POLSKA УКРАЇНА - My - Polacy, ale żyjemy w Ukrainie

Criminal Record of Crimean Journalist Mykola Semena Officially Cleared

An RFE/RL contributor in Ukraine’s Russia-controlled Crimea region has received court papers officially confirming the termination of his probation and the expunging of his criminal record.A court in Crimea’s capital, Simferopol, on January 14 ruled to prematurely terminate the probation period and expunge the criminal record of Mykola Semena, who had been convicted of separatism on the peninsula.Semena received a copy of the ruling on January 28 and is now considered totally free.Semena, who has contributed to RFE/RL’s Krym.Realii (Crimea Realities) reporting project, was arrested by Crimea’s Russia-imposed authorities in April 2016 and charged with acting against the “territorial integrity of the Russian Federation.”He says the accusation was politically motivated and violated fundamental freedoms of expression and that Russian authorities based their case on an inaccurate translation of one of his stories from Ukrainian into Russian.In September 2017, a court convicted him and gave Semena a 2 1/2-year suspended sentence and banned him from “public activity” for three years.Three months later, a court that Russia calls the Supreme Court of Crimea upheld his conviction.The United States, the European Union, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, and international media watchdogs all condemned the trial and verdict.In December, the National Union of Journalists of Ukraine asked President Volodymyr Zelenskiy to include the native Crimean journalist and five other colleagues on the list of people held captive in occupied territories for a prisoner exchange and be released to mainland Ukraine.The United Nations has documented numerous human rights abuses in Crimea, accusing the Russian-imposed authorities of conducting a persistent campaign of oppression that targets opponents of the peninsula’s annexation, including many among the regions’ indigenous Crimean Tartars, independent media outlets, and journalists.Russian President Vladimir Putin gave the order to seize Crimea in 2014 after Moscow-friendly Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych abandoned office and fled to Russia amid a popular pro-democracy uprising.

Bloomberg Creates a Parallel Presidential Race. Can he Win?

When the leading Democratic presidential candidates marked Martin Luther King Jr. Day by linking arms and marching through South Carolina’s capital, Michael Bloomberg was nowhere near the early primary state.The former New York mayor was instead in Arkansas, tossing out candy at a King Day parade and enjoying his status as the only presidential hopeful in town.“Mike Boomerang?” a woman asked, as the billionaire businessman walked by.“Mike Bloomberg,” a supporter clarified. “He’s running for president.”Bloomberg is running, but he’s on his own track, essentially creating a parallel race to the nomination with no precedent. While his competitors are hunkered down in the four states with the earliest primaries, Bloomberg is almost everywhere else — a Minnesota farm, a Utah co-working space, an office opening in Maine. He’s staked his hopes on states like Texas, California and Arkansas that vote on March 3, aiming to disrupt the Democratic primary right around the time it’s typically settling on a front-runner. Or, should Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, a self-described democratic socialist, be that front-runner, Bloomberg could be a backstop to Democrats still looking for a moderate choice.Skipping the early voting states and banking on success in later delegate-rich contests has never been done successfully. But no candidate has ever brought the financial firepower that Bloomberg can — he is worth an estimated $60 billion and has already spent more than $200 million building a campaign in more than two dozen states, taking him well past Super Tuesday.“Every other campaign thinks about this as a sequential set of contests. They spend time in Iowa and New Hampshire … hoping that they’ll (get a) momentum bounce from one to the next,” said Dan Kanninen, Bloomberg’s states director. “We’re thinking about this as a national conversation.”There’s little public polling available to measure Bloomberg’s progress. National polls show his support in the mid to high single digits, similar to that of former South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg.But interviews with voters and party officials across the Super Tuesday states show Bloomberg is still just starting to make an impression. While officials marveled at the inescapable ambition of Bloomberg’s advertising, many voters still do not know who he is, or know only what they’ve seen on television. Others noted they were interested but were still waiting to see who emerged as a clear leader in earlier contests.“I’ve been trying to read up on him to figure out if he’s going to be my key player,” said Cassandra Barbee, a hotel worker who watched Bloomberg in the Arkansas parade. She said his ads about helping people access health care appeal to her.Bloomberg isn’t the sole candidate campaigning beyond the first four states. Elizabeth Warren’s campaign said it has more than 1,000 staffers, the same number Bloomberg has been touting, across 31 states. All the major campaigns have operations in California, the biggest delegate prize, and several are up and running in states like Texas and North Carolina.But no candidate’s reach matches Bloomberg’s. He had spent more than $225 million on television and digital advertisements as of mid-January, according to the tracking firm Advertising Analytics, and he’s run television ads in at least 27 states. That’s 10 times what each of the other leading candidates has spent, according to the firm’s tracking.Bloomberg has already campaigned in every Super Tuesday state, in addition to states like Florida, Michigan, and Ohio, which vote later but are major general election battleground states where Bloomberg thinks his message will resonate. Meanwhile, his campaign pushes out a steady stream of endorsements, policy plans and ads that keep him in the headlines as Iowa’s caucuses near.“He’s definitely piquing my interest,” said Erica Moore, a guidance counselor at Little Rock schools. Moore said she’s aware of Bloomberg because his ads air constantly but said she wasn’t sure whether she’d vote for him.How exactly Bloomberg plans to win enough delegates to capture the nomination is unclear. The campaign acknowledges public polls show he hasn’t hit the 15% threshold he will need to win delegates, which are awarded proportionally statewide and by congressional district. Kanninen would not set hard targets for what success looks like on Super Tuesday, when a third of all delegates are awarded. Bloomberg needs to win some delegates, Kanninen said, but regardless of performance, “we’re prepared to move on and compete vigorously.”But winning a share of delegates isn’t enough, said Democratic strategist Bill Carrick, who argued that Bloomberg needs to win several Super Tuesday states to be credible. And Bloomberg’s anti-Trump advertising may not move voters his way in the primary, Carrick said.“I think that people are going to separate out whether they want him to have a robust effort in the general election taking on Trump versus him being the candidate,” he said.The best boost to Bloomberg’s chances may be what happens in the weeks leading up to Super Tuesday. As national and early state polls show Sanders in a strong position, Bloomberg could emerge as a moderate alternative should former Vice President Joe Biden or other candidates look weak. While Bloomberg has said he would support Sanders if he were the nominee, the two differ sharply on policy.Winning the primary isn’t Bloomberg’s only aim. He hopes his ads and organizing soften the ground for whomever Democrats pick to challenge Trump and help Democrats in down-ticket races. Bloomberg has committed to continue to spend millions — keeping offices and organizers in battleground states — regardless of whether he is the nominee.One of those states is North Carolina, where the campaign announced this week it had more than 100 paid employees. That’s a staffing benchmark more typical for a general election campaign. Hardly a local newscast or game show passes by in a major TV market that a Bloomberg commercial isn’t airing.“He’s really giving North Carolina Democrats the chance to fight in the general election by running ads now,” said Justin Vollmer, a top Bloomberg adviser in the state.Those ads tout his record on issues like health care and gun control and attack Trump, branding him a “dangerous demagogue” and calling for his removal from office. “Mike will get it done” is the former mayor’s slogan.A former Republican and a businessman, Bloomberg believes he’ll appeal to moderates and conservatives frustrated with the president. But he has clear competition on that argument from both Biden and Buttigieg.Judy Eason McIntyre, 74, who attended a Bloomberg speech last week in Tulsa, Oklahoma, thinks he would match up well against Trump, but that’s not enough to win her vote.“I’m one of those older black folks that’s going to stick with Biden,” said McIntyre, a former state senator and longtime Democratic Party activist. “But out of the candidates I see, being practical, he and Michael Bloomberg are the ones who could beat Trump, and that’s what I’m after.”Bloomberg’s campaign says it’s not focused on comparison with other Democrats.“We’re not really running against the field — we’re running against Donald Trump,” Kanninen said.Bloomberg recently brought his anti-Trump message to Utah, where Democratic presidential primary ads are “relatively unheard of,” said Jeff Merchant, chair of the Utah Democratic Party. Speaking in Salt Lake City last week, Bloomberg appealed to left-leaning voters who feel overlooked in a state that hasn’t supported a Democrat for president since 1964.“We shouldn’t be writing off any state no matter how red people think it is,” Bloomberg said while speaking at a modern co-working space.In some Super Tuesday states, Bloomberg is coming with a history that won’t necessarily help him court moderates and disaffected Republicans. In Virginia, which offers the third-most Super Tuesday delegates, he helped Democrats win full control of the state legislature for the first time in a generation last year through spending by his gun control group, Everytown for Gun Safety.Democrats are now set to pass a slate of gun control measures, prompting the National Rifle Association to put Bloomberg’s face on a billboard. Such notoriety could serve to bolster his credentials with Democrats but turn off voters in gun-friendly southern states.Perhaps the biggest question of Bloomberg’s candidacy is whether an ad blitz is enough to win over primary voters. In California, Republican businesswoman Meg Whitman lost statewide in 2010 after spending nearly $100 million, losing to the better-known Democrat Jerry Brown.And in Texas, it wasn’t a barrage of TV ads that laid the groundwork for Democrat Beto O’Rourke to nearly win a Senate seat in 2018. It was his up-close-and-personal campaign that took him to every single county that captured voters’ attention.So far, no major Texas officials have backed Bloomberg, even after he finished a five-city bus tour through the state earlier this month.But Garry Mauro, who was the Texas chairman for both Clintons’ presidential campaigns, sees Bloomberg’s strategy as sensible. Mauro, who supports Biden, says no candidate but Bloomberg has the money to saturate Texas’ many television markets, and there’s no guarantee that a clear front-runner will emerge before Super Tuesday.“He’s betting on nobody’s getting the momentum, and he can get his own momentum on TV,” he said. “That’s a totally different approach than what we’ve ever seen before.”

Warren Offers Infectious-disease Plan Amid China Outbreak

Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren has announced a plan to prevent, contain and treat infectious diseases as a new viral illness spreads in China.The Massachusetts senator on Tuesday unveiled a plan that includes fully funding the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s pandemic prevention and response programs. The agency has faced stiff budget cuts under President Donald Trump, including to emergency funds and global health programs that were established following West Africa’s Ebola epidemic in 2014.“Like so much else, Trump’s approach to keeping us safe from disease outbreaks is a mess,” Warren wrote in an online post announcing the plan. “But when he’s gone, we can fix it.”Warren’s proposal comes as the coronavirus has killed more than 100 people in China and the city at the center of the crisis, Wuhan, remains on lockdown. The U.S. has confirmed cases in Washington state, Illinois, Southern California and Arizona.The timing of Warren’s announcement was no accident — nor is the fact that she’s the candidate drawing up the proposal. During more than a year of campaigning, Warren has embraced the reputation of having “a plan” for nearly everything. She remains bunched near the top of the polls with former Vice President Joe Biden, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders and former South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigeig, with the Iowa caucuses, which lead off primary voting, looming on Feb. 3.Warren blamed the Trump administration for proposing “billions in cuts to the agencies responsible for fighting and preventing pandemics, a devastating blow that would put lives at risk.” Not all of those reductions have been approved by Congress, though.She also promised to push the CDC to develop vaccines against infectious diseases, including a universal immunization against the flu. But it is the National Institutes of Health that has already made a priority of developing a better flu vaccine.Warren said she can mitigate the spread of disease by fighting climate change and moving the U.S. to a universal, government-funded health system under the “Medicare for All” program. She also wants to increase NIH funding by $100 billion.Although such a high price tag may make it difficult to survive the appropriations process, Warren plans to help with the funding by creating a “swear jar.” That would be a pot of money requiring private companies to pay some of their profits from publicly funded research back to the NIH.Warren further promises to work with Congress to replenish funding for the Department of Health and Human Services’ Public Health Emergency Fund to better respond to outbreaks and to create a Global Health Security Corps that will “ensure that we can get the right expertise to the center of an outbreak before it becomes an epidemic.”“Diseases like coronavirus remind us why we need robust international institutions, strong investments in public health, and a government that is prepared to jump into action at a moment’s notice,” Warren wrote. “When we prepare and effectively collaborate to address common threats that don’t stop at borders, the international community can stop these diseases in their tracks.”

EU Slaps Sanctions on 7 over Elections in East Ukraine

The European Union on Tuesday slapped sanctions on seven people accused of undermining Ukraine’s sovereignty for their role in organizing Russian local elections in the Crimean Peninsula, annexed by Moscow in 2014.The seven, who will see their assets frozen and face travel bans in Europe, include a top official in Crimea and senior electoral commission officers in the city of Sevastopol whom the EU blame for running the elections on Sept. 8.”Through their involvement in the elections, these people actively supported actions and implemented policies which undermine or threaten the territorial integrity, sovereignty and independence of Ukraine,” EU headquarters said in a statement.The move means that 177 people and 44 “entities” – organizations, associations or companies – are now under EU sanctions over allegations of undermining Ukraine’s territorial integrity.The EU imposed sanctions on Russia after it annexed Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula in 2014 and the bloc refuses to recognize Moscow’s authority there. It has separate sanctions targeting the Russian economy which are due to remain in place until at least July 31. 

Геноцид и Ахметов: новый дом за 200 млн, инвестиции и тарифы

Геноцид и Ахметов: новый дом за 200 млн, инвестиции и тарифы.

Привет. Это “Итоги дна”. Пока Зеленский пытается затащить инвесторов в Украину, самый богатый украинец Ахметов вкладывает 200 миллионов евро в недвижимость Франции. И не просто недвижимость, а целый дворец короля Леопольда II.

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Найкращі пропозиції товарів і послуг в Мережі Купуй!

Новые хотелки Путина или перепрошивка холопов

Новые хотелки Путина или перепрошивка холопов.

Пока в уши россиянам вливают обильные порции новой лапши, Путин и компания цементируют свою власть на десятилетия вперед.

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Начало “грандиозного шухера” в ОРДЛО: «Курс изменился, а Сурков не перестроился»…

Начало “грандиозного шухера” в ОРДЛО: «Курс изменился, а Сурков не перестроился»…

Чего ожидать после отставки бессменного куратора ОРДЛО Суркова

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Bolton Testimony Could Change Trump Impeachment Trial

The impeachment trial of U.S. President Donald Trump resumed Monday amid reports of new evidence that could change Republican senators’ vote for witness testimony later this week. A New York Times report revealed former National Security Advisor John Bolton alleges Trump personally told him he conditioned aid to Ukraine on an investigation into his political rivals. VOA’s Congressional correspondent Katherine Gypson has more on the potential turning-point in the impeachment case.