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Ukraine crisis deepens after rebel vote in east

(Reuters) – Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko called an emergency meeting of his security chiefs for Tuesday to discuss new ways of dealing with the separatist challenge in the east after rebel elections that were denounced by Kiev and the West. The rogue votes, which Kiev says Russia encouraged, could create a new “frozen conflict” in […]

Ukrainian Jews satisfied with far-right’s crash in elections

(JTA) – Representatives of Ukraine’s Jewish communities said they were pleased with the stinging defeat of nationalist candidates in parliamentary elections. In Sunday’s parliamentary elections – the first since the ouster of president Viktor Yanukovych in February in a revolution that triggered a territorial conflict with Russia – the far-right Svoboda party saw its take halved […]

CRIMEA: Guns, weapons, drugs – and religious literature

By Felix Corley, Forum 18 News Service Crimea’s acting Prime Minister Sergei Aksyonov has ordered a moratorium on raids, searches and literature confiscations until 1 January 2015. Before it there were many raids on libraries, schools, political organisations, Muslim homes, mosques and madrassahs, and Jehovah’s Witness Kingdom Halls, Forum 18 News Service notes. Fines for […]

Canada’s religious freedom ambassador accuses Russia of kidnapping Christians in Ukraine

Canada’s religious freedom ambassador is bound for Ukraine and says Russian President Vladimir Putin is orchestrating the persecution of Orthodox Christians, Catholics and Muslim Tatars. Andrew Bennett’s one-week, fact-finding mission begins Monday in Kyiv, where he meets religious leaders and government officials, among others. He is also expected to announce a package of Canadian government […]

Ukrainian official: Jews ‘among the best protectors of our country’

Ukrainian Jews have enriched their country and the actions of “stupid people or provocateurs” do not mean that all Ukrainians are anti-Semitic, a Ukrainian official said in response to reports to a failed firebombing of a Kiev synagogue immediately prior to Rosh Hashana. Anti-Semitism is “far worse” in many other European countries than it is […]


  The dramatic decrease in Ukrainian anti-Semitism has not been reported in the press. Vladimir Putin and the Russian propaganda machine have depicted rampant anti-Semitism in Ukraine and has used this as one of the justifications for their invasion of Crimea and eastern Ukraine. One of the beneficial outcomes of the Maydan Revolution has been […]

Ukraine’s pagan pro-Russian rebels dream of a new Eden

Lily Hyde, Donetsk A pro-Russia militia in Ukraine has ambitions far beyond the ousting of the Kiev government In a grassy clearing in rebel-held east Ukraine, pagan Slavic supremacists in battledress, some cradling Kalashnikovs, raised their arms around a bonfire and prayed for victory over Russia’s enemies. Carved wooden idols representing pre-Christian Slavic gods overlooked […]

From Lugansk to Code Red in Ashdod

  “Once the war began, the Israeli consul in Lugansk helped us leave Ukraine. We had passports, and soon we received assistance from The Jewish Agency and the organization “Ezra.” They even escorted us to the plane which brought us to Israel. They secured us entirely, everything was very smooth and organized, and I thank […]

Unable to flee, elderly Jews remain behind in eastern Ukraine

  DNIPROPETROVSK – More than 1,600 elderly Jews are either unable or unwilling to leave the rebel stronghold of Donetsk in eastern Ukraine, according to the director of the local branch of a local welfare organization. Lyudmila Saprikina, the head of the Donetsk branch of Hesed, which cares for Jewish senior citizens throughout the former […]

CRIMEA: The unbearable burden of re-registration?

    CRIMEA: The unbearable burden of re-registration? By Felix Corley, Forum 18 News Service All 1,546 religious communities in Crimea which had state registration with the Ukrainian authorities are being required to re-register under Russian law by 1 January 2015 if they wish to retain legal status. A wide range of communities have complained […]