Analyst: “…we are confident that Putin would rather expand his war against the West than withdraw from Crimea. In reality, he has no other choice considering that his entire legacy and credibility with the Russian public largely depends on his commitment to keeping Crimea under his control. Withdrawing from Crimea would mean surrendering his presidency.”


Photo: Putin addresses concert at Sevastopol to celebrate illegal annexation of the Crimean Peninsula of Ukraine.


It is indicative of the nature of Moscow’s threat to the nations around it that the only two countries in the world whose national anthems begin with the assertion that our people and state have not yet died are neighbors of Russia, Poland and Ukraine; and, thus, it is intriguing that one Ukrainian deputy is now pushing for new and more affirmative language.


Analyst: “We do not expect consumer inflation to slow down significantly until 2H18, when the positive effects of tight monetary policy amid increased food supply start to show up. CPI will increase 8.9% YTD, or 11.8% yoy in 2018, according to our projections.”


Analyst: “The conventional wisdom is that the Hungarian government has been manipulating these ethnic tensions to boost its poll ratings ahead of the parliamentary elections to be held on April 8.”


Poroshenko's comments came after NATO updated its website to include Ukraine alongside three other countries -- Bosnia-Herzegovina, Georgia, and Macedonia -- that have declared their aspirations to NATO membership


Photo: Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko (left) and NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg in Brussels in November

Analyst: “… we treat Poroshenko’s continued resistance to ‘foreign donors,’ as he referred to them (as opposed to ‘Western partners’), as a very disturbing signal that threatens the chances on getting the IMF loan tranche this year.”


Analyst: “We don’t expect any success at a ceasefire in Donbas until a UN peacekeeping mission is agreed upon. And we don’t expect a UN peacekeeping mission to be agreed upon in the next two years.”


The conflict in the Luhansk and Donetsk regions has killed more than 10,300 people since it erupted in April 2014, after Russia fomented unrest across much of Ukraine following the ouster of Moscow-friendly President Viktor Yanukovych.


Photo: Ukrainian servicemen ride atop armored vehicles on the outskirts of Donetsk.


Analyst: “Hopefully, improved economic growth in the following months will boost revenues and prevent the government from resorting to bad practices.”


Analyst: “The crackdown only heightens the tensions between the current government and the pro-Western opposition, which will only intensify as elections draw nearer. The conflict has the potential to destabilize the situation in the country further.”


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