Poroshenko Dismisses Lugansk Governor Tuka And Head Of Foreign Intelligence Service

April 29, 2016
Georgiy Tuka. Screenshot from Hromadske TV

Ukraine Day 802: LIVE UPDATES BELOW.

Yesterday’s live coverage of the Ukraine conflict can be found here.


An Invasion By Any Other Name: The Kremlin’s Dirty War in Ukraine


Yuriy Harbuz Named As New Governor Of Lugansk

Ukrainski Novyny reports that Yuriy Harbuz, an MP in President Petro Poroshenko’s political party, has been named as the new governor of the Lugansk region, following the dismissal of Georgiy Tuka.

This was confirmed to the news agency by Taras Kutovoy, minister for agrarian policy.

Ukrainska Pravda notes that Harbuz is currently the deputy chairman of the Rada committee on preventing and combating corruption.

— Pierre Vaux

Nadiya Savchenko Files Extradition Documents

Mark Feygin, a lawyer for Nadiya Savchenko, a Ukrainian military officer who was abducted from Ukraine and jailed in Russia following a show trial, has told Interfax-Ukraine that his client has filled in extradition documents.

According to Feygin, Savchenko has categorically denied any guilt with regards to her murder charges in the documents.

She has, however, agreed to pay a 30,000 ruble fine for allegedly illegally crossing the Russian border, despite the fact that she was captured by militants in Ukraine’s Lugansk region and then transported to Russia whilst still a captive.

Her sister Vira told the 112 television channel that agreeing to pay this fine was a requisite to obtain permission for the extradition.

For background on Savchenko’s case, read our summary:

— Pierre Vaux

One Civilian, Three Ukrainian Soldiers Wounded Yesterday

One civilian and three Ukrainian servicemen were wounded yesterday in the Donbass, officials report.

According to the Donetsk police, a civilian man, born in 1964, suffered multiple shrapnel wounds after setting off a tripwire mine on the front line near government-controlled Granitnoye, east of Volnovakha.

The man had been walking on the outskirts of the town to pick grass for his rabbits. The police say that he has been taken to hospital in Volnovakha.

Later today, Colonel Andriy Lysenko, military spokesman for the Presidential Administration, told reporters at a briefing in Kiev that three soldiers had been wounded in the village of Shirokino, on the Azov coast east of Mariupol.

The Ukrainian military claims that Russian-backed fighters conducted 22 attacks yesterday, using 120 and 82 mm mortars to shell positions near Krasnogorovka and Avdeyevka and Beryozovoye.

Meanwhile the ‘defense ministry’ of the self-declared Donetsk People’s Republic (DNR) claims that Ukrainian forces conducted 30 attacks over 24 hours, firing 370 shells from mortars as well as 122 mm artillery.

According to the DNR, the majority of attacks were directed at the outskirts of Donetsk and Gorlovka, as well as Dokuchavesk, on the highway between Donetsk and Mariupol near Beryozovoe, and Sakhanka and Kominternovo, east of Mariupol.

— Pierre Vaux

Poroshenko Dismisses Lugansk Governor Tuka And Head Of Foreign Intelligence Service

President Petro Poroshenko has roday dismissed both the governor of the Lugansk region, Georgiy Tuka, and the head Ukraine’s Foreign Intelligence Service (SZRU), Viktor Hvozd.

Interfax-Ukraine reports that Poroshenko will appoint a new governor to head the Lugansk Regional Military-Civil Administration later today.

Tuka has been in charge of the eastern region, a large part of which, including the regional capital, is under occupation by Russian-backed forces, since July last year.

He replaced Hennadiy Moskal, who became governor of the restive Zakarpattia region.

Interfax-Ukraine reported that the grounds for Tuka’s dismissal were not yet clear. The outgoing governor himself has not made any comment on social media.

The dismissal of Hvozd meanwhile, was announced today on the President’s official website.

Lieutenant General Hvozd had been head of the SZRU since February 27, 2014, having been appointed in the immediate aftermath of the flight of Viktor Yanukovych to Russia.

In addition, Interfax-Ukraine reports that President Poroshenko has promoted Oleksiy Dniprov from deputy chief of the Presidential Administration to his chief of staff, and appointed Oleksiy Horaschenkov as an aide.

— Pierre Vaux