The week that passes reached the peak of political life in the country: literally, all the information fields are full of billboards with the faces of majoritarians; at the playgrounds, they hand out cotton candies to children to persuade parents to vote for exactly this man ‒ because he is so kind. But besides this festival of virtues, Ukraine has its own, no less important life: Sentsov is “celebrating” 6th birthday in the Russian colony, for the first time in several years they are ready to talk about the exchange, and the law on de-communization is recognized constitutional. About the really important things ‒ in our traditional digest.

Photo: Reuters

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation reported on negotiations with Ukraine on the exchange of captured seamen.

Our party has included the seamen-prisoners of war, held in the Lefortovo Detention Center, in the lists of people, whom the ombudswomen of Ukraine and Russia intend to exchange.

“We have seamen-prisoners of war o the lists. Now we carry out verification of the lists of the Russian Federation and make our clarifications on the situation. And the seamen, of course, they are on the lists,” Liudmyla Denisova, the representative of the Verkhovna Rada for Human Rights, said.

According to the Office of the President, the relevant agreement on the exchange was reached at a meeting of foreign policy advisers of the heads of the countries of the Normandy Four. It is expected that the first exchange will take place in the format of 10 for 10, or 15 for 15, and the main goal is to unlock this process.

And to start the process of goodwill in Russia is extremely difficult. The Moscow Lefortovo Court extended the arrest for three months until October 24 for all the captive sailors. The trial was held in camera. Also, the lawyer of the Ukrainian sailors said that now, no one is talking about the exchange.

“Exchanges, as such, are not provided at all. No one will exchange, like in the film, on the bridge. Mutual exchanges are possible with different procedural grounds from both sides. There are several procedural options for exchange, which can be implemented within one day,” the lawyer said.

The last exchange of hostages took place on December 27, 2017, before that ‒ in 2015. According to the SSU, 2 years ago, 73 hostages returned to the controlled territory. Ukraine transferred 233 people to the occupied territory.

Oleg Sentsov is 43! I would like to celebrate and rejoice, but the director is “celebrating” the sixth birthday in the Russian colony. I recall that filmmaker Oleg Sentsov was arrested in Crimea on May 10, 2014. Later, activist Oleksandr Kolchenko was also arrested. They were accused of preparing a terrorist attack, convicting Kolchenko to 10, and Sentsov to 20 years in prison.

Ukraine has had a lot of street actions, at the Odesa International Film Festival every screening has started with applause to Sentsov, and the Office of the President of Ukraine suggests that the Russian President’s Administration simultaneously release political prisoner Oleg Sentsov, convicted for terrorism in the Russian Federation, and RIA New Ukraine Chief Editor Kirill Vyshynsky, who is being judged in Ukraine for treason.

“Oleg Sentsov sends greetings to everyone from the colony. He is fine. He is working on new stories and short stories,” the lawyer Dmytro Dinze wrote on the eve of the director’s birthday.

The director, although he is confined beyond the Arctic Circle, continues to create: he writes scripts and books. And he hopes to return to Ukraine. Anyone can support Oleg, congratulate him on his birthday and talk about one’s own feelings.

In addition, we recommend watching a documentary about the director “Prison Stage for Half the World: the history of Sentsov and Kolchenko imprisoning”. The film crew of the Hromadske TV visited key cities on the paths of the stages of Oleg Sentsov and Oleksandr Kolchenko ‒ in Moscow, Rostov, Chelyabinsk, Labytnangi. They learned the conditions in which they are kept and which people are engaged in their destinies there, where the Ukrainian consuls have not been allowed, where it is still difficult for lawyers to reach.

There was two news out of domestic policy, and now ‒ to the favourite topic ‒ elections. While the CEC for the first time has published photos of all majoritarian candidates, the journalists counted that political parties have already spent more than 500 million UAH on election campaigns.

The total expenses of the parties, according to the interim financial statements, amount to 506 million UAH:

  • “Servant of the People” ‒ 96,9 million UAH (about 47% of voters are ready to support this party),
  • “Radical Party” ‒ 73 million UAH (2% impassable),
  • “Voice” – 71,6 million UAH (6% of electoral preferences),
  • “Groysman’s Ukrainian strategy” ‒ 6,12 million UAH (impassable 2%),
  • “Opposition Bloc” ‒ 55 million UAH (impassable 3.1%),
  • “European Solidarity” ‒ 47,2 million (third place in the ratings – about 8%),
  • “Fatherland” ‒ 35 million UAH (fourth place ‒ 7%),
  • “Civil position” ‒ 21 million UAH (impassable 1.4%),
  • “Strength and Honor” ‒ 18,4 million UAH (impassable 3.8%)
  • “Self-help Association” – 15,2 million UAH (impassable 0.5%).
  • Oppositional platform “For Life” ‒ no data (about 11% in ratings)

Traditionally, parties spend more on advertising in the media, primarily on television. They spent 411,5 million UAH, or 81% of the total expenditure of the parties on it.

Thanks to such fantastic ratings, Zelensky’s “Servant of the People” review the possibility of establishing early local elections and cover the whole world as the Dothraki from the Game of Thrones.

This was stated by the representative of Volodymyr Zelensky in the Verkhovna Rada Ruslan Stefanchuk. He explained that the President’s team wants to change the system of power itself. “Volodymyr Zelensky was going with a clear understanding that we are not interested in the question of changing people in the current system of government. If you throw a fresh cucumber into a barrel with sour cucumbers, it will become a sour cucumber,” the president’s spokesman said.

Photo: Reuters

And now from the “sour cucumbers” ‒ to a sweet dessert. According to media reports, on Tuesday, the Constitutional Court declared the law on de-communization constitutional. The Court’s schedule states that on Tuesday, in camera, it reviews the issue of determining the constitutionality of the law “On the condemnation of the communist and national socialist (Nazi) totalitarian regimes in Ukraine and banning the propaganda of their symbolism”.

According to the source, the Court decided that the propaganda of the communist regime is an attempt to justify totalitarianism and denial of constitutional principles and democratic values.

Also, the CC recognized the law on education constitutional. However, it’s too early to celebrate ‒ did you see the ratings above? To preserve what we have ‒ all go to the elections on July 21. And then go and rest the beach.

Text by Kostyantyn Rul

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