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New conflicts in 2022: the main risks for Russia are named

Expert: we are not allowed to relax literally for a single day

What conflicts are possible in the world in the coming year? What threats do they pose to Russia? How to respond to them? President of the Russian section of the International Police Association, Lieutenant-General, Doctor of Law, Professor, Honored Lawyer of Russia Yuri Zhdanov analyzed the risks that our country may face.

Photo: kremlin.ru

– I propose to first look at the conflicts that the Americans attach importance to. In my opinion, it will be clearer comparison of risk assessments by them and us. It is known that the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) – a private American organization in the field of international relations – published the next, fourteenth, annual Preventive Priorities Survey, dedicated to the likelihood and impact of thirty potential conflicts that may arise or intensify during this year. The compilers interviewed American foreign policy experts, asking them to assess the likelihood and impact on American interests of these thirty conflicts, a list of which was compiled back in October 2021 using social networks. In November, the questionnaire was sent to more than 11,300 government officials, foreign policy experts and academics.

– No, only about 400 sent the completed questionnaire to the authors.

– Conflicts were divided into three groups according to their impact on US interests (high, moderate, low) and likelihood (high, moderate, low). True, the groups themselves were formed according to some arbitrary and even strange logic.

For example, the worsening humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan, the growing level of unrest and instability in Haiti, the military conflict between Iran and Israel over Tehran's nuclear program, the escalation of clashes in eastern Ukraine, or large-scale military operations in contested areas have somehow fallen into one group. Here are Taiwan and China, and Mexico, and Lebanon, and Venezuela. And the same hodgepodge in the other groups, which brought together three dozen conflicts of various colors. Again, it is not clear why exactly three tens, and not two or, say, five.

“None of the potential and actual conflicts was rated this year as both highly probable and having a high impact on American interests. The most likely event, according to experts, is a humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan.

– In the first place of them, of course, we put the conflict in Ukraine. It is around him that a particularly fierce debate is being waged. But one gets the impression that many political forces in the United States are simply eager for a military development of the conflict. Thus, on January 10, a group of Republican congressmen announced that they intended to introduce a bill declaring Ukraine a NATO-plus country and initiating a review of the advisability of declaring Russia a state sponsor of terrorism.

“Diplomacy has little chance of success unless it is approached from a position of strength,” said Michael McCall, a leading Republican on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, who is the bill's main sponsor. “Vladimir Putin should take note that Congress will not tolerate the restoration of a Russian sphere of influence and will not allow Ukraine and our other allies and partners in Central and Eastern Europe to be abandoned,” he added.

“The bill will provide Ukraine with the military and diplomatic support it needs in the face of an alleged Russian military buildup along its borders. The bill also designates Ukraine as a “NATO-plus” country to provide expedited consideration for the sale of certain US defense goods and services. As Congressman Rogers said, “This bill will significantly increase funding for the supply of lethal aid to Ukraine, in particular anti-aircraft and anti-ship weapons, which the Ukrainians need to contain Russia. He also makes it clear that Putin's demands, such as a veto on countries joining NATO and a moratorium on the deployment of medium-range missiles in Europe, are unacceptable and contrary to US national security interests.

In addition, the bill provides for the allocation of $155 million to combat “Russian disinformation” and information operations in the countries of the former USSR for 2022. That is, the information war against Russia.

– The second place is occupied by the conflict in Afghanistan. The recent rebellion in Kazakhstan showed the reality and involvement of the Afghan situation in the processes taking place in the post-Soviet space.

The ongoing conflicts over Taiwan and the Iranian nuclear program will also always be among the most significant for Russia. Every year, the danger that they will flare up and involve the whole world in their funnel only increases.

As for the new Karabakh conflict in 2022, here, most likely, the least likelihood. Especially due to the consequences of the events in Kazakhstan.

By the way, the authors of the forecast did not indicate other areas of potential conflicts. After the events in Kazakhstan, the report of the RAND Corporation, made back in 2019, is now often recalled.

Rand Corporation is, in fact, the “thought factory” of the US military-industrial complex. In 2019, the corporation developed a plan to involve the Russian armed forces in conflicts. Their goal is to weaken Russia economically by forcing it to go to excessive spending on the deployment of troops and their use in the next “hot spots”.

Six options for action in this direction have been proposed: arming Ukraine; increased support for jihadists in Syria; regime change in Belarus; maintenance of tension in the South Caucasus; reduction of Russian influence in Central Asia; rivalry with the Russian presence in Transnistria.

So, it has been noticed that the events in Kazakhstan over the past week correspond to the fifth chapter of the RAND Corporation plan. And the sixth chapter of this plan will be implemented in Pridnestrovie. The previous four episodes have already taken place over the past two years in Ukraine, Syria, Belarus and Nagorno-Karabakh. At the same time, the US National Security Council initiated a series of actions against Russia. This is not about overthrowing governments or starting new wars, but about throwing Moscow into conflicts beyond its borders and thereby exhausting it.

– Yes, especially since it borders on Ukraine. The United States, together with the European Union, organized an economic blockade of this unrecognized state, whose population seceded from Moldova in a referendum during the collapse of the USSR. The staff of the European Union Border Assistance Mission to Moldova and Ukraine (EUBAM), led by Stefano Sannino (former OSCE Representative to Serbia), has been monitoring the work of the Moldovan and Ukrainian customs to implement the blockade of this country since January 1, 2022. Although, mind you, Ukraine and Moldova are not members of the EU. Russia is forced to create an air bridge to supply food to the 500,000 inhabitants of this enclave.

– Yes, NATO promises that Georgia will join the North Atlantic Alliance and that a third country will not solve the issue of Georgia's Atlantic integration. According to a report released by the Georgian Foreign Ministry, NATO Deputy Secretary General Mircea Geoane stated this on January 10 in a telephone conversation with Georgian Foreign Minister David Zalkaliani.

Earlier, on January 5, US Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman and Georgian Foreign Minister David Zalkaliani discussed the right of sovereign states to determine their own security mechanisms in a telephone conversation. The State Department said in a statement that the parties discussed the situation in the region and the threat of aggression from Russia. The US Diplomatic Office reports that in a conversation with a Georgian diplomat, Sherman reaffirmed the US's strong support for Georgia's independence, sovereignty, and territorial integrity.

“The Deputy Secretary of State noted that the United States will continue to urge Russia to withdraw its troops to the positions that existed before the war and respect the 2008 ceasefire,” the State Department said in a statement.

However, in parallel with the statements of Western partners about supporting the freedom of choice of Georgia and Ukraine, Russia continues to insist on “reinforced concrete” guarantees that these countries will never be able to join the North Atlantic Alliance. “We emphasize that it is absolutely imperative for us to make sure that Ukraine never becomes a member of NATO. We would like the formula adopted by the Bucharest summit in 2008 to be withdrawn and replaced at the Madrid summit of NATO with the following: “Ukraine and Georgia will never become members of the North Atlantic Alliance.” We are tired of empty talk, we are tired of half-promises, of We don't trust the other side We need concrete, legal guarantees, not promises, but guarantees, with the words “should”, “should”, never become NATO members. the issue of Russia's national security,” Ryabkov told the media after a closed-door meeting that lasted about eight hours.

– Alas, in turn, during the briefing following the talks, Wendy Sherman ruled out such a guarantee for Russia : “We will not allow anyone to close the door to NATO for another country.”

– What to do, this is our usual state.The list of existing, smoldering or still only possible con conflicts does not allow you to relax literally for one day. And the events in Kazakhstan have shown that the post-Soviet space, with the help of our “partners” in negotiations from the United States and NATO, remains a “zone of special attention.”

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The political scientist did not rule out the repetition of the tragic events in Kazakhstan

“In Russia, they no longer understand what is happening in the post-Soviet space”

From the tragic events in Kazakhstan in early January, it is important to draw the right conclusions not only for the leadership of the republic, but also in Russia and the CSTO . Otherwise, relapses are possible. This is the opinion of a political scientist, director of international projects at the Institute of National Strategy Yuri Solozobov.

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One of the options for the further development of events in Kazakhstan, the analyst believes, is – “temporary lull, regrouping of militant forces and a new attack in an unexpected place.” “Since both the social basis for the protest and the criminal-Islamic fronde will be preserved,” says Yuri Solozobov's article, which was published in the National Defense magazine.

In this scenario, in the light of Tokayev's announcement, ” campaign against the oligarchs, help from shadow sponsors will increase, new phases will be required  counter-terrorist operation until “the infrastructure of terror is destroyed and funding channels are cut off.”

“Only every new entry of” peacekeepers on call ” will take place in a more dangerous environment and on much worse conditions,” the expert predicts.

He believes that the direct strengthening of the Russian group in Kazakhstan will also not lead to anything good, since “it will lead to regular attacks on the Russian military and further to the revival of the Basmachi movement.

The political scientist considers the conditionally “imperial” option to be the most optimal course of action. variant – “the planned development of a large area with an initially toxic and even hostile atmosphere.” “We have come to that dangerous frontier, which showed that with one swoop – propaganda, special operations and handshakes – not solve all the accumulated problems,” the political scientist noted.

Yuri Solozobov explained why Kazakhstan – a key element in ensuring strategic security for Russia. With this country, we have the longest common border in the world – more than 7,500 km. The land border is actually open. The destabilization of Kazakhstan immediately gives the militants access to the Trans-Siberian Railway, the Volga region, and oil and gas regions.

Among the main reasons for what happened in Kazakhstan, the political scientist named the following: dual power – Kazakhstan found itself in a situation of a protracted transit of power; poverty – Kazakhstan's abundant petrodollar revenues were distributed extremely unevenly; radicalism – with great social tension and a gap in incomes, a craving for social justice inevitably appears.

The demographic boom has led to the fact that more than half of the population – youth born after the collapse of the USSR. The proportion of marginalized youth is large – natives of the village, where criminal groups and communities of radical Islam thrive.

Taking into account the fact that the CSTO peacekeepers played an important role in stabilizing the situation, the political scientist proposed to increase the number of CSTO peacekeeping forces from 3.6 thousand military personnel to 10 thousand people.

It makes sense, the expert believes, to locate the CSTO Regional Headquarters in Kazakhstan – at the Zhetygen military airfield (formerly Nikolaevka), 50 km northeast of Alma-Ata.

The political scientist proposed developing CSTO ties with Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan.

The main problem in Russia's relations and Kazakhstan, the political scientist called the lack of a clear foreign policy concept in relation to Kazakhstan. “The policy towards the most important partner in the EAEU is often subjective and even sometimes spontaneous, it does not take into account either the real interests of the Russian Federation or the allied interests of the partner countries,” the political scientist concluded.

New footage of the defeated Almaty after the riot in Kazakhstan

See related photo gallery

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Russian Su-35S fighters have begun to relocate to Belarus

Multipurpose fighters Su-35S of the Russian Aerospace Forces have begun to relocate to the territory of Belarus as part of an inspection of the reaction forces of the Union State, TASS reports.

According to the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation, in the course of carrying out flight missions fighter crews will practice flights at maximum range, landing at airfields, as well as joint preparations for re-flights with Belarusian specialists.

It is known that the test of the reaction forces of the Union State will take place in two stages and will last until February 20.

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The practical actions of the troops will be practiced at the airfields of Baranovichi, Luninets, Lida and Machulishchi, as well as at the Domanovsky, Gozhsky, Obuz-Lesnovsky, Brest and Osipovichsky training grounds.

Earlier head of the Russian Defense Ministry Sergei Shoigu also announced the formation of a regiment of MiG-31K fighters with Kinzhal missiles.

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Snow, icy conditions and up to minus four degrees are expected in Moscow on Saturday

Cloudy weather, snow and sleet are expected in Moscow on Saturday, January 22, according to the official website of the Hydrometeorological Center of the Russian Federation.

According to weather forecasts, the air temperature in the capital will be from two to four degrees below zero. On Sunday night, the city can get as cold as minus eight.

On the territory of the Moscow region, it is expected to be from two to seven degrees below zero during the day. At night, the temperature in the region can drop to minus eleven degrees.

The wind is southeast and east at a speed of 5-10 meters per second. Atmospheric pressure will be about 742 millimeters of mercury.

Earlier, the scientific director of the Hydrometeorological Center Roman Vilfand also said that this year the inhabitants of Russia should not wait for the early arrival of spring.

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Durov appreciated the idea of ​​the Central Bank to ban cryptocurrency in Russia

The ban of the Central Bank of Russia on the issuance, mining and circulation of cryptocurrency in the country will entail an outflow of IT specialists from the Russian Federation and the destruction of some sectors of the high-tech economy. This opinion was expressed by Telegram founder Pavel Durov in his messenger channel.

In his opinion, no developed country prohibits cryptocurrencies. Such a ban inevitably slows down the development of blockchain technologies in general, which increase the efficiency and safety of many types of human activity, Durov emphasized. will balance the distribution of forces in the international financial system. Durov believes that a total ban on cryptocurrencies “will hardly stop unscrupulous players, but will put an end to legal Russian projects in this area.”

Recall that on January 20, the Central Bank of Russia proposed mining and circulation of cryptocurrencies. According to the regulator, cryptocurrencies are in many ways similar to financial pyramids.

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WSJ learned about Germany’s refusal to allow Estonia to supply howitzers to Ukraine

WSJ: Germany did not allow Estonia to transfer D-30 howitzers to Ukraine. We are talking about the supply of 122-millimeter guns produced in the Soviet Union and deployed in the former East Germany. After the reunification of Germany, Berlin handed them over to Finland, and the latter handed them over to Estonia =”WSJ learned about the refusal of the Federal Republic of Germany to allow Estonia to supply howitzers to Ukraine” />

Germany refused to issue Estonia a permit for the export of German weapons to Ukraine, The Wall Street Journal writes, citing Estonian and German officials.< /p>

Unlike the United States, Great Britain, Poland and other allies, the German government refused to export deadly weapons to the country directly, the publication points out. Berlin also did not allow Estonia to send artillery to Ukraine because the guns “come from Germany”.

“The principle governing the export of weapons is always the same” regardless of whether it comes directly from Germany or third countries,— and no permission has been issued at this stage,— said a German government official. The Estonian cabinet, in turn, reported that they still expected to convince Germany. “We hope we get German approval,” — said Advisor to the Minister of Defense of the Republic Cristo Ann Vaga, noting that Tallinn wants to help Ukraine in any way possible.

We are talking about the supply of 122-mm D-30 howitzers, the publication clarifies. They were produced in the Soviet Union and stationed in the former East Germany. According to Estonian, Finnish and German officials, after German reunification, Berlin handed over the artillery pieces to Finland in the 1990s, which then sent them to Estonia in 2009.

21 January The Estonian Ministry of Defense reported that the head of the department, Kalle Laanet, and his colleagues from Latvia and Lithuania, Artis Pabriks and Arvydas Anusauskas, agreed with the United States on the supply of weapons to Ukraine. Thus, Estonia will transfer to the country the American Javelin anti-tank missile system, and Latvia and Lithuania— anti-aircraft missile system Stinger.

The head of the Ukrainian Defense Ministry, Alexei Reznikov, told the Financial Times last December that Germany was blocking the shipment of weapons to Kiev through the NATO Procurement and Procurement Agency. Because of this, the country will have to seek arms supplies through bilateral agreements with the United States, Great Britain, Lithuania and France.

As Bild wrote, citing sources, in the summer Angela Merkel, who was then Chancellor of Germany, personally spoke President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky that Berlin will continue to block arms supplies to Kiev through NATO, which it has been doing since spring.

However, by the end of Merkel's term, Germany's position has softened— presumably due to reports from the West about an impending “invasion” by Russia; to Ukraine. In November, Germany did not interfere with the decision to transfer drone detection systems to Kiev.

In addition, Germany refused to supply Ukraine with air defense systems, parts of anti-ship missiles and corvettes.

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US questioned Russia’s ability to shut off gas to Europe

US Ambassador to the UN Thomas-Greenfield does not believe that Russia can cut off gas to Europe US Ambassador to the UN Linda Thomas-Greenfield does not believe that Moscow can take this step in response to sanctions, as this would equally harm her

The US does not believe that Russia can shut off gas to Europe in response to sanctions. This was stated by the American Ambassador to the UN Linda Thomas-Greenfield in an interview with the Rai 1 TV channel, her words are given on the website of the diplomatic mission.

“I believe that this would equally harm Russia, so it would not be in [the country's] interest to cut off the Europeans' access to the gas pipeline,” — she said, when asked if the Joe Biden administration had a plan in place in case diplomatic efforts failed and sanctions had to be imposed, which Russia could respond by cutting off gas supplies.

Bloomberg, in turn, citing sources familiar with this issue, reports that the Joe Biden administration is negotiating with Qatar about the possibility of supplying liquefied natural gas to Europe in the event of “aggression” Russia against Ukraine and sanctions against it. According to two interlocutors, the president plans to invite Emir Tamim bin Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani to visit the United States, possibly as early as late January. As Bloomberg notes, some European countries fear that tough sanctions against Russia, which the West has threatened in the event of an escalation, could hurt their economies and prompt President Vladimir Putin to stop or reduce gas supplies in the winter.

In response to possible aggression against Ukraine, the West threatened Moscow with unprecedented sanctions. CNN, citing sources, reported that the White House is discussing several options for restrictions. Persons from Putin's inner circle, energy companies and banks can fall under them. Sanctions can also be applied against public debt. Among the radical measures were the disconnection of Russia from the international interbank system for transmitting information about payments made SWIFT and limiting the conversion of the ruble.

Democrats and Republicans in the US Congress have already presented their options for restrictive measures against Russia in the event of an “invasion” to Ukraine, they affect, among other things, Putin and his entourage, Russian banks and public debt.

In autumn, gas futures prices in Europe reached record levels. In early October, the price of fuel for the first time in history exceeded $1.9 thousand. Another jump took place in December. Then the exchange price for the first time in history rose above $2,000 per 1,000 cubic meters. m.

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The United States allowed the evacuation of families of embassy employees in Ukraine

CNN learned the deadline for the possible evacuation of the families of the US Embassy diplomats from Ukraine .rbk.ru/v6_top_pics/media/img/5/88/756428439256885.jpg” alt=”The United States allowed the families of embassy employees in Ukraine to be evacuated” />

The US Embassy in Ukraine has asked the State Department to allow non-essential personnel and their families to leave the country. The evacuation could begin as early as next week, CNN correspondents Matthew Chance and Natasha Bertrand report, citing sources familiar with the matter.

will begin evacuating the families of diplomats as early as next week,— the message says.

A State Department spokesman said he had “nothing to announce” at this time, adding that the department was doing thorough contingency planning “as we always do when the security situation worsens.” The representative of the embassy declined to comment to the TV channel.

A source close to the Ukrainian government told CNN that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky discussed a possible evacuation of embassy staff with US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken. According to the interlocutor of the channel, the Ukrainian leader said that if Washington takes such a step, it will be an “overreaction”.

The day before, Bloomberg, citing sources, also wrote that the United States are considering the possibility of evacuating diplomats from Ukraine due to the situation around the alleged “Russian invasion”.

According to the plan, family members of diplomats can be taken out on a mandatory basis, and non-essential embassy staff will be able to leave at will. According to the agency, an official announcement about the beginning of the evacuation could be published within a few days.

In total, about 180 US citizens and 560 hired Ukrainian citizens work at the US embassy in Ukraine. This number does not include family members of US diplomats.

An interlocutor of the agency from among EU diplomats said that European countries also developed a plan for the evacuation of embassies in Ukraine in case of emergency, but so far no measures have been taken. The Express edition wrote that the British special service SAS received an order to be ready to take out diplomats at any time.

Earlier, on January 18, The New York Times, citing a source in the SBU, wrote that Russia is also preparing the evacuation of diplomats from the country. According to the source, staff at two Russian consulates were instructed to prepare for the departure. Moreover, in early January, 18 people had already left Ukraine, including the children and wives of Russian diplomats, the newspaper reported.

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said the same day that Russia had prepared to evacuate the families of diplomats from Ukraine at the end of December— early January.

The Russian Foreign Ministry denied this information, calling these statements a provocation, and announced the regular work of the diplomatic mission in Kiev.

Reports of a possible evacuation of embassies in Ukraine appear against the backdrop of accusations from West in preparation for the “Russian invasion” to Ukrainian territory. Moscow has repeatedly denied these accusations.

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Experts called the main shortcomings of the project on remote voting

The draft requires conceptual refinement, as it does not provide guarantees for the openness of lists and monitoring procedures, experts point out. The CEC insists on a “framework” approach: overregulation will not allow the development of systems alt=”Experts named the main shortcomings of the project on remote voting” />

The bill on uniform rules for remote electronic voting (DEG) lays the foundation for the implementation and use of DEG systems that are non-transparent and inaccessible to inspections, is indicated in the response to the initiative, which was sent to the State Duma on January 21 (available to RBC). The review was written by a group of experts, including electoral expert Grigory Melkonyants, head of the electronic voting systems department of the Moscow State Technical University. N.E. Bauman Viktor Tolstoguzov, member of the public audit group DEG Alexander Isavnin, Petr Zhizhin, Maxim Gongalsky and others.

In mid-December, a bill on unified DEG rules was submitted to the State Duma. It is designed to unify the rules and procedures for holding elections at different levels both in Russia as a whole and in individual regions, the authors explained— deputies from “United Russia” Dmitry Lameikin and Dmitry Vyatkin. They proposed to separate online voting into a separate article in the Federal Law “On Basic Guarantees of Electoral Rights and the Right to Participate in a Referendum of Citizens of the Russian Federation”. The bill allows regional election commissions (in agreement with the CEC) to decide on holding a DEG in local elections, including on their own online voting system.

Experts list the following, in their opinion, shortcomings of the bill.

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  • There are no guarantees of legal certainty and a stable voting system— the document does not describe the deadlines for submitting an application for voting, the procedure for authentication, establishing results, etc.
  • There are no guarantees for members of election commissions on the conduct and control of the DEG— the list of specialists involved in the operation of the DEG system should also be made public.
  • Surveillance system is not regulated.
  • Vulnerability of suffrage in case of failures.
  • No guarantee of control counting of votes— the procedure should be reproducible in court in case of disputes.
  • Possibility of ambiguous interpretation of the law by election commissions.

Possible amendments to the text of the bill were also discussed during public hearings on the draft in the Public Chamber on January 21. The event was attended by representatives of the State Duma, the CEC of Russia and public organizations, members of the RF OP, IT specialists.

During the discussion, the General Secretary of the Direct Democracy Party, Oleg Artamonov, also suggested adding a clause to the bill on the need for technical means of monitoring the DEG and on the access of observers to them. “Electronic voting is not a” black box “, and it is possible to observe it”, & mdash; concluded Artamonov.

Programmer Aleksey Shcherbakov noted that observers should be present during the deployment of the system to check the source code, and spoke in favor of giving observers a day before voting.

CEC position

< p>The bill quite clearly regulates the organization and conduct of the DEG, Nikolai Bulaev, deputy head of the Central Election Commission, said during a hearing in the Public Chamber. «Introduction of amendments to the electoral legislation— this is the next step in understanding what remote e-voting should be— public, understandable, open»,— he noted.

Bulaev added that the federal and Moscow systems of the DEG have been seriously tested in the framework of the work in the elections, and both are considered “capable”. At the same time, they “cannot stop in their development”; and will change, so the law on the DEG should be of a framework nature. “A bill should solve problems, not create them,” — said Bulaev.

The September elections to the State Duma were the first with large-scale use of remote electronic voting. Residents of seven regions could vote online on two systems— federal and Moscow. Online voting, in particular, affected the elections in single-mandate constituencies in Moscow— no opposition candidate won there.

The head of the Communist Party of the Russian Federation Gennady Zyuganov said that the party does not recognize the results of remote electronic voting (DEG) in Moscow. According to the leader of the Communist Party, six candidates from the Communist Party won, but in the morning “they entered [data] and crossed everything out.” The Moscow City Electoral Committee explained the loss of candidates in the last percentage by a large number of online voters. The candidates from the Communist Party tried to challenge the election results in court, but their claims were not satisfied.

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British Foreign Minister arrives in Moscow for talks with Lavrov

The head of the British Foreign Office will arrive in Moscow in February for talks with Lavrov Russia responded positively to the request of the British Foreign Office to hold a meeting of foreign ministers in Moscow. Earlier, the British Minister of Defense invited Russian colleague Sergei Shoigu to come to London

Liz Truss

British Foreign Secretary Liz Truss will visit Moscow in February for talks with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov. This is reported by TASS and RIA Novosti. citing diplomatic sources.

“The head of the British Foreign Office asked for the opportunity to come to Moscow for talks with Lavrov. Moscow agreed to conduct a visit in February,»,— source said.

Earlier, on January 18, British Defense Minister Ben Wallace invited Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu to come to London in the coming weeks to discuss the situation around Ukraine. Prior to that, he said that Russia was demonstrating “threatening behavior” regarding Ukraine, and that London will supply Kiev with light anti-tank defense systems.

In response, Shoigu confirmed his readiness to discuss all pressing security issues, but offered to hold talks in Moscow at any time convenient for Wallace. According to him, the resumption of contacts in the spirit of goodwill between the countries will help reduce tensions in Europe.

In mid-December 2021, the Russian Foreign Ministry sent proposals on security guarantees to the United States and NATO. Among the demands of Moscow was the non-expansion of NATO to the East and the refusal of the countries of the bloc from military activities in Ukraine.

On January 10, 12 and 13, three rounds of talks between the US and Russia, the Russia Council— NATO and Russia and the OSCE. The parties failed to reach an agreement on the key point of the agreements— non-expansion of NATO to the east. The alliance also denied Russia the right to veto Ukraine's entry into the bloc.

The Kremlin considered the result of the negotiations unsuccessful. US President Joe Biden also said that these negotiations did not bring results.

In Geneva, on January 21, Lavrov held talks with the head of the State Department, Anthony Blinken. The Russian minister said that Washington had shared a preliminary oral response to Moscow's proposals for security guarantees and asked a series of questions that would help shape a written response.

According to Lavrov, the United States must provide a written response next week. He had previously urged Blinken to publicly air the US response.

The Washington Post reported that the US asked Russia not to publicize its response to Moscow's security guarantee proposals. “There is one person in Russia who makes decisions, and this person— President Putin»,— a source in the administration told the publication.

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Bloomberg learned about China’s request to Russia not to attack Ukraine

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Chinese leader Xi Jinping could have asked Russian President Vladimir Putin not to invade Ukraine during the Beijing Olympics . According to Bloomberg, the head of China intends to strengthen his authority within the country. But he definitely does not need a crisis in Europe now. The fact is that the outbreak of a conflict during the Olympics may draw Beijing into a diplomatic confrontation.

As a result, the Chinese Foreign Ministry pointed out the importance of observing the traditional UN resolution on a truce. It should start a week before the Olympics and end a week after the Paralympics.

The Beijing Olympics will start on February 4th and end on February 20th. Then it will be the turn of the Paralympics, which will be held from 4 to 13 March. Meanwhile, Chinese President Xi Jinping invited Vladimir Putin to the opening ceremony of the Games in Beijing. The Russian leader plans to attend the event.

Kyiv and Western states have recently been concerned about the alleged increase in “aggressive actions”; from Russia near the borders of Ukraine. Moscow has denied these accusations many times. The Russian authorities point out that the talk about the “aggression of the Russian Federation” used as an excuse to deploy more NATO military hardware near the country's borders.

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Boris Yeltsin’s former personal photographer dies

Photo: Mikhail Kovalev

The former personal photographer of the first Russian President Boris Yeltsin, Dmitry Donskoy, died in Moscow. He was 85 years old. According to his relatives, he died after an illness.

At first, Donskoy was called one of the best sports photojournalists in the country. And he worked as Yeltsin's personal photographer from 1991 to 1997. He was even called a member of the president's family. He filmed both the work of Boris Nikolaevich and his family in an informal setting.

In addition, Donskoy was the winner of more than 160 international awards. Among them is the International Master of Press Photo of the International Union of Journalists. He was also the recipient of the prestigious World Press Photo Goldeneye Award.

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General of the Armed Forces of Ukraine revealed the scenario for the rapid accession of Ukraine to the Russian Federation

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Russia is capable of quickly annexing Ukraine, claims Former First Deputy Commander of the Special Operations Forces, General of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Sergey Krivonos. On the air of the Ukrlife.TV channel, he revealed the scenario of such “attachment”.

According to the Ukrainian general, the Russians will be able to carry out an airborne assault using five to seven airfields within a radius of less than 50 kilometers from Kiev. The airfield at the Antonov plant and the Zhuliany airfield will also help them.

At the first stage, a train of helicopters bypasses the reconnaissance zone of the Kiev air defense. He will leave the fighters of the Ukrainian Air Force at low altitudes, and then establish control over the runways. Then the second stage, when the military transport planes will land at the airports. These actions will allow Russia to quickly take the main city of Ukraine under its control, Kryvonos is sure.

Earlier, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmitry Kuleba spoke harshly about the latest statements from official Berlin. According to him, they are disappointing and go against the support they have provided. As a result, the minister noted that the German partners of Kiev should stop with such words and actions “undermine the unity and encourage Vladimir Putin to a new attack on Ukraine.”

Kiev and Western countries have recently been concerned about the alleged strengthening ” aggressive actions” from the Russian Federation near the borders of Ukraine. Moscow has denied these accusations many times. The Russian authorities point out that the “Russian aggression” talk is being used as a pretext to deploy more NATO military equipment near the country's borders.

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Kiev politician accused the United States of preparing “hell” in Ukraine

“Provocative US arms shipments will do the trick”

The US and some NATO countries are benefiting from the anti-Russian information campaign they themselves started. Without waiting for Russia's announced attack on Ukraine, Western countries began massive deliveries of various lethal weapons to Kiev. Not everyone in Ukraine is happy about this help.

As a matter of fact, there is no unanimity in the issues of supplying arms to Ukraine to NATO. For example, Germany not only does not supply it to Kiev itself, but also prohibits Estonia from supplying Ukrainians with artillery weapons produced in the FRG. The maximum that Germany is going for, as German Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht told the Welt am Sonntag weekly, is the transfer of a field hospital to Ukraine for 5.3 million euros.

It would also be nice to send a batch of qualified psychiatrists from Germany for the Ukrainian top military-political leadership, as well as the leadership of the German allies in NATO. For example, to Estonia, which was one of the first to promise to transfer Javelin anti-tank missiles to Ukraine, where a civil war is going on.

Estonia received these systems from the United States. Approximately 350 missiles. And Washington, unlike Berlin, allowed the transfer of javelins to Ukraine.

Lithuania and Latvia received the same permission regarding the American Stinger man-portable anti-aircraft systems, known since the Afghan war of the 80s. In total, the Balts have about 500 “stingers”.

The US is setting an example for the satellites by pumping lethal weapons into Ukraine. Great Britain is not far behind, which is always happy to spoil. London sent a dozen transport aircraft with light anti-tank systems.

Of course, the supplies are considerable. But, to be honest, they cannot be compared with the arsenals that the United States has transferred to the Afghan army in 20 years. Where most of these weapons are now is known: at the disposal of the Taliban (banned in the Russian Federation). It's time for the Americans to think. But no.

The well-known Ukrainian politician Ilya Kieva wrote on this subject in his Telegram channel as follows: “A new batch of lethal weapons from America arrived in Ukraine tonight. The West is preparing its diplomatic missions for evacuation and at the same time filling the country with weapons so that we can kill each other more effectively. This weapon will not solve the issue of strengthening the defense capability, but as a provocation and irritant, it will do its job.”

According to him, “the Anglo-Saxons systematically pit us, fraternal Slavic peoples, into a bloody war.”

< p>“Neither an American soldier nor an English commando will die in Ukraine, they have given this mission to us and our children. And the more we Slavs send each other to the other world, the better it will be for them, – Kiva writes bitterly. – Such a strategy and policy of the authorities can result in tens or even hundreds of thousands of victims among the civilian population. The country will split, which will serve as the final loss of statehood.

He concludes with a post-rhetorical question: “Hell is being prepared on our land and we Ukrainians will burn alive in it. Look into the eyes of your child and ask yourself the question: why is the puppet power of our children sentenced to death? heart of the Russian world, to slow down the development of the Russian Federation endlessly by Ukraine, through its tsereush puppets in the Ukrainian government, only the total destruction of the Kiev thieves' junta will save Ukraine and Russia from the horrors of war, ”wrote Dmitry.

Alexander Romanov agrees with him: “Playing the Slavic peoples against each other (and not only the Slavic peoples) is the old and proven policy of the Anglo-Saxon imperialists! “Divide and rule!” – this is their motto, under which they have been killing and robbing other countries and peoples for hundreds of years!

“Yes, these creatures themselves are pushing for war, while blaming Russia for everything,” one of the users.

By all accounts, the coming weeks will show how close it is to the truth.

Источник www.mk.ru

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Zelensky continues to believe 20 percent of the population: “Russians will be in Kharkiv”

“Instead of supporting him, they tear him to pieces”

There will be Russians in Kharkiv, and barbecues in May! There is a new scandal around the President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky – within two days he sent two mutually exclusive messages to the Ukrainians: first he recorded a video message urging them not to panic and think no more about a possible war with Russia, but about barbecue in May, and then gave an interview to the Washington Post ”, where he announced the imminent possible capture of the city of Kharkov by the Russian army.

As a result, Kharkiv is in shock, and in In Kiev, for the first time, people began to think about the evacuation of children “in which case”, but at the same time, no one has yet stormed banks and bought buckwheat in the markets.

“I was not at all disappointed in Zelensky – the one who does nothing is not mistaken, and the rating of our presidents always went down by the middle of the term. – calmly says “MK” a former government official from the time of Poroshenko. – You don't understand, he was just addressing different audiences! One, ours, had to be reassured, and from the other, the American, it was urgent to get weapons – he did everything right. He says there: “Russia can take Kharkov and give us weapons,” but here guys, we have been at war for the eighth year, the army will defend itself, but you will still have barbecue in May. I regret that he didn’t say this before, otherwise I hadn’t slept well for a couple of nights at that time, now I’ve calmed down.”

In Kiev, it is really a little restless – on Friday, for example, schools were massively “mined”, where festive events on the eve of the Day of Unity were thus disrupted. On January 22, Ukraine marks the anniversary of the signing in 1919 of the Act of Unification of the Ukrainian People's Republic and the West Ukrainian People's Republic – pieces of the just crumbling Russian and Austro-Hungarian empires. Prior to that, telephone terrorists “mined” three or four metro stations and large shopping centers every day. In one week of January, the country was visited by the director of the CIA, the US Secretary of State and the German Foreign Minister without any plans, and on TV there was mainly news about urgent free deliveries of weapons and a scandal with another failure of the authorities – an unsuccessful attempt to imprison ex-president Petro Poroshenko .

At the same time, political observers are looking forward to the February ratings – how much will Zelensky's support fall against this background?

“Do you remember the famous debate at the stadium of Petro Poroshenko and Volodymyr Zelensky? – the current official of the current Zelensky administration calmly tells the MK correspondent. – Then everyone confirmed their delusions, those who were for Poroshenko sincerely believed that he won, all those who are for Zelensky – exactly the opposite. A man believes what he wants to believe! They continue to believe in Zelensky even now.”

The President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky has a difficult period – the Rubicon has been passed, half of his term is already over, and people don’t like him very much anymore – for the former successful actor bathed in adoration, this is a real tragedy. There is a real political and information storm around Ukraine, and its president had a rest for almost a month and was noted for a unique achievement – he wrote down an appeal to the people in the Carpathians while skiing down the mountain. After that, for several days, Kiev journalists were looking for their president in the Seychelles – there was a leak that Elena Zelenskaya was resting on the islands with children, friends and employees of the state security service, but it was not known whether the husband of the first lady went there for a couple of days to rest.

At the same time, Vladimir Zelensky remained in Kiev, in 2021 he did a complete political somersault – he entered the year and ended it with approximately the same rating of just over 20%. With all the setbacks, ups and downs with these numbers of support, he is still the most important contender for victory in the elections if they were held next Sunday.

Zelensky is no longer supported by the oligarchic consensus – on the country's highest-rated TV channels of Rinat Akhmetov since autumn, the brightest opposition speakers have been freely conveying their position to the population. Since autumn, the president's rating has fallen and … has been firmly fixed. Since December, no new scandals have almost had any effect on the level of voter love for their president. Love, it's like that – it doesn't reason. Zelensky is still tightly clung to by his nuclear electorate.

“You see, I just believe him, because of my managerial experience, I understand what insoluble problems he faced, and instead of supporting him, they tear him apart, find fault with his words, they don’t like mackerel for 8 hryvnias. – a respected doctor who moved to Kiev from Donetsk says hotly to MK. – They, like small “pigs” at school, cling to him for every reason. Everything that happens with criticism of Zelensky reminds me of what happened with Klitschko – he may not be an ancient Roman tribune, but he is a normal person, and he was represented as an idiot for every word. Everything that is happening now in relation to the President of Ukraine is not constructive.”

The story about mackerel for 8 hryvnias happened before the New Year: under the patronage of Elena Zelenskaya, school meals are being reformed in Ukraine, and they are trying to explain its essence in different ways. The president's wife was shown at home in a culinary program, where she talked about her favorite mackerel recipes, for example, which she now buys in stores herself and even remembers the price – 8 hryvnia (23 rubles). Mackerel in Ukrainian stores now costs about 20 times more, the PR people of the President's Office urgently threw in the idea that the first lady had in mind the price per 100 grams, but the damage had already been done – the outcry on social networks really was incredible.

< p>But Vitaliy Klitschko was very insultingly represented by Vladimir Zelensky as a stupid person for many years in a row in the numbers of his humorous show, the mayor of Kiev and the president of Ukraine still have a strained relationship on this basis. But it is useless to remind Zelensky's sympathizers about this – they simply believe in him, regardless of any arguments, earlier in Ukraine this was the voter of Yulia Tymoshenko, who at the peak of political support even had such a slogan: “Vote with your heart!”.

“Zelensky absolutely wonderfully describes the situation, all his speeches are understandable and intelligible. – explains “MK” supporter of the current president, who works in a Kiev taxi. – In fact, a lot has been done, but there are always opponents and they will always criticize. And it's not all that fast – “plant three friends” in Singapore also probably did not happen right away. Probably, it was a long work, some law enforcement agencies lined up, then they planted, started shooting – years passed. And in history it is preserved later so that it seems that he came – and immediately won!

Surprising as it may seem, supporters of Volodymyr Zelensky can also be found in Donetsk.

“He really didn’t bring the promised peace, but it doesn’t just happen. – says “MK” the administrator of the restaurant Maria. – He said at the very beginning that each of us is a president. This means that each of all our “presidents” must work for peace, each one does not complete it, we have discord in our country – opinions are completely different. We still believe in him and respect him, because he is the president.”

The phenomenon of maintaining the rating of Vladimir Zelensky over time will still be studied by sociologists and historians. All Ukrainian presidents, as a rule, under the weight of criticism, lost popular support much faster and more abruptly than the current sixth elected leader of the country.

But his “Teflonism” does not apply to his party at all – the first January measurements of public opinion gave an amazing result. On January 20, the results of their poll were published by the Ukrainian research company Gradus Research, and according to them, for the first time, Petro Poroshenko's European Solidarity party came out on top in the ratings without any allowance for sociological errors – it has already outstripped the Servants of the People by a solid 4%.< /p>

With these Ukrainian party ratings, everything is also interesting. Before the New Year, there were many different measurements, their latest result was the appearance in the polling tables of two new, as yet non-existing party projects – potential parties of the ex-Speaker of the Verkhovna Rada Dmitry Razumkov and actor, volunteer and patriot Serhiy Prytula. Prytula is a well-known Ukrainian TV presenter, ex-resident of the Ukrainian version of the Comedy Club, a volunteer who, in particular, has been supplying drones to the Ukrainian army since 2014, and he also recently took part as a candidate in the election of the mayor of Kiev. So in the capital, his rating went over 7%, and in the whole country it goes over 3% – these are quite “parliamentary” starting figures, and Serhiy Prytula has already announced plans to build his party. MK sources say, focus groups show that Serhiy Prytula is not taking votes from Petro Poroshenko at all. People who were disappointed in Volodymyr Zelensky suddenly turned out to be ready to vote for Serhiy Prytula. The idea that a good, cheerful and handsome guy, not a professional manager, but just a comedian, can come to power is still alive among Ukrainian voters.

Even among those dissatisfied with the results of Volodymyr Zelensky's activities.< /p>

Источник www.mk.ru