United States and European Union remove sanctions against Iran

After an IAEA report stating Iran is fulfilling the terms of the nuclear deal, USA and EU lifted Sanctions against Iran on 16 January 2016.

The move is expected to impact the oil prices, pushing them further down, since the end of sanctions means Iran can freely rejoin the oil market as a supplier. The oil prices have been steadily falling lately, seriously damaging financial state of oil exporting nations, such as Russia.

Oil prices

Sourcehttp://www.oil-price.net/

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Ukraine closes its air space to Russian airplanes

On 25 November 2015 Ukraine announced it is closing its air space to all Russian planes, whether civilian or military. It also announced it stops buying Russian natural gas.

While the front line in Ukraine has stabilized for now, thus no more attracting much attention from the Western media, the confrontation between Russia and Ukraine, including military one, is still very much on.

Belarus denies plans to establish Russian air base

On 6 October 2015 President of Belarus – a nominal Russian ally – Alexander Lukashenko publicly denied reports about the plans to establish a Russian military air base in Belarus. He also expressed anger at the Russian officials who made statements about such plans.

This statement is another instance of Lukahenko’s attempts at balancing between staying a formal ally of Russia and avoiding too much Russian control over Belarus. Lukashenko stepped up this balancing after the Russian invasion of Ukraine in 2014.

United States continue military support of Ukraine

United States have announced they are going to supply Ukraine with long-range counter-battery radars worth $20 million. This brings American security support of Ukraine to $265 million.

This move by the United States came the next day after Obama-Putin meeting in the UN, demonstrating American commitment to support Ukraine in its struggle for survival against Russia, regardless of the latter’s recent moves in Syria.

Ukraine: Battle of Starohnativka, 10 August 2015

On 10 August 2015 Russian forces conducted their first serious attack against Ukrainian positions since Battle of Marinka on 3 June 2015. Like at Marinka, this attempt by Russians did not result in any gains for them.

Ukrainian forces repelled the attackers and went on the counter-offensive. They gained some territory and even nearly captured village Novolaspa to the east from Starohnativka, which had been controlled by Russians. However, the latter used reinforcements to conduct a counter-attack of their own, causing Ukrainian retreat from Novolaspa. Nevertheless, Ukrainians managed to keep control of a number of heights in the area that had been under Russian control prior to 10 August.

The general situation on the front line in August 2015 is the tensest since the large-scale Battle of Debaltseve in February 2015.

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Regularly updated interactive map of war in Ukraine. Press View Larger Map for better view:

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The permanent page of this interactive map is here: 

https://stratreview.wordpress.com/ukraine_war_map/