Учасники блокади звинувачують поліцію в організації нападу біля станції Кривий Торець

У «Штабі блокади торгівлі з окупантами» заявили про трьох постраждалих під час нападу на блокувальників біля станції Кривий Торець. Вони покладають відповідальність за його організацію на поліцію та керівництво МВС. Відповідне повідомлення розміщено на сторінці штабу у Facebook.

За словами учасників блокади, їх атакували у двох точках – у Бахмуті та Кривому Торці на Донеччині, однак у першому випадку вдалося уникнути силового протистояння. Обидва інциденти вони називають провокаціями з метою змусити їх застосувати зброю і «отримати моральне право на силовий розгін редуту».

«Спочатку з’явилось телебачення, потім – групи «бабусь» із закликами припинити блокаду. Потім, під прикриттям «бабусь», була спроба силового захоплення підготованими групами «тітушок». До місць інцидентів заздалегідь були підігнані пожежні машини та карети швидкої допомоги. Поліція в інцидент не втручалась», – йдеться у повідомленні.

28 лютого у поліції Донеччини повідомили про затримання 37 осіб, які здійснили напад на учасників блокування залізниці.

Цього ж дня міністр внутрішніх справ Арсен Аваков закликав керівників Антитерористичного центру ухвалити рішення для зняття блокади.

27 лютого з боку ватажків угруповань «ДНР» та «ЛНР» надійшов ультиматум: якщо блокаду не знімуть до 1 березня, вони будуть вживати заходів у відповідь. Зокрема, йдеться про «націоналізацію» підприємств.

У СБУ вважають, тим часом, що «націоналізацію» сепаратисти оголосять у будь-якому випадку.

У січні активісти, серед яких депутати Верховної Ради та люди, що називають себе ветеранами АТО, розпочали блокаду деяких ділянок залізниці з вимогою припинити, за їхніми словами, торгівлю з окупованими районами Донбасу. У Києві після цього відбулося кілька акцій протесту зі схожими вимогами. Учасники блокади на Донеччині неодноразово заявляли про підготовку штурму їхніх позицій, які вони називають «редутами», силовики ці заяви спростовували.

15 лютого уряд ухвалив рішення про запровадження надзвичайних заходів в енергетиці на місяць, починаючи з 17 лютого.

 

СБУ: Захарченко визнає, що «ДНР» насправді зацікавлена у блокаді

У Службі безпеки України оприлюднили аудіозапис, як вони стверджують, розмови між ватажком угруповання «ДНР» Олександром Захарченком та його підлеглим Дмитром Трапєзниковим. У записі чути, як співрозмовники вирішують оголосити блокаду у відповідь безвідносно до того, чи припинять блокування залізниці з українського боку.

В СБУ вважають, що блокаду залізниці на Донбасі угруповання «ДНР» хоче використати для «націоналізації» підприємств, які залишилися на їхніх територіях, йдеться у повідомленні на сайті відомства.

Напередодні 27 лютого на «офіційних» інформаційних ресурсах угруповань «ДНР» та «ЛНР» синхронно була оприлюднена спільна заява ватажків цих угруповань – Олександра Захарченка та Ігоря Плотницького: «Якщо до 00:00 середи (1 березня 2017 року) блокада не буде знята, то ми запровадимо зовнішнє управління на всіх підприємствах української юрисдикції, які працюють в «ДНР» і «ЛНР». Ми припинимо постачати вугілля до України».

28 лютого у поліції Донеччини повідомили про затримання 37 осіб, які здійснили напад на учасників блокування залізниці.

Цього ж дня міністр внутрішніх справ Арсен Аваков закликав керівників Антитерористичного центру ухвалити рішення для зняття блокади.

У січні активісти, серед яких депутати Верховної Ради та люди, що називають себе ветеранами АТО, розпочали блокаду деяких ділянок залізниці з вимогою припинити, за їхніми словами, торгівлю з окупованими районами Донбасу. У Києві після цього відбулося кілька акцій протесту зі схожими вимогами. Учасники блокади на Донеччині неодноразово заявляли про підготовку штурму їхніх позицій, які вони називають «редутами», силовики ці заяви спростовували.

15 лютого уряд ухвалив рішення про запровадження надзвичайних заходів в енергетиці на місяць, починаючи з 17 лютого.

 

ГПУ завершила заочне розслідування щодо начальника берегових військ Чорноморського флоту Росії – Сарган

Генеральна прокуратура звершила заочне розслідування та склала обвинувальний акт у провадженні щодо начальника берегових військ Чорноморського флоту Росії Олександра Острикова, повідомила у Facebook речниця українського генпрокурора Лариса Сарган.

За її словами, Остриков обвинувачується, зокрема, в посяганні на територіальну цілісність України, державній зраді та веденні агресивної війни, за свою участь у анексії Криму в 2014 році.

«Крім того, за даними слідства, Остриков особисто схиляв командирів військових частин, дислокованих у Феодосії та Керчі, до вчинення державної зради», – написала Сарган.

У жовтні минулого року Печерський райсуд Києва дозволив Генпрокуратурі провести спеціальне досудове розслідування у кримінальному провадженні проти заступника головнокомандувача Військово-морського флоту Росії Олександра Федотенкова та начальника Берегових військ Чорноморського флоту Росії Олександра Острикова.

У ГПУ зазначили, що за такі злочини передбачене покарання у вигляді довічного ув’язнення.

У 2014 році Росія анексувала український Крим. Київ і Захід не визнають цього і вважають півострів й надалі українською територією. Росія ж називає це відновленням історичної справедливості.

Україна і Захід звинувачують Росію у підтримці проросійських сепаратистів на Донбасі. Москва ці звинувачення відкидає, заявляючи, що на Донбасі немає російських військових, але є «добровольці».

Cathedral Controversy ‘Symbolic’ as Russia Marks Russian Revolution Centenary

An iconic cathedral in Russia’s Saint Petersburg has seen weekly protests from residents opposed to the government’s decision to turn over the cathedral’s museum to the Russian Orthodox Church.  The move comes at a symbolic time as Russia marks the 100th anniversary of the Russian Revolution, which overthrew the monarchy and led to church property being nationalized under an atheist, communist state.  VOA Correspondent Daniel Schearf reports from Saint Petersburg.

Sistine Chapel Gets Full Digital Treatment for Future Restorations

The last time the entire Sistine Chapel was photographed for posterity, digital photography was in its infancy and words like pixels were bandied about mostly by computer nerds and NASA scientists.

Now, after decades of technological advances in art photography, digital darkrooms and printing techniques, a five-year project that will aid future restorations has left the Vatican Museums with 270,000 digital frames that show frescoes by Michelangelo and other masters in fresh, stunning detail.

“In the future, this will allow us to know the state of every centimeter of the chapel as it is today, in 2017,” said Antonio Paolucci, former head of the museums and a world-renowned expert on the Sistine.

Michelangelo’s ceiling frescoes include one of the most famous scenes in art – the arm of a gentle, bearded God reaching out to give life to Adam.

The Renaissance master finished the ceiling in 1512 and painted the massive “Last Judgement” panel behind the altar between 1535 and 1541.

The last time all Sistine frescoes were photographed was between 1980 and 1994, during a landmark restoration project that cleaned them for the first time in centuries.

The new photos were taken for inclusion in a new three-volume, 870-page set that is limited to 1,999 copies and marketed to libraries and collectors.

The set, which costs about 12,000 euros ($12,700), was a joint production of the Vatican Museums and Italy’s Scripta Maneant high-end art publishers.

Post-production computer techniques included “stitching” of frames that photographers took while working out of sight for 65 nights from 7 p.m. to 2 a.m., when the chapel where popes are elected is closed.

The project was known to only to a few people until it was unveiled in the chapel on Friday night.

The set includes the entire chapel, including the mosaic floor and 15th century frescoes by artists who have long languished in Michelangelo’s giant shadow.

More than 220 pages are printed in 1:1 scale, including ‘The Creation of Adam’ and Jesus’ face from the Last Judgement. Each volume weighs about 9 kg (20 pounds) and fold-out pages measure 60 by 130 cm ( 24 by 51 inches).

The old photos taken during the last restoration were done with film.

“We used special post-production software to get the depth, intensity, warmth and nuance of colours to an accuracy of 99.9 percent,” said Giorgio Armaroli, head of Scripta Maneant.

“Future restorers will use these as their standards,” he said, adding that each page was printed six times.

Brush strokes are clearly visible as are the “borders” delineating sections, known as “giornate,” or days. Since frescoes are painted on wet plaster, artists prepare just enough for what they can complete in each session.

The photographers used a 10-meter-high (33 feet) portable scaffold and special telescopic lens. The results are now stored in a Vatican server holding 30 terabytes of information.

($1 = 0.9450 euros)

France’s Disillusioned Farmers Turn to Le Pen

France’s presidential contenders will this week make mandatory campaign stops at the annual Paris farm fair as polls show farmers increasingly tempted by the far-right’s Marine Le Pen when they even bother to vote at all.

Though only a fraction of the population still works in the farm sector, voters remain attached to the country’s agrarian roots, making the annual agriculture fair a fixture of the political calendar.

“Lots of us farmers are pinning our hopes on Marine,” dairy and poultry farmer Mickael Thomas said as he set up for the nine-day-long show. “We see her with farmers more than other candidates.”

Polls now show Le Pen placing first in a first round of France’s presidential election in April and losing in the second round to a single candidate from the centre-left or center-right.

But that race has tightened, raising the prospect that the National Front leader could become the first far-right politician to win power through the ballot box in Western Europe since World War II.

Le Pen is due on Tuesday to start the parade of politicians at the fair as the first major candidate to visit this year.

After years of crisis in the sector and perceived indifference from other candidates, Le Pen’s anti-EU anti-globalization rhetoric strikes a chord with many farmers, once faithful voters for mainstream conservatives.

A Cevipof poll for Le Monde newspaper published on Feb. 16 showed that 35 percent of farmers who plan to vote will back Le Pen in the election, compared to 26 percent of the general population.

Conservative Francois Fillon and centrist Emmanuel Macron are both on 20 percent among farmers, close to their ratings overall.

The same poll also showed farmers are increasingly giving up on politicians altogether, with 51 percent of the 300 surveyed saying they would not vote.

“Farmers were always the French people who voted the most.

They voted like they went to mass,” said sociologist Francois Purseigle. “What’s surprising about this survey is that they might not go.”

The mascot of this year’s farm show, a six-year-old dairy cow called “Fine”, hails from an organic farm in the western French town of Plesse – historically Socialist territory.

But even here, the National Front is making inroads. The party’s vote more than tripled in December 2015 regional elections compared with the previous poll in 2010.

Dairy farming is vital to the local economy but has struggled since 2015 as plummeting prices, the end of EU quotas and Russian sanctions inspired by the Ukraine crisis hit hard.

“We don’t have faith anymore,” a representative for the FNSEA farmers’ union in the region, Yoann Vetu, said.

“We know a thing or two about crises and we can’t get out of them. So the politicians might talk about it, but they don’t act,” he said.

While Vetu believes Le Pen’s protectionist policies would hurt the sector, local FN representative and struggling dairy farmer Olivier du Gourlay said his friends were turning to the party in increasing numbers.

“We’re asking ourselves, what’s going on? Because we really have been abandoned,” he said.

Willie Nelson, Kenny Chesney, More to Honor Merle Haggard

The late Country music star Merle Haggard will be honored a year after his death with an all-star concert featuring his longtime friend and duet partner Willie Nelson as well as Kenny Chesney, Miranda Lambert, John Mellencamp and more.

 

“Sing Me Back Home: The Music of Merle Haggard” will be held in Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena on April 6, which would have been the songwriter’s 80th birthday.

 

Additional performers include Loretta Lynn, Hank Williams Jr., The Avett Brothers, Alison Krauss, Dierks Bentley, Ronnie Dunn, Warren Haynes, Jamey Johnson, Kacey Musgraves, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Lucinda Williams, Ben Haggard, John Anderson, Connie Smith and Bobby Bare. Tickets go on sale March 3.

 

Keith Wortman, CEO of Blackbird Presents, which has produced tributes to John Lennon, Kris Kristofferson and Gregg Allman, said Nelson originally came up with the idea for a tribute concert and Haggard’s wife, Theresa, and his son, Ben, helped select the artists to be included. Haggard and Nelson recorded several albums together, including “Pancho & Lefty,” and Haggard’s last released album, “Django and Jimmie,” in 2015.

 

Haggard died April 6 on his 79th birthday after a career spanning five decades and dozens of iconic hits, including “Okie from Muskogee,” “Mama Tried,” “Hungry Eyes,” “Today I Started Loving You Again” and such blue collar chronicles as “If We Make It Through December” and “Workin’ Man Blues.”

Ursula K. Le Guin, Ann Patchett Voted into Arts Academy

Not even an honorary National Book Award kept Ursula K. Le Guin from being surprised by her latest tribute: membership in the American Academy of Arts and Letters.

 

“My reputation was made as a writer of fantasy and science fiction, a literature that has mostly gone without such honors,” she told The Associated Press recently.

 

Known for such classics as “The Left Hand of Darkness” and “The Dispossessed,” Le Guin has won numerous science fiction and fantasy awards, but only in recent years has she received more literary recognition, notably a National Book Award medal in 2014. The arts academy, an honorary society with a core membership of 250 writers, artists, composers and architects, once shunned “genre” writers such as Le Guin. Even such giants as science fiction writer Ray Bradbury and crime novelist Elmore Leonard never got in.

 

Academy member Michael Chabon, the Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist, advocated for Le Guin.

 

“As a deviser of worlds, as a literary stylist, as a social critic and as a storyteller, Le Guin has no peer,” he wrote in his recommendation, shared with the AP, that she be admitted. “From the time of her first published work in the mid-1960s, she began to push against the confines of science fiction, bringing to bear an anthropologist’s acute eye for large social textures and mythic structures, a fierce egalitarianism and a remarkable gift of language, without ever renouncing the sense of wonder and the spirit of play inherent in her genre of origin.”

 

The 87-year-old Le Guin is one of 14 new core members, the academy told the AP. Others include fiction writers Junot Diaz, Ann Patchett, Amy Hempel and Colum McCann, former U.S. poet laureate Kay Ryan and fellow poets Henri Cole and Edward Hirsch. The academy also voted in the artists Mary Heilmann, Julie Mehretu and Stanley Whitney, architect Annabelle Selldorf and composers Melinda Wagner and Julia Wolfe.

 

Three foreign honorary members were added: authors Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie and Zadie Smith and composer Kaija Saariaho.

 

The arts academy was founded in 1898, with members since ranging from Henry James and William Dean Howells to Chuck Close and Stephen Sondheim. The new inductees will be formally welcomed at a ceremony at the New York-based academy in May, where academy member Joyce Carol Oates will deliver the centennial Blashfield Foundation keynote address. Previous speakers have included Helen Keller, Robert Frost and Robert Caro.

 

Patchett, author of the acclaimed “Bel Canto” and most recently “Commonwealth,” said she had tears in her eyes after learning she had been selected. Years earlier, she had been given a prize by the academy, presented to her by John Updike.

 

“They could have just given me the Getting-To-Eat-Lunch-With John-Updike award and that would have been the biggest thrill of my life,” she told the AP. “This is an institution where all of my heroes gather. I am very moved that they’ve invited me in.”

 

Diaz, winner of the Pulitzer Prize for his novel “The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao,” told the AP that he was surprised to get into the academy, in part because he was informed in an old-fashioned way – by letter.

 

“No one sends letters anymore,” he wrote recently in a more prevalent form of communication, email.

 

Le Guin lives in Portland, Oregon, and will not be attending the May ceremony. For a time, she didn’t even know she had been chosen. Blame it on the risks of sending paper letters.

 

“[T]he academy’s written invitation never got to me,” she said, adding that she feared comparisons to Bob Dylan, who took more than two weeks to personally respond to winning the Nobel Prize for literature. “I found out they’d been waiting days or weeks for a reply. I thought: ‘Oh, no, they’ll think I’ve been pulling a Dylan on them!'”

Court Witness: Turkey Jails Reporter from Germany’s Die Welt Paper

Turkish authorities on Monday arrested a reporter for a prominent German newspaper on charges of propaganda in support of a terrorist organization and inciting the public to violence, according to a court witness.

Authorities initially detained Deniz Yucel, a correspondent for the Die Welt newspaper, on Feb. 14 after he reported on emails that a leftist hacker collective had purportedly obtained from the private account of Berat Albayrak, Turkey’s energy minister and the son-in-law of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

On Monday, an Istanbul court ordered Yucel, a dual citizen of Turkey and Germany, jailed pending trial, a witness at the court told Reuters. He is the first German reporter to be held in a widespread crackdown that has followed the failed July 15 coup in Turkey and frequently targeted the media.

More than 100,000 people have been sacked or suspended from Turkey’s police, military, civil service and private sector since the failed coup and tens of thousands arrested. Ankara says the measures are necessary given the security threats it faces.

But Turkey’s allies, including Germany, fear Erdogan is using the purges as a pretext to curtail dissent. Relations between the NATO allies have been strained by the coup, but Germany desperately needs Turkey for its part in a deal to stop the flow of migrants into Europe.

Yucel’s arrest could also put German Chancellor Angela Merkel into an awkward position less than seven months before what promises to be a tightly contested election in September.

In a statement, Merkel criticized the move as “bitter and disappointing” and called it “disproprortionate.”

“The German government expects that the Turkish judiciary, in its treatment of the Yucel case, takes account of the high value of freedom of the press for every democratic society. We will continue to insist on a fair and legal treatment of Deniz Yucel and hope that he will soon regain his freedom,” she said.

Germany’s foreign minister, Sigmar Gabriel, was even more harsh in his assessment of the case, saying it showed in “glaring light” the differences in the two countries in evaluating freedom of press and freedom of opinion.

‘White Helmets’ Rescuers Say Oscar Win Shows People Care About Syrians Under Fire

The Oscar awarded to a documentary about the daily lives of volunteers of a Syrian search and rescue group called the “White Helmets” shows people care about its mission to help civilians caught in Syria’s civil war, the group said on Monday.

The White Helmets operate a rescue service in rebel-held parts of Syria, which have been subjected to fierce bombardment by the government and Russia’s air force during the country’s civil war that has leveled whole city districts.

Syria’s government under President Bashar al-Assad has accused the group of being a front for al Qaeda and of faking footage of the aftermath of air strikes for propaganda purposes, charges the White Helmets deny.

“I am absolutely delighted that we won an Oscar — it show us that people care about us and the people we serve,” said Khaled Khatib, a volunteer and cinematographer on the film, which won an Oscar for best short documentary at Sunday’s award ceremony.

“We are honored that ‘The White Helmets’ film has received an Oscar,” Raed Saleh, head of the Syria Civil Defense, said in a statement posted on Twitter early on Monday. “But we are not happy to do what we do. We abhor the reality we live in,” he added.

The 40-minute Netflix film, directed by British documentary-maker Orlando von Einsiedel, follows volunteers as they conduct search and rescue operations in Aleppo and undergo training in Turkey.

But members of the “White Helmets” could not attend the awards ceremony in Los Angeles because of passport issues and air strikes in Syria, the group said in a statement.

Both Saleh and Khatib were given visas by the United States for the Oscars ceremony in Los Angeles.

However, in a statement early on Sunday, the White Helmets said Saleh would not be able to leave his work because of the high intensity of air strikes while Khatib could not attend because Syria’s government had cancelled his passport.

“We hope this film and the attention helps move the world to stop the bloodshed in Syria,” Saleh said.

The nearly six-year-long conflict in Syria has killed at least 300,000 people and displaced millions, according to groups that monitor the war.