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Archive for July 1st, 2010

Parliamentary commission to investigate pressure on media in Ukraine

Posted by the Editor on July 1, 2010


News / 1 July 2010 | 16:34

Parliamentary commission to investigate pressure on media in Ukraine

Parliamentary commission to investigate pressure on media in Ukraine

The Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine has formed an interim commission to investigate into the facts of censorship in mass media, pressure on freedom of speech in Ukraine and preventing legal professional activity of journalists.

The commission will try cases of interference by public authorities and local self-government, their officials in the activity of media, as well as media reports about pressure on freedom of speech.

The commission is headed by a member of the opposition faction Our Ukraine – People’s Self-Defense Iryna Herashchenko, and member of the Party of Regions faction, Volodymyr Landyk, acts as deputy chairman of the commission.

The investigative commission will be valid for 1 year and will deliver its first preliminary report within three months.

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Yanukovych bought cocain and marijuana for meeting with law enforcement bodies

Posted by the Editor on July 1, 2010


News / 1 July 2010 | 14:42

Yanukovych bought cocain and marijuana for meeting with law enforcement bodies

Yanukovych bought cocain and marijuana for meeting with law enforcement bodies

President Viktor Yanukovych held a meeting with law enforcement and other government agencies’ leadership dedicated to fighting crime and drug trafficking.

In his opening remarks, Viktor Yanukovych said: “Our today’s meeting is caused by the need to take drastic measures to overcome the situation of a growing crime rate in the country, which in my view is critical.

Clearly, the overwhelming number of problems arose neither today, nor yesterday. They were left to us as a legacy from our predecessors. I must admit that the fight against crime and drug trafficking has been, and so far, I do stress – so far – is unsystematic, chaotic and inefficient. Unfortunately, I  see no initiative from law enforcement agencies, neither any warnings, which I think would be  logical from the Ministry of Health Care.”

The president criticized the law enforcemenr bodies for neglecting their direct duties.

“I consider the attitude of relevant bodies’ leadership towards carrying out their duties formal and sometimes irresponsible. Much is done so far by inertia, as it has been done in recent years. There are some short but demonstrative examples.

Serious crimes rate has increased by 40% in average across the country. The highest rates are in Crimea, Dnipropetrovsk and Kirovohrad regions. Thus, the rate of solved crimes dropped from 77.4% to 71%. In Crimea and Dnipropetrovsk it has decreased from 65% to 62%,” he said.

Yanukovych paid special attention to the problem of drug smuggling and distribution.

“I am particularly concerned about the situation with drug trafficking in Ukraine, especially among the minors. I think law enforcement authorities do not do enough to eradicate and prevent this evil. I would even call their actions a crime.

How can we say that something is being done if one can buy the whole range of drugs on the Internet? Are you aware of this, dear chairmen? Ministers, Attorney General?” he said.

President Yanukovych has demonstrated to participants of the meeting and media representatives the samples of drugs, which officers of relevant department of the Presidential Administration deliberately bought in preparation for today’s event by order of the Head of State. Among the purchased substances were marijuana, cocaine, other drugs, psychotropic substances and dangerous prescription medicine.

“Why do “shopping networks” that distribute drugs still exist? Why is Ukrainian law and relevant international obligations violated so shamelessly? Who is responsible for that? Who does poison people, the youth?” said Yanukovych.

“The situation with fighting narcotic and psychotropic substances trafficking in Ukraine is critical. And Ministry of Health Care fights the problem poorly, too. For instance, our neighbors have twice as much of substances banned. In Ukraine, on the other hand, one can buy anything he likes and circulation of these substances is sometimes going on through healthcare facilities.

As a result, drug dealers focus their efforts on bringing this poison to Ukraine. In fact, this is a gangsterism with the face of an office worker. In this case the law protects interests of drug mafia. And there is no initiative from the Ministry of Health Care.

I think the result of today’s meeting should be an action plan of systematic and uncompromising fight against crime and illegal drugs trafficking.

The impunity of a separate crime is a sentence to the whole society. Every crime left unpunished breeds new crime. We must break this terrible chain of crimes and give people confidence in secure and safe future,” the president summed up.

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World Bank sees Ukrainian economy expanding

Posted by the Editor on July 1, 2010


News / 1 July 2010 | 12:51

World Bank sees Ukrainian economy expanding

World Bank sees Ukrainian economy expanding

Ukraine’s economy will expand 3.5 percent this year, boosted by exports, the World Bank said today in a report on the former Soviet republic.

Gross domestic product will grow 4 percent next year and 5 percent the following year, the bank said at a press conference today in Kiev, Bloomberg reports.

World Bank economist Ruslan Piontkivskyi also said at the press conference that Ukraine urgently needs to contain the state budget deficit because the government has “overestimated” revenue, including what it brings in from value-added taxes. The budget gap will remain above 8 percent of GDP this year, he said

The bank also forecast the inflation rate at the end of this year to be 11.9 percent, while the rate next year will be 9.5 percent. It will fall to 8.1 percent in 2012.

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Naftogaz wants guarantees from Gazprom on minimum volumes of gas transit

Posted by the Editor on July 1, 2010


News / 1 July 2010 | 11:02

Naftogaz wants guarantees from Gazprom on minimum volumes of gas transit

Naftogaz wants guarantees from Gazprom on minimum volumes of gas transit

National JSC Naftogaz of Ukraine is holding talks with Russia’s Gazprom to ensure that gas contracts foresee penalties for the non-observance of gas transit commitments under the “pump or pay” principle, UKRINFORM reported.

Naftogaz Deputy CEO Vadym Chuprun said that “the contract contains the “take or pay” principle for Ukraine, but with respect to Gazprom, this condition does not exist.” “Naftogaz lost USD 600 million last year because of a reduction in transit volumes,” he added.

According to a source of the publication at the Ukrainian Fuel and Energy Ministry, Ukraine stressed the need to include the “pump or pay” principle in the document at the talks held in April 2010. He also added that it was extremely important for Ukraine to reach agreement on the pumping of a fixed amount of gas by 2013, when the Nord Stream gas pipeline will operate at full capacity (the maximum volume of pumping is 55 billion cubic meters), as its work theoretically poses a threat that gas transit volumes could decline to 50 billion cubic meters.

The designed capacity of the Ukrainian gas transport system is 142 billion cubic meters.

In 2009, Ukraine transited 75 billion cubic meters of Russian gas. Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych said earlier that gas transit had fallen by around 25 billion cubic meters because of the gas conflict with Russia last year.

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