Live Blog: Ukraine In Crisis
September 30, 2014
A Ukrainian soldier cuts a fellow serviceman's hair at their base camp near Debaltseve on September 29.
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-- Ukrainian authorities say they have launched a criminal investigation against a Russian law-enforcement agency suspected of supporting separatist and "terrorist" groups in Ukraine.
-- The Ukrainian announcement comes a day after Russian officials said they had opened a criminal investigation into alleged "genocide" committed against Russian-speakers in eastern Ukraine.
-- Pro-Kyiv officials in Luhansk say separatist shelling with Grad rockets has caused civilian casualties and destroyed buildings and a bridge in the city of Popasna.
-- The Russian ruble fell to new record low against the dollar and sank against the euro in trading on the Moscow Exchange today. The Russian Central Bank has said it is very close to intervening to support the ruble against the dollar and the euro.
-- Euromaidan, the Ukrainian pro-Europe movement that staged the Kyiv protests leading to the ouster of former President Viktor Yanukovych, was awarded the 2014 Lech Walesa Award.
*NOTE: Times are stated according to local time in Kyiv
Some very specific advice from the head of the Donetsk regional state administration that's worth a read. Of the Minsk protocol that produced the current cease-fire, he says:
[T]here is no stimulus for the parties to execute the agreements, and there is no mechanism by which execution of one point guarantees execution of the next. The documents do not provide the mechanisms for arbitrage and sanctions that force the sides to stick to the agreement.
But the main problem is that the parties do not have a mutual vision of the future of the Donbas region, and this is the key reason why the peace process gets so much criticism. And this is the case when a bad peace is no better than a war.
Here's Reuters video of Russian Investigative Committee spokesman Vladimir Markin yesterday announcing the Russian criminal case against Ukraine's political and military leadership for what it regards as "genocide" against Russian-speakers in eastern Ukraine. Ukraine and Western countries accuse Russia of stoking separatism in eastern Ukraine, and deploying troops and equipment there.
Schlumberger is an oil-field services provider. The withdrawal includes "about 20 mid-level and senior managers," Bloomberg says.
Today's situation map from the Ukrainian National Security and Defense Council: