syrians.

He branded the 2011 so-called Arab spring as
a "fake spring" and reminded us of how some
 had spoken for Syria's people, by repeatedly
 raising the slogan:  “The People Want’.

“Yes, the people did want, the people did
make their decision, the people did act,”
 the President said, smiling.

“Years have passed since some chanted for
 freedom, but you Syrians were freemen at
the time of subordination, and you were
 masters at the time of acting,” he added.

The President hailed the Syrian people's
firm steadfastness, as they refused to
bow, surrender or give up, to those
who shouted loudest about God.

“They wanted a revolution, but you have
 been the real revolutionaries,” he said.

The Syrian president added that ugly faces
were exposed after the mask of ‘freedom’
 and ‘revolution’ was dropped.”

“All those who exploited the crisis
for their own benefit, have lost.”

Assad hailed Syria’s presidential elections
 as “a full-dimensional battle” and not just
a procedural political process, but a battle
that “for its victory, all other battles have
 been devoted.”

The elections, he added, “were a declaration
 of real affiliation to the homeland, that rises
 above affiliations given by IDs or passports.”
“The elections were a bullet shot straight at
the terrorists,” he added.

Assad stressed that Syria’s “victory could
 not have been achieved, had it not been
for the blood of the martyrs and injured.”

President Assad added that “since the start,
 we warned that what was happening was
 a dangerous scheme for the region.”

“Isn't what we see today in Iraq, Lebanon, all
 countries infected by the false plague of the
Arab spring, concrete, tangible proof of what
 we warned of before,” the Syrian leader asked.

On the other hand, President Assad stressed
 that Syria will continue fighting terrorism...

“We have decided from the first, to press on
 using a balanced approach; by both striking
 terrorism, plus making local peace moves
 towards those who wanted to return to the
 right path, and we were always confident
 that the right solutions would be and are,
 Syrian ones.”

“We're not concerned about those who left
 as traitors, agents or corrupters, as Syria
has now been cleansed of them… and they
 have no place or position at the Syrian table.”

President al-Assad added that “this day marks
 the start of a new stage, the main distinguishing
 feature of which, is consensus on protecting the
 homeland and rebuilding it morally, psychologically,
 and physically, as well as consensus on eliminating
 terrorism and bringing all those who strayed from
 a proper path, back into the arms of the homeland.”

On the brutal Israeli aggression against
 Gaza, the Syrian leader noted this was
 not a separate event, “because all events
 since the occupation of Palestine, up to
 the invasion of Iraq and Sudan's division,
were part of a chain of events planned
 by Israel and the West and implemented
 always by the countries of oppression,
tyranny, and regression.”

President Assad stressed that the events in
Syria and the whole region are directly linked
to Palestine, adding that those who believe
they can live in peace, while distancing them-
selves from the Palestinian cause, are truly

Palestine “will always be the central cause
 based on principles & reality, and what that
 reality imposes in terms of links between
what is happening in Syria and Palestine,”
 he said.

Finally, President Assad saluted the Syrian
 Army, which spared no effort in defense
of the homeland, and salutes the popular
defense groups --- and all the young men
 and women who took up arms in defense
of the dignity, pride and honour, of their


UN Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon,
calls on all UN members to implement
 the sanctions imposed on Takfiri ISIL

“Member states must meet their obligation
 to implement and enforce the targeted
financial sanctions, arms embargo and
travel ban imposed on ISIS (ISIL),”

 the UN chief wrote in a report to
 the UN Security Council, on the
 UN's political mission in Iraq.

Al-Qaeda-linked groups, including ISIL,
have been listed as terrorist entities
 under sanctions by the UN.

Ban denounces the crimes being committed
 by the terrorist group, describing their acts of
terrorism & violence as “extremely disturbing.”

“I strongly condemn the upsurge of violence
at the hands of ISIS and its supporters and
call on (U.N.) member states, including Iraq’s
 neighbours, to come together and support
 Iraq in its fight against terrorism,” Ban wrote.

“Terrorism must not be allowed to succeed
 in steering Iraq away from its path towards
 stability and democracy,” he added.

The crisis in Iraq escalated after Takfiri ISIL
 terrorists took control of Mosul on June 10,
then Tikrit, just 140 kilometers (87 miles)
 northwest of the capital.

 The militants have declared a “caliphate”
 in the overrun areas.

Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki has said
Saudi Arabia and Qatar are responsible for
 the security crisis and growing terrorism in
his country, denouncing Riyadh as a major
supporter of global terrorism.


Iraq forces withdraw from Tikrit
offensive after heavy mortar fire

The Iraqi army has retreated from the city of Tikrit,
140km northwest of Baghdad, after their offensive
met strong resistance.

The operation was an attempt to push back Sunni
 militants controlling large parts of the country.

 Government army and allied Shiite volunteers
 withdrew their troops to a base four km south
after being caught by heavy mortar and sniper
fire, a soldier who fought in the battle tells
 Reuters news Agency.



 Israeli jets early on Wednesday bombed the
home of a senior Hamas leader as part of a
series of morning raids on Hamas officials.

 There were reportedly no casualties there,
 but doctors reported 3 fatalities elsewhere
 in the morning.


Parliament of Union of People’s Republics
adopts constitution of Novorossia

The parliament of the Union of People’s Republics
 (UPR) has adopted changes to the Constitution of
the confederative state of Novorossia, and has
passed a number of important laws, parliament
 head Oleg Tsaryov states.

“The second plenary meeting of the parliament of
 the Union of People’s Republics has taken place.
 The meeting adopted changes to the Constitution
of UPR. We can now rightly, de jure, call our state
 Novorossia. This name has been enshrined in the
 Constitution. Our legislative body is now called
 the parliament of Novorossia,” he said.

Each deputy will be responsible for his own
 district, work & help people there, especially
 with humanitarian aid, parliament's head says.

 “The real work with the citizens of Novorossia
 will be launched. I hope that the parliament of
 Novorossia will become a venue in which the
 people’s republics will be reaching consensus
 and developing common decisions. Step by
step we will be moving towards building an
 independent state,” Tsaryov says.

“We all realise very well that two republics
 are stronger than each separate one.
Having launched Novorossia as a project,
having adopted the Constitution of the
state, we are ready to admit all the other
 republics of southeast Ukraine, possibly,
 from the west also. In the Novorossia state
 all republics will have equal opportunities
 to settle language and cultural issues.
 They will have equal voting rights.

The parliamentary session held on
 Monday registered 48 deputies: 25
from Luhansk and 23 from Donetsk
 People’s Republics. UPR's parliament
 has 60 deputies: 30 from each republic.

On June 24th, the self-proclaimed Donetsk
 People’s Republic and the Luhansk People’s
 Republic, announced their decision to unite
 into a confederative state - the Union of
People’s Republics.


The cease fire collapsed!
Sadly, the cease fire collapsed.

Israel began large scale air raids on Gaza
after Hamas & other organizations in Gaza
 refused to accept the cease-fire proposal...
continuing to fire rockets into Israel.

The situation is escalating and many more
innocent civilians will suffer - with no end
in sight.

Please invite more people to call an end
this horrible war.


Israel accepted ceasefire proposal,
as did Abbas, but Hamas rejected it.
According to a statement from the Israeli PM's
 Office, Israel's security cabinet accepted the
 Egyptian proposal on Tuesday morning for a
 ceasefire starting at 9am Tuesday, local
time (0600 GMT).

Egypt's initiative demanded an immediate
 ceasefire in Gaza, and urged Israel to stop
aggression on the Palestinian people.

The move was welcomed by Palestinian
 President Mahmoud Abbas, who urged both
 parties to be committed to the terms of the
 initiative to stop the bloodshed.

The Cairo-based Arab League also supported
 Egypt's bid for a ceasefire in Gaza, calling on all
 parties to support it, said a joint statement after
 their extraordinary ministerial meeting.

The AL announced in the statement the formation
 of a ministerial committee "to head to the United
 Nations and demand an end to Israeli aggression
 & provide guaranteed protection for Palestinians."

Welcoming the initiative, US President Obama
said Israel has the right to defend itself against
 the "inexcusable" attacks by Hamas militants,
 yet "the death & injury of Palestinian civilians
is a tragedy, which is why we've emphasized
 the need to protect civilians."

Al-Qassam Brigades, the armed wing of 
Hamas, however, rejected the proposal,
 saying that there woul be no ceasefire
 until an agreement was reached to lift
the illegal inhumane seige on Gaza.

"We reject any ceasefire before reaching a
truce agreement," Sami Abu Zuhri, Hamas'
 spokesperson in Gaza said, in an emailed
 press statement, adding that Gaza is still
 under occupation and seige and that their
resistance to occupation and seige, is the
 right of their people to defend themselves,
[and not merely a "terrorist threat"]

Abu Zuhri said they had not received
any official initiative from any side.

 "If the published text of this is correct,
 we can only say that it is an initiative of
subordination and submission, which
al-Qassam Brigades totally and
completely rejects."

"Escalation, violence, counter-violence and
 the resultant victims will not favour any of
 the two parties," said the initiative.

The initiative urged both Israel and Palestinians
 in Gaza "to stop all acts of aggression whether
via land, sea or air," and the opening of border
crossings to facilitate the traffic of people and
goods, in the light of stable security conditions
on the ground.


Anti-coup forces in eastern Ukraine say
 they have shot down another military plane.

A recent video purportedly shows the moment
when the Ukrainian military transport airplane,
an Antonov-26, was hit in the Lugansk region.

Officials announced that the aircraft’s 5 crew
 parachuted out as soon as they were targeted.

Oleksiy Dmytrashkivsky, a spokesperson for
 Kiev's controversial military operations, says
 the army lost contact with the plane earlier, 
as it flew over 6,000 metres above the ground:

“Today, at around lunchtime, contact with this
 plane was lost. I cannot add anything more."

Military authorities said that the aircraft was hit
after it threw down supplies for troops based in
 Krasnodon area of Lugansk.

Meanwhile, other reports said that anti-coup
 forces had destroyed 27 Ukrainian armored
 vehicles near Lugansk.



James Fetzer, US philosopher, on Kiev's ferocity:

 "As a former Marine Corps officer I would observe
 that they are taking extremely aggressive action
 against the rebels. It would not surprise me if
 someone at the level of Zbigniew Brzezinski, is
 advising them. It's intended to provoke Russia
 into a military response which may yet happen.

"As a philosopher I must observe that the silence
of the US about the immorality of these actions
is completely stunning. Here we have atrocities
taking place...

"The Israelis are committing genocide in Gaza,
but the US is mute because Israel is our ally.
We have Ukraine committing genocide in
Ukraine, but the US stands mute because
Russia is now apparently our new enemy.

"The situation is a complete disgrace and
America has lost any semblance of moral
authority in the world. 

"It appears that the forces behind this, which
 include the US military & NATO, are dedicated
 to provoking a conflict with Russia, which I
must observe, it is not very likely to win.

"Russia has very sophisticated equipment,
 but, ultimately, if there is a nuclear exchange
 between these world powers we're all losers:
 a nuclear winter will threaten to envelope the
earth --- and extinguish life on this planet."



Russia is considering targeted retaliatory strikes
 against Ukraine, after shells fired from Ukraine
hit Russian territory, killing a civilian, media said.

Russian daily Kommersant, quoted a source
close to the Kremlin, saying that Moscow is
mulling the possibility of targeted strikes.

The source, whose name isn't mentioned,
 said “our patience is not limitless,” adding
 that Russia “knows exactly where they
(the Ukrainians) are firing from.”

According to the source, Russia is considering
 targeted one-off strikes on the positions from
 which, shells are fired at Russian territory.

The Kiev government denies that Ukrainian
 shells have fallen on Russian territory, and
blames the anti-coup forces in the area.

Russia's Rostov region has recently seen
 over a dozen shells hitting the area, which
 borders Ukraine’s eastern Lugansk region,
 where Kiev is attacking anti-coup forces.


Put Palestine under UN protection: Abbas

President of the Palestinian national unity
 government, Mahmoud Abbas, calls for the
 international protection of Palestine.

“President Abbas presented a letter to the UN
 Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace
 Process, Robert Serry, addressed to the UN
 Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, to officially
put the State of Palestine under the UN's
 international protection system and to form
 a legal committee for immediate follow-up,”
 the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO)
 says in a statement.

Hanan Ashrawi, a senior member of the PLO,
said in a statement after a meeting of the
PLO executive that “Abbas is undertaking
 several steps and measures to deal with
 the horrific situation in Gaza.”



Russia warns of “irreversible consequences”
after a cross-border shell fired from Ukraine,
hit a residential area in Russia, killing one
man and injuring two others.

In a statement, Russia's Foreign Ministry described
the incident in Russia’s Rostov region as another
act of aggression by Ukraine towards sovereign
Russian territory, saying that Russia has the
right to take measures to protect its territory
and to ensure the security of its citizens.

“The incident shows an extremely dangerous
 escalation of tensions at the Russian-Ukraine
border & can have irreversible consequences,
 for which Ukraine will bear responsibility,”
the statement says.

The artillery shell from Ukraine reportedly killed
 a 46-year-old man and injured 2 elderly women.

Kiev, however, denies that any Ukrainian shells
 have fallen onto Russian territory, blaming it on
 anti-coup forces, who still control much of the
 border area.

The Russian Rostov region has recently seen
 over a dozen shells hitting the area, which
borders Ukraine’s eastern Lugansk region,
where Ukrainian troops are fighting Kiev's
regime, installed and backed by the USA.

Hundreds of people have been killed in the
ongoing military campaign in Ukraine, which
 has also forced tens of thousands to escape
 to Russia, with the majority arriving in the
 Rostov region.


         France Announces New Military Operation in Africa     
 French Defense Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian
 says that about 3,000 soldiers will participate
 in an upcoming military operation in Africa.

The action will begin this summer, together
with five regional countries. Its objective
is to fight terrorist groups, Le Drian says.

The majority will be stationed in Chad
 and Mali, with 1,250 & 1,000 soldiers,

France also expects to activate its military
 bases in Mauritania, Burkina Faso, Niger
and Chad.

On the French intervention in Jan. 2013
 in Mali, the minister notes that the troops
 will be relieved by the UN Stabilization
Mission and finally, by Malian forces.

France also maintains nearly 2,000 soldiers
 in the Central African Republic, as part of
Operation Sangaris, begun in Dec. 2013.


Russia Reopens Checkpoints
                  on Ukrainian Border               
The Russian border control service has
reopened 3 checkpoints in the southern
 region of Rostov, bordering Ukraine, after
 over a week of interruptions due to mortar
attacks from the other side of the border.

The checkpoints in Donestk, Gukovo and
 Novoshajtinsk were reopened and have
their functions, says Vasili
a representative of the Federal
Service in Rostov.

Malaev notes that the checkpoints are
 now working normally but that there is
no movement of people from Ukraine's
side, in Gukovo or Novoshajtinsk.

The 3 checkpoints were closed in
early July due to repeated attacks
 with heavy artillery from Ukraine.

Malaev says a projectile hit and exploded
 on the checkpoint, affecting border traffic.

Fortunately, there were no victims and
 the evacuation was quick, says Malaev.


Donetsk militia downs Ukraine’s Mi-24 chopper

 Militia of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s
 Republic (DPR) have downed a Mil-24 used by
the Ukrainian Air Force, Novorossiya news
 agency says.

On the outskirts of Snezhny, in Donetsk region,
the militia downed a Ukrainian Mi-24 helicopter
 by using a shoulder-carried air-defence system,
and destroyed several of the enemy's combat
units, it said.

Earlier, the DPR press service said its fighters
had downed an Su-25 in a morning fight near
Gorlovka city in the Donetsk region.

“Ukraine’s aviation launched an assault on
 the outskirts of the city,” the DPR spokes-
person told reporters adding that “a return
 of vertical fire destroyed the jet, supposedly
 an Su-25.”

Earlier, militiamen destroyed a military plane,
 presumably an attack aircraft, in the area of
the town of Perevalsk in the Lugansk region
- another battleground of the civil conflict in
 Ukraine’s east.

DPR evacuating civilians from Donetsk
outskirts under Ukrainian army’s fire.

“The refugees are heading for Russia and
 we can speak about several hundreds of
 refugees,” - DPR's prime minister says.

The Government of the self-proclaimed
Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) has begun
 evacuating the population of Maryinka town
 bordering Donetsk city in the west, which is
the battleground between DPR's militia and
Kiev's army, PM Alexander Borodai says.

“First of all, we are evacuating children,”
Borodai says. “The refugees are heading
for Russia and involves several hundred

Many residents are fleeing the area of the
armed conflict on their own - by personal
or municipal transport, he says.

Ukraine’s military have continued their
 bombardment of Maryinka, damaging a
feed-milling factory, dairy, tire factory
 and a seepage station.

According to unverified data, the death
 toll in Maryinka now stands at 30.


Israeli Casualties by Resistance Rockets
 as Gaza's Offensive Death Toll hit 190

Seven Israelis were injured, one seriously,
 when rockets hit the occupied city of Ashdod.

Israeli media report that the petrol station
in Ashdod suffered a direct hit by rockets
fired at it, which started a massive fire.

Firefighters were deployed to the scene,
and 7 people received medical treatment
on the spot:-- one was severely wounded.


Iraq Accuses Kurds of Seizing Oil Fields

Iraq accuses Kurdish forces of seizing two
oil fields near Kirkuk, as relations between
Baghdad and the Kurdistan region hit a new
The Kurdish regional administration rejects
 the charge.

 "The oil ministry strongly condemns the seizure
 and control of crude oil in the Kirkuk and Bey
 Hassan oil fields this morning, by groups of
Kurdish peshmerga forces," the oil ministry
 says in a statement from Baghdad.
"The oil ministry strongly warns the Kurdistan
 region of the dangers of this irresponsible
behavior which violates the constitution and
 the national economy, and disregards the
 federal authorities, threatening iraq's unity."

Halkurd Mulla Ali, a spokesperson for Kurdish
 peshmerga forces, tells AFP that "peshmerga
 forces have not approached the oil fields in
 Kirkuk" province.

Iraqi lawmakers have met but failed to gain
a new government, in a parliament session
meant to revive flagging efforts to form one.
The only other time parliament met after the
April polls ended, MPs exchanged heckles
and others walked out.



Russia's ambassador at the UN has attempted
a third resolution to persuade Security Council
members to stop the
tragedy and arrange talks.

Russia Today reports that 2 warplanes
(one in Donetsk, one in Lugansk), were
shot down on Friday, and that 30 Kiev
troops were killed by self-defence units.

A column of armoured vehicles was
completely destroyed and over 100
Kiev soldiers were wounded.

President Poroshenko says "he"
will kill 100s of anti-Kiev rebels
for each one killed.

Kiev's army has intensified artillery fire
 on various buildings in Ukraine’s south-
eastern Luhansk region.

According to military reports, huge strikes
 are being aimed at industrial facilities, as
the self-defence Militias try to avoid direct
clashes, but use mortars to hit back.

A transport station came under mortar fire
 near militia facilities of the self-proclaimed
 Luhansk People's Republic, witnesses
 report from there.





9 young Palestinians were killed and 15 injured
 in an overnight Israeli air raid on a Gaza Strip
beach while watching the World Cup semifinal
 game between the Netherlands and Argentina.

The victims were sitting in a beach café in Khan
 Yunis when the Israeli F-16 fighter jet struck it.

No-one killed had been warned, according
 to Gulf News sources. However, this could
 not be independently verified.


4 dead, 16 injured as bus with miners
 fired upon in Eastern Ukraine.

At least four people have been killed and 16 injured
 after a bus carrying miners was shelled in Lugansk
 Region, eastern Ukraine. The bombardment almost
ripped the bus apart, according to local witnesses

“Four have been killed and 16 injured, two of them
 are in intensive care as they're seriously injured,”
 Maksim Timchenko, director general of Donbass
 Fuel-Energy Company (DTEK), says.

The bus was taking the miners from DTEK to
their workplace when it came under artillery
 fire at about 5:40pm local time (14:40 GMT).
It's still unclear who carried out the attack.

The company has decided to stop work at
 some of its facilities in the region, to avoid
similar tragedies.

“We've decided to stop work at four mines
 in Lugansk Region, where 4,500 people are
employed, until we're sure that people are
 safe,” Timchenko adds.

Earlier, the company’s press service reported
 15 injured, but didn’t state the number of dead.

‘As a result of the shell which hit the bus, over
15 people were injured. There are also dead
 miners,” said a statement from DTEK.

DTEK is an energy holding company with
its HQ in Donetsk, eastern Ukraine. It's the
largest private vertically integrated energy
 holding in the country.

Established in 2005, the company employs
 about 140,000 people. In February, 2013,
 DTEK controlled about 50% of Ukraine's
 coal production.

DTEK mines produce about 41.4 million
 tons of coal, annually.



The Kiev regime installed by the US government
 says it has launched an “all-out attack” on the
 eastern city of Donetsk held by anti-coup forces.

The interior ministry states that military pushes
  are taking place "across several
parts of the
front", and that the 'all-out attack'
may last
for another month.

Early last Thursday, three Ukrainian army
 troops were killed and 27 others wounded
 in fighting between pro-federal protesters
 and Kiev's soldiers in the country’s east.

Leader of the self-proclaimed “Lugansk
People’s Republic,” Valery Bolotov, says
around 50 Ukrainian soldiers were killed
in fighting over Lugansk airport, held by
pro-Kiev forces.



The Israeli military confirms that two
 Palestinian rockets struck Dimona -
where Israel has a nuclear reactor.

Palestinian resistance groups in the
 besieged Gaza Strip, fired rockets
 in retaliation for Israeli attacks on
 the coastal enclave.

Israeli media reports say Israel's Chief
 of Staff, Lt General Benny Gantz stressed
that pressure will be increased against
all Palestinians.

The UN called for a stop to the rising
tension, and a ceasefire immediately,
but was ignored.

Gaza has been blockaded since 2007,
a situation that has caused a decline
 in the standard of living, crushing
 levels of unemployment, and
unrelenting poverty.

The apartheid regime of Israel denies
1.7 million people in Gaza basic rights
- such as freedom of movement,  jobs
with decent wages, and adequate
healthcare and education.


Moscow says the anti Kiev coup militias
 in eastern Ukraine will not surrender ---
 until Kiev negotiates with them.

"They are not ready to fulfill Kiev's ultimatums
 to capitulate and lay down their arms before
 negotiations begin," Russia's Foreign Minister
Sergei Lavrov says at a press conference
with Foreign Minister, Federica Mogherini,
 of Italy, at a meeting in Moscow.

Lavrov repeats that the most important
 phase in resolving Ukraine's crisis is to
 put in force an unconditional ceasefire
 once again.

The Organization for Security and Cooperation
 in Europe, Ukraine, and Russia, make up “the
 contact group” for the crisis there.

"Another important aspect is that all members
 of the contact group assume their set task –
an unconditional, bilateral, stable ceasefire
 - so they see their partners in the contact
 group as participants in the process, and
not merely as people from whom they
demand capitulation," Lavrov says.

Ukraine's Defense Minister Valeriy Heletey
 says Kiev won't hold talks with anti-coup units
 unless they “irrevocably lay down their arms.”

The security chief of the self-proclaimed Donetsk
 People's Republic Alexander Khodakovsky says
 pro-independence forces are preparing to defend
 Donetsk, an industrial city of one million people,
 and fight back after losing Slavyansk, their main
 stronghold, as oligarch President Poroshenko
says he wants the army offensive to continue.


New PM approved in Luhansk People’s Republic

Marat Bashirov says the Luhansk People's Republic
 is switching over to rubles since Ukraine's Finance
 Ministry disconnected the Luhansk treasury from
 state servers.

The Supreme Council (parliament) of the self-
proclaimed Luhansk People’s Republic (LPR)
 has approved the candidacy of Marat Bashirov
as C
hair of the LPR Council of Ministers.

Bashirov was born in 1964 in the Russian republic
 of Mordovia. He's a former vice president of private
 Russian energy company KES (Complex Energy
 Systems), which is present in 16 Russian regions.

The newly elected premier outlined the priorities of
 the Council of Ministers activity for the near future,
 which “will be aimed at the resolution of economic
 issues". He said a working budget variant will be
 drafted by November, with figures in rubles.

“The working variant of the budget will be drafted in
 rubles. Taking into account that Kiev disconnected
 our treasury yesterday, the issue of joining this or
that currency emerged,” he said.

The new government of the LPR plans to resolve the
 issue of cooperation with the Russian Federation in
 the energy sphere shortly before this winter.

The Luhansk Republic is connected to Russia’s
 gas system, and, Bashirov said, "there'll be no
 difficulties with deliveries". He said that steam
 generating stations may be supplied to the LPR
from Russia.


       Spanish Figures Ask to Avoid Civilization's Collapse               

 Around 250 Spanish personalities demand
that, if the world wants to avoid a probable
 civilization collapse in the 21st century, it
needs an urgent change now, in its model
of consumption.

The signatories of a manifesto circulated today
 assert that our present method of growing, is
already a genocide in slow motion, and that the
rate of progress is weakening, because of:
the decline in cheap energy; climate change;
 and geopolitical tensions due to the need
 for resources.

The document, entitled 'Last Call', which can
still be signed, asks parties & organizations
 emerging through social protest, to assume
 radical changes in their lifestyles.

Scientists, intellectuals and representatives
 of social, political & trade-union movements,
 warn that our present superficial planning of
 sustainable development, the commitment
 to eco-efficient technologies, or supposed
 "green" economies, is not enough.

We need a society whose objective is
 to recover balance with the biosphere,
 and which uses research, technology,
its culture, economics and politics, to
 move forward towards that aim.

They say that the ecological crisis is not a
 partial issue, that affects just ecosystems
 or resources --- it determines all aspects of
society: food, transport, industry, a balance
 between town and country, armed conflicts
--- the foundations of our economy and life.

All civilizations come to an end, & we have to
build a new one. The consequences of doing
 nothing or doing too little, lead us straight to
a social, economic and ecological collapse,
warns the manifesto.

However, the document says that, if we begin
 today, it is still possible to build a democratic
 society of solidarity, in peace with the planet.

Cayo Lara & Pablo Iglesias are among the
 politicians who have signed the document,
 and also social activists such as Ada Colau
 and Esther Vivas, writers like Isaac Rosa
 and Belen Gopegui, scientists such as
Antonio Turiel, and many other figures.


Moscow hopes the EU will denounce the
policy of the Kiev authorities, Russia's
 Foreign Ministry says.

“Despite numerous calls on the part of Russia,
 Ukraine’s Western partners, world bodies and
 the public, a massive military operation is still
continuing in Ukraine’s East. Civilians are still
being killed, and civil infrastructure facilities
 are still being destroyed by the operation,”
 the ministry says.

“It's apparently senseless to demand that Kiev
 stop shelling civil facilities yet again. Kiev is
 deaf to calls to save the lives of people,” the
 ministry says.

 “In this connection, we hope for a proper reaction
 on the part of the EU countries, condemning the
 criminal policy of the Kiev authorities.”

“Can it be that their policy is being conducted
 within the framework of the so-called political
 part of the association agreement between
the EU and Ukraine?” the statement queries.

The Russian foreign policy department cites
 events in eastern Ukraine over the last few
days, including artillery strikes on a Luhansk
city suburb - Bolshaya Vergunka, Luhansk
itself, as well as on Sloviansk, & air strikes
on Donetsk Airport.

A few bombs exploded on the grounds of Luhansk
 regional clinical treatment centre. In the Rostov
 Region in southern Russia, the “Donetsk” border-
crossing point came under fire from Ukraine, and
 in Nikolayevka (15 kilometers from Sloviansk),
 Ukrainian troops opened fire on civilians who
 were trying to leave the city.

On July 6th, National Guard soldiers conducted a
 mopping-up operation in Sloviansk and Kramatorsk,
 when they arrested all people who have ever given
 interviews to Russian journalists.

The next day, the cities came under artillery fire,
 despite the fact that the militiamen had left them.

“Kiev’s security officials are destroying their
 own cities, using tactics which are seldom
 used, even by occupation troops on hostile
 territory,” the Russian Foreign Ministry says.
 “These are facts. They can’t be hidden.”

At the end of last year, Ukraine’s then-President
Viktor Yanukovych, suspended the signing of
an association agreement with the EU to study
 the deal more thoroughly. His decision triggered
 anti-government protests that turned violent,
 and eventually led to a coup in February 2014.

New people were brought to power in Kiev
using riots and ultranationalist rhetoric,
supported by neo-fascist parties which
 now make up a third of Ukraine's cabinet.



Ex Finance Minister Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai
 has won Afghanistan's presidential elections,
 having received 56.44% of the votes.

According to preliminary information given
by a Central Electoral Commission member,
Ahmadzai’s competitor, ex Foreign Minister,
Abdullah Abdullah, received 43.56%.

The final official results will be announced
 on July the 22nd.


People’s militias in south-east Ukraine
 seize assault plane, anti-aircraft guns

Igor Plotnitsky, the defense minister of the self-
proclaimed Luhansk People’s Republic, says
 that the self-defense forces now have a Su-25
assault plane at their disposal.

“We seized a Su-25 plane from the Ukrainian army
 when it was making an emergency landing. It will
be ready to go into battle again after minor repairs.
 The army of the Luhansk People’s Republic, has
its own aviation,” Plotnitsky said.

Residents of Donetsk say they saw two
lorries with anti-aircraft guns driving to
Karlivka, 20km from Donetsk, carrying
self-defence fighters.

People’s militias have set up checkpoints
at all exits and entrances to Donetsk.

“It is possible to go in and out of the city.
Checkpoints have been set up at all transport
 arteries. However, they are not hindering the
 movement by civilians, including cars,” the
 press service of the self-proclaimed Donetsk
 People’s Republic tells ITAR-TASS.

“Shops, banks, enterprises and social service
 institutions are working normally. The situation
 in the city is calm. There is no panic in Donetsk.
 Many people who wanted to leave the city for
 fear of military hostilities in its territory, have
 decided to stay,” the press service says.


Moscow concerned about Kiev
 troops shelling civilian territories

Moscow is concerned by reports that the eastern
 Ukrainian towns abandoned by self-defense forces,
 including Slavyansk & Kramatorsk, are still being
 shelled by Ukrainian troops, states the Russian
Foreign Ministry’s commissioner for human rights,
Konstantin Dolgov.

He describes the shelling as a way the Kiev
government continues “to exert pressure” on
 those who are “dissatisfied, and do not want
 to reconcile themselves with the plans the
 authorities in Kiev are imposing on them.”

Dolgov calls for an immediate termination
 of the military operation by Kiev.


People in Donetsk rally
 in support of pro-Russians
A huge demonstration was held in
Donetsk to support pro-Russian forces.

Thousands of pro-Russian supporters
demonstrated in the city.

The protest rally came after Ukrainian troops
 forced pro-Russia forces out of Slavyansk.

Anti-Kiev-coup fighters left the city for
Kramatorsk after Ukrainian security forces'
 overnight attacks, saying they did it to avoid
civilian casualties, as Kiev's junta had poured
armed units into the city, using attack jets,
multiple rocket launchers and heavy artillery.

Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko ordered
 the Ukrainian flag to be hoisted all across the
 flashpoint city.

Opposition leader, Andrei Purgin, claims his men
 left Slavyansk to protect the civilian population.

Violence in Ukraine worsened after the Donetsk
 and Lugansk regions declared independence
on May 12th, after referenda, in which residents
 overwhelmingly voted in favor of independence
from Kiev. The authorities, who came to power
in a US-backed coup, dismiss the referenda as
“null and void”.

Hundreds of people have so far lost their lives
 as a result of the ongoing military campaign in
 Ukraine, which has forced tens of thousands
 to escape to Russia.


Iran, Russia to join forces
 against terror in Iraq: Tehran

Iran & Russia have agreed to jointly help Iraq
 curb terrorism, Iran’s Deputy Foreign Minister
 for Arab and African Affairs, Hossein Amir-
Abdollahian, says.

“Tehran and Moscow firmly support Iraq in its
 fight against terrorism and will strongly stand
 by the Iraqi nation and government to protect
 Iraq’s unity, independence, and territorial
integrity,” Amir-Abdollahian says, to al-Alam
Arabic-language news channel.

He adds that Iran and Russia both oppose any
 conspiracy for the disintegration of Iraq into
 smaller entities.

The top Iranian diplomat continues: “Tehran
 and Moscow have close, and in many cases,
a common and coordinated stance, on
regional developments.”

Iran and Russia believe that Iraq, along with
 its fight against terrorism, should seriously
 focus on completing the political process
 and facilitate parliament forming a cabinet.

The first session of the newly elected parliament
 was adjourned on July 1st, for a week, without
 choosing a new speaker, as Kurdish lawmakers
 boycotted the session over their conflicts with
other lawmakers.

Members of parliament are tasked with naming
a new unity government. After choosing a new
parliament speaker, they will have to pick Iraq's
president and prime minister, within 45 days.

Incumbent Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki
is bidding for a third term, despite stiff
 opposition from his key rivals.

On Iraq's future, Abdollahian says
 Tehran will respect and support any
coalition formed by Maliki’s State of
 Law coalition, which won the most
 parliamentary seats in the elections.

“If Maliki is introduced as the prime minister
and agreement is reached inside Iraq, we
 will strongly support him; and if any other
 individual is elected and approved within
 the framework of the recent election’s
 outcome, he too will be supported by the
 Islamic Republic of Iran,” he says, adding,
 "This is an entirely internal issue for Iraq."

Iraq is currently enduring a wave of violence,
which escalated after militants from the ISIL
 terrorist group, backed by several Western
countries and Saudi Arabia, took control of
 large swathes of the country, including key
 cities, last month.


Ukraine’s military shells east Ukraine’s
 Lugansk residential quarters

Kiev’s military opened artillery fire on residential
 buildings in east Ukraine’s Lugansk, the militia of
the self-proclaimed Lugansk People’s Republic

The fire was presumably conducted from Grad
 multiple launch rocket systems, the militia said.

“Several buildings are burning in the city; there
 are wounded persons and a lot of ambulances
in the streets. Eye-witnesses say the strike was
 delivered against the Accumulator Plant near the
 bus terminal,” the local self-defense militia said.

“The residents are hurriedly going into air-
raid shelters or leaving the shelling area.”

The local residents also reported several
powerful explosions near Lugansk airport.

The Ukrainian military are also shelling the
city’s Krasnodon, Sverdlovka districts, and
 the Izvarino checkpoint, the press office of
 the self-proclaimed Lugansk People’s
Republic said.

Combat operations are also continuing near
 the settlements of Mettalist and Krasny Yar,
and near the Izvarino checkpoint, which is
controlled by the local self-defense militia,
 the press office said.

A signature-collecting point has been opened
in the centre of Lugansk, to sign an appeal to
UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, with a
demand to stop Kiev’s aggression against

Health Minister of the self-proclaimed Lugansk
 People’s Republic Viktor Avakyan said that at
least 80 people, including 56 civilians and
24 self-defense fighters, had been taken to
 Lugansk hospitals as a result of bombings
and shelling by the Ukrainian military.



Kiev's authorities are arresting all men aged
from 25 to 35 in Ukraine’s southeastern city
 of Slavyansk, whether they are members of
the self-defence forces or not, the speaker of
 the parliament of the Union of Lygansk and
 Donetsk People’s Republics, Oleg Tsarev,
told Russia 24 TV channel.

“Overnight, they arrested all policemen and
 took them out of the city. They are arresting
 all young men aged from 25 to 35, not even
trying to find out whether these men took
 to arms or not. Searches are underway.
They are trying to find those who helped
 take care of the wounded,” he said.


Donetsk militia confirms -- left stronghold
 cities of both Slavyansk and Kramatorsk

The self-defense forces of the self-proclaimed
 Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) have left the
cities of Slavyansk and Kramatorsk, for the
south of the region, says the republic’s HQ.

A column of DNR militia arrived from Slavyansk -
 which had been surrounded by the Kiev military -
to Kramatorsk. However, the self-defense forces
later left Kramatorsk as well and headed towards
areas in Donetsk region – such as the city of
Gorlovka - which remain under militia control.

“Kramatorsk was difficult to defend because
 of its poor location. That’s why the Command
decided to leave the city,” a representative of
 the DPR headquarters told RIA Novosti agency.

However, the source says, small self-defense
 groups remain in Slavyansk and Kramatorsk
ready to fight with the Kiev-coup's forces.

Meanwhile, Ukraine's US installed PM
 Arseny Yatsenyuk, announces that the
military operation “liberating Slavyansk
 and Kramatorsk from terrorists” has
been accomplished, the Kiev regime's
 press-service reports.

The country’s President Petro Poroshenko
 calls the “liberation of Slavyansk” symbolic.

“It’s not a complete victory yet. But the clearing
 of Slavyansk from an armed to the teeth gang
of bigots has a huge symbolic meaning," his
official website reports.

According to Poroshenko, it is a turning point
 “in the fight with terrorists for the territorial
 integrity of Ukraine” and for “the return to
 normal life” in the Donetsk region.

Poroshenko has ordered the authorities to
 provide aid to Slavyansk residents and to
those in other areas “liberated from the
militants”. He also promises that work
 to resume water and energy supplies
will start "in the nearest future".

So far though, the military operation seems
 to have brought local residents only grief
and devastation.

“You think you won? That was a tactical retreat.
 We will enter Slavyansk again, with victory,”
 Denis Pushilin, one of the DPR leaders tweets.

Slavyansk residents say government forces are
 checking locals’ IDs and detaining all suspicious

As Russian Channel One reported earlier,
self-defense units had to leave Slavyansk
after “massive shelling” of the city, and when
 armored vehicles entered the area and street
 fighting began. That’s when the self-defense
 forces took the decision to leave the city,
 the channel says.

“Despite the massive bombardment, fighters
 stormed out of the city and headed straight
for neighboring Kramatorsk. A part of their
hard-ware was shot down in the process,”
the channel says.

Hours later, as self-defense troops left their
second stronghold as well, the Ukrainian flag
 was raised over Kramatorsk's admin building,
 which was used as the DPR headquarters.

Further to the south, in the capital of the region
 Donetsk, eyewitnesses say they spotted a lot
 of DPR’s military hardware and “suntanned and
bearded men with tattoos,” RIA Novosti quotes.

Donetsk authorities said earlier that they didn't
 have any confirmation that self-defense forces
were moving toward the city, Mayor Aleksandr
Lukyanchenko’s website says.

Earlier, one of the leaders of Donetsk People’s
 Republic, Pavel Gubarev, said the Slavyansk
 militia would probably relocate to Donetsk
and the surrounding area.

Ukraine's Interior Ministry announces that
 it's going to launch an investigation against
 “every policeman” in Slavyansk to find out
whether they cooperated with the self-
defense forces.

Such line-of-duty checks will define if “an
 employee of Slavyansk police cooperated
 with separatists or maintained loyalty to
 the Ukrainian people,” Deputy Interior
Minister Sergey Yarovoy says, as cited
by Ukraine's post-coup media.

Police in Donetsk region will be reformed -
starting with Donetsk and Lugansk cities -
 “due to necessity” - says the neo-fascist
 Interior Minister, Arsen Avakov.

 And for now, law enforcers from other
Ukrainian regions will be sent to work
 in the area.

“Police from the entire country will be
 working there, including those who got
 though the filter of fighting during the
anti-terrorist operation: in other words
 the guys who were not afraid,” he tells
journalists, as sited by segodnya.ua
news portal.

All the policemen who violated their oaths
 and left their guard posts in Donetsk and
Lugansk region have been fired, Avakov
 says. He adds that in some cases, “these
 people were arrested”.


Donetsk militia confirm Slavyansk falls to Kiev

Russia's Foreign Ministry announces that
Moscow is halting delivery of all weapons,
Ukrainian military forces' equipment and
funds owed by
Crimea to Kiev's authorities,
  because of their military acts in the east,
which have caused the “death of civilians,
including children, and the civilian infra-
structure in the Donetsk and Lugansk
regions, being destroyed.”

“The decision will be valid until a full cease-
fire in the east of Ukraine by the country’s
military, & a peaceful solution is reached,”
Russia’s Foreign Ministry says.


Afghan lorries go up in flames

A huge fire has destroyed over 400 vehicles
 - carrying fuel and oil for US-led forces -
near Kabul, police say.

Afghan police spokesperson, Hashmatullah
 Stanekzai, says the fire broke out overnight
at the lorry terminal near Paghman town,
northwest of Kabul.

Most of the tankers burnt were used to carry
 fuel to US-led troops operating in Afghanistan.

The Taliban claims responsibility for the fire.
The group also claims that 600 lorries and
 fuel tankers went up in flames.


Leaked: ‘US think-tank plan’ on E. Ukraine
 suggests internment camps, executions

A leaked memo attributed to 'RAND corporation
 think tank', suggests the Ukrainian govt should
 engage in an all-out war in the east, including
 shutting down all communications, putting
 citizens in internment camps and killing all
who resist such actions.

In the letter, leaked to online media, advice
is offered, step by step, on how to deal with
the people of eastern Ukraine.

The document's authenticity, (it bears the
RAND corporate logo), however, could not
be independently verified.

The RAND Corporation is a non-profit global think
 tank which offers research and analysis to the
US' armed forces.

In the first line the memorandum notes that the
 peace plan - as outlined by the new president -
 is likely to fail. However, it suggests that any
political or material downsides to following
the military operation, will be “outweighed”
by the gains.

The letter lists the advantages that a full
scale military onslaught against the break-
away eastern Ukrainian regions would have.

The pro-Russian political movement, claims
 the advice, would be decimated and the pro-
Russian voters would become disorganized.

Instead of upholding the region’s coal supplies
 as a source of future employment, it says the
 decimation of the coal industry in the fighting
 would mean they would be quickly shut down,
 thereby relieving Ukraine of any subsidy costs.

Shutting down Donbass' industries would mean
 a reduction in Russian gas consumption and the
 destruction of local oligarch Rinat Akhmetov’s
 clan, and his political and economic clout.

The memorandum then lists a three stage military
 campaign to guarantee victory.

Stage 1: Suspend Constitution, impose martial law.

Stage one, called the total isolation of the rebel
 regions, presumes that all civilians who stayed
 behind are “complicit in the unrest or supportive
 of it.”

It proposes that martial law be imposed in the area
 with a strict curfew between 20:00 and 06:00, while
 all local authorities would have their competencies
 terminated and their Constitutional rights would be

The regions should then be encircled with troops
 with special attention being given to areas which
 border Russia.

On the media, it recommends that all broadcasting
 services, telephone and mobile communications
and internet services in the region should be shut
 down and that the international media should be
 “subject to a special procedure.”

Stage 2: Internment camps for male adults,
 those who resist to be killed on the spot.

Stage Two of the operation, called 'mop-up',
involves a gradual tightening of the circle
of troops round the region, followed by air-
strikes, then artillery and mortar assaults,
 against the “enemy’s” strategic facilities.

Without any apparent regard for human life,
RAND authors advise that the use of non-
conventional arms should not be ruled out
“to ensure smaller casualties among our
own personnel”.

The authors then say that settlements should
be liberated one by one with armour going in
first, followed by infantry who should shoot
to kill anyone bearing arms.

In what appears to be advising ethnic cleansing,
 all male adults should be removed to internment
 camps, while anyone attempting to resist should
 be executed; children under 13 and people over
 the age of 60 should be moved to specially
equipped facilities in other areas.

RAND then says that anyone with bruises, scuff
 marks, traces of gun powder or gun oil on their
 clothes should be tried in court for separatism
and terrorism.

Residents who don’t fall into these categories
would be allowed to return home after a period
 of two months “of internment” and would then
 be under surveillance by the security services.

Stage 3: Property of convicted and displaced
 to be nationalized.

Stage Three, called ‘Back to Normal’, says that
 all refugees “from the warzone” should then be
 allowed to return home.

 Men aged 18-60 shall be “checked” in internment
 camps, while the property of those convicted or
 displaced residents of Donetsk and Lugansk
 regions, shall be nationalized.

The area of the punitive operation shall be made
 “off limits” to foreign media, the memorandum


Syrian army recaptures Aleppo's industrial city

Syrian government forces announce that
they have fully recaptured an industrial
city in the northern province of Aleppo.

Activists say that Syrian troops carried out
 over 20 airstrikes on the city, to dislodge
 the rebels there.

Aleppo, once called Syria's economic hub,
has seen hard battles between government
troops and an array of jihadist groups.

The Syrian troops' fresh victory comes as 
al Nusra Front is deadlocked in fights with
 the Islamic State of Iraq and Levant in
Aleppo and areas in eastern Syria.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a UK-
based one-man operation in a semi in England,
says over 7,000 rebels and civilians have been
killed since earlier this year, because of rebel-
on-rebel battles.



NATO arming Ukraine with Soviet
 weapons – Deputy PM Rogozin

NATO's newest Eastern European members - on
 US orders - are handing over their Soviet arms
 stockpiles to Kiev's army, Russia’s Deputy PM,
Dmitry Rogozin, says, adding that the alliance
is in danger of pouring gasoline on the flames
of that country’s civil war.

Rogozin, who oversees Russia's military industry,
 tweets that NATO is asking its newest members
 to get rid of operable Soviet military equipment
& send it to Ukraine, to aid the miserable state
 of the country’s military hardware.

“In turn, the US is ready to "compensate" the
losses of newly coopted NATO member states.
The American military-industrial complex must
 be happy,” Rogozin writes in his Twitter account.

“By the way, this is NATO’s commonplace - to put
 out the fire of civil wars with aviation kerosene,”
 Rogozin adds.

Over the past months of Ukraine’s political crisis,
 NATO member states - primarily the US - have said
 they are sending non-lethal aid to Ukrainian troops,
 such as uniforms and tents, and even promised to
deploy a number of military instructors to train the
 Ukrainian army to fight the anti-kiev coup regions
in Eastern Ukraine.

Political commentator Mikhail Rostovsky says
 the “US and EU are thinking, not about Ukraine,
 but about the neutralization of Russia.

Rostovsky compares the current policies of the
 EU and US leaders with that of UK PM Thatcher
 and French President Mitterrand, towards the
 reunification of East and West Germany in 1990.

Speaking loudly about “the European choice for
Ukraine,” EU and US politicians are essentially
 seeking ways to drive a wedge between Moscow
 and Kiev, to neutralize what they see as Russia’s
 possible “imperial ambitions,” Rostovsky says.

“We’re dealing with politics dictated by fear: God
 forbid the Kremlin’s imperial instincts got awakened!
 This is a matter of principle: to deny the Kremlin
any opportunity, by breaking Ukraine from Russia.”

Rostovsky says he fully agrees with the German
 Foreign Minister, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, who
 told Der Spiegel in late April, that Europe has slid
 “into the worst crisis since the end of the Cold War.”

“Those who can remember the fall of the Berlin Wall
 know what we've accomplished over the past 25
 years. The gains we've made almost everywhere in
 Europe in terms of peace, freedom and prosperity,
are now at risk,” Steinmeier says, adding that that
it is important to take “every measure to prevent
things [in Ukraine] from getting worse.”


Ukraine defense minister vows
 victory parade in Crimea

The new Ukrainian defense minister has vowed
 to hold a victory parade in the Crimean port city
 of Sevastopol, which was annexed by Russia
 following a referendum in March.

Valeriy Heletey said that he would not only
restore the country's territorial integrity,
 but also hold a victory parade in Sevastopol,
 currently disputed by Moscow and Kiev.

    "We will ensure peace and harmony in our
 country. Be sure there will be many victories.
We can bring peace and harmony to our home.
I am convinced that Ukraine will win. And
 believe me, a victory parade will certainly be
 held in Ukrainian Sevastopol," Heletey told a
session of the parliament in Kiev.

Meanwhile, fighting continues between Kiev
 forces and anti-coup forces in eastern Ukraine.



As Iraqi troops battled their way into Tikrit's
centre, Saudi troops, 30,000 strong, were
reported to have moved onto Iraq's borders,
in an area now left less heavily defended by
Iraq, Saudi media allege.

That's what Saudi media says, but Baghdad
denies pulling off any guards from any borders.

Saudi state-owned news channel Al Arabiya
released a video apparently showing Iraqi
soldiers saying the government ordered them
to retreat from their positions along borders
with Syria in the west and Saudi Arabia in
the south, despite no evident danger.

“We didn’t know why,” an officer says in the
video, which was obtained by Al Arabiya’s
sister channel Al Hadath.

The reports didn’t clarify if the alleged
withdrawal included Iraq’s borders with
Jordan and Kuwait, both in the southern
part of Iraq, or Turkey in the north.

The authenticity of the video cannot be
immediately verified, but the withdrawal
report is denied by an Iraqi government

"This is false news aimed at affecting the
morale of our people and the morale of our
heroic fighters," spokesperson Lt General
Qassim Atta, tells reporters in Baghdad. He
adds that the frontier is "fully in the grip"
of Iraqi border troops.

The deployment by King Abdullah is meant
to protect the Sunni Islamic state from
potential “terrorist threats” Saudi state
news agency SPA commented.

Baghdad has received limited military assistance
from the US to battle the terrorists (ISIL) because
Washington says now "it doesn't want to" deploy
ground troops in the country it once occupied.

The idea of any such US deployment is also
objected to by Saudi Arabia, a fundamental
Sunni monarchy and long-time ally of the US.

So far, the biggest military help Iraq has
apparently received... is from Shiite Iran.


‘Thanks, Ukraine Air Force’: Bombarded
 villagers accuse Kiev of killing civilians

The village of Kondrashovka in eastern Ukraine
lies devastated, after shelling by Kiev troops
killed seven people. Bodies torn to pieces are
strewn across the settlement and those who
survived ask: why did Kiev kill their families?

At least 5 shells hit the settlement, destroying
an entire street in the peaceful Lugansk region
 community, just 25km from the city of Lugansk.

“They killed my mother, and my father is injured.
 I took him to hospital,” Aleksandr Mironenko
 told RT’s Marina Finoshina, one of the few
journalists to report from the scene.

Aleksandr was desperately showing pieces
 of human flesh scattered across his property.

“Come here - can you see this? It's a human body
 which has been torn to pieces. Let's go and film
 some more, I'll show you. Bodies everywhere,
 obviously all of them are terrorists!” he said
 sarcastically, through tears.

Next door, Kondrashovka residents told a tragic
 story of their friend, who lost his 5-year-old son.

“He celebrated his son’s 5th birthday yesterday,
today the boy's leg was cut off – I don’t know
 if he's alive or not,” said Sergey, a neighbour.

“No, no, he died, said another man.

“He died? Yes. Then he died,” adds Sergey.

Few of the village residents were left unharmed
by the shelling. One of ‘the lucky ones,’ Andrey,
said his family was not home when the shelling
 started, but his property was badly damaged.
He showed RT holes from the shells in a fence.

“What do I think? ‘Thank you, Ukrainian Air Force’,”
 he said, adding that his family would have died,
 had they been there when the attack hit.

Stunned residents ask why the government is
 targeting their peaceful village. Kiev troops
 claim they are killing ‘terrorists’, but here, that
 term includes women, children and the elderly.

“Why? There was nobody here – only peaceful
 civilians, poor people who worked from dawn
 till dusk,” says a local woman.

“We are peaceful. We don’t mind Poroshenko being
 in office,” says Irina Stasyuk, a local resident, “But
 don’t kill us. There are 12 people here.”

Yury, a veteran military pilot, had his own opinion
 on why the troops targeted the village. He said
the aircraft targeted a self-defense base, but either
 missed or intentionally fired on civilian dwellings.

“The first time the aircraft pilot got it right – there
 is a self-defense base 3km from here. He hit it,”
said Yury. “But the second time, he pulled the
 trigger a few seconds late - either by mistake,
 or he received an order to target this village. I
don’t know.”

In the meantime, the pro-Kiev Azov Battalion
deputy commander, admits that bombarding
 Kondrashovka might have been the result
 of “pilot error.”

“I think there was both pilot error and shelling from
 outside,” Igor Mosyichuk told Ukraine’s 112 Channel,
 adding that Kondrashovka turned out to be “between
 a rock and a hard place” – people’s self-defense
 forces and Kiev troops.

Even after the attack, the rest of the village is not
 safe, as during the interviews the cannonade can
 be distinctly heard.

RT crew visited the local hospital where there
is no water and electricity, as the local power
station was hit in another air raid.

“We received 13 people – four of them are already
 dead, including a five-year-old, a boy,” Maksim
 Pavlov from the central hospital says.

Among the injured is Ivan Mironenko, a father of
 Aleksandr, a local resident.

After Ivan lost his wife in the attack, he doesn’t
want to live anymore, saying he sees no point.

“Why was she killed? Why not me? Why is God
 punishing me like this?” exclaims Ivan, sobbing.

Russian authorities strongly condemn attacks
 on eastern Ukrainian civilians by Kiev forces.

Moscow demands that Ukrainian authorities stop
 shelling civilian objects in the country in order to
 save the lives of local people, said Russian FM
 Sergey Lavrov at a press conference with his
 Moroccan counterpart.

“Western countries should urge Kiev to follow the
 declaration approved in Berlin, which calls for the
 formation of a special contact group aiming at
 establishing a truce in Ukraine,” he added.

The regions of eastern Ukraine have been
 continuously targeted by Kiev troops in

Fearing a deepening of the crisis, scores of
 refugees have left the country. The number
 of Ukrainian refugees in Russia has reached
110,000 people, the UN’s refugee dept. said,
on June 27th.


Shells devastate entire streets
in eastern Ukrainian town

Eyewitnesses in the Cossack settlement of
Luganskaya accuse government forces of
committing airstrikes on densely-populated
 residential areas.

Kiev says the devastation is the result of
 shelling by anti-coup forces.


Kiev govt, Russia, Germany, France
 agree East Ukraine ceasefire

A roadmap of measures that point a way out
of the Ukraine crisis, has been agreed during
 four-way talks between the foreign ministers
of Germany, France, Russia and Ukraine, the
German FM, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, says.

In their joint statement, ministers call for
 the Contact Group to resume its work “no
 later than July 5 with the goal of reaching
an unconditional and mutually agreed,
 sustainable ceasefire.”

The group should include representatives of
 both Kiev and the self-defense forces of the
 People’s Republics of Donetsk and Lugansk,
Russia’s foreign minister, Sergey Lavrov, says.

“The ceasefire should be monitored by the
OSCE Special Monitoring Mission in Ukraine,
 in conformity with its mandate,” their joint
 statement reads.

Lavrov says that the ceasefire is essential to
prevent further casualties among the civilian
 population, and to provide the chance of
 reaching an agreement between all sides
 in the conflict.

Moscow is ready to grant Ukraine border guards
 access to Russian territory, so they can control
 border crossings at several checkpoints, while
 the mutually agreed ceasefire is in place.

The Organization for Security and Cooperation
 in Europe (OSCE) is called upon to deploy
 observers at the checkpoints.

“Of course, this will work only during a ceasefire.
 It will all be possible only after the ceasefire is
 agreed and officially declared,” Lavrov says.

The Russian FM insists that the ceasefire must
 in no way be used to redeploy forces by either
 side involved in the Ukrainian conflict.

"All sides must contribute to a secure environment,"
 the joint statement concludes, emphasizing a need
 to ensure the safety and security of journalists
 working in the conflict zone.

Steinmeier expresses hope that, by working
 together, the sides will be able to stop “the
 escalation of the conflict, which has taken
 place in recent days.”

Mission accomplished?

Ukraine’s foreign minister, Pavlo Klimkin, confirms
 that during the Berlin talks the parties agreed “the
 establishment of a bilateral ceasefire, which will
 be monitored by the OSCE.”

However, he says that de-escalation will only
 happen when the Ukrainian president’s peace
 plan is respected in its totality.

Klimkin also expresses hope that “the
 effectiveness of control over the border
 regime between the Ukraine and Russia
 will be strengthened,” as a result of the
 Berlin agreements.

French foreign minister, Laurent Fabius,
describes the outcome of the talks as
“mission accomplished.”

“Our task is, first of all, to achieve peace and
 security. I think that the agreement the four
 countries reached is a step in the right
direction,” he says.

According to Fabius, the most important issues
 to be addressed in Ukraine are the “ceasefire;
the release of hostages and a border settlement.


US commander’s accusations toward Russia aimed
 at justifying ceasefire break by Ukraine – Moscow

The accusations by Supreme Allied Commander,
 Europe, US General Philip Breedlove, who blamed
 Russia for destabilizing the situation in Ukraine,
are aimed at justifying the breaking of the cease-
fire in southeast Ukraine by the country’s army,
the Russian Foreign Ministry says.

 “We think it is absolutely unacceptable when a
 military representative of such a high rank gets
 involved in an information & propaganda campaign
 by spreading false information about the situation
 on the Russian-Ukrainian border,” says Foreign
 Ministry spokesperson, Aleksandr Lukashevich.

He adds that no convincing proof of a Russian
 military buildup along the border with Ukraine
 was presented.



President Putin says Poroshenko's
declaration of "war to
the end" on
the anti-coup forces in
cuts across the wishes of
major powers, Germany
and France.

He suggests that "an outside
influence" is to blame.

In a speech to Russia's ambassadors,
he asks if anyone is happy with the
West's attempts to "turn the whole
world into a military barracks".


There is focused effort to liquidate
 journalists in Ukraine — Putin

At least three Russian journalists covering
 developments in Ukraine’s embattled south-
eastern regions were killed in June.


Japan's Abe in a dangerous coup
 against the pacifist Constitution
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has now
completed a dangerous coup, to overturn the
country's post-war pacifism and democratic

He has released Japan's legally tethered military
 and war will, from a war-renouncing Constitution.

His move drastically changes Japan's defense
 stance since the end of World War II, and could
 see the country dragged into bloody conflicts
 in the near future.

Japan's new collective self-defence stance,
  breaks its internationally-recognized anti-war
 constitution, as Article 9 reads "the Japanese
 people forever renounce war as a sovereign
 right of the nation and the threat or use of
force as a means of settling international

"To accomplish the aim of the preceding
paragraph, land, sea, and air forces, as
 well as other war potential, will never
be maintained. The right of belligerency
of the state will not be recognized."

Abe avoided the normal procedures to amend
 the Constitution by accepting broad "conditions
to the use of force,"  not the original "conditions
to launch self-defense", thereby violating the
of Japan's Constitution.

Abe's coup against the Constitution exposes
 his scorn for public opinion, as many surveys
 conducted by Japanese mainstream media
 show nearly 70% of Japanese oppose Abe's
 plot to exercise 'collective defense' through
 reinterpreting the constitution, and over 60%
 are against allowing the SDF to engage in
 war outside Japan, through any means.

Abe's trusted follower, deputy PM Taro Aso
talked earlier about changing the no-war
constitution, but suggested that Japan...
should do it quietly...

 "Just as in one day the Weimar constitution
 changed to the Nazi constitution --- without
 anyone realizing it --- why don't we learn
from that sort of tactic?" Aso suggested.

Now Abe has reached his goal through
such "Nazi tactics," having hollowed
the Constitution's Article 9 and over-
thrown the country's peaceful path in
the postwar era.

Abe's visit to the war-linked Yasukuni Shrine,
which honours 14 convicted Japanese war
criminals from WW2, also challenged the
 judgments of the International Military
Tribunal for the Far East, and his claim to
 islands disputed with Japan's neighbours,
the essence of both the Cairo
and the Potsdam Proclamation.

Now, Abe's final volume of his "postwar
 remilitarization trilogy" is completed ---
  tearing up Japan's peaceful commitment
 to the international community --- as the
 resolution on collective defense, has
now been voted through.

A Japanese lawmaker bemoans that
the "dusk of the Weimar Constitution"
is now repeated --- in Japan.

 One can only hope that the dusk of Japan's
 pacifist constitution will not lead to the entire
 collapse of the postwar international system.


Southeastern militiamen shoot down

Ukrainian attack aircraft - eyewitnesses

Militiamen of the self-proclaimed Lugansk People’s
 Republic (LPR) have shot down a Sukhoi Su-27 air
 superiority fighter, militiamen said.

2 pilots of the plane ejected, militia representatives
 said. LPR soldiers are currently combing the terrain
 in search of the pilots near the Luganskaya village,
 where the aircraft earlier fired a shot.

Hundreds of people have been killed, buildings
 destroyed and tens of thousands forced to flee
 Ukraine to Russia as a result of Kiev’s military
 operation against federalization supporters in
 Ukraine’s embattled South-east involving
 armored vehicles, heavy artillery and attack
 aviation, which has been conducted since

Fierce military attacks by pro-Kiev forces on
 the country’s southeastern regions resumed
after Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko
decided to end the 10-day ceasefire in the
South-east. There were numerous reports
that the truce was repeatedly
violated by...

The Donetsk and Lugansk regions, which border
on Russia, held referendums on May 11, in which
 most voters supported independence from Ukraine.

 South Ossetia has recognized the self-proclaimed
 Donetsk People's Republic (DPR) and the Lugansk
 People's Republic (LPR).



Behind the Scenes: Turkey Trying
 to Strike Deal with Kurds on Iraq

Military intelligence experts estimate that the fall
 of hundreds of villages in Aleppo countryside by
government forces will take place soon, after the
Takfiris recently received devastating blows in
 many Syrian districts.
Qatari authorities are trying again to explore
 the possibility of a reconciliation with the
Syrian government.
Turkish authorities are trying to strike a deal
 with the Kurds in Iraq, to benefit from recent
 developments in Mosul. The ISIL occupation
of Mosul has reinvigorated Turkish ambitions
 to annex parts of Iraq's provinces to Turkey.
Over 5,000 Takfiri members were killed in
continuing fights between different military
 groups in Syria, especially ISIL and Al-Nusra.


UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon says:

 "Throughout the years of its independence,
Ukraine did not bother to officially register
 its borders as that of a sovereign state."

 There has been, and can be, no violation
 of the Ukrainian border by Russia. Under
 the CIS agreement, Ukraine's territory  
only has administrative borders as set
within the USSR, while Russia is a legal
 successor to the USSR, Nezavisimaya
Gazeta points out today.

According to the paper, it's now impossible
 in principle, to accuse anyone of violating
Ukraine's borders because, "as far as the
 international law is concerned, the country
 simply does not have an officially set border."

 In order to resolve this problem, the newspaper
 says, Kiev must agree on border demarcation
with all neighboring states, including Russia.

Although Kiev is trying to carry out unilateral
 demarcation, "it will be null and void from the
point of view of international law."


Ukraine president terminates ceasefire!!!

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has decided
 not to prolong a ceasefire with Donetsk & Lugansk
 People’s Republics, announcing the end of a fragile
 deal to de-escalate tensions in the eastern regions
 of the country.

“We will attack & will free our land,” Poroshenko
 said. The ceasefire officially ended at 19:00 GMT,
 according to a statement that appeared on the
 president’s website shortly after midnight.

Hours before the ceasefire, and since,
heavy shelling and intense shooting
is reported in the city of Kramatorsk
in the Donetsk region.

“The shelling started at 22:25 local time,”
US photographer, Patrick Lancaster,
'phones in from Kramatorsk.

“We are in the basement of the Kramatorsk Hotel.
 About 2 hours ago, mortaring started on the centre
 of the city. Each wave lasted anywhere between 5
 to 20 minutes, and there were 3 different waves
of mortars. I do not have any direct information
 about the wounded or killed, but there were so
many explosions, that I really think there's a
 large number of casualties.”

Itar-Tass's source says the attack by Kiev
 troops began at 19:30 GMT. The Ukrainian
 military claims it was Self-Defence militia
 who attacked first, killing several service

The newly-elected president (in a 40% vote)
says that the decision to unilaterally end the
 ceasefire was taken after meeting Ukraine's
 National Security and Defense Council.

 Poroshenko says “peace” is the end game,
but the “tools” of achieving it have changed:

“Protection of Ukraine's territorial integrity,
security and lives of civilians requires not
 only defensive, but offensive acts against

 “Armed Forces, the National Guard, the State
 Border Service, the Security Service, have
 received their appropriate orders,” he says,
adding that they “are no longer constrained
 by the ceasefire.”

“Non-renewal of the ceasefire is our response
 to terrorists, rebels, looters, all those who
 torment the civilians, who paralyze the
 economy of the region, who disturb the
 payment of salaries, pensions, stipends,
who undermine the railroads, destroy
water pipes, those who deprive people
 of a normal peaceful life,” Poroshenko
 said in an address to the nation.

Poroshenko puts all the blame for the truce
 failure on representatives of Donetsk and
Lugansk militias, claiming they violated the
 ceasefire “over 100 times,” thus losing this
 “unique opportunity” to fulfill a peace plan.

Poroshenko added that within the timeframe
of the temporary truce, international support
 for Ukraine's actions grew stronger, as Kiev
 managed to sign an EU Association Agreement.

“The political leaders of the separatists
 demonstrated an unwillingness and an
inability to control the actions of their
 terrorist units and gangs of looters,”
 Poroshenko said.

"Ukrainian Armed Forces, National Guard &
 other units, will never allow themselves to
 use force against peaceful people. They
never assault residential quarters.

 "Ukrainian soldiers and guards will risk
 their lives, not to expose to danger,
 women, children and elderly people,"
 Poroshenko said, adding, "such is the
eternal nature of Ukraine's military

150,000 civilians have now fled Ukraine,
after residential areas were pounded by
artillery, rockets, phosphorous flares,
tank shells, ground attack planes and
 military assault helicopters.



Iran's defense minister says terrorists of the
 so-called Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant
(ISIL) & their supporters must be put on trial
as “war criminals.”

“Murder, plunder, aggression, destruction, mass
 execution and the displacement of thousands of
 innocent people in Iraq & Syria are clear examples
 of war crimes,” Brigadier General Hossein Dehqan
 says to media.

He adds that such criminal acts combined with
the silence and inaction of the so-called human
rights advocates & international organizations
 "have butchered the security of the region."

The official emphasizes that such crimes are
 being committed to create a safe haven for
 the Israeli regime and to undermine the
resistance against
Tel Aviv's illegal acts.

The Iranian minister said the ISIL will have
destiny worse than that of the executed
dictator, Saddam Hussein, and that
terrorist group’s inhuman measures
definitely backfire on its supporters.

Dehqan stresses the importance of strengthening
 unity among all Iraqi ethnicities and groups... to
 maintain the country’s integrity, and secure its
 national interests, noting that foreign countries
 interfering in Iraq’s internal affairs are not
 interested in the country’s dignity and

Dehqan expresses Iran's support for the territorial
 integrity of Iraq, saying, “The Islamic Iran seeks
 a unified, united, secure and advanced Iraq and
 will support any measure in this regard.”



Iraq's army, backed by thousands of Christian
volunteers, has pushed back Takfiri terrorists
of the so-called Islamic State of Iraq and the
Levant (ISIL) from a strategic area in
Salahuddin Province.

Iraqi security officials say army troops retook
the village of Awja in Salahuddin Province on
Monday, adding that the village, south of Tikrit,
is entirely under the army’s control.

Meanwhile, Iraqi helicopters have hit ISIL
positions and hideouts in the areas
surrounding Tikrit.

The Iraqi army and tribal fighters have also
retaken full control of Tikrit from the ISIL

Elsewhere in Aqlawi district of Anbar Province,
some 140 Takfiri militants were killed in an
ongoing massive military operation.

 Iraqi armed forces have managed to liberate
the town of Deli Abbas in Diyala Province.

The latest operation comes days after thousands of
Iraqis fled their homes after militants from the ISIL
 attacked Christian areas and minority communities
in northern Iraq.


Peshmerga fighters attack Iraq army.

A senior Iraqi military commander says Kurdish
 Peshmerga forces have seized heavy weapons
 and military equipment in Kirkuk governorate.

Lieutenant Abdul Amir al-Zaidi says that
Kurdish forces attacked military bases
 and disrupted security in Diyala and Kirkuk.

This comes after the president of the semi-
autonomous Kurdistan Regional Government
 (KRG) said that the KRG will not return the oil-
rich hub of Kirkuk to Baghdad.

Masoud Barzani’s comments sparked angry
 reactions from some Iraqi politicians who
 warned of an armed conflict with the Kurds
 in the near future. Also, some lawmakers
 have accused the Kurdish forces of having
 relations with Israel.

Kurdish security forces took control of Kirkuk
 after Iraqi troops entered a battle with the so-
called Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant
 (ISIL) earlier this month.

The latest developments come as tensions
 rise between Kurdistan’s regional leaders
 and the central government in Baghdad. 

Iraq's government slammed Kurdistan region
for exporting oil without Baghdad’s consent.

Baghdad says it has the sole right to export
 the country’s crude, but the Kurds say they
 are entitled to market the resources of
their own region.

The regional government has recently used
 a pipeline to the Turkish port city of Ceyhan
 for crude oil exports.

A spokesperson for the region says the
 cash is being held by Turkey's Halkbank.

Most refineries are reluctant to get involved
in the trade which Iraq's central government
 has called smuggling.

Baghdad has started arbitration against
 Turkey for facilitating the sales and has
 threatened to pursue the buyers.

Israeli PM Netanyahu endorses Kurdish
 independence "because of chaos in Iraq"

Citing Iraq's “collapse”, Israel's Netanyahu
 endorses the de-facto independence of Iraqi
Kurds today, and calls for support for the
 “Kurdish aspiration for independence.”



In a telephone conversation, German
Chancellor Angela Merkel and
President Francois Hollande joined

 Putin to ask Ukraine's President Petro
 Poroshenko to extend a ceasefire.

But about 1,000 neo-fascist supporters
shouted "We want war!" repeatedly,
in front of government buildings
in Kiev's Maidan Square.


S. Korean 'comfort women' for US military
 sue state for forced prostitution

A group of South Korean former “comfort women”,
who worked in state-controlled brothels for the US
military after the 1953 Korean War, has filed a suit
demanding compensation from the authorities for
forced prostitution.



Self-defence forces of Donetsk People’s Republic
 have taken control of an army missile defence unit
 equipped with Buk missile defence systems, the
 press service of Donetsk People’s Republic says.

The Buk missile defence system is a mobile
 medium-range surface-to-air missile (SAM)
 system designed to defend field troops and
 logistics installations against air threats
 using heavy electronic countermeasures
 and within intense enemy fire.



Russia says it will not stand idly by in the face
 of terrorist groups who're attempting to spread
 terrorism in the Middle East.

Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov
 warns the US and Europe that terrorist groups
are becoming a serious risk to several Middle
 Eastern countries.
"Russia will not remain passive to attempts
 by some groups to spread terrorism in the
 region," he tells journalists after a meeting
 with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

"The situation is very dangerous in Iraq and
 the foundations of the Iraqi state are under
 threat," he added.

A solution must be found and prompt measures
 taken to stem the flow of militants into the US
 and European countries from abroad, he said.

In the last few days, Iraqi armed forces have
 engaged in fierce clashes with the terrorists,
  threatened to take their acts of violence to
 other Iraqi cities, including the capital.

Now their advance has been slowed down as
 Iraqi military forces & volunteer fighters have
 begun engaging them on several fronts...
pushing terrorist
s out of areas they overran.



Iraq's government has received the first
 Russian-made Sukhoi fighter planes to use
against terrorists from the so-called Islamic
 State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).

Iraqi army sources said the fighter jets are
expected to be stationed at
an airbase in
the country's south.

Iraq has purchased several used Sukhoi
fighter planes from Belarus and Russia.

Iraq’s PM, Nouri al-Maliki, said earlier that
 these Sukhoi fighter jets will turn the tide
 against ISIL and its associated militant
 groups --- within days.

Iraq's army continues to pound  ISIL positions
after retaking Tikrit, killing dozens of militants.

Iraqi officials also confirm that Khalis town
is now fully controlled by Iraq's armed forces.
Khalis lies 15 kilometers north of Baquba and
one of the six districts of Diyala Province.

Iraq's army took full control of all areas in the
east, except Sa’adiyah district.

The army
say large numbers of ISIL militants
were killed in
the flashpoint province during
army operations.

Soldiers of the Iraqi army have so far been
able to push back militants in several areas.

PM Maliki vows that Iraq’s security forces
 will confront all the foreign-sponsored
militants successfully.



A Russian official says Moscow seeks
common ground in forthcoming talks
 with Ukraine and the European Union,
 over Kiev’s association with the bloc.

Moscow has expressed hope that officials
from Russia, Ukraine and the EU will find
understanding” at upcoming rounds
of technical
and expert consultations and
meetings scheduled for both this
week and
next month.

“There's a need for a substantive, technical,
 expert dialogue on how to avoid worsening
 the economic climate in Russia-Ukraine
amid the signing of this deal, and
what steps the
sides should take,” Russia's
deputy foreign
minister Alexei Meshkov said.

The official warned, however, that the move
 could disrupt cooperation between Ukrainian
 and Russian companies.

Meshkov recommended that some
 approaches be revised.

The statement came one day after an EU
summit in Brussels, where the Ukraine
President, Petro Poroshenko, signed a
 trade and political association deal
the EU.

The Kremlin has warned that it will take
if it inflicts damage on Russia's

In November, Ukraine fell into chaos after
then president, Viktor Yanukovych, refused
sign an Association Agreement with the
member bloc. The refusal led to months
of unrest and clashes, and resulted in the
ousting of Yanukovych on February 23rd.

The US stands accused of deliberately
overthrowing Yanukovich's government
by using violence and supporting  neo-
nazi forces, like the Right Sector, and
extremist groups, to gain control
Ukraine, push the EU to reject close
economic and energy ties with Russia,
and keep accepting US leadership...

The US Vice-President's son, for example, now
heads Ukraine's largest gas supply company...

After the US-backed coup, protests
broke out
in Ukraine’s east and south.

The protests gained momentum after
independence referendums in eastern
 parts of Ukraine led to new Republics.

Ukrainian troops have been carrying
 out military operations since mid-April
 to crush dissent in the eastern regions.


Release or charge hunger-striking Palestinian

 detainees now – UN chief Ban Ki Moon to Israel

Over 290 Palestinian detainees in Israeli prisons
 have been on a hunger strike since April, over
 their indefinite detention. Now the UN General
Secretary Ban-Ki moon demands that Tel Aviv
 must either charge administrative inmates or
 release them “without delay.”

“The Secretary-General is concerned about
reports regarding the deteriorating health
of Palestinian administrative detainees who
 have been on hunger strike for over a month,”
 Ban’s spokesperson, Stephane Dujarric, says
 in a statement.

The UN Secretary-General “reiterates his long-
standing position that administrative detainees
 should be charged or released without delay,”
he adds.

The spokesperson says Ban has noted
 the recent concerns issued by different
 human rights bodies and “has responded,
reiterating the UN's well known positions.”

Members of a UN Special Committee which
 monitors human rights violations inflicted
on Palestinians in the occupied territories,
 called upon Israeli authorities “to heed the
demand of the hunger strikers to end the
practice of arbitrary administrative detention
 of Palestinians,” a committee statement said.

“It is a desperate plea by these detainees to be
 afforded a very basic standard of due process:
to know what they are accused of and be able
 to defend themselves,” the committee said.

According to the UN body, the Israeli regime
 has detained “a large number of Palestinians
 for reasons not explicitly indicated.”

The first protests among Palestinian detainees
 started on April 24th, when a group of 100
prisoners launched a peaceful protest, the
UN Special Committee said.

 The inmates were “inspired” by their months
 and years in detention in Israel without being
 charged with any crimes. Now the number of
 hunger strikers has reached 290. At least 65
 prisoners have been hospitalized as a result
 of the strike.

The UN committee says that among the inmates
there are 11 Palestinian legislators, including
eight held under administrative detention.

“Given that there are over 5,000 Palestinian
 detainees in Israeli custody, we strongly
 appeal to the Israeli authorities to allow all
 Palestinian detainees, especially women
and children, to be periodically seen by
Palestinian doctors, in order to avoid losing
more lives,” the Committee said.



Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko says
 there will be no compromise with Russia on
 a pro-European policy for his administration
--- or over the status of Crimea.

Delivering an inaugural speech, Saturday,
 Poroshenko says Crimea, which joined the
Russian Federation after a referendum...
 “has been, and will remain, Ukrainian.”

“I put that clearly to the Russian leader
 in Normandy,” he added, referring to his
 meeting with President Vladimir Putin
at the D-Day commemoration in France,
on Friday.

Nearly 97% of Crimean voters said yes
 to joining Russia in a March referendum.

Speaking in parliament, Poroshenko vowed
 dialogue with citizens in eastern regions.
He also promised residents of Donbass,
 that he will decentralize power.

The Ukrainian president also promised
 “new opportunities” for the use of the
Russian language, without details.

He also pledged amnesty “for those
 who don't have blood on their hands.”

Western countries have promised to
 support Poroshenko, following his
election victory on May 25th.

The US has now (officially) sent
military advisors, to instruct
Ukraine's armed forces.

The new Ukraine president faces huge
 challenges, including the "tug of war"
 between Russia and the West and the
 ongoing unrest in Ukraine’s east,
with pro-federalist activists.

Ukraine’s mainly Russian-speaking
 regions in the east have seen deadly
 clashes, ever since Kiev launched its
 military operation there, in mid-April.

Ukraine has been gripped by violence
 since November 2013, when ousted
 president Victor Yanukovych refused
to sign an Association Agreement with
 the European Union, as the EU insisted
on Ukraine snapping its economic ties
with Russia.



Implementation of any of the Geneva accords
 hasn't been going well. The Kiev mayor Vitali
 Klitschko, can't even control the gangs in Kiev.

His attempt to remove the protest camp on
the city's main square has failed. There is an
 increasing incidence of banditry, robbery and
 hostile takeovers all over Ukraine, including
 in Dnepropetrovsk, Russian diplomats say.



80 killed in Iraq as security forces
 re-take city of Samarra

A total of 80 people were killed and some
 88 wounded in separate attacks in Iraq,
Thursday, as Iraqi security forces re-took
Samarra city in Salahudin province, which
was seized by extremist Sunni insurgents
 early in the morning, security and medical
 sources say, Xinhua reports.

The troops carried out a major offensive and
after fierce clashes they managed to regain
 six neighborhoods in Samarra, 120 km north
 of the Iraqi capital Baghdad, seized earlier by
 groups of gunmen believed to be linked to
 Islamic State in Iraq and Levant (ISIL), an
al-Qaida breakaway group in Iraq, a source
 in Salahudin province's police, tells Xinhua.

In the early morning, dozens of insurgents
entered the city in their trucks, some with
 heavy machine-guns, and attacked security
 checkpoints and police stations, killing up
to 9 police and wounding about 45 people,
 the source says.

Some attacked the house of Abdul-Karim
 al- Samarraie, Minister of Science and
Technology, killing three of his guards
before leaving the house, which was
empty of guests, the source adds.

Major General Sabah al-Fatlawi, Commander
 of Samarra Operation Command, says that his
 troops and helicopters killed 11 militants and
 destroyed more than eight vehicles during the
 morning battles, and that reinforcement troops
are still arriving from Baghdad and other
provinces, to defeat the gunmen.

The gunmen raised their black ISIL flag on
 several government buildings and the main
Sunni mosque, & announced the "liberation"
of the city by loudspeakers, urging residents
 to join a jihad against the Shiite government.

Iraqi security forces surround the Shiite
 shrine, and the HQ of Samarra's Operations
 Command, to stop insurgents from reaching
 such sensitive targets... and now wait for
 reinforcements to prepare a counter-attack.

On Feb. 22nd, in 2006, Samarra's shrine, also
 called the Golden Mosque, was hit by a bomb
 attack in which its 100-year-old Golden Dome
 was badly damaged.

In 2007, insurgents again bombed the two
 minarets of the shrine. The attacks sparked
 reprisal killings between the Shiite & Sunni
 communities, that claimed the lives of
 hundreds of thousands of Iraqis.

The major attack by insurgents in Samarra
 prompted the authorities in Nineveh and its
 capital Mosul, 400 km north of Baghdad, to
 tighten security and impose a city curfew,
 as security forces and helicopter gunships
 carried out preemptive strikes, Mohammed
 Ibrahim, head of the security committee of
 the provincial council, tells Xinhua.

The offensive in Nineveh killed 40 militants
and destroyed 12 vehicles, Ibrahim says.

Also in the day, a suicide bomber drove his
 explosive-laden car into a police checkpoint
 in the western city of Baiji, 200 km north of
Baghdad, leaving a police officer killed and
 four policemen wounded, the source from
Salahudin Operations Command tells Xinhua.

Groups of gunmen attacked several army
 checkpoints in Baiji, killing two soldiers
 and wounding five others, the source says.

In Anbar province, airstrikes, artillery and
 mortar shells struck several neighborhoods
in Fallujah, 50 km west of Baghdad, from mid-
night until Thursday morning and left eight
 people killed and nine others wounded, a
medical source from the city hospital says.

Elsewhere, three mortar rounds landed on
 the local government building in Tarmiyah,
 40 km north of Baghdad, killing three people
 and wounding six, a police source says.

2 employees and a policeman were wounded
 by the mortar barrage, which also damaged
 parts of the building, the source says.

In a separate incident, a roadside bomb went
 off near an army patrol, on a main road near
 Tarmiyah, destroying a military vehicle and
 leaving one soldier killed and three injured,
the source adds.

Separately, a car bomb detonated at the
wholesale market of Jamilah in the Shiite
 bastion of Sadr City district in Baghdad,
 killing one civilian and wounding ten,
 damaging several nearby shops and
 buildings, a police source says.

In another incident, a civilian was killed
 and six others wounded, when a roadside
 bomb hit Mahmoudiyah city, 30 km south
 of Baghdad, a local police source says.

Iraq is seeing its worst violence in years.
The UN Assistance Mission for Iraq, says
8,868 Iraqis, including 7,818 civilians and
civilian police, were killed in 2013, alone.



China's Foreign Ministry says China will
respond immediately to any provocation
 against the country’s territory.

Foreign Ministry spokesperson, Hong Lei,
is speaking after a recent statement by
 the G7, a self-described group of "leading
 industrialized nations", expressing their
 "concern" over tensions in the East and
South China seas.

Hong says his country is one of the
 supporters of peace and stability in
the region, that abides by the UN
 Charter and international law.

He adds that China will defend its maritime
 borders according to international law and
 conventions, and expresses readiness to
resolve any differences over the disputed
 South China Sea, through holding talks...
 with the countries concerned.

Hong stresses that countries outside
 the region should deal with the issue
objectively & avoid stoking tensions.


Arab nations praise Xi's keynote
speech at cooperation forum
Chinese President Xi Jinping's address at a
 ministerial meeting between China and Arab
 countries will help the two sides accelerate
 win-win cooperation, Arab officials and
experts say.

Xi called on the two sides to carry forward
 the "spirit of the Silk Road" and deepen
their cooperation.

Ghanim al-Shibli, head of the Arab League
 mission in China, said Xi's proposal on the
 Silk Road Economic Belt and 21st Century
 Maritime Silk Road, "One Belt & One Road"
 for short, laid a solid foundation for deeper
 China-Arab friendly cooperation & will serve
 as a new starting point for the China/Arab
forum since its establishment 10 years ago.

The AL will make more efforts with China
 to push forward the construction of the
 "One Belt and One Road," he added.

Moroccan Foreign Minister Salaheddin Mezouar
 said he fully supports Xi's proposal, saying it
 will aid a regional and comprehensive system
 of cooperation.

He voiced his hope that the proposal will
 promote exchanges among the countries in
 such fields as trade, science and technology.

Ibrahim Seif, Jordan's Minister of Planning
 and International Cooperation, said it paves
 the way for new cooperation between China
 and the Arab world, adding that it enhances
 cooperation in the economic, commercial
and cultural fields.

"We in Jordan are very interested in developing
 our relations with China and we are working on
 implementing agreements reached between
leaders of China and Jordan, to expand
Seif said.

Mohamed Ibrahim al-Saket, the former AL
ambassador to China, said  "China has
 prompted on many occasions, win-win
cooperation, which means the country
 doesn't only seek its development, but
 also enables the others to grow," he said.

He added that through such fora, China will
 reach more agreements with Arab nations
 at all levels, especially in the economic field.

"But the forum today stressed the importance
 of reviving the Silk Road, which will provide
the countries through which the old Silk Road
 passes, with common services & development
 investments in many different logistic fields, eg
 railways, ports and trade exchange, which, in
turn will create job opportunities," he said.

In building the "One Belt and One Road,"
China & the Arab nations will create better
 people-to-people communication, he noted.

"Xi's speech signals positive messages to
the Middle East and Arab countries," he said.

Ibrahim al-Ameri, professor of politics at
 Baghdad University, said Xi's proposal
 would boost economic, social & cultural
 cooperation for China and the Arab world.

"I believe that the call of the Chinese president
 to promote cooperation is a logical call, and is
 a great opportunity for Arab countries, including
 my country Iraq, to grab it, in order to build our
own prosperity and live in peace and harmony
with other nations," he said.

As the proposed new Silk Roads will pass
 several Arab countries & cross Arab seas,
 such as the Gulf of Aden and the Red Sea,
China and the Arab nations will do well to
better in building some major
 projects, al-Ameri said.

Ahmed Hashem Bahrozyan, chair of Dubai
 International Project Management Forum
the United Arab Emirates (UAE), said Xi's
speech was constructive & has a guiding
 significance for relations between China
and the
Arab countries.

The UAE and China have witnessed rapid
 development in their trade and economic
ties and conducted sound cooperation in
 such fields as energy and infrastructure,
 he said.

He called on the two countries to continue
 to strengthen exchanges in various fields
with the help of the proposed "One Belt
 and One Road" mechanism.

Mahmoud Sharif, an expert of international
 relations in Libya, said his country benefits
 from the cooperation forum's achievements
--- and from China's rapid development.

Libya hopes to maintain a high-level, steady
 cooperative relationship with China, he said.


Israeli doctors refuse to force-feed
Palestinian prisoners, despite govt pressure

Israeli doctors say they won't begin force-feeding
 Palestinian detainees who've launched a hunger
strike, putting medical professionals on a collision
 course with PM Benjamin Netanyahu's government.

65 of 290 striking prisoners are hospitalized as
a result of the hunger strike, a plight inspired by
  months and years in detention in Israel without
being charged with any crimes.

 Daily rallies have been held in support of the
 prisoners by the Palestinian community.

As a result of the growing hunger strike, PM
 Netanyahu has reportedly asked the government
 to speed up a bill giving them permission to force-
feed the dozens of hospitalized inmates. This will
 give a judge permission to enact force-feeding if
 they consider the inmate is putting his life at risk.

Yoel Hadar, a legal adviser to the Netanyahu
 administration, says the bill will also force a
 judge to consider if an inmate is deemed to
be putting the interests of the state at risk
(the death of a hunger-striker would almost
certainly add to the unrest in the Palestinian
 Territories and contribute to criticism about
 Israel's policy on this matter).

“We want the judge to take into consideration
what will happen to the country if something
 happens,” he says. “People go on a hunger
strike for political reasons - the consequence
could be political damage to the state. The
state also has the right to stop the strike.”

Netanyahu says he is confident the force-
will eventually be executed, citing
the US's
force-feeding of hunger-strikers,
at Guantanamo
Bay prison, in Cuba.

 Guantanamo's policy has drawn criticism from the
 UN human rights office, which says it constitutes
 torture and is thus a violation of international law.

Family members of the inmates say they support
 their relatives' hunger strike, if only because the
 detainees face no other alternative...

 Lamees Faraj says her husband, Abdel Razeg,
once a member of the PLO, has been locked up
 in administrative detention, for almost eight of
 the past 20 years.

“My husband is in Israeli jails without knowing
 why and when, this nightmare is going to end,”
 she says.

Family members who are opposed to force-
feeding, a brutal process in which a person
is fed via a tube forced into their nose, now
 have support from a growing number of
medical groups and organizations.

The Israel Medical Association has asked its
 doctors not to follow orders from government
officials, asking them to force feed an inmate.

The World Medical Association, a group many
 national associations fall under says “force-
is never ethically acceptable.”

“It goes against the DNA of the doctors, to force
 treatment on patients,” Israel Medical Association
 spokesperson Ziva Miral says... “Force-feeding is
 torture, and we can't have doctors participating
in torture.”

There are now an estimated 900 Palestinians
 currently imprisoned in Israel, which claims it
 has no choice but to lock up its enemies, to
 prevent attacks on the military.

 One tactic the Israeli government uses now,
 is administrative segregation, which includes
intermittently imprisoning detainees for long
 periods, under the guise of security.

“It is outrageous that Israel has locked these
 men up for months without either charging them
 with crimes or allowing them to see the evidence
 it says it has against them,” Sarah Lee Whitson,
 the Middle East director at Human Rights Watch,
 said in a letter to the US Congress.

“The detainees evidently feel they have to put their
 lives in jeopardy through hunger strikes so that
 Israel will end these unlawful practices. Israel's
 regular use of administrative detention, at the
least, inverts international law and turns the
exception into the norm, at the cost of the
fundamental right to due process.”



Israel now announces that 1,800 more
housing units are to be built on the West
Bank, in a further land grab condemned
by the world as illegal.


Russia’s Medvedev: G7 Support for
 Ukraine ’Cynicism without Limit’

Russian PM, Dmitry Medvedev on Thursday
 accuses the G7 of "cynicism withour limit"
for backing Ukraine's military operation
against pro-federalization activists.

"The so-called G7 even talks of the 'measured'
 actions of the Ukrainian army against its own
 people," Medvedev tells ministers, quoted by
the Interfax news agency.

"This is cynicism without limit."

In a joint communique released at a G7 summit
 in Brussels on Wednesday, the West's politicians
 encouraged Ukraine to "maintain a measured
 approach in pursuing operations to restore law
 and order."

They called on Russia to "stop the flow of weapons
 and militants across the border and to exercise its
 influence among the armed separatists to lay down
 their weapons and renounce violence."

Germany's Chancellor, Angela Merkel, says
severe trade sanctions are an option now.


NATO troops and bases not welcome
 in Slovakia and Czech Republic

Two Eastern European nations, Slovakia
and the Czech Republic, refuse to host
NATO troops and military bases.

 The prime ministers of both countries have
 both spoken against the proposal, mooted
 by US President Barack Obama.

Following the example of their neighbour, the
Czech Republic, the PM of Slovakia says that
 that his country is ready to meet its obligations
as a NATO member state, but stationing foreign
 troops on its territory. is out of the question.

Slovak PM Robert Fico says he “can’t imagine
 foreign troops being deployed on our territory
 in the form of some bases.”

The proposal to host more NATO troops in
 Eastern Europe, was voiced by Obama, on
 his current tour of Europe.

Initially, it was Poland that asked for a
 greater US military presence in E. Europe.

In April, Polish Defense Minister Tomasz
Siemoniak called on the Pentagon to deploy
 as many as 10,000 US troops in his country.

Three Baltic States welcomed the idea back
in April. To begin with, a small contingent of
 US troops arriveD in Lithuania, Latvia and
Estonia, to take part in military training.

On Tuesday, Czech Prime Minister, Bohuslav
 Sobotka, said that his country sees no need to
 allow a foreign military presence on its territory.

Last month, Defense Minister Martin Stropinsky
 sparked a political storm in the Czech Republic
 by recalling the 1968 invasion as the biggest
 reason not to host NATO troops in the country,
 in a Reuters interview.

Slovakia’s Fico joined in the debate on
Wednesday, saying that, for his country,
 such a military presence is sensitive,
because of the Warsaw Pact troops’
 invasion into Czechoslovakia in 1968.

“Slovakia has its historical experience
with the participation of foreign troops.
Let us remember the 1968 invasion.
 Therefore this topic is extraordinarily
sensitive to us,” he said.

Fico says Slovakia is committed to fulfill
 its obligations towards NATO, despite
 military budget cuts, and allies would
 be allowed to train on Slovak territory.

Czechoslovakia split into the Czech
Republic and Slovakia, in 1993.

The Czech Republic joined NATO in 1999.
Slovakia joined in 2004.

Fico’s Smer party, which has an absolute
 majority in Slovakia’s parliament, has been
 advocating warmer relations with Russia.



Syria’s leader Bashar al-Assad is announced as
the winner of the country’s presidential election.

Assad won 88.7 percent of the vote, or
10,319,723 of the 11,634,412 votes cast
 in Tuesday’s election, SANA reports.

The country’s Supreme Constitutional Court
  announces that 73.42% of the 15.8 million
eligible voters took part in the election.

It adds that no complaints have been
 received from any of the candidates
 regarding the voting process.

International delegates observing the
election have released a statement,
 calling it democratic and transparent.

Assad will be the country’s president
for the next seven years.


Two more army helicopters shot down
Ukraine's military officials say two army
helicopters were shot down on Wednesday
near Slavyansk city.

They say pro-Russian forces targeted
 the helicopters as they seized a police
headquarters in the east.

The Ukrainian army launched an offensive
 against pro-Russian forces in the city the
day before, to finally "quash" pro-federalists.
The prosecutor general’s office also says
that armed men took a regional branch of
the Interior Ministry in Shakhtyorsk city in
 the Donetsk region.

It says 37 policemen were taken hostage,
 but that later, 35 of them were released.

The Kiev government says over 300 pro-
Russian forces have been killed over the
 past 24 hours, in its offensive centered in
 and around Slavyansk.

A spokesperson for Kiev's forces
says two soldiers lost their lives
 and 45 were injured.


Ukrainians pour into Russia’s
 Rostov Province
Russian authorities have declared a state
of emergency in Rostov Province, along
 the border with Ukraine, due to an influx
 of refugees from Ukraine’s eastern regions.

Rostov’s Governor Vasily Golubev made
 the decision on Wednesday after a growing
number of refugees arrived from Ukraine.

According to local officials, 7,000 people,
 mostly women and children, have crossed
 the border to take shelter in Russia, in
the past 24 hours.

Officials say 15 regions in Rostov Province
have been stretched to the limit, by large
numbers of Ukrainian refugees.

Hundreds of other refugees have taken
 shelter in Crimea, which has recently
rejoined the Russian Federation.

The influx comes as civilians are targeted
more now in Kiev’s military operations in
the regions of Donetsk and Lugansk.

Russia has submitted a draft resolution to
 the United Nations Security Council (UNSC),
 calling for an immediate ceasefire and a
humanitarian corridor in Ukraine.

Russian Ambassador to the United Nations (UN)
 Vitaly Churkin criticises “heavy, indiscriminate
 shelling of residential areas” using both artillery
 and aviation, saying the operations are killing
 civilians every day.



US President Barack Obama’s speech in
 Poland's capital Warsaw reveals that he is
“a mouthpiece” of George Soros and other
international manipulators and infiltrators,
an investigative journalist tells Press TV.

“Listening to President Obama’s speech in
 Warsaw, it was quite clear that he’s basically
 nothing more than a mouthpiece for George
 Soros manipulators and infiltrators around
the world,” said Wayne Madsen, an author
and syndicated columnist in Washington.

Obama spoke of “freedom” coming to Belarus,
 Venezuela and Georgia, the countries in which
 Soros has been in operation for a number of
 years to overthrow the elected governments,
 Madsen said.

“Mr. Soros, of course, has also revealed in an
 interview, that HIS operations in Ukraine were
largely responsible for the overthrow of the
democratically elected government of that
country,” he added.

Soros, who gave millions of dollars to Obama’s
 presidential campaigns, “has been directing
his foreign policy covertly, and now somewhat
 overtly, since Obama has been president of
 the United States,” Madsen noted.

Soros has been accused of using his money
 to subvert political systems in many Eastern
 European and Central Asian countries. His
 critics also claim he leads the international
illegal drug trade.

Soros is also known as "the man who broke
 the Bank of England" because of his short-
 selling of $10 billion worth of pounds, giving
him a profit of $1 billion, during the 1992
Black Wednesday UK currency crisis.


Russia not to get involved in
 senseless confrontations with West

Russia is not going to build anti-western
 constructions or get involved in senseless
 confrontations just for the sake of providing
the US and NATO with their desired "enemy"
 image, Russia's foreign minister Sergei
Lavrov, says.

The policy of limiting Russia’s capabilities is
 being conducted mostly, not by European
powers, but by the US, Lavrov says.

“The oddest thing is that all this is happening
 contrary to the obvious and objective benefit
that  the pooling of technologies, resources
and human capital, might yield for both parts
of the European continent,” Lavrov says.

In his opinion, this contradiction stems from
 the fact that the policy of restricting Russia’s
 capabilities is led, not by Europe's powers,
 but primarily, by the United States.”

The idea of making the historic West, a
stronghold managing the world economy,
appears to be a very dangerous illusion, 
Lavrov adds.

“In any event, the concept of turning the
historic West into a stronghold to manage
 the world economy & perform the functions
 of a global police officer, is a dangerous
 illusion,” he says.

 “It is dangerous, because attempts to put it
 into practice could undermine world stability
 rather than this idea becoming a reality, as,
in the modern, interdependent world, it is
unreal to build certain 'oases' of well-being
and security, fenced off from the outer world.

“Many analysts in Russia, the European Union
 and in the United States, have been stressing
 the fact that the Americans are out to prevent
 the unification of potential for Russia and that
the US, primarily, is guided by the task of
 preserving its own global leadership.”

Lavrov adds. “Immanuel Wallerstein wrote
 just recently, about the nightmare of the
Paris-Berlin-Moscow axis nightmare, that
 keeps haunting Washington politicians.”

Russia is not going to “swallow” another
 wave of offensives against its national
 interests, Sergei Lavrov emphasizes.

“In recent days, it has become particularly
clear that a choice has been made in favor
of intensifying actions designed to “discard”

“They made their choice long before the
 Ukrainian crisis broke out: suffice it to
 remember such landmarks in unwinding
 the anti-Russian spiral, as ‘the Magnitsky
 Act’ & accusations of our support for Iran
 & later Syria. The very fact of preparations
 for the Sochi Olympics became a pretext for
 the spurring up of anti-Russian propaganda
 --- in proportions that had nothing to do with
sober sense, or even elementary decency,”
 the Russian foreign minister says.

“Ukraine has become a frontier, beyond which
 “compressing a spring” further, is no longer
 possible. We warned our Western colleagues
 many times, that it is impossible to sway the
 fragile internal political situation in Ukraine,
and warned them about the extremely serious
 consequences of creating a seat of instability
 in Europe. Nevertheless, they have grossly
 interfered in the internal affairs in Ukraine;
they orchestrated and supported an anti-
constitutional coup, with the help of ultra-
nationalist & neo-Nazi forces,” he stresses.

There is a widespread belief, that these
 considerations largely determined the US’
initiative on creating the trans-Atlantic
'trading and investment partnership'.

“Cutting ropes and shutting lids is no good
in relations between Russia and the West -
for us and for them,” Lavrov says. “However,
it is clear that there can be no return to the
previous model of relations, filled by double
standards and insincerity towards Russia.”

Lavrov expresses hope that the crisis now will
“serve as a sort of refreshing thunderstorm
that will make it possible, 'though not instantly,
to shift relations with the western partners,
to a more sound and honest basis.”

“Possibly, there will be less painful discussions
 about the search for common values and more
 recognition of each other’s right to be different;
more striving for building relations on the solid
 basis of equality and mutual respect for each
 other’s interests,” Lavrov says.

Russia is ready to take part in joint efforts
 to overcome the crisis in Ukraine, Sergei
 Lavrov says.

“Russia warns that, under no circumstances,
 will it passively watch an operation to change
 the regime in a neighbouring country, and use
it to attack Russians, their language, history,
culture and their legal rights --- in compliance
with the European conventions,” Lavrov says,
 at a Russian International Affairs Council
session, on Wednesday.

“We supported the agreement of February 21st,
although we considered it as not ideal. We took
 part in working out the Geneva agreement of
April 17th, and the OSCE ‘roadmap’,” he says.

“The documents contain major principles for
 restoring peace in Ukraine: de-escalation and
 an inclusive dialogue to meet the interests of
 all regions,” Lavrov says.

“We call on foreign sponsors of the new Kiev
 authorities, to use their authority to stop the
 punitive operation in Ukraine’s south-east,”
 he says.


Ukrainian troops kill more than 25
 people -- in Krasny Liman hospital

Ukrainian servicemen have shot and killed
 over 25 people in Krasny Liman hospital,
Chair of the Supreme Council of the self-
proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic,
Denis Pushilin, says by 'phone.

"According to the preliminary information,
 over 25 people have been killed, but we fear
the toll might be higher," Pushilin says.

"Shooting at the sick and wounded is not
even genocide. The immoral actions by
 Kiev's junta defy description," he says.

He says a precise casualty toll from Sloviansk
 fighting is also not available. "Figures differ
greatly. We will know later," Pushilin says.

Several commuter trains have been cancelled
after massive damage to the railway track and
platform at a railway station in
Krasny Liman,
  by Ukrainian air strikes, the press service of
  Donetsk railway authority said on Wednesday.

 Administrative and economic buildings, platforms
 and the rail track at Krasny Liman railway station
 were damaged in the air strike, the press service
 says. The press service also mentions that one
 surgeon was killed in the attack on the hospital.

Meanwhile, militia state that Ukrainian military
 forces shot down a brigade of railway workers
 from Sloviansk, in Krasny Liman, on June 3rd.

 “Railway workers who remained alive are being
 kept in captivity. Snipers do not permit them to
 go out,” the militia says, without elaborating on
where the railway workers are now being held.


Right Sector leader to take post
 in new Ukraine government

The leader of a far-right Ukrainian party,
 Right Sector, Dmytro Yarosh, who is on
 an international wanted list, has said
'yes' to the offer of a post in the new
government being formed now, by
President-elect, Petro Poroshenko.

 Yarosh accepts the offer, Right Sector
representative Borislav Bereza told
 local media, on Wednesday.


Europe plans no short-term measures to block
 South Stream construction -- EU spokesperson

The European Commission does not plan any
short-term practical measures to block the
 construction of Russia’s South Stream gas
pipeline, EU spokesperson Antoine
Colombani says on Wednesday.

The European Commission has formally
 requested that Bulgaria supply information
 on the South Stream gas pipeline tender,
 as it believes that public contracts for the
 pipeline work were awarded in breach of
 EU legislation, he says.

This request means the start of a so-called
 infringement procedure, which could result
in the imposition of penalties on Bulgaria.

The European Commission will decide on
 further action, after receiving information
 from Bulgaria, which has 1 month to reply,
he says.

This reaction by the European Commission,
to yesterday's media reports that the EU
had warned countries to stop the South
Stream pipeline, which by-passes Ukraine
and all its problems, is very welcome.


Sloviansk militia shot down 2 Ukrainian
 warplanes on June 3rd - people's mayor

"The second Ukrainian plane was shot down
 in the district on Tuesday evening, at around
10 pm local time. It is still unclear what type
of plane it was," the people's mayor of
Sloviansk, Vyacheslav Ponomaryov, says,
 adding that the pilot ejected and fled.

Ponomaryov confirms the report that militia
 had downed a Ukrainian helicopter gunship
 earlier in the day. "It was shot down when it
 was firing at our positions in Sloviansk."

On Tuesday, Ponomaryov said that militia had
 shot down a Ukrainian Su-25. Ukrainian troops
 therefore lost two planes, two helicopters and
four armored vehicles on June 3rd and 4th.

Ukrainian aviation delivered at least 6 strikes
 on Semyonovka, near Sloviansk on Tuesday,
and fired missiles at
Cherevkovka village.

Ukrainian troops were also shelling Sloviansk
 and its adjacent areas, on Tuesday, damaging
water & power supply lines in several districts.


Ukraine Acknowledges
      Total Support from the West     
The Defense Minister of the Ukrainian interim
 government, Mijail Koval, acknowledges the
total support provided by the North Atlantic
 Treaty Organization (NATO) for the punishment
operations in the southeast of the country.

Koval, attending a NATO ministerial meeting
  as a guest of the Atlantic Alliance, points out
that his country has everything it needs now,
 to continue the military offensive, including
 combat planes, cluster bombs and heavy

Over 200 civilians have been killed in recent
 weeks, in the Lugansk, Donetsk & Donbass
 self-proclaimed independent regions, after
their referenda votes in April, which took
place despite harassment by the regular
army and the new National Guard.

Ignoring reports of indiscriminate attacks
on town centres & administrative buildings
 in the above-mentioned regions, the Atlantic
 Alliance has so far avoided condemning the
bombing of civilians and, far from it, is now
threatening Russia with further sanctions.

Moscow rejected the legality of the executive
 installed in Kiev, after the takeover by fascist
 paramilitaries of the Ukrainian government
headquarters, parliament and presidency,
which forced the overthrow of Ukraine's
legitimate President, Viktor Yanukóvich.


Devastation as Ukraine army
 shells hit another hospital

The village of Krasny Liman near Slavyansk
 in the Donetsk region was heavily shelled by
the Ukrainian army on Tuesday.

 Residents were killed and injured as shells
 hit a hospital, a school and a train station,
locals told RT news.

 Local resident Roman told RT by phone, that
 a mortar shell hit the centre of Krasny Liman
 and a passerby was killed. A mortar shell also
 landed near the train station, he said, adding
 that a train driver was killed, while some of
his colleagues were injured.

The local hospital was also heavily shelled,
 with patients and personnel still inside it.

Local resident Irina told RT by phone, of
 unconfirmed reports that a surgeon was
 killed. Irina and Roman said that a local
school was also shelled, but there is no
 official confirmation, so far.

There are no official figures of the killed
and injured so far.

The army has been detaining people, local
 resident Irina, who was fleeing to Kharkov,
 told RT on the phone.

Residents said the Ukrainian National Guard 
raided apartments in Krasny Liman, looking
 for self-defense forces. The town is about 20
 kilometers north of Slavyansk, and has a
population of about 23,000 people.


Ukrainian National Guard Prepares
                  New Repressive Battalion               
Ukraine's National Guard on Tuesday announced
 the creation of a third Donbass battalion, made
 up of radicals and former Maidan activists, to
quell the resistance in Donetsk and Lugansk.

According to the repressive structure, formed
after last February's coup d'etat, over 300
armed men, from 18 to 55 years old, form
 part of the new third battalion.

The National Guard communique acknowledges
 that a majority of the "volunteers" are activists
who took part in the violent disturbances in the
 capital during the anti-government protests,
 that ended in the coup d'etat.

The Donbass battalion is the creation of the
leader of the fascist Right Sector organization,
 Dmitri Yarosh.

The second battalion was created in early June,
 and used former Maidan fighters in battles waged
 around Slavyansk city, in the Donetsk region.

The National Guard is now also involved in
repressive actions against the resistance
in Mariupol, Jarkov, Odessa, and Nikolaev.

Tuesday, Ukrainian fighter jets and helicopters
 launched new missile attacks against civilian
populated zones in Slavyansk, Donetsk region,
as part of a military offensive to punish the
 eastern part of the country.

News agencies quote sources from the
 people's militias, saying that Ukrainian
 fighter jets are raining shrapnel on the
towns of Semenovka and Raigorodok.

Russian television channels are airing
footage of the destruction caused
by the bombing runs.

On Tuesday, another two helicopters from the
Ukrainian Air Force, bombed Cherevovka area,
also in Slavyansk region, which has become a
 symbol of resistance to the military operation
 started by Kiev, in mid April.

Members of the National Guard and squadrons
 of the neo-fascist Right Sector group, are also
taking part in these military incursions.


Confirmed: Ukrainian air force fired over 150
 missiles at Lugansk, bombed admin HQ

Kiev now admits showering the eastern Ukrainian
 city of Lugansk with dozens of missiles from the air,
 saying that its Air Force helicopters and jets “fired
 over 150 missiles” in Monday’s military action.

DEATH TOLL: 181 people killed,
293 injured in Kiev military op

The Organization for Security and Cooperation in
 Europe (OSCE) also confirmed on Tuesday, that
  an explosion at Lugansk’s administrative building
was an airstrike. On Monday, Kiev denied their
responsibility for the incident, saying its forces
“do not target” civilian areas.

The OSCE Ukrainian mission’s daily report says:
 “on June 2nd, around 15:00 local time, missiles
hit the building of the regional government
 administration. According to observers’ data,
 the strike was carried out by non-guided
launched from an aircraft.”

According to an earlier statement by the Ukrainian
 Defense Ministry, the intense bombing in Lugansk
 area was meant to “support the Ukrainian Border
 Guards,” which the local militia have been trying
 to take under control.

“All in all, for fulfilling the combat support of
 the Ukrainian border guards, army aviators
 fired over 150 missiles, carried out three jet
 sorties and five helicopter sorties,” Kiev's
statement said.

Some Kiev politicians even tried to blame the
self-defense forces for the deadly “blast,” which
 was confirmed as an airstrike, by the accounts
 of witnesses and CCTV footage from the scene.



On May 30th, Slavyansk's self-defense forces 
 shot down a Ukrainian troop helicopter and
people were killed, including an ex Soviet
 officer, who was the head of combat and
special training
for the Interior Troops of
Ukraine, a Major-
General Sergei Kulchitsky.

Kulchitsky had previously given an interview
 to journalist Marina Akhmedova, anonymously,
  in which, he threatened Russia with terrorism.

"I will do everything so that they become good
 soldiers. I've shown them what they need to
do, to kill you.

"Tell your Putin to build friendly relations with
 us. Otherwise, we will poison your water.
We will sprinkle poison in your water pipes.
 We will rub you out in the outhouse. I'll be
doing it. I'll be killing you in cold blood,"
 said Kulchitsky, in the interview.

 The journalist, Marina Akhmedova, confirms
 that the 'anonymous' man, she interviewed,
 was Kulchitsky.


Ukrainian towns piled with
 corpses, eyewitnesses say

One eyewitness in Kranoarmeysk says
Ukrainian troops on Tuesday, shelled and
bombed Slavyansk and Krasny Liman.

He reports that the streets are piled with
corpses, and snipers operate in the towns,
 preventing approaches to help the wounded.

Militias hope to attract international attention
 to brutal atrocities, which the new Ukrainian
 authorities are commiting in the south-east.

The Ukrainian military is using tanks, armored
 personnel carriers, rocket launchers and aircraft,
 to attack the villages of Semenovka, Cherepkovka,
Voevodovka, Krasny Liman and Slavyansk's suburbs.

Five militiamen were killed in combat Tuesday,
local media report, and over 20, were injured.


East Ukraine militia down fighter
 plane, helicopter gunship, 4 APCs

People’s militia in the city of Sloviansk, east
 Ukraine’s Donetsk Region, downed a Su-25
fighter plane and a Ukrainian helicopter

 gunship plus 4 armored personnel carriers
(APC), Sloviansk People’s Mayor Vyacheslav
 Ponomarev told ITAR-TASS on Tuesday.

Ukraine's military has amassed armored
vehicles, self-propelled mortars & howitzers
around Sloviansk, Stella Khorosheva, the
spokesperson for the Sloviansk people's
mayor, stated.

The military equipment, numbering 100 units
 includes Grad salvo systems, Khorosheva said.

An An-30 plane was sighted over Sloviansk,
 making periodic flyovers. Khorosheva says
more clashes began at around 6.00 am
local time, on Tuesday.

"A report said Ukrainian troops broke through
 in the area of the village of Semyonovka," she
 reports, adding that Ukraine's National Guard
is using tanks.

"It looks like they've brought their entire
army and equipment here," she said.


Another Libyan new PM takes office
 after gunmen storm gov't building
Libya's new Prime Minister Ahmed Maitiq, along
 with his ministers, announce that they took office
 on Monday evening, after gunmen stormed the
 government compound to clear the way for them.

Maitiq states that his cabinet has begun working,
 despite his predecessor, Abdullah Thinni, refusing
 to transfer power. Maitiq's eighteen ministers were
 also present at the press conference.

Earlier in the evening, gunmen stormed the
 Libyan government compound, demanding
 a transfer of power, says a security source.

Dozens of militants driving vehicles mounted
 with anti-aircraft guns, asked the guards to
 hand over the building, the source says.

The militants didn't fire one shot. They
instead negotiated with the guards and
handed them Maitiq's assignment letter
endorsed by the parliament, before
 taking over the building.

Maitiq, a businessman from Libya's third
 largest city of Misrata, was sworn in as
 prime minister last month, but quickly
 challenged by his predecessor, Abdullah
Thinni, and other politicians.

Analysts say that Libya now, technically,
has three prime ministers - Maitiq, Thinni
and Ali Zeidan, the last of whom was
ousted by the parliament in March, but
still claims legitimacy.

The Libyan parliament has been deadlocked
 between different interest groups, since the
2011 Western backed bombing, that toppled
 and then assassinated the country's former
leader, Muammar Gaddafi.


OIC: Boko Haram Has Nothing to Do with Islam

The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC)
on Monday condemned Nigeria's Boko Haram
as a terrorist group that does not represent
Muslims or their faith.

"The OIC has issued statements that are very
 clear that these people are outlaws," Iyad
Ameen Madani, the secretary general of the
 pan-Muslim body, tells reporters in Abuja.

"What they do, is criminal. It has absolutely
 nothing to do with Islam, Islamic teachings,
history, culture or the civilization of Islam."

"We should identify them for what they are
as a terrorist group," said the OIC chief, after
 meeting Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan.

He said the delegation of the 57-member group
 had come to express solidarity with Nigeria,
and victims of "this terrorist organization."

Madani offered to assist Nigeria in whatever way
 possible, including fostering interfaith dialogue.

Nigeria has been a member of the OIC since 1986.

Boko Haram, which means "Western education
is forbidden" in Nigeria's local Hausa language,
 first emerged in the early 2000s, preaching
 against government misrule and corruption.

The group later became violent, however,
after the death of its leader in 2009, while
in police custody.

In the five years since, the shadowy sect has
 been blamed for numerous attacks and for
thousands of deaths, in northern Nigeria.

Although it claims to want an Islamist government
 in the region, mosques and Muslims – most of whom
 reject Boko Haram as un-Islamic – have also been
targeted by the militant group.


Health minister of self-proclaimed Lugansk
 People’s Republic dies in air strike

“As far as I know five people, all of them civilians,
are dead. At least 10 people are wounded. Many
 of them are in a serious condition,” the press
 service of the Luhansk People’s Republic says.

The public health minister of the self-proclaimed
 Luhansk People’s Republic, Natalya Arkhipova,
 died in the air strike, which a Ukrainian fighter
 jet had delivered onto the Luhansk regional
administration building earlier on Monday,
 the press service of the Luhansk People’s
 Republic tells ITAR-TASS.

“I confirm the death of Natalya Arkhipova. As far
 as I know, five people, all of them civilians, are
 dead. At least 10 people are wounded. Many of
 them are in serious condition,” the press
service went on to say.

The regional administration building is now
sealed off.

A Ukrainian fighter aircraft that delivered the air
 strike could have used cluster bombs. The strike
 caused a fire on the building’s fourth floor and
 damaged its front facade to the left from the
main entrance.


At least five killed in admin HQ blast as
 fighter jets deployed to Lugansk, Ukraine

At least five people are reported killed after an
 explosion on Lugansk administration building.

The blast came as Kiev deployed fighter jets to
 the city in eastern Ukraine. This, and heavy
ground gunfire, caused panic among civilians.

The death toll was reported by RIA Novosti;
 then it was confirmed by self-defense forces,
 who say the blast was caused by the army's
 fighter jets striking the building.

“Ukraine’s air force struck Lugansk downtown
 at 16.00pm. Military aircraft made a targeted
 strike, deploying cluster bombs. The admin.
building is partly destroyed,” the government
of the self-proclaimed Lugansk People’s
Republic (LNR) says.

Many wounded were trapped inside the
 administration headquarters, which had
caught on fire. About six ambulances
then arrived. The death toll may rise.

Those killed - three women and two men - are
 all civilians, witnesses state. One of them was
 the LNR’s health minister, Natalia Arkhipova.

During the air-strike, she was talking to another
 woman on the administration building’s steps,
 the self-proclaimed republic’s premier, Vasiliy
 Nikitin, says.

Large blood stains inside the HQ could be seen
 on live-streaming videos from the area, with
 pieces of glass and stone visible on the floor.

 The camera operator was choking with smoke.
 On the outside, many windows are shattered,
 shell fragments covering the nearby area and
 plumes of smoke coming from the 4th floor.

Unexploded shells have been found in a park
in front of the building, say self-defense forces.
Locals were urged to leave the area.

“The fire has engulfed the 3rd and 4th floors
 of the building, and the windows have been
 blown out. There're
glass shards everywhere.
 I saw paramedics carrying people out of the
 entrance,” a witness tells RT.

Minutes earlier, heavy machine-gun shots
 were reported in the centre of Lugansk, as
 fierce fighting between local self-defense
 squads and Kiev forces renewed, after a
 brief truce.

The shooting sparked panic among visitors
 in a café, who rushed out to look for shelter.

Fighting in the Lugansk region continued later
on Monday, with another airstrike reported

 by the self-proclaimed republic’s authorities.

 They say Kiev forces launched an air strike on
 a checkpoint in the region, and that there are

Kiev denies air strike on admin building

Kiev denied attacking the HQ, insisting that its
 forces aren't firing on residential areas in cities,
 and don't use air power in those areas, reported
 the Ukrainian news agency, UNN.

The Ukrainian authorities sent its air force
 to Lugansk to support border guard units
 stationed in the area, stated Vladislav
Seleznyov, spokesperson for the military
 operation against pro-autonomy areas
 in eastern Ukraine.

The fighter jets eliminated two opposition
 mortar detachments, he told the media.

Seleznyoov said that, according to preliminary
 expert conclusions, the explosion in the building
in Lugansk, filled with civilians, resulted from an
 attempt to launch an anti-aircraft missile.

”Fighter jets could become vulnerable while
making turns," he said. “Perhaps, terrorists
 were trying to shoot them down from some
 air defense system, but the explosion
 occurred inside the building.”

In the early hours of Monday, self-defense fighters
 attacked the Lugansk border unit's encampment.

“About a hundred armed men drove up towards
 Lugansk border unit's building at around 00:30am
 and took positions along the perimeter. The first
 attack, using machine guns & under-barrel grenade
 launchers, began at about 04:00am, and lasted for
 about 40 minutes. The border guards successfully
 deterred the attack,” the Ukrainian State Border
Service reported on its website.

The 2nd and 3rd attacks were also successfully
 repelled, it said, adding that there were wounded
 among the border guards and several victims
 among the self-defense groups.

According to the State Border Service,
“terrorists” kept sending forces to the
border unit’s area, and by 7am, there
were “about 400” at the site.

Fighting continued for several hours before
 a truce was reached in the early afternoon,
 to allow for the wounded to be moved from
the area. Violence resumed though, just
 half-an hour later.

Talks between self-defense activists and the
border guards’ command reached a deadlock,
 a spokesperson for the People’s Republic of
 Lugansk tells Itar-Tass.

The local authorities sought “a peaceful
 solution to the situation” and wanted the
 “servicemen living in the People’s Republic
of Lugansk”, to leave the border guards’
unit, and return to their homes. However,
military officials rejected the proposal.

The Russian Foreign Ministry calls Kiev’s
present military attacks in southeastern
 Ukraine, and the use of the air force, a
 “gross violation” of international law.

"The authorities in Kiev have committed
 another crime against their own people,"
 a statement on the ministry's website says.

 "Everything that has taken place indicates
 the downright unwillingness of the Kiev
 authorities to move towards seeking
 national accord in the country."

Moscow also urges NATO to demand that
 Kiev immediately stop its military attack
 and fulfill the Geneva accords, as well as
the OSCE roadmap of the settlement of
the Ukrainian crisis, Russia’s envoy to
 the alliance told NATO ambassadors.

Meanwhile, a video has emerged, showing
number of Ukrainian forces surrendering
supporters of the self-proclaimed
Republic of Lugansk.



Russia's envoy to the North Atlantic Treaty
 Organization says the west's military alliance
 is “encouraging” the Kiev authorities to use
 force on pro-Moscow activists in East Ukraine.

Alexander Grushko made the remarks at a
meeting with ambassadors of NATO member
states in Brussels on Monday, Russia's Ria
 Novosti news agency reports.

As Vladimir Putin's spokesperson, Dmitry
Peskov said, the Kiev regime and Western
sponsors, are "up to their elbows in blood"
following this weekend's deadly violence.

"NATO is providing Kiev with technical support,
 thus encouraging the continuation of forceful
 actions," Grushko said at the NATO meeting.

The Russian official also accused NATO of
adding to tensions in the eastern Ukrainian
 provinces by conducting "unprecedented"
 activities near Russia's borders.

He added that the military alliance is hampering
 efforts to find a peaceful solution to the current
 turmoil in the former Soviet state.

The US and its allies have spent millions
destabilising Ukraine, first with an "Orange
 Revolution, and more recently, by helping
a semi-fascist government to power.

Of course, they have accused Russia of
"encouraging" separatists, and will cry
foul if Putin intervenes now. Perhaps
he should.


Live tactical missile firing by
Russia’s Western Command

Russia’s most advanced exercises, using
missile complexes for high precision firing,
 have been completed by Russia’s Western

Training included fixing top-priority targets,
 with air-based and ballistic ground-based
missile complexes.

The Russian Air Force’s strategic long-range
aviation engaged surface targets with cruise
 missiles, while training was undertaken on
 deployment at the Iskander-M nuclear-capable
 mobile theatre ballistic missile complexes.

 The drills focussed on the elimination of
 hard-to-destroy targets, with high-impact
 precision weaponry.

The "war games" started on May 27th
 and continued until June the 5th.

“In the course of the maneuvers, we are
carrying out integrated damage attacks
 on the critically important installations of
 a hypothetical aggressor’s infrastructure,
 using high-precision ground-and-air-based
 weapons,” reported the press-service of
Russia’s Defense Ministry.

Iskander-M (NATO name, SS-26 Stone),
is a quasi-ballistic missile complex with an
officially declared range of 400 kilometers.

It's currently limited by the Intermediate-Range
 Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF) agreement signed
 between the US and the Soviet Union, in 1987.

The INF treaty prohibits the development and
 deployment of all medium-range ballistic and
cruise missiles, and eliminated existing ones
with a range of 500 to 5,500 kilometers.

If the INF agreement is terminated, the
range of the Iskander complexes can
 easily be raised.

Iskander-M has a wide range of warheads,
 from conventional, powerful thermobaric,
 cluster and bunker buster warheads, to
tactical nuclear warheads.

The Russian authorities have repeatedly warned
 NATO's leaders, that if they further deployed US
anti-ballistic missile complexes in Europe, then
 Moscow reserves the right to deploy Iskander-M
missile complexes in the Kaliningrad region,
 Russia’s enclave in Europe.

 In this case, all of Poland, where the US plans
 to station its ABM bases, will be covered for
 a potential launch-through-attack strike.

The threat of having modern missile complexes
 on their borders, which cannot be intercepted,
has sparked opposition from the Baltic States
 and Poland, which call on the US to increase
 its military presence in the region.

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov maintains
that the matter of deployment is now fully
in the hands of the Russian military, saying
that “when there’s a need – the military will
 make the decision.”

The press-service of the Russian Defense
 Ministry stresses that deployment of the
Iskander complexes is not limited by any
 international agreements.

Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu ends the
 discussion, by saying:  “on the territory
 of the Russian Federation, we deploy
 whatever we want, wherever we want.”

These maneuvers were held against
the background of the new Ukrainian
 authorities’ military attacks on mainly
 Russian-populated eastern regions of
Ukraine, which demand federalization
 of the country.


Abbas swears in Palestinian unity government

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas swore in
 a unity government on Monday, Reuters says.

Ministers, professed to be politically unaffiliated,
 took the oath of office in a televised ceremony
 in Ramallah, the Palestinian seat of government
 in the Israeli-occupied West Bank.

 However, three ministers from the Hamas-run
 Gaza Strip were denied entry to the West Bank
 by Israel.


Former guerrilla leader, Salvador Sanchez
sworn in, as president of El Salvador.

During the inauguration ceremony on Sunday,
 Sanchez Ceren vowed to govern the country
 “with honesty, austerity, efficiency and

"After long years of fighting for justice
 and democracy in my country, I receive
the presidential sash with humility and
profound respect, with a commitment
to exercise the presidency for all
Salvadorans," he said.

The 69 year old, who previously served as
vice president, succeeds President Funes,

 also from the Farabundo Marti National
 Liberation Front (FMLN) party, who was
ineligible to run for a 2nd consecutive term.

Beating gang violence is among the challenges
 the new president faces. Across El Salvador,
 criminal groups, with about 60,000 members,
 control whole neighborhoods, running drug
 smuggling and extortion rackets.

The country also faces a mounting government
 debt burden and a high poverty rate that stands
 at over 40% of the population.

El Salvador was gripped by a bitter civil war
between 1979-1992, in which Sanchez Ceren
was one of the top guerilla commanders.

conflict left over 76,000 people dead.


People leave homes due to fighting
 on outskirts of Lugansk, Ukraine

People left their homes in Lugansk, in
eastern Ukraine, as fighting continued on
the city's outskirts for hours, on Monday,
 RIA Novosti reports.

Artillery shelling on the southern outskirts
 started early in the morning, say self-defense
 forces, who were trying to take control of a
 unit of the Ukrainian frontier service.

Small arms and grenade launchers were used
 in the fighting. One member of the militia was
reportedly killed and several wounded.

 The frontier service of Ukraine says several
border guards were also wounded.


Ukrainian army opens mortar
 fire on Slavyansk suburbs

Ukraine’s troops began mortar shelling
  Slavyansk's suburbs, on Sunday night,
a spokes-person for Slavyansk’s self-
defence volunteer corps says.

 “Shelling became heavier after dark. They
 are using mortars and firearms,” he said.

Artillery shells damaged the buildings of the
 Sails of Hope children’s home and the research
 institute, he said, adding that a shell hit one of
the walls of a children’s home.

“There were no children inside at the moment
 of shelling: they were evacuated from the town
 last week,” the spokesperson said.

At the research institute, a mine exploded in
 front of the building, breaking all the windows.
 Shelling also destroyed trolleybus power lines.

On Sunday evening, shooting was heard in the
 vicinity of Slavyansk, which is surrounded by
the Ukrainian army.

“There was a skirmish. No details are available.
We are checking who shot, and from where.
 Sporadic shooting can be heard in the town,”
 a representative of the volunteer corps says.

Earlier on Sunday, five civilians were reported
 to be wounded as the town came under artillery
 shelling. Shooting and explosions were heard.
 A jet fighter was reported flying over the town.

According to reports coming from Slavyansk,
 the town now has problems with mobile phones.
There are problems with the internet in some of
 the town’s districts. On Saturday, the town and
 its suburb, Semyonovka, came under fire.


Parents in Ukraine’s Donetsk rally,
 demand security for their children

Over a thousand people rallied in Donetsk
on Sunday - International Children's Day -
to demand that children be protected from
Kiev’s military assault, with posters saying:
 "Save Donbass kids from the Ukrainian army!"

The "Protect Donbass Children" protesters
had signs saying "No to the Ukrainian army,"
 "Slavic world without fascism" and "We are
for peace". The mothers, with their children,
demanded an end to the Kiev government's
offensive in the region.

The military operation has not stopped after
 the Ukrainian elections, but has intensified.

 Several children were injured in Slavyansk
on May 30th, after the Ukrainian military
 shelled the town’s residential area, and
 a shell hit a children’s hospital.

 Two days earlier, a school & kindergarten
 were hit in Kiev's attacks on Slavyansk.

Women rallying Sunday, say they want
 to attract the international community's
attention to the fact that civilians are
 being targeted by the Ukrainian army.

"Snipers shoot at our children. We don't
have words to express it any more, just
 emotions, tears and pain," one woman
told Mir24 journalists at the rally.

Some protesters trod on boxes of Roschen
sweets, to express their discontent with
 the newly elected President, Poroshenko,
 who made his fortune with confectionary.

Earlier, the PM of the self-proclaimed
Donetsk People’s Republic, Aleksandr
 Boroday, warned parents of Donetsk
school graduates not to celebrate the
 end of the school year, and to cancel
 graduation parties, as there are now
 "concerns for children's lives, safety."

A similar rally took place in Kharkov.

Hundreds of children have recently been
 evacuated from the region, but Ukraine's
 authorities seized some of the transport
 carrying Slavyansk refugees.

 On May 31st, a bus carrying women and
 children from the area was stopped at a
 border checkpoint, by Ukrainian guards.

Evacuations from Donetsk are not being
 implemented, as the city is blockaded by
 Kiev's forces. The authorities of the self-
proclaimed republic talk now of sending
 several buses with local children, to find
safety in Russia.

Kiev alleges that they are only targeting
 "terrorists", and not civilians, accusing
the militia fighters of using civilians as
human shields, the commander of the
 operation says.


        Over 1,500 Palestinians to
                      Join Mass Hunger Strike 

Over 1,500 Palestinians held in Israeli prisons
on Sunday, joined with another 120 on their
38th day of a hunger strike, in what is set to
become a mass protest.

If the situation continues there could be
martyrs, warns the Minister of Prisoners
 Affairs, Issa Qarage, while making the

 He reveals that nearly one hundred hunger
 strikers have been placed in prison hospital
 due to their poor health.

The protesters demand to know the crimes
 atributed to them and want legal assistance.

Legislation dating from British colonial times
 in the early 20th Century, means suspects
 can be held in prison indefinitely, without
charge, and with no legal advice or help.

In 2010, after a mass hunger strike involving
 over 2,000 prisoners, Isareli occupation forces
 agreed to use the said law in exceptional cases
only, but as usual, they have reneged on this.

Many strikers suffer internal bleeding, a
loss of memory and faint, and some need
 urgent surgery, says the Palestinian official.

He quotes a document that inmates managed
 to take out of a prison, denouncing physical
 mistreatment, frequent searches, denying
 them salt (which they usually dissolve in
water as their only meal) and the seizure
 of their property.

Qarage urges Arab heads of State to "intervene
 and avoid the tragedy Israel is about to cause."

Since the start of Israel's military occupation
 in 1967, over 800,000 Palestinians from the
occupied territories, have been imprisoned
 under that law or had harsh prison sentences.


       Women in Bolivia Call for
         Strategies vs. Domination   
The International Women's Summit in Bolivia,
calls for a strengthening of strategies to end
the elite's plans to dominate society, and for
the opening of new spaces for women's

Participants at the forum in Santa Cruz,
ended their conference by stating that
designing new indicators to monitor &
 assess society, are vitally necessary.

By controlling real measurements, processes
 for redistributing wealth, and constructing new
 ways of exercising power, can be managed.

All governments should measure domestic
 accounts, to provide sufficient budgets to
 overcome inequalities among people, states
 the final declaration of the meeting, prior to
 the Summit of the G-77 + China, to be held
 here on June 14-15th.

The International Women's Summit discussed
 progress in the winning of women's rights,
 their challenges for a new order, economic
 liberation, the eradication of poverty, and
 comprehensive, transformation objectives
for the post-2015 global agenda.


New Opposition Protests in Bahrain
                Despite Police Crackdown               
Bahrain's opposition groups announce new
mobilizations in Bahrain demanding reforms
and the hand-over of the body of an activist
 shot by police, in the ongoing Government
crack-down on demonstrators.

Leaders of the Al-Wefag society, the main
group of Shiite opposition parties, announce
 marches in several villages after their march
in Dajh, near the capital, which was dispersed
with tear gas, by security forces.

The demonstrators demand that forces loyal
 to Al Khalifa's monarchy, hand over the body of
 Abdul-Aziz Al-Abbar to his family. He died after
 50 days in a coma, as a result of the wounds
 sustained during a street protest.

A communique issued by the Police
Department in Manama province, says
agents had to fight what it called "a
group of terrorists", and followed legal
procedures to restore normalcy.

The note added that "a crowd of saboteurs
 threw Molotov cocktails at security officials,
 setting a civil car on fire in Karbabad."

However, Al-Wefag and the other opposition
groups state that Friday's crackdown and
Saturday's police deployment, are part of
the authorities' systematic hostility to
the majority Shiite population.


             Ukrainian Forces Resume Attacks, Bombings             

 Ukrainian forces resumed bombing on Saturday
 on the outskirts of Donetsk, with heavy artillery
 and harassment by National Guard squads.

Attacks were registered from daybreak, near
Joroshevo and the international airport, Rossia
 24 channel reports.

Witnesses confirm that there was machine-
gun fire and explosions in a residential area,
 where a training centre of the Minero soccer
 club, in center Donetsk, is located.

A helicopter flew over the regional
anti-aircraft defense units.

The Kiev government resumed last Monday,
 their military-political offensive, supported by
 mercenaries, after holding snap presidential
elections as a result of a coup d' Etat.


Self-proclaimed Donetsk republic authorities
do not have info' about 4 OSCE observers

Media reports have been made, quoting
Vyacheslav Ponomarev about the release
of OSCE observers in the Donetsk region,
but his words have been misinterpreted.

The OSCE stated Tuesday that a group of
the global organisation’s observers, went
missing on Monday evening, on their way
 from Lugansk to Donetsk.

The authorities of southeast Ukraine’s self-
proclaimed Donetsk people’s republic do not
 have any information about the whereabouts
of four observers from the Organisation for
Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE),
 Co-chair of Donetsk republican government
 Denis Pushilin, tells Itar-Tass, on Sunday.

“We don't have them,” he says, adding that
 information coming in from the media, has
 been checked, but there have been no
 reports about their whereabouts, as yet.

People’s Mayor of the Donetsk regional city
 of Slavyansk, Vyacheslav Ponomarev, tells
 Itar-Tass today, that he too, does not have
 any information about the fate of four OSCE

 “I can say now that there are no OSCE observers
 in Slavyansk now,” Ponomarev says, noting that
 there is only information that a group of 11 OSCE
 observers was released from captivity after phone
 contact had been lost with them, on Wednesday.

The OSCE stated on Tuesday that members of
 the OSCE monitoring mission had been detained
 at a checkpoint and after that, 'phone contact
was lost with them. These OSCE observers are
 from Denmark, Turkey, Switzerland and Estonia.

Another group of 11 OSCE observers went
missing for several hours in Shakhtersk
city, on Wednesday.

 However, they returned in the evening on
the same day to Donetsk, and all 'phone
 communication has been restored.


A US captive soldier in Afghanistan is
exchanged for 5 Guantanamo detainees

US President Barack Obama says his
administration reached the prisoner
 swap deal with the "Taliban".

The deal has led to the release of US
Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl, the soldier
held captive for nearly five years, The
New York Times reports.

In exchange, the US authorities have
released five Taliban prisoners held
 at the US-run Guantanamo detention
 facility in Cuba, the report says.

28-year-old Bergdahl, captured by the Taliban
in June 2009, was handed over to US Special
 Operations forces in Afghanistan, yesterday,
 by a group of 18 Taliban members, the Times
says, quoting US officials.

Officials say Bergdahl is in good condition.
 He was transferred to the US-run Bagram
Airbase near Kabul, from where, he will be
flown back home.

In a statement, President Obama praises
the Emir of Qatar for mediating the release.

Qatar will take custody of the Guantanamo
 prisoners, subject to security restrictions,
 including a one-year travel ban.

Obama personally telephoned the soldier’s
parents, shortly after Sergeant Bergdahl
 was transferred to the US military.

The sergeant’s parents:
“We were so joyful and relieved when
President Obama called us today to
 give us the news that Bowe is finally
 coming home! We cannot wait to wrap
 our arms around our only son.”

Obama confirmed on Tuesday, that the
32,000 US deployment in Afghanistan will
 be drawn down to 9,800 by the start of 2015.

Those forces would be halved by the end
 of 2015, then reduced to a normal embassy
 presence by the end of 2016, reported AFP.

The Taliban statement:
"Now that Obama has announced that he
 will keep around 10,000 troops until the
end of 2016 and continue the occupation,
 Afghanistan Islamic Emirate* condemns it
and considers it a violation of sovereignty,
 religion and human rights."
*the militants’ name for the country.


Thousands of pro-Russia protesters took to
 the streets in the self-proclaimed Republic
 of Donetsk, on Saturday, asking Moscow to
 protect them from the Ukrainian military.

Protesters gathered in the city’s Lenin Square.
Denis Pushilin, head of the Supreme Council of
 the Donetsk People's Republic, addressed them.

He said people in Donetsk were "extremely
 grateful" to Russian President Vladimir Putin
 for his support, despite international pressure.

“What we don't see at first sight - but we know
 and understand - is that the Russian Federation
 faces threats and pressure from the international
 community. But Russia still remains with us, and
 we feel their support. We very much hope that
 soon we will become one country," he added.

On May 12, Donetsk and Lugansk declared
 independence after local referenda, in which
 the regions’ residents voted overwhelmingly
 in favor of independence from Kiev.


Up to 80,000 Palestinians in E. Jerusalem
 left without tap water for three months

Tens of thousands of Palestinian residents in
 East Jerusalem have spent 3 months without
running water, despite petitions and calls by
human rights bodies, after an Israeli water
utility company stopped supplies in March.

Hagihon, Jerusalem’s water utility company,
stopped regular supplies of running water
to several neighborhoods in occupied East
Jerusalem, such as Shu’fat Refugee Camp,
Ras Khamis, Ras Sh’hadeh and Dahiyat a-
Salam, says a statement from the website
 of B'Tselem, the Israeli Information Centre
for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories.

The camps, inside Jerusalem’s municipal
 boundaries, are isolated from the rest of
 the city, by the Separation Barrier.

According to B'Tselem, some households in
 these camps “have been completely cut off
 from a water supply” while others “receive
 water intermittently.”

“As for the rest, water pressure in the pipes
 is so low, that water doesn't reach the taps,”
 says the statement.

As a result, 60,000 to 80,000 Palestinians,
 mostly permanent Israeli residents, have
 been left without a regular water supply,
adds the organization.

According to B'Tselem, the fact that people
 have to live without a proper water supply
 is but “another outcome of the severe and
ongoing neglect of the residents in the
Jerusalem neighborhoods, separated by
 the Separation Barrier from the rest of
 East Jerusalem.”

“The construction of the barrier and the
isolation of these neighborhoods, has
 led to a state of neglect, even more
 severe than that endured by the East
 Jerusalem neighborhoods for decades,”
 says the group.

Meanwhile, the local residents continue
 looking for running water in the camps.

Families have no choice, but to buy
 bottled water and limit consumption
 – drinking, showering and laundry –
to a minimum.

“Every other week, I take the kids to my
 family’s home in Ras al-‘Amud to shower.
 We go by bus and it takes us an hour to
 get there,” Linda Abu Rajeb tells B’Tselem.

She says her husband has to walk over to
 his brother’s house, which is nearly a
 kilometer away, to get water.

When running water was stopped back in
 March, people spent at least three weeks
calling the Hagihon Company & Jerusalem
 Municipality, to restore the water supply
in their neighborhoods.

On March 25th, local residents, community
 leaders and the Association for Civil Rights
 in Israel (ACRI) wrote a petition to the Israeli
 High Court of Justice, over the negligence
that has cut water supplies to tens of
thousands of people.

“This is a humanitarian crisis of the first degree,
and infringes on the right to water, dignity and
 health, especially of children and infants, the
 elderly, the sick and persons with disabilities,”
 said the petition.

According to ACRI, the water infrastructure
 in the affected areas can support only 15,000
 people, and there are over 80,000 in the camps.

Hagihon in its turn, says that "security problems
 (including employees needing to have a police
 escort) and frequent attacks on infrastructure,"
 are preventing the company from carrying out
its maintenance work properly, in Palestinian

On the 2nd April, 2014, the Court told Israeli
officials, to give a response to the petition
within 60 days. That deadline is set for the
first week in June.


Back to burning: Maidan activists set
 tires on fire to protest at their eviction

A group of Maidan activists set burning tires
on fire in Kiev on Saturday, in protest at the
order by Kiev’s newly elected Mayor, Vladimir
Klitshchko, to remove their barricades.

The protest was symbolic, and not on the scale
 anti-government protests reached 4 months ago.

 Some 30 angry activists ignited several tires
 with a Molotov cocktail, and wouldn’t allow a
fire crew to put the flames out.

They threatened to start “a third Maidan” (after
 the first 2004 protest in the “orange revolution”
 and a second in November 2013-February 2014),
unless the order to dismantle the barricades in
the Ukrainian capital, is withdrawn.

Klitshchko, one of 3 main political leaders
 of the second Maidan, was elected mayor
 of Kiev on Sunday, as Ukrainians voted for
 their new president.

 One of his first public statements after securing
 office, was a call to Maidan activists camping
 in the city centre, to leave.

“The key goal of the Maidan - ousting the
 dictator - has been reached, so barricades
should now be dismantled,” he said.

Similar statements came from the elected
 president, Petro Poroshenko:

“No Maidans will affect the president, no
 matter how much anyone might want it.
Otherwise Maidan would no longer be the
will of the people, and would turn into a
common spin technique. I know how to
 deal with such techniques,” he said.

The calls were not heeded at Maidan.

 Some activists criticized Klitshchko
for not taking into account their view,
on whether or not Maidan barricades
should be dismantled.


Children’s ombudsman: Russia to
welcome evacuated Ukrainian

Russia’s Investigative Committee has
 opened a criminal case on unidentified
 persons over the continued shelling of
 civilian areas.

The Ukrainian armed forces, the National
 Guard & the ultranationalist Right Sector,
are named, a spokesperson states

Seven more children were hurt on Friday
as the Ukrainian military shelled the city
 of Slavyansk, a stronghold of protesters,
 in the country’s South East in the night,
Pavel Astakhov, Russia’s ombudsman for
 children’s rights, says.

“According to the public health department
of the Donetsk regional administration, 7
 children were injured by bullets & shrapnel
 in a bombardment by the Ukrainian army,”
Astakhov wrote on Twitter.

Self-defense forces in Slavyansk say
 Ukraine's military shelled the town’s
 residential area during the night, with
one shell hitting a children’s hospital.

A children’s clinic was also damaged
by artillery fire, ITAR-TASS reports.

Russia’s children’s rights ombudsman Pavel
 Astakhov has asked the Russian government
 to provide shelter for Ukrainian families with
 children in combat areas in the south-east of
 Ukraine, the ombudsman’s press office says.

“I've been receiving numerous requests from
 Russian nationals whose relatives - Ukrainian
 citizens - find themselves in combat areas in
 Ukraine’s Southeast, where a real fratricidal
 war has been unleashed,” he says.

 “They plead for help in the evacuation
 of their relatives with children, to
 Russian territory.”

Astakhov has sent telegrams to the federal
 ministers and governors of Russia’s regions
bordering Ukraine, with a request to settle
 all formalities in organising the evacuations:
 ie, crossing the border into Russia, and of
 providing legal status to the families once
they are in Russia.



Russia will certainly provide humanitarian aid to
 the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic
 (DPR) in eastern Ukraine, Russian presidential
 spokesperson, Dmitry Peskov, says on Friday.

Ukraine’s Foreign Ministry has turned down
a recent request to give humanitarian aid
 to the eastern regions, from Russia.

“Humanitarian aid will be given to them for
 sure, but I can’t say anything about military
 aid. The military should be asked about
 that,” Peskov tells Russian media Thursday.

On Wednesday, DPR head Denis Pushilin sent
 Russia an official request, asking the country
 to adopt the DPR as its constituent member,
 as well as provide comprehensive assistance
 to Donetsk Region's people.


Iran Confirms Saudi Friendly Invitation

Iran confirms that its foreign minister,
 Mohammad Javad Zarif, has received
 a friendly invitation from Saudi Arabia
 to visit it.

Iran's Deputy FM, Hussein Amir Abdollahian,
 says Zarif has been invited to attend the OIC
 (Organization of the Islamic Cooperation)
 foreign ministers' meeting, being held on
June the 18th and 19th.


Jaafari: UNSC Must Hold Countries
 Sponsoring Terrorism Accountable

Syria's Permanent Representative to the UN,
 Bashar al-Jaafari, calls on the United Nations
 Security Council to hold accountable those
 states supporting terrorism in Syria.

At a UNSC session on counter-terrorism,
 he stresses the importance of making all
member states refrain from offering any
 form of support to terrorism, pursuant to
 UNSC resolution No 1373, passed in 2001.

Al-Jaafari notes that Damascus has received
 no answer to the tens of letters it has sent to
 various committees on terrorism in Syria, and
 on the possession by armed terrorist groups,
 of chemical weapons, plus the involvement
 of some regional countries in this issue, the
 state news agency, SANA, reports.

Al-Jaafari states that Syria, and tens of other
 member states, such as Iraq, Lebanon, Egypt,
 Libya, Yemen, Russia, China, Kenya, Nigeria,
 Pakistan and others, have witnessed brutal
terrorist acts, in the six months since the
 last briefing of the three counterterrorism
 subcommittees' chairpersons.



Russia will assist Ukraine in establishing a
dialogue with the southeast if Kiev stops its
 military offensive, the Russian Ambassador
 to the United Nations Vitaly Churkin says.

“Stop this military operation, and then we
will help you with establishing dialogue,”
Churkin says, in response to a speech
 made at the UN Security Council meeting
 on Wednesday by Ukraine's ambassador
 to the United Nations, Yuriy Sergeyev.

In his speech, Sergeyev accused Russia
 of kindling separatism.

“The problem of the troubled regions will not
 be solved with artillery strikes or bombing,”
 Churkin states. He says that the Ukrainian
 president elect must start making the right
 decisions, which will not lead to a dead-end.

Churkin has called on UN Secretary General
Ban Ki-moon to get involved in the process of
 ending the military action in eastern Ukraine.

“UN Security Council members must call on
 Kiev to finally realize the need to consider
 the interests of all citizens of the country,
 to immediately end the military operation
 in the southeast,” Churkin says.



UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon expresses
his concern over the "clashes in Donetsk."

"The Secretary-General urges Kiev's authorities
 to regain control in the south-east of Ukraine
“solely by peaceful means”, his spokesperson
 Stefan Dyuzharrik says, commenting on the
Kiev authorities' ultimatum to the militia,
 and aircraft bombing runs near Donetsk.


Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan
Sign Eurasian Economic Union

Russia, Belarus, and Kazakhstan on Thurs
the historic Eurasian Economic Union,
Ukraine conspicuously absent, after the
 current crisis.

Cutting down trade barriers and comprising
 over 170 million people, it will be the largest
 common market across the ex-Soviet states.

"Russia, Belarus & Kazakhstan are going over
 to a fundamentally new level of cooperation,"
President Vladimir Putin says, at the signing
 ceremony in the Kazakh capital of Astana.

"The just-signed treaty is of epoch-making,
 historic importance," Putin states.

The troika of countries will cooperate in
 energy, industry, agriculture, and transport.

"In fact, we are shaping the largest common
market in the CIS, with huge production,
 scientific and technological potential and
enormous natural resources," the Russian
 leader adds.

Belarus and Kazakhstan are in third place in
 foreign trade with the Russian Federation,
after the EU and China, Putin says.

The Russian leader says that the document
 brings Russia, Kazakhstan and Belarus to a new
 level of integration which fully retains sovereignty.

“We ensure a close and coherent economic
 collaboration and cooperation. Today we've
 created a powerful and attractive centre of
 economic development, a big regional market
 that brings together over 170 million people.

 “Our union has huge reserves of natural resources,
 including energy, which account for a fifth of the
world’s gas reserves and 15% of oil reserves,”
 Putin says.

"We lost some along the way: I mean Ukraine,"
 Belarussian President Alexander Lukashenko
 says, at the signing ceremony.

"I'm sure that, sooner or later, the Ukrainian
 leadership will realize where its fortune lies,"
 Lukashenko adds.


14 Ukrainian troops killed as military
 helicopter shot down in east
Armed activists shot down a military helicopter
 near a town in eastern Ukraine, Thursday, killing
14 troops including an army general, the US-coup
selected President, Oleksandr Turchynov, says.

"I just received information that near Slaviansk,
 the terrorists - using a Russian man-portable
 air defence system - shot down our helicopter,"
Turchynov tells a rump parliamentary session.



All of the 80 Ukrainian troops holed up at a
Lugansk military base have surrendered to
self-defense forces, who stormed a military
installation hosting Kiev's National Guards.

The initial assault lasted for 10-15 minutes,
almost unceasing gunfire, witnesses
say. A video
reportedly filmed near the
attacked facility has
appeared on YouTube.

There are conflicting reports on casualties and
 the outcome of the attack, which took place on
the territory of an Air Force academy. Earlier, at
 least one Ukrainian soldier was reported as
 seriously injured.

According to RT, one anti-Kiev protester was
killed in the gunfight, and there have been

 several injures on both sides.

All of the 80 Ukrainian soldiers holed up at
base surrendered, reports RIA Novosti.
servicemen were escorted out of the
as the other side applauded.

Self-defense commander Gennady Tsepkalo
 also confirmed to journalists, that all troops
 have surrendered. He promises that all
soldiers will be sent home, shortly.

It had earlier been reported that only ten
 troops surrendered and others barricaded
 themselves inside the base, with some of
 the soldiers saying that their captain had
 forbidden them from surrendering.

These events occur, as Kiev is intensifying
military operations in eastern Ukraine. On
 Wednesday, Kiev mortar shells hit a school
 and a kindergarten in Slavyansk, injuring at
 least nine civilians.



Against international law, and in defiance
of UN resolutions, and the UN charter, US
 President Barack Obama says the US will
 continue to use force unilaterally, "when
our core interests demand it.”

On Syria, he vows to work with Congress,
to increase US support for the  "moderate"
terrorists fighting the Syrian government.

Obama’s announcements come as reports
 say the US plans to start training militants
 at a secret base in Qatar, to attack Syrian
government troops and vehicles.

Speaking to graduates from West Point
 US Military Academy in New York, the US
president also defends his drone strikes
 in several countries, including Yemen,
Afghanistan, Pakistan and Somalia,
but vows "more transparency".

International reports show the US' drone
 strikes lead to huge civilian casualties.

On Iran’s nuclear energy program, Obama
 repeats his illegal war threat, that the US
 reserves "all options" to “prevent Iran
 obtaining a nuclear weapon.”



As battles continue now, on the outskirts
of Donetsk, coalminers from the Donbass
coalfields rallied in Donetsk Wednesday,
 to demand that Kiev immediately stop its
punitive combat operation in the east.

The rally gathered from 1,000 to 3,000
 miners, according to various estimates.

The action started with a symbolic rally at the
 eternal flame, after which the demonstrators
marched to Donetsk regional administration's
 building, self-defense forces say.

Konstantin Kuzmin, First Deputy Coal Minister
 of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic,
 said on Tuesday, that Donbass coalminers have
declared an indefinite strike, and are demanding
 the withdrawal of the Ukrainian military from the
 Donetsk Region.

 “Donbass coalminers are starting an open-ended
 strike to demand an end to the military crackdown
 and the withdrawal of Ukrainian troops from the
 region,” he said.

Coalminers from the Skochinsky, Abakumov,
 Chelyuskintsev and Trudovskaya coalmines,
as well as from two coalmines near the town
 of Makeyevka, joined the action, he said.

“We expect other coalmines to join our
 action soon,” Kuzmin said.


Punitive operation in Donetsk to continue
 "until self-defense forces are destroyed"

Despite the overwhelming vote by Ukraine's
 Duma that all forces in the South East withdraw,
a representative of the Armed Forces of Ukraine,
Aleksei Dmitrashkovsky, says that Kiev's military
 operations in Donetsk will go on, until all military
 units of the self- proclaimed People's Republic
of Donetsk are destroyed.

"The military operation in Donetsk will continue
 until the forces of the People's Republic of
Donetsk are destroyed, or they surrender,"
he said on Wednesday.

Shortly before this, the official said Ukrainian
troops have killed as many as 200 militiamen.



Volunteer units of the self-proclaimed Donetsk
 People’s Republic (DPR), and Ukraine's army,
 are still engaged in fighting near the Sergey
Prokofyev International Airport in Donetsk,
the DPR's press service said on Wednesday.

According to the press service, shooting
heard near the airport the whole day.

“The republic’s self-defense forces are currently
 controlling almost half of the airport’s territory.
 Both warring parties have been refraining from
 active actions and have got down to positional
 fighting,” the press service said.

The situation remains relatively calm in other
parts of Donetsk. Electricity & water supplies
are normal. Telephone communication with
Donetsk has never been interrupted.

Ukrainian army’s fighter jets patrolled over the
 city earlier on Wednesday. A Ukrainian drone
 was noticed near the regional department of
Ukraine’s Security Service.


Russia warning not so hidden now

In an 'opinion piece' carried by Itar Tass,
the US plan for Ukraine is exposed, and
the growing necessity for Russia to act
decisively soon, is made very clear...

The United States and NATO have thrown
 their weight behind Poroshenko’s latest
 actions, the opinion piece states, and
Kiev's plan to start Ukraine’s secession
 from the Commonwealth of Independent
 States, is just the start.

Alexei Podberyozkin, analyst:

“All attempts to forecast a favorable march
of events in Ukraine are fundamentally wrong.
 Chaos in Ukraine is snowballing in all spheres.
 The election of a new president will not bring
 about any fundamental change.

One oligarch has been replaced by another,
and the very same oligarchs have seized
power in the regions.

Now they will follow their own unwritten
 spoken code of conduct, the way they have
 been doing all the way, even when holding
 senior civil service posts.

They've no intention to make long-term plans,
 let alone establish a constructive relationship
with Moscow, simply because many of them
 have undergone “crash instruction courses”
 in the West,” the director of the Centre for
Military-Political Studies at Moscow State
 Institute of International Relations (MGIMO),
says in a recent interview.
“The new president has no clear legitimacy
 or his own team. The one that's now in power
will get paid for the job done by its overseas
 handlers - and vanish into thin air,” he says.

It is the US that runs the show in Ukraine.
On Monday, the EU’s energy commissioner,
 Gunther Oettinger, said that Ukraine would
 pay its two-billion-dollar outstanding debt
 for natural gas by Thursday.

But Kiev, so eager to enter the European Union,
 has preferred to defy this message, on orders
 from Washington. It's not accidental that Sergei
 Lavrov has described Washington’s intervention
 in the gas conflict between Russia and Ukraine
 as “laughable.”

This is a statement of the hard fact, of who,
 in reality, runs the show in Ukraine,” the
analyst says.

“The United States is keen to preserve a two-
thousand-kilometer-long belt of instability
 along the border between Russia and Ukraine.

“For 23 years Washington has pursued a strategic
 policy of preventing Ukraine’s integration with
 Russia in any form, of nurturing a Russophobic
 elite hostile to Russia. In fact, Washington has
 achieved its aim,” Podberyozkin says.

“Kiev’s hope for integration with the EU and
 admission to NATO arouses much skepticism.
 It is a great headache for the West. Ukraine
 may be integrated with individual EU and
 NATO programs, but surely not as a fully-
fledged member.

The West needs the 45-million Ukrainian
 population as a consumer, but not as a
provider of coal, steel or rolling stock.

The EU is perfectly aware that in order to
 tear Ukraine away from Russia it has to be
 offered something - not very much, though
 - in compensation. Therefore the forecast
 for Ukraine looks unconsoling.

It may find itself in the position of Bulgaria
 or Romania, countries abandoned by their
 intellectuals where industries are degrading
 and unemployment is sky-high,”
 Podberyozkin says.

“As for Ukraine’s intention to leave the CIS, Kiev
 will be in no hurry to take that step, otherwise
 it would have to cancel the visa-free regimen -
or be prepared to welcome home 3 to 5 million
 Ukrainians who are earning a living in Russia,”
 he says.

“Poroshenko’s wish to employ the military
 scenario to put Ukraine’s eastern regions
 under control, may worsen the situation
 still more.

In these regions, Russian speakers account
 for a majority of the population. Russia will
 be unable to ignore that fact,” the analyst
 warns sharply.

The president of the National Strategy Institute,
a member of the military-industrial commission
 under the Russian government, Mikhail Remizov,
says this:

“By pushing ahead with the so-called counter-
terrorist operation in the Southeast, where a
 majority of the population is pro-Russia minded,
 Kiev puts itself in a situation where beginning
 a dialogue with Moscow will
only be possible,
 on protecting the interests of Russian speakers
 in the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Luhansk
people’s republics.”

“Kiev’s intention to start a process of secession
 from the CIS, is not an infringement of Russia’s
 interests,” he continues.

“On the contrary, it is an excuse for ignoring
 the existing norms of free trade between
Ukraine and the other members of the CIS,”
 the political scientist says.

“The Ukrainian political elite’s plans for holding
 a referendum on joining NATO, does not mean
 that the North Atlantic Alliance will be ready to
 admit a very weak country. Hypothetically, the
 presence of NATO’s military facilities in Ukraine
 territory -- in other words, the alliance’s military
 presence near the Russian border -- should not
be ruled out.

 “Nor should one exclude the possibility of creating
 a miniature copy of NATO, consisting of the Baltic
 countries, Poland and Ukraine,” the analyst says.

“In a situation like this, Russia should achieve the
 guaranteed recognition of the rights of Russian
 speakers in the Southeast of Ukraine within the
 tightest deadlines. Otherwise, the situation may
 go out of control,” Remizov also warns, clearly.



Israeli forces have shot and injured at least 4
 Palestinian worshippers in al-Aqsa Mosque,
 in East al-Quds (Jerusalem).

Local sources say clashes erupted at the mosque
 compound when Palestinian worshippers protested
at the presence of Israeli extremists in the holy
 Islamic site.

Israelis were commemorating "Jerusalem Day,"
 which marks the anniversary of Israel's capture
 of East al-Quds (Jerusalem), in 1967.

Witnesses say Israeli forces fired stun grenades
 and rubber bullets at the Palestinian protesters.
 A number of worshippers were pepper-sprayed.

Al-Aqsa Mosque has seen frequent clashes
 in recent months, following frequent visits
 by Israeli settlers & officials to the holy site.

Israel is facing mounting pressure to rein in
 a spiraling wave of hate crimes by Israelis,
mainly in the form of vandalism and graffiti,
 targeting mosques and Christian churches.

Israel's authorities are systematically acting
 to alter East al-Quds' identity and character.

A report published by the al-Aqsa Foundation
 in October, says the Israeli regime is planning
 to build a new synagogue in al-Aqsa Mosque
 compound, as part of its efforts to 'Judaize'
 the occupied Palestinian territories.

Over decades, Israel has tried to change
the demographic makeup of al-Quds, by
 building illegal settlements, destroying
historical sites, and expelling the local
 Palestinian population.

Over half a million Israelis live in over
120 settlements built since the 1967
 Israeli occupation of the West Bank
and East al-Quds.

The world's nations, even the Western
ones, consider the settlements as illegal.



Naseer Al-Omari a political commentator based
in the US, says "all the signs are there", that the
Zionist plan to "cleanse" a 'Greater Israel', is on.

 "The Palestinians have been given Jordanian
 passports. Jordanians find out every now
and then that the process never really stops.
"People who come from Gaza, people who come
 from the West Bank, are kind of 'encouraged'
 to stay in Jordan.

"And now there is a fear that this regime will
probably sign away the country, the way his
father signed that peace agreement at the
expense of Jordanians.

"They were promised, back then, open
economic relations with the Israeli entity
and prosperity... and it turns out that all
 the Jordanians got was more poverty...
& more loss of control over their country.

"No wonder Jordanians are anxious, they are
 kept in the dark, and this regime is engaged
 in all kinds of wheeling and dealing behind
 the country’s back.

 "The parliament doesn't know what's happening.
It's a small group of people who run the country
 as they wish, without the knowledge of the


National Thai Boxing Federation
chief elected as Odessa mayor -
takes oath under heavy guard

Gennady Trukhanvov beat his rival, Eduard
 Gurvits - backed by President-elect Petro
 Poroshenko - by 43.39% to 32,02%.

New Odessa Mayor Gennady Trukhanov took
the oath under heavy police guard, as police
 cordoned off the building to prevent followers
 of the rival candidate, Eduard Gurvitz, from
  causing any disturbance near the Odessa
 Council building.

 On Monday, Eduard Gurvitz' supporters blocked
 the building of a territorial election commission,
 paralyzed traffic in nearby streets, accused the
 "pro-Russian'' forces of falsification of results,
 and demanded that Gurvits be proclaimed the
winner, in the mayoral election.

Governor of the Odessa region Igor Palitsya
 is urging the Odessa's population not to
build up tension "merely because someone
disliked the results, or had to account for
 money spent on Eduard Gurvits' election
 campaign", the governor says.

 "Wise and mature politicians never use
people as cannon fodder to resolve their
 tasks," the Odessa governor says.



Ukraine’s forces have blocked all exits from
 Donetsk and are not letting even passenger
 buses leave the area of a military operation,
 a militia representative said on Tuesday.

"The only road out of the city is towards the
 settlement of Makeyevka, but you'll need
 detours to get there anyway," he said.

Meanwhile, the city has scrambled to evacuate
 schools and all the housing and public utilities
 departments have been ordered to prepare bomb
 shelters in case of active fighting and bombing.

The press service of the self-proclaimed Donetsk
 People's Republic, says that the Kiev authorities
 resumed their punitive operation at 12.00 pm,
 local time, on Tuesday.

 The population was warned beforehand that
 they could leave the Donetsk territory, but
 people are reluctant to leave their homes.

Armed clashes in the area of Donetsk Sergey
 Prokofiev International Airport, are ongoing.

Combat aircraft, including jets and helicopters,
are now being used in the rebel territory. The
 fighting in the area of the airport, continued
throughout Monday and tuesday night, and
both sides claimed they held the space.


Sloviansk leader suggests
 evacuating Sloviansk

Vyacheslav Ponomaryov, the leader of Sloviansk
 volunteer units, suggests evacuating everybody
who wishes to leave the city.

“We suggest preparing children and adults who
 wish to leave the city for evacuation. We have
 everything ready to evacuate them. I believe
 that today we will decide where they can go,”
 Ponomaryov says at a meeting of the self-
proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic.

 He says Sloviansk’s civilian population could
 be resettled in other parts of the republic,
 including Svyatogorsk and Brusino.

Denis Pushilin, chair of the presidium of the
self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic,
 says the total casualties the military attack
has caused, has reached about 100 people,
 including 20 to 50 civilians.



 In Mariupol, the headquarters of the self-
proclaimed People's Republic of Donetsk
was attacked, the republic’s new press
service said, on Tuesday.

“Firing continues at our HQ in Mariupol,”
 the source said. The attackers wear black
 uniforms with no markings, the source added.
No information about casualties is available.


Self-Defence Units fight for Airport

The people’s militia of the self-proclaimed
 Donetsk People’s Republic brought down
Ukrainian Armed Forces helicopters 
in combat operations near the Donetsk
international airport, the chair of the
presidium of the DNR Supreme Council,
 Denis Pushilin, says.

“Earlier, the leadership of the republic made
 a decision to assume control over the airport.
This occurred after Kiev launched a punitive
 operation in the southeast of Ukraine, and
began to increasingly use the airport to
 deliver military cargoes and manpower for
 military units and combat formations under
its control,” he says.

Representatives from the self-proclaimed republic
 arrived at the airport “demanding the withdrawal
 from its territory of the Ukrainian troops guarding
 the inner perimeter,” he says. After the sides failed
 to settle the conflict peacefully, exchanges of fire
 took place, that turned into a major armed clash.

The Kiev-controlled units attempted to regain
 control over the airport, using helicopters as
 well as assault aircraft in the operation.



A lorry carrying the wounded in Donetsk was
fired at on Monday, killing at least 24 people
of the self-defence forces, a correspondent
 from St. Petersburg’s Fifth Channel, Leonid
 Muravyev, tells Itar-Tass, by telephone.

The correspondent was at the scene and
witnessed the tragedy.



Ukrainian forces resumed artillery fire on Monday
 morning on Semyonovka, near Sloviansk, which
 is still under siege, and 2 unarmed civilians were
killed by artillery fire.



The self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic
 in eastern Ukraine has started switching over
to Russian laws, Denis Pushilin, chair of the
 DPR Supreme Council presidium, said Tuesday.

“Today a decision was made to start intensively
 switching over to Russian laws,” Pushilin said.
All ministries of the self-proclaimed republic,
now in operation, he added.


Ukrainian Rebels Rule Out
President-elect''s Visit 

 The head of the provisional government of the
 People''s Republic of Donetsk, self-proclaimed
as independent from Ukraine, Denis Pushilin,
says it's unlikely that Ukrainian President-
elect Piotr Poroshenko, will visit there.

"When someone is elected president, they
 always plan to visit a neighboring country
first. We see his idea of visiting Donbass,
 from that viewpoint, says Pushilin, as
quoted by Novosti news agency.

The rebel leader of the mining and industrial
 region notes that any kind of negotiation with
 the new Ukrainian President, will be possible
 "only in the presence of mediators", he says,
 alluding to Russia.

Pushilin warns that the issues on any talks
agenda, would be an exchange of hostages
 and a withdrawal by the Army and neo-Nazi
squadrons of the Right Sector and Maidan
self-defense units, which now make up the
National Guard.

Poroshenko said that his first stop will be
 south-east Ukraine - which early Monday
was attacked by Kiev fighter jets, attack
helicopters and special forces, at the
main airport
in the Republic of Donetsk.

Donetsk self-defense forces and National
units also clashed near the railway
station of Donetsk.

 Shooting and explosions could be heard from
area, in a reported attempt by Ukraine’s
s to get into the city.

Fighting also took place between the local
people’s militia and National Guard units on
 the outskirts of the city and nearby hamlets.

Fighting occurred in Grobari (8 km from
 the airport) and Avdeyevka (10 km away).

Clashes also took place on Stratonavtov
 Street (500m from the airport), where a
group of Russian and foreign reporters,
came under fire, early on Monday.

Fighting continued with sub-machine and
 machine-guns, and grenade launchers.

Cordoned-off areas grew, and Donetsk law
enforcement officers asked all drivers to
do a U-turn and drive towards the city
 centre, to pick up people from those
areas that had come under fire.

 Earlier, eight combat helicopters as well as
 two fighter aircraft were seen over the city.

 According to the people’s militia of Donetsk,
 National Guard units did seize the airport
territory back, and snipers began shooting
at the perimeter, from nearby tall buildings.

The whole of the South East of Ukraine is
being shaken by the military offensive by
Kiev,  involving over 10,000 troops, backed

 by armour, fighter planes & heavy weapons.



The head of Germany’s largest power generator
says Europe should avoid any escalation in its
relations with Russia, against the backdrop of
the Ukrainian political crisis.

“If you live in Europe, particularly in Germany,
 and have numerous contacts with Russia,
we’re treading on eggshells,” RWE AG chief
executive Peter Terium tells Bloomberg.
need to maneuvre very carefully, in
order not
to escalate.”

RWE and other European utilities receive about
 30% of their gas supply from Russia. About half
of that comes via Ukraine’s pipeline network.

“We will not see a very quick, simple solution,
 but better a long, difficult solution, than an
escalation,” Terium says in London.



Official results from Colombia’s presidential
election show that incumbent President,
Juan Manuel Santos, and his rival Oscar
Ivan Zuluaga, will have to go to a runoff.

With nearly all votes counted, Zuluaga
received 29.3%, while Santos trailed with
25.6% in the first-round of elections.

Neither gathered over 50% of the votes -
needed to avoid a second round vote
 on June 15th.

Colombia’s presidential race is widely seen
 as a referendum on Santos’ 18-month peace
 negotiations with the country’s rebels, to
end the 50-year-old conflict.

After the release of the results, Santos says
 the runoff will be a choice “between those
 who want an end to the war and those who
 prefer a war without end.”

Zuluaga, a former finance minister, repeats
 his criticism of the peace process, vowing to
 scrap negotiations with the Revolutionary
Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC).

The FARC has been fighting the government
 since 1964. Bogota estimates that 600,000
 people have been killed and over 4.5 million
 displaced, due to the fighting.

Columbia's  Defense Minister Juan Carlos Pinzon
 says the Sunday vote was the “safest election
 day in recent history,” as there was a ceasefire.

Why should anyone care about Columbia?

 Several recent events, ignored by all the
mainstream media, make it very clear why:

First, Human Rights Watch released a report
 just this week, detailing the grisly practices
 of paramilitary death squads in a port town
 called Buenaventura.

   These practices by paramilitaries, who act with
 impunity and with the tacit support of the local
 police, include the disappearance of hundreds
of civilians; the displacement of whole villages;
 and the dismemberment of individuals, while
 they are still alive, in local “chop houses.”

  Buenaventura is to be the model city of
 the US-Colombia Free Trade Agreement.

 Jose Vivanco of HRW calls Buenaventura
 “the scandal” of Colombia.   Sadly, it is not
 Colombia’s only one.

This weekend, the VI Division of the Colombian
Army hit the peasant town of Alto Amarradero,
Ipiales, in the middle of the night, and, without
 warrant and in cold blood, gunned down four
civilians, including a 15-year old boy.

 Those killed were  Deivi López Ortega, José
 Antonio Acanamejoy, Brayan Yatacue Secue
 and José Yiner Esterilla — all members of the
 FENSUAGRO agricultural union. 

The Army then displayed the bodies of those
 murdered for all to see, and falsely claimed
 that they were the bodies of guerillas killed
 in combat.

These are the latest victims of the ongoing
“false positive” phenomenon in which nearly
 6,000 progressive civilians have been killed
and then passed off as guerillas, to justify
 the continued 'counterinsurgency' program
 in Colombia, and the US aid that funds it.

 As Father Francisco de Roux, S.J., recently said
 at a peace conference in Washington, “if these
 ‘false positive’ killings happened anywhere else,
 they would be a scandal !”

 However, having happened in Colombia, the
 US’s closest ally in the Western Hemisphere,
these killings are being ignored by US media
and policy-makers.

A report by the Fellowship of Reconciliation,
out now, demonstrates how there is a direct
 link between US military funding and training,
 particularly at the School of the Americas,
and the incidence of human rights abuses,
 including “false positive” killings. 

The report concludes that “of the 25 Colombian
 WHINSEC instructors and graduates for which
 any subsequent information was available, 12
 of them – 48% — had either been charged with
 a serious crime or commanded units whose
members had reportedly committed multiple
 extrajudicial killings.”

   Moreover, “some of the officers with the largest
number of civilian killings committed under their
 command (Generals Lasprilla, Rodriguez Clavijo,
 and Montoya, and Colonel Mejia), received
 significantly more US training, on average,
than other officers”.

The head of the US’s Southern Command,
 General John Kelly, recently explained to
 a Congressional hearing, that the US is
 using Colombian military personnel for
 military training in other Latin American
countries, to get around human rights
restrictions, which prevent the US from
 doing the training directly. 

As Kelly explained, in a moment of candor:

    “The beauty of having a Colombia – they’re
such good partners, particularly in the
military realm, they’re such good partners
with us.

“When we ask them to go somewhere else
 and train the Mexicans, the Hondurans, the
 Guatemalans, the Panamanians, they will
 do it almost without asking. And they’ll do it
 on their own. They’re so appreciative of what
 we did for them. And what we did for them
 was, really, to encourage them for 20 years,
 and they’ve done such a magnificent job.

   “But that’s why it’s important for them to go,
 because I’m – at least on the military side –
restricted from working with some of these
 countries because of limitations that are,
 that are really based on past sins. And I’ll
 let it go at that.”

In other words, the US is exporting the vile
genocidal practices of the Colombian military
 (practices the US trained them in to begin with)
throughout Latin America. 

  The silence on this really is deafening.


Ukrainian oligarch Poroshenko wins
with over 50% of votes – exit polls

Says he refuses any recognition for
Donetsk, Lugansk, and even Crimea.

Ukrainian confectionary tycoon Pyotr Poroshenko
 has won the presidential election in the 1st round,
 with over 50% of the votes, several exit polls show.

 His "nearest rival", Tymoshenko, who threatened
 to call “Maidan 3.0” if she lost,
had 12.8%, the exit
polls suggest.

All other candidates gathered less than 10%.
 Anti-Russian populist Oleg Lyashko, the Radical
 Party head, had 8%, ex defense minister Anatoly
 Gritsenko, 6.3% and expelled Party of Regions
 MP Sergey Tigipko, 4.7% of votes.

The candidate picked by the Party of Regions,
 Mikhail Dobkin, gained just 2.1%. Some 1.1%
 voted for Ukraine's Communist Party leader,
 Pyotr Simonenko, despite his announcement
earlier this week, that he had withdrawn.

Ultra-right nationalists appear to have
 completely failed. Svoboda (Freedom)
Party head Oleg Tyagnibok, had 1.3%,
 and Right Sector boss, Dmitry Yarosh,
 was supported by under 1%.

According to the prospective winner,
parliamentary elections will be held
 in Ukraine "before the end of 2014".

Poroshenko, at his press conference:
 “we will have a united and unitary,
not federative state.”

"I am certain that our decisive actions will
 bring fairly quick results," he states now,
 confirming that a military “anti-terrorist”
operation in eastern Ukraine, is to go on.

Poroshenko says he will not recognize
 the results of the Crimean referendum,
or the eastern regions' referenda, which
 resulted in both Donetsk and Lugansk
proclaimed as people’s republics and
has led recently, to their full military
mobilisation, as Novo-russia.

He says he will talk to President Putin,
and "everything will be sorted out."

The Vice President says military
operations start "within hours."

According to the latest data presented to the
Central election Committee, just before polls
closed, the voter turnout for all Ukraine, was



President Zuma to Tighten Fight
            against Unemployment, Corruption               
 South Africa's President Jacob Zuma now
 promises to improve social equity, optimize
 the distribution of land and tighten the fight
 against unemployment and corruption.

Zuma took office as head of state for a
second term in office until 2019, after his
 party, the African National Congress (ANC)
 won overwhelmingly in recent elections.

The next 5 years will see radical socioeconomic
 transformations, policies and programmes, as
 economic transformation and inclusive growth
take centre stage among S. Africa's priorities,
 President Jacob Zuma said on Saturday, in
 his acceptance speech.

"The new mandate is also a license to continue
with our ambitious infrastructure building
 programme, and ensure the provision of better
 roads, universities and colleges, hospitals,
 dams, railway lines and and power stations
 that boost economic and social development,"
 he said.

"More importantly, this mandate gives us the
 green light to implement South Africa's National
 Development Plan, and to promote inclusive
 economic growth and job creation," President
Zuma added.

The president also said the ANC will give priority
 to the eradication of corruption and inefficiency,
 and promote productivity in the public service
 through better accountability.



This is the transcript from an interview
 by Press TV with Webster Griffin Tarpley,
historian and journalist, from Washington,
 to discuss, with him, the crisis in Ukraine.

What follows is a rough transcription of the interview.

Press TV: Can this presidential election
bring stability and peace
back to Ukraine?

I doubt it very much for a number of reasons.
First of all, on the level of the formalities of this
election, the election is being conducted in an
 atmosphere of fascist & neo-Nazi terror, which
 is unleashed by the clique, this illegal putsch
 government which arrogated power to itself in
 Kiev, and now puts itself up as the competent
 authority to organize these elections.

Remember, these are the fascists of the Svoboda
 Party and the outright hooligan Nazis of the Right
 Sector, who have been legalized and legitimized
as the so-called national guard of the country,
 and what have they done?

First of all, we had a legally elected president,
 a dubious character, but there he was. He was
 about as legitimate as any president in the world,
and that was [Victor] Yanukovych. He was forced
 out of the country. He was driven to flee for his
life from the country, on February 21st.

He was then impeached by the [Verkhovna] Rada,
 but it wasn’t the legal Rada, the parliament. It was
 the rump Rada from which a lot of members from
the party of the regions and indeed the communist
 party, had been driven out. So they didn’t really
 reach a quorum, the number of votes necessary
 to eject Yanukovych from the presidency.

In the meantime, there are several hundred members
 of the Rada who have simply been terrorized into not
 showing up. The few that have showed up and tried
 to oppose the self-styled government, that is to say
 the [Oleksandr] Turchynov and [Arseniy] Yatsenyuk
 regime, a lot of the members of the Rada have been
 beaten up.

We’ve also had presidential candidates in this
 election who have been beaten up and forced
 to withdraw their candidacy.

If you watch Ukrainian TV, which you can see
 here every evening at 11:30, you could see
that in the parliament, in the Rada, you had
the communist party head, complaining that
there's a fascist regime now in the country,
and Turchynov behind him simply said, ‘you
shut up, you sit down, and we’re going to
declare your party illegal’.

Then of course in addition to that, 50 to over 100
 people killed in Odessa. And this is simply not a fire.
 These were fascist gangs apparently paid for by the
 oligarch, [Ihor] Kolomoyskyi, who were going through
 this building and shooting people, and this constant
 attack - sometimes by the Ukrainian army but
 generally by this national guard Right Sector - in
 other words, fascist guys, military police attacking
 in the east. I can’t see how this could be an election.

Press TV: Mr. Tarpley, how important is the turnout
 overall for this election, in your perspective?

Tarpley: I don’t think the turnout really is going to
 change anything in the character of what I said
 before. It may be large. It may be small. This is
 harder to say.

Let’s look at the candidates. One candidate is the out
 and out Nazi thug, hooligan street fighter brown-
shirt, that would be Dmitry Yarosh. He’s the head
 of the Right Sector. He’s actually in the government,
 indirectly, but he’s in it.

Then we’ve got a more refined fascist, sort of a
 fascist in a business suit, and that’s Oleh Tyahnybok.
 And Tyahnybok has been around for a while. If you
 look at various studies of European fascism funded
 by organizations that my colleague on the show here
 probably knows and respects, and you can see that
 Tyahnybok is often sighted as an example of neo-
fascism in eastern Europe. But of course maybe
 he’s mellowed over the years.

Then we have Tymoshenko, the blonde lady, you’ve
 seen her - the gas princess, the kleptocrat, a NATO
 agent. She’s the one who took over thanks to the
 Orange Revolution organized by NATO intelligence,
 the National Endowment for Democracy, Freedom
 House and the political parts of USAID, the US
 Agency for International Development, don’t
 forget them.

This Tymoshenko is of course a jailbird. She
 was put in jail, and I think richly deserved, on
 corruption charges: because she is one of the
 richest of the oligarchs in the country.

Then we have Poroshenko or Padashenka, the so-
called Chocolate King, the Willy Wonka of Ukraine.
This is a fantastically rich oligarch. He’s a billionaire.
 You wonder what can he understand of the daily
 drama of a working family anywhere in Ukraine.
 I think not very much.

He seems to be acceptable to Victoria Nuland and
 the State Department and the CIA. Maybe we’ll be
 hearing a telephone conversation from Victoria
 Nuland soon where that foul-mouthed lady will
 express her preferences, who she wants. It
looks like Poroshenko.

This is a guy who tried to ride the tiger of fascism.
It was well known that Poroshenko was the sponsor
 of the Maidan and the euro-Maidan - in other words,
 this hooligan encampment in the middle of Kiev - and
 he actually paid stipends. If you wanted to come out,
if you were a Right Sector thug hooligan with a
 Molotov cocktail that you were willing to throw at
 the police, Poroshenko would give you 25 dollars
 a day, minimum, and maybe 50 dollars if you were
 really, really violent. So that’s the guy – he’s going
 to ride that kind of a background.

The Poroshenko campaign was hooligans with
 Molotov bottles burning policemen alive and killing
 them too, taking them into a back alley and killing
 them. That’s going to be the new president of

And of course, he’s going to be a puppet of the
 International Monetary Fund, the European
 Central Bank and of course the US and European
 Commission. He is going to try then to impose an
 absolutely brutal, and I would say genocidal
 austerity that includes things like doubling the
 price of gas, methane, what they use for cooking
 and heating, giving away the Black Earth Farm
 region, giving away the coal and steel capacity
 of Kryvyi Rih and the Donetsk Donbas, giving
away the gas distribution system which was built
 under the Soviet Union – simply giving those
things to Western companies as part of the IMF
 conditions, and absolutely destroying the social
 safety net. That basically guarantees there will be
 no stability in Ukraine. No way.

Press TV: Definitely interesting lineup when
we’re listening to you...Mr. Tarpley.

Tarpley: [In response to previous guest speaker,
 Peter Sinnott, comments over social welfare in
 Russia and Ukraine] How about the European
 Commission, do they social welfare really well?
 If we go to Greece and we see people starving
in the streets, or Spain with 40 percent youth
 unemployment, is that what they’re going
 to choose?

I think the rational course for Ukraine – if there’s
 going to be a Ukraine, and that’s a big “if” – would
 be to try to get the best of both, try to get the best
 of the customs union that Putin is proposing and
 try to get some benefits from the European Union.
But that’s not what’s being offered.

The government that’s going to come out of the
 elections - and I don’t care how many people vote
- it will be an International Monetary Fund puppet
 regime. They have already signed the contracts.
 They are already getting tranches of the money
 from Madam [Christine] Lagarde over here at the
 International Monetary Fund. It’s going to be
killer austerity.

Fascism comes in many forms. There’s the old-
fashioned fascism with Tyahnybok and Yarosh,
 right? –The sort of brown-shirt, black-shirt street
 hooligan stuff. But then there’s the International
 Monetary Fund version which is that you carry
out genocide through austerity so severe that
people begin to die.

Now the only way out of this in the short run would
 be two things, neutralization, Finlandization. There
is a law I think still on the books – anyways, there
 was a law passed by this Rada in 2010 that Ukraine
 would be a neutral country. Neutral in a sense that
 Switzerland is neutral; or if we go back to the Cold
 War, Finland, Sweden or Austria. Those were
neutral countries. They did okay.

The Finlandization of Ukraine would essentially say
 Russia has reasonable demands. Russia has been
 invaded from the West so many times, they have
a good reason. It’s fair to say you don’t want a
hostile NATO country on your border with a bunch
 of fascists dominating the political scene.

The other thing is, Russia needs warm water ports,
 access to the oceans, ice-free harbors. That’s the
 story with Crimea. It’s also the story with Odessa.

The other thing is that since the Soviet Union bore
 the brunt of Hitlerism, it’s understandable that they
 don’t want to see that flare-up once again along
their own borders. I think in order to meet all those
 legitimate demands, neutralization and a
confederal solution.

[In response to guest speaker, Peter Sinnott's
 comments over foreign influence on independent
 countries surrounding Russia] How about Mexico,
 does Mexico have such a right? Does Mexico have
 a right to ally with Russia?

Press TV: Mr. Tarpley, one minute, sir.

Tarpley: I would ask again, if that were Mexico
 making a deal with Moscow, I think our friend
would be singing a different tune. How about
Cuba? Cuba has simply tried to assert the
ability to have a free foreign policy. I wonder
where you come down on that.

But I think the basic solution is a Finlandization.
 You got this from many members of the US foreign
 policy establishment, and a confederation – not
even a federation but a confederation, something
like Austria-Hungary, as you have two Ukraines.

You’ve got the eastern Ukraine which is orthodox
and Russian. Then you've got the Western Ukraine
which is unionate Greek Catholic and it’s centered
in this place called Lavov - Lviv, Lemberg, Leopol,
Leopoli. That seems to be the capital of fascism
in modern Ukraine.

There’s an
even deeper question which is,
is there a Ukraine? Is this a country at all?
It’s only existed at different times for about
25 years. It was created by the German
general staff at the end of World War I,
 in 1918, as a means of weakening Russia.

Every time Ukraine asserts independence,
 this seems to go together with massacres,
right? - The Pogroms massacre of Jews by
Petliura in 1919, and then again by Stepan
Bandera, the Nazi collaborator.

By the way, Finland of course, under Marshal
 Mannerheim, was directly allied with Hitler, and
 I’m afraid we’re getting closer to an apology for
fascism. They were certainly an enemy of the
 United States at that time.

The idea is, is this really a country given this radical
 differentiation? And what we just had today is this:
 about 40 to 50 percent of the country asserted its
 separate existence in the form of a no-vote or
a “seeya!”.

You have to remember, Odessa was never part of
 Ukraine. Donetsk was added to Ukraine by German
 planners because Germany wanted to loot the coal
 and steel under the treaty of Brest Litovsk. So they
 wanted to add that. I don’t know if we can be sure
 that there will be a Ukraine for very much longer.



A mob of over 20 Britain First fascists marched
 on an east London mosque, on the eve of the
local and European elections, reports the
Morning Star daily.

Britain First leader Paul Golding led his party’s
 “south-east brigade” in a provocative military
 style march past, on a mosque on Brick Lane.

Waving Union Jacks, the party’s foot soldiers
 conducted what Mr Golding calls a “Christian
 patrol”, with an armoured Land Rover and a
 convey of four other cars.

Dozens of police officers swooped on the
 street gang, to prevent the situation from
turning violent.

Natasha Daniels wrote on Twitter that she
was enjoying a curry on the street, when
“some morons with Union Jacks and a tank/
car thing came down, followed by loads
of police.”

She added that most of the Britain First
members “hid in the cars.”

In a press release boasting of their latest
 racist action, Britain First moaned that the
police “held our activists captive for an
 inordinate amount of time.”

Unite Against Fascism spokesperson,
 Weyman Bennett, says the thugs’ act,
 is a symptom of the dangerously racist
 atmosphere being created by the likes
 of Nigel Farage.

He says: “With Ukip’s shameless attempt to
whip up racism against immigrants, fascist
 movements try to distinguish themselves
 then, by acting in a military way.

“They’re former BNP members and they’ve
 made a harder turn to a military element
 on the streets.”

Thursday’s march on Brick Lane, near historic
 Cable Street, is the latest in a string of marches
 on, and invasions of, mosques around England,
 by Britain First.

They stormed into the East London Mosque
twice last week, trying to frighten worshipers,
by handing them anti-Islamic propaganda.

Mr Bennett says their increasingly violent acts
 are the result of frustration with the group’s
 lack of success.

“We consider them to be a small fascist group
 trying to make it into the big time, by trying
 stunts like this.

“But they still face formidable obstacles
 in trying to do this. As long as we remain
unified, we can stop them.”


Russian leftists blast Kiev plans
 to ban Ukrainian Communist Party

Russia’s KPRF attacks plans by the interim
 president of Ukraine, to ban the Communist
as a threat to all leftist and patriotic
forces, saying
such a step is typical of past
fascist regimes.

“All fascist regimes in the world started their
 activities with a ban on Communist parties.

 Such threats threaten all the leftist popular
 and patriotic forces,” the leader of Russian
 Communists, Gennady Zyuganov, says at a
 roundtable discussion, in the State Duma.

Zyuganov says the Communist Party of the
 Russian Federation has prepared a draft
motion against these attempts to ban the
Communist Party of Ukraine, and will be
 submitting it to the Lower House, in the
near future.

The Communist Party chief also adds that he
 doubts that the crisis in Ukraine will change,
after the forthcoming presidential poll.

 “The suggestion that 'everything will settle
down there after May 25th,' is an illusion.
Presently, there are not the conditions in
Ukraine, for holding normal elections,”
he says.

Zyuganov calls on the Russian authorities
to give greater support to the residents of
 the South-Eastern regions of Ukraine, who
 support the federalization of the country.

 “No one is demanding to send in troops, but
 we have the right to support our friends and
brothers,” he says. “It's our duty to express
 our common will, and do everything to help
 the Ukrainian people get rid of the fascist
 junta that is trying to establish itself --- with
 US guidance,” Zyuganov tells Russian MPs.

The centre-left Fair Russia party backs this.
“We are unconditionally supporting the motion
 in support of the Ukrainian Communist Party,
 because, while approaches to ideology might
 differ, a ban on a political parliamentary party
 in any country is a nonsense, and should not
be allowed,” Fair Russia leader, Sergey
 Mironov, says.

On Monday, Ukraine’s acting president,
 Aleksandr Turchinov, asked the Justice
to ban the Communist Party ---
for its alleged
involvement in the pro-
federalist movement in
Donetsk and
Lugansk Regions, that, in his opinion,

threaten Ukraine's territorial integrity
national security.

The communists' policies have an openly
constitutional character, Turchinov
said, in his
letter to the rightwing interim
Justice Minister.

In mid-May. the leader of the Communist
of Ukraine, Pyotr Symonenko, said
that the
current Kiev regime is killing
peaceful civilians
in the country's south-
east, and spreading lies
about the real

 Symonenko has called on Kiev to stop its
 “anti-terrorist operation,” saying it is now a
“terrorist operation against
its own people.”

State Duma speaker, Sergey Naryshkin, said
on Wednesday, that Symonenko had planned
 to attend the roundtable in Russia, but could
not, because of the threats to his personal
made in Ukraine.

 Naryshkin added that Symonenko had to
withdraw from the Ukrainian presidential
 race, for the same reason.

Several other candidates were also forced
to withdraw, after beatings, and/or
to themselves and their families. 



The city of Sloviansk ( in Donetsk region)
 and its adjoining settlements have again
 been subjected to intense artillery fire in
 which dwelling houses were destroyed.

 According to the self-defence forces, “over
10 gunmen were killed” in the clashes that
continued for about three hours.

 In response to the increase in combat
 actions, the self-proclaimed Donetsk
 People’s Republic (DPR) has launched
 a general mobilisation.

 The DPR press service tells ITAR-TASS that
 recruiting stations were opened on Friday
where men aged from 19 to 40 years must
 turn up to enlist.

On Thursday, martial law was declared in the
 neighbouring self-proclaimed Luhansk People’s
 Republic (LPR) and a total mobilisation of men
 aged from 18 to 45 years was announced.

Chief of the General Staff of the Russian Armed
 Forces, General Valery Gerasimov, states at the
 3rd International Security Conference in Moscow
on Friday that the conflict in Ukraine has now
grown into a civil war.

 He says that the Russian Defense Ministry has
 at its disposal the facts on the participation of
 private military companies in events in Ukraine.

Appointed by the Ukrainian Verkhovna Rada,
  the interim PM of Ukraine, Arseniy Yatsenyuk,
 believes that nothing can or will prevent Ukraine
holding a snap presidential election on May 25th.

 Head of the special operation in the east of the
 country, Valentin Nalivaichenko, promises that
 the Ukrainian security agencies won't conduct
 actively aggressive operations on voting day.

Water and food supplies have been cut, in
several towns and cities in the South East.

In the opinion of Russia's military and foreign
 political leadership, “a colour revolution” is
 being implemented in Ukraine by the West.

“After the forceful removal from power of
Ukraine’s incumbent president with active
 participation by external forces, the country
 has actually slid into a civil war,” Russian
 Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, says.

 “We remember the attempts to implement the
 concept of “colour revolutions” in the former
USSR space.

 “In the recent past, such attempts were made
 in Central Asian countries and in Georgia. Now
 it’s Ukraine. The appearance of a new trouble
 spot has negatively affected general security,”
 he stresses.

“The West has preferred the customary policy of
 the containment of Russia, to the historic chance
 of building a Greater Europe,” believes Russian
 Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.

“The attempts to force on other peoples its own
 formulas of internal reform, which do not take
 into account their traditions & national features,
 to engage in the ‘export of democracy,’ have a
 destructive effect on international relations and
 result in the multiplication of hot spots on the
world map,” the minister stresses.

The turbulence in Ukraine is reminiscent of the
 violence and bloodshed Europe experienced
 in the 20th century, Lavrov tells a security
 conference in Moscow.

“The European continent, which brought two global
 military catastrophes in the last century, is not
 demonstrating an example to the world of peaceful
 development and broad cooperation,” he says,
 adding that the situation is not accidental, but is
 “a natural result of the developments over the
 past quarter of a century.”

“Our Western partners rejected a truly historic
 chance to build a greater Europe, in favour of
 borderlines and the habitual logic of expanding
 the geopolitical space under their control to
 the East,” Lavrov stresses. “This is, de facto,
 a continuation of the policy of 'containing'
Russia, only in a softer wrapping.”

The West ignored Russia’s calls for cooperation
 and would not pursuit the challenge of bringing
 together different integration projects in Eurasia.

Instead it was and is, forcing nations historically
close to Russia, to choose between the East and
the West.

“With Ukraine’s fragile political situation, this
 pressure was enough to trigger a massive
crisis of statehood,” Lavrov points out.

But Ukraine is just one example of the
destructive results that Western foreign
policies bring, Lavrov says.

“The operations to change regimes in sovereign
 states & foreign-orchestrated ‘colour revolutions’
 of different brands, produce obvious damage to
 international stability.

 “The attempts to impose one’s own designs for
 internal reforms on other peoples, which don’t
 take into account national characteristics, to
 ‘export democracy’, impacts destructively on
 international relations and multiplies the
 number of flashpoints on the world map,”
 he continues.

“Schemes based on advocating one’s exceptionalism,
 the use of double standards, a pursuit of unilateral
 geopolitical outcomes in crisis situations, are widely
 used, not only in Europe, but also in other regions,
 and this undermines crisis mediation efforts.”

The problems in Ukraine, Syria, Afghanistan and
 many other countries, can only be solved through
a collective effort, and Russia stands for joining
 forces in tackling issues.

 A collective effort resulted in recent advances
on the Iranian nuclear program and launched the
 dismantling of the Syrian chemical arsenal, he says.

Meanwhile unilateral attempts to resolve the
Arab-Palestinian conflict, proved to be deficient.

“When crisis management in all directions
 requires collective effort, one can hardly
 understand the reasoning of those, who
 take decisions on limiting cooperation
 with Russia over responding to common
 challenges and threats,” he says.

 “It’s doubtful that this will raise the efficiency
 of combating terrorism, preventing proliferation
 of weapons of mass destruction, responding
 to natural and man-made disasters or erecting
 barriers to extremism.”

Lavrov stresses that a polycentric system of
 global security, in which parties respect each
 other’s interests, cultural differences and the
 right to self-determination, is needed to build
 a just, safe and democratic world.

The foreign minister speaks at the international
 security conference in Moscow, which brought
 together officials, military officers and experts
from over 40 countries, including China, India,
Pakistan, Egypt, Iran and Belarus. It is the
third time Moscow has hosted the event.

‘Colour revolutions are like military operations’

Lavrov’s condemnation of colour revolutions as
 an instrument of hostile international politics,
 is repeated by the Russian military at the

 Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu says Ukraine's
 crisis is the latest example of such a revolution,
 and it follows a global trend for them to become
 more violent.

“After the forced ouster of the president with
 the help of foreign forces, [Ukraine] has now,
practically, slid into a civil war,” he says.

“A hotspot of tension has been artificially
 created in the heart of Europe. This has
 negatively affected global security.”

Shoigu adds that the scheme for fanning an
 internal conflict used in Ukraine is applicable
 to many countries, and points to Venezuela,
“where the legitimate government is being
opposed by a so-called democratic opposition
fuelled from abroad,” and Venezuela appears
to be a victim of this same approach.

But unlike the colour revolutions of the 1990s
and 2000s, which were relatively bloodless,
the latest generation of such operations
 increasingly resembles military invasions,
 the Russian minister stresses.

 Now colour revolutions lead to long-term
 destabilization, rather than to the simple
regime change that the forces triggering
 them, initially aim at.

Meanwhile the head of Russian General Staff
 Valery Gerasimov, accuses the US and its
 allies of initiating most of the regional
conflicts in recent history.

“The US cannot stomach the formation of new
 centres of power,” he states. “That is why it
 uses a wide arsenal, to ramp up regional
 tension, including unilateral sanctions, aid
 sent to West-allied forces, private military
companies & ultimately the national military.”

The general adds that the Russian military
will not walk away from the new challenges
that have
emerged in the Ukrainian crisis.

“Some Western countries have ramped up
anti-Russian rhetoric, and are building up
NATO troops in the Baltic, Poland and
 Romania, as well as a military presence
 of the alliance in the Baltic Sea, the
Mediterranean and the Black Sea,”
Gerasimov says.

“We cannot be indifferent to this, and will
have to take measures in response.”



The Obama administration has taken the over
 6,000-page report on the use of torture during
 the Bush years, laboriously researched by the
 Senate Intelligence Committee, and placed it
in the hands of the entity that carried out the
torture, the CIA, to 'redact', before publication.

 Many believe the torture report will never see
 the light of day, or will now be so edited, as to
it worthless.



President Putin says Russia respects the
 will of the Ukrainian people, but will keep
watch on what’s happening.

It was easier for Ukraine’s opposition to
reach agreement with President Viktor

 Yanukovych, who “was ready to agree
everything”, President Putin states.

 Putin explains that Ukraine’s Constitution
contains only four reasons for removing
 the incumbent president from power:
death, illness, impeachment and a
personal resignation request.

“None of those things actually happened
 in Ukraine,” Putin says.


                 US House Rejects Closing Gitmo Prison               
 The US House of Representatives has rejected
 by 247-177, a proposal to authorize President
 Barack Obama to close the prison in the US
 Base of Guantanamo, in eastern Cuba.

Since 2002, the White House has kept the
 prison in the naval base on Cuban territory
 against the will of both the Government
and people of Cuba.

The initiative, introduced by the Democrats as
 part of the national defense budget for 2015,
was intended to cancel the ban on a transfer
 of inmates to US mainland territory, and for
the closure of the prison by 2017.

In his state of the union address last January,
Obama said that 2014 should be the year for
 Congress to end restrictions to transfering
 inmates and the year for the final closure of
 the prison, which still harbors 154 prisoners.

In 2009, Obama signed an executive order
to close it in less than a year.

A recent Pentagon report admits that the prison
 spends one billion dollars a year, and the total
 amount will exceed five billion USD by late 2014.

There have been numerous reports about the
 use of cruel techniques to torture prisoners,
 like depriving them of sleep, keeping them
 naked in low temperatures and submitting
 them to exhausting interrogations.


Pentagon reportedly assigns 13k servicemen
 to first ever US-Jordanian-Israeli joint drill

Roughly 13,000 additional US troops are in the
 Middle East right now, reports RT news on its US
page, as the Pentagon begins joint military drills
 with soldiers in the neighboring countries of
Israel and Jordan.

The US-Israeli exercise, “Juniper Cobra,”
 which began earlier this week, involves around
 6,000 members of the US Eastern Command and
 1,000 airmen, involving the joint missile systems
used by the allies.

But on Saturday, over 6,000 US Marines moved
to Jordan to begin conducting drills there, as
 part of the annual Eager Lion program.

According to Israel’s DEBKAfile news agency,
 the activities in Israel & Jordan, are “the first
time the US has unified two large military
exercises,” and is reportedly being carried
out now, to counter an alleged advance of
Hezbollah troops.

“The two war games were planned as military
 maneuvers plain [and] simple until Wednesday,
 May 21,” the site reports, “when news came in
 of large Hezbollah military forces heading toward
 southern Syria to help Syria's army overcome
 the rebel forces fighting for over a week, to
 capture the Syrian Golan town of Quneitra,
 opposite the Israeli and Jordanian borders.”

“In the last few days, both Israel and Jordan
 have boosted their Syrian border deployments
 and placed them at battle stations.

Hezbollah’s intervention in the Golan battle
"may well result in the war game being
switched to combat operations for real,"
 DEBKA claims.

Earlier this week, the Jerusalem Post confirmed
 that Jordan's military was redeploying forces
along its border with Syria on murmurings of a
growing insurgency there — that report came
 straight after an announcement from Israel’s
Arutz Sheva news outlet that the US would
send a Patriot missile battery and F-16 fighters
to Jordan as part of Eager Lion, and keep them
there after the exercise is finished.

 On Tuesday, however, the Pentagon-affiliated Air
 Force Times said no such plans to leave weapons
 behind, were in place.

However, combined with the US Navy presence
in the Black Sea and the Mediterranean, more
 US service members than usual are now in the
 volatile region, amid civil wars and skirmishes
 that have dominated international politics in
 recent months.

According to the International Business Times,
 the chief defense attaché for the US Embassy
 in Tel Aviv, suggested recently that expanded
 cooperation between the US & its Middle East
 allies would greatly improve on those nations’
ability to secure the region, as tensions rise.

"If we were able to build a regional defense
capability in say, Jordan, that capability
could easily defend Israel, Jordan and even
Egypt, if you so desired, adding one more
layer to your multi-layered defense," the IB
Times quoted the attaché, John Shapland,
as saying.


Palestinian prisoners hold solidarity strike
 in Israeli jails

Over 5,000 Palestinian detainees in Israeli prisons
 have launched a hunger strike in solidarity with
 another group of Palestinian detainees who have
 been on hunger strike for nearly a month.

The Palestinian Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs said
 in its Wednesday statement that 5,200 prisoners
 would act in the solidarity strike on Thursday, in a
bid to pressure the Israeli regime to comply with
 the demands of the 100 Palestinian detainees,
 who have been on hunger strike for 28 days,
 to oppose their “administrative detention.”

Administrative detention is an imprisonment
 without trial or charge that allows Israel to gaol
 Palestinians for up to six months. The detention
 order can, however, be renewed for an indefinite
 period of time.

The statement by the Palestinian ministry warns
 that thousands of prisoners will announce their
 open hunger strike next week, and will make
 new demands, if the Israeli regime does not
comply with the demands of the group of 100
 administrative detainees, Ma’an News Agency
 reported on thursday.

According to the report, 40 more Palestinian
 detainees held in the Israeli Negev prison of
Ktziot began their open-ended hunger strike
Wednesday, joining the administrative

Over 120 Palestinian prisoners, including two
 jailed leaders, went on a one-day hunger strike
 on Wednesday to help administrative detainees
 who've been refusing meals for nearly a month.

Palestinian prisoner human rights organization
 Addameer estimates that about 183 Palestinians
 are now being held in administrative detention.

Over 800,000 Palestinians have been detained
 since 1967, with 5,224 currently being held in
 Israeli prisons, according to the Palestinian
 Liberation Organization (PLO).



Kiev troops reportedly shoot at deserting
conscripts as eastern military op escalates

Kiev forces have killed at least seven militiamen
 and injured dozens of people, including civilians,
 in clashes in the Lugansk Region.

 Some Kiev troop conscripts reportedly tried to
 desert and flee to the militia, and were shot
 at by their commander.

Both sides suffered losses during the battle near
 the village of Rubezhnoye, close to Lisichansk
city in the Lugansk region.

At least seven self-defense members were killed
and 16 others injured, according to the militia.
 A spokesperson for Kiev’s troops reported two
 fatalities and seven wounded among their ranks.

The shooting followed botched negotiations
 between the self-proclaimed People's Republic
 of Lugansk forces and pro-Kiev troops, Ostap
 Cherniy, a spokesman for the militias, said at
 a press conference on Thursday night.

“When the Ukrainian military with a column
 of armored vehicles approached Lisichansk,
 militias tried to negotiate with them,” Cherniy
 said. “Shooting erupted during negotiations.”

He added that local residents, including
 children, were among those who went to
 talk to the Kiev loyalists.

The civilians were trying to block military
 vehicles of the National Guard and asking
them “not to kill them,” he said.

There are claims that at least some of the
 casualties among Kiev loyalists were not
 due to the militias.

 Some 30 of the conscripts wanted to defect,
 Cherniy said. The militias fed the prisoners
and wanted to relocate them, but the other
 troops opened fire, he said, at the entire group.

“After they boarded a bus and drove to the
college, the military opened fire at the bus
 with a heavy machine gun,” said the self-
defense force representative.

A militia member told RIA Novosti that it was
 the commander of the unit preparing to desert
 who opened fire at his own men.

The information was confirmed by one of the
 defectors, who says he and fellow conscripts
decided to defect and say 'no', rather than
 follow an order to fire at militias and civilians.

“The commander ordered us to open fire
 indiscriminately ,” the soldier said during
 the same press conference, adding that
 locals “saved him” from the Kiev-
controlled soldiers.

A military doctor Gennady Moralishvili said that
 most of those injured in the clashes are currently
 in the local hospital and are civilians, not militia.

He added that the pro-Kiev National Guard set
the city's train station on fire and when the fire
 brigade arrived to put it out, they shot at them too.

Also damaged in clashes was a local bridge,
 although it was not immediately clear how it
 was taken down. Some reports say militias
 demolished it to prevent Kiev’s troops from
 transporting armored vehicles across river.

Others say that the loyalists destroyed it
during the clashes.

A local railway was damaged as well,
 disrupting traffic in the Lugansk Region.

By nightfall, the gunfight ceased around the city,
 local activist Sergey told RT by phone, adding
 that the militias have taken control over all
 checkpoints that came under fire in the day.

Medics in local hospitals were reporting large
 numbers of injured coming in during the day,
 the activist says.

“There are a lot of injured among the local
 population who came under fire on the
 outskirts of Lisichansk and Severodonetsk.
 Some are seriously wounded, who will be
 sent for surgery and treatment to [Lugansk].”

Militias said they have captured three BMP-2
armored personnel carriers from Kiev’s troops.

The escalation of violence in the Lugansk Region
 follows weeks of a focused assault by the Kiev
 troops on the neighboring Donetsk Region.

The confrontation there claimed dozens of lives
 both among the belligerents and local civilians,
but neither side managed to take control over
 the entire region.

Reports of a possible shooting between different
 pro-Kiev troops came from the Donetsk Region
on Thursday too, where at least 16 Ukrainian
 troops were killed and over 30 injured in a night
 attack on a checkpoint.

While some accounts said the battle near the
 town of Volnovakha was a night raid of the
 militias, there are numerous accounts showing
 that it could actually be a case of friendly fire,
 in which a unit of pro-Kiev militia hired by
 oligarch Igor Kolomoisky mistakenly attacked
 a facility manned by the Ukrainian military.

A soldier was killed and two others injured in
 the battle, the Ukrainian Defense Ministry says,
with the self-defense forces also speaking of
 several wounded on their side.

The Border Guard says that five of its troops
 were injured and one suffered concussion in
 a gunfight at Stanchino-Luganskoe, RIA-
Novosti reports.

Kiev is piling more troops into the south-east in
 anticipation of presidential elections on Sunday.

“According to our data, there’re currently around
 6,000 [Kiev troops in the Lugansk Region], and
 their number has increased in recent days,”
 Valery Bolotov, head of the self-proclaimed
 People’s Republic of Lugansk, says.

Lugansk & Donetsk regions refuse to recognize
 Kiev’s coup-imposed regime, holding referenda
 on May 11th, which gave landslide support for
their independence from Kiev.



... to deal with Venezuela!

John (don't laugh at me) Kerry might be
confusing his options, countries or maybe
his tables, as he warns Venezuelans that
the US is "running out of patience".

Could it have to do with the fact that
the day before, Venezuela said it will
give oil to Palestinians struggling
under the Israeli rightwing regime,
which is denying civilians fuel?



The coup-installed PM, says the "final
assault" on Eastern regions has begun
- and will "wipe out" the "terrorists" there.

This, despite the Rada instructing - through
their Memorandum - that ALL Kiev's army
and "special" forces immediately withdraw.



 China & Russia inked a long-awaited gas deal
 in Shanghai, ending decade-long natural gas
supply talks between the two.

The deal came one day after visiting Russian
 President Vladimir Putin said that "significant
 progress" had been made over the price, in
the lengthy talks.

The deal, worth 38 billion, uses the eastern
transit route from Siberia, directly to China.

Gazprom's CEO notes: “38 billion is just the start.
We've agreed with our Chinese partners that, as
 soon as we struck the deal on the eastern route,
we will start talks on the western route.

 As regards the western route, there is a fundamental
difference concerning the resource base: this is the
 same base, from which we are making gas supplies
 to Europe.”



German investigators of Nazi war crimes say they
have identified about 20 former guards from the
Majdanek death camp, who are still alive.

Federal prosecutor Kurt Schrimm says his special
Nazi War Crimes Office is preparing to recommend
that state prosecutors pursue charges against the
suspects in the next two weeks.

Lead investigator Thomas Will tells AP that the
probe of more former guards in Majdanek, which
was based on the outskirts of Lublin in occupied
Poland, is ongoing.

Altogether, about 1,000 possible suspects are
being investigated now.



Unidentified assailants attacked and burnt
down Oleh Tsariov's house. He's a member
 of the Ukrainian parliament and a candidate
in the snap presidential elections.

 The attack took place in the eastern city
of Dnipropetrovsk.

“My house in Dnipropetrovsk was burnt down
at night,” Tsariov wrote on his Facebook page.

 “Two buses with armed people arrived at 2am,
 showering the house with Molotov cocktails.
 The assailants acted confidently. They were
 filming the arson, probably to report later on
 their job."

“My wife and children left Dnipropetrovsk some
 time ago, and my mother did the same last week,
 and that's why no one was injured,” Tsariov adds.

“Yes, the house was burnt down,” he tells
ITAR-TASS.  “No one was injured in the fire.
We called the police.”

Tsariov was registered to run in Ukraine’s
presidential election, slated for May 25th,
but withdrew his candidacy from the race in
 late April, citing his protest over the current
 authorities’ policies in the southeastern
 regions of the country.

He had also received threats to himself
and his family.

The Ukrainian Prosecutor General, a neo-nazi
 member of Svoboda installed by the CIA coup,
had said previously that he wants the Party of
Regions deputy to be deprived of his immunity
as an MP.


Ukrainian MPs call for immediate
 troop withdrawal from country’s east

Ukrainian troops deployed in the country’s east
 should immediately return to their bases, the
 country’s parliament says in a memorandum.

 The freshly-adopted document also urges
constitutional reforms to decentralize
 Kiev’s central power.

With 226 votes required to pass the law,
 Ukraine's parliament has finally adopted
 its ‘Memorandum of Peace and Consent’,
 with 252 MPs voting in favour.

 The document calls "to restore law, order and
public safety in the state by stopping bloodshed
 and bringing to justice those responsible for the
 killings of civilians during mass protests; to stop
 the anti-terrorist operation in Ukraine’s southeast
 and return the soldiers involved in anti-terrorist
 operations to their permanent deployment places.”

The adopted document also urges immediate
 constitutional reform granting more autonomy
 to regions – a key demand of the protesters in
 the eastern regions of Donetsk and Lugansk.

As hopes for federalization passing a vote in the
post-coup Duma shrank, eastern regions created
self-defense forces, seizing government buildings.

 On May 11th referenda were held in Donetsk and
Lugansk regions and independence proclaimed.

The “constitutional status of the Ukrainian
language as the language of state” is confirmed.

The document adds that the state “must ensure
 the rights of minority languages.” The document
 does "grant status to the Russian language,"
 but stops short of giving it constitutional status.

The gift of amnesty for self-defense forces in the
 east is also dropped from the final draft of the
 memorandum. This was harshly criticized by the
 Communist Party, who abstained from the vote.

MPs from the nationalist neo-nazi Svoboda Party
 abstained from voting on Tuesday as well, saying
that they believe the reform will be ineffective.

Further, the reform will provide for Ukraine
dropping its non-aligned status, allowing it to
 join an interstate union through a referendum.

After the announcement, Russia says that if
Ukraine’s authorities plan to implement all of
 the reforms declared in the memorandum,
 then they will finally be responding to
Moscow's calls.

"First, we have to see how it looks on paper. If
 this is true then it's the development we have
 been talking about over the past months,” says
 Deputy Head of the Russian Foreign Ministry,
 Grigory Karasin, as quoted by RIA Novosti.

Today, the coup-installed PM, says the "final
assault" on the Eastern regions is to start
- and will "wipe out" the "terrorists" there.

For months Moscow has been urging Kiev
 to de-escalate tensions in the east, stop its
 military operations and hold an all-inclusive
 dialogue on constitutional reform in Ukraine.


Russia & China: ‘No to sanctions rhetoric,
or regime change in other countries’

Moscow and Beijing reject the imposition
of sanctions as political tools & condemn
 attempts at “encouraging and financing”
 regime change in other countries, in a
joint statement made during President
Putin’s official visit to China.

Having faced economic sanctions and threats
 of more to come from the West, Russia has now
 turned to the East, seeking to boost business
 ties in a friendlier environment.

An impressive package of deals on energy,
 business and infrastructure has already
 been signed in Shanghai.

More is yet to come, judging by the title of the
 joint statement by Beijing and Moscow, which
 promises “a new stage in full-scale partnership
 and strategic relations.”

Boosting mutual trade is not all there is to that
 “new stage,” as, following the meeting with Xi,
 the Russian president shares his expectations
 of closer cooperation between the countries
in international politics.

“We have common priorities on a global and
a regional scale,” Putin says. “We’ve agreed
 upon closer coordination of our foreign policy
steps, including those in the UN, BRICS and
APEC,” he adds.

Among attitudes Russia and China share, is
 their mutual dislike of economic restrictions
 imposed for political reasons.

“The parties stress the necessity to…
 reject unilateral sanctions rhetoric,”
 the joint statement reads.

Economic restrictions applied as a punishment
are no better than financial aid to forces that
seek “a change in the constitutional system
 of another country,” the Russian-Chinese
 statement says.

Moscow feels bitter about the role it believes
 the US played in the Ukrainian coup. Russia
 accuses Washington of investing $5 billion
regime change in Kiev.

A number of European politicians, meanwhile,
 admit that the EU might have been pressing
Ukraine too hard to sign the integration deal
which, according to German Vice-Chancellor
Sigmar Gabriel, possibly gave an “impression
in Ukraine that it had to decide between
Russia and the EU."

The ongoing political crisis in Ukraine can only
 be resolved peacefully, Putin and Xi Jinping
believe, and they call on political opponents in
Ukraine to switch from confrontation to dialogue.

"The sides urge all Ukrainian regions and public
 and political groups to enter into broad nation-
wide talks; develop jointly a concept of further
constitutional development of the country,
envisaging the full observation of universally
 recognized rights and the freedoms of people,"
 the statement reads.

Russia and China also call for the creation of
 new “universal rules of behavior in information
 space,” citing concerns at some communication
 technologies “running contrary to international
 stability and security, damaging countries’
 sovereignty and violating personal privacy.”

The ‘rules for internet’ comment comes as
 the US and China trade accusations over
 online espionage.

A grand jury in the US recently indicted
 five Chinese military - allegedly officers of
an elite cyber squad - with hacking into US
 networks and stealing sensitive business
information from US companies.

China dismisses all the US accusations and
has published proof that the US is actually
stealing data from China.



The Kiev government is responsible for
 the ongoing humanitarian crisis in eastern
 Ukraine, a political analyst says.

“We can blame the military operation launched
 by Kiev and this is not just a military operation.

"It hasn't just used Ukrainian army forces;
 it has also used militias, irregular troops,
 terrorist units, & simple violent hooligans,”
 says Manuel Ochsenreiter, chief editor of
Zuerst news magazine.

He holds the Kiev government and not Donetsk
 and Lugansk or even Moscow, accountable for
 the ongoing crisis.

The acting Kiev government has been staging
 military operations in the eastern and southern
 regions since mid-April in a bid to stop anti-coup

130 people have been killed so far, during
 clashes and operations by Ukrainian troops
 in the east and south, according to the UN.

“It’s a very cynical interpretation of the situation
 to say, well, you wanted to be independent, now
 starve, don’t find a doctor, don’t get medicine,”
 the analyst points out.



Ukraine’s government troops stationed outside
 the eastern city of Slavyansk in Donetsk region
 have targeted residential areas of the city.

Several houses were destroyed, 'though
 there have been no reports of fatalities yet.

The attacks spark anger among residents,
and anti-Kiev sentiments continue to rise.

"The ‘active phase’ of the Ukrainian security
forces’ operation continued in Slavyansk and
Kramatorsk during the night.

"The Molocharsky market was almost completely
 destroyed. Fighter jets were flying over the city
 all night long.

 "Ukrainian army  tanks attempted to enter the
 area from Izium city in the Kharkov region.
 However, we placed our military hardware in
 their way," a spokesperson for the local self-
defense headquarters said.

The acting Kiev government has been staging
 military attacks in the south-east since mid-April.



A political analyst says peace and unity
 can still be achieved in Ukraine if the interim
 authorities in Kiev stop their military attacks.

“If they stop the so-called anti-terrorist operation,
 if they stop bombing and bombarding the cities
 where Russian-speaking people live, I think that
peace is still achievable and Ukraine will stay as
one country,” Dmitry Babich, radio host of Voice
 of Russia, says.

The longer ongoing military operations continue,
 the less chance there will be, that Ukraine will
 stay a united country, he adds.

The commentator says the call by Russia's
 President Vladimir Putin on the interim regime
 in Kiev to immediately withdraw its troops from
 eastern Ukraine, is an attempt to de-escalate
 the crisis.

“I think that he [Putin] never escalated the crisis.
 From the very beginning Russia has been calling
 for an end of violence in the east of Ukraine,”
 Babich says.

He holds the Kiev government accountable for
the ongoing crisis in Ukraine as it sent troops to
 the southeast of the country against so-called
 terrorists, but they have failed to achieve any
 success - despite several weeks of fighting.

“Also, Putin has always called for dialogue,”
 the analyst points out.


U.S. foreign policy "shortsighted": Medvedev
Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev says
 that the overall policy of the United States to
his country and the international business
 community is "shortsighted" and moving
towards a new Cold War.

Washington has put ideology ahead of mutual
market benefits, which is a road leading to
 nowhere, Medvedev tells Bloomberg TV in an
 exclusive interview, citing the refusal of US
 and European companies to attend the St.
 Petersburg International Economic Forum
 due later this week, as evidence.

"That's too bad, that shortsighted position reminds
us of Soviet policy in a certain period. It looks like
 we just swapped positions," he says, adding that
 the current US approach ruins international trade.

He adds that Moscow is disappointed with the
 White House's handling of the Ukrainian crisis,
 which is dragging Russia-U.S. relations even
further toward a new Cold War.

"It's regrettable that all results we've reached are
 being effectively nullified by those (US President
 Barack Obama's) decisions," the Russian PM says.

He says that Obama is no longer capable of making
 "restrained, accurate and smart decisions," as he
 is guided by a desire to show the Congress that
"the United States does not fear Russians."

The prime minister notes that sanctions imposed
 by Washington and its allies have not affected
 the Russian economy so far, but urges those
 countries to take responsible measures.

He also dismisses allegations that Russia looks
 forward to integrating more Ukrainian territories,
 adding all parties should work for de-escalation
 of the Ukrainian conflict, or see a "civil war",
 in his words.

On Russia possibly intervening militarily,
he does not commit to whether Moscow
guarantees non-intervention in Ukrainian
 events, or not.

"We are not obliged to guarantee anyone anything
 because we never took those obligations in regard
 to this issue," Medvedev says. "We are proceeding
 with the fact that the main goal is not guaranteeing
 anyone anything, but calming the situation."

On Sunday, Ukraine held snap presidential
 elections, which eastern regions such as
and Lugansk, refuse to recognize.


Putin, Xi decide to hold military exercises in 2015

President Putin and his Chinese counterpart
 Xi Jinping, have decided to hold joint military
 exercises next year, dedicated to the 70th
 anniversary of the victory in World War II,
ITAR-TASS reports.

 The Chinese leader announces the decision
 during an opening ceremony of joint naval
drills off China’s coast.

The maneuvers in 2015 will be held “in
 commemoration of victory over German
 fascism and Japanese militarism in the
European and Asian theaters of WWII,”
 says a statement by the two leaders.



Russia's President Putin describes China
as "better than ever" and China,
as a friend.

China's leader greets him warmly,
addressing him as my "dear old friend."

Before he left, his press office released
a letter on Ukraine, stating that he:

“welcomes the first contacts between Kiev and
the supporters of federalization, on establishing
direct dialogue that must involve all interested

“Russia calls for an immediate end to punitive
 operations and the use of force, the withrawal
 of troops and the settlement of all problems
 solely by peaceful means,” the service added.

The Russian president also issued an order to
 return troops which participated in the recent
military exercises in Rostov-on-Don, Belgorod
 and Bryansk regions to their permanent bases.

“At the end of the planned spring military training ...
held at firing ranges in Rostov-on-Don, Belgorod
 and Bryansk regions, Russian President Vladimir
 Putin gave an order to Defense Minister Sergei
 Shoigu to bring back troops that participated in
 the war games to their permanent bases and
 continue the combat training at nearby firing
ranges,” the presidential press service said.


US to spend $317 million on UK
 intel hub upgrade - report

Washington has decided to upgrade RAF Croughton,
one of its many UK bases, already allegedly involved
in mass surveillance and drone strikes, to make it
the largest intel hub outside mainland US and a main
centre for its operations in Africa, The Independent
on Sunday reported.

Why call all the US bases in the UK, RAF bases?

Because if they called them USAF bases,
the UK's people would have to face their
position as conquered slaves.


Kiev army shells Kramatorsk, city ‘left
 without water’ – self-defense coordinator

Ukraine's army shelled the eastern city
of Kramatorsk as fierce clashes erupted
 between Kiev's military and self-defense
forces who stopped the APC convoy from
entering the city, local activists say.

A military convoy of six APCs approached
the city from the northwest and began
shelling it, a member of the self-defense
forces states.

“About 10 fighters wearing black uniforms
with no markings, as well as several people
in camouflage, were sitting on top of each
combat vehicle,” the self-defense force says.
they believe that National Guard and Right
Sector militants were among them.

Powerful explosions and intense shooting,
including shots from large-calibre guns,
could be heard even from the city centre,
say witnesses.

Several self-defense checkpoints have been
 reportedly attacked by Kiev's army, and a
factory in the suburbs was then set on fire.

Water and gas lines have also been shelled:
 all residents of Kramatorsk are without water,
self-defense coordinator Maksim Vlasov says.

 Some are now also without gas, local media
 report, citing Karmatorsk's deputy Mayor,
Andrey Bessonny.

A resident reports that the Kiev military used
 “grad multiple launch rockets or howitzers”
 to shell the city.

"I served in the army and during my service,
 I never heard such shots. They are getting
 louder and louder. A checkpoint is behind
the house and 1 or 2 factory workshops
 are burning. Fifteen people stay under my
window, with rifles & grenade launchers,"
 Kramatorsk resident Evgeny added.

Loud blasts and repeated heavy gunfire were
also heard in the eastern city of Slavyansk,
 not far from Kramatorsk, freelance journalist
 Graham Phillips reported for RT.

The fighting came after an ultimatum by
Donetsk self-defense forces, warning Kiev
 that if troops didn't withdraw from check-
points in the Donetsk region within 24
hours, they would be taken by force.


Kiev Nazi authorities are only obstacle to
 peace in Ukraine – ex-presidential candidate

The removal of Kiev’s coup-imposed authorities
 from power is the only way to restore peace &
 stability in Ukraine, the opposition leader and
ex-presidential candidate Oleg Tsarev, states.

Tsarev blames Igor Kolomoisky, the Kiev-appointed
 Dnepropetrovsk region governor and oligarch, for
 making “quite a large” contribution to the current
 violence taking place in Ukraine.

He says it's Kolomoisky who's responsible for
 recruiting nationalists into the National Guard
 and the special police units, which are now
waging war on the country's southeast.

Tsarev says he has information that “the
National Guard fighters, in civilian clothes,
 participated in events in Odessa” – where
 48+ anti-Kiev protestors died on May 2nd,
 after groups set fire to Trade Union House.

He also confirms the authenticity of the
 leaked phone call from May 9th, in which
 Kolomoisky said that he offered $1 million
 for Tsarev’s head.

“As I understand it, he didn’t want me to
 come to Lugansk and Donetsk, to take
part in organizing the referendum,” the
MP said.

Tsarev, a self-nominee for the presidential
 election, withdrew his candidacy, because
 he believes “the vote can’t be held when
 the army is on a reprisal raid against its
own people...and dozens die every day.”

With no candidate boasting support in both
 east and west Ukraine, any president elected
 on May 25th is just “a half-president,” he says.

The coup-imposed authorities in Kiev pushed
to hold the election “at any cost,” because
they realized that “their ratings are falling”
and that to act now, is their only chance
 to succeed, he explained.

The ex-presidential candidate calls Ukraine’s
 acting prime minister, Arseny Yatsenyuk, “a
 great imitator," for faking dialogue between
 the east and the west of the country.

“They gather their own representatives, who
 live in the southeast, and hold roundtables
with them,” Tsarev says, adding that he and
other actual leaders of protesters from the
 east, aren't invited to take part.

“They’re basically talking to themselves...
There’s no real dialogue,” he stresses.

The opposition leader reminds us that there
 are now howitzers shelling Slavyansk, with
 Kiev’s forces not providing any humanitarian
corridor for civilians to evacuate the city.

It’s “not realistic” to talk to the “murderers”
under such conditions, because a dialogue
 between Kiev and protestors in the southeast
is only possible, after a ceasefire is agreed.

Tsarev stresses that the only obstacles
to peace and stability in Ukraine, are
 the “current Nazi authorities of Ukraine,”
 which must be removed from power.

Tsarev says the issue is not so simple, when it
 comes to the position of Russia's authorities,
because they're responsible for Russia's fate –
including any economic sanctions which may
 be introduced against Russia.

But the opposition leader stresses that protestors
 in eastern Ukraine aren’t looking for independence
 from their compatriots in the country's west.

“They just don’t want to be in the same country
with the current authority,” he said.

Kiev's regime chose to send the army against
 citizens in the southeast, because its rule is
 “based on fear,” he added.

“But it’s impossible to defeat the people by
military means,” Tsarev stressed. “The army
doesn’t want to fight against the people. In
order to make the military obey orders, they
 have deployed Nazis there, who shoot at
  self-defense forces of the Donetsk People’s
Republic, and then fire at the soldiers who
 refuse to fight.”

“The number of casualties in the ranks of
the Ukrainian military is now 1,000 people.
 And sooner or later...I think sooner, rather
than later, the Kiev authorities will be held
 responsible for the war crimes against
 their own people,” he added.

Oleg Tsarev was previously a main figure in
 the Party of Regions – the party of Ukrainian
 President Yanukovich, who was ousted by a
 nationalist-powered coup back in February.

A few weeks later, he was registered as
 a presidential candidate. Several days
 later, he was brutally beaten by radicals
 from the Right Sector movement.

Tsarev backs creating an independent
 Federal Republic of Novorossia, following
the lead of Donetsk and Lugansk regions,
 which are revolting against the Kiev regime.



East Ukraine’s Kharkov region will hold a regional
 independence referendum following Donetsk and
 Lugansk, a member of the coordinating council of
the 'Southeast' movement, Yuri Apukhtin. said at
 a rally near the monument to Soviet leader Lenin
in Kharkov city's Freedom Square.

"Kharkov region will hold a referendum on
 independence following Donetsk and Lugansk."

Representatives from the  “Southeast”,
and “Borba” (Struggle) movements and
 the Ukrainian Communist Party, were at
 the rally in Freedom Square. Many of the
demonstrators carried Russian flags.



President Obama who has already bombed six countries
(Libya, Yemen, Somalia, Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Iraq)
and is now risking a possible escalation of the Ukraine
crisis he nurtured, into World War III against Russia",
has, in May, been awarded the 2014 'Ambassador
for Humanity Award' by the Shoah Foundation.



If the West carries on with its present policy of
sanctions on Russian citizens and corporations,
 Moscow will offer a "burnishing" response to it,
Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov says.

“I think the policy of sanctions is akin to rocking the
 boat in which you’re traveling,” he says. “Everything
 in this world takes place on the basis of mutuality.
 We’re not trying to copy just everything that comes
 our way, but counter-measures happen to be there,
 too, in such situations.”

“If Western sanctions continue, we’ll respond
to them, and our response will be felt rather
painfully in the capitals of target countries,”
 Ryabkov says, and adds that the authorities
 in Kiev should hurry to enter into a dialogue
 with those Ukrainian regions which have
 declared independence.

“I believe that the opinions of those people who
participated in properly organized, democratic
 referendums -- as the world has seen -- should
actually be respected. So the Kiev authorities
 ought to establish dialogue with the separating
 regions as soon as possible”, he says.

Ryabkov says that the OSCE may contribute
 to the dialogue as well, while the EU should
take more responsibility, terminate sanctions
 and conduct a policy that will influence Kiev.

“The authorities in Kiev should switch to a
 more rational political line, regarding the
 regions. We have the same attitude to US
policy”, Ryabkov stresses.



China's Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Cheng
 Guoping believes the sanctions against Russia
 are not helping a Ukrainian crisis settlement.

"Some members of the international community are
 introducing sanctions against Russia, which is not
 helping the settlement of the crisis in Ukraine," the
 diplomat tells reporters, adding that "China is ready
 to play a productive role in settling the Ukrainian
 issue politically."



Jim W. Dean, managing editor of Veteran’s Today,
says Israel is directly intervening in Syria, along
with several UN members, and that, by doing so,
and lying about it, they are losing world respect.

 "They already have engaged with several of their
 bombings. We found out through our sources that
Syria took out one of Israel’s stealth submarines
  they caught close to shore, where a helicopter-
launched a homing torpedo.

"And then Israel responded a couple of days later
 when they used a mini-nuclear weapon on the big
 arms depot outside of Damascus that had that huge
 explosion. And then they’ve had several other aerial
 attacks - so Israel has directly engaged.

"Everyone else is engaged in doing this – you
have all of the Western countries, the ones in
 NATO, they are all involved in training and
supporting these terrorists."

 "They are not arresting any of them that are
coming home; they are acting like there is
 nothing they can do about it."

"The international community - even the UN -
you have a lot of members of the UN that are
 actively engaged in state-sponsored terrorism
 toward a UN member, and I think the UN has
 basically disgraced itself, because they are
        acting like they just want to stay out of it."        

"America’s international reputation – what's left
 of it – is just being totally destroyed with this
 incident after incident of the double standard:
 that when we do it it’s OK, when Israel does it
 it’s OK; it’s only a bad thing when others do it."

"So, the young people of the world are growing
 up seeing an America that all they do is lie and
 provocate and spin."

"And we’re really not going to have a lot of friends
 in the world when this is over, and we can blame
 this current generation going back 15 years now
 --- of just terrible leadership."     

The managing editor of Veteran’s Today believes
that this tailspin will not be easily reversed now:

 "I really don’t, because the other malady that we
 suffer from is no one in a political position accepts
any responsibility, ever, for anything that goes
wrong. They don’t see anybody else doing it, so
they say 'why should I?' "

"And the people have some blame for this also
 - because they’re too lazy or too distracted to
 hold them responsible. There haven’t been
enough protests; everybody just says it is
 somebody else’s job to fix it."

"We’re going to pay a big price for that apathy
 because state-sponsored terrorism is going
 to spread and it’s going to be coming to a lot
 of people’s streets that never thought that
 they would ever see it in their town."



The Russian president blames the EU
 for its passive role over Moscow’s gas
dispute with Ukraine.

Vladimir Putin says in a special letter to
 European leaders, that the EU has not
presented any specific proposals to
 stop a possible halt in gas supplies.

"In early April, we came up with a proposal
 to hold immediate consultations with the
aim of elaborating coordinated actions to
stabilize the Ukrainian economy & ensure
 stable Russian gas deliveries and transit
 in compliance with contract terms," Putin
 underlines in his letter.

"Unfortunately, we have to state that we have
 not received any specific proposals from our
 partners on stabilizing the situation with the
 fulfillment of contractual obligations by the
 Ukrainian buyer and ensuring reliable gas
 transit," Putin adds.

He stresses that Russia’s decision to demand
 advance payment for natural gas deliveries to
 Ukraine, is a forced measure, and expresses
 his hope of coordination from now, with EU
 states, in a bid to normalize the situation.

Russia provides about half of Ukraine’s and
30% of Europe's total gas demand with key
 pipelines on Ukrainian territory.

The US and EU accuse Russia of destabilizing
 Ukraine and have slapped sanctions against
 Russian and pro-Russia figures.

Russia rejects the accusation, saying
 the pro-Russia protests in Ukraine began
 spontaneously against the new interim
government in Kiev.

Last month, Russian gas company, Gazprom,
 increased the price of gas for Ukraine from
 $268 to $485 per 1,000 cubic meters for the
 first quarter of 2014.

Writing to 18 European countries on April 10th,
 Putin warned that Gazprom could be forced to
 completely or partially cease natural gas
deliveries, if Kiev fails to pay its debt.


Uruguay to take 6 detainees from Guantanamo

Uruguayan President José Mujica says his
nation will accept 6 detainees from Gitmo.

 The Obama administration should move fast,
 the Washington Post quotes Mujica as saying.

“It can’t be too long,” he says, as he only has
 a “few months of government left.”

It means Uruguay will accept a group of Arabs
who have been cleared for release, but can’t
return to their nations, either because of war,
 fear of torture, or security concerns about
their home countries.

More importantly, the offer could free the last four
 Syrian detainees at Guantanamo Bay, a Palestinian
 and a Tunisian, the paper says.

 The White House has long pledged to close the
 12-year-old military "interrogation" facility.


Russia starts to fill North Crimea Canal
 to solve peninsula water problem

The problem of water supplies to Crimea has been
 partly solved, after water from Biyuk-Karasu River
 was directed to the North Crimea Canal.

 Water delivery started on May 12th, according to
 the Russian government. Also, at the beginning
 of May, the waters of Taigansky and Belogorsky
 reservoirs were diverted to Biyuk-Karasu.

Water supplies from the North Crimea Canal to
 Feodosiysky reservoir started on May 23rd.

 On April 26th, Ukraine shut North Crimea Canal,
 by which Crimea received 85% of the freshwater
 it needs.

Crimea’s First Deputy Prime Minister, Rustam
 Temirgaliev, said on May 6th that the region is
 now fully independent of Ukrainian freshwater.



Pro-Russia activists have retreated from
 government buildings in Mariupol, the
 second largest city in Donetsk region.

The retreat came after steelworkers began
patrolling the city with the police, after
 a rich factory owner gave the command.

Rinat Akhmetov, said to be Ukraine's richest man,
 reportedly ordered his workers to help Ukrainian
 government forces drive out anti-coup activists
 from Mariupol.

The activists had controlled government
buildings in Mariupol for several weeks.

The city, an important industrial and shipping
centre in Donetsk region, has seen heavy
fighting between Kiev forces and anti-coup

On May 9th, at least 20 protesters and an army
officer were killed and over two dozen injured
 in the Ukrainian army’s military operation there.


Volunteers battle Kiev's army
 on outskirts of Sloviansk

"Our immediate task is to hold the line
 and edge them away from the city," the
spokesperson for the people's volunteer
corps says.

On the outskirts of Sloviansk, Kiev-coup units
 are firing artillety shells at the positions of the
 volunteers, Ilya, a spokesperson for the people's
 volunteer corps in Sloviansk, tells media.

"At present, fighting is under way on approaches
 to Sloviansk near Andreyevka and Semyonovka
 villages, the town of Krasny Liman, and Mount

"They do not give a respite, to affect our morale,
 and a bombardment has been going on without
a break since 2pm Thursday. They're firing from
 mortars and large-caliber machine-guns. There
is also data, that they are bringing up heavy
military hardware," Ilya says.

"Our immediate task is to hold the line and
edge them away from the city," Ilya says.

Approaches to Sloviansk from the direction of
 Kramatorsk city are being blocked by Kiev's
 National Guard forces.

The volunteers' spokesperson says the road
 has been cut by armoured personnel carriers
 and checkpoints and all motorists are being
subjected to full body searches.

"It is difficult to ride into Sloviask for young people
 aged 20 to 36," the VCM spokesman says, adding
 that - regardless of age - all motorists are being
subjected to thorough body searches.

 "The military carry out body searches and rummage
 through personal belongings, even feminine ones,"
 the VCM spokesman says, adding that National
 Guard troopers ask questions in Ukrainian and
 "get irritated if people do not understand and
 ask them to repeat the questions".

People who arrive with photo or video cameras
 arouse the troopers' particular suspicion.

 "The troopers look through all the sequences
 and photo camera recordings. If any questions
 arise, they contact their headquarters and
 consult them," he adds.

 Motor vehicles are also inspected thoroughly:
 even spare wheels removed, and ripped open.

The Party of Regions has (again) walked out of
the Rada to protest the continuing army ops
in S. Eastern Ukraine.


Self-defense forces in Donetsk region have
 issued an ultimatum for coup military troops
to withdraw, "within 24 hours".

Deputy Commander of 'the People’s Militia of
 Donbass,' Sergey Zdrilyuk, says the troops
 will be forced out of Donetsk if they do not
 withdraw before the deadline, Russia’s Ria
 Novosti news agency reports.

“I give 24 hours for them to withdraw all troops,
 all forces,” Zdrilyuk said, adding, “If the armored
 vehicles aren't pulled back, the roadblocks of the
 so-called legitimate authorities are not removed,
 I will have enough power” to take them out of the



The Czech defense minister says his country does
not want to host foreign NATO troops on its soil, as
part of plans to beef up the alliance’s eastern wing
in light of the Ukraine crisis --- in contrast to some
other eastern European countries, like Poland.

Martin Stropinsky, the Czech defense minister, says
 his country is not in favor of any foreign troops being
 based in his country, even though they would only
 come at Prague’s invitation, Reuters reports.

“We know well how any permanent stationing (of
 troops) is still a problem. I belong to a generation
 that experienced the 80,000 Soviet troops based
 here during the period of ‘normalization’ and it is
 still a bit of a psychological problem,” Stropinsky
 tells Reuters in an interview.

He says that expanding training cooperation
 and other measures, won't be a problem.

“Raising the alliance’s presence on our territory
 in various modifications, yes. But when it comes
 to actual units, I am rather skeptical,” he says.

Stropinsky’s comments contrast with those by
NATO’s top military commander, US Air Force
 General, Philip Breedlove, who says that NATO
should permanently station troops in Eastern
Europe as a result of the increased tensions
between Russia and the West over Ukraine.

Poland has asked for a permanent NATO
 presence, and says all practical measures
 will be hammered out at the next NATO
 summit - in Wales - in September.



Son of US VP Joe Biden appointed to
 board of major Ukrainian gas company

Hunter Biden, the son of US Vice President, Joe
 Biden, is joining the board of directors of Burisma
 Holdings, Ukraine’s largest private gas producer.

The group has prospects in eastern Ukraine where
 civil war is threatened following the coup in Kiev.

Biden will advise on “transparency, corporate
 governance and responsibility, international
 expansion and other priorities” to “contribute
to the economy and benefit the people of

Joe Biden’s senior campaign adviser in 2004,
 financier Devon Archer, a business partner of
Hunter Biden’s, also joined the Bursima board
 claiming it's like ‘Exxon in the old days’.

Biden Jr.’s is a graduate of Yale Law School
and serves on the Chair’s Advisory Board for
the National Democratic Institute.

He's a director for the Center for National Policy
 and the US Global Leadership Coalition, which
 includes 400 American businesses, NGOs, and
senior national security & foreign policy experts.

Burisma Holdings was set up in 2002. Its licenses
 cover Ukraine’s three key hydrocarbon basins,
 including Dnieper-Donets (in eastern Ukraine),
 Carpathian (western) and Azov-Kuban (south).

The Biden board news is released at the same
time Gazprom moves Ukraine to a prepaid gas
 delivery regime and sends Naftogaz, Ukraine’s
 national gas company, a $1.66 billion bill that's
due on June 2nd, or Moscow will halt supplies.

Ukraine currently has about 9 billion cubic meters
 of gas in storage, but by the winter needs 18.5bcm.
 Kiev bought 27.7 billion cubic meters from Gazprom
 for which it still owes some $3.5 bn in 2013.

Gazprom is demanding Kiev pays $485 per 1,000
 cubic meters, raised from $268.50 after Moscow
 was forced to cancel several discounts agreed
 upon under Yanukovich's tenure as president.

Kiev rejects the new price as “politically motivated”
 and says it will only pay its debt, if Gazprom lowers
 the price back to $268.50, or else, it will open an
 arbitration case against the company in Stockholm.


‘Peed in public, behave like occupiers’:
 Latvian mayor complains about NATO sailors

Crewmembers of NATO warships deployed to
the Latvian port city of Ventspils are behaving
 like occupying forces, who don’t consider local
 laws apply to them, the mayor of the city says.

This discredits NATO in the eyes of Latvians,
 he adds.

“NATO sailors in Ventspils were behaving like pigs,
ignoring Latvian laws and municipal rules,” Aivars
 Lembergs told LETA news agency.

“Drunk, they urinated in public, right on shop
 windows, vomited, and drank in public, which
 is not allowed. They picked flowers from civic
 flowerbeds and gave them to prostitutes.”

Lembergs, a vocal critic of Latvia’s cooperation
 with NATO, adds that the NATO military personnel
 “behaved like occupiers, who do not recognize
 Latvia’s sovereignty.”

The mayor was commenting on an incident in
 Ventspils, in which NATO sailors clashed with
 locals at a night club last weekend.

One of the sailors, a 21-year-old Dutch national,
 sustained serious injuries and had to be taken
 to hospital with several broken face bones and

The mayor alleges that the Latvian participants
in the fight were simply protecting local women
from harassment by the visitors.

 He says that since NATO warships arrived in
 Ventspils, the number of misdemeanor reports
 in the city has skyrocketed. It is twice as large
 now as it was during the recent Day of the City
 celebration, when some 13,000 people
flocked into Ventspils.

The number of visiting NATO troops is about 90.


Kiev wants ban on communists - not fascists

The coup-appointed president and parliament
 speaker, Oleksander Turchinov, rows with a
senior lawmaker Petro Symonenko, as the
interim Ukrainian authorities come under
increasing pressure to stop their military
operations in the south-east.

“I want to state that the May 9th events in Mariupol
 confirm the fact that a fascist nationalist regime is
 being established in Ukraine,” says Symonenko,
of the Ukrainian communist party, asking:

 “which of you know what happened in Mariupol -
 that they shot and killed police who refused to
 carry out criminal orders to disperse peaceful

The Kiev government has been accused of
 killing unarmed peaceful civilians since the
 start of military operations in the region, in

Ukraine's acting President Turchinov is now
demanding a ban on, and the dissolution of,
 the Communist Party and urging the Justice
 Ministry to investigate its alleged support
 of "separatism" in the east.

Another communist member of parliament,
Alexander Golub, defended the Communist
party's actions and said the party was the
only force in Ukraine still uncontrolled by
 the fascist Kiev government.


Diplomacy must resolve the crisis in Ukraine,
 German Chancellor Angela Merkel says.

It cannot be settled by military means, she
German newspaper Westfalenpost.

 “All channels should remain open for negotiations.
 All representatives from the regions & Ukrainian
 society, who speak out against the use of force,
 should participate in this national dialogue,”
 she says.



Donetsk region sees Guard units lose vehicles:

 “Policemen put out of action a few armored vehicles
 of the Ukrainian armed forces, including one armored
 personnel carrier.” No-one has been injured or killed.

Police and so-called Ukrainian National Guard
 soldiers are involved in clashes near the city
of Kramatorsk, in the Donetsk Region, the self-
proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR)
 press service says.

Acting Verkhovna Rada speaker, Oleksandr
Turchynov, said that the Ukrainian military’s
"special operation" in the country’s east
will go on.


    Greek Opposition Leader Visits Russia 

  Alexis Tsipras, leader of the main opposition party
 of Greece, the left-wing Syriza party, had a two
 day visit to Moscow, which included several
meetings with senior politicians.

Tsipras, who's the European candidate to chair
 the European Commission, met with Valentina
 Matvienko, Chair of
Russia's Federation Council.

His agenda included meetings with Vladimir
Titov, deputy minister of Foreign Affairs;

 Aleksey Pushkov, chair of the Duma's Foreign
Affairs Committee, and Ivan Melnikov, vice-
president of the Communist Party and MP.

His meeting with minister of Foreign Affairs,
 Sergey Lavrov, was canceled, due to the
recent events in Ukraine.

On this issue, Tsipras said in Berlin that peace
 is now conditional on the elimination of those
 "fascist elements" in Ukraine's government.

 He describes as "absolutely unacceptable, the
existence of right-wing governments, with the
participation of Nazi elements, as in Ukraine".


Russia disappointed over additional EU sanctions

Moscow expresses disappointment over the EU’s
 newly imposed sanctions against Russia, stressing
 that it is not worthy of the European Union.

“Instead of trying to solve the situation through
de-escalation, disarmament of the Right Sector,
the improvement of dialogue between Kiev’s
 authorities and Ukrainian regions, EU colleagues
 are demonstrating a one-sided, one-dimensional
 policy, not worthy of the European Union,” Itar-
Tass quotes Deputy Foreign Minister, Sergey
 Ryabkov, as saying.

Further sanctions were introduced  after the
results of referenda, were announced
in the
Donetsk and Lugansk Regions, showing the

 majority of voters support self-rule, amid an
 intensified military operation by Kiev which
 resulted in several deaths.

EU foreign ministers have added 2 Crimean
 companies and 13 more people to the bloc's
 blacklist, EU diplomats stated.

Earlier, 48 Russians and Ukrainians were
 targeted by EU asset freezes and visa bans
 over Crimea joining Russia in March.


Russia backs choice of Ukraine's Donetsk,
 Lugansk regions, amid west's rejection, criticism
Xinhua reports that Russia says it respects the
choice of people in the Donetsk and Lugansk

 regions in Ukraine, who voted overwhelmingly
favor of independence, despite continuous
rejection and severe criticism from
Kiev and
some Western countries.

"We have taken note of the high voter turnout,
 despite attempts to derail the voting, and we
 condemn the force used, including that of
military hardware, against civilians, which led
to fatalities," the Kremlin press service stated.

It added that Russia had carefully monitored
 the preparation and course of the referenda.

Moscow calls now for direct dialogue between
the Kiev authorities and the two regions, saying
 "all mediation efforts, including by the OSCE,
 are welcome."

Sergei Naryshkin, speaker of Russia's State Duma,
 or the lower house of parliament, said the referenda
 "show their (local residents') wish to defend their
rights, essentially, their wish to be free."

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov,  blames
the US and the Ukraine regime for hampering the

 release of proposals on solving the Ukrainian
 crisis drafted by the Organization for Security
 and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE).

"Somebody in Washington and Kiev is against
 involvement of the (East Ukrainian) regions in
 the dialogue, and this is why the roadmap
 drawn up by the OSCE chair, is not being
 disclosed," he says.

"This is more evidence that Kiev has yet to
realize the need to talk to its own people,"
 he adds.

China calls for a solution to the Ukrainian
 crisis under a framework of law and order,
states Xinhua.

China has always followed the policy of non-
 interference in the internal affairs of others,
 says Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua
Chunying, at a press briefing after the two
 referenda held in two regions of eastern
 Ukraine, over their status.

Hua says China respects Ukraine's
and territorial integrity.

The referenda, however, drew criticism
 from Kiev and the West, which rejects
self-rule votes as illegal.

The US reiterates that it does not recognize
the referenda held in Donetsk and Lugansk
 in favor of independence.

"We do not recognize the illegal referendum that
 took place in portions of Donetsk and Lugansk,"
State Department spokes-
person, Jennifer
Psaki, told reporters.

A spokesperson of the British Foreign and
 Commonwealth Office, said the referenda
results were "regrettable."



Donetsk People's Republic has proclaimed itself a
 sovereign state and has asked Moscow to consider
its accession into Russia, the Republic’s council
has said.

“We, the people of Donetsk, based on the results
 of the May 11 referendum and the declaration of
sovereignty of the Donetsk People’s Republic,
 declare that from now on DPR is now a sovereign
 state,” Republic Co-Chair, Denis Pushilin said.

 “Given the will of the people of the Donetsk People's
 Republic, and in order to restore historical justice,
 we ask Russia to consider the issue of our republic’s
 accession into the Russian Federation,” he added.

President Putin is reported to be considering
his response.



Greece’s Supreme Court clears the extremist
neo-nazi Golden Dawn party to participate in
the upcoming European Parliament elections.

The top court gives it authorization, despite
the fact that the far-right extremist party
 is being prosecuted by Greek authorities
as a criminal organization.

Authorities are currently investigating nearly all
 Golden Dawn’s 18 lawmakers over serious crimes
 allegedly committed by the party during the past
 two years.

The party’s leader, Nikos Michaloliakos, and five
 of its lawmakers are in prison awaiting trial. The
 detained members are accused of involvement in
 criminal acts, including murder, arson & extortion.

The far-right party came under investigation after
 the murder of anti-Fascist left-wing musician,
 Pavlos Fyssas. on September 18th, 2013.

The killing triggered public outrage and a number
 of protests, forcing the Greek authorities to take
 action against the far-right extremist party.

After the murder of Fyssas, European officials and
 human rights groups said that the Greek authorities
 should have banned Golden Dawn even before the
 killing, with the European Commission on Human
 Rights (ECHR) describing Golden Dawn as a “neo-
Nazi and violent political party” that should be



Village near Slavyansk attacked with
 artillery fire, casualties reported.

The village of Andreevka near the Ukrainian city
of Slavyansk came under artillery fire very early
in the morning, the self-defense forces say.
Casualties are reported in the attack.

“There was an artillery attack. Houses were
 destroyed. Cars are on fire. There're casualties,
but the numbers aren’t known yet,” the
 representative said.

An assault on Slavyansk itself began around 5am
 local time (02:00 GMT) on Monday, by Kiev forces,
ITAR-TASS reported.

"The enemy began an artillery attack on Andreevka
 using heavy mortars and howitzers. Also we have
 data on the opposing side using helicopters for
 covering operations," a representative of the
self-defense HQ told Interfax.

Explosions were reported as "once a minute".

The attack was being conducted from the
TV tower on Karachun Mountain.

The National Guard was firing on security
checkpoints, but reports said mortar shells
were landing in local residents’ homes.

It now remains to be seen if the CIA is out of control
and backing the Kiev regime to commit warcrimes.

For a "mindblowing" news item on how the CIA
is operating under Obama, paste the link below.



Yanukovych urges Kiev authorities to
 withdraw troops from eastern Ukraine

Ukraine's coup-deposed President, Viktor
Yanukovych urges the Kiev authorities to
withdraw mercenaries and troops from
Donetsk, Luhansk, Odessa & other regions,
to stop violence & terror against their own
people, says a statement by Yanukovych.

Kiev's "murderous junta" has already killed over
300 peaceful citizens in Ukraine, Yanukovych says.

"The absolute majority of Donbas residents came
 to a referendum to cast their votes for any type of
 statehood, apart from the one that allows naming
 your own citizens terrorists and starting to kill them
 unlawfully, because the patience of the Ukrainian
 people has already run out," Yanukovych added.



Former US Defense Secretary Robert Gates says
 President Barack Obama’s options in Ukraine are
 limited, and his country has no “military option”.

Gates says Ukraine is "a tough spot" where
 Obama has "few tactical options" and "no
 real military option."

"In the short term, there's not a lot we can do,"
 Gates says, on CBS's "Face the Nation."

He says the Russian presence in Ukraine is a "done
 deal," adding that the Russian president will not now
wait to see he has lost all his supporters in Ukraine.

"I don't think [Russian President Vladimir Putin] will
 rest until there's a pro-Russian government in Kiev
 or a federated Ukraine where the eastern part of
 the country, for all practical purposes, looks to
 Russia," he states.

Tensions between Moscow and Washington have
 been escalating over the crisis in Ukraine. Yet,
 despite repeated threats, the US hasn't put any
 sanctions on, that would target sectors of the
 Russian economy.

The sanctions involve a US travel ban and a
 freeze on any assets a few individuals and
 entities hold in the United States.

The Obama administration has so far failed to
 nudge European leaders towards sanctions
against Russia’s economy because targeting
 Russia’s entire economy would most likely
 ricochet and harm US allies in Europe.



Russia says it respects the will of the people
 who voted in recent referendums in Ukraine’s
 Donetsk and Luhansk regions, and calls for the
 implementation of the results without violence.

“In Moscow, we respect the will of the people
 of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions and are
counting on practical implementation of the
 outcome of the referendum in a civilized
manner, without any repeat of violence and
 through dialogue,” said the Kremlin.

Activists say nearly 90% of voters in
Donetsk voted in favor
of regional
autonomy. The turnout was 75%.

 In the Luhansk region, the results and
the outcome were
about the same as
in Donetsk.


Death toll from Odessa tragedy goes up to 48

At present, about 60 people are still in hospital,
 and ten are "in a grave condition".


Referendum turnout in southeast
 Ukraine’s Lugansk topped 75%

Donetsk referendum organizers plan to
begin ‘civilized divorce’ with Kiev authorities

After the referendum in Ukraine’s Donetsk, its
organizers plan to convene a regional congress
 of deputies of all levels and launch a process of
“civilized divorce” with Kiev's authorities, Boris
Litvinov, coordinator of the central election
commission of the Donetsk People’s Republic
and a co-chair of the presidium of the Donetsk
 People’s Republic, told Vesti radio station.

The leaders of the Donetsk People’s Republic plan to
“begin talks on at least civilized divorce with Kiev’s
central authorities,” he said. “We want to be a party
 to the negotiating process, which rests on the will
 of the people, and to build relations with all states
 on the basis of equal rights.”

He said that the referendum was absolutely legal.
“People stood in 300-400 metre lines to cast
 their votes at polling stations,” Litvinov noted.
 “Even in Soviet times we never saw such queues.”


Citizens block APCs shooting
 their way through Mariupol

Civilians in Mariupol celebrated Victory Day on
Saturday, showing the same degree of heroism
their grandparents did during the Nazi invasion,
as they confronted with their bare hands, the
armored vehicles sent by Kiev. They even
captured one APC from the invaders.

'You will not pass' was the general message of
 brave Mariupol citizens when they, using their
 bare hands, tried to stop a Ukrainian armored
 personnel carrier by forming a human chain in
 front of it, as the APC was moving towards the
 city centre.

The video on YouTube, clearly shows their
 spontaneous move to protect the city from
 what they call “Kiev's junta”, through self-
sacrifice and by not being afraid of getting
squashed by the multi-ton machine.

That particular APC managed to get away
 through the crowd by firing warning shots.

But - in another, similar incident - citizens
 captured an armored vehicle. While half a
 dozen people blocked the vehicle's path, a
 few activists climbed on top of the machine
 trying to penetrate the hatch to stop Kiev’s
troops from advancing.

As they took over the APC, a shot was fired,
hitting the side of a nearby residential building.
 No one was injured during the takeover.

Once activists captured the vehicle, a massive
 industrial truck towed it to the main square of
 the city, as a trophy over what the locals call
 “Nazi” government forces.

 A small victory on the 69th Anniversary of the
 defeat of Nazi Germany.

Other scenes around the city also show hundreds of
 peaceful citizens surrounding heavy-armored units.
 Many unarmed citizens screamed “fascists” at the
 passing soldiers and APC column, as Kiev unleashed
 a bloody crackdown against its own people in the
 east of the country.

At least 20 “terrorists” – as the current Kiev
 authorities now label citizens of southeastern
 Ukraine – were killed, and four taken captive,
 said acting Interior Minister Arsen Avakov,
who is just one of the neo-fascist ministers
backed by the US State Department.

 According to Mariupol health officials, at least
 7 people were killed and 39 injured, including
 RT’s reporter, who is now in hospital.


US blames Russia as Kiev unleashes
 armored vehicles against civilians

Washington voiced its support for the bloody
 crackdown on anti-coup activists in Mariupol -
 blaming Russia for inciting the violence there -
as the OSCE condemned the force used by Kiev.

“I strongly condemn the violence, and call upon
 all parties to exercise maximum restraint and take
 immediate steps to de-escalate a situation which
 has caused the loss of many lives, and created a
 climate of fear & anxiety,” said the Chief Monitor
 of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine,
 Ambassador Ertugrul Apakan.

At the same time, US State Department spokesperson
 Jen Psaki, seemed to condemn the violence too, but
immediately blamed it all on “pro-Russia separatists.”

“Well, we condemn the outbreak of violence caused
 by pro-Russia separatists this morning in Mariupol,
 which has resulted in multiple deaths,” she said.


Kherson governor calls Hitler 'liberator'
addressing veterans on Victory Day

Addressing the public on Victory Day 2014, the
governor of Ukraine’s southern Kherson region
 trampled on the feelings of many veterans and
 desecrated the memory of all who perished in
 the war against fascist-led Germany, by calling
 Hitler a “liberator.”

Governor of Kherson region, Yuri Odarchenko,
 was booed by thousands - including WW2 veterans
- when he told the previously cheering crowd that
 the Soviet Union tried to enslave Ukraine, while
 Hitler tried to bring freedom.

“Those [Soviet] aggressors justified their capture
 not only by their desire to seize others' territory
and enslave the people, but they also put forward
 slogans about liberating nations and people that
 inhabit the lands which Hitler hoped to capture,”
Odarchenko told the crowd.

He went on to challenge history by saying that
 “if you read history books, we have a number of
 documentaries on this, then we see that he [Hitler]
 first of all put forward a slogan of liberating people
 from the communist yoke, and liberating people
from the tyrant Stalin,” Odarchenko said, sparking
 anger and outrage by the crowd.

As thousands yelled out “shame”, a young woman
 with a child approached the governor and stripped
 him of the microphone, before throwing it away.

Historians, citing data available from the Second
 Secretary of the Regional Committee of the
 Communist Party of Ukraine, shows that Nazi forces
 in Kherson region killed 72,130 citizens and shipped
 about 40,000 to Germany to work in labour camps,
 while Germans ruled a crucial port on the Black Sea
 and Dnieper River from August 21, 1941 to March 13,
 1944. Other historians place the figures at 105,000
 Soviet citizens killed and more than 60,000 sent to
 Germany as slave labour.

As far as Hitler's vision of liberty and justice for the
 people of Ukraine goes, there are those among the
 veterans who still remember what the Nazi reign in
 Kherson was about. Many witness accounts of the
 Nazi's actions were written down in history books.

“All those arrived were stripped naked and led to
 the trench,” eyewitness A. K. Mestkovsky recalled
 in V. Baraniuk’s historic study of Hitler’s ‘liberation’
 of Soviet ‘sub-humans’ in Kherson region. “The adult
 women and the elderly were stripped to their
underwear, placed by the trench on their knees,
 and shot by the machine guns.”

In the autumn of 1941, about 10,000 Jews were
 killed in the city of Kherson alone. It is estimated
 that at least 47,000 Red Army soldiers died while
 force-crossing the Dnieper as they tried to liberate
 the city from the Nazis.

The Kherson governor offended veterans on
their most important holiday, Russia's deputy
 Prime Minister, Dmitry Rogozin, says in his
 twitter post, calling him a “bastard.”



The Speaker of the State Duma lower house of
parliament, Sergei Naryshkin, believes that
genocide is taking place in Ukraine now.

Speaking at the international forum of Balkan
 Dialogue in Serbia’s capital, Belgrade, he offers
 condolences to the relatives of victims in the
May 2nd Odessa tragedy.

“We face a true genocide of Russian and Ukrainian
 peoples already in the 21st century,” he states.


Mariupol civilians shot down
by Right Sector Guards

As unarmed civilians attempted to celebrate
Victory Day, they were shot at by Guards.

"About 1,500 people left the parade and went to
 the local interior ministry HQ. People in camouflage
 confronted them, shooting into the air, using lethal
 weapons," a witness tells Interfax.

The witness states that another group of city
 residents set a car tire on fire next to the city
 council building.

Earlier, self-defense forces in Mariupol reported
 that armed people had tried to seize the local
 city department of the Interior Ministry.

“Camouflaged people are storming the building of
 the city’s interior ministry department. A bus with
 soldiers has driven up – they are from a military unit
 located in the vicinity of Mariupol. Policemen who
 refuse to obey Kiev regime’s orders are now being
 detained,” a representative of the self-defense
 forces says.

The self-defense forces also say that "city
 department police refused to obey Kiev’s
 orders and guard the city council building,
 seized a day earlier by security services.

"As a result, the Kiev authorities decided to storm
  the city's Interior Ministry department building.
Police shot back, and the building is surrounded.”

Self-defense forces say government forces used
 heavy weaponry while storming the local branch
of the Interior Ministry.

 “Armored vehicles approached the building and
 opened fire with heavy weapons. The building is
 old and has thick walls, so you can’t penetrate
 it with machine gun fire,” a representative of
the self-defense forces tells Interfax.

“On the central street of the city, I saw tanks and
 armored vehicles with Ukrainian flags at around
 11.40 am [local time]. Then, the city residents
 started to gather near the executive committee
 building. Then some of the protesters tried to
 go to the district department of the interior, but
 it seemed that the Kiev regime military was
 beginning to shoot at those who attempted to
 approach. I don’t know if they were shooting to
 kill, but at their legs – that’s for sure,” local
resident Grigory tells RT news.

City streets are now on lockdown for transport
 and pedestrians, as armored vehicles are
 approaching from the airport outside the city.

"Yesterday we were told that some provocations
 were being prepared, but people didn't believe it,
 so a Victory Day parade was scheduled for 9am
 today," a local resident, who identified herself
as Victoria, states.

'This was an execution attempt against police
 who did not quit.'

Kiev’s National Guard used grenade launchers
 against police who earlier refused to shoot at
 unarmed civilians, as the coup authorities
 ordered them to do, a representative of the
 anti-fascist committee Pyotr Komissarov says.

“Earlier, local police refused to shoot at civilians.
 Kiev called them traitors. Today, they tried to
execute all police officers that didn’t ask to be
 dismissed. Heavy military equipment was pulled
 into the city. They used small arms and rocket
 grenades, tanks fired cannons at the police HQ
building. The National Guard went to war with
the local police”

The attackers were “volunteers, mercenaries”
from central and western parts of the country,
he says.

“They wage war for money so they are capable
 of doing anything. We saw these people, talked
 to them.”

“They shot at civilians” he stresses. “I saw several
 people killed,” Komissarov says, adding that among
 the killed, were police officers.

 Right Sector representatives were identified
 among the dead as well, he adds.

The nationalists captured three police officers,
 he says. “We saw them tied up and sitting in
 the courtyard of the police HQ”, but later the
 people freed them.

Neo-fascist Ukrainian MP Oleg Lyashko claims
that the forces loyal to the Kiev coup-installed
regime have orders “not to take anyone alive.”

 He writes in his Facebook account, that “the
 perimeter around the Interior Ministry department
 building in Mariupol is completely blocked by the
 armed forces. Terrorists (sic) are barricaded inside
 and are now returning fire. An order has been
issued not to take anyone alive.”



"It's our country which chased the Nazis to their den,
 and achieved their full and final defeat, won at the
 cost of millions of victims and terrible ordeals.

"We will always guard this sacred, unfading truth,
and we will not allow the heroes to be betrayed
or forgotten – everyone who saved peace on the
 planet, not sparing their own selves," Putin said.



Russia's Ambassador to the European Union,
 Vladimir Chizhov, says the Ukrainian crisis is a
 consequence of an "unskillful and unprofessional"
 policy to bring Kiev closer to the EU and the USA.

"The present Kiev regime is the result of the crisis
 which initially emerged due to the unskillful and
 unprofessional political line of the European Union
 and the United States," Chizhov tells reporters.

 "The EU spoke so much and so often about its
 Eastern Partnership policy's not being aimed
against Russia that this alone put it in doubt.
"Today, it is pretty certain that the Eastern
 Partnership is a rather artificial geopolitical
project aimed at attracting target countries
 to the European Union, but without giving
 them the slightest hope of membership,"
 the ambassador notes.

He recalls that, whereas the level of support for
 this policy was high in such countries as Georgia
 after the events of 2008, it raised many more
 questions (including from government officials)
  in other states, for example in Armenia.

"Azerbaijan said at the very beginning that it was
 not interested, and the EU has kept Belarus at a
 certain distance as it is. As for Moldova, its pro-
European coalition is making all efforts towards
 implementing this program, but this raises a
 legitimate issue of Transdniestria, and now -
also, of Gagauzia," Chizhov continues.

The envoy says the EU should thoroughly analyze
 the real situation and all aspects, in the countries
 with which they work.

"If they do not have enough expertise, let them
 ask knowledgeable persons. We'll help them.
 I send them such a signal regularly," he notes.

"The sooner the EU turns over the page of its
worries for the fate of its Ukrainian project -
 which has nothing to do with the Ukrainian
 people - the better it will be for the European
 Union," he underlines.

"If all the energy our European partners spend
 on developing various scenarios of sanctions
and their publicity were used for good deeds,
namely the settlement of the Ukrainian crisis
in line with the obligations undertaken by the
EU as a signatory of the Geneva communique,
it will be more correct and sensible," he says.

Commenting on the initiative to convene the
 Geneva-2 conference, Chizhov notes that it
will only make sense if representatives of
 the Ukrainian regions participate in it.

"The German foreign minister suggests preliminary
 round table discussions involving all the political
forces of Ukraine. We support it. Everything bumps
into Kiev's position," the Russian envoy says.

 "The attempts to present Russia as representative
 of Ukraine's southeast is utter nonsense. Refusals
 by Donetsk and Luhansk to postpone the date of
 the referendum, only confirm the untenability of
this approach."

"In the old group (Russia, the European Union, the
 USA and Ukraine), we can only say that Kiev failed
 to meet its commitments within the framework of
 the first Geneva meeting, but we're saying it anyway.

 "In the long run, it is not Russia that should comply
 with the Geneva communique's provision on turning
 in weapons, including by Right Sector militants, and
 freeing administrative buildings in Kiev, and the
need to stop violence," Chizhov says.

As for that western journalists' favorite question:
 "How close is Ukraine to EU membership now",
 Chizhov expresses confidence that this process
 has been negative.

 "Ukraine is only moving further away from this
 prospect," he says.



The French lawyer and politician Roland Dumas
 (Foreign Minister 1984 - 1986 and 1988 - 1993)
made a cable television appearance last year --
on the French channel La Chaîne Parlementaire
-- where he said the following:

 "I’m going to tell you something. I was in England
 two years before the violence in Syria on other
 business. I met with top British officials, who
 confessed to me that they were preparing
 something in Syria. This was in Britain, not
in America.

 Britain was organizing an invasion of rebels
 into Syria. They even asked me, although I
was no longer minister for foreign affairs, if
I would like to participate.

 Naturally, I refused, I said I’m French, that
doesn’t interest me". Dumas went on to
say "that this operation goes way back.
It was prepared, preconceived and
planned, in the region.

 It is important to know that this Syrian regime
 has a very anti-Israeli stance".

 If Dumas' statement bears any relation to reality
it means that Gordon Brown's government was
 ultimately behind any master-plan to remove the
 Assad regime.

 That would make Gordon Brown Tony Blair's
 successor in more
ways than one  -- both are,
after all, members of the parliamentary group
'Labour Friends of Israel'.



Iran calls for the destruction of nuclear weapons
 across the world, and warns about banned arms
falling into terrorists’ hands.

"Iran firmly believes that every effort should be made
 in accordance with international law to rid the world
 of the menace of these inhuman weapons,” says
 Iran’s Deputy Ambassador to the United Nations.
Dehqani also says efforts should be made “to
insure that such weapons do not fall into the
hands of terrorists and non-state actors."

The Iranian official, adds, however, "Efforts to
 prevent the potential threat of weapons of mass
 destruction falling into the hands of terrorists
 should not distract our attention from the real
threat, namely the continued existence of
 thousands of nuclear weapons in stockpiles
 of nuclear weapons states."

The Iranian delegation to the UN review on non-
proliferation also releases a statement high-
lighting the “unsafeguarded nuclear activities”
of the Israeli regime in the Middle East.

Tel Aviv rejects calls to join the Nuclear
 Non-proliferation Treaty (NPT) and does
not allow international inspectors to
 observe its nuclear program.

“The Preparatory Committee should urge Israel
 to accede, immediately and unconditionally, to
 the Treaty as a non-nuclear-weapon party, to
 place all its nuclear activities under the IAEA
 comprehensive safeguards,” the statement adds.

The Israeli regime is widely believed to be the sole
 possessor of a nuclear arsenal in the Middle East
 with up to 400 undeclared nuclear warheads.


Putin oversees planned military
 drills on countering nuclear strike

President Vladimir Putin has overseen military drills
 on countering a nuclear strike. The planned drills
 came just ahead of the May the 9th celebrations
to the Red Army's victory in World War 2.

"We are carrying out tests on the readiness of
 Russia's armed forces. This was announced
November. The exercises will involve all
branches of the armed forces across the
 country," Putin told reporters.

Modern challenges and threats to the country’s
 national security demand that the army and the
fleet are maintained in readiness for quick and
 effective retaliation in any conditions, the
 Russian Defense Minister and army general,
 Sergey Shoigu, told Putin in a new report.

During the drills, it was demonstrated how the
missile corps, artillery, aviation and anti-aircraft
defenses can be used – for instance, to destroy
 troops on the ground or to counter mass missile,
 aviation or nuclear strikes by an enemy.

Plus, it was shown how to inflict a launch-
through-attack strike with nuclear missiles.

The training exercises, including ground troops
 and artillery as well as the air force, are being
held during
a summit of the heads of state of a
security bloc made
up of former Soviet states.

Led by President Vladimir Putin, the Russian
 aerospace defense troops have successfully
 overridden a massive nuclear missile strike, an
 official representative of the Russian Defense
 Ministry said.

"At the Priozersk training area (Kazakhstan), a
 successful interception of a ballistic target by
a short-range countermissile was carried out.

"A mass rocket nuclear strike was repelled by a
 ballistic missile defense unit of air and missile
 defense troops," said the representative.

The representative also gave more detailed news,
in that the combat crews of Armies of Aerospace
 Defense, discovered and tracked the ballistic
 missiles, targeting them by launching short-
range Amur complex interception missiles.

“The anti-missile system successfully struck
 the target, which imitated a ballistic rocket,”
 the representative added.

The strategic weapon carrier Tu-95MC conducted
 launches of six cruise missiles aimed at targets
 on the ground in the aviation training area of the
 Western military district, as part of the drills.

The simulated targets were key facilities of the
military infrastructure of a hypothetical enemy.

All the targets were hit as planned, Russia’s
 Defense Ministry confirmed.

The presidents of Belarus, Armenia, Kyrgyzstan
 and Tajikistan, observed the drills from the
Russian National Defense Command Centre.

Strategic bomber aircraft and underwater missile
 carriers of the Pacific and Northern fleets were
 involved in the drills. Also, strategic land-based
 mobile missile systems, as well as the missile
 corps of the Southern and Central military
districts, participated in the tests.


NATO ‘ignores facts’ by saying Russia did not
 withdraw troops from Ukrainian border

NATO’s Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen
 “ignores reality” by saying he has "seen no signs"
 Russia is withdrawing troops from Ukraine’s border,
 Moscow says.

 “For those with a blind eye we suggest they follow
 President Putin’s statement of May 7,” the Russian
 Foreign Ministry says.

 Putin says Russia has pulled back troops from
the Ukrainian border and that this fact can
checked using modern
reconnaissance means.


United Ukraine future impossible
 without consensus in society

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov urges
 the US and Europe “not to tear Ukraine apart
 between the East and the West.”

"The way to disentangle Ukraine's crisis has
 been understood by politicians and diplomats
 for a long time," he says.

 First and foremost, Ukrainian government troops
 should be brought back to their permanent bases
 to lift the tension, because no agreements can be
 reached during combat,” explains the diplomat,
 Anatoly Adamishin.

"A second step to de-escalate the current situation
  should be the disarmament of illegal armed units.
 This was fixed in the Geneva accord on April 17th.

"But Kiev decided that the demand to lay down arms
 referred just to militiamen in south-eastern Ukraine,
 and not to the Right Sector gunmen --- who are now
being integrated into national guard units or into the
the diplomat says.

“A third step to political settlement is an assembly
 of local officials from all Ukrainian regions, at which
 they should agree on a future constitutional system
 for their homeland. Without its citizens' agreement,
no one will be able to agree on a Ukrainian national
consensus,” Adamishin believes.

“Talks were implimented to end the civil war in
 Tajikistan in the 1990s. The war there ended when
the representatives of state authorities, opposition
 and even field commanders managed to have talks.
 Then this scheme became effective."

 "At present, in Ukraine, it will hardly have an effect
 --- because the United States is prompting Kiev to
take the south-eastern regions under control."

 "If Washington had urged Kiev to stop the
operation in Donetsk, it would have been
stopped, because the Kiev authorities are
 not independent,” he notes.

“The meeting of foreign ministers of the Council
 of Europe states in Vienna, showed that neither
Russia nor the EU wants a war in Ukraine, and
both are seeking to overcome the crisis in a
 political way."

 "The US is actually commanding the situation,
 as it seeks to provoke Moscow into a military
 intervention, to squeeze Russia in its grip, and
 to put Europe under US economic control."

"The tragedy in Odessa, where 46 people died in
 the House of Trade Unions set on fire on May 2nd
 has pursued exactly this goal,” the expert says."

"Under these conditions, a 2nd round of Geneva
 talks looks useless. It will vanish into the air, as
 the first Geneva talks did, where all the correct
agreements were reached, but not one of them
was fulfilled,” Adamishin notes.

"When supporters of Ukraine's integration into
the EU were fighting against Yanukovych, the
 western Ukrainian city of Lviv proclaimed its
 independence. Washington and Brussels
hailed this event."

 "Now, they call residents in south-eastern Ukraine
  separatists, after they declared people’s republics
 in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions."

 The West, the diplomat notes, urged Yanukovych
 not to use force on opponents, yet now the West
 approves the Kiev authorities’ military operations
 against their own people.”

“Such ‘games’ may result in a split of the country
 between the East and West, provoke a full-scale
 civil war, and bring Ukraine to complete collapse."

 "If EU states do not want a war in central Europe,
 they shouldn't act ambiguously, as they do now,"
 the Russian extraordinary and plenipotentiary
 ambassador adds.



China's Xinhua says Burkhalter, who is also
 president of Switzerland, said there are, so
 far, no plans to hold a Geneva 2 meeting to
 simply assess the "progress" of 'Geneva 1'.

But he did say the OSCE is considering a four-
point action plan for the four signatories to the
 Geneva agreements,  "to know which items are
 points of consent, and which might need some
adjustments for their soonest implementation."

The OSCE is also offering to set up a fund to finance
 the implementation of a proposed disarmament plan
 in Ukraine, the official said, adding that the bloc is to
 send up to 1,000 observers to the presidential polls.


Ukrainian Army Escalates Battles in Slavyansk
Militiamen, says Interfax, say that the self-defense
 forces have strongly resisted  the army's efforts to
 occupy the TV tower in Slavyansk, which has been
 retaken, despite the army using mortar fire on them. 

A representative of the rebels' general staff says
the fighting is continuing, and that the Army has
 blocked peaceful civilians from leaving --- even
 families with children and elderly people.

The source adds that regular forces are attacking
 the militias' positions with all kinds of armaments,
 including mortars, bazookas and even Grad multi-
missile systems.

The nearby town of Andreevka was attacked
 using mortars and heavy weapons, and several
 people were injured, says Russian television.

At midday, there was a tense calm in downtown
 Slavyansk after the firing, explosions and flames
 made by rockets launched at the checkpoints of
 the people's self-defense brigades stopped, ITAR
-TASS reports.

People were burying their dead as a result of the
 military operation launched by the Ukrainian Army
 on Monday, when least ten people were killed and
 25 were injured.

Since mid April, the Army has carried out a large-
scale military crusade in eastern Ukraine, against
 the cities of Donetsk, Kramatorsk and Slavyansk,
 supported by artillery, helicopters and fighter jets.


President Vladimir Putin says that Russia has
 withdrawn its troops from the Ukrainian border.

“We've been told that our troops on the Ukrainian
 border are a concern – we have withdrawn them.
 They are now not on Ukrainian territory, but at
 locations where they are conducting regular
drills at ranges,” he said.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel suggested
earlier, holding "roundtable discussions," a
proposal Moscow fully supports, Putin added.

Moscow and the OSCE agree substantially on the
 approach to resolving the situation in Ukraine,
Putin said, and negotiations make this clear.

“Moscow is interested in a swift resolution of the
 crisis in Ukraine, taking into consideration the
 interests of all people of the country,” he said.

In the coming hours, OSCE will offer a “roadmap”
 on Ukraine, Burkhalter says.

“Our offer now is the following: literally in the next
 few hours we would like to offer a roadmap for the
 four signatories of the Geneva agreements,"
Burkhalter says, adding that the roadmap lays out
 “concrete steps” to resolve the Ukrainian crisis.

There are four major points, he says: "These are
 a ceasefire, de-escalation of tensions, dialogue
 and elections." Burkhalter adds that this road-
map was discussed earlier, in Vienna.

This, he says, is a “more pragmatic” alternative
 to any 'Geneva-2' peace talks on Ukraine, which,
 Burkhalter says, are, for now, not planned to be held.

Burkhalter also believes that dialogue between
 Kiev and southeast Ukraine is a “realistic prospect.”

“As for the probability of a national dialogue in
 Ukraine, I think it's quite a realistic prospect,
because only Ukrainian people need to be
involved in determining their own destiny.”

On behalf of the OSCE, Burkhalter says that the
 organization is ready to take responsibility for
coordinating the “roadmap” and negotiations
 with the US and EU. will be taking place soon.


Kiev retakes Mariupol city hall
 after overnight clashes - then
anti-Kiev forces retake it...

Anti-government protesters vacated Mariupol
city hall after a night of clashes over check=
points with Kiev's troops.

The city hall was taken by pro-government
forces, local media reported.

 Barricades were dismantled by workers, as a
crowd of some 50 people gathered shouting
“traitors” at them, 0609 news website reported.

By the next afternoon, the city was reported
as being back in the control of pro-federalists.

“It looks like the assault's started,” Mikhail Krutko
 from the self-defense headquarters told Interfax
 news agency, adding, there was no information
 about injuries or victims.

 "We've just now started getting messages about
 a massive attack on our checkpoints, located in
 the western part of the city.”

A local activist named Dmitry confirmed -
  “intensive shooting can be heard.”

“We have three of our people killed, there was
 an attack on one of our roadblocks," an activist
 in Mariupol told RT news.

We have information that Right Sector radicals
have arrived in the city and are now getting
dressed into police uniforms to blend in.”

There was also shooting near Mariupol airport.

“People in black and camouflage shot at several
 vehicles,” the source said, adding that there is
no information about casualties.

RIA Novosti cited its source from Donetsk:

 “Unknown men attacked several checkpoints.
There was shooting in the area close to a military
 base near the airport,” the source said, adding
 that the shooting had calmed down for now and
that only single shots could be heard.

The source said that “the assault” did not look
 like “active actions by the regular army” as the
 men wore uniforms without matching camouflage.

In Slavyansk, civilians trying to leave are now
shot. A young woman and her baby were
killed as their car approached an army
point, locals report.

Local pro-federalisation supporters say army
units have placed multiple rocket launchers
and field guns aimed at the city, and that -
when the army attacks with these:

"People will not live well, and they will
not live long".



Russia's leaders promise to defeat today's
rise of fascism now spreading in Ukraine.

"What is happening isn't just marches with slogans,
 but a ‘living’ manifestation of fascism," the Russian
 minister of foreign affairs says.

The tragedy breaking out in the Ukrainian Black Sea
 port city of Odessa is sheer fascism and Russia will
 not permit a revival of this ideology and sweep facts
 under the carpet, Russian Foreign Minister, Sergei
 Lavrov, said at a flower-laying ceremony.

“For many years Europe has been turning a blind
 eye to the fact that this ideology is gaining new
 supporters, and how former Waffen SS legionaries
- found as war criminals at the Nuremberg Trials -
are staging marches,” the minister said.

Lavrov noted that current events in Ukraine “are
 already not just marches with slogans glorifying
 Nazi criminals, but a ‘live’ manifestation of fascism.”

 “What happened in the city of Odessa on May 2nd
 is a sheer act of fascism and we will not permit a
 sweeping of facts under the carpet, as the ruling
 coalition tries to do, concealing the investigation
 from the public.”

“We will seek the truth, for all evidence produced
 by eyewitnesses, shows that the current Kiev
authorities are consciously hushing up the scale
of the tragedy, and we will seek for the truth to
be investigated and made public,” the Russian
 foreign minister pledged.

“We will not permit fascism to revive in Europe,
 and we will not allow it to revive in Russia,
either” Lavrov added.



 Refusing dialogue with Russia on events in Ukraine
 would be "an incredible mistake", Germany’s Foreign
 Minister, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, says.

“The situation in eastern Ukraine, deteriorating in
the last few days, and bloody clashes in Odessa,
show that we are only a few steps away from an
open military confrontation,” Steinmeier says.

“Conflict around Ukraine has taken an acute form
 which seemed impossible in Europe before. The
 danger of a new division of Europe is still real.
 We should seek all possible ways to prevent an
 open civil war in Ukraine.”

Steinmeier notes a key role for the Organisation
for Security & Co-operation in Europe in settling
the conflict.

 “None of the EU countries want military intervention
 in Ukraine. The German government shares the same
 opinion,” he says.

Steinmeier says the US, Russia, the EU and Ukraine
should “sit at the negotiating table in Geneva again”.

“We should talk to each other,” he says. “Refusing to
 hold a dialogue while tension in Ukraine is growing
 would be an incredible mistake.”

It's also a mistake, he says,  that at the last four-
party meeting in Geneva in April, there were no
 mechanisms to implement decisions reached
 between Ukraine, Russia, the EU and the US.

“That is why we need a follow-up conference,”
 Steinmeier says.


New talks on Ukraine doubtful unless
 opposition takes part – Lavrov

Russia’s foreign minister has expressed his doubts
 over international talks on Ukraine, saying all forces
 in the country should be at the negotiating table.

"Once again gathering in the same format, when the
 opposition to the current regime in Ukraine is absent
 from the negotiating table, this will hardly change
 anything," Lavrov says at a news conference after
a Council of Europe ministers' meeting in Vienna.

 "It’s possible, of course, but we will just go around in
 a circle and once again speak about how everything
 that we’ve agreed on needs to be implemented."

Lavrov says he remains hopeful that national
 dialogue could produce results in Ukraine.

“We are convinced that there is a way out of the
 crisis. It can be found exclusively on the basis
of a national dialogue," - he says, adding that it
 should take place between the western and
eastern regions of the country.



The Russian Defense Ministry is to deploy more
 forces in Crimea - beefing up the Black Sea fleet
 under a $2.5 billion program.

“Before year’s end, we will form new units of air
 defense and marine troops at the sites of our
 fleet’s deployment,” Defense Minister Sergey
Shoigu says.

 “The fleet will receive new submarines and surface
 ships of a new generation this year. This requires
 our attention."


Ban Ki-moon almost wakes up?

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon offers
 to mediate in the worsening Ukrainian crisis,
 and calls on all sides involved to help resolve
 the explosive and escalating crisis peacefully.

“I am urging these four parties (the US, the EU,
 Russia and Ukraine’s interim government) to
 solve this problem through peaceful means,
 and I’m ready to provide my own role --- if
 necessary,” AFP news agency quotes Ban
as saying.



Another helicopter is shot down by machine-
gun fire. Both crew members are unhurt.

The Kiev putsch government sends elite
troops to Odessa and anti-putsch fighters
vow to take over administrative buildings.

The pro-Russian activists say 30+ armed
members were killed & 15 others injured
 during the putsch forces’ renewed crack-
down on Slavyansk, in one day.

In a statement, the Ukrainian Interior
Ministry says four government troops
were killed and 30 others wounded.

Forces in the east of Ukraine fighting for
 federalization are reported to have now
regained control of the cities and towns
 Konstantinovka, Slavyansk, Andreyevka,
 & Kramatorsk, Russia-24 tv channel says.

After an assault by self-defense forces,
the Ukrainian military has pulled back
to Kramatorsk airdrome, reports say.


Odessa Jews ready for mass evacuation

The Jewish community of Odessa is prepared
 for a mass evacuation, should hatred re-erupt
 and threaten them with another genocide.

Odessa saw the deaths of dozens of opponents
of the new authorities, mostly burned to death
in a building by neo-nazis, who used Molotov
cocktails and guns on protesters.

Odessa's Jewish leaders say they are concerned
enough to plan for a mass evacuation, possibly
to "another country".

“When there is shooting in the streets, the first plan
 is to take [the children] out of the centre of the city,”
 says Rabbi Kruskal, head of Tikva organization. “If
it gets worse, then we’ll take them out of the city."

 "We have plans to take them both out of the city and
 even to a different country if necessary, plans which
 we prefer not to talk about, which we have in place."

“If the situation gets worse, we are planning
 to move,” Kira Verkhovskaya, head of the
 Migdal International Centre of Jewish
Community Programs, states.

Rabbi Avraham Wolf, representing the Chabad
 hassidic community, says they're taking extra
 security measures, such as armed guards, and
 are prepared for a possible evacuation.

Together with the International Fellowship
 of Christians and Jews, they have prepared
 70 buses, which are fueled and ready to go.

Odessa's Jews once made up about a third
 of Odessa's population. As Nazi Germany
 and its allies advanced into Ukraine, many
Jews fled east, but hundreds of thousands
were still there, when Odessa was taken
 by Romanian and German troops.

In mid-October 1941, the occupation forces
 started mass executions of everyone they
 saw as enemies, including between 25,000
 and 34,000 Odessa Jews.

The site of one of the worst massacres, where
 thousands were shot, or burned alive in old
 gunpowder warehouses, is now a Holocaust

The memorial was desecrated this year, in
mid-April, along with a Jewish cemetery, as
 "unidentified attackers" painted them with
swastikas, death threats against Jews and
 radical Right Sector symbols.

The nationalist movement denied any links to
 the desecration, offered protection to Odessa
 Jews and sent its representatives to remove
 the hate messages, together with Rabbi Wolf.


Provocation gone wrong: Dark forces
 instigated Odessa violence?

Video footage of the bloody events in Odessa
 shows provocateurs instigating the violence.

Russia’s Channel One TV has reconstructed
the order of events by using YouTube videos
detailing what happened in Odessa.

It began with a football match: Chernomorets
 Odessa versus Metalist Kharkov. Despite high
 tensions, the authorities allowed the match,
even though they knew that a few thousand
 pro-Kiev football fans would be coming.

After the match, around 1,500 supporters of
the Kiev authorities and football ultras came
 together for a march in support of Ukraine’s
 unity. This rally was also sanctioned by the
local authorities.

Nationalists marched to the city centre, chanting
“Glory to Ukraine” and “Death to enemies,” and
“Knife the Moskals (derogatory for Russians).”

Some in the group wore ultra-nationalist insignia,
and carried chains, baseball bats, and shields.

The violence started when the pro-Kiev crowd was
 met by what looked like anti-government activists.

 They were wearing St. George ribbons, identifying
 them as pro-autonomy and red bands around their
 sleeves. Some riot police officers present at the
scene wore the same red bands on their sleeves.

Then a visibly smaller group of alleged anti-Kiev
 activists started to attack the march, apparently
 provoking the demonstrators.

 Footage shows a smaller group wearing
 red bands, luring the pro-Kiev crowd in a
different direction.

At some point, the police line opened up to
 let the men wearing red bands through, then
 closed back up again. A video then shows a
 man standing behind the police lines, who
started shooting at the pro-Kiev crowd.

This succeeded in provoking clashes, as both
 sides began to throw stones, as shots rang out.

The alleged anti-Kiev activists then disappeared
 and the angry pro-Kiev supporters headed to the
 opposition camp at the House of Trade Unions.

None of the original attackers with red bands
 were there. But a few dozen pro-autonomy
 activists were there and when they saw an
angry mob approaching, they took shelter
inside the House of Trade Unions.

Survivors of the fire say they had to barricade
 themselves inside the House of Trade Unions
 to hide from the agitated mob, which torched
 their tent camp.

Radicals then began throwing Molotov cocktails
 at the Trade Unions building, setting it on fire.

 Witnesses say those who managed to escape
the blaze were severely beaten outside by the
 besiegers of the burning building.

The Ukrainian Interior Ministry offers a different
 version of events, saying the victims started the
 fire themselves (sic) when they began throwing
 Molotov cocktails from the upper floor.

Multiple videos of the incident, however, show
 Molotov cocktails being thrown from outside.

 Another video shows that some radical pro-Kiev
 elements were also inside the building, waving
 a Ukrainian flag.

The evidence leads one to conclude that the
 football fans could have been manipulated,
 while unknown forces instigated violence,

Channel One TV says.


No Russians among Slavyansk self-defense
 forces – NYT reporters

The self-defense forces in the anti-Kiev stronghold of
Slavyansk are Ukrainians, not Russians, who distrust
 the new regime and the Western powers that support
 it, New York Times reporters have discovered. The
forces also said that they are not being paid to fight.

Two New York Times reporters have spent a week in
 the city of Slavyansk in eastern Ukraine, talking to
 members of the self-defense forces. The journalists
 visited self-defense checkpoints and observed the
 forces as they battled Ukrainian troops during
the military assault on the city on Friday.

The resistance fighters of the 12th Company, part
of the People’s Self-Defense of the self-proclaimed
 Donetsk People’s Republic, deny claims made by
 Kiev and its Western sponsors that either Russia
or private oligarchs are paying them to fight.

“This is not a job,” one of the activists, Dmitry
 told the NYT reporters. “It is a service.”

Armed with dated weapons, self-defense activists
 said they would have bought new weapons if they
 had financial support. The NYT journalists report
 seeing weapons from the 1980s and 1990s at
 checkpoints and in warehouses.

The activists explained that they purchased some
 weapons from corrupt Ukrainian soldiers, and
 took others from seized police buildings, or
confiscated them from captured Ukrainian
armored vehicles.

“Much of their stock was identical to the weapons
 seen in the hands of Ukrainian soldiers and Interior
 Ministry Special Forces troops at the government
 positions outside the city,” the NYT reporters said.

“These included 9-millimeter Makarov pistols,
 Kalashnikov assault rifles, and a few Dragunov
 sniper rifles, RPK light machine guns & portable
 anti-tank rockets, including some with production
 stamps from the 1980s and early 1990s.”

The head of Slavyansk self-defense, Yury, also
 laughed at claims made by the Kiev authorities
and the West, that Russians are fighting side
 by side with them.

“We have no Muscovites here,” Yury told
 the journalists. “I have enough experience.”

Many of the Company’s 119 members, who range
 from their 20s to their 50s, served in the Soviet
 or Ukrainian infantry, airborne, special forces,
or air-defense units, the reporters said.

Yury, in his mid 50s, said his experience
 includes four years as a Soviet small-unit
 commander in Kandahar, Afghanistan, in
 the 1980s.

“There was no clear Russian link in the 12th
 Company’s arsenal,” the reporters said.

While visiting checkpoints for over a week,
 the NYT reporters said they saw lots of
 support for the self-defense forces from
 local residents, who primarily provided
the activists with food.

“To the guys in Kiev, we are separatists and
 terrorists,” Yury said. “But to the people
 here, we are defenders and protectors.”

Eastern Ukraine's people, who show “passionate
 distrust” of the coup-appointed authorities, felt
 threatened after Kiev stripped Russian  – which
 most of the region's population speak – of its
official status in February.

“That was the turning point,” said Maksim,
one of the Slavyansk activists.

For Ukrainians in the east, many of whom have
 close ties with Russia and families across the
 border, the move was a “cultural assault.”

“All spoke of disgust with the interim authorities
 in Kiev,” the NYT reporters noted in their article.

The eastern Ukrainians have made up their minds,
 Yury told the journalists, adding that they are
 demanding a referendum and will go to war in the
 case of a refusal. He said people in the region are
 puzzled by the West's support of the coup in Kiev,
 and its blatant disregard for eastern Ukrainians'
 opinions and rights.

“Why did America support those acts, but is
 in opposition to ours?” Maksim,  a young
former paratrooper asked. “These are the
contradictions of the West.”



The CIA and the FBI are consultants to the
incumbent authorities in Kiev, and act on
instructions from the US Administration,
says Germany's weekly Bild am Sonnntag
 - quoting sources in German intelligence.

The objective US intelligence services
have been given, the newspaper says,
is to suppress popular protests in the
east of Ukraine and to build a viable
security structure for the regime.

The newspaper claims, however, that
CIA and FBI officers are not involved
 in combat operations in the east, and
 their entire activity is confined to Kiev.

Bild am Sonntag recalls that CIA chief
 John Brennan visited Kiev in mid-April.

 The chair of Russia’s State Duma committee
 for international relations, Dr. Alexei Pushkov,
 says that visit “exposed a close relationship
 between the incumbent government in Kiev
 and the US.”

Dr. Pushkov says with confidence that "the US
 has supplanted the Ukrainian government and
 has installed a regime lucrative for itself."


Russia's Duma demands tribunal for
authorities for
Odessa bloodbath 

The Russian State Duma (Lower House of
Parliament) says the Kiev authorities are
committing war crimes and therefore
 must face a military tribunal.

“I think this is an organised criminal group
that's been acting like this, since the very
 beginning, committing war crimes."

"For these atrocities they must be brought
 to justice as war criminals and they must be
tried by an international military tribunal,”
Irina Yarovaya, chair of the Duma Security
 Committee, says.

She believes support for ‘the self-proclaimed
 Kiev authorities who ordered the extermination
 of their own people, means compliance in this
mass killing of people”.

Duma Deputy Speaker Sergei Neverov is
convinced that “there is no justification”
for what has happened in Slavyansk,
Kramatorsk and Odessa in Ukraine.

“It’s awful that the unleashing of civil war
in Ukraine is supported by the West that,
 in no time, has forgotten all about human
 rights and democratic values, of which,
 the EU countries and the United States,
 claimed to be the advocates."

" Now, no one has any doubt as to who is
sponsoring the unrest in Ukraine and who
sponsored it from the start,” he says.

“I do hope quite sincerely that last night’s
 tragedy will make those who support the
 illegitimate and criminal regime come to
their senses - although the chances of that
 are shrinking, judging from the reaction of
 Western politicians,” Neverov says.

 “Instead of defending the peaceful citizens
 of Ukraine, they block Russian proposals in
 the UN Security Council aimed at a peaceful
 resolution of the issue."

"The West is conniving with Ukrainian radicals
 and Nazis, whose ideology is extermination."

 "Apparently, Europe has learnt no bitter lessons
 from the last century."

Frants Klintsevich, deputy chair of the Duma
 Defence Committee, draws historical parallels
with the current events in Ukraine.

“The EU and US refuse to understand the
 explosive situation in Ukraine and do not
want to figure out what is good and what
 is bad, because they simply can’t benefit
from that. They want a civil war,” he says.

Klintsevich recalls that “during the Great
 Patriotic War [1941-1945], SS battalions,
 manned with Ukrainian nationalists and
commanded by fascists, destroyed the
 village of Khatyn in Belarus, burning the
 elderly, women and children alive”.

“Practically 70 years on, the descendents
 of those fascists did the same, by blocking
 people inside the Trade Union House and
setting it on fire,” he says.

“Why does Europe support such atrocities?”
 the MP asks.

He stresses that all opposition parties in
“enlightened Europe” and the whole world,
 must know what the “present-day fascists”
 did in Odessa.

Chair of the State Duma Committee on CIS
Affairs and Ties with Compatriots, Leonid
 Slutsky, says the bloodbath in Odessa on
 May 2nd, “completely destroys the Geneva
 accords and incites a civil war in Ukraine”.

“What happened, especially the fire in the
 Trade Union House, reminds me of the Nazi
crimes during World War II. This is a new
Khatyn and Auschwitz,” he says.

“Especially outrageous is the benevolent
reaction of the West to crimes committed
 by the Kiev authorities against their own
 people,” he says, stressing that “violence
 must be condemned and stopped”.

Mikhail Starshinov, head of the inter-faction group
 for interaction between civil society institutions
 and law enforcement agencies, condemns the
 Ukrainian Interior Ministry’s statement, that the
 Trade Union House in Odessa had been set on
 fire inside - by the activists themselves.

“By any degree of cynicism, this statement is
 beyond good or bad,” he says. “It's yet more
evidence that certain political forces, will
 stop at nothing, to try to achieve their goals.”

He stresses that Russia is trying to conduct
 a dialogue on the settlement of the situation
 in Ukraine at all levels, including through the
 Foreign Ministry and parliament.

 “However, our opponents remain deaf to all
reasonable proposals on how to de-escalate
violence. As a result, innocent people died.”

 Starshinov says “this scenario would have
 been unbelievable, just two months ago”.

Unrest erupted on Friday, May 2nd, with a mass
 fight started by football fans from Kharkov, the
Right Sector radicals, and members of the so-
called “Maidan self-defence” force, from Kiev.

 They decided to march in the streets of Odessa,
 thereby provoking clashes with the supporters
 of Ukraine’s federalisation.

 As a result, 46 people were killed in clashes
 and over 200 needed medical attention.

The Ukrainian Interior Ministry says the building
 was set on fire by the people who had seized it.

But this disagrees with video footage and all
 eye-witness reports from the scene.


Patriarch Kirill blames 'radical'
politicians for Odessa deaths

“One political position cannot be proclaimed
as the only possible and compulsory one in
modern Ukraine,” Kirill says.

The Russian Orthodox Church is in deep grief
over the new bloodshed in Ukraine as political
 radicals are trying to assert their convictions
 - despite loss of life, Patriarch Kirill of Moscow
 and All Russia says, commenting on recent
events in Odessa, southern Ukraine, and the
eastern Donetsk region, where several dozen
people have been killed.

“Responsibility for this lies primarily with those
 who resort to violence, instead of dialogue.
 Especially disturbing, is the use of heavy
 army hardware in a civil standoff,” he says.

The patriarch believes that “the use of force
 is often motivated by adherence to political
 radicalism and a denial of people’s right to
express their convictions”.

“One political position cannot be proclaimed as
the only possible and compulsory one in modern
 Ukraine,” Kirill says, adding that the Christian
 values of peace, mercy and justice had formed
the people of Ukraine.

He urges “all sides to refrain from using weapons
 and to solve all questions through dialogue” as
 “there is no alternative to dialogue”.

“Ukraine can heal itself and embark on a path
 of building a decent life for its citizens, only
as a common home for people with different
political convictions,” he says.

The patriarch expresses deep condolences
 to the families of those killed.

 “The terrible news of people burnt alive in the
 Trade Union House in Odessa turned over my
 soul and pierced it with excruciating pain."

 "A hideous crime was committed before the
eyes of the whole world, a crime with which
 neither heart nor mind can reconcile.”

“I am praying for Ukraine to be saved and
 healed, for the bloodshed to be stopped,
 for the warring sides to be pacified, and
 for those people with different political
positions to be able, with God’s grace,
to listen to each other and understand
 that attempts to impose one’s opinion
 upon others by force, will lead to the
destruction of a beautiful and blessed
 country,” Kirill says.

“At this time of trouble, my heart is with Ukraine,
with each of its sons and daughters who are
 living through anguish, grief, bewilderment,
 outrage and despair,” he says.


Kadyrov: Ukraine Interior Ministry’s
 statement on Odessa fire ‘cynical’

Ramzan Kadyrov, leader of the Russian republic
 of Chechnya, calls Ukraine's Interior Ministry
 statement on the Odessa fire, “cutting-edge
cynicism” and “over-the-top impudence.”

Ukraine's Interior Ministry said in a statement
 that it was the people inside the building who
 started the fire, using Molotov cocktails.

“This is cutting-edge cynicism and some kind
 of over-the-top impudence,” Kadyrov says.

 “There is video available showing some people,
 which I doubt were females, pouring gasoline
 in bottles. After that, radical youngsters threw
 these bottles at the building, the ground floors
 were set on fire and people tried to save their
lives by jumping out the windows."

 "However, we and the whole world are -
eventually - told that the fire erupted
 on the upper floors.”

“Not even the nazis acted like this.” He continues:
 “First, to burn people alive by blocking all entrances
 and setting them on fire, and then to tell the whole
 world that it was the people inside the building,
who hurled bottles with flammable substances
 at each other.”

The Chechen leader also says he was shocked by
 another video, which shows extremists from the
 radical Right Sector movement touring the Trade
 Union House after the fire, inspecting dead bodies
 and making jokes.

“This is a place of tragedy, a place of sorrow,”
 Kadyrov says. “This is a crime scene, on top
 of everything. Where were the police, who had
 to conduct an investigation and cordon off the
 building? The obvious conclusion is that there
are no police. There are only extremists, who
 are killing people and telling the whole world
 outrageous lies.”


10 killed, around 30 injured in Kramatorsk

in overnight fighting – self-defense leader

10 residents in Kramatorsk died and almost
30 were injured in the fighting that broke out
overnight near the eastern Ukrainian city,
 says a self-defense leader.

"Last night 10 people on our side died, they
were all unarmed civilians,” the leader, who
 wouldn’t give his identity, tells RIA Novosti.

He adds that 30 people were wounded
 after the Ukrainian army opened fire.

Earlier reports said one self-defense activist
was killed
and nine were injured.

Ukrainian Interior Minister Arsen Avakov warned
 that the special military operation in Kramatorsk
 would resume.

“The active phase of the operation will continue
 at sunrise,” Avakov said on his Facebook page.
 “We are not going to stop.”

Avakov also said 2 self-defense checkpoints
 were destroyed near Kramatorsk airport.

The storming of Kramatorsk is part of a wider
 military operation in eastern Ukraine, which
 intensified when Ukrainian troops attacked
an anti-government stronghold
at Slavyansk.

The city was surrounded by the
military, with
dozens of APCs and 20
helicopters engaged
in the operation.

The fighting reportedly resulted in 3 casualties.
Two helicopter pilots died,
say Ukrainian military
officials, while self-
defense forces in Slavyansk
say that one
of their members was killed.

Over 10 people were killed and around 40
  injured, when members of the Right Sector
 opened fire on civilians in eastern Ukraine,
 the People’s Mayor of Slavyansk says.

Civilians had reportedly formed a human
to protect their village from the

right-wing group.

“In Andreevka village (a suburb of Slavyansk)
 during the night, people blocked entry to Right
 Sector members, forming a human chain along
the road. Members of Right Sector opened fire,
 killing over 10 people,” The People’s Mayor of
 Slavyansk Vyacheslav Ponomarev, states.

According to the People’s Mayor, members
 of the Right Sector would not allow anyone
 to move the wounded, and opened fire on
 people who tried to approach them.

Graham Phillips, a reporter in Andreevka,
100 Ukrainian soldiers set up camp
 in the village, but then left.

 He uploaded a video onto his YouTube feed
 showing the dead body of a man who had
been shot dead by soldiers, according to
 local residents.


President Obama calls the coup leaders
in Kiev,"the duly elected" government".

Putin's spokesperson Dmitry Peskov
says that those describing 'Kiev's junta
as legitimate' are also accomplices of
the crimes that took place in Odessa.

Backing the organizers of a state coup in Kiev,
in their policy of the forcible suppression of
protests “the United States and the European
 Union take huge responsibility, actually cutting
 ways for peacefully settling the current crisis,”
 the Russian Foreign Ministry states.

“With this in view, the US’s strong defiance
of the April 17 Geneva statement
to support
an initiative to organize a dialogue
representatives of the Kiev authorities
the south-eastern Ukrainian regions under

the Organization for Security and Co-operation
 in Europe's (OSCE) aegis, does not look at all
accidental ,” Russia's diplomatic agency noted.



  A credible source in Russia’s government
draws attention to the recent change in
 the form and tone of the Kiev regimes’ P.R.

“It isn't being formed at all by Ukrainians,
but by specialists from abroad. The PR
group for 'anti-Russian actions' involves
US experts now."

 "We know shoulder straps show through
 the suits and sweaters of some of them."

"There are also European spin doctors,
specifically, from Belgium, who backed
 the Georgian invasion of South Ossetia
 and tried to persuade the world then of
“Russian aggression” and even achieved
 some success for a time," the source says.

“Some of these specialists currently working
 in Kiev under the umbrella of the SBU (Security
 Council of Ukraine) are well known to us."

"We also know that one of their tasks is
to send disinformation to large numbers of
mass media outlets in the US and Europe,”
he notes.

He says their work is focused primarily on
 European public opinion.

 “Here, it’s more difficult to mislead journalists.
 Their main strategy is also clear: to say that
everything that takes place in the south and
 east of Ukraine is inspired, prepared and
 implemented by Moscow, specifically - by
 the FSB (Federal Security Service), GRU
 (Main Intelligence Directorate of the RF
 General Staff) & the like,” the source says.

“However, the information group staying in
 Kiev is so far producing poor work.

 What’s the point of letting Arsen Avakov down
 so coarsely by “smart” shooting at helicopters
 that only “Russian saboteurs” are capable of?
 Were they too lazy to watch the videos?”

Video footage of the shooting has been
spread all over the Internet. The single
 shots are clearly visible on it, he says.

“Sloviansk, Kramatortsk, Luhansk", they say,
 "are invaded by Russian special task forces?"
 Well done!

"But then, it is also necessary for them, to
 ban showing poorly armed people from the
Ukrainian cities on TV. Do it, you really can,
 otherwise, your audiences won’t believe you."

 "It’s no good to regard information users in
 the Western world as idiots, as you’ll turn out
 to be the idiots yourselves,” says the source.

“And, the main thing to do, arriving at a hotel
 - not far from the SBU - is to remember to look
 in the refrigerator: what if a Russian saboteur
 is hiding there?"

 "Your reports suggesting it was Moscow that
 provoked all this in Odessa, look absolutely
 blasphemous and silly."

 "Are you aware who was armed with assault
 rifles there and who wasn’t? You should look
 at the Internet and watch TV,” he advises.

Noting that Western TV channels are so far
 not broadcasting the horrible video footage
of the clubbing of victims of the Odessa fire
who jumped from the burning building, the
 source stresses:

 “All the same, they’ll have to do this. And in
 what, excuse me, deep hole will Turchynov
 (Ukraine’s acting president) who is so
protected by you, find himself?”

“In general, I’m guessing that you, ladies
 and gentlemen, this time, will not succeed.

 And do you know why? Because there really
IS fascism in Ukraine. It’s impossible to justify
 it, although you are capable of many things,”
 he says.

The source recalls Georgia’s ex President,
 Mikhail Saakashvili.

“Many of you worked with him. Where is he now?
And he seemed to be a good learner - no match
 for the current Ukrainian ones,” he notes.

At the same time, the source believes, the
 information failure now, cannot be blamed
 on the Western spin doctors only.

“More serious people have provoked the Kiev
 regime into spilling bloodshed in its own country,
 and this is far worse than information mistakes.

This is a crime against humanity, and nobody will
 manage to justify it,” he concludes.



Many (38) are now reported to have died, either
by falling to their deaths to escape the fumes
- or by suffocating, trapped inside the building.

Those who jumped were then beaten to death
by the pro-putschists outside.

Ultra-nationalists and football thugs - some
using machine-guns - were confronted by
anti-putsch campaigners, who say they
warned for weeks that Right Sector mobs
were being sent to Oddessa from Kiev.


Self-defense forces in Crimea say they are
heading to the southeastern regions to help 
pro-Russian protesters against coup troops.


Ukraine uses aviation, airborne troops
 against civilians in Slavyansk

The Ukrainian army has restarted a full-scale
punitive military operation in Slavyansk, in
the Donetsk region. The Kiev authorities are
using helicopters and troops on civilians.

Units of the Ukrainian Interior Ministry, the
 Right Sector neo-fascists, National Guards
 and special Armed Forces, are all taking
part in a "special operation" in Slavyansk.

"The Ukrainian authorities are using helicopters
and airborne troops against civilians. Armoured
  vehicles cover the offensive by airborne troops."

 "Combat helicopters of the Ukrainian Air Force
are hovering in the sky above Slavyansk. The
town is completely blocked," a representative
of the People's Militia of Slavyansk says from
 a checkpoint in the town centre.

Acting Interior Minister Arsen Avakov states
 that local militiamen responded to the troops,
 by using automatic fire and heavy weapons,
 including grenade launchers and MANPADS.

 A pilot was killed and several people have
been wounded. According to the minister,
Ukrainian law enforcers managed to
capture nine checkpoints in Slavyansk;
...and the town is now surrounded.

 At about 11:30 a.m., the punitive operation
against the civil population was suspended.
Possibly, the Ukrainian army took a break
to regroup their forces.

Self-defense forces managed to shoot down
 three helicopters. According to them, one
 pilot was killed, and another taken captive.

The head of the Security Bureau of Ukraine,
 Valentyn Nalyvaychenko, is commanding
the punitive operation in Slavyansk.

As reported by the General Staff, Minister
 of Internal Affairs, Avakov, a neo-fascist
who poses as a liberal, was dismissed
from commanding this attack, due to 
the failure of the first stage.

In addition to military and intelligence agencies,
 Right Sector fighters are now participating in the
 assaults against civilians. They are tasked with
 regaining control of the town by the next night -
at any cost.

This, despite the Kiev Rada (parliament) voting
overwhelmingly to disband the Right Sector a
few days before... so - who is calling the shots?

The UK's Guardian continues its political
mission (to confuse 'Liberals') by filling its
pages with anti-Russia quotes and photos
- by barely mentioning the neo-fascists in
government and attacking civilians - and
by coyly describing the armed Right
Sector thugs as "nationalists."

The local population is building barricades and
 say they are ready to stand as a human shield
 against armored vehicles.

In one of the districts of Slavyansk, they
have blocked a bridge over the river. Many
 residents have taken to the streets, to
defend the town.


"Several protesters are injured in the offensive",
says Slavyansk city’s self-defense unit.

A commander at one checkpoint says the
Ukrainian army has taken control of the
city’s TV broadcasting centre.

A city administration spokesperson says
the Ukrainian army is putting up artillery
 around the captured TV station.

In a phone conversation with German Chancellor
 Angela Merkel, Russian President Vladimir Putin
called for Ukrainian troops to pull out of the
southeast parts of the country.

The US immediately responded by calling the
proposal "laughable".



The current leader of Ukraine is reneging
on his previous commitment to dialogue
with the south and east regional people

and has now ordered full conscription
for 18 - 25 year old males, plus a plan to
hold a "unity referendum".


Army operation in southeast Ukraine to
 be Kiev’s last attack - Crimean leaders

The Ukrainian army offensive against regions
 controlled by militia in the South-East will be
 the last attack of the present Kiev authorities,
 Crimea’s acting Head Sergei Aksyonov and the
Crimean State Council (parliament) Chair,
 Vladimir Konstantinov said.

“The crooks in Kiev do not understand that
 everything they're doing will boomerang on
 them personally. A war against one’s own
people has never done any good. We think
 they must be put on trial,” he adds.

 “At any rate, history will make its own
assessment of these villains, who are
sending troops against their own people.”

In his opinion, a resumption of the army operation
 will produce a result opposite to that expected by
 Kiev. “They still do not understand that all this will
 bring about resistance ten times stronger than now.

 "The killing of peaceful people must not be forgiven
 no matter what goals are pursued. They must come
 to their senses,” Aksyonov says.

“We express our support to the people of the
South-East of Ukraine, who are legitimately
fighting for their rights and freedoms,” he says.

Konstantinov echoes him, by saying that a
 resumption of the army operation in the
south-eastern regions of Ukraine, “will be
 the last attack of the Kiev authorities.
They touch one person and they will get
 a response ten times bigger.”

He believes that Kiev is creating a
situation “which cannot last forever”.

 “The people who have come to power in Kiev
 are inadequate. I won’t be surprised if they
proclaim Hitler as their honorary leader,

 "I think that sooner or later, this Nazi orgy will
have to be stopped, so that it doesn't bring
 disgrace upon the Russian world before the
eyes of the whole planet,” Konstantinov says.


Lavrov calls for OSCE-mediated
 talks between Kiev and protesters

Russia’s Foreign Minister calls for talks
between the Ukrainian authorities
the protesters in the east of the country,

 saying that the Organization for Security
 and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) could
 mediate the negotiations.

 "Russia believes that such a dialogue could
 be arranged between the authorities in Kiev
 and their opponents in other regions of the
country, under the aegis of the OSCE,"
tells Rossiya-24 TV.


Ukrainian Interior Minister
               Suspected of Attack on Mayor               
 Ukrainian Interior Minister Arsen Avakov is
 the main suspect of the attack in which the
Kharkiv Mayor, Gennady Kernes, was badly
 injured, according to Kernes.

A well-known opponent to the rulers who
 overthrew President Viktor Yanukovich,
Kernes was shot by an unidentified
 individual while he was jogging.

According to medical sources, the mayor
 underwent gunshot wounds in the liver
and a lung.

Amid the investigation, a denunciation made
 by Kernes, quoted by Ukrainian news agency
 Unian, posted on the regional administration
  website in mid March, accused the "interim"
Minister Avakov, who in just two months has
 been involved in a second violent crime.

"I address delegates of the Ministry of
the Interior of Ukraine in Kharkiv region,
 the heads of the regional prosecutor's
 office and the SBU (security service), to
call their attention to it," said the mayor.

Kernes warns about "dozens of threats that
 we - I and my family, including the children -
have received lately, as political persecution."

When pointing at possible suspects, he makes
 it clear that "Arsen Avakov, former governor
of Kharkiv and incumbent interior minister of
Ukraine, may be behind these threats against
 the physical integrity and the life of my family,"
the mayor charged.



Russia's Deputy Foreign Minister says that
Russia is not going to
move on the S. East
of Ukraine militarily,
in the way they did
in Crimea and the
Kiev coup leaders know
this is true, as
they admit to having lost
control there.

Pro-Russian forces have seized state
buildings in the eastern Ukrainian city
of Horlivka, tightening their hold on
the east.

They also seized Horlivka's city council
building and took control of the police HQ,
after weeks of blockading that building.

Horlivka, a town of almost 300,000 people,
is just north of Donestk, which held their
referendum on separation from Ukraine
on May 11th.



As the US's Kerry uses a megaphone
to make countries like Lithuania cough
up 2% of their GDP to pay for NATO..
and insists NATO will "be destroyed"
if it doesn't face-off Russia's Putin...
calmer voices in Europe prevail:

Russia doesn't seek the secession of eastern
 Ukraine, a German expert on Russia tells the
 Saarbrucker Zeitung newspaper.

“That is why the issue of further sanctions
should remain pending,” says Gernot Erler,
 the German government’s co-coordinator
for relations with Russia, warning against
 “the risks of new punitive measures”
 against Russian officials.

“If it really comes to further sanctions,
the West will also have to reckon with
retaliatory sanctions,” he notes.

 “And then the question arises as to whether
 the spiral of reciprocal measures will be
 controllable at all.”

He says a third set of sanctions against Russia
 depends on “whether Russia will bring escalation
 to the point when secession from Kiev in the east
 of Ukraine, like it was in Crimea, will loom”.

However, “so far, there is no evidence that
 Russia is pursuing this goal”, the expert says.



Pro-Russian demonstrators have taken full
 control of a regional administration building
 in the eastern Ukrainian city of Luhansk.

Hundreds of pro-federalists, including around
20 youths equipped with
metal bars, gained
full entrance to the regional
building in Luhansk, one of
the largest cities
in Ukraine's troubled east.

The protesters then raised a Russian flag
above the building, as 3,000+ protesters
 waited outside to be allowed in.

“The regional leadership doesn't control
its police,” says Interior Minister aide,
 Stanislav Rechynsky, adding, “The local
police did nothing.”

Pro-Moscow protesters seized Ukraine’s
 State Security Service building in Luhansk
near the Russian border, weeks ago.

The West and Russia remain divided over
 eastern Ukraine, where pro-Russians keep
occupying key government buildings and
have held referends on obtaining greater
autonomy for Ukraine's regions.

The US has been responding to Russia's
demand that they stop supporting the
interim government in its armed push
on the East, by sanctioning Putin and
his team and by increasing a military
build-up on Russia's borders.



Former GOP congressman and presidential
candidate Ron Paul, says the US sanctions
 are an act of war - and that the US people
are tired of US-imposed wars.

When you block the trade of goods & services
 with a particular country, it may not be quite as
 bad as dropping bombs, but it is a “symbol of a
 war,” Paul tells Channel 4 News, UK.

The US people want no part of a conflict
 with Russia, just as they wanted no part
in a war against Syria last summer, but
 the US administration is still “playing
games” by threatening Russia and by
adding sanctions, Paul adds.

“We’ve been involved too much, and I take
 a non-interventionist foreign policy position."

"It’s not our business, it doesn’t serve
anybody’s interest, it’s part of the same
thing that led us into the disaster in the
Middle East, a lot of people die, a lot of
money spent and we’re still suffering the
consequences of the war in Iraq and
Afghanistan and there’s the threat of war
in Syria. We don’t need another threat.
The American tax-payers don’t want it,
and our government thinks they can
get away with it.”

“There are a lot American citizens who’ve
 joined with me in saying we've had enough
 of this, we’ve had enough of intervention,
 we’ve had enough of these wars and we’ve
 had enough of this debt and the American
 people are getting sick and tired of it,” says
 Paul, who sought the presidency of the US
on three occasions: as the Libertarian Party
 nominee in 1988 and as a candidate in the
 Republican primaries of 2008 and 2012.

The US military build-up on Russia’s doorstep
 has raised concerns of a direct confrontation
 between Washington and Moscow over Ukraine.



Satellite photos show that around Slavyansk,
 in eastern Ukraine, the coup authorities are
 concentrating enough forces to make it and
 its inhabitants disappear from the face of the
Earth, says the Russian Ministry of Defense.

Novosti shows that troops have been deployed
 around Slavyansk with the "objective of making
 the city and its inhabitants disappear from the
 face of Earth", according to a military source.

The government imposed after President
Viktor Yanukovich was overthrown, is now
concentrating over 15,000 soldiers, nearly
160 tanks and 230 armored vehicles, plus
infantry and personnel carriers, around
the city.

Dozens of missile launching platforms and
mortars are also visible in the photos, say
 the experts, quoted by RIA Novosti.

The sources from the Russian Ministry of Defense
 assure that there is no explanation from a military
 viewpoint, and note that what they are doing in
the region no longer seems a "police operation".

The concentration of troops in that zone cannot be
 compared to the potential of the self-defense forces,
 which are armed with a small number of guns and
 machineguns, the experts say about Slavyansk.

With Washington's support, Alexander Turchinov,
the self-proclaimed interim president of Ukraine
 and the speaker of Parliament after Yanukovich's
 overthrow, ordered a large-scale military operation
 against eastern Ukraine, where people do not
 recognize the authorities imposed in Kiev.

In the regions of Donetsk, Kharkiv and Lugansk,
 inhabited by a Russian-speaking majority, the
 demonstrators, organized in people's self-defense
 forces, have held a referendum on that region's
 federalization, now want recognition of their
wishes on the status of the Russian language
and on more autonomy.

They also demand the disarming and withdrawal
 of neo-Nazi detachments of the Right Sector and
 Self-Defense Forces of Maidan, which have been
 mobilized from western Ukraine to the region and
 are made up of members of the recently-created
(and unconstitutional) National Guard and
paramilitary squadrons.

Near the self-proclaimed People's Republic of
Donetsk, Slavyansk is the most active hotbed
of resistance by the popular militias against
 the concentration of divisions reinforced with
armored vehicles which
Kiev has sent.



After the US decides that the Egyptian
regime is not a coup regime and lifts its
  sanctions, a court in Egypt sentences
 683 supporters of the legal President,
 Morsi, to death.

The court issues the verdicts at a hearing
 in the southern province of Minya on Monday.

The leader of the Muslim Brotherhood Party,
 Mohamed Badie, is among the defendants
 who received capital punishment.

A court in Egypt also bans the April 6 Youth
Movement, which spearheaded the revolt
against the former Egyptian ruler, Mubarak.

The court issued a ruling against the
movement based on a media complaint 
accusing the group of "defaming Egypt"
and "colluding with foreign parties".

The movement turned into a critic of the
military-backed regime, after authorities
 stepped up pressure on all dissidents,
after the ousting of former president,
 Mohamed Morsi, back in July 2013.

The group’s leader, Ahmed Maher, was
sentenced to three years in prison in
 December 2013, for violating a law
banning non-police sanctioned demos.

International bodies and human rights
 groups have already denounced such
court rulings as a grotesque example
of Egypt's post-coup justice system.

Egypt’s military-backed government has
 jailed nearly 16,000 people over the past
 few months.


Pro-Russian protesters seize another town in
eastern Ukraine, after capturing the town hall

 in the Donetsk city of Kostyantynivka.

A group of some 20 pro-Russian activists took
control of the town hall and hoisted the flag of
the 'Donetsk People’s Republic'.

The activists set up barricades outside
government building and also set up
perimeter around the police station.

Kostyantynivka, with a population of 80,000,
 lies mid-way between the city of Slavyansk
 and the regional hub of Donetsk, which are
 both now controlled by pro-Russian protesters.

The day before, some 400 pro-Russian activists
seized the
Donetsk regional telecentre, and
 called for an end to the station’s broadcasts.

They accused the broadcaster of distorting news
 about developments in the east of the country.

Meanwhile, ambassadors from the EU’s 28
member states imposed more sanctions
against Russia over the crisis in Ukraine,
including moves against President Putin
and his allies, hitting them with asset
freezes and more travel bans.

The move was coordinated with the US and
the rest of the so-called 'Group of Seven'

 major industrialized nations (G7), including
the UK, France, Germany and Italy, as well
as Canada and Japan.

The Russian Foreign Ministry denounces
the move and urges the EU to stop trying to
 intimidate Moscow, and make an effort to
 find a solution to the unrest in Ukraine.

Russia says it is a "shame" for Europe to
slavishly follow the US on this, as the
US interest lies in defeating Asian and
European intra-development.


Germany Increasingly Involved in Ukraine Conflict

In view of the worsening of the situation in Ukraine,
voices are increasing in Germany, of those against
 a military confrontation, and, even more, any NATO
 participation in it.

According to the Peace Council, the largest alliance
 of peace organizations in Germany, the leaders of
 NATO, European Union and the German government
all agree on attributing blame to Russia on Ukraine.

However, organizations for Peace say it has
 been the western, that is to say the German
 government, the European Commission and
the US government, which have tried to
increase their influence.

'By political and economic blackmail they are
trying to isolate Ukraine from the Russian zone
 of influence, to subordinate this country to the
 conditions of the European market and the
military structures of NATO, states the text.

Meanwhile, members of the Socialist Party of
 Germany criticize the military offensive of the
 de facto government in Kiev, in the East.

'The German government should publicly reject
 the military escalation in Ukraine provoked by
 the de Facto Prime Minister, Arseni Jasenjuk,
 and new threats by the US Secretary of State
 John Kerry, says the spokesperson for policy
 development of the socialist group in parliament.

A political solution should include disarming
 ALL irregular groups, Hansel adds.



Moscow says Kiev must disarm radical nationalist
 groups, particularly the Right Sector, which toppled
 the previous legal Ukrainian government, and start
 negotiations with the peaceful protesters, instead of
threatening them with tanks and rocket launchers.

If Kiev chooses to escalate the crackdown on the
 protesters by using heavy arms against them, then
says it reserves the right to use its own
military, to
stop the bloodshed.


Militia fighters repel attack on block post
 near ammo depots in east of Ukraine

According to reports by eyewitnesses
 the attackers fired M-16 assault rifles

Unknown people in camouflage uniforms opened
 fire on a block post located near the Ukrainian
city of Soledar at the site of an old ammunition
 depot, the press service of the government of
the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) confirmed.

According to preliminary unconfirmed reports of
 eyewitnesses, only one people’s militia fighter
of those who came under fire survived, the rest
were killed.

According to eyewitnesses, the attackers
 fired American M-16 assault rifles.

A representative of the DPR press service
 confirmed the shooting:

 “Indeed, the attack was made on a block post
that is located in the immediate vicinity of the
 Volodarsky mine (that is between the cities
 of Artyomovsk and Soledar),” he said.

According to him, the Ukrainian National Guard
 fighters landed from a helicopter in that area.

The militia fighters managed to repel the attack,
 wounding one attacker and capturing another.

 Local residents then walked to the block
 post, in order to protect it from new attacks.

The incident took place near the Volodarsky
 mine, in the salt diggings of which, a large
 amount of weapons and ammunition is stored.


S. Africa celebrates 20th anniversary
 of end of racist apartheid...

South Africa celebrated the 20th anniversary of
its first ever all-race, democratic general election
 that put an end to apartheid, a system of racial
segregation enforced in the country from 1948
 to 1994.

 South Africa's first black majority leader, Nelson
 Mandela, fought the regime of discrimination for
of his life.

April 27 is celebrated as a national holiday
 in South Africa, named Freedom Day, ever
since 1994.


Ukraine halts canal water supply to Crimea

(Crimea receives 85% of its fresh water
 through the North Crimean canal).

Ukraine has closed the sluices of the North
 Crimean Canal, halting the water supply from
 the Dnieper River to the peninsula, Ukraine's
 UNIAN news agency reports.

Crimea received 85% of fresh water through
the canal, which was built in 1961-1971. It
stretches from the Khakhovka Reservoir,
 to Kerch.

Crimean PM Sergei Aksyonov says that the
restrictions on the supply of water to Crimea
are an act of sabotage.

“Ukraine’s act of sabotage - to limit the supply
of water to the republic through the North
Crimean Canal - is nothing but a deliberate
action against Crimeans,” he said.

Aksyonov said “negotiations are underway with
 Ukraine at the federal level” to resolve the issue.
 “There are backup plans. In any case, Crimea will
not be left without water. As for drinking water,
 there are no problems with it,” he said.

The prime minister said Crimea's authorities
 are talking with all agricultural producers
 who have been cut off from water from the
North Crimean Canal.

 “The rice situation … is the worst. Crimea is
 redrawing the map of crop areas in regions
 where irrigation may not be available,” he
 said, adding that alternative areas are
being offered to agricultural producers.

“The federal budget is ready to compensate
agricultural producers for possible losses,”
 Aksyonov said.

“Special conditions have been created for
 Crimea. No one will be left without help.
We're also considering an alternative plan
 for drilling wells and we're working on this
 day and night.”

Aksyonov said “the persons who have seized
 power in Ukraine, including former residents
 of Crimea, Senchenko and Kunitsyn, are acting
 like enemies trying to cause their former fellow
 citizens harm. But they will receive a proper
assessment from the people of Crimea and will
 always be persona non-grata in the republic."
"Usually," he added, "those who mischief
hatch, mischief catch.”


Russian planes did not enter
 Ukrainian airspace - Moscow

Russian military aircraft did not breach
 any state borders, including those of
Russia’s Defense Ministry said.

 Ukraine’s acting defense minister also
rejected claims by Kiev that Russian jets
 “violated Ukrainian airspace seven times.”

“Russia’s means of objective airspace situation
 control, did not record any violations of air
boundaries of the states adjacent to Russia,
including those of Ukraine,” Russia's Defense
Ministry said in a statement.

Pentagon officials quoted by the US media
claimed that “Russian fighter jets flew into
Ukrainian airspace a handful of
times over
the last 24 hours,” calling it “a
provocation.” The officials were

“The unfounded claims of Pentagon officials
 on the alleged ‘breaching of the airspace of
Ukraine by Russian fighter jets' appears to
have been based on rumours & speculation,”
said a Russian Defense Ministry spokesperson.

“Those media allegations are populist in nature
- they contain no information on the time and
 place of the incident, as well as no data on
 altitude, speed and the direction of aircraft,
as well as no other objective parameters,”
the spokesperson said.

The US sources must have “dreamed it all up,”
 or “a little bird told them that,” the spokes-
person added.

The Defense Ministry spokesperson called on
 Pentagon officials to stop “spreading unverified
 ‘facts’ through the media,” saying “it does not
 at all help de-escalate the situation in Ukraine.”

Instead, the US Defense Department should “use
 the many years’ experience of cooperation on
 information interchange” with the Russian side.

The Ukrainian coup-imposed acting defense
 minister, Mikhail Koval,  told
journalists that
no violations of state borders
by aircraft or
troops had been recorded.

“Four Il-76 transport airplanes flew along
 our state border but they did not cross the
 borderline,” Koval stated.

The “peak of activity” of Russian Armed Forces
 conducting military exercises near the Ukrainian
 border was recorded on April 24th to the 25th, he
 said. The closest Russian troops came to the
 Ukrainian border was 2-3 kilometers, Koval said.

According to the Ukrainian official, the Russian
 drills were meant to discourage Kiev continuing
 with a so-called “anti-terrorist operation” in 3
 southeastern regions of Ukraine. However, he
added, military operations continue, “although
their pace is not high.”

Koval’s statements apparently contradict those
allegations made
earlier by the Kiev government
against Russia.

“Russian military aircraft today at night crossed
 and violated Ukrainian airspace seven times.
 The only reason is to provoke Ukraine and to
 accuse Ukraine of waging war on Russia,”
 the coup-imposed Ukrainian PM Arseny
Yatsenyuk claimed on his visit to Rome.
Yatsenyuk has made similar unfounded
allegations of “Russian tanks in Crimea”
 and “nuclear weapons in Iran.”


Russian media urge UN, OSCE, UNESCO
 to protect journalists in Ukraine

Representatives of Russian TV channels urge
 international organizations, including the UN,
 UNESCO and the OSCE, to protect the rights
 and dignity of journalists covering Ukraine's
crisis from illegal acts by Kiev's authorities.

Disturbed by the intensified assaults and
 intimidation of journalists in Ukraine, their
 detentions and deportations, the heads of
Russia's major TV corporations, including
 RT, call on human rights organizations to
 “defend journalists' professional right to
 work in Ukraine.”

“Ukraine’s Donetsk, Lugansk, Kharkov,
 Dnepropetrovsk and other regions are
witnessing the ruthless suppression of
civil liberties on a daily basis."

"Journalists are being threatened with their
 lives if they continue to report from Ukraine,”
the letter reads, signed by the heads of the
All-Russia State TV & Radio Broadcasting
 Company (VGTRK), NTV, REN TV, Channel 5,
 RT and News Media.

“The new Ukrainian authorities have repeatedly
 taken illegal actions barring our staff journalists
 covering the Ukraine crisis from performing their
 professional duties and violating their human
 dignity,” the letter says.

In the latest incident, Lifenews journalists
Julia Shustraya and Mikhail Pudovkin, were
detained and then deported to Russia.

 The crew was abducted by armed Ukraine
Security Service members, after filming an
 interview with one of the leaders of the pro-
federalization movement in Ukraine.

“[Journalists] are being watched, their phone
 conversations wire-tapped. There were cases
 when journalists were forced to get down on
 their knees, beaten during detention & illegally
 deported from Ukraine,” their joint address to
the UN, OSCE and UNESCO reads.

The plea states that, as a member of the
 Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of
Europe, Ukraine must follow requirements
 in the Declaration on Mass Communication
 Media and Human Rights:

 “Public authorities must make available
 information on matters of public interest
 and mass communication media must
 give complete, general information on
 public affairs.”

Article 9 of the Declaration prescribes that
 “special measures are necessary to ensure
 the freedom of foreign correspondents in
order to permit the public to gain accurate
 information from abroad,” and “protection
 from arbitrary expulsion.”

The letter also states that Russian news
crews working in Ukraine do not violate
any existing laws, and that if they are
 “barred from reporting from Ukraine, the
civil rights of people around the world
 to receive information will be violated.”

Ukraine had 139 violations against the press
 and 51 attacks registered by the Committee
 to Protect Journalist (CPJ), last year, but
attacks on the press have intensified after
the February coup.

As international delegations met in Geneva,
 two still unidentified men attacked Yevgeny
Polozhy, editor-in-chief of independent news
website Panorama, in Sumy city. Polozhy
 was allegedly beaten and hospitalized with
a broken skull and other bodily injuries.

Ukraine’s Security Service also arrested
a producer working for Russia’s NTV channel,
 Belorussian national Stepan Chirich, who was
 detained in the city of Pershotravensk in the
 Dnepropetrovsk region.

 Chirich is still in custody, accused of bringing
an undeclared video camera into Ukraine. A
 Ukrainian cameraperson from Lugansk, who
 accompanied Chirich is still under arrest.

Unknown assailants threw Molotov cocktails
at the newsroom of newspaper Provintsiya
in Konstantinovka town, in Donetsk region.

The Russian Foreign Ministry urges the OSCE
to react “to these mass repressions of media
workers” during military operations by Kiev
in the southeast of Ukraine.

Konstantin Dolgov, Russian Foreign Ministry
 commissioner for human rights, tweeted:

“Detentions of 'undesirable' journalists by
Ukrainian authorities and radicals - violation
 of freedom of speech and the media. Where
 is the reaction from Western "human rights"
 watchdogs?” he tweeted.

OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media,
Dunja Mijatova, said the organization is “very
 concerned” by repeated attacks on journalists:

 “Journalists must be allowed to report freely
 - their safety ensured by all those in charge.”



The US is pushing Venezuela into “civil war”
 as it has eyes on the country’s oil wealth,
 Bolivian President Evo Morales warns.

“I believe it is trying to incite if not a coup d’état
 then a civil war, from their empire,” Morales tells
 a Latin American Youth Summit in the Bolivian
 city of Santa Cruz.

“They always sponsor internal conflicts,
so they can interfere, and invade us to
 take control of our oil reserves,” he added.

Morales called on people to stand in solidarity
 with Venezuela, saying the world needs an
 “anti-imperialist, anti-capitalist and anti-
colonial youth.”

Venezuela has witnessed violent pro and
anti-government protests since February.

The opposition criticizes the administration
 of President Nicolas Maduro for Venezuela's
 high crime rate and economic hardships,
 claiming that his policies have led to a
shortage of essential goods and a high
inflation rate.

Maduro, however, accuses the US of
backing the opposition to launch a coup.

The Venezuelan leader ordered the expulsion
 of 3 US consular officials earlier in February,
 accusing them of meeting student protest
leaders under the guise of offering them
visas, to destabilize the country.

Washington denies the charges as
“baseless and false.”


Aggression against Russian citizens will
 be considered an attack against Russia

Russia's Federation Council, which previously
 unanimously approved the president's right to
 deploy Russian troops on
Ukrainian territory
 to defend the Russian-speaking people, says
 "a powerful peacemaking group" should be
sent to the south-east of Ukraine.

 Russian senators believe all parties - the
EU, US, Kiev and the south-east of Ukraine -
 should come to an adequate agreement.

The situation around the southeast of
Ukraine continues to escalate.

"We need urgently to sit at the negotiating
 table ...and agree on how to introduce the
 peacekeeping contingent in the south-east.

Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov explained in
a recent interview, in what scenario Russian
troops could be deployed in Ukraine:

 "The deployment of troops can be carried out
 in the case of a direct infringement of the
interests of Russia and Russian citizens,"
 the minister said.

"If we are attacked, naturally, we will defend
 ourselves." Lavrov added. "Aggression against
 Russian citizens will be considered an attack
 against Russia."

The "people's mayors and governors" of the
south-east of Ukraine have already appealed
 to the Russian authorities to deploy peace-
keeping forces to protect the southeast from
punitive operations by the Kiev regime.

 President Putin, speaking at a media forum
 in St. Petersburg, described the military
operation of the Ukrainian authorities in
the southeast as a "punitive operation".

"Everyone understands that Russia does not
want to start a war in the south-east, nor does
 it want to establish a military presence there...

"Kiev decided that it can not be like that, so
 it launched military operations, which have
already led to casualties," says the head of
 the Institute for National Strategy, M. Remizov.

"The last warning to Kiev, in my opinion, is the
 military drills near Ukrainian borders. If they
stop the massive use of force, then there is a
 chance of avoiding war. If not, then, it seems
 to me, that, in spite of everything, Moscow
can cross the line," he added.

According to Strator and many military experts
 around the world, in case of armed clashes (i.e.
 war) between Russia and Ukraine, the Ukrainian
 armed forces would be destroyed in a "short
 period of time."

Neither the US, nor NATO countries will attack
Russian troops - no matter where they're held
 - inside or outside Ukrainian borders. They will
 not fight on the Ukrainian army's side either.

All they can do is to use militants from private
 military companies, reported Pravda.

No matter how many foreign warships there are
 in the Black Sea, one single volley from them
will mean retaliation that will instantly escalate
 into a war between Russia, the US or NATO.

The US and EU emphasize that there will
 be no military assistance to Ukraine. Will
 there be peacekeeping assistance?

"We do not need peacekeeping forces. Firstly,
we can handle it all ourselves, and, secondly,
 their deployment would mean the break-up of
 Ukraine into sectors of responsibility: a part
goes to Europe, a part - to the United States,
a part - to Russia," a high-ranking source in
 the government of Ukraine told Politonline.

 The source then said: "It's like we are on a
 bobsleigh track - we either reach the finish
 line or crash - this is a terribly idiotic situation,
 it's horrible, f***!" he then hung up the phone
and did not pick it up any more.



Ecuador has ordered 20 US military staff
 working at the US Embassy to leave.

US embassy spokesperson Jeff Weinshenker
 said the group was ordered to halt operations
 on April 7th, AP reports.

In January, Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa
 publicly complained that the US had too many
 military officers in the country.

At that time, he said he planned to order some
 to leave. Many say the action was taken over
 concerns about US espionage.


Acting Ukrainian PM Arseniy Yatsenyuk
 accuses Russia of seeking to trigger a
“Third World War.”

In a televised cabinet meeting, Yatsenyuk
accused Moscow of trying to occupy Ukraine
“militarily and politically,” creating a conflict
that will spread to the rest of Europe.

“The world hasn't forgotten the Second World
 War and Russia wants to start a Third World
 War,” he added.

The Ukrainian official said Russia’s support
 for anti-Kiev protesters is an international
 crime, and he called on the international
community to unite against Moscow.

Ukraine’s Defense Minister, Mykhailo Koval,
 says Russian troops holding military exercises
 close to the Ukrainian border, came within
one kilometer of the border but didn't cross it,
and added that Ukraine's armed forces were
ready to repel any aggression.

The interim authorities in Kiev said that
 army units have begun the second phase
 of an operation to drive out pro-Russia
 activists from all the eastern cities.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov
denounced Kiev’s operations in eastern
 Ukraine as a “bloody crime,” saying the
Ukrainian government is waging a war
 on its own people.

He also accused the West of plotting to
 control Ukraine:

 “The West wants - and this is how it all began
- to seize control of Ukraine because of their
own political ambitions, not in the interests
of the Ukrainian people.”

Failed Ukrainian "actor" Andriy Deshchytsia
- now Ukraine's "acting foreign minister":

“The Ukrainian people and Ukrainian army
 are ready to do this. Ukraine will confront
 Russia. We will defend our land. We will
 defend our territory,” AP quoted him saying.

Deshchytsia said Russia's military drill “very
 much escalates the situation in the region,”
and added, “We will now fight with Russian
troops, if... they invade Ukraine.”

Deshchytsia also called on the EU to
 impose fresh sanctions on Russia.

Acting Head of the Presidential Administration
 of Ukraine, Serhiy Pashynsky, said a second
stage of an "anti-terrorist" operation has begun
 in Slavyanskcity, held by protesters.

The first stage began the day before, when
Ukrainian troops entered the eastern city,
killing at least five pro-Russia protesters.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov says
 the Ukrainian government is waging a war
on its own people.


Ukraine military launches next stage
 of military op 'to isolate Slavyansk'

Kiev authorities say “the second stage” of
 their military operation in Slavyansk, will
 “completely isolate” the anti-Kiev stronghold.
 Self-defense forces prepare for the assault.

“The aim is to completely isolate Slavyansk
 to localize the problem. At the moment, the
 operation is ongoing,” the official told media.

The military do not intend to storm Slavyansk,
 fearing civilian casualties, the Ukrainian
 Security Service claimed.

“We will not go the length of casualties, to
storm the city. We understand that this
 may lead to many people coming to harm,”
 General Vasily Krutov, first deputy head
of Ukraine's Security Service (SBU), is
 quoted as saying by Interfax.

Pashinsky meanwhile repeated Kiev claims
 that “terrorists have placed their key strong
points in kindergartens and hospitals,” and
branded the situation in Slavyansk “classic
 terrorism.” The claims were dismissed by
Slavyansk activists as “ridiculous.”

Despite the promises of no storming of the
 city, Slavyansk self-defense activists braced
for an assault, which they feared may soon
start - disguised as a “blockade.”

Self-defense activists claimed that a convoy of
military armored vehicles and troops bearing
 “no insignia” had been spotted moving in the
 direction of Slavyansk, then it “disappeared
 into the woods” surrounding the city.



The Marshall Islands are suing the nine
 nuclear powers at the international court
 of justice at The Hague for committing
"a flagrant crime against humankind".

Victims of atomic bomb tests equivalent
 to a thousand Hiroshimas, this small
archipelago in the Pacific Ocean has set
 in motion a legal action over the damage
 suffered during those "experiments".

From 1946 to 1958, this chain of islands,
which includes Bikini Atoll and Enewetak,
was the site of 67 nuclear tests, including
 the "Bravo shot", a 15-megaton device
equal to a thousand Hiroshima blasts,
which was detonated in 1954.

The Marshall Islands condemn the nine States
 with atomic bombs including the United States,
 Russia, the United Kingdom, France, China,
 Israel, India, Pakistan and the Democratic
 People's Republic of Korea.

Being a US protectorate, the archipelago,
 however, demands the implementation of
 chapter six of the Non-Proliferation Treaty,
which, in 1970, committed the US, Russia,
 France and China to dismantle their
atomic arsenals.


US and coup leaders
driving world to war.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon warns
 that the situation in eastern Ukraine could
quickly “spin out of control,” calling on all
parties involved in the crisis to "refrain
 from violence."

"The secretary general is deeply concerned
 about continued violence in eastern Ukraine,
which has led to loss of life, further instability
 and which is contributing to a climate of fear
& anxiety," the UN chief said in a statement
 issued by his office.

Ban warned of the dire consequences of
 the continuation of violence in the country:

"The stakes are now so high, the secretary
general is seriously concerned that the
situation could quickly spin out of control
 - with consequences we cannot predict."

He also called on all parties to refrain
from any provocative action that might
 fuel the flames of violence:

"Military action must be avoided at all costs,"
 Ban said, urging all sides "to immediately
 refrain from any violence, intimidation or
provocative actions, & find a way forward
 toward de-escalation."

On April 17th, Ukraine’s interim government
- with the US, EU and Russia - reached 'the
Geneva agreement', calling on all sides to
 ease the ongoing crisis in eastern Ukraine.

Four days later, however, Kiev ordered a
 re-launch of a military crackdown on pro-
Russian demonstrators in the region.



Russia 'forced' to launch military drills at
 border in response to Ukraine op - Moscow

Russia began extensive military exercises
 in Ukrainian border areas, after escalation
 of the army violence in eastern Ukraine.

“The order to use force against civilians has
already been given, & if this military machine
is not stopped, the amount of casualties will
only grow,” Russian Defense Minister Sergey
 Shoigu said at an official meeting in Moscow.

“War games by NATO in Poland and the Baltic
 states are not helping the normalization of the
 situation. We're forced to react to the situation.”

Shoigu said the drills involved marching and
 deployment exercises by forces in southern
and western military districts, plus separate
Air Force maneuvers.

Shoigu said 11,000 Ukrainian soldiers, 160
 tanks, 230 armored carriers and over 150
 artillery pieces are now involved in the
operation against the anti-Kiev activists.

"National guard units and Right Sector
 extremists, as well as the volunteer
Donbass ‘anti-terrorist’ unit, are all
 fighting against a peaceful population".

 "Security and internal forces transferred
 to Lugansk and Donetsk from other areas
of Ukraine, are also suppressing dissent,"
the minister said.

He added that Ukrainian sabotage units
 are deployed near the Russian border.

Shoigu said the pro-Russian self-defense
 units number about 2,000 and have about
 100 guns between them, mostly taken
from their local police stations.

NATO estimates Russia amassed
 over 40,000 troops near its border.

 Moscow isn't denying that it's moved
 troops to the region, but says that all
 internal troop movements are its own

NATO began military exercises in Poland,
with more taking place in the Baltic states.

Poland’s foreign minister, R. Sikorski, has asked
NATO to deploy 10,000 troops in his country.



At least five protesters are killed
 and one injured as Ukrainian troops
 enter the eastern city of Slavyansk,
held by pro-Russia protesters.

Ukraine's Interior Ministry issued a
report saying at least 5 pro-Russian
protesters were killed and one police
officer, injured.

“During the military operation three
 checkpoints erected by the illegal
 military groups were destroyed in
northeastern parts of Slavyansk,”
 said the ministry.

Locals told reporters that at least 8
 armored personnel vehicles passed
through a village near Slavyansk.

There were also reports of helicopters
 circling the city, and that all mobile
phone connections were disconnected.

 Ukraine’s interim Interior Minister, the
neo-fascist Arsen Avakov, announced
Mariupol city had been "retaken" with
no casualties.


Civil war looms as fighting rages
in eastern Ukraine

A source in Ukraine’s Joint General Staff says
 the operation against Slavyansk was planned
by the country’s Security Service, the SBU,
and that Interior Minister Avakov, is no longer
responsible for the operation.

The groups storming Slavyansk, consist
of roughly 5,000 militants of the far-right
Right Sector movement, either acting on
their own as terror groups, or operating
as National Guards, the source said.

 These groups were being supplied with
 NATO intelligence and aerial photos of
 the region. The data was being delivered
by couriers to avoid interception.

Kiev isn't planning to use regular troops
 in the mutinous regions, as the soldiers
have been refusing to fight against their
 own people.

The SBU has also deployed up to 500 troops
 from special forces groups to the area, the
 source said.

The ongoing crisis in Slavyansk and Mariupol
 is the result of an irresponsible policy by Kiev
 authorities supported by the neo-Nazi groups,
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said.

Russia's authorities have no doubt that the
 US can and should make Kiev start a de-
escalation of the situation in eastern
 Ukraine, he added.


CSTO chief says Russia, NATO
now in direct confrontation.

Russia and NATO are now in a state
 of direct confrontation, said the head
 of the Collective Security Treaty
Organization (CSTO).

"In fact, due to some NATO countries' actions,
 we're heading to, and have reached, the level
of direct confrontation," Nikolai Bordyuzha told
reporters after a meeting of CSTO Security
Council officials in the Chechen capital Grozny.

The Russian chief mentioned anti-Moscow
sanctions, the presence of NATO warships
in the Black Sea, and attempts by Ukrainian
ultra-nationalists to sneak into Russia for
subversive activity.

Bordyuzha called these actions a "psychological
 attack" which provokes further rises in tension.

He noted that the CSTO hasn't been involved
 in the events in Ukraine and does not want
 other international blocs (NATO) to do it.

In March, Bordyuzha criticized NATO's "self-
propaganda" throughout the Ukraine crisis,
 saying that NATO Secretary General Anders
 Fogh Rasmussen had promoted himself via
 Ukraine's domestic political problems.

Fresh unrest erupted in Ukraine's east in
early April, when pro- Moscow activists
 seized government buildings in several
cities, demanding a referendum on
autonomy and closer ties with Russia.

 Ukraine accuses Russia of supporting
 the unrest, a move denied by Moscow.

Taking into account the changing situation
 in the world, the CSTO might reconsider its
 objectives, both on the regional and global
 level, Bordyuzha said.

Russia currently chairs the CSTO which
includes Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan,
Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan.



 Ukraine's coup president Oleksandr Turchynov
 ordered a new "anti-terrorist" operation on
separatists holding eastern towns, after two
"brutally tortured" bodies were found.

"Security agencies are working to liquidate all
 the groups currently operating in Kramatorsk,
 Slavyansk and the other towns in the Donetsk
 and Lugansk regions," said Deputy PM Vitaly
 Yarema, reported Interfax Ukraine.



Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov warned
 that Russia would respond if Moscow’s interests
 were attacked in Ukraine - as it did in Georgia
 six years ago.

Lavrov’s warning recalled the 2008 war with
Georgia, over South Ossetia.

"If we're attacked, we will certainly respond.
 If our interests, our legitimate interests, the
 interests of Russians have been attacked
directly, like they were in South Ossetia, for
 example, I do not see any other way but to
 respond in accordance with international
law," Lavrov stated.

His warning was the clearest hint at possible
 military action and came as 600 US troops
 headed to the region, in a show of force.

On April 17th, Kiev’s interim government,
 together with the US, Russia and the EU,
 reached an agreement in Geneva, calling
for all sides to ease the ongoing crisis in
east Ukraine, where anti-Kiev protesters
 are occupying state buildings in several
towns and cities.

Tension between Western powers and
 Moscow heightened after the Crimean
 territory declared independence from
Ukraine and formally applied to become
 part of Russia after a
March referendum.

 Almost 97% of the participants voted to
rejoin the Russian Federation, and the
turn-out was over 83%.



Israeli ministers say now that they are
going to keep colonising East Jerusalem.

In the occupied West Bank, Israeli
settlers uprooted over 100
olive trees,
in the occupied West Bank in one day

The settlers destroyed the trees belonging
 to Palestinian farmers in the village of Ras
Karkar, northwest of the West Bank city of
Ramallah, on a Sunday.

The olive harvest is the main annual source
 of income for the villagers and they say the
 frequent settler assaults on their property
have affected the livelihood of farmers.

“The olives and oil we make from these trees
are our only source of income. We live off
land. Settlers contaminate our water.
They prohibit us from reaching the springs,
and they cut down our tress,” Ali Azmi
Samhan, a Palestinian farmer, said.

Villagers said the settlers returned to Ras
Karkar and attacked Palestinian farmers
trying to replace the destroyed trees.

On January 1st, the Tadamun Foundation for
 Human Rights, an NGO, said in its annual
report that an estimated 8,000 trees, some
of them hundreds of years old, have been
  destroyed by Israelis.

“Settlers’ attacks include uprooting, burning
 and cutting down olive trees… Olive groves
were also flooded by wastewater from the
 settlements,” said the rights group.

“We have been unable to count the hundreds
 of trees also damaged in groves close to
 settlements due to Israeli security measures.”

Villagers living south of the West Bank city
 of Nablus have said that Israeli settlers used
 chemicals in several cases last June to burn
1,500 trees there. In the blaze that followed,
 over 49 acres of prime agricultural land was
 also destroyed.


Yanukovych says....

Ukraine’s President, Viktor Yanukovych,
 now addresses, in a written statement
 to the current Kiev authorities, the acute,
 deteriorating situation, in the south-east.
In the document, Yanukovych calls on the
 coup leaders in Kiev “to immediately return
 Ukraine’s military forces to their permanent
 bases, to withdraw from the country’s east
 the so-called National Guard units disguised
 in military uniforms, armed with automatic
 weapons and grenades, and to start a
peaceful dialogue with the East's leaders
 on the proposals of people in the eastern
 regions of Ukraine, to build a sustainable
 future for Ukrainians, that saves life”.

“Using arms in the east of Ukraine will not
 change anything now. People are intimidated.
You have called millions of people 'terrorists'.
People don’t have any other choice but to fight
 for their rights, their lives and their children,”
 the address says.

After these first tasks are completed,
 Yanukovych believes it necessary to
schedule and hold referenda in all

Ukraine’s regions on federalization,
and the powers of regions.

 Then, he believes, it will be the right
time to schedule & hold a referendum
 on whether or not Ukrainians want a
 presidential or a parliamentary system.

The Ukrainian president says that - after
 all that - it will then be necessary to carry
 out constitutional reforms, and hold the
 parliamentary and presidential elections.

 In addition, Yanukovych suggests forming
 a system of international control over the
 referenda and elections, and provision for
 the broadest access for observers.

“These five tasks need to be solved. This
 is the only path to preserving Ukraine’s
integrity,” the statement reads.

 “If this is not done, our country may face
 disintegration, and it is unlikely to be
 a peaceful one.

 More likely, it may occur through a civil war.
 Come to your senses! You are pushing one
brother against another, and others will
 benefit from this disaster.”

“I’m addressing, once again, the servicemen
 and special forces staff. They want to use you,
 want you to spill blood and then to make you
guilty of that. You understand by yourselves
 that this will be so. Don’t cross the line!
Don’t fulfill wrongful orders!” he urges.

 “I call on all Ukrainian citizens to preserve our
 peculiar tolerance, calm, and mutual respect,
 in whatever region we live. We must, and we
will, be able to save our beloved Ukraine.”


Protesters in Luhansk co-ordinate
 anti-coup movement, via joint HQ.

Activists in Luhansk have announced the
 establishment of a joint headquarters for
 South-Western Ukraine, to coordinate the
actions of protesters in all other regions,
 local media report.

The joint coordination centre is to be
 based in Donetsk, the source said.


United States self-licensed to kill: Analyst

The United States is using assassination drones
 in other countries in line with its self-declared
 right to kill, an analyst told Press TV.

“It’s a flagrant violation of international law. It is
 establishing unilaterally by one nation, the United
 States, the right to kill at will,” said Rick Rozoff.

The analyst made his comments after a
 report by UN special rapporteur Chris
 Haines said that the US policy of using
 assassination drones presented a major
challenge to the system of international
 law, that's been in place since WWII.

Rozoff said the US has been involved in
 “slaughter from the air” for a decade.

“They’re aerial assassins. If they offend
 international law, they certainly offend
 human morality,” he said.

Rozoff said it would be “simply ludicrous”
to believe that thousands of Pakistanis
killed in the US drone strikes have all
 been “high-profile al-Qaeda commanders.”

“This is no excuse in the war crimes tribunal.
 It certainly won’t be, if the US is ever held
 accountable for its actions,” said Rozoff.

The analyst said that US' unnamed aerial
vehicles, known as ‘hunter killers’, “have
 accounted already, for - conservatively -
 five to six thousand deaths in the last
10 years.”

Washington claims its drone strikes target
militants, although casualty figures show
 that civilians often fall victim to the attacks.

Over the past several years, Washington has
 been launching drone attacks on Muslim
 countries, including Pakistan, Somalia,
and Yemen.


‘Letter to Jews’, which Kerry cited, a fake.

A letter urging Jews in Donetsk to get registered,
 which the US Secretary of State cited in Geneva,
is a fake, says the man whose signature appears
on the communication.

Following the four-side meeting on the Ukrainian
 crisis in Geneva on Wednesday, John Kerry lashed
 out at a letter that was allegedly sent to Jewish
 citizens in Ukraine’s eastern town of Donetsk,
asking them to register and report all their
property, or be stripped of citizenship and
face expulsion.

“In year 2014, after all of the miles traveled in all
 the journey of history, this is not just intolerable,
 it's grotesque - beyond unacceptable," he stated.

Images of the letter were sent circulating online.

The letter was stamped and signed by 'Denis Pushilin',
 who was identified on it as the “People’s Governor.”

However, Pushilin denied he had anything to do
 with the letter, and said it was a fake.

“There are similar letters, not only addressed to
Jews, but also to businessmen, foreign students,
 people of certain other occupations,” he stated.
“This is actually a fake, and not a good one. There’s
 a sign “People’s Governor”. First of all, no one calls
 me by that title, no one elected me. Secondly, the
 stamp is the former mayor’s. Everything is

Pushilin added that sensible people could only
take what the authors of this “letter” are trying
to say, with humour.

The self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic “is
 multinational,” he said. “We get along perfectly well
here with everyone. And there aren’t any conflicts
 on nationalist grounds, that’s for sure.”

Although the letter’s authenticity is questionable,
the fact that it was mentioned by a top US official
quickly sent the “Letter to Jews” story viral.

 It struck a very sensitive chord with audiences
 worldwide, and cast a grave shadow over the
anti-government protesters in Donetsk.

The Daily Mail in the UK parroted the story
on its front page. (This, from a "newspaper"
 which featured "Hurrah for the Blackshirts!"
as its headline in the 1930s).

A Ukrainian MP who visited the region,
 Boris Kolesnikov of the Party of Regions,
urged us all to double-check information
 coming now from Ukraine.

He believes that Ukrainian law enforcement
agencies aren’t being totally honest when
 they describe the people participating in the
 protests and claim that there are Russian
 servicemen among them.

Kolesnikov specifically refers to a video which
 appeared online earlier. In it, a man in a military
 uniform told police officers, who switched sides
 in the city of Gorlovka and joined protesters, that
 he was a Russian Lt-colonel from Simpheropol,
in Crimea.

The man was later identified by Gorlovka residents
 as the former director of a local cemetery.

“Officially, I’ve only seen one Russian serviceman,”
 Kolesnikov says. “The next day he appeared to be
 the ex-director of the Gorlovka cemetery, fired 2
 years ago for selling 38 fences, stealing a monument
 and extorting money from old women for new graves.
"There are Interior Ministry and intelligence
 services in the country, which should
 give us truthful information.”

He adds that it is quite obvious that protesters
 in Donetsk don't represent a danger to civilians
 and he calls for negotiations with the activists.

But the US appears to be relying on information
 from Kiev, and ignoring all other points of view.

 Kerry, a top US official, is exposed as a fraud,
for using a report of extremely questionable
authenticity, for black propaganda.

Earlier in April, the spokesperson for the US
 Department of State, Jen Psaki, said that the
protest events in eastern Ukraine “appeared
 to be a carefully orchestrated campaign with
 Russian support.”

She was then asked if the department was
 only relying on Kiev for its assessment of
the situation, or used independent sources.

“Well, of course, we remain very closely in
touch with the Ukrainian Government, and
 that’s who we work closely with, and, of
course, they are on the ground, so their
 information is often very relevant and
current,” was the reply.

How a coup government proven to include
fascists and anti-Jewish ministers can be
"relied upon", is a moot point, but readers
might like to know that Ukraine's "Free
Territories" (in Ukraine's South East)
 fought Hitler, while the West of Ukraine
 actively supported Hitler's genocide,
and slaughtered millions of Jews.

(As did "brave little Poland")


The US will deploy its ground forces in Poland
 in response to events in Ukraine, according to
 Polish Defense Minister Tomasz Siemoniak.

He makes the remarks one day after a meeting
 with US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel at the
 Pentagon, The Washington Post reports.

The decision has been made at a political level
and military planners are working out details,
 the minister says, adding that there will also
 be intensified cooperation in air defense,
special forces, cyberdefense and other areas.

Poland will play a leading regional role
 “under US patronage,” he says.

“The idea until recently was that there were
no more threats in Europe and no need for a
US presence in Europe anymore,” says

 “Events show that what is needed is a re-pivot,
 and that Europe was safe and secure because
 America was in Europe.”

In a briefing with Siemoniak on Thursday,
 Hagel mentioned that Washington is
considering sending US troops to Poland.

“We have to look at every possibility” based
 on the past actions of Russia, Hagel said.

He added that this includes “an entire range”
of options, including a rotation of US troops
 sent to bases in Poland.

Meanwhile, Pentagon press secretary,
 Rear Adm. John Kirby, says the agency
 is considering military options in Europe.

“As Secretary Hagel made clear, we continue
 to look for ways to reassure NATO allies of
our strong commitment to collective defense,
 under Article Five,” he tells Fox News.

“To that end, we are considering a range of
 additional measures we could take to bolster
air, maritime and ground readiness in Europe.”

The US military deployed 12 F-16 fighter jets
 to Poland in recent weeks and delivered 10
 F-15s to Baltic states for air-patrol programs.

Russia Today suggests that Poland has asked
for 10,000 US troops, but that 150 is the more
likely figure.



A UN official renews calls on Israel to lift
 its seven-year blockade on the Gaza Strip,
 saying the regime must stop  “collective
 punishment” of the Palestinians living
 in the enclave.

In his first trip to Gaza, the new
Commissioner-General of the UN
Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) for
Palestine Refugees in the Near East,
 Pierre Krahenbuhl, says the Israeli
blockade on Palestinian land “amounts
 to an illegal collective punishment.”

“The first thing, of course, you see of Gaza
is the fence around it; a reminder of the
blockade which…has lasted as long as
some of the most infamous sieges of
contemporary history,” adds the
UNRWA official.

Krahenbuhl also voices alarm over the
deteriorating living conditions in Gaza,
 saying the UN agency currently provides
 humanitarian aid to 800,000 refugees in
 the Israeli-besieged sliver.



Russia, the US, the EU and Ukraine adopted a
joint document on de-escalating Ukraine's crisis.

It called for all illegal armed groups to lay
down their arms, and for a "wide amnesty".

“Among the steps that have to be taken are:
 the disarmament of all illegal armed groups,
 and the return of all occupied administrative
 buildings,” Lavrov told the press at a briefing.

“An amnesty for all protesters must take place,
 except for those who committed grave crimes,”
the Foreign Minister added.

The OSCE’s (Organization for Security and Co-
operation in Europe) monitoring mission must
 play a “leading role” in assisting the Ukrainian
 authorities to resolve the crisis, he stressed,
 adding that Russia “will support” their mission.

Before Geneva's 4-way discussions started,
Mr Lavrov talked privately with John Kerry,
 and the EU's foreign affairs chief Ashton met
 Ukraine’s acting Foreign Minister Deshchytsa,
 behind closed doors.

Before Geneva, all four parties disagreed on
 the purpose of the meeting - Moscow insisting
 they focus on resolving Ukraine's political crisis.

 But Kiev rejected the idea of “the internal affairs
 of Ukraine being the subject of the talks,” even
 constitutional reform.

The Ukrainian parliament (Verkhovna Rada)
 --- stripped of its Party of Regions MPs ---
announced on Wednesday, that the meeting
 should aim to end “aggressive actions and
  subversive activities by the Russian Federation
 that put the territorial integrity of Ukraine under

The Western powers reportedly wanted Geneva
as a way to push Moscow into recognizing Kiev
and its coup-imposed authorities as legitimate.

 Lavrov stressed “this will not be the case.”

Speaking at his annual Q&A session, Russia's
 President Vladimir Putin said the Presidential
 election in Ukraine will not be legitimate, as
the country has a current president.

Compromise on Ukraine must be found, not
 between Russia and the US, but among the
political forces in Ukraine, he noted.

Putin urged an immediate start to dialogue
 between Ukraine’s authorities and regions

 Putin is also ready to work with all parties
the elections in Ukraine, including with
Poroshenko and Tymoshenko.

According to him, the
Ukraine authorities
 are illegitimate, but that does not mean
Russia refuses to talk with them.

"We think the authorities are not legitimate, and
 they can not be so: they do not have a national
 mandate to govern the country. However, we
 do not give up contacts with anyone," he said.

"Our ministers have relations with Ukrainian
 colleagues. Dmitry Medvedev talked with
 Arseny  Yatsenyuk and (Chair of the Duma)
 Sergei Naryshkin talked to Oleksandr
Turchynov," said
Russia's president.

The current Kiev regime, illegitimate or
not, talked to by Russia or ignored, says
it is going to press ahead with its army
and special forces operations to quell
dissent in South-Eastern Ukraine.



Vladimir Putin said  the current unelected
NATO Gen Secretary Anders Fogh Rasmussen
 secretly recorded and then leaked a private
 conversation with him, when he was head of
the Danish government.

“During his time as Prime Minister he once requested
 an unscheduled meeting with me, and we met and
 talked. As it turned out, he had a voice recorder on
 him, and surreptitiously recorded our conversation,
 and leaked it to the press,” the Russian president
 recounted during his annual TV hotline.

“I couldn’t believe my ears and eyes –
what nonsense!”

The Russian president didn’t specify when
 the meeting took place, but Rasmussen was
 his country’s PM between 2001 and 2009.

“He explained to me that he recorded the
 conversation for posterity. I am flattered, of
 course, but he should have warned me, or at
 least asked permission to make the content
public,” continued Putin.

“How can you trust someone after an
incident like that?”

Putin spoke about the leak when questioned
on the relationship between Russia and NATO,
 frayed after a succession of contretemps,
climaxing with the crisis in Ukraine.

“From interpersonal to official relations, there
should be more transparency, stability, and
 partnership,” summed up the Russian leader.

Rasmussen’s current office in Brussels,
which he has occupied for five years,
produced a swift response.

NATO Spokesperson Oana Lungescu emailed:
“These accusations are complete nonsense.
During his term in office as Danish Prime Minister,
 Mr Fogh Rasmussen never brought a dictaphone
 to record meetings with Mr Putin or anybody else.”



The United States’ radical policies against Russia
 over the crisis in Ukraine, will plunge the world
 into World War III, a US analyst has warned.

Michael Billington said WWIII has “effectively”
 started, as Washington is escalating tensions
in Ukraine, where pro-Russian protesters are
facing a military crackdown.

“What's at stake here isn't a war over Ukraine;
 it is not even a war with Russia; this is a war
demanded by the British and the Obama
administration, who take orders from Wall
Street and the City of London bankers, who
want a war. And this is not going to be a war
in Europe; this is going to be a global war,”
 says the analyst.

Billington said Obama remains “committed
 to war” as long as he is in office.

“There is nothing that is going to stop this war
 other than impeaching Obama and immediately
 dealing with the financial collapse of the entire
 European and American banking system in order
 to, basically, take the power out of the hands
 of this financial cartel which is driving this
 push for war,” he added.

The analyst said CIA Director John Brennan
ordered the post-coup Ukrainian government
 to quell pro-Russian protests on his visit.



The Ukrainian Communist Party's leader, parliament
 member & presidential candidate Petro Symonenko,
who spoke before the Geneva Document:

"I think the main issue of the four-party talks is
to stop the madness of civil war and the use of
the army against its own people,"

"The fact that the Ukrainian authorities do not
hear people, is one more reason for me to state
it's necessary to immediately reset the authorities."

He cited the acting defence minister as saying on
 Wednesday at a closed meeting of the Verkhovna
Rada that over 1,100 armored vehicles were used
against Ukrainian citizens.

In violation of the country's constitution, 50,000
armed servicemen were sent against Ukrainian
citizens in the so-called "anti-terrorist operation",
the deputy noted.

Symonenko on activities of US officials in Ukraine:

 "I asked Turchynov (Ukrainian parliament-appointed
acting president) to explain for what purpose the CIA
director had arrived in Ukraine under another name.

"He didn't answer. For what purpose did he hold a
meeting with senior Ukrainian officials? Why was
a US representative present in the Verkhovna Rada?

"I want all of us to be patriots of Ukraine, we must
protect Ukraine's people & our statehood," he said.



“Have they lost their minds!?” asked Putin,
 in his annual question and answer session.

 “They are deploying tanks, armored vehicles
 and weaponry! Against whom?! Are they nuts?!"

Putin said he hopes he will not have to use
 his "right" to send Russian military forces
 into Ukraine, in a signal that this option is
 still very much open.

"I very much hope that I am not obliged to
 use this right, and that through political and
 diplomatic means we can solve all of the
acute problems in Ukraine."

Putin emphasized that he favors dialogue as
way out of the crisis, saying he believes
Geneva talks were "extremely important".

"Only through dialogue, through democratic
 procedures & not with the use of armed forces,
 tanks and planes, can order be imposed in the
 country," Putin stated then, adding that Kiev's
authorities are "out of their mind" to do this.

"It is very important today to think about how
to get out of this situation and offer people
 a genuine dialogue and not one just for show."

But he accused the Ukrainian authorities
 who took over after the fall of president
 Viktor Yanukovych in February, of driving
 the country toward the abyss.

"I hope that they manage to understand
 towards what abyss the Kiev authorities
 are going, dragging with them the whole



China's Public Security Minister Guo Shengkun
 warns that “external forces” are trying to provoke
 new waves of “colour revolutions” as they exploit
 socio-economic contradictions and problems in
 target countries.

“They use socio-economic contradictions and
 problems to overthrow governments, trying to
 provoke new waves of ‘colour revolutions’,”
Guo stresses at the 9th meeting of secretaries
of security councils of Shanghai Cooperation

“This poses a serious threat for the sovereignty
 and security of countries in the region and is a
cause of general concern for CSTO states,” the
 minister underlined, calling for the working out
of joint counter-measures.



Deputies of the Party of Regions at the Ukrainian
 Rada, refused to take part in voting at Rada unless
their demands, voiced at their party congress in
Donetsk, were met.

"People, rather than 'criminals', as Mr. Turchynov
 (Rada Speaker) put it, have been perishing in the
 east of Ukraine. People, citizens of Ukraine," said
the head of the Donetsk regional organization of
 the Party of Regions Mykola Levchenko.

 "The current administration of Ukraine came
into power by force to act as 'gauleiters', but
in return, they got a mutiny in the east of
Ukraine," Levchenko said.

"The stabilization of the situation is possible
only if the central administration of Ukraine
heeds the voice of the people.

 We have raised the question of amending the
 Constitution so as to delimitate powers between
 the centre and regions once and for all and give
 the Russian language the status of a second state
 language spoken in Ukraine," Levchenko said.

"The Party of Regions will not vote in parliament
 until our demands are met," Levchenko says.
 "The people are demanding a referendum,"
 he emphasized.


Greek Communists accuse West of
conniving with fascist forces in Ukraine

The United States, the European Union and NATO
 don't hesitate to support fascist forces in Ukraine
 for the sake of their political interests, stated the
 Communist Party of Greece, about Kiev’s military
 moves against protesters in Ukraine's south-east.

“The government in Kiev, that came to power as
the result of a coup and is supported by the US,
 the EU and NATO, has turned the armed forces
 of Ukraine against protesters, against the people
 of Eastern Ukraine, causing new bloodshed,”
the Communist Party said in its statement.

 “This conflict, brought about after the
open interference of imperialistic forces
 in Ukraine, and against the background
 of their tough competition with Russia
 for control over energy resources and
 their delivery routes, shows capitalism
 brings only suffering to the world's
peoples,” their statement said.

It added:  “apparently, the US, EU and NATO,
 which don’t hesitate to support even fascist
 forces in the Kiev government, to advance
 their geopolitical interests, are gambling
now on further escalation & confrontation
 with Russia”.

“In fact, they are playing with the fire of
 a larger-scale war, that will be waged
 not only by diplomatic, political and
 financial means, but also through
 military ones.

“Thus, they are creating the threat of a
 huge catastrophe & numerous casualties
 for our wider region and peoples.
“It is becoming evident that NATO is not a
 guarantor of peace & security, as Greece's
 Prime Minister Antonis Samaras maintains,
 in connection with developments in Ukraine,
 but the Alliance has become a cause of war
 and destabilization for the world's peoples.

 “The earlier the Greek and other peoples
 get free of all imperialistic organizations,
 the better,” the Communist Party said.


Anti-govt protesters seize Ukrainian
APCs, as army units 'switch sides'

Kiev’s military faced off with protesters in
 east Ukraine to sort out their differences
--- and found none.

Soldiers appeared reluctant to go into battle
against anti-government activists.

As Ukrainian Armored Personnel Carriers (APCs)
 entered downtown Kramatorsk as part of Kiev’s
 military operation against anti-government
 protesters in the east of the country, they were
 stopped in their tracks, and surrounded by
 crowds of local residents.

One YouTube video of what happened next
showed a woman coming to a soldier with
reproach:  “You are the army, you must
protect the people.”

“We are not going to shoot, we weren’t
 even going to,” was the soldier’s reply.

Similar conversations could be heard at each
 of several APCs which entered the city, with
locals promising to defend their neighbours,
 if the soldiers started a military operation.

Military vehicles parked in downtown Kramatorsk
 turned into hotspots for political discussion, with
people beside the vehicles trying to get their

views through to people on top of the tanks.

Another video featured Kramatorsk crowds
loudly chanting “Army with the people” and
 applauding the soldiers as they left their APCs.

“Guys, we are with you! You are great!” women
 were heard yelling to the vacating soldiers.

Six Ukrainian military vehicles in Kramatorsk
 switched sides and began flying Russian flags.

Later a report emerged that 3 more Ukrainian
 armored vehicles switched sides in Donetsk.

The vehicles came to the centre of Slavyansk,
 took down their Ukrainian flags and handed
 their weapons to self-defense squads.

“We decided not to be at war with the people
 and not to defend authorities like this,” the
crew members explained to RIA Novosti.

One YouTube video showed an encounter where
 some Ukraine military vehicles raised Russian flags,
 while others raised the flags of Donetsk People’s
 Republic. The crowd reacted with loud cheers.

Vladimir, a resident of Kramatorsk who witnessed
 the events, told RT in a phone call, that a clear
 majority of the soldiers who arrived at Kramatorsk
 in armored vehicles were “boys of only 18-20 yrs
 old, with their heads freshly shaved, as they had
 just entered military service.”

Immediately after the column of armored vehicles
 was blocked near the local market, local residents
 surrounded the column with a human chain, but
 did nothing more, Vladimir said.

“Both sides were simply standing there, smoking,
 waiting for God-knows-what. Then the local militia
 came to the scene, and asked the locals to step
 back, and start negotiations. The soldiers were
 asked if they would like to surrender. They then
a little bit – and agreed,” Vladimir said.

The soldiers and civilians started fraternizing
 very quickly and soon were joking about
 “coming for a visit without weapons next time.”

Many soldiers put on St. George’s ribbons,
the traditional Russian emblem used to
 commemorate the Soviet Union’s fight
against Nazism in World War II.

The tanks have already been driven away
 to a safe place by the local militia, the
 witness said.

Vladimir said that Kramatorsk wasn't under
but confirmed that there were armed
throughout the city.

 Military helicopters have been flying over the
since clashes at a local airport occurred.

 The local Internet connection is extremely
 unstable and mobile networks have been
 functioning only intermittently over the last
few days, he said.

When the military operation against
 anti-government protesters in the east
was launched, it was not so peaceful.

According to activists, four people were killed
 and two others injured when troops seized an
 airfield in Kramatorsk, which had earlier been
 controlled by protesters.


CIA Involvement in Repressive
                 Ukraine Operation Denounced               
 The military operation by the Government in
 the country's eastern region is a result of the
visit by CIA Chief John Brennan, a Ukrainian
 expert affirmed.

President of the Centre for Systemic Analysis
 and Forecasts, Rostislav Itschenko, said that
 the repressive operation taking place in south-
eastern Ukraine was not a casual coincidence,
 considering the presence of Brennan in Kiev.

After Moscow's insistence on a convincing
 explanation for the emergency visit, the US
 State Department confirmed that Brennan
 was in the Ukrainian capital, but denied that
 the CIA had backed a "tactical operation" in
the regions outside Kiev.
Head of the International Affairs Committee of
Parliament, Alexéi Pushkov, said that Brennan's
 visit was a corroboration of the "extremely close
 relationship" between Ukrainian and US leaders.

Meanwhile, in Tallin, US Republican Senator
John McCain declared to the Estonian media
 that the US will provide arms to Ukraine "so
 it can defend itself from Russian threats."

The US Department of State announced that
$11.4 million USD would be allocated for the
snap presidential elections, on May 25th.


Zionist Police Break into Al-Aqsa
 temple in Jerusalem, Wound 30+
Over 30 Palestinians holding a sit-in in Al-Aqsa
 Mosque were wounded after Israeli occupation
 forces shot at them in an attempt to eject them
by force from the mosque, Al-Manar says.

A large number of police officers broke into
 Al-Aqsa Mosque courtyard, firing rubber bullets
 and stun grenades. The occupation forces also
 detained a mosque guard.

Palestinians held the sit-in to stop Israeli forces
 attempting to bring Jewish settlers to Al-Aqsa
to perform their rituals, Palestine Today said.

Witnesses say that Zionist Special Forces and
 snipers were deployed to force Palestinians to
 leave the yards of Al-Aqsa as troops besieged
 those in the mosque, Arabs48 website reports.

Special Forces were deployed at all entrances
 of Al-Aqsa. They set up checkpoints, to stop
 hundreds of women and men under the age
of 50, from worshiping in the mosque.

Israeli forces also assaulted protestors
 near Bab Hatta and Bab Al-Silsila.

It is noteworthy that tightening the security
 measures in and near Al-Aqsa coincides with
 extremist Jewish calls for breaking into Al-Aqsa.


Kiev launches military operation
in eastern Ukraine

Ukraine’s coup-appointed acting President
Aleksandr Turchinov announced the start of
 a crackdown on anti-government protesters
in the north of Donetsk Region:

“The aim of these actions is to protect the
citizens of Ukraine.”

According to Turchinov, this ‘anti-terrorist
operation’ also aims to prevent “attempts
to break Ukraine apart.”

The anti-government protesters in south-
eastern Ukraine have recently protested
 against the coup-appointed authorities.

They demand constitutional reform that takes
 into consideration the interests of all Ukrai