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Scoop of the weekend: Russia said building up troops at border again

Scoop of the weekend: Russia said building up troops at border again

Daylight saving time ends

Ukraine turned clocks backward one hour (GMT+2) on 31 October.

Russian military buildup at border

A renewed buildup of Russian troops near the Ukrainian border has raised concern among some officials in the United States and Europe who are tracking what they consider irregular movements of equipment and personnel on Russia’s western flank, The Washington Post reported on 30 October.

It noted that videos have surfaced on social media in recent days showing Russian military trains and convoys moving large quantities of military hardware, including tanks and missiles, in southern and western Russia.

"The point is: It is not a drill. It doesn’t appear to be a training exercise. Something is happening. What is it?" it quoted Michael Kofman, director of the Russia studies program at the Virginia-based nonprofit analysis group CNA.

Donbas

A Ukrainian serviceman sustained a combat injury in Donbas, the Joint Forces Operation HQ said in its evening update on 31 October.

Russia-backed militants have committed eight ceasefire violations since midnight, including four with banned heavy weapons.

The Joint Forces returned fire to suppress enemy activity.

Coronavirus

The Education Ministry has said that 87.3% of Ukrainian teachers have received one dose of the coronavirus vaccine.

On the morning of 31 October, Ukraine reported 17,430 new Covid-19 cases, most of them in Kharkiv Region (1,934), Odesa Region (1,521), Sumy Region (1,176), Zhytomyr Region (1,166) and Dnipropetrovsk Region (1,141). There were 336 fatalities.

Kyiv is joining the red coronavirus zone as of 1 November. Vaccination certificates or negative PCR tests will be required to use public transport, visit shopping centres, cinemas and the like.

An additional makeshift vaccination station will be deployed at Kyiv's Olympic Stadium on 31 October-1 November in addition to similar stations at shopping centres and in hospitals.

Poland

Ukrainian Foreign Ministry spokesman Oleh Nikolenko has dismissed a remark on the "discrimination" of Poles in Ukraine made by Secretary of State at the Polish Foreign Ministry Szymon Szynkowski vel Sek.

"It misleads our societies and does not reflect the real state of friendly and partnership relations between Ukraine and Poland. We are surprised that this statement came one day after the successful meeting in Warsaw of the advisory commission on meeting the educational needs of representatives of the Ukrainian minority in Poland and the Polish minority in Ukraine. The commission confirmed mutual understanding and mutual openness to a constructive dialogue," Nikolenko told Radio Liberty.

He called on Polish officials "to refrain from political assessments that discord with the real intentions and steps of the parties to strengthen the partnership between Ukraine and Poland in different spheres".

Kharkiv by-elections

Observers of the Committee of Voters of Ukraine, an election watchdog NGO, have noticed case of bussing, controlled voting and illegal campaigning in Kharkiv where local residents are electing the city head and two constituencies holding parliamentary by-elections. A number of polling stations have failed to ensure the observance of sanitary requirements.

Electricity

Ukraine will not import Belarusian or Russian electricity as of 1 November, the head of the parliamentary committee on energy and utility services, Andriy Herus, has said on Telegram.

Crime

Ukrainian law enforcers have detained a group of cyber criminals who infected companies in Europe and America with ransomware. The damage caused reaches 120m dollars, the cyber police department of the National Police said.

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