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Scoop of the day: Two Ukrainian servicemen killed in Donbas

Scoop of the day: Two Ukrainian servicemen killed in Donbas

Donbas

Two Ukrainian servicemen were killed as a result of an IED explosion, the Joint Forces Operation HQ has said. Russia-backed militants breached the truce twice by firing grenade launchers and heavy machine-guns near Zaytseve and Popasna.

The 79th detached air assault brigade Mykolayiv identified the two as Lt-Col Ruslan Prusov and Master Sergeant Vadym Fedoseyev.

Bayraktars

The Defence Ministry will buy additional Bayraktar reconnaissance drone systems for the needs of the Ukrainian Armed Forces next year, the Defence Ministry's press service has said.

During a working visit to Donbas, Defence Minister Oleksiy Reznikov and Armed Forces Commander-in-Chief Lt-Gen Valeriy Zaluzhnyy, heard a report by the commander of the Joint Forces, Lt-Gen Oleksandr Pavlyuk, on the security situation in eastern Ukraine.

Reznikov mentioned the urgent need for further procurement of Bayraktors for the needs of the army.

"Our Turkish partners have publicly announced that they are taking Ukrainian engines to equip the Bayraktars. We still have additional plans to purchase them next year. But these will be Ukrainian Bayraktars, I stress. That is, they will be made in Turkey, but they will be Ukrainian, they will be used because we have to defend our independence, including under Article 51 of the UN Charter," the minister said.

Tycoon's relations with president

Businessman Rinat Akhmetov has denied that one of the reasons for the deterioration of his relations with the presidential office and Volodymyr Zelenskyy was the "manner of communication" by the presidential team.

"No, that is not true. I communicate respectfully with everyone and I will not allow anyone to speak boorishly to me," Rinat Akhmetov said in a commentary to Radio Liberty.

The businessman refused to answer the question of whether he (or his associates) communicate directly with the president.

Saakashvili

President Volodymyr Zelenskyy had a telephone conversation with Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili on the morning of 12 November to discuss the case of jailed Ukrainian citizen and former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili.

Zelenskyy said that Saakashvili's rights must be respected and disproportionate coercive measures are unacceptable. The president also asked that Saakashvili's mother, relatives and Ukrainian doctors be provided access to him.

Ex-minister facing charges

Investigators of the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) and the State Bureau of Investigation (DBR) have announced the former energy and coal industry minister (2014-2016), Volodymyr Demchyshyn, a suspect in the terrorism case.

The suspicion was announced under Article 258-3 of the Ukrainian Criminal Code - assisting a terrorist group or a terrorist organization, the SBU said.

According to the investigation, from December 2014 to February 2015, the minister issued a number of orders appointing representatives of L/DPR terrorist organizations to positions in state-owned enterprises located in the temporarily occupied territories.

"In addition, the minister, exceeding his authority, forced the heads of the state energy generation company to conclude several agreements with representatives of the L/DPR. In particular, on the supply of coal worth over 3bn hryvnyas," the SBU said.

Crime

Ruslan Makarets, a 37-year-old Ukrainian citizen, has died of stab wounds in Makiyivka penal colony No32 located in the temporarily occupied territory of Donetsk Region, ombudsman Lyudmyla Denysova has said on Facebook.

She recalled that Makarets was detained by the occupying authorities 2019 in occupied Horlivka on 22 March. He was illegally sentenced by the so-called DPR supreme court to 13 years in prison for allegedly "spying for the Ukrainian security services".

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