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Ukraine hands back stolen paintings to Dutch museum
16 September 2016 - Kiev authorities handed over to the Netherlands on Friday five masterpieces stolen from a Dutch museum in 2005 and recovered in Ukraine earlier this year. The paintings -- part of a group of 24 works valued at 10 million euros when they went missing in 2005 -- were said in December to have been discovered in a villa in a pro-Russian separatist controlled area of eastern Ukraine. (more)

Ukrainian folk costumes showcased at fashion week in Kiev (Reuters video)
19 October 2015 - Long lost and often forgotten, traditional dress from Ukraine took centre stage at fashion week in Kiev. Twenty vintage folk outfits, some more than one hundred years old, were presented. It was part of a cultural project called 'The Roots' -- aimed at inspiring fashion designers to use more traditional elements in their work. Colourful headpieces and bold patterns represented various regions within Ukraine. (more)

Vintage folk costumes take center stage at Kiev fashion week
19 October 2015 - A collection of traditional Ukrainian costumes, borrowed from museums and private collections, was among the highlights of fashion week in Kiev. The show that was part of a cultural project called 'Vytoky' ('The Roots') to inspire local designers and raise awareness about traditional fashion. (more)

Marathon talks produce Ukraine peace deal; ceasefire Sunday
12 February 2015 - The peace deal reached Thursday for Ukraine, if it holds, would be a partial win for both Moscow and Kiev. Under the terms of the deal reached after 16 hours of talks between the Presidents of Russia, Ukraine, Germany, and France, the next step is to form a sizeable buffer zone between Ukrainian forces and Russia-backed rebels. Each side is to pull heavy weaponry back from the front line, creating a zone roughly 30-85 miles wide, depending on the weapon caliber. Despite the uncertainties, the agreement's initiators saw it as a step forward. (more)

Diplomatic push for Ukraine peace focus at Munich conference
6 February 2015 - Top world leaders, diplomats, and defense officials are converging on Munich for a security conference that comes amid a frantic diplomatic push to end the violence in eastern Ukraine. The meeting comes as France and Germany are pushing a peace plan reportedly incorporating proposals from Russia. (more)

Leaders agree on Ukrainian peace talks this week
22 December 2014 - Leaders of Ukraine, Russia, France, and Germany on Monday reached an agreement to call another round of Ukraine peace talks this week. Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko's office said the negotiations will be held in the Belarusian capital Minsk on Wednesday and Friday. Recent peace efforts have helped sharply reduce hostilities, and the conflicting parties are now discussing the pullout of heavy weapons. (more)

Ukrainian, Russian leaders sound optimistic note
17 October 2014 - Russian and Ukrainian leaders sounded optimistic after marathon, Europe-brokered talks Friday, signalling progress on both a definitive peace settlement in Ukraine and a gas dispute that threatens to disrupt supplies to Europe this winter. While Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Ukrainian counterpart Petro Poroshenko stopped short of declaring a breakthrough, they both spoke with renewed confidence. The fighting in eastern Ukraine between pro-Russian rebels and government troops began a month after Russia annexed the peninsula of Crimea, killing more than 3,600 people, according to the UN. The West, in return, imposed economic sanctions, which Putin is eager to see lifted. (more)

Ukraine, Russia central bankers quip, shake hands in Washington
11 October 2014 - Female central bankers from Ukraine and its bitter rival Russia took the stage together in Washington on Saturday and described differing fallout from the conflict in eastern Ukraine. Their governments in Kiev and Moscow may be at odds, but Valeria Hontareva, governor of the Central Bank of Ukraine, and Ksenia Yudayeva, deputy governor of the Central Bank of Russia, managed to joke about the irony of their encounter on a panel on the sidelines of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund meetings -- and to shake hands afterwards. (more)

Ukraine: Ceasefire being upheld on both sides
23 September 2014 - A ceasefire in east Ukraine is being upheld by both government troops and Russia-backed rebels, a senior Ukrainian official said Tuesday, in a first step toward enforcing a truce that has been riddled by repeated violations since it was imposed earlier this month. (more)

Kiev notes progress on eastern Ukraine ceasefire
22 September 2014 - Both government troops and pro-Russian rebels began withdrawing heavy artillery in the east of the country, Ukrainian officials said Monday, a significant step toward implementing an effective ceasefire in the region. Ukraine, Russia, and the Moscow-backed rebels last week signed an agreement to further the peace process by halting advances and pull back heavy artillery, creating a buffer zone between them. (more)

Success of Maharishi's Programmes
Short Summaries of Top Stories

Ukraine: Educators learn about the success of Consciousness-Based Education
25 July 2014 - A group of eight educators from Ukraine attended an international training course in Consciousness-Based Education at Maharishi European Research University (MERU) in the Netherlands. The Ukraine delegation was the largest group from any country participating in the training. Another group from Ukraine visited Maharishi University of Management in the USA. This and other news about growing interest in Consciousness-Based Education in Ukraine was reported at a recent conference in the Netherlands. (more)

US: Ukrainian delegation visits Maharishi School in Iowa
23 May 2014 - Maharishi School of the Age of Enlightenment in Iowa, USA, recently hosted a delegation from Ukraine. All of the six Ukrainians in the delegation practise Transcendental Meditation and hope the practice becomes widespread in their own country. Several commented on how much they liked nearby Maharishi Vedic City in particular because of the way the city was laid out according to Vedic principles and that the buildings were built according to Maharishi Vastu architectural designs. (more)

'A New Proven Way to Create Peace in Ukraine' - article featuring Invincible Defence Technology republished worldwide
21 March 2014 - The English-language version of an article titled 'A New Proven Way to Create Peace in Ukraine' continues to be picked up and reprinted worldwide. Two recent publications are Iran Almanac and Palm Tree Reports (Sierra Leone)--where the lead article headline featured on the home page currently reads: 'GLOBAL PEACE WITHOUT DEADLY CONFLICTS: A New Proven Way to Create Peace in Ukraine'. The article describes the 'scientifically verified, military field-tested approach to reducing turmoil known as Invincible Defense Technology (IDT).' The article also features a photo with the caption, 'Military personnel in Latin America, Africa, and Asia practise group Transcendental Meditation to help protect their nations.' (more)

A new proven way to create peace in Ukraine
4 March 2014 - During the last two months, Ukrainians have witnessed a highly volatile political situation unfolding in their country. Tensions continue rising as Russia intervenes in Crimea. World leaders search for ways to prevent tensions from further escalating. What can be done to find a peaceful solution to this serious crisis? Mykola L Didukh, PhD, Postdoctoral Fellow at the Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv, and Dr David Leffler, PhD, Executive Director of the Center for Advanced Military Science in the USA, report that many countries around the world have shown growing interest in a novel but scientifically verified, militarily field-tested approach to reducing turmoil. Among military circles worldwide, this approach is known as Invincible Defense Technology (IDT). The military of Ukraine has the opportunity today through IDT to prevent further turmoil and to create national security, invincibility, and peace. But the time to act is now. (more)

Ukraine: Creating coherence and harmony in collective consciousness for peace and unity in the nation
3 March 2014 - At this critical time for Ukraine, when the country is going through a major transformation which opens unprecedented possibilities for unfolding its vast potential, an initiative has been started to enliven the evolutionary power of natural law in collective consciousness, to secure a smooth and peaceful transition into a new era of progress, happiness, and unity for the nation. The project aims to create a wave of positivity, coherence, and harmony in collective consciousness through the scientifically proven, practical application of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi's Vedic Science and Technology. Efforts are underway to quickly establish a group of 100 practitioners of Transcendental Meditation and the Transcendental Meditation Sidhi Programme, in Kiev. The long term objective is to expand this group to 700--the required number (about the square root of 1% of the population) to create the Maharishi Effect of coherence and peace for the entire nation of 46 million citizens. (more)

South Africa radio interviews Dr David Leffler about Invincible Defence Technology to reduce violence in Ukraine
22 February 2014 - As political turmoil erupted in violence earlier this week in Kiev, Ukraine, Dr David Leffler, Executive Director of the Center for Advanced Military Science, was interviewed on the Voice of the Cape radio show, based in Capetown, South Africa. In the indepth interview, host Shafiq Morton focused on Invincible Defence Technology (IDT), the topic of Dr Leffler's recent editorial, 'Proven strategy to prevent turmoil in Ukraine', which was published in a number of venues in Ukraine, the USA, Canada, and Asia. Dr Leffler described IDT as a highly effective approach which has been successfully implemented in countries in Africa, Latin America, and the Middle East, and which scientific research has shown to reduce social stress and violence, even in war-torn areas. (more)

Proven strategy to prevent turmoil in Bosnia and Herzegovina: Croatian Information Centre reports on Invincible Defence Technology
15 February 2014 - 'In the 1990s, Bosnia and Herzegovina suffered severe violence and conflict. Tensions have risen again. . . . If tensions continue rising, their resulting turmoil might further escalate into war yet again,' write Major General Kulwant Singh (Indian Army, retired) and Dr David Leffler in the Croatian Information Centre. The authors go on to say, 'Further unrest could be prevented if the military of Bosnia and Herzegovina acts now and implements a proven strategy. A new technology of defense is available that has been scientifically shown to prevent unrest, conflict and create peace by harnessing the deepest level of nature's functioning. . . . Among military circles worldwide it is known as Invincible Defence Technology (IDT).' Maj. Gen. Singh leads an international group of generals and defence experts that advocates Invincible Defence Technology. (more)

Ukraine: Year's highlights include Consciousness-Based Education, heart-health benefits of Transcendental Meditation
29 July 2013 - In Ukraine this past year, the health benefits of Transcendental Meditation and Maharishi Ayur-Veda health care were highlighted, through the visit of Lothar Pirc, founder and managing director of the Maharishi Ayurveda Health Centre in Bad Ems, Germany. Mr Pirc gave a presentation on Maharishi Ayur-Veda to a large audience, and also held a press conference announcing important news from the American Heart Association. The AHA issued a scientific statement in April, published in the journal Hypertension, informing doctors that the Transcendental Meditation technique lowers blood pressure and recommending that TM may be considered in clinical practice for the prevention and treatment of hypertension. (more)

Ukraine: Leader of Cossacks welcomes president of Maharishi University of Management
12 July 2013 - In addition to meeting with educators during his visit to Ukraine this year, Dr Bevan Morris, President of Maharishi University of Management in the USA, also met with local practitioners of Transcendental Meditation. In the group was Volodymyr Mulyava, Honoured Getman, or leader, of the Ukraine Kozaks (Cossacks). Mr Mulyava practises Transcendental Meditation and holds the title Honoured President of the Maharishi Movement in Ukraine. Dr Morris described Mr Mulyava as a man of great insight and wisdom. (more)

Ukraine: Orthodox priest appointed national director of religion and culture for Maharishi's programmes
2 December 2011 - The organization offering Maharishi Mahesh Yogi's programmes in Ukraine has appointed archpriest of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, Yuri Tymoshchuk, its national director of religion and culture. Transcendental Meditation teachers and practitioners in Ukraine expressed confidence that the work of the Orthodox priest 'in this important position will bring prosperity and full implementation of the highest aspirations of religious and cultural integrity of every citizen of Ukraine and the whole country.' (more)

Short Summaries of Top Stories

A look at the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear disaster in numbers
25 April 2016 - Telling the story of Chernobyl in numbers 30 years later involves dauntingly large figures and others that are even more vexing because they're still unknown. A look at numbers that hint at the scope of the world's worst nuclear accident, the explosion and fire at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant on April 26, 1986: (more)

AP Exclusive: Ukraine children eat food tainted by Chernobyl
22 April 2016 - Viktoria Vetrova knows the risk her four children take in drinking milk from the family's two cows and eating dried mushrooms and berries from the forest. But the cash-strapped Ukrainian government canceled the local school lunch program for 350,000 children last year -- the only source of clean food in this village near Chernobyl. So rural families are resorting to milk and produce from land still contaminated by fallout from the world's worst nuclear accident three decades ago. Vetrova's 8-year-old son Bogdan suffers from an enlarged thyroid, a condition which studies have linked to radioactivity. 'We are aware of the dangers, but what can we do?' said Vetrova, standing in her kitchen after pouring a glass of milk. 'There is no other way to survive.' Vetrova's family and thousands of others are caught between the consequences of two disasters: the residue from Chernobyl and the recent plunge of Ukraine's economy. (more)

Ukraine military says rebels using truce to regroup
1 March 2015 - Ukraine's military said on Sunday a ceasefire had been fully observed in eastern separatist territories overnight, but warned that pro-Russian rebels were using the truce to regroup for new attacks on government positions. The OSCE (Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe), which is monitoring the implementation of the peace deal, said it had observed on Saturday it had monitored the pull back of rebel equipment in parts of the Donetsk region. It said it had also observed the withdrawal of two convoys in Luhansk region, but separatists had 'prohibited the special monitoring mission from following either of these convoys to their end-points'. (more)

Pro-Russian rebels reject peace deal, launch offensive
23 January 2015 - Pro-Russian rebels in eastern Ukraine rejected a previously signed peace deal Friday and announced a new multi-pronged offensive against Ukrainian government troops. The main separatist leader in the Donetsk region said the insurgents won't join further peace talks and another rebel went even further saying they will not abide by a peace deal signed in September. (more)

Ukraine redeploys troops, fearing new rebel offensive
12 November 2014 - Ukraine said on Wednesday it was redeploying troops in the east because of fears that separatists will launch a new military offensive, despite Russia's denials it has sent troops to reinforce the rebels. A ceasefire agreed by the pro-Russian rebels and government forces more than two months ago is now all but dead, and Western fears of a return to all-out conflict are growing. US General Philip Breedlove, NATO Supreme Allied Commander Europe, said the alliance had seen Russian troops and tanks entering Ukraine in the past few days, confirming reports by international observers. (more)

Ukraine says rebels get reinforcements, shelling batters truce
11 November 2014 - Kiev accused separatists of preparing for renewed conflict in east Ukraine on Tuesday by bringing in 'Russian mercenaries' and rearming as heavy shelling increased strains on a crumbling ceasefire. Shelling around Donetsk, the main rebel stronghold, and artillery exchanges elsewhere punctured a truce that has been violated by what Kiev says are armed Russian incursions, and what the rebels call a new offensive by government forces. Ukrainian military spokesman Andriy Lysenko said the rebels had beefed up positions around the port city of Mariupol in the southeast, control of which would open up roads to territory in southern Ukraine that some Western leaders say Russian President Vladimir Putin hopes to claim. The ceasefire agreed on 5 September was intended to end a conflict that has killed more than 4,000 people since the separatists rose up in the mainly Russian-speaking east against the Western-looking government in Kiev. Russia has denied providing the rebels with military support. A Reuters correspondent saw a convoy of about 50 military trucks without insignia on Tuesday carrying equipment such as artillery guns and missile-launchers near Makiivka, on the eastern outskirts of Donetsk. The OCSE also reported a sighting of what appeared to be the same convoy. (Organization for Security and Cooperation, a body that includes Russia, Ukraine, the United States, and Western European countries) (more)

Worst east Ukraine shelling for month; ceasefire looks in doubt
9 November 2014 - East Ukraine's rebel stronghold Donetsk was pummelled on Sunday by the heaviest shelling in a month, and the OSCE said it spotted an armoured column of troops without insignia in rebel territory that Kiev said proved Moscow had sent reinforcements. A two-month-old ceasefire to end a war that has killed 4,000 people has appeared shakier than ever in the past few days, with each side accusing the other of having violated the terms of the peace plan. Ukraine's military said its standoff with the Russian-backed separatists in the east had intensified in the past week, which saw the rebels swear in new leaders after elections the government says violated the terms of the truce pact. The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) operates in East Ukraine with the blessing of all sides and is widely seen as neutral. Its statement that it spotted an unidentified armoured column in rebel territory helps support Kiev's position that Moscow has been sending in reinforcements to protect separatist enclaves the Kremlin now refers to as 'New Russia'. Although Russia blames the crisis on Kiev and the West, NATO has said it has overwhelming evidence that Russia has aided the rebels militarily in the conflict. (more)

Ukraine peace plan in tatters, 'frozen conflict' takes shape
5 November 2014 - Kiev said on 5 November it would halt payment of state funds in areas controlled by pro-Moscow rebels, as both sides hardened positions in what is rapidly becoming a 'frozen conflict': a long-term stalemate that the West believes is Russia's aim. Russia seized and annexed Ukraine's Crimea region in March. Kiev appears to be aiming now to isolate the separatist leadership rather than break it. The message on 5 November was that the rebel leaders may have to turn to Moscow now for cash handouts and subsidies to finance their breakaway aspirations. This is a risky strategy as it could be seen as Kiev abandoning Ukrainians living in rebel-held areas. (more)

Brutal winter set to hit war-torn eastern Ukraine
30 October 2014 - In the eastern Ukraine city of Donetsk, the inhabitants move around like shadows, eyes dull and faces weary with hardship, dressed in several layers of worn-out sweatshirts, vests, and jackets. The tiny rooms are lit with sunflower oil poured into saucers and set aflame. They are either too poor or old to flee the brutal separatist war that has ravaged Ukraine's east. Their dire situation is about to become much worse as Donetsk, which has lost nearly half of its 1 million-strong population, braces for winter. In eastern Ukraine, where temperatures typically stay below freezing all winter, damage to critical infrastructure and lack of adequate shelter for the newly homeless could mean death from cold for many. (more)

Ukraine's truce in trouble amid airport battle
4 October 2014 - Despite a ceasefire declared a month ago between the Ukrainian forces and pro-Russian rebels, the biggest city in eastern Ukraine remains embroiled in fighting that includes daily artillery and rocket barrage hitting residential areas. The fighting focusing on the airport of the rebel-held city of Donetsk shows the difficulties of enforcing a truce that has held in most other areas of eastern Ukraine since it was declared on 5 September. Day after day, artillery shells and rockets fly overhead. Many explode in densely populated residential areas as the rebels have fought to dislodge Ukrainian government forces from the Donetsk airport just north of the city. The barrage has intensified this week. More than 3,500 people have been killed in fighting between the pro-Russia rebels and government troops since the mutiny in eastern Ukraine erupted in April following Moscow's annexation of Crimea. (more)


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