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Scoop of the day: Deputy interior minister dismissed

Scoop of the day: Deputy interior minister dismissed

Deputy interior minister out

The Cabinet of Ministers has accepted the resignation of Deputy Interior Minister Oleksandr Gogilashvili who squabbled with a police patrol in Donetsk Region on 10 December.

He came into the media limelight because of the incident. He appears to hold a Russian passport and a tax number. He is a husband of the president's personal assistant, Mariya Levchenko.

UK warns Russia over Ukraine

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson spoke to Russian President Vladimir Putin today.

He expressed the United Kingdom’s deep concern over the build-up of Russian forces on Ukraine’s border, and reiterated the importance of working through diplomatic channels to de-escalate tensions and identify durable solutions.

The Prime Minister emphasised the UK’s commitment to Ukraine’s territorial integrity and sovereignty, and warned that any destabilising action would be a strategic mistake that would have significant consequences.

He also recognised the importance of dialogue on international and regional security, and they agreed it is imperative that all sides respect the terms of the Minsk Protocol.

USA

Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba has met US Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Karen Donfried, who arrived in Kyiv on a working visit, the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry's press service has said.

"The sides coordinated the positions of Ukraine and the United States on the eve of the assistant secretary of state's visit to Moscow. The US side agreed with the principle 'no decisions on Ukraine without Ukraine', as noted by Dmytro Kuleba," the statement reads.

Kuleba noted Ukraine's commitment to political and diplomatic ways of resolving the Russian-Ukrainian armed conflict and welcomed the active involvement of the USA in diplomatic efforts for de-escalation and peaceful settlement.

The minister shared his vision of ways to effectively implement the Minsk agreements, in particular Russia's steps in the security and humanitarian spheres that could reduce tensions and unblock the peace process.

Germany

Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba has had his first telephone conversation with the newly appointed German Federal Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock.

According to the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry's press service, Kuleba briefed his German counterpart on the current security situation along the state border and in the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine and reiterated our state's commitment to a political and diplomatic settlement of the Russian-Ukrainian armed conflict.

He noted that Ukraine actively supports the effective work of the Normandy format as an important platform for negotiations. He thanked Germany which together with France is making efforts to bring Russia back to the negotiating table.

Envoy appointments

President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has appointed a number of Ukraine's appointments today: Volodymyr Tolkach to Serbia instead of Oleksandr Aleksandrovych, Maksym Kononenko to the Netherlands, Oleksandr Haman to Vietnam, ambassador to Italy Yaroslav Melnyk to Malta, ambassador to Singapore Kateryna Zelenko to Brunei Darussalam.

Coronavirus

The National Security and Defence Council forecasts that the epidemic situation in Ukraine over the New Year holidays should be stable, but a new strain of the omicron coronavirus may appear as early as this week, Secretary Oleksiy Danilov said during a conference call chaired by President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

Survey: Hungary

More than 40% of Ukrainians believe that Hungary's policy in Transcarpathian Region looks like preparations for occupying the region, according to a survey by the Ilko Kucheriv Democratic Initiatives Foundation and the Kyiv International Institute of Sociology commissioned by the Central European Strategy Institute as part of the Re:Open Zakarpattia special project.

Respondents were asked what they think about the current Hungarian policy towards the Hungarian national minority in Transcarpathian Region such as funding of schools, teachers, grants to entrepreneurs and the like.

Some 41.4% of survey participants described such actions as preparation for a possible annexation of these territories to Hungary. Only 19.9% consider it as friendly assistance to the Hungarian minority in Transcarpathian Region, while 18.4% consider it assistance to the development of the region on conditions of Ukraine. One in five respondents found it difficult to answer this question.

Presidential poll

Incumbent Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy retains the greatest support among Ukrainians, with 27.1% of those who have made up their minds being ready to vote for him, according to a poll conducted by the Kyiv International Institute of Sociology on 3-11 December.

The leader of the European Solidarity Party, Petro Poroshenko, comes second with 19.7%, while Fatherland leader Yuliya Tymoshenko is in the third place with 11.3%.

A pro-Russian politician and representative of Opposition Platform-For Life, Yuriy Boyko, who has long been among the main potential runoff contenders in the presidential election, has lost his rating and already has less support than Ihor Smeshko. Yevhen Muraev and Dmytro Razumkov have roughly the same rating as Boyko.

Parliamentary poll

If elections to parliament were held in the nearest future, the European Solidarity or Servant of the People parties, whose ratings are approximately at the same level, could win, according to a poll conducted by the Kyiv International Institute of Sociology on 3-11 December.

The European Solidarity party is supported by 19.8% of respondents (among those who will vote and have made up their mind) while the People's Servant has 18.4%.

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