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bushmeister0's Journal
Posted by bushmeister0 in General Discussion (1/22-2007 thru 12/14/2010)
Tue Aug 19th 2008, 09:20 AM
We already know relations between Viktor Yushchenko's Ukraine and Vlad Putin's Russia are not exactly warm. In fact, Yushchenko was nearly killed by poision put into his soup that was widely blamed on the FSB, Putin's crew.

Anyway, the Russian Black Sea Fleet is a bone of contention these days. The fleet is based at Sevastopol (and Novorossiysk, in Russia), a port in the Ukrainian Crimea. According to a 1997 agreement the Russian fleet is supossed to be out by 2017. Moscow's mayor Yuri Luzhkov, who spends of lot of money stirring up Russin expats in the Crimean (Sevastopol's population 390,000 - 75 percent Russian and 20 percent Ukrainian) has been banned from entering Ukraine for his comments on taking back Sevastopol.

Kommersant.com:

"Ukrainian authorities introduced Monday the timeless ban on visits of Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzhkov. Luzhkov called on to focus on getting back Sevastopol during the celebration of the 225th anniversary of the RF Black Sea Fleet held in that city of Ukrainian Crimea . . .

In Luzhkov’s interpretation, the truth is that Russia should have Sevastopol back under its jurisdiction. When Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev handed over Crimea to Ukraine, the mayor went on, he 'didn’t take pains to properly execute it, and everything was given without mentioning Sevastopol. 'So far, Sevastopol has been never handed over to Ukraine, according to historic documents. The issue of Sevastopol should be brought to the international court… I’ll officially address leaders of our state, the State Duma, the Federation Council to raise the Sevastopol issue anew.'

The Security Council of Ukraine was the first to rebuff by banning the Moscow mayor from any new visits to the country. Besides, the detectives in Ukraine are probing into his potential involvement in money laundering in Sevastopol.

http://www.kommersant.com/p890983 /

Unian.net reports today:

"Russia has to make certain steps to leave the Agreement on Friendship with Ukraine. We also have to make respective decisions in the sphere of defending our interests at the Black Sea fleet”, Yuri Luzhkov pointed out.

'Recently Victor Yushchenko claimed he will not make steps for Ukraine to leave the Agreement on Friendship. At the same time, the Ukraine leadership, contrary to the will of their people, strive to enter NATO. What friendship are they talking about, when Ukraine is accessing a hostile military structure, which is impending over Russia', Yuri Luzhkov said."

http://unian.net/eng/news/news-244419.html

The Agreement on Friendship expires this year.

May 5 2008, RI Novosti reported:

"Last month, the head of the State Duma committee on CIS affairs, Alexei Ostrovsky, said that Russia could reclaim the Crimea if Ukraine was admitted to NATO. Media reported that then-president Vladimir Putin issued a similar threat at a closed-door speech to NATO leaders at the Bucharest summit earlier in April.

http://en.rian.ru/world/20080512/107142320...

Meanwhile:

"The ships of the Russian Black Sea Fleet – 'Moskva' missile cruiser, Smetlivy patrol boat, Mirazh missile boat, and Turbinist minesweeper – plan to enter Sevastopol in the morning of August 20.

According to the Defense Ministry of Ukraine, the leadership of the Russian fleet submitted to the Defense Ministry of Ukraine the official information about the planned entrance of four ships to Sevastopol.

As UNIAN reported earlier, President Yushchenko of Ukraine signed a decree requiring the fleet, based in the Crimean port of Sevas-topol, to give 72 hours’ notice of any ship movements. But General Nogovitsyn in Moscow said that the restrictions would be ignored. 'We have one general commander for the Black Sea Fleet,' he said. 'It is the President of Russia and all commands from outside are illegitimate to us.'"

http://www.unian.net/eng/news/news-268019....

Earlier this month:

Jamestown.org:

"Apparently expecting petrodollar-fed budgetary infusions, Russia’s navy expects to reinforce its Black Sea Fleet with new units, beef up its Novorossiysk base on Russian territory, and attempt to cling to the Sevastopol base in Ukraine past the 2017 deadline. Such is the gist of remarks by the commander-in-chief of Russia’s naval forces, Admiral Vladimir Masorin, on an inspection visit to Sevastopol and concurrently by Ministry of Foreign Affairs chief spokesman Mikhail Kamynin in Moscow.

Speaking to the staff and then to journalists, Masorin stated, 'I wish to underline that building up the Novorossiysk base does not mean that the Fleet would leave Sevastopol.' While a full-fledged naval base on Russian territory is indispensable to the fleet’s development and operations, 'not a single Russian ship will leave the Sevastopol main base' until 2017, he stated (Interfax-Ukraine, August 3). . .

Both Russia and Ukraine call for full and undeviating observance of the 1997 agreements, but attach different meanings of this phrase in some major respects. Crucially, Ukraine cites the 20-year time limit on the lease, calling for the Russian Fleet’s complete removal from Sevastopol and handover of the base to Ukraine by 2017. Russia, however, hopes to take advantage of a clause that permits the prolongation of that term by mutual consent. . .

This stricture alludes to Ukrainian proposals to start planning in advance for the termination of the Russian lease in 2017 and relocation of the Fleet to the Russian coast. Moscow, however, would limit the discussion to the Fleet’s 'presence and functioning' in Ukraine (prebyvanie i funktionirovanie) -- a phrase that recalls almost literally the Russian position during the negotiations with Georgia over Russian military bases in that country.

The Russian side, however, avoids discussing that issue, biding its time and almost certainly hoping to pressure or cajole a future Ukrainian government into prolongation by mutual consent. Until now, all Ukrainian governments irrespective of political color have been holding firm on this issue."

http://www.jamestown.org/edm/article.php?a...

Uh huh, maybe another cut off of natural gas to heat Ukraine during the worst part of the upcoming weather with focus the Ukrainians mind?
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