According to Ukrainian sources, twelve people were injured in a Russian bomb attack in southern Ukraine near the country's second largest nuclear power plant. The bombs hit a residential building and other houses in Voznesensk in the southern Ukrainian region of Mykolaiv, the Ukrainian Prosecutor General's Office said on Telegram. According to preliminary information, three children were among the injured, two of whom were in a “critical” condition.
The regional governor of Mykolaiv, Vitali Kim, had previously reported on Telegram that nine were injured. Among them are four children and young people between the ages of three and 17 who are “all in critical condition”.
Voznesensk is about 20 kilometers away from Ukraine's second largest nuclear power plant in Pivdennoukrainsk. The Russian attack in the 30-kilometer zone around the power plant is "another cynical act of nuclear terrorism," said the Ukrainian power plant operator Energoatom on Telegram. It cannot be ruled out that the projectiles were fired in the direction of the power plant. The Russian military had already tried to capture the nuclear power plant in early March, the operator added.
The "terrorist country" Russia has fired on a residential building, wrote the head of the Ukrainian Presidential Office, Andriy Yermak, on Telegram. "Our job is to ensure that not only today's generation of Russians are held accountable, but also their children and grandchildren," he added. Russia will "pay for everything".
The Ukrainian army said it shot down four Kalibr cruise missiles fired from the Black Sea near the central Ukrainian city of Dnipro. According to the army, there were also Russian attacks near Bakhmut, Saitseve and Kodema in the heavily contested Donetsk region in the east of the country. "Fighting continues," the General Staff of the Ukrainian Armed Forces said on Saturday.
After the first grain deliveries from Ukraine, UN Secretary-General António Guterres also called for unhindered access for Russian agricultural products and fertilizers to world markets. During a visit to the coordination center in Istanbul, which controls grain supplies from Ukraine, Guterres reminded that the supply agreement also guarantees Russia the right to export its agricultural products and fertilizers despite Western sanctions.
Russia has accused Ukraine of poisoning several Russian soldiers in the Russian-held Zaporizhia region. On July 31, several soldiers with symptoms of poisoning were taken to a military hospital, the Defense Ministry in Moscow said. The poison botulinum toxin type B was found in them. The ministry speaks of "chemical terrorism" in Ukraine.
The Ukrainian Ministry of the Interior, on the other hand, names spoiled canned meat, in which this poison often occurs, as a possible cause of poisoning. According to a ministry adviser, Russian troops have received numerous complaints about past-date canned meat. Exactly one year ago, opposition politician Alexei Navalny was poisoned in Russia, according to Western knowledge. Russia has denied this.
According to information from Kyiv, Russia has also fired on civilians and non-military infrastructure in new rocket and artillery attacks in Ukraine. In the Donetsk region, 7 civilians were killed and another 13 injured within 24 hours, the General Staff in Kyiv said. “The area has no gas, partly no water and no electricity. The evacuation of the population is continuing.” In many places, the Russian attacks were successfully repelled, it said. The Ukrainian air force also attacked enemy positions.
Moscow's Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu has criticized the proposals for an EU-wide ban on Russians entering the European Union as "Nazi policy". "Today we still see a clear emergence of Nazi policies when the Russophobic idea of banning all Russian citizens from entering the countries of the EU is actively promoted from the highest European tribunes," Shoigu said at the First International Anti-Fascist Congress nearby from Moscow.
Following his trip to Ukraine, UN Secretary-General António Guterres has arrived in the Turkish metropolis of Istanbul. "So moving to see the Brave Commander ship in Istanbul loaded with tons of Ukrainian wheat," Guterres tweeted. A press conference was scheduled for the afternoon at the control center set up specifically for the grain deal.
The cargo of 23,000 tons of wheat of the "Brave Commander" is destined for Ethiopia within the framework of the World Food Program of the UN (WFP).
According to British intelligence experts, the Russian invasion troops in Ukraine have come under pressure from the increased number of explosions behind their own lines in the south of the country. This emerges from the daily intelligence update on the Ukraine war from the Ministry of Defense in London.
While neither side has made front-line advances in the Kherson region, British experts say the "increasing frequency of explosions behind Russian lines are putting pressure on Russian logistics and air bases in the south."
Overall, there have been only minimal changes to the front lines in the past week. That is unlikely to change in the coming week. According to London, who will take the military initiative in the coming weeks will depend on who manages to produce “convincing, determined forces for offensive operations”.
The Berlin security expert Julia Friedrich has lamented the traditional image of gender relations in the Ukraine war. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and his wife Olena Zelenska presented themselves as "the holy warrior and the beautiful soul at his side," she said in the Berlin Tagesspiegel. However, this is not representative of how the Ukrainian army functioned before February 2022.
Before the Russian invasion, women held around 23 percent of all functions in the army and 15.5 percent of the armed forces, said the security expert at the Berlin Global Public Policy Institute. After the conflict began in 2014, a third of the fighters who volunteered were women. Due to the general mobilization of the men in February, the relationship has shifted again somewhat. Today about ten percent of the armed forces are women.
Ukrainian soldiers are expected to be better able to cope with the psychosocial stress after a combat mission than men, Friedrich said. They should resume their traditional duties after returning from the front, "but there is no changing table in the Veterans Association."
According to the security expert, Ukrainian women were not allowed to hold all positions in the army until 2018 because of their “reproductive function”. "That was still a Soviet legacy." According to surveys, women at the gun still often have to fight for acceptance.
In the dispute over the shelling of the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant, Russia has turned to the UN Security Council with allegations against Ukraine. Ukraine is planning "provocations" there, the news agency TASS quoted from a letter from the Russian government to the committee.
Volodymyr Zelenskyy said in his evening video address that Moscow was planning a "large-scale provocation" at the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant to justify disconnecting the power plant from Ukraine's power grid and connecting it to Russia's power grid.
Representatives of Ukraine have criticized the ongoing fighting in the vicinity of the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant in the south-east of the country. Kyrylo Tymoshenko of Ukraine's Presidential Office said "the danger of an environmental catastrophe of global proportions" remains acute because of the regular shelling of the nuclear facility by Russia. Russian shelling also destroyed "3,700 infrastructure objects" near the largest nuclear power plant in Europe, including facilities for heating, electricity, gas and water supply.
Another explosion occurred on the Crimean peninsula annexed by Russia. According to the authorities, debris from a downed drone hit the headquarters of the Black Sea Fleet in the city of Sevastopol. The fleet's anti-aircraft defenses hit the drone, said the city's chief administrator, Mikhail Rasvozhayev. "She fell on the roof and burned." There are no victims.
China has further increased its purchases of coal and oil from Russia. Russia has been China's top oil supplier for the third straight month, data from Beijing Customs Bureau on Saturday showed. In July, Russian oil imports totaled around 7.15 million tons, up 7.6 percent year-on-year. At the same time, China's coal imports from Russia rose to their highest level in more than five years. According to this, Beijing imported 7.42 million tons of coal from Russia in July – around 14 percent more than last year.
Export of grain through Ukrainian Black Sea ports continues. Two freighters departed from Chornomorsk, according to the Turkish Ministry of Defense. In total, 27 grain ships have left the ports since the resumption of deliveries, which was made possible by an agreement brokered by the United Nations and Turkey. The ports were blocked for months after the start of the Russian war.
Russia reports new Ukrainian drone strikes. The official Russian state agency TASS, citing local officials in Crimea, reports that Russian anti-aircraft guns shot down six Ukrainian drones east of Cherson. Separately, another official in Crimea said Russian defense forces shot down several drones over the city of Sevastopol.
According to a media report, trains with coal, gas or oil on board should be given priority over passenger trains during the energy crisis. Passengers would have to be prepared for disruptions, reports WELT, citing a draft regulation by the federal government to prioritize freight trains.
Citizens may be affected by the plans "due to the failure of rail passenger transport, which is canceled without replacement or has to be postponed due to the priority handling of energy transport by rail". The draft will be passed promptly in its current form, also in view of certain reservations, WELT quotes government circles as saying. The pressure to get the coal transports fully onto the rails is great.
Volodymyr Zelenskyy has accused Russia of using its gas pipelines for blackmail. As an example, he referred to the announcement by the Russian gas company Gazprom that it would stop supplying Germany via the Nord Stream 1 pipeline for three days at the end of August. Without naming FDP Vice Wolfgang Kubicki, Selenskyj spoke of “absurd statements” in Germany about putting Nord Stream 2 into operation.
"Russia only needs these pipelines to create problems in Europe, not to help with gas," he said in Kyiv. The quicker the European states made themselves independent of Russian energy, the sooner they would get through the winter in peace.
Kubicki had called for Russian gas to be obtained through the completed but unused Nord Stream 2 pipeline. He was criticized for this from all sides, because the pipeline is seen as Moscow's instrument for making Germany more dependent on Russia.
Thanks to a fundraising campaign launched by TV presenter Serhiy Prytula, the Ukrainian army has quick access to highly accurate satellite imagery. The combination of reconnaissance images with modern weapons opens up new opportunities for the armed forces in the fight against Russia, Defense Minister Oleksiy Resnikov wrote on Facebook. According to media reports, about 600 million hryvnia (16.2 million euros) have been collected so far.
"Let's assume that soon any HIMARS, M270 or MARS II, as well as any weapon or self-propelled gun with high-precision projectiles, will be able to destroy the enemy more effectively." The mentioned weapon systems are long-range multiple rocket launchers. Ukraine has been using them to fight Russian ammunition depots far behind the front lines for the past few weeks.
The US Department of Defense has announced further arms and ammunition deliveries to Ukraine worth around 775 million dollars (around 772 million euros). Washington wants to provide Ukraine with a "continuous supply of ammunition," a senior Pentagon official told reporters. Kyiv has made good use of the 19 arms deliveries from Washington so far, the government representative added. At the moment there is "no progress" for Russia on the battlefield.
The now announced delivery should include, among other things, precisely controllable rockets for rocket launchers of the Himars type. The system had already enabled the Ukrainian army in the past few weeks to hit Russian command centers and ammunition depots far behind the front line. Anti-tank guided missiles of the TOW and Javelin types will also be part of the next delivery, as well as anti-radar missiles, surveillance drones and howitzers.
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