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Homeআন্তর্জাতিকRussia to suspend gas supplies to EU

Russia to suspend gas supplies to EU

Russia to suspend gas supplies to EU

 

Dhaka July 02 2022 :

 

Inside Russia : Outside Russia : News Digest by the Embassy of Russian Federation in Bangladesh on July 02 2022.

 

INSIDE RUSSIA

Putin discusses global food market situation with Modi — Kremlin

MOSCOW, July 1. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin in a telephone conversation with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday talked about actions of several countries that led to global food problems.

“Putin drew attention to the systemic mistakes made by a number of countries, which led to the disruption of free trade in food products and provoked a significant increase in their price. Unlawful sanctions against Russia have exacerbated an already difficult situation,” the Kremlin press service said.

At the same time, the Russian president stressed that Russia remains a reliable producer and supplier of grain, fertilizers, and energy. “Vladimir Putin stressed that Russia has been and remains a reliable producer and supplier of grain, fertilizers, and energy carriers, including to Indian partners,” the statement said.

The leaders agreed to continue personal contacts, as well as interaction at other levels, the press service noted.

 

Putin’s proposal to hold UN Security Council’s permanent members summit valid — Lavrov

MINSK, July 1. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin’s proposal to convene a summit of the permanent members of the UN Security Council is still on the table, and Moscow hopes this initiative will materialize as soon as the West “regains its senses,” Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Friday.

“Back before the pandemic, <…> [Russian] President [Vladimir] Putin proposed holding a summit of the permanent members of the UN Security Council so that an honest discussion be held on how to run things globally for the world to be equal and just, with UN Charter provisions put to life,” Russia’s top diplomat said at meeting with Belarusian State University students and teaching staff.

“The invitation – the proposal – is still on the table,” Lavrov added. “I hope we will be able to return to it as soon as the West regains its senses,” he remarked.

Commenting on a potential expansion of the UN Security Council, the Russian foreign minister said that such an expansion was needed and that the process had been “underway for several decades now.”

“Someone has proposed adding permanent members, while others have insisted that non-permanent ones be added, but the fact is that emerging markets are catastrophically underrepresented,” Lavrov emphasized. He described as disproportionate the presence of six Western nations in the 15-member UN Security Council.

“We have spoken in favor of India and Brazil [as members], and in this light we support the representation of Africa,” he said.

Lavrov slammed the West’s behind-the-scene political maneuvers on international arena which he said seriously undermined a key principle of the UN Charter. Western ambassadors and emissaries “have been literally running across the globe demanding that any countries, be it small or large, join their anti-Russian sanctions,” he said.

“If they [Western countries] make ultimatums to the likes of India, Egypt and Turkey, then this brazen attitude goes beyond reason here, I am afraid,” the Russian foreign minister concluded.

 

Putin orders a huge Far Eastern oil and gas project be re-organised: Is Russia kicking the West out of key energy deals?

The Kremlin has decided that ownership of the LNG operation should be changed to a new domestic entity

President Vladimir Putin has signed a decree to transfer the rights of the giant Sakhalin-2 oil and liquefied natural gas project to a new Russian company. The move comes in response to actions from “unfriendly states” and could force out foreign stakeholders, including British and Japanese investors.

What is Sakhalin-2?

It is one of the world’s largest LNG projects with an annual output of 12 million tons. The joint venture between Russia’s Gazprom, Japan’s Mitsui and Mitsubishi and UK-based Shell was launched in 2009. The facility is located on the Russian island of Sakhalin in the Pacific Ocean, north of Japan. It supplies LNG mainly to markets in Asia.

Who are the stakeholders in the project?

Sakhalin-2 was managed and operated by the Sakhalin Energy Investment Company. The majority stake (50%) plus one share belongs to Saint Petersburg energy giant Gazprom. Shell, the world’s largest LNG trader, holds a 27.5% minus one share stake, Mitsui’s share totals 12.5%, while Mitsubishi has a 10% stake in the project.

What does Putin’s decree say?

The presidential order creates a new Russian firm to take over all the rights and obligations of Sakhalin Energy Investment. Gazprom will retain its stake while the other partners have one month to indicate whether they want a share in the new company. If permission is denied by the Russian government, the stakes would be divested and the proceeds from the sale would be moved to a special account. The money could then be used to repay unspecified damages or be sent to the shareholder under the production sharing agreement, according to the decree. Those who chose to exit may not be fully compensated.

Is Russia nationalizing the project?

The change of ownership of Sakhalin-2 cannot be considered nationalization, according to Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov. When asked by reporters on Friday whether other energy projects would follow, Peskov replied that each situation will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

How have foreign stakeholders reacted?

Shell said on Friday that the company was aware of the decree and was “assessing its implications.” The firm made clear its intention to quit the project months ago and has been in talks with potential buyers, including from China and India. Those plans appear to be in jeopardy.

Japan has previously said it would not give up its interests in the Sakhalin-2 project, which is important for its energy security. Moscow earlier accused Japan of benefiting from its participation in the project while being an “unfriendly nation” that joined the West in placing sanctions on Russia. It won’t be easy for Japan to withdraw from the project, experts point out. Replacing Russian LNG from Sakhalin-2 would reportedly cost Tokyo $15 billion, with the price tag for imports jumping 35% if Mitsui and Mitsubishi opt out. But now Russia could make the decision for Japan and redirect its imports to other nations, such as China, India, or Vietnam.

Could the changes hamper LNG supplies?

Moscow sees no grounds for supplies to stop from Sakhalin-2 after the new operator takes over. However, some analysts warn the move may unsettle an already tight LNG market, taking into account that the European Union is adding to increased competition for liquified natural gas amid a global energy crunch. Sakhalin-2 supplies about 4% of the world’s current LNG market.

For more stories on economy & finance visit RT’s business section

 

Russia to suspend gas supplies to EU

Russia’s Nord Stream natural gas pipeline to Germany will shut down for ten days for annual maintenance, the company in charge of the project confirmed on Friday.

Both strings of the pipeline will halt operations for repair works from July 11 to July 21. The operator added that the shutdown was previously agreed with all partners.

“Nord Stream AG will temporarily shut down both lines of its gas pipeline system for routine maintenance works inclusive testing of mechanical elements and automation systems for ensuring reliable, safe, and efficient pipeline operations,” the statement reads.

Germany is concerned over the process, fearing that the flow of gas will not be turned back on, the Financial Times reported last week.

According to the paper, last month’s 60% reduction of gas flow by Gazprom due to a technical issue with parts has added to fears that the supply may be shut down completely. This comes as Western Europe is trying to top up gas reserves ahead of the winter season.

In recent years, the maintenance-related shortfall in supplies via Nord Stream was compensated by increased flows through Ukraine or Poland. However, various officials and industry representatives told the FT they feared that Russia may not do that this time, leaving the continent to face gas shortages.

In response, the German government launched a second ‘alarm’ phase of its three-level gas emergency plan. Berlin has warned it’s facing a severe shortage of the fuel amid diminishing supplies from Russia.

The German government announced earlier that the country had made a “bitter” decision to restart coal-fired power plants in order to cope with a possible energy crisis this coming winter.

Nord Stream AG, which is majority-owned by Gazprom, insists that maintenance information was appropriately disclosed in compliance with the EU Regulation on Wholesale Energy Market Integrity and Transparency.

“The schedule for the maintenance activities has been closely coordinated with Nord Stream’s upstream and downstream partners,” it added.

For more stories on economy & finance visit RT’s business section

 

WWF Russia to release tigers into wild in Kazakhstan, breed leopards in Far East

MOSCOW, July 1. /TASS/. The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) of Russia intends to breed Far Eastern leopards, conserve sea otters and bowhead whales, and release Amur tigers in Kazakhstan in the next five years, the fund’s press service told TASS on the occasion of its 28 years of work in Russia, celebrated on Friday.

“Every five years we approve a new conservation strategy that lays out the priorities and tasks for the coming years. It is important for us to focus our efforts on those areas that will maximize wildlife conservation. As in the past five years, together with our partners we will continue to work on the conservation of rare animal species, including the Amur tiger, the snow leopard, the bison, Persian and Far Eastern leopards, the Saiga Antelope, wild reindeers, polar bears, walruses and others. Now our strategy will include several new species, such as the sea otter and the bowhead whale. One of the new directions is also conservation of fresh water ecosystems,” the press service quoted WWF Russia director Dmitry Gorshkov as saying.

One of the new tasks is conservation of the bowhead whale population of the Okhotomorsk Sea. It is the most southern population in the world and it is very vulnerable: it has no more than 300-400 mammals. By 2027, WWF Russia plans to find out what happens to the whales’ population and where they winter, to preserve their key habitats, and to implement measures to reduce the main threats. Sea otters were also previously not in the fund’s strategy, but their population on the Kuril and Commander islands is decreasing. The exact reasons for this are not yet known. The Fund will contribute to the preservation of the key habitats and organize the monitoring of sea otters together with the locals.

“Over the next five years, WWF, together with the Lazovsky Nature Reserve and its partners, will start restoring the leopard population in the southern Sikhote-Alin. WWF is currently building a reintroduction center for the Amur leopard based in the Lazovsky Nature Reserve. The Amur leopards lived here until the 1980s, and later disappeared due to industrial development. When the center is completed, leopards from zoos will be brought here and their breeding will begin, and then the cubs, previously raised at the center, will be released into the wild. By mid-2027 at least four animals are expected to be released in the Lazovsky Reserve. In the future, a second core population should be formed here. Now all the leopards live in the Land of the Leopard National Park and in the neighboring areas,” the press service added.

Tigers vanished in Kazakhstan more than 70 years ago, and now WWF is working with the Ministry of Ecology, Geology and Natural Resources of Kazakhstan and its partners to restore the animal’s population. Over the next five years, WWF plans to bring the first tigers into the country and release them in the Ile-Balkhash Nature Reserve. Over the next three years, the number of ungulates needs to increase to provide food for the predator.

During the 28 years of its work in Russia, WWF has contributed to the implementation of over 1,500 field projects and supported the establishment and expansion of more than 145 protected areas in Russia. This Russian natural conservation organization unites over 1.5 million supporters across the country.

 

Calling NATO exclusively defensive alliance is ridiculous, disgraceful — Lavrov

MINSK, July 1. /TASS/. Claims to the effect NATO is an exclusively defensive alliance sound ridiculous and disgraceful these days, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said at a meeting with students and teachers at the Belarusian State University on Friday.

“Recently, a representative of the White House once again reiterated that Russia should not be afraid of NATO and that no one should be afraid of it at all, because NATO is a defensive alliance. But it is already ridiculous to hear adults say such obvious nonsense. I would say, it is simply disgraceful,” Lavrov said.

He recalled that when there were two alliances – the Warsaw Treaty and NATO – it was clear “from whom NATO was defending itself. Similarly, the Warsaw Treaty Organization was defending itself from NATO. There was a clear boundary between these two military-political blocs.”

“The Warsaw Treaty Organization and the Soviet Union are no more. NATO has moved eastward five times. They argue they have remained a defensive alliance all the time. Who were they defending themselves from then? When someone pushes forward, establishes control of territories and deploys armed forces and military infrastructure there, it is not exactly what is called defense. It’s just the opposite,” he stressed.

Empty promises

Lavrov also pointed out that the West “has never proved its ability to keep its word.” He recalled the assurances that NATO gave to the Soviet and, later, the Russian leadership to the effect the alliance would not expand eastwards. “Those promises turned out to be lies,” Lavrov stressed.

He also recalled that “at the cost of well-known compromises in the late 1990s the Russia-NATO Founding Act was concluded, in which Moscow took another step towards further concessions.

“Not a word was said there that that NATO would not expand to the East. It was simply stated that on the territory of the newly-adopted NATO member-countries (which in fact was tantamount to the recognition the expansion was taken for granted), there would be no permanent deployment of significant combat forces,” Lavrov continued. “In recent years, NATO ditched this commitment, too. And the latest decisions by the Madrid summit proclaim a colossal increase in the armed forces, weapons and military infrastructure on NATO’s so-called eastern flank,” he stated.

Lavrov also noted that the North Atlantic Alliance had completely ignored another of its fundamental obligations – to ensure the indivisibility of security.

“This formula was approved first at the OSCE summit in Istanbul in 1999. Then it was reproduced in 2010, and not so long ago – at the OSCE summit in Kazakhstan. It reads as follows: each country has the right to choose a way to protect itself and to ensure its security, but at the same time, no country has the right to strengthen its security by harming the security of any other country in our common space. Another element of this formula stipulated that no country, no organization, and no alliance have the right to lay claim to a dominant role in Europe. NATO is doing precisely this,” Lavrov said.

“Firstly, it ignores the security interests of our countries, and secondly, it declares that NATO is generally the pinnacle of political creativity and the world’s best alliance over centuries, which functions to the benefit of all countries and peoples,” he summed up.

 

Russia demands rubles for grain exports

Moscow has expanded the list of commodities that must be paid for in Russian currency

The Russian government has added grain, sunflower oil and extracted meal to the list of exports that must be paid for in rubles. A resolution giving effect to the decision was adopted on Friday and published on the official portal of legal information.

It also provides for a one-year extension of duties to be paid in the national currency in respect of exported sunflower oil and sunflower meal until August 31, 2023.

As part of the new payment mechanism, the base price for calculating the export duty on wheat will be 15,000 rubles (over $267) per ton.

Russia is the world’s largest wheat exporter and a major supplier of sunflower seeds. Russian Minister for Agriculture Dmitry Patrushev said this month that the country would export agricultural products to “friendly countries” only.

According to the minister, Russia’s grain harvest could reach 130 million tons this year, which would be enough to cover both domestic needs and ensure export potential.

 

Putin accuses Ukraine of ‘crimes against humanity’

Russia’s president said Kiev had subjected the people of the Donbass republics to “genocide”

Kiev’s actions against the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics amount to “crimes against humanity” and effectively constituted “genocide” of local population, Russian President Vladimir Putin has said. The president made the remarks on Thursday in his address to participants of the 10th International legal forum in St Petersburg.

“Russia is open to dialogue on ensuring strategic stability, preserving agreements on the non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and improving the situation in arms control,” Putin stated. “We are focused on joining efforts on crucial issues like the climate agenda, fighting famine, providing stability in food and energy markets, and fair rules in international trade and competition,” he added.

Ensuring proper and meticulous international cooperation on various issues could, in the future, help to avoid crises like the one currently unfolding in Ukraine, the president stressed.

With this approach, we could avoid crises such as the current one in Donbass that is happening to protect its residents from genocide – and there can be no other definition for the Kiev regime’s actions than “a crime against humanity.”

Moscow’s “foreign affairs agenda has always been and remains constructive,” Putin said. Russia seeks to develop “multipolar relations” with anyone “interested in them” and places “great value” on cooperation “within the UN, the G20, BRICS, the SCO” and other groups, he added.

Russia sent troops into Ukraine on February 24, citing Kiev’s failure to implement the Minsk agreements, designed to give the regions of Donetsk and Lugansk special status within the Ukrainian state. The protocols, brokered by Germany and France, were first signed in 2014. Former Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has since admitted that Kiev’s main goal was to use the ceasefire to buy time and “create powerful armed forces.”

In February 2022, the Kremlin recognized the Donbass republics as independent states and demanded that Ukraine officially declare itself a neutral country that will never join any Western military bloc. Kiev insists the Russian offensive was completely unprovoked.

Over the course of the conflict, Kiev and Moscow have traded accusations of committing assorted crimes against civilians. Ukraine’s rhetoric has been backed and amplified by the top Western politicians, with US President Joe Biden, for instance, accusing Russia of committing “genocide” in the country. The White House, however, has tried to downplay such remarks, insisting they do not constitute Washington’s official policy. The UN refused to describe the ongoing conflict as such, stating that it had not “documented patterns” that could amount to “genocide.”

 

Vladimir Putin congratulated current staff and veterans of the Foreign Intelligence Service on the centenary of illegal intelligence

Highlights of his speech:

West has found itself trapped, has driven itself into this exact trap and in its own actions proceeds from the idea that there is no alternative to its model of liberal globalism. Essentially, this model is just an updated rendition of neocolonialism and nothing else. It is a world the American way, a world for the chosen where everybody else’s rights are simply trampled upon.

Clear proof of that is the fate of many countries and peoples in the Middle East and other regions in the world – and millions of people in Ukraine today who are being cynically used by the West as expendable material in its geopolitical games, in its attempts to “deter” Russia. Speaking of which, what does it mean, to deter? To prevent us from developing at the right rate and on our own foundation of traditional values. Is it deterrence? It is just a fight against Russia.

Meanwhile, the West is trying to ignore an inconvenient reality, the forming of a multi-polar world order. Obviously, they cannot fully look away from these objective tendencies. But in their practical policy, they are guided by one goal, which is to maintain their dominance by any means.

The dogmatic attitudes of the past and unwillingness to face up to reality is inevitably increasing the risk of premature, impulsive actions on the part of the West in the future. At the same time, this offers new opportunities to Russia and likeminded countries – as you know, there are quite a few of them. It is true that some of them are not eager to speak out, but they are roughly on the same wavelength with us. There are many likeminded countries, peoples and nations that would like to go their own way based on the principles of true multilateralism.

Of course, we need to conduct a separate discussion on a model and vision of the future and an agenda that will not separate but unite humankind. I believe that it is important to dedicate one of my future public addresses to this subject or possibly choose some other format.

I would like to repeat that it is important to see the overall picture against the background of ongoing fundamental transformations and to use this to act proactively.

Constant attention must be given to the situation in the global economy and finance. It is important to study the situation and basic trends in the global markets, to work out the possible consequences of the steps and decisions that bear on the interests of Russia and Russian business, as well as our integration and international projects.

 

Russia quits several Council of Europe agreements

MOSCOW, July 1. /TASS/. Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin has signed a decree to terminate Russia’s participation in a number of agreements within the Council of Europe framework, according to a document published by the official Russian web portal of legislative information.

Starting from March 16, 2022, Russia will withdraw from the Council of Europe International Cooperation Group on Drugs and Addiction (the Pompidou Group), the 1990 Partial Agreement of the Council of Europe establishing the European Commission for Democracy through Law, the open Partial Agreement on cooperation for the prevention of, protection against, and organization of relief in major natural and technological disasters, the Enlarged Partial Agreement on Sport, the Enlarged Partial Agreement on Cultural Routes and the Observatory on History Teaching in Europe.

Moreover, Russia will no longer participate in the work of the Council of Europe’s cultural support fund (Eurimages) and the European Audiovisual Observatory.

Russia joined the Council of Europe 26 years ago. Since 1996, Russian delegates participated in the five main cooperation formats: intergovernmental (Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe, CMCE), inter-parliamentary (Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, PACE), inter-regional (Congress of Local and Regional Authorities), judicial (European Court of Human Rights) and non-governmental (INGOs Conference of the Council of Europe).

Moreover, Russia was represented in the Council of Europe’s International Cooperation Group on Drugs and Addiction (the Pompidou Group), the European Commission for Democracy through Law (the Venice Commission), the Group of States against Corruption (GRECO), as well as in intergovernmental committees and working bodies of the Council of Europe. It joined several dozens of Council of Europe’s acts and agreements.

On March 15, Russia began the process of withdrawing from the Council of Europe. On June 11, laws signed by President Vladimir Putin were published on the non-execution in Russia of any resolutions the ECHR adopted after March 15, 2022 – from the moment Russia filed its statement it was leaving the Council of Europe.

 

OUTSIDE RUSSIA

Kissinger outlines three possible outcomes in Ukraine

Victory for Moscow, a war between Russia and the West, and a return to pre-February 24 lines are all viable scenarios, the veteran US politician believes

Former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, who recently turned 99, has shared his thoughts on how the ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine could end.

“There are three possible outcomes to this war – all three of them are still to some extent open,” Kissinger said in his interview with The Spectator magazine.

The first scenario would be “if Russia stays where it is now, it will have conquered 20% of Ukraine and most of the Donbass, the industrial and agricultural main area, and a strip of land along the Black Sea.”

If this happens it would be “a victory” for Moscow that will also show that “the role of NATO will not have been as decisive as earlier thought,” the veteran politician pointed out.

The second possible outcome “is an attempt is made to drive Russia out of the territory it acquired before this war, including Crimea, and then the issue of a war with Russia itself will arise if the war continues,” Kissinger warned.

 

Kissinger turns 99, declared ‘enemy’ by Ukraine

“The third outcome… is if the Free People can keep Russia from achieving any military conquests and if the battle line returns to the position where the war started, then the current aggression will have been visibly defeated,” he said.

This would see Ukraine rebuilt the way it was before the Russian military operation started on February 24 and rearmed by NATO, “if not [made] part of it,” the former secretary of state suggested.

“The remaining issues could be left to a negotiation. It would be a situation which is frozen for a while,” but the deadlock would be overcome with time, he assured.

According to Kissinger, this “third outcome” is the same that he sketched out during his video-address to the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos in May.

In the speech that made international headlines, he insisted that “negotiations on peace [in Ukraine] need to begin in the next two months,” otherwise the conflict could turn from “a war about the freedom of Ukraine, which had been undertaken with great cohesion by NATO,” into a “war against Russia itself.”

The proposal angered many in Ukraine, with President Volodymyr Zelensky saying that Kissenger “emerges from the deep past and says that a piece of Ukraine should be given to Russia” in order to appease Moscow. He suggested that the former secretary of state forgot that it was 2022 and thought that he was talking to an audience in Munich in 1938.

The latter was a reference to the Munich Agreement, which saw the UK, France and Italy agreeing to cede a part of Czechoslovakia to Nazi Germany in a vain attempt to avoid a major conflict on the continent. World War II started the next year.

Kissenger’s name also appeared on the infamous Mirotvorets (‘Peacemaker’) website, which hosts a publicly searchable database of whom its authors believe to be enemies of Ukraine. He was branded “an accomplice in the crimes of the Russian authorities against Ukraine and its citizens.”

The veteran politician told The Spectator that “the purpose of the Davos statement was to point out that the issue of war aims needed to be faced before the momentum of war made it politically unmanageable.”

As for Zelensky’s criticism, “in his most recent statements he has essentially accepted what I outlined in Davos,” Kissinger insisted.

 

DPR leader discusses coal industry with Kremlin official

DONETSK, July 2. /TASS/. The head of the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR), Denis Pushilin, wrote in his Telegram on Saturday he had discussed the situation in the coal industry with First Deputy Head of the Russian Presidential Administration Sergey Kiriyenko.

Pushilin met with Kiriyenko and DPR Prime Minister Vitaly Khotsenko at the Komsomolets Donbassa coalmine in the city of Kirovsky.

“Issues of coal industry development and coalmine competitiveness were discussed at the meeting, such as feasibility of removing all socially-oriented facilities from the asset list of coalmining enterprises and turning them into municipal property,” Pushilin wrote.

DPR has enough coal despite the ongoing hostilities and blockade, DPR leader said.

“Despite hostilities and blockade, the [coal] industry has survived. The republic has enough coal. It is being delivered to enterprises and power stations, it is used to generate power and provide central heating, thus ensuring our energy security. The industry has a serious export potential,” the official wrote in his telegram channel.

The statement was released in the wake of Pushilin’s meeting with First Deputy Head of the Russian Presidential Administration Sergey Kiriyenko and DPR Prime Minister Vitaly Khotsenko at the Komsomolets Donbassa coalmine in the city of Kirovsky on Friday.

According to Pushilin, among other things, the officials discussed mechanisms of providing certain social groups with coal for their daily living needs.

“The coal industry of Donbass still has vast perspectives, and the state will create all preconditions for its development,” he said.

 

Republika Srpska will not join anti-Russian sanctions despite US, EU pressure — official

BELGRADE, July 2. /TASS/. Republika Srpska (one of the two entities of Bosnia and Herzegovina) will not impose sanctions on Russia despite pressure from the United States and the European Union, a senior official has said.

“We must act in the interests of our people, and we [Republika Srpska] have no opportunity to join the package of sanctions against the Russian Federation, despite expectations heard from the European Union and the United States,” Serb member of the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina Milorad Dodik said on Friday at a joint news conference with Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Peter Szijjarto.

On June 3, the EU Council adopted the sixth package of sanctions against the Russian Federation, including a postponed embargo on maritime supplies of oil and petroleum products from Russia. The ban on sea supplies of oil has been postponed until early December, for oil products – until February 2023. Temporary exemptions from the embargo are provided for imports via oil pipelines for those EU states that, due to their location, are extremely dependent on supplies from Russia and have no alternatives. These are first of all Hungary and Slovakia.

 

Ex-F1 Head Bernie Ecclestone Says He’d ‘Take Bullet’ for Putin, Who Is Doing Right by Russia

Ecclestone reportedly built up a relationship with Putin when they were establishing the Russian Grand Prix, which made its debut in the Black Sea resort of Sochi in 2014. In 2016, Ecclestone was criticised by his fellow Brits for saying Putin was “the guy who should run Europe,” and he has become notorious for making such provocative statements.

Former Formula One chief Bernie Ecclestone called Russian President Vladimir Putin “a first-class person” and declared he would “take a bullet” for him.

In an interview with ITV’s Good Morning Britain on Thursday, the 91-year-old claimed the conflict in Ukraine was not “intentional” and could have been stopped by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. Further, the sports executive suggested that Zelensky speak with Putin, describing the latter as a “sensible” individual.

“I’d still take a bullet for him. I’d rather it didn’t hurt, but if it does I’d still take a bullet, because he’s a first-class person,” Ecclestone said when asked if he still thinks of Putin as a friend. “What he’s doing is something that he believed was the right thing he was doing for Russia. Unfortunately, he’s like a lot of business people, certainly like me, we make mistakes from time to time. When you’ve made the mistake, you have to do the best you can to get out of it.”

‘I’d still take a bullet for him.’

Bernie Ecclestone says Ukrainian President Zelensky should have listened to Putin to avoid war because Putin ‘is a sensible person’. pic.twitter.com/jZ1hLnrYTU

— Good Morning Britain (@GMB) June 30, 2022

Then, he stressed that Zelensky, a former comedian, whom he referred to as “the other person in Ukraine,” seemed like he wanted “to continue that profession, because I think if he’d have thought about things, he would have definitely made a big enough effort to speak to Putin, who is a sensible person and would have listened to him and could have probably done something about it.”

And when the show’s host asked Ecclestone to clarify if he really believes Zelensky bears the burden of responsibility for the events unfolding in Ukraine, and that he could have acted differently to negotiate more with Russia, the former F1 head said: “Absolutely.”

“I’m quite sure Ukraine, if they’d wanted to get out of it properly, could have done,” he said, adding that the current situation was not “intentional” in his opinion.

When asked whether he had the opportunity to speak with Putin about “what a mess” the situation is or if he had pushed him to reconsider the course of action, Ecclestone told the host that he did not think that at all.

“No. He’s probably thought about that himself. He probably doesn’t need reminding,” he replied. “I’m absolutely sure he now wishes he hadn’t started this whole business, but didn’t start as a war.”

He also offered his opinion on the elimination of the Russian Grand Prix and the ban on Russian drivers from the Formula One schedule.

“I’m not in the position now to have done anything about that. I’m not sure I would have stopped that, and I certainly now wouldn’t, and I think it’s wrong, to stop Russian athletes, including, obviously, drivers, in taking part in their sport,” Ecclestone said, stressing: “They didn’t get involved in this in the first place. They shouldn’t be punished.”

While many of the show’s viewers on social media chastised Ecclestone for his opinion, which they deemed totally incorrect, with some even proposing sending the former official to a nursing home, not uncommon for online commentary, some GMB followers wondered what was wrong with the man simply expressing his point of view, which they found to be worthy of attention.

“How dare someone support the other side and suggest that Zelensky is a comedian and that the US love wars because they sell billions $$ in arms. No one wants to hear this, it’s too close to the truth. We must only hear one side. Time to wave the flags again [Ukrainian flag emojis]” wrote one user.

“What has he’s exactly got wrong though? I don’t see it. I’m sure both could have done more to avoid war,” another user asked, prompting opinion wars in the comment section.

Ukraine Crisis is Like ‘Boxing Match’ as ‘Everybody’s Loving Each Other’ Afterwards

Also on Thursday, Ecclestone gave an interview to Piers Morgan for TalkTV in which he seemed to refer to the people of Ukraine as “Russians.”

“How many Russians were there in Ukraine when he (Putin) invaded? … They were all Russian people,” he said.

He also compared the ongoing special military operation in Ukraine and the global political environment surrounding it to a boxing match.

“These things happen in war, after the war everyone is good friends,” he said. “It’s like a boxing match, after a boxing match everyone is loving each other.”

“These things happen in war… after a war everyone’s good friends.”

Bernie Ecclestone compares Putin’s war on Ukraine to “a boxing match” telling Piers Morgan, “after the boxing match, everybody’s loving each other.”@piersmorgan | @TalkTV | #piersuncensored pic.twitter.com/q3BuJg2hqa

— Piers Morgan Uncensored (@PiersUncensored) June 30, 2022

Ecclestone oversaw Formula One for four decades before stepping down in 2017. With his wife Fabiana Flosi, 45, he announced the birth of their fourth child in 2020.

The former top executive is no stranger to making divisive statements, and Formula One has already reportedly distanced itself from his remarks, saying that it was his personal opinion and not the opinion of management.

“The comments made by Bernie Ecclestone are his personal views and are in very stark contrast to the position of the modern values of our sport,” the statement said.

 

In any case, everyone in Estonia will be on the Russian side — Readovka.world

Since July 1, the Polish Government will no longer pay 40 PLN (about 276 UAH) daily for food and accommodation of Ukrainian refugees.This was stated by Pavel Shefernaker, government commissioner for refugees and deputy chief of Poland’s Ministry of the Interior and Administration, reports Rzeczpospolita newspaper. «We are convinced that many people in Poland are able to become independent and adapt», — he said. However, there also will be exceptions. Benefits will be expanded for a certain group of individuals: people with disabilities, pregnant women and large families. With a special law on assistance to Ukrainian ref

 

SPECIAL MILITARY OPERATION IN UKRAINE

Allied forces prepare to fully liberate Lisichansk in coming days — LPR

LUGANSK, July 2. /TASS/. The allied forces of the Lugansk People’s Republic (LPR) and Russia are preparing to completely liberate Lisichansk in the coming days, Vitaly Kiselev, an aide to the LPR interior minister, told TASS on Saturday.

“Full liberation of Lisichansk is being prepared for the coming days,” he said. “Regardless of how many Ukrainian troops are there, regardless of who their commanders are, regardless of whether anyone there has the courage to stand up and walk towards us, denazification and demilitarization are inevitable for everyone,” he said.

Rodion Miroshnik, the ambassador of the Lugansk People’s Republic in Moscow, said on Friday LPR and Russian forces had seized control of northern areas of Lisichansk and were mopping them up.

Over the past three days, Russian units took under control the Lisichansk oil refinery, the Matrosskaya mine, the Gelatin plant and the settlement of Topolevka, the Russian Defense Ministry said on Friday. According to Defense Ministry spokesman Lieutenant General Igor Konashenkov, the Ukrainian army’s failures on the battlefield are leading to a growing number of deserters and those who are escaping combat operations. A disorganized retreat of some Ukrainian troops from Lisichansk is being observed, he added.

 

INSIGHTS

As West blames Moscow for ‘food crisis’, ships sail from Mariupol with Moscow’s help while Ukraine holds vessels in its ports

@evakbartlett

Western media and state officials keep blaming Russia for the ‘food crisis,’ but Moscow is trying to reopen Ukrainian and Donbass ports

Without much notice in the West, on June 21, the first foreign ship departed from the Port of Mariupol since Ukrainian and foreign mercenary forces were fully forced out of the Donbass city a month prior. Escorted by Russian naval boats, the vessel’s departure set the precedent for a resumption of normal port activity to and from Mariupol.

Russia’s Defense Ministry on May 20 announced the liberation of the Azovstal plant from Ukraine’s Nazi Azov Battalion, and some days later stated that sappers had demined an area of one and a half million square meters around the city’s port.

In early June, the ministry declared the facility ready for use anew. “The de-mining of Mariupol’s port has been completed. It is functioning normally, and has received its first cargo ships,” Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu said at the time.

Russia promised to give ships safe passage, and on June 21, the Turkish ship Azov Concord left with a Russian escort. At Mariupol port that day, prior to setting off, the captain of the ship, Ivan Babenkov, spoke to the media, telling us that the vessel, without cargo, was heading to Novorossiysk for loading, and then on to its destination.

Rear Admiral Viktor Kochemazov, commander of the Russian naval base in Novorossiysk on the Black Sea’s northeastern coast, down the Kerch Strait from Mariupol, explained that while the corridor has been operational since May 25, the nearly one-month delay in departing was because “ships were significantly damaged during the conduct of hostilities.” Notably, he also said that some ships were deliberately damaged by Ukrainian forces in order to prevent them from leaving.

Ukraine’s neo-Nazi Azov Battalion has built a ‘state within a state,’ and it despises both Russia and the liberal West

From aboard a Russian anti-sabotage forces boat, media watched the Azov Concord leave port. Further on, the ship would be met by warships of the Novorossiysk base and escorted to the Kerch Strait where FSB border control ships would continue to escort the ship.

A Bulgarian ship, the Tsarevna, was readying to depart the port next, “also following the same humanitarian corridor to its destination in accordance with plans for the use of the court by the owner,” Rear Admiral Kochemazov said.

Predictably, just as the Western media continues to ignore Ukraine’s war crimes against the Donbass republics, including not only the bombing of houses, hospitals, and busy markets –  plus the killing and maiming of civilians – so too do they omit coverage of anything positive emanating from areas where Ukrainian forces have been ousted and stability restored.

Instead, Western media continues to spin the story that it’s Russia that’s blocking ports and preventing grain exports, and blame Moscow for “aggravating the global food crisis” – when in reality, it is Ukraine that has mined ports and burned grain storages.  

More blatant disinformation from our US colleagues. They perfectly know that the Ukrainian ports are mined by Kiev and our offers of humanitarian sea passages were repeatedly rejected. And don’t trigger famine in #Ukraine by depriving it of grain-don’t tell us we didn’t warn you! https://t.co/Y9PqG9hoJZ

— Dmitry Polyanskiy (@Dpol_un) May 12, 2022

In fact, according to Russia’s Ministry of Defense, “70 foreign vessels from 16 countries remain blocked in six Ukrainian ports (Kherson, Nikolaev, Chernomorsk, Ochakov, Odessa and Yuzhniy). The threat of shelling and high mine danger posed by official Kiev prevent vessels from entering the high seas unhindered.”

While Russia maintains it has opened two maritime humanitarian corridors in the Black and Azov Seas, Kiev is apparently not engaging with representatives of states and ship-owning companies about the departure of docked foreign ships.

Meanwhile, in the same vein, media outlets like the New York Times (writing as always from afar) claim that Mariupol is “suffering deeply” under Russian rule (citing the runaway former mayor, nowhere near the city for months, who is the source of previous war propaganda) even describing the Azov Neo-Nazis as “the city’s last military resistance.”

Yet, what I’ve seen in multiple trips to Mariupol in the past couple of weeks is rubble being removed so that the rebuilding process can begin, newly established street markets, public transportation running, and calm in the streets.

The people of Mariupol have indeed suffered, but now that the Azov Nazis and Ukrainian nationalists no longer reign, they can live without fear of persecution, execution, rape, torture, and all of the other ‘democratic values’ of the forces backed by the West.

The rebuilding will take time, but with the port functioning anew, and the possibility now of also bringing reconstruction materials by sea, it can begin, ship by ship.

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