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Live Blog: Ukrainians Elect New Parliament


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-- Servant of the People, the party of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, appears on course to win a parliamentary majority, according to data from the Central Election Commission.

-- Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy's party is on track to hold a historic majority in parliament. How much power will he have, and what will he do with it?

-- A Greco-Roman wrestler whose Rwandan father died in combat is just one of the new faces elected to Ukraine’s parliament in snap elections on July 21.

-- Volodymyr Zelenskiy, and the political party he gave birth to, came up big in the snap elections, netting a majority of seats in parliament. Next on tap? Finding a prime minister who can steady the economy, tackle corruption, negotiate with the IMF, and spearhead other urgent reforms.

*Time stamps on the blog refer to local time in Ukraine

22:41 15.3.2019

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From Canada's foreign minister:

21:01 15.3.2019

Oleg Deripaska citing "basic principles" of justice...

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Here's an updated version of an RFE/RL news story we posted earlier:

U.S., EU Impose New Sanctions On Russia Over Ukraine

The United States, together with the European Union and Canada, imposed new sanctions on March 15 on more than a dozen Russian officials and businesses in response to the country's "continued aggression in Ukraine."

"Today's action targets individuals and entities playing a role in Russia's unjustified attacks on Ukrainian naval vessels in the Kerch Strait, the purported annexation of Crimea, and backing of illegitimate separatist government elections in eastern Ukraine," the U.S. Treasury said in a March 15 statement.

Six officials were targeted, along with six Russian defense companies, and two Russian energy and construction firms operating in Crimea.

The six defense firms operating in Crimea were targeted for misappropriating Ukrainian state assets to provide services to the Russian military during the 2014 annexation, it said.

Four of the six Russian officials targeted by the measure were involved in the attack near the Kerch Strait attack in November off the coast of Crimea, the Treasury said.

Moscow has said the three Ukrainian Navy vessels had illegally entered Russian territorial waters, a claim denied by Kyiv.

"The United States and our transatlantic partners will not allow Russia's continued aggression against Ukraine to go unchecked," said Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.

"This joint initiative with our partners in the European Union and Canada reinforces our shared commitment to impose targeted and meaningful sanctions in response to the Kremlin’s attempts to disregard international norms and undermine Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity," he added.

Earlier in Brussels, the European Union added eight Russian officials to its sanctions list for their involvement in the November attack.

The EU sanctions, imposed after Russia seized control of Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula in March 2014 and began supporting separatists in eastern Ukraine, now includes 170 individuals and 44 entities.

The conflict between Ukrainian government forces and Moscow-backed separatists has left some 13,000 people dead since April 2014.

With reporting by Rikard Jozwiak in Brussels, AP, and Reuters
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A few tweets from the U.S. special envoy for Ukraine:

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