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Wednesday, 26 October 2016


Is Ukraine arming Georgia illegally?

2009-01-14 09:49

Reports have appeared in the media that illegal Ukrainian supplies of ammunition and missiles have resumed through Bulgaria. These supplies are worth millions of dollars.


3/2/1/1321.jpegThe publication Free Press has reported this sensational news, quoting a source in the Russian intelligence services. Apparently a ship has arrived in the Georgian port of Poti with an illegal consignment of Ukrainian ammunition worth about $5 million. Another vessel with military cargo worth about $6 million is expected in Butumi (originating from the same place). Ukrainian "businessmen" are preparing an even bigger deal, worth approximately $100 million - the talk is of a delivery of medium-range air-defense missile systems to the Georgian army.

On the whole, the format of illegal supplies to Georgia is well-known among the underground arms trade. An intermediary was tracked down in Bulgaria - according to operational information from the Main Intelligence Directorate, it was the former head of the military and economic service of the country's Defence Ministry, Colonel Hristo Stanimirov. It was he who provided two fake certificates allowing the importing of "Igla" anti-aircraft missile systems and missiles for "Fagot" anti-tank systems from Ukraine.

The former chairman of Ukraine's Security Service Vladimir Radchenko made an apt statement about Ukraine's arms trade on the Free Press website: "The psychological determination to "get involved in intrigues" doesn't come to any good". As we know, such an attempt by President Yushchenko (albeit on legal grounds) to arm Saakashvili, and also to earn a bit extra for himself, turned out badly for Ukraine. To begin with, it led to a loss of more than $2 billion from the budget (the difference between the actual takings for the weapons that were sold and the money that ended up in the state coffers). Then it turned into a high-profile political scandal. And finally, in the view of a series of politicians, it led to an increase in the cost of gas for Ukraine.

This was argued, in particular, by the vice-president of the Ukrainian association of political psychologists Viktor Rybachenko, speaking at a round table in Kyiv devoted to the "gas question".

"The price of 418 dollars that Russia is proposing is a mixture of business interests and revenge," he said. "According to its business interests, Russia has always wanted to increase the price of gas, but it needed to find a psychological reason to explain this price increase." In his opinion, Yushchenko's position on the conflict in the Caucasus was able to serve as this very reason. And in particular, the issue of the sales of arms to Georgia.

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