Sunday, December 20, 2009

The signing of the Polish-Swedish Agreement on locating a Swedish consular officer in the premises of the Consulate General of the Republic of Poland

    The Polish-Swedish Agreement on locating a Swedish consular officer in the premises of the Consulate General of the Republic of Poland in Kaliningrad was signed on 18 December 2009. The contracting parties are the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Poland and the Government Offices of Sweden (Foreign Ministry). The Agreement was signed by MFA Director-General Rafał Wiśniewski and the Swedish Ambassador to Warsaw Dag Hartelius.
   Under Visa Code, which comes into effect on 5 April 2010, the Schengen states will be represented in terms of visa issuing in all third countries whose nationals are required to have visas on crossing external borders. However, due to financial constraints many EU Member States have closed a number of their diplomatic posts. This situation creates an incentive to tighten consular cooperation between the EU Member States. Such cooperation can be ensured either by means of visa representation, i.e. issuing visas on behalf of a Member State with no diplomatic post in a given country, or by allocation, i.e. locating a consul in the premises of a diplomatic post or a consular office of another Member State.
   With no diplomatic posts in many African and South American countries, Poland is greatly interested in developing such cooperation by means of the vast network of EU diplomatic posts in these regions. In return, Poland is ready to offer similar assistance in the regions where its diplomatic posts are the most numerous, e.g. in Eastern Europe and Central Asia.

   A Brussels meeting of heads of consular services was organized in September 2009 on Foreign Minister Radosław Sikorski’s initiative. The meeting addressed possible forms of representation and allocation and resulted in a number of common assignments currently under preparation.
   The Agreement on locating a Swedish consular officer in the Polish Consulate in Kaliningrad is the first one in a series of agreements on consular cooperation. In the near future Poland will sign agreements on visa representation with Sweden and then with Finland, the Netherlands, Estonia, Hungary, France, Slovakia, Greece, Switzerland and Belgium. Work on common consular posts is also underway within the Visegrad Group.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Mass protest in center of Kaliningrad on 12-12-2009

One of the initiators of that meeting was Baltic Republican Party forbidden by the Kremlin.
"My friends! I will repeat that I`m telling for 15 years. Our parliament ( duma) and the governor - impostors! They are simply impostors. And today on "constitution day", it is the most important conclusion. Therefore, I only offer to accept the resolution on realization of norms of the constitution and self-determinate our territory as Republic as a part of the Russian Federation. In this case we will get rid of all newcomers (aliens) from Moscow. We will get rid of all that headache which constantly imposes on us by so-called "United Russia Party" ", which consists worst representatives of our nation" - said leader of the Baltic Republican Party Sergey Pasko.

Present to the governor Georgy Boos from grateful Kaliningraders. Tangerine (mandarin) is one of the nicknames of governor Georgy Boos.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Witness - Surviving Aids ( Kaliningrad).

The story of Sergei and his peers, young people trying to turn back the tide of drugs and HIV/Aids that is devastating Kaliningrad's youth.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Television journalist dies after falling from window, local activists believe she was murdered.

The division of the Russian Union of Journalists in the Kaliningrad region has called on law enforcement agencies to investigate the death of prominent local television journalist Olga Kotovskaya, one of the founders of the regional television company Kaskad, who is believed to have committed suicide. The Russia Union of Journalists believes the suicide theory is convenient, but it is not the only one.
"The administration of the division of the Russian Union of Journalists in the Kaliningrad region has asked law enforcement agencies to conduct a thorough investigation into the death of Olga Kotovskaya and open a criminal case," an official with the division of the Russian Union of Journalists in the Kaliningrad region said, citing an official statement by the Russian Union of Journalists.
Olga Kotovskaya died on November 16, 2009 after falling out of a 14th floor window in Kaliningrad. A forensic examination has been scheduled as part of the official probe into this case.
In 1991, Kotovskaya and a group of colleagues created the independent television company Kaskad, which later developed into a powerful media group comprised of two television channels, a daily newspaper, two radio stations and an advertising agency. Kotovskaya was editor-in-chief and creative director of the television channel for a long time.
In 2006, Kotovskaya and her partners Igor Rostov and Svetlana Ryabukha lost control of the television company to a group of people including Vladimir Pirogov, former deputy governor of the Kaliningrad region. Kotovskaya and her partners tried to contest that decision. The region's Arbitration Court reversed the decision to change the company's charter, under which the rights to run the company were transferred to its board of directors. Kotovskaya, who was among the plaintiffs in that case, said the protocol of the meeting was falsified.
The new administration of the company accused its predecessors of embezzlement.
Igor Rostov, Kotovskaya's husband and former co-owner of Kaskad, told Igor Rudnikov, a member of the local parliament, after the death of his wife: "She was murdered. If I am found dead on the rails, do not believe that I committed suicide." Arbitration Court press officer Igor Belov told "Nezavisimaya Gazeta" spokesman he finds it strange that Kotovskaya, who was to take part in a new trial seeking the return of the television company, committed suicide.
Local opposition activists were also categorical. "I do not have the slightest doubt that she was murdered. And she was murdered for her journalistic activities. I cannot imagine that a person who has won the main lawsuit in her life has decided to jump to her death from the 14th floor. The fact that violence against journalists and owners of media outlets has become the norm in the Kaliningrad region and is almost never punished should at least attract the attention of the authorities and the appropriate bodies," Mikhail Chesalin, leader of the local division of Patriots of Russia and a member of the local parliament, told "Nezavisimaya Gazeta". His colleague Solomon Ginzburg told "Nezavisimaya Gazeta" that Kotovskaya had sought his help a year ago, saying that a high-ranking official had urged her to stop taking part in the litigation involving the fate of Kaskad.
Investigators have changed their position under pressure from public opinion. Marianna Andryushina, press secretary for the Investigations Committee of the prosecutor's office of the Kalinigrad region, said the investigators will be considering all possible theories in Kotovskaya's death.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Kremlin`s war games in Kaliningrad - childish behavior.

For Kremlin Kaliningrad is nothing, but just unsinkable aircraft carrier.
Oh, please, leave us alone. Take your rusty garbage and go home to your Kremlin.
Let us live peacefully with our neighbours. Let my people go.
Kaliningrad at war. Kremlin`s military training exercises "Zapad (west)2009"

Saturday, August 22, 2009


   Self-determination is defined as free choice of one’s own acts without external compulsion; and especially as the freedom of the people of a given territory to determine their own political status or independence from their current state. In other words, it is the right of the people to decide how they want to be governed without the influence of any other country.
   The revolt of the British colonists in North America has been defined as the first assertion of the right of national and democratic self-determination because of the explicit invocation of natural law, the natural rights of man and consent of, and sovereignty by, the people, ideas inspired particularly by John Locke’s writings. Thomas Jefferson furthered promoted the notion that the will of the people was supreme, especially through authorship of the Declaration of Independence which inspired Europeans throughout the 19th century.
During the early 1800s most of the nations of South America achieved independence from Spain.
   When the Bolsheviks came to power in Russia in November 1917, they supported the right of all nations, including colonies, to self-determination. As early as 1914 Lenin wrote: “It would be wrong to interpret the right to self-determination as meaning anything but the right to existence as a separate state.” The 1918 Constitution of the Soviet Union acknowledged the right of secession for its constituent republics.
   The Treaty of Brest-Litovsk in March 1918 led to Russia's exit from the war and the independence of Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Ukraine, Lithuania and Poland.
   The end of the war led to the dissolution of the defeated Austro-Hungarian Empire and the creation by the Allies of Czechoslovakia and the union of the State of Slovenes, Croats and Serbs and the Kingdom of Serbia as new states.
   During the 1920s and 1930s there were some successful movements for self-determination in the beginnings of the process of decolonization. In the Statute of Westminster Great Britain granted independence to Canada, New Zealand, Newfoundland, the Irish Free State, the Commonwealth of Australia, and the Union of South Africa after the British parliament declared itself as incapable of passing laws over them without their consent. Egypt, Afghanistan and Iraq also achieved independence from Britain and Lebanon from France.
   The ratification of the United Nations Charter in 1945 at then end of World War II placed the right of self-determination into the framework of international law and diplomacy.
Chapter 1, Article 1, part 2 states that purpose of the UN Charter is: “To develop friendly relations among nations based on respect for the principle of equal rights and self-determination of peoples, and to take other appropriate measures to strengthen universal peace."
   Article 1 in both the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR). Both read: “All peoples have the right of self-determination. By virtue of that right they freely determine their political status and freely pursue their economic, social and cultural development.”
Self-determination challenges the principle of territorial integrity (or sovereignty) of states because it is the will of the people that makes a state legitimate. This implies a people should be free to choose their own state and its territorial boundaries.
   In order to accommodate demands for minority rights and avoid secession and the creation of a separate new state, many states decentralize or devolve greater decision-making power to new or existing subunits or even autonomous areas.
From Kaliningrad to: Vilnius -350 km. , Riga -390 km., Warsaw -400 km., Minsk -550km., Berlin -600 km. Stockholm -650 km, Tallinn -650 km., Kopenhagen -680 km., Oslo -850 km., Kiev -850 km.,Moscow- 1245 km.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

ECHR rules in favour of Kaliningradian union activists.

  The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) has ruled in favour of members of the independent trade union of dockers at Russia’s Kaliningrad Sea Commercial Port. The court in Strasbourg ordered the Russian state to pay EUR 75,000 (RUR 3.3m) in compensation to the union members for loss of employment and violation of their rights. Under the ruling 30 dockers at the port will receive EUR 2,500 (RUR 110,800) each.
   In October 1997, the members of the trade union called a two-day strike to press their demand for higher wages and better working conditions. The port refused to give in to the union demands, but instead dismissed the union activists. Without recourse in Russian courts, the dockers turned in 2001 to the ECHR, which accepted the case in 2004.
   Mr Mikhail Chesalin, member of the Kaliningrad regional council from the Patriots of Russia party, said this was the first time that the ECHR has recognised a case of discrimination against trade unionists in Russia. “Now Mr Putin and the port company have to pay us EUR 75,000, and authorities have to investigate the activities of those port officials who let the union activists be discriminated,” Mr Chesalin said.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Newspaper editor attacked for independent coverage in Kaliningrad.

   The chief editor of the "Dvornik" (street sweeper), a regional newspaper in Kaliningrad, Alexey Shabunin, was attacked late Thursday, July 2, while he was riding a bicycle on his way home from a garage. The journalist is currently recovering from the assault in the local hospital.
   An unknown hooded man hit him on the head with a steel rod. Despite a severe injury, Shabunin was able to seek medical aid and file a complaint at the local police station.
   A criminal probe into the bodily blows has been opened and the investigators have already found the steel rod likely to contain the attacker’s fingerprints.
   Recalling his previous encounters with law enforcement officials, Alexey Shabunin tends to connect the assault with his professional activity. In early June, he was arrested and kept in detention for 4 days for a road accident he could not have possibly caused as he was in his office at the time, the journalist claims.
   It is worth mentioning that the "Dvornik" owner, Arseniy Makhlov, was hospitalized in March 2008 after having been stabbed in the back by unknown attackers.
   The paper is well- reputed for its high-profile independent coverage of local social and political events.
   Shabunin tried to report the incident to the Baltiyski district police department immediately, but an officer in charge would not accept his statement, saying he was off duty for dinner. Police opened a probe only after the local press covered the attack.
The policemen, captain Edward Kostenko and captain Michael Agievich who have not accepted the statement from the editor are sacked by major general of police Sergey Kirichenko .

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Kaliningrad ghetto-visa policy of EU towards Kaliningrad.

   Today Kaliningraders pay 35 euros for each departure from the limits of the Kaliningrad region. Passing all circles of the hell. Standing in queues at embassies, collecting documents, proofing something to officials and etc.
   Couple of years back the error has been made. In our visa question were engaged mr. Putin and mr. Dmitry Rogozin ( Russia's ambassador to NATO). Before the introduction of Poland and Lithuania into EU, Kaliningraders had the right, without visas visit and remain in these countries up to 30 days and vice versa. Other inhabitants of Russia paid for it. Mr. Putin has decided to equate us with inhabitants of other Russia. As a result, we are cut in the rights in relation to other inhabitants of Russia. If we go to Belarus or to Ukraine, we are obliged to pay 35 euros for the Lithuanian transit visa. Other inhabitants of Russia go to these countries free of charge. It does not equal us with inhabitants of other Russia.
   The thoughtless steps of the Kremlin and carelessness of EU power structures made us aliens in EU`s body. Back there by the hands of fascists was a Warsaw ghetto nowadays by the the hands of Kremlin and Bruxelles we have Kaliningrad ghetto.
   On 18 June, Lithuania’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Vygaudas Ušackas, who is taking part in the European Council in Brussels with the delegation headed by President of Lithuania Valdas Adamkus, met with Vice-President of the European Commission responsible for Justice, Freedom and Security Jacques Barrot and discussed the EU visa policy with regard to Belarus and the Kaliningrad region in Russia.
Minister V.Ušackas emphasized that proper EU visa policy in the region of East-Central Europe could play a special role in promoting regional economic, cultural and political cooperation.
   The Minister stressed that Lithuania spoke up for a visa-free or a much more facilitated Schengen visa regime with all the countries in the Baltic Sea region.
According to Minister V.Ušackas, it was necessary to find flexible solutions, which would provide an opportunity for as much of free movement for residents of Russia’s Kaliningrad region and, respectively, the citizens of Lithuania as possible, and to cut visa cost for the citizens of Belarus.
   Head of the Lithuanian diplomacy informed that currently Ministries of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania, Poland and Russia were preparing an initiative regarding the facilitation of travelling for residents of the EU Member States – Lithuania and Poland – and for residents of Russia’s Kaliningrad region.
   V.Ušackas spoke up for a visa-free regime for residents of Russia’s Kaliningrad region and invited the Commission to come up with appropriate suggestions.
Vice-President of the European Commission J.Barrot said that he was allegedly ready to discuss the suggestions regarding the facilitated visa regime for residents of Russia’s Kaliningrad region and that he was waiting for joint suggestions of Lithuania, Poland and Russia.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

EBRD long-term loan to overhaul Kaliningrad heating system.

   That is funny. What for Kremlin then? Is that a Kremlin state policy for our region just to take money from EU? We could do it ourselves. Anyway Kremlin people will put most of the loan in pockets for themselves.
Part of an international package to reduce pollution and maximise energy efficiency
   The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development is joining forces with the international community to modernise the communal heating system in parts of Russia’s westernmost city, Kaliningrad, through a €21.5 million financing programme, over half of which will come from the EBRD.
   The EBRD funding will take the form of a 15-year loan of €12 million to the Russian Federation, which will be on-lent to the Kaliningrad district heating company, Kaliningradteploset. This is wholly owned by the city of Kaliningrad.
   In addition, the project is supported by grants from the Northern Dimension Environmental Partnership (NDEP) Support Fund (€7.3 million), the Swedish International Development Co-operation Agency (SIDA) (€1.7 million), and the city of Kaliningrad (€500,000).
   The investment programme will enable Kaliningrad to reduce gas consumption, as well as decrease water leakages and heat losses exacerbated by years of under-investment. Altogether, these measures will help to lower greenhouse gas emissions resulting from excessive fuel use.
   The programme will involve the renovation of 30 km of the heating network (to be funded by the EBRD), the closure of 71 coal-fired boilers and the overhaul of 1,212 heating sub-stations. This will lead to annual savings of 4,280 MWh in electricity consumption, 700,000 cubic metres in water usage and 56,000 Gcal in heat losses.
   Total annual cost savings from these improvements are estimated at €2.7 million, representing 10 percent of the utility’s operating costs.
   The project aims to transform Kaliningrad’s district heating company into a commercially operated and financially viable company. The introduction of a metering system will permit billing based on real usage. Financial support for lower-income groups will replace operating subsidies to the utility.
   At the request of Russia’s Finance Ministry, the EBRD and NDEP Support Fund established the Northern Dimension Foundation in Kaliningrad two years ago. The Foundation will work alongside the utility to support implementation of the project.
   The NDEP programme was conceived in 2001 to mobilise help from the international community in tackling the region’s main environmental problems, particularly in northwest Russia.
   Kaliningrad is one of the 89 regions of the Russian Federation. Located between Lithuania and Poland, it is separated from the rest of Russia by Belarus. The city has a population of around 420,000.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Kaliningrad's Governor Reports Biggest Income.

(On photo: "Galeon 530 fly", boat of Georgy Boos. Price 633.900 EUR)
   More than 20 of the Russia`s 83 governors have released their tax declarations, revealing a vast chasm in their respective incomes.
   Kaliningrad Governor Georgy Boos was by far the top-earning regional boss last year, declaring an income of 122.37 million rubles ($3.8 million), the report said.
President Dmitry Medvedev in March published his tax declaration, reporting 4.1 million rubles ($124,000) in earnings.

(On photo: the interior of governor`s boat)
   The decree, part of Medvdev's anti-corruption campaign, has been criticized for not requiring officials to make public the income of their adult children, to whom assets can be easily transferred. Mededvev conceded Tuesday that his anti-corruption drive has so far seen no success.
   Income of 122.37 million rubles ($3.8 million) in one of the poorest region of Russia. Hmmm? The level of corruption you could see on my case. Russian poliсe entraps me for only 120$ and now trying to put me in prison for 3 years. 
   By Russian law any state official could not work in commercial companies.
P.S. Take a look at the blog of "Copydude" to understand the whole situation on corruption.
Georgy Boos’ Bananas Republic.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Tourism in arms: the unexpected boost of Russian missiles in Kaliningrad.

Michael Kalinin statue | (Image: ©themactep/ Paul Philippov/ Flickr)

by kasiakjk - Warszawa
Translation: Lydia Bigo
In Polish-
   When Russian president Dmitry Medvedev announced the deployment of missiles in the Baltic region bordering Poland and Lithuania in November 2008, the western media frowned upon a resumption of the cold war of arms. Kalingrad has rightly kept its distance from the Russian response to the planned US anti-missile shield, a diplomatic bluff.
   On the news of Moscow's military plans, one Kalingrad newspaper wryly commented that the Russian ballistic missile Iskander was already in the city! It has a very long neck. The latest acquisition to the city zoo - a giraffe - was named in honour of the missiles, the article teased, hitting on the social mood. ‘We will wait, we will see,’ claimed local residents. ‘We still don't know anything.’ Maria Drutman, the head of the tourism department in the former German city of Kalingrad, expressed hope in the victory of common sense, and admitted that she was grateful to the president. ‘Thanks to him, the entire world has found out about Kalingrad’s existence. For us, this is great exposure.’
    Undeniably, the town of Kanta is opting for tourism instead of arms. One of the priorities for the local government is the development of the tourism industry. It aims to attract Prussian heritage (it was once Prussia’s capital), which seems to be a Russian fantasy. Called Koenigsberg before it was renamed Kaliningrad in 1946, the Russian exclave discourages itself as a commercial attraction of Kaliningrad, and lifelong resident Immanuel Kant, a famous philosopher and moralist, has become the centrepiece of the town, where he died in 1804.
    It wasn't always like this. In soviet times, the district was a closed militarised zone. The region remained a bugbear to the west. There were traces of Prussian presence in the eyes of the communist leaders—in 1968 a castle was demolished which was built in thirteenth century Kaliningrad. It was forever to remain the property of the Soviet Union; however, its residents leaned towards Europe. In the eighties the secret police noted that the youth had an ‘unhealthy interest in everything German’, and in the local slang, the city was known as ‘Koenigiem’. Today sociologists draw attention to the fact that many youths label themselves as 'not Russian, but not yet Europeans'.
   There is no question of separatism in Kaliningrad, and from the success of football, the Russian team are celebrated grandly just like everywhere else in the country. The region’s residents like to emphasise their diversity. Local journalist Michail Janickij states that: ‘We are more European than our compatriots from the depths of Russia.’ We find ourselves in a town where next to the ‘Matuszki Rossiji’ (mother Russia)  monument, (which commemorates the merging of the district to the Soviet Union) a new shopping centre has been built – ‘Europa’. Most of the residents are positive about working together with Europe and the region's ambition is to become a Russian window to the west. As many as, 70% of youths from Kaliningrad, connect their future to the European Union, as the great homeland has disappointed the people of Kaliningrad.
              Russian Hong Kong or Baltic Las Vegas
   In Moscow, Boris Yeltsin lacked ideas about what to do in Kaliningrad and how it has torn away from the rest of the territory. There were ambitious plans to transform the exclave into a 'Russian Hong Kong’, but the free economic zone created in 1991 has become a cover for illegal business dealings. In the district, the number of organised crimes increased, as did the number of people infected with HIV. Unemployment rose. Distrust with regards to Moscow rose as they lacked involvement, as during the 1998 economic crisis, when the collapse of the rouble caused a huge loss and they were dependent on import from the Kaliningrad district. During fuel prosperity, the economic situation improved as the region received federal funds. They built large shopping centres, repaired the main streets and Muscovite businessmen started to invest in building hotels and casinos.
   Kaliningrad didn't become a ‘Russian Hong Kong’, but it definitely wants to be a ‘Baltic Las Vegas’. The authorities promised the residents a ‘European lifestyle’. Nobody really believed it, but the forecast showed that the future was dominated by optimism. But, when at the end of 2008, the district felt the first effects of the world recession, the demon crash from ten years before had awoken again. Yet again, companies are going bust, unemployment is on the rise, employers aren't paying wages and the local airline has announced it is going into bankruptcy. Without air transport, Kaliningrad will turn into a prison, as crossing borders in a car is still a nightmare.
   It is a region which is not capable of feeding itself. For this reason food prices are so much higher than that of the rest of Russia, or even Poland or Lithuania, and it still wants to break out and be independent. The problem is that the plans of the Russian Federation and the district of Kaliningrad are in contradiction to each other. In ‘Little Russia’, where the residents tend to call themselves ‘Euro Russians’ or ‘ Baltic Russians’, they talk more about visas, the economic crisis, careers and new shopping centres than they do about the American threat or post imperial sentiments.
    ‘Rockets? What rockets?’ A shocked Wasil, a twenty-year-old student from the University of Immanuel Kant, says. Exactly what rockets? If the Kremlin really wanted to fulfil its military threats against the antagonists in the west, it would be against the local population. Russia was bluffing. We congratulate the residents of Kaliningrad for having some common sense.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

EU and I. Part 3.

Dear Mr Vasiliev,

Above all, I wish to apologise for not having replied earlier to your e-mail to the European Parliament regarding Kaliningrad area. This is due to the large amount of correspondence addressed to our service.
I can confirm that your observations have been duly noted and that the Parliament is aware of the problems of this unique area. Its Resolution of 19 June 2007 on EU economic and trade relations with Russia stressed the importance of further economic and social development in the Kaliningrad region as a model for enhanced economic and trade cooperation between the EU and Russia.
As you certainly know, it is the European Commission that is responsible for implementing the policies and programmes adopted by the Parliament and the Council, and the Kaliningrad oblast given its particular geographical situation is one of the priority areas for the Northern Dimension policy.
Additionally, you may wish to address your concerns and opinions to the Directorate-General on External Relations of the European Commission:
In conclusion, I thank you for having contacted the European Parliament and I may assure you that we will stay concerned by the development of the Kaliningrad oblast in the future.
Yours sincerely,
European Parliament
Directorate General for Information
Correspondence with Citizens Unit

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

EU and I. Part II.

European Commission
Directorate General for External Relations
Gunnar Wiegand

Dear Mr. Vasiliev,
  I am writing in response to the message that you sent on 28 October to
President Barroso. I regret the delay in replying caused by the need to
investigate the facts of the matter. I would like to assure you that
the possibility for residents of the Kaliningrad region to travel as freely
as possible is high on our agenda. It is a major part of the EU's
strategy to make Kaliningrad a successful region of the Russian
Federation and positive example of cooperation between the EU and
Russia. That success depends to a large extent on a degree of
integration of Kaliningrad with neighbouring regions of the EU and
Baltic region in general.
   We are aware that the combined effects of the Visa Facilitation
Agreement between the European Union and the Russian Federation as well
as the accession of Poland and Lithuania to Schengen have had some
negative consequences for the residents of Kaliningrad (while
undoubtedly visa facilitation has improved the situation for other
citizens of Russia).
   That is why the Commission has pointed to a number of possibilities
that exist to ease the burden for those who travel from the Kaliningrad
region to Lithuania and Poland. Firstly, these are the broad categories
of persons who benefit from the waiving of the visa fee under the Visa
Facilitation Agreement. Secondly, it is possible to issue more
frequently multiple entry visas, valid for a period of one year, up to
a maximum of five years (such visas will be for all the Schengen zone
not, as before, only to Lithuania or Poland). Thirdly, since 1st January
2007, the visa fee is fully waived for children under six years,
students and accompanying teachers travelling for educational purposes
and researchers fulfilling certain conditions.
The Schengen "acquis" also provides for the possibility for Member
States to waive or reduce the visa fee in individual cases, when this
measure serves the promotion of cultural interests, foreign policy,
development policy or other areas of vital public interest or for
humanitarian reasons.
  The Commission has encouraged the Russian Federation, Poland and
Lithuania to negotiate bilateral agreements on local border traffic
which would enable residents living close to the border to cross
without a visa. As we understand there is an intention to negotiate such
agreements in the future.
  I hope you will find this information useful. I wish you all success in
your endeavours.

Gunnar Wiegand
Acting Director Eastern Europe, South Caucasus, Central Asian Republics
Head of Unit for Relations with Russia, Northern Dimension Policy and
Nuclear Safety
European Commission
Directorate General for External Relations
Thu, 10 Apr 2008

Thursday, March 19, 2009

The Baltic Republican Party

 On photo, Sergei Pasko (right) and Rustam Vasilev.

The Baltic Republican Party in Kaliningrad renamed the Kaliningrad Public Movement-Respublika.
The Baltic Republican Party (BRP) was founded in 1992, leader Sergei Pasko. Authorities shut down the BRP on 27 October 2002.
The BRP contested court decisions based on the Russian law on political parties, which requires parties to have a minimum of 50,000 members and active branches in half of Russia's regions in order to be registered. In February 2005, ruling on the complaint brought forward by the BRP, the Russian Constitutional Court confirmed the validity of the law on political parties. According to the ruling, all parties that did not meet the minimum requirements would have to "self-disolve by January 1, 2006, or transform into public associations".
The BRP's main goal was to make Kaliningrad larger autonomy within Russia or special international legal status which gives the ability to negotiate its trade deals with the EU and to regulate its own commercial affairs. Many people from Kaliningrad supporting this idea.
The BRP leader suggested that immigration should be controlled by local authorities in Kaliningrad and that dual citizenship (Russian and EU) should be granted to the inhabitants of Kaliningrad.
The leader of the BRP told the Wall Street Journal in February 2003 that: "Kaliningrad will be a partly independent state in connection with the Russian Federation, but we hope to be a subject of the EU as well".
Kaliningrad should become an autonomous region within Russia, but which would bring its laws in line with EU standards.
BRP had collected signatures from residents in favour of the city of Kaliningrad going back to its previous name of Koenigsberg.

The Kaliningrad Public Movement-Respublika.
"Respublika Kaliningrad Public Movement" was created in February 2005 by Sergei Pasko, chairman of the banned Baltic Republican Party and president of the Kaliningrad Entrepreneurs Union.
The main goal of the movement is to obtain international status permitting "independent relations with the European Union, while retaining associate membership of the Russian Federation".
Sergei Pasko had declared to the russian newspaper "Kommersant": "Respublika is not the BRP. There is interaction, but not more. We have shifted to the higher level – we are preparing a legal basis".
The new movement's flag is orange and contains the words "KOD Respublika" (Kaliningrad Public Movement Republic, in Russian).

Friday, February 13, 2009

Dismantlement of Public Health Service in Kaliningrad by Kremlin.

(On photo, regional infectious hospital in Kaliningrad. See the rest of photos.)

  The children's Center of regenerative medicine and rehabilitation, can be closed on April, 1st, 2009 in connection with financing change. Ther is no money In regional budget on the maintenance of the centre. The centre of regenerative medicine has been created in 1995 and is unique establishment in the Kaliningrad region which is engaged in medical and social rehabilitation of children-invalids, including patients of children's cerebral paralysis. That is children here both treat, and learn. Now the centre serves about 500 children at the age from 3 months till 18 years.
  Maternity homes in the Kaliningrad region will be kept only in four cities – Sovetsk, Gusev, Chernyakhovsk and Kaliningrad. Delivery rooms in other cities of area will be closed, has declared Elena Klujkova the Minister of Health of region.
In the beginning of 2008, delivery rooms functioned in 21 city of area. In particular, delivery rooms in Baltiysk and Svetliy are already closed.
  According to women, closing delivery rooms is obviously planned action directed against people.
  In children's hospital № 3 of Kaliningrad, closed branch, for children who have remained without parents.
Closed children's hospital in Mamonovo, city which bordering with Poland.

(On photo, looted Hospital of fishermen.  See the rest of photos.)

  Hospital of fishermen in Kaliningrad is liquidated. Constructed long time ago by enterprises of a fishing industry for the employees.
  This establishment, serving 10 thousand inhabitants of the regional centre, has been closed by the authorities on November, 1st last year. The reason - an economic inconsistency. The hospital could not earn on a life in system of new single channel financing. The situation was not rescued even by joining hospital of fishermen to the regional hospital for the veterans, which also in the heaviest financial crisis.
  The Kremlin and Moscow`s puppets as governor Georgiy Boos with his Moscow team breaks here in Koenigsberg everything good, what Kaliningraders built for decades.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

The diplomats of EU, Kaliningraders and cretinism of Kremlin.

( On photo, memorial service near settlement Yantarny without detained diplomats.)

  Russian traffic police, on February 1st, have detained two cars with diplomatic plates in which were consul of Poland in Kaliningrad Marek Golkovsky and consul of Germany Aristide Fenster with his wife. Diplomats was on their way to the memorial service devoted to memory of massacre by nazis at settlement Yantarny, located on the bank of Baltic sea.   The reason of detention of diplomats, according to traffic police, was that foreigners have crossed a border zone without corresponding admissions.

  Traffic police have referred to the order of FSB №238 from 2006- "The border zone limits in the Kaliningrad region"- according to which a border zone are defined by a site from frontier to the back of Kaliningrad region on depth of 5-7 kilometres.
  Stupid Kremlin law by Putin and former head of FSB Patrushev on which even we Russians, Kaliningraders should ask the permission from FSB to visit that zone. Though in that zone a few towns and villages. Mad Kremlin policy against Kaliningraders.

  At the night from January, 31st toFebruary, 1st, 1945 - under the German city of Palmnicken (nowadays settlement Yantarny, Kaliningrad region) nazis have shot thousands prisoners, most of them are Jews.
Massacre of Palmnicken.
  Because of the advance of Soviet troops in January 1945, the East Prussian subcamp of the Stutthof concentration camp was disbanded and its inmates were sent through Königsberg to Palmnicken. Only 3,000 of the original 13,000 inmates survived the forced march.   Originally, the surviving detainees were to be walled up within a tunnel of an amber mine, but this plan collapsed upon the objections of the mine's manager. Schutzstaffel members then brought the prisoners to the beach of Palmnicken during the night of January 31 and under rifle fire forced them to march into the Baltic Sea. Only 15 inmates survived the war crime.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Films of modern Kaliningrad and old Koenigsberg.

This article will be update in the future

The main streets of Kaliningrad

DW-TV Kaliningrad-Tax haven for investors.
Not yet though for foreign investors, as money simply disappear in black hole of Kremlin. Do not trust and do not deal with Kremlin people and your money will be safe. Deal with Kaliningraders who is willing to unite back Konigsberg and EU.

Kaliningrad fights Baltic amber smuggling.
Kremlin corruption at it`s worst.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Is our Baltic sea for peace or for war stupidity?

  More than 300,000 tons of weapons were dumped by the Allies between 1945 and 1947. The toxic stockpile includes nearly 65,000 tons(net!) of mustard gas, nerve agent sarin and the notorious death camp gas, Zyklon B.
Environmental aspects and the issue of protection of the sea were completely ignored at that time.
  1. The Bornholm site is located in the western Baltic, east of the island of Bornholm. Over 35.000 tons were dumped in water depths ranging between 70 and 120 m. The CW contained an estimated 13.000 tons of toxic agents. Most CW was thrown over board packed in crates or containers, but some ships were also sunk.
  2. The Gotland Deep site is located in the central Baltic. At least 2.000 tons of CW was dumped here (some sources mention a total of 40.000 tons). There are strong indications that part of the conventional and chemical munition was thrown overboard during transport to the Baltic dump sites; how many tons were thus dumped is not known. Most likely it is mainly this ammunition that has been washing ashore on the beaches of Denmark and Poland.
  3. The Måseskär site is located in the eastern Skagerrak, 25 km off the Swedish coast. At least 8 ships were sunk here in a water depths ranging between 180-200 m. According to reports roughly 30.000 tons of toxic agents were dumped.
  Some degradation products of chemical warfare agents are even more persistent and several times more toxic than their original substance (e.g. mustard gas and lewisite).

  It is important to note that, in addition to the dumping of tens of thousands of tons of chemical munitions into the Baltic sea, many more tens of thousands of tons of conventional explosives were also disposed of in this manner, sometimes in the same shipments or locatit is clear that the munitions are subject to corrosion effects rendering them fragile or even resulting in leakage of CW agents. There is also good evidence that certain types of explosive can become extremely unstable with the passage of time.

  Public concern over the potential environmental impacts inherent in sea-dumped CW is genuine. Too often opinion of people populated Baltic shores have been ignored in order to provide support for unrelated strategic or economic considerations.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Kaliningraders vs. Kremlin State.

( On photo, Polish politics trying to help somehow to Kaliningraders)

  The government's decision to raise import duties on used foreign cars and trucks, aimed at protecting domestic and foreign car producers in Russia amid the global credit crunch will come into force on January 12.
  In reality, the duty on used cars will double, and triple for trucks.
The decision has led to an increase in those wishing to bring foreign-made cars into the Kaliningrad Region since early December as people try to avoid the January deadline.
  The head of a public organization that protects motorists "Spravedlivost" ( Justice) Konstantin Doroshok said a 33-year-old man had died on the Russian-Lithuanian border crossing Friday morning on December 26 after spending several days waiting to cross the border. Driver Vycheslav Skubna will never come back to home anymore.

(On photo, Polish people helping Kaliningraders by bringing them free food and woods to warm up in freezing cold.)

  Protests by motorists unhappy with the slow processing and bribery by customs periodically take place on the border. Customs showing just open sabotage by not processing at all.
  In addition, corruption has gotten markedly worse as the level of monopolization in the economy and bureaucratization of government has increased. All of this is pushing people’s discontent to the surface.

(On photo, Polish-Russian border, Branevo-Mamonovo. Long queue for a few kilometers, almost 700 cars.)
  The anger over increased import duties is particularly strong among residents of the Kaliningrad region, the majority of which -- perhaps as high as 55 percent -- make a living either directly or indirectly connected with the sale or servicing of imported automobiles.
  To some, Visas come to an end, the Russian state compels them to break EU rules by staying in queue in their cars near borders..
  Russian newspapers and TV are silent, as the state holds the control over a freedom of speech in Russia.
  Eventually on family holidays the Christmas and New Year, the Russian state by customs bodies has thrown and left people in the winter in unhuman conditions on borders.