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February 17, 2017 Foreign Policy Initiative Brief on Ukraine

17 Feb 2017 2:45 PM | Myroslaw Smorodsky (Administrator)

 
February17,2017 Foreign Policy Initiative Brief on Ukraine

Ukraine this spring will renew its search for human remains at the crash site of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17, Dutch Security and Justice Minister Stef Blok has said. – Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty
 
Denis Voronenkov, the former Russian lawmaker who fled in October and has since taken Ukrainian citizenship, has come ready to chastise President Vladimir Putin, who he once supported, and his native Russia. – Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty
 
Alexander Vershbow writes: A sovereign, democratic Ukraine finds itself undermined at every turn by a provocative Russian neighbor desperate to see it fail, yet Ukraine is moving forward against all odds. The Ukrainian people know firsthand how hard it is to build a democracy. They deserve our reassurance they are not in this alone. – The Hill

Recent Russian military provocations are probably motivated by President Vladi­mir Putin’s belief that President Trump has been politically weakened by controversies surrounding his administration, Trump said Thursday. – Washington Post
 
Defense Secretary Jim Mattis appeared to close the door Thursday on increased military ties between the United States and Russia, dimming, for the moment, prospects that President Trump’s election would soon usher in warmer relations. – New York Times
 
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson made his debut on the world stage Thursday, meeting the Russian foreign minister and urging Moscow to pull back in eastern Ukraine, then signing a joint statement condemning North Korea’s latest ballistic missile test. – Washington Post
 
For days, news reports have noted the presence of a Russian naval ship lurking in international waters off the East Coast of the United States. For some critics of President Trump, the vessel has become a symbol of the administration’s ties with Russia. – New York Times
 
The first meeting between the top military officers in the United States and Russia since 2014 resulted in an agreement on enhancing communication to avoid “unintended incidents," the Office of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said Thursday. – The Hill
 
Moscow is instructing Russian state media to reduce their favorable coverage of President Trump, Bloomberg reported on Thursday. – The Hill
 
Defense Secretary James Mattis on Thursday said that there was "very little doubt" Russia has attempted to interfere in democratic elections in the past. – The Hill
 
The last major Russian spy arrested on U.S. soil was busted for seeking the kind of information retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn has been accused of dishing out. – The Daily Beast
 
Russian officials had been cautiously optimistic that the US under Mr Trump could rebuild relations with Moscow but they have turned guarded and in some cases suspicious and frustrated, mirroring sentiment in European capitals. – Financial Times

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