Later day news.....
Ukraine urges Right Sector to vacate its Kiev HQ after downtown shootout injures 3
Published time: March 31, 2014 23:58
Ukraine’s acting interior minister urged the far-right group Right Sector to vacate its HQ in Kiev after a downtown shootout instigated by one of its members injured three, including deputy mayor Bogdan Dubas.
Kiev’s ‘Dnepr’ hotel, which serves as headquarters for the Right Sector movement, has been surrounded by police after members of the group retreated there following a shootout in the center of Ukraine’s capital, not far from the landmark Maidan (Independence Square).
Earlier, a Right Sector member opened fire by the ‘Mafia’ restaurant on the Kreschatyk Street, Interior Minister Arsen Avakov stated on his Facebook page. All of the injured have been transferred to hospital, two of them sustained serious wounds. The suspect has been detained.
Kiev city administration confirmed that deputy mayor Dubas was injured, adding that he just happened to be passing by in the area at the moment of the shootout. The other injured were members of Maidan self-defense force.
Police have been negotiating with the Right Sector at the hotel, urging the members to put down their arms and vacate the premises. Avakov called on members to leave the hotel by morning.
The gunman and a group of his supporters stormed the restaurant and barricaded themselves in one of the rooms. Radicals refused to surrender the attacker.
Before the arrival of the police, heavily armed men from the Right Sector drove up to the restaurant and provided the shooter with passage out of the place and escorted him to the hotel ‘Dnepr,’ Avakov said.
Earlier, Avakov stated that he was intimidated by the Right Sector with revenge threats. Over 1,500 nationalists from the Right Sector circled the Ukrainian parliament in Kiev threatening to storm it on Thursday if Avakov did not resign.
Avakov stated that he will pursue justice even if it means facing resignation in the future, adding that he will continue the fight.
The Right Sector movement first emerged at the end of November 2013 supporting pro-EU protests on Kiev's Independence Square (Maidan). The movement is headed by Dmitry Yarosh. In March the ultra-nationalist movement decided to become a political party, nominating Yarosh for president.
Russia put Yarosh on an international wanted list and charged him with inciting terrorism after he urged Chechen terrorist leader Doku Umarov to launch attacks on Russia over the Ukrainian conflict. The far-right leader has also threatened to destroy Russian pipelines on Ukrainian territory.
Yarosh has also demanded Avakov's resignation of and the arrest of security officers after a police raid against the gang of notorious radical militant Aleksandr Muzychko resulted in his death.
Right Sector fighters were also active in the violence which triggered the ouster of President Viktor Yanukovich. The group’s fighters used clubs, petrol bombs and firearms against Ukrainian police and have been seen wearing neo-fascist insignia.
Nigel Farage: Europe Has "Blood On Its Hands" Over Ukraine
Submitted by Tyler Durden on 03/31/2014 20:06 -0400
"We should hang our heads in shame,"UKIP's Nigel Farage blasted during last week's debate with Britain's Deputy PM Nick Clegg, adding that it was the British government that had encouraged the EU to pursue "imperialist, expansionist" ambitions in Ukraine. Clegg's comments on how the EU had turned "fascist dictatorships" in eastern Europe into democracies were met with derision from Farage who exclaimed, "we’ve given a false series of hopes to a group of people in western Ukraine and so geed up were they that they, actually, toppled their own elected leader."
When the debate touched upon events in Ukraine, Clegg said that he was proud of the EU for reaching out to ex-Communist states in Eastern Europe and former “fascist dictatorships” on the Mediterranean.Those states only managed to turn into “democracies because they became part of the family of nations within the EU,” Clegg said.But Farage responded with a completely opposite stance toward the armed coup that ousted Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovich in late February.“We should hang our heads in shame,” Farage said, adding that it was the British government that had encouraged the EU to pursue “imperialist, expansionist” ambitions in Ukraine."We’ve given a false series of hopes to a group of people in western Ukraine and so geed up were they that they, actually, toppled their own elected leader," he said.With over 100 people killed during the Maidan standoff in Kiev, the European Union “does have blood on its hands” over Ukraine, Farage said.“I don’t want a European army, navy, air force or a European foreign policy. It has not been a thing for good in the Ukraine,” he said.
Farage won the debate; but...
The deputy PM accepted defeat as he appeared on LBC’s weekly phone-in Friday morning, but hurried to make up for it by attacking Farage over his remarks on Ukraine.
Clegg said he was “extraordinarily surprised, if not shocked” to hear the claim that the EU was responsible for the bloodshed in Ukraine.
“To suggest that somehow it is the EU's fault that the Ukrainian people rose up, as many did on the streets of Kiev, against their government seeking to claim greater democracy, greater freedom, is such a perverse way of looking at things,” he said.
Clegg said the UKIP leader’s words showed “quite how extreme people can be… when their loathing of the EU becomes so all-consuming that they even end up siding with Vladimir Putin in order to make their point.”
Clegg promised that he would raise Ukraine again in his second televised debate with Farage, due to take place next week.
We look forward to Nigel Farage's rebuttal to the status quo vigilantism once again...
Russian Platoon Withdrawing From Ukrainian Border, Russian Defense Ministry Says
Submitted by Tyler Durden on 03/31/2014 10:22 -0400
Overnight, AFP reported that Russian forces have begun a gradual withdrawal from the Ukrainian border, citing a Russian defense ministry official. "In recent days, the Russian forces have been gradually withdrawing from the border," the Ukrainian defence ministry's general staff spokesman Oleksiy Dmytrashkivskiy said in a telephone interview. Moments ago, Reuters confirmed this story:
- RUSSIAN DEFENCE MINISTRY SAYS ONE INFANTRY BATTALION IS WITHDRAWING FROM REGION NEAR UKRAINIAN BORDER - RUSSIAN STATE NEWS AGENCIES
And Bloomberg added:
- RUSSIA: PLATOON HEADING BACK TO SAMARA REGION FROM ROSTOV: RIA
- RUSSIAN PLATOON RELOCATING AFTER DRILL IN ROSTOV REGION: RIA
So is Putin de-escalating, and now merely biding his time until the Ukraine elections when the population, suddenly facing 100% price increases in heating costs, capital controls, and a collapsed economy will have to empower the current government to continue the status quo? Or just another headfake to show that even Putin is malleable to "negotiations"? Or, as the official explanation says, it was merely the end of a drill, and the platoon will now be stationed elsewhere along the border?
Stay tuned to find out.
Morning news / Overnight entries.......