ISSUE 15 - SEPTEMBER 6, 2018
RFE/RL Investigative Journalist Targeted In Ukraine Data-Disclosure Order
Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, Sept 4, 2018 

Investigative reporter Natalya Sedletska, the host of Schemes, the anticorruption TV program by RFE/RL's Ukrainian Service

KYIV -- Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty is calling for the nullification of a Ukrainian court ruling that gives authorities access to nearly 1 1/2 years of cell-phone data from an RFE/RL investigative reporter, saying the decision violates Ukraine's own laws and Kyiv's commitments to a free press.

The ruling stems from a criminal investigation into the alleged disclosure of state secrets to journalists in 2017 by Artem Sytnyk, director of the National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine.

On August 27, the Pechersk District Court of Kyiv  ... CLICK to read more

Pro-Russia Separatist Leader Killed in Explosion in Ukraine's Donbas Region Coffee Shop
By  Cristina Maza, Newsweek, Aug 31, 2018

"Zakharchenko's death will not lead to instability because the shots in occupied eastern Ukraine are called by Mr. Putin and Russian authorities."

The pro-Russian leader of eastern Ukraine's separatist region Donetsk was killed Friday when an explosion went off in a café.

Local media reported that Alexander Zakharchenko, the prime minister of the Donetsk People's Republic, was killed in a terrorist attack. Two others were injured in the explosion ...  CLICK to read more

In Ukraine, Attacks on Civil Society Spread to the Regions
By Yevhen Bystrytsky, Atlantic Council, August 8, 2018

Kateryna Handziuk, an advisor to the mayor in Kherson, and an outspoken critic of police corruption, is in the hospital after being sprayed with acid on July 31 by a man who was waiting for her near her home. Credit: Kateryna Handziuk Facebook

Just about everyone credits Ukraine's persistent activists for almost every reform win since 2014. But four years after the Maidan, the public demand to put corrupt officials behind bars remains unanswered. Does that mean that civil society and the energy of the Maidan have reached their limits? It means just the opposite, actually. Resistance to anticorruption activity has increased as reforms needed more public engagement to proceed.

Ukraine's public engagement has taken various forms. Early on, experts from independent think tanks helped ministers develop reform policies. Because of Russia's aggression in Crimea and the Donbas, a number of volunteer organizations helped thousands resettle within the country and supply Ukrainian fighters with much-needed aid that the government couldn't supply at the time.

Thanks to the pressure exerted by the ... CLICK to read more 

Rada supports equal rights for male, female troops in Ukrainian army
Unian, Sept 6, 2018 

Photo from UNIAN
The Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine has adopted the Law of Ukraine "On amending certain laws of Ukraine on ensuring equal rights and opportunities for women and men at military service with the Armed Forces of Ukraine and other military formations" (No. 6109).

The decision was backed by 247 lawmakers, an UNIAN correspondent reports.

The law specifies that female troops perform military duty ... CLICK to read more 


on the White House website urging "our government to take a firm stance on this issue and use all leverage to demand immediate release of Oleg Sentsov and other Ukrainian political prisoners in Russia." 

Your participation is important as we need 100,000 signatures  by September 8, 2018 to get a response from the White House!

Crimean filmmaker Oleg Sentsov has been convicted to 20 years in Russian jail on false charges of terrorism as he opposed Russian annexation of Crimea. Almost three months ago he began a hunger strike demanding the release not for himself, but for all 64 Ukrainian political prisoners in Russia. Oleg's imminent death is rapidly approaching if there's no action as his condition is critical.
European parliament has already appealed to Vladimir Putin for immediate liberation of Oleg Sentsov and others. Now it is time for America to speak up. We urge our government to take a firm stance on this issue and use all leverage to demand immediate release of Oleg Sentsov and other Ukrainian political prisoners in Russia.


Russia refuses medical care to hunger striking Ukrainian political prisoner despite clear danger to life
By Halya Coynash, Kharkiv Human Rights Protection Group, Sept 6, 2018

Volodymyr Balukh "in court"

Volodymyr Balukh  is suffering severe pain in the liver area, and after almost six months on total or nearly total hunger strike is evidently in need of urgent medical care.  Russia's only response to his alarming condition and to the demand from the European Court of Human Rights for information about medical treatment has been to move him to a cell where he is under 24 hour video surveillance.  Balukh has told his lawyer, Olga Dinze, that he believes the camera even reaches the toilet. 
Balukh was frighteningly gaunt and frail back in June during the last 'court hearing', and he is still now losing weight.  The 47-year-old Crimean has long complained also of chest pain with that also ignored.
78-year-old Natalya Balukh saw her son  ... CLICK to read more 

Russia's War Against Ukraine 

Glen Grant: A real action is now needed in the Azov Sea

By Kateryna Kruk, Kyiv Post,  August 20, 2018

A view of the two breakwaters with lighthouses that form the entrance to the port in Mariupol, 800 kilometers southeast of Kyiv.  Mariupol activists and military experts warn that Russia could launch an amphibious assault from the Azov Sea, where Ukraine's defenses are the weakest.  Photo by Kostyantyn Chernichkin

Ukraine is in trouble. It has been in trouble for four years but the government has been playing a game of "Let's pretend it will go away." Now that game is becoming serious. The war in the Donbas shows no sign of lessening. In fact, in the last weeks, the pressure has been turned on again. No matter what nice words the Joint Headquarters uses about being in control, being attacked 45 times or more in one day with soldiers dying and seriously injured is the very opposite of control.

The fact is that in the ground war Russia has the initiative and attacks where and when it likes. But it is at sea that the pressure is now telling. Russia has taken over the Sea of Azov unopposed and is now moving her operations more seriously into the Black Sea. The aim is to totally disrupt the trade sea lines to Ukraine. She has half managed it already with Mariupol dying. Today we can do nothing at sea, as the neglect of the navy is now clear to the world and Russia knows it - and almost certainly planned it.

Now is not the time to judge who is at fault ... CLICK to read more


Ukraine has Law but Not Force on Its Side in Sea of Azov, Polyakov Says
By Paul Goble, Window on Eurasia - New Series, September 5, 2018

Staunton, September 4 - Leonid Polyakov, a former Ukrainian defense minister now at the Center for Research on the Army, Conversion and Disarmament, says that in the conflict with Russia over shipping on the Sea of Azov, Ukraine has law on its side but lacks both the military capacity and international support to respond adequately.     

There is no basis for optimism at least in the short term, he tells Kseniya Kirillova of Radio Svoboda. "Despite Ukraine's obvious legal correctness, we are not in a position to do something by ourselves. Moscow traditionally manipulates the legal field and misuses its force" ( ru.krymr.com/a/voyennye-eksperty-o-krizise-v-azovskom-more/29467674.html ).

Vladimir Putin isn't going to be constrained by the moral support of Ukraine's international partners or the judgments of international bodies unless and until that support and those judgments entail real consequences ... 

CLICK to read more 


Ukraine: On the front line of Europe's forgotten war 

After four years, and 10,000 deaths, the conflict with Russia in the east of the country has slipped off the west's political agenda
By David Bond and Roman Olearchyk in Avdiivka, Ukraine, Financial Times, Sept 6, 2018 

Staring straight ahead, Anton Akastyolov describes what it feels like to be fighting on the frontline of Russia's proxy war with the west. "Every day you think about death," the 23-year-old Ukrainian private says, standing in a shattered residential block on the edge of the eastern city of Avdiivka.  

This is Europe's forgotten war, a conflict that has claimed more than 10,000 lives ...  CLICK to read more


MadeinUkaineTechStartupEdition  is a monthly podcast series produced and hosted by Mike Buryk, a member of the U.S.-Ukraine Foundation's Board of Advisors, a long-time Foundation supporter and business development advisor.    Start listening today ... go to  https://soundcloud.com/ukrainetech/ .

MacPaw is an app development company with a number of successful macOS, iOS,   and Windows applications in their portfolio.  In this Made in Ukraine Tech Startup
Edition podcast, CEO Oleksandr Kosovan  talks about his company, its products and  plans for the future.  


Tom Birchard is a co-owner of Veselka, the iconic Ukrainian-American restaurant on the Lower East Side of New York City.  He talks about his many years there, how the neighborhood has changed and new plans for the restaurant. 


For additional information, contact Michael Buryk at:  

~ In Support of USUF's Economic Development Programming ~

Ukraine Edges Further Toward Crypto Legalization
By Tim Alper, cryptonews, A ugust 16, 2018
Source: iStock/Harvepino
Ukraine may be on the verge of officially recognizing cryptocurrencies as financial "instruments" - putting tokens on the same financial footing as stocks and bonds. 
Per media outlet Segodnye, the head of the National Commission for Securities and Stock Market (NSCOFF) Timur Khromaev, the chairman of Ukraine's National Securities and Stock Market Commission, and the head of the Committee on Development Strategy and Economic Analysis of Stock Markets, said, "[Cryptocurrencies] are more like financial instruments such as shares or bonds, rather than a means of payment. They are a means of accumulating [funds]. We plan to legally recognize cryptocurrencies as such - and allow [Ukrainian] people to invest and use them."
Khromaev stated that all of Ukraine's financial regulators have recently debated cryptocurrencies, and are on the verge of coming to a consensus. Khromaev has also been pushing for international counterparts to follow suit this year with pro-cryptocurrency and initial coin offering (ICO) measures ...  CLICK to read more  

NOTE:  This story also appeared in the newsletter of UGTI, Inc. 


News from the Ukrainian-American Environmental Association ...


6930 Carroll Avenue, #340; Takoma Park, MD 20912 ...    301-270-6477 x.6
ua_ea@yahoo.com ...   http://usukr-env.org ...    Twitter: Follow @UAEnvAssn

Ukraine's DTEK Energy Group Has Raised €90 Million from BayernLB and a Consortium of German Banks to Construct the 100-MW First Stage of the Primorskaya Wind Project in Eastern Zaporzhazhya, near the Sea of Azov :    Recharge News,   August 29, 2018


GE to Provide 26 of its 3.8-130-110HH Wind Turbines to the 100-MW Primorskaya Wind Energy Project and Arrange for the Installation/Commissioning of the Turbines to Power the Wind Farm:

Wind Energy and Electric Vehicle Magazine, August 28, 2018


Suzhou Akcome Metal Technology to Provide Rack System for Major Part of the Largest PV Solar Plant (246-MW) in Ukraine's Dnipropetrovsk Region:   PV Magazine, August 28, 2018


Canadian Company TIU May Build 50-100 MW of Solar Power Plant in the Odessa Region, Beginning in Fall 2018:

Ukraine Industrial Portal, by Maxim Ovcharenko, August 28, 2018


Myronivsky Hliboproduct (MHP) to Launch First Stage of a 10-MW Biogas Complex at Vinnytsia Poultry Farm by the End of 2018:
Open for Business, August 28, 2018


Two Solar Power Stations Were Commissioned in Chernelytsia and Sarniki in Ivano-Frankivsk Oblast:
Ukraine Industrial Portal, by Maxim Ovcharenko, August 27, 2018


Kamenets-Podilskyi Begins Operation of 500-kW Biogas Plant That Will Generate Electricity from Garbage:
Ukraine Industrial Portal, by Maxim Ovcharenko, August 27, 2018
 https://ecotown.com.ua/news/U-Kam-yanets-Podilskomu-zi-smittya-vyroblyatymetsya-2-5-mln-m3-biohazu-shchoroku  (in Ukrainian)   and http://saee.gov.ua/uk/news/2538 (in Ukrainian)


In Ukraine, Growing Energy Crops Is in Its Infancy and Can Increase by 250 Times - Could Replace at Least 5.5 Billion Cubic Meters of Natural Gas:  
Ukraine Industrial Portal, by Maxim Ovcharenko, August 25, 2018


A Ukrainian-Designed and Manufactured Rocket Engine Helped Successfully Place the European Space Agency's Earth Explorer Aeolus Satellite into Orbit - Will Aid the Wind Energy Industry by Measuring Ground Wind Speeds:  
Ukraine Business News, August 27, 2018
https://www.ubn.news/monday-august-26   and 


Kness Group to Build 400-MW Solar Panel Factory  in Vinnytsia, in Central Ukraine -  First 200-MW Section to Be Operational by the End of This Year:   
PV Magazine, by Emiliano Bellini, August 23, 2018


Ruslana Signs Memorandum of Understanding with Ukraine's Foreign Ministry to Promote Renewable Energy, Attract Foreign Investments and Integrate Ukraine into International Projects:   
112.International, August 23, 2018

German Waste Processing Technology to Be Used by ECO-Standard 10 for a €100 Million Waste Disposal Plant Approved by the City Council of Drohobych in the Lviv Region - Heat From the Plant Will Also Warm Greenhouses:

Ukraine Business News, August 22, 2018 

Ten days of fun and inspiration.
How it felt to be an English language camp volunteer in Skadovsk 
By Dr. Peter Voitsekhovsky, U.S.-Ukraine Foundation
This is the second part of the field report from Dr. Peter Voitsekhovsky about his work at a children's summer camp for English study in Skadovsk, south of Kherson.   
We were a team of two volunteers: myself and my daughter Jamie, who attends a high school in Maryland. After three days of training in Kyiv, we arrived in Skadovsk to serve in the 10-day English camp for kids. The camp was organized by Global Office in Kyiv and hosted by a secondary school in Skadovsk named the Academy of Creative Learning.

Skadovk enchanted us. It is a small and rather isolated town. Miles of steppes separate it from the nearest villages. But it is a cozy place to live in, with a long waterfront walkway and spacious parks. In summer, it is a vibrant community; the number of residents nearly triples due to holiday makers that come from many parts of Ukraine. This place is known for its shallow beaches, deemed perfect for family vacation with little kids. Nowhere else did I see an evening dancing club where only kids are charged an entrance fee, while grown-ups come in for free as their escorts.
Looking back, our task seemed next to impossible. We only had ten 3-hour sessions to deliver on rather challenging expectations stated in the program goals, such as "empower the development of the young generation of Ukrainians" and give them "more opportunities to change the course of history." We did not know how much English the kids would understand. We were not sure what resources we would have at the school. We had never met the team of local teachers we were going to work with. Last but not least, we had no experience in the methodology promoted by Global Office: game-centered learning that is supposed to be easy and fun. The demos during the training gave us some idea, but not enough to fill me with confidence and relieve my anxiety.
Here is what we discovered. 1) The school had all necessary resources -- including wi-fi, a multimedia projector, and even a sound system with microphones on par with conference rooms of Washington think tanks. 2) We met a team of skilled and dedicated teachers who had planned a diverse and entertaining program for the camp. They spared no effort to make it fun for the kids. 3) We discovered that the biggest treasure of the project were the kids themselves. They were intelligent, responsive, and enormously friendly.
Farewell Party

Like other international volunteers who we talked with, I understood the most important thing about this program. You just open up your heart to these kids, like they open their hearts to you. The rest adds on. That was the magic of inspiration we gave to one another. Which was exactly what the program anticipated. We played various games, we sang funny songs, we worked in teams while cooking and making sand sculptures. We traveled together to a "Window on America" library in Kherson that is supported by the U.S. Embassy. Together, we produced a video and painted a mural. My "cultural learning" conversations embraced a broad scope of themes from Columbus and George Washington to Mary Poppins with her "spoonful of sugar". We talked about American and Ukrainian schools, foods, and holidays. We chanted "Supercalifragilistickexpialidocious!"
We made bondings that will hopefully last for long. We hope to continue talking with those kids and their teachers remotely via Skype and other media during the school year.
In addition, here is a reflection written by my child and assistant, Jamie, who is 16. She begins 11th grade at Eleanor Roosevelt High School this fall.

Coloring the Sun Purple in Ukraine: A Reflection 
By Jamie Voytsekhovska

The motto of the GO Camp program is, "If you want to change the world, inspire a child." Volunteering at a GO camp and working with those kids has made the impact of that quote take root into my very soul. I realize that in America we live in a bubble of privilege, and we don't think much about it. This experience has helped me expand my worldview and learn more about myself and the world. I think I used to be a very cynical person and let the evils of 
the world drag me down, essentially letting them win as I grew discouraged and would feel that I couldn't do anything to make the world better. But after I worked with the kids in Skadovsk, I learned that we can truly change the world by educating and inspiring others. I was helping these kids expand their world, was showing them other cultures and how they are a part of a bigger world than they think. In turn, they taught me about the culture of Ukraine and allowed me to feel at home in this country where I was born. I have never felt closer to Ukraine than I have in the weeks when I worked and shared inspiration with those young Ukrainians.
Jamie with cooking team
I was instructed to only speak English around the kids, and pretend that I do not speak any Ukrainian or Russian. This was to make sure they step out of their comfort zone and make an effort to speak English in order to form a connection with me. So, this was good for their learning, but it also was setting a language barrier between me and them. This has taught me a profound lesson: the only thing that divides is what we allow to divide us.
I was able to form meaningful connections with students despite language barriers. We could find that we speak a common language of art or music, or perhaps we share the same struggles with fear of mistakes or perfectionism. Many children speak a common language of benevolent mischief. Another simple but important lesson that can and should be applied to the rest of the world: people are the same everywhere. We are all driven by the same desires: to be loved, learn, and improve ourselves. I could see the same types of personalities among those kids as I see in my own classes at school. From "class clown" personas to shy kids, people behave similarly, all driven by shared pursuit of happiness. Not only has this lesson helped me connect with more people, but it has helped me rid myself of the discord brought onto me by my bicultural identity.
Born in Ukraine and raised in America from age 6, I am often considered too Ukrainian to be American, and too American to be Ukrainian. Thus, I end with a sense of being alienated, and I find refuge in blending more deeply into American culture. This summer camp experience allowed me to apply both of my cultural identities to form bonds with the Ukrainian students. It has also made me realize that these two cultures do not have to be mutually exclusive.
Despite the similarity in human nature and personalities, I do see how the difference in cultures and the teaching styles of schools affect students' development as individuals and what values are ingrained into them. In American schools, children are taught their rights and responsibilities, and encouraged to be creative and think for themselves. In Ukrainian schools, there are specters of Soviet values of order and obedience lurking in the hallways - students are taught to memorize and do things correctly, above all. For example, one day in the camp the students were told to draw and present imaginary animals. These kids had an extremely hard time thinking outside the box. "Think of anything you want - a dragon, a sea monster, a unicorn." I told them. They settled on sea monster. Their sea monster was "a very big whale with shark teeth". "Does it have any magical powers? What does it do?" I asked, prompting them to think creatively. It did not have any magical powers, it was simply a very big whale with shark teeth. Compare this to American schools: I distinctly remember how I was coloring a picture in my first grade. I turned to the boy next to me, who had colored his sun purple and his sky green. "That's not how it's supposed to be!" I try to explain to him. His response was a shrug and an offhand comment - "But wouldn't it be cooler if it was?" The biggest difference between Ukrainian and American schools is this. In America, the sun is purple, or blue, or even green, if you want. But in Ukraine, the sun is always a perfect, yellow circle. I will continue to try to do my part to change that, and help the Ukrainian youth move this country forward towards prosperous creativity, to allow us all to thrive.


The U.S.-Ukraine Foundation seeks a Program Assistant to help with office management, communications, event planning, and other administrative functions.
The Program Assistant will work with Foundation staff in Washington, DC and Ukraine.
The Program Assistant will have wide ranging responsibilities, must be flexible and willing to assume varied duties and projects.
Bachelor's degree
Ukrainian/English language skills very helpful
Effective oral, written and interpersonal skills to effectively interact with all levels of staff, U.S. and foreign government personnel, NGO community and the public
Capacity to work both independently and as a member of a team
Working knowledge of word processing and spreadsheet applications
Organizational skills and attention to detail
Ability to prioritize and manage multiple tasks simultaneously
Send your materials to the U.S.-Ukraine Foundation at email: info@usukraine.org.
No phone calls, please.

The New York Times Travel Show
January 25-27, 2019 at the Jacob K. Javits Center, NYC

The U.S.-Ukraine Foundation Plans to Represent Ukraine, again!
USUF represented Ukraine at the 2017 & 2018 New York Times Travel Shows.
Join us in 2019!

The  2019 New York Times Travel Show will be one of the most successful international celebration of travel, food and culture ever!  Mark your calendars for the 2019  Travel Show, which will take place from January 25 - 27. 
Many of the past exhibitors and sponsors have already indicated they will be reserving their same space and more than 100 new organizations have expressed interest or already signed up to exhibit at the event.  The 2018   Show was one of the most-highly attended Travel Show ever.  The New York Times Travel Show, the largest of its kind in North America, is widely regarded as the "gateway show" for the world's travel destinations wishing to present to the U.S. market.

Note:  The U.S.-Ukraine Foundation welcomes inquiries from travel agencies, hotels, airlines, restaurants, conference centers, etc., for trade show representation. 

For more information:  Contact us! 
Email:  info@usukraine.org    Tel: 202-789-4467









~ World Premiere ~
Baba Babee Skazala
at the
Fall 2018 New Jersey Film Festival

New Brunswick, NJ - October 7, 2018 -   Baba Babee Skazala  [Grandmother Told  Grandmother], a documentary film by Verona, NJ resident, and first-time filmmaker, Matej Silecky, will have its World Premiere at the Fall 2018 New Jersey Film Festival, Sunday October 7, 2018, 7 PM. The screening will be held at Voorhees Hall #105, 71 Hamilton Street/College Avenue Campus, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ. It will be followed by a Q&A session with Matej and others involved in the production of the film (others TBA). Tickets are available in advance; details at www.njfilmfest.com.

Baba Babee Skazala tells the little-known story of Ukrainian children torn from their homes in the crush between the Nazi and Soviet fronts in World War II. Spending their childhood as refugees in Europe, these inspiring individuals later immigrated to the United States, creating new homes and communities through their grit, faith and deep belief in the importance of preserving culture. It is Matej's first film, and is the culmination of over 35 oral history interviews uncovering the experiences of these survivors.
Other New Jerseyans who were part of the team include: Rutgers University professor, Dr. Alexander Motyl, who provides historic background for the film; Cinematographer (select locations) and former Verona, NJ resident, Evan Yee; Producer and long-time Verona resident, Julie Parker. All the works selected for the festival were screened by a panel of 15 judges including media professionals, journalists, students, and academics. These judges selected the 22 Finalist/Official Selection films which will be publicly screened at our Festival. These were selected from over 507 works submitted by filmmakers from around the world.

Matej is the Founding Director of Kitsune Tale Productions, LLC, but is perhaps best known for being the Runner Up on ITV's "Dancing On Ice" 2018, with his celebrity partner, Brooke Vincent of ITV's "Coronation Street." Matej earned a B.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies from UC Berkeley and a minor in Theater, Dance & Performance Studies. He developed Baba Babee Skazala while at UC Berkeley, and is excited it is having its premiere in his home state.

* ************************************************************



The 2018 Advanced Bioeconomy Leadership Conference on the Global Bioeconomy  (ABLC Global) will be held November 7-9, 2018 at the Hotel Nikko in San Francisco.

ABLC Global will be home to 17 distinctive Summits, Workshops and Forums and three organizations under one big tent. Dozens of international high-level delegations and the focus and energy of ABLC and its "Networking Like Crazy" focus on cooperation, collaboration, partnership, deal-making and trend-spotting.

The Speakers, the dates, the venue, and a special 2 for 1 opportunity to maximize ROI -  perhaps the single broadest, most global event ever organized in the advanced bioeconomy - all ready for you at The Digest online


The U.S.-Ukraine Foundation's new website has been created by Steven May, Jr. and his talented team associated with Ask the Egghead.   Steven May Jr., aka lead egghead at Ask the Egghead, has over 25 years of career experience that spans multiple business models and sectors.  If you need website support, Ask the Egghead!  

Contact Information

Email:  info@usukraine.org    Tel:  202-789-4467    Fax:  202-478-0369    Website:  https://www.usukraine.org/
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