Day 176 of the Invasion of Ukraine: At least 6 Killed in Russian Bombing of Kharkiv
Here are the highlights of events related to the war in Ukraine over the past 24 hours:
Zelensky, Erdogan and Guterres will talk in Lviv
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres arrived in Ukraine for a tripartite meeting. In a few hours in Lviv, he will meet with the presidents of Ukraine and Turkey.
The visit is at the invitation of Volodymyr Zelensky. The main topic of the meeting will be the agreement concluded in July on the export of Ukrainian grain.
The issue of the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant, around which battles have been taking place in recent weeks, is expected to be touched on.
A bilateral meeting between the UN Secretary-General and the Ukrainian President is also planned. Guterres will visit Odesa on Friday.
The city is one of the ports included in the agreement for the export of Ukrainian grain and other food products through the Black Sea.
Russia said Ukraine was preparing a "provocation" for the UN Secretary General's visit to the Zaporizhzhia NPP
The Russian Defense Ministry has accused Ukraine of planning a "provocation" at the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant in connection with UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres' visit to the nuclear site tomorrow, Reuters reported, citing the Russian state news agency RIA Novosti. In its announcement, the Russian military department denies that Russian heavy weapons are deployed both on the territory of the Russian-controlled plant and in its adjacent areas. The ministry did not provide evidence to support its claim, Reuters noted.
The Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant has been repeatedly shelled in recent weeks, for which Russia and Ukraine have blamed each other. Kyiv said Moscow had deployed artillery in and around the plant.
At least 6 killed in Russian bombing of Kharkiv
At least six people were killed and 16 injured today in a Russian bombardment of Kharkiv. This was announced by the authorities in the second largest Ukrainian city, reported AFP, quoted by BTA.
#Kharkiv tonight. At least 6 dead and 16 injured as of 23:00 (UTC+3). More barbaric shelling by russian terrorists.— Defense of Ukraine (@DefenceU) August 17, 2022
Nowhere in Europe is safe. No amount of blood will satiate the russian beasts. pic.twitter.com/6mt8fGJ6KM
President Volodymyr Zelensky condemned the attack.
"A vile and cynical attack on civilians, which has no justification and shows the powerlessness of the aggressor," he wrote on Telegram. "We will not forgive, we will take revenge," the Ukrainian leader added.
Initially, the mayor of Kharkiv, Igor Terekhov, reported three dead and 10 wounded.
"There is a large fire in the apartment building that was hit," he said.
However, the regional governor Oleg Sinegubov said afterwards that the victims were more.
"Unfortunately, the number of dead and wounded in the bombing... increased: six died and 16 were wounded," Sinegubov said on Telegram.
Located about 40 km from the Russian border in northeastern Ukraine, Kharkiv has been a frequent target of Russian military strikes since the invasion began in late February. However, Moscow's troops never managed to capture the city.
Hundreds of civilians were killed in the Kharkiv region during that time, according to official figures from the Ukrainian authorities.
Increased Russian production has undercut oil prices
Oil prices fell in Asian trade today, reversing yesterday's upward trend, Reuters reported. The main reason for the decline is increased production by Russia and fears of an impending global recession.
European benchmark North Sea Brent futures fell 33 cents, or 0.4 percent, to .32 a barrel.
U.S. light crude lost 40 cents, or 0.5 percent, to .71 a barrel.
On Wednesday, futures rose 1 percent after Brent had previously hit its lowest level since February.
The prices of the black gold have been falling steadily for several months as the released economic data speaks of a slowdown in the global economy, which could lead to a recession.
British intelligence: Russia cannot use dynamic protection for tanks
The heavy attrition of Russia's main battle tanks in Ukraine is most likely due in part to Russia's failure to fit and properly use adequate explosive-reactive armor (ERA), British intelligence reported on the war this morning.
When used correctly, such protection reduces the effectiveness of incoming projectiles before they hit the tank. According to intelligence, this suggests that Russian forces have not changed the culture of ineffective use of dynamic defenses that began during the First Chechen War in 1994.
It is likely that many of the soldiers are not sufficiently trained to maintain such protection. Reactive armor is a type of vehicle armor that reacts to the impact of a weapon to reduce damage to the protected vehicle. It is usually a metal box with a shape and size resembling a brick. The device of each module (brick) includes a metal plate mounted in the box parallel to the armor, and behind the plate, there is a small amount of explosive connected to a part of the same explosive, located, however, in front of the metal plate. When a cumulative jet hits, the charge pushes the plate out, the jet extinguishes and dissipates, falling short of the main armor. The principle is also called counter explosion.
Russia's war against Ukraine has shown multiple failures by Russian commanders to enforce combat discipline, the intelligence report added. This is likely a significant factor in the poor performance of Russian troops, the intelligence services concluded.
More conclusions about the situation at the front
Russian forces have carried out several unsuccessful attacks near the border of Donetsk and Kharkiv regions, where they have to fight in forests - a tactically difficult area.
The Russian army continues its unsuccessful attempts to attack settlements southeast of Seversk (in the Donetsk region). It has also launched several attacks south of Bakhmut and is probably trying to improve her tactical position near Horlivka.
Russian forces have made limited gains northwest of Donetsk and near the administrative border between Zaporizhzhia and Donetsk regions.
Moscow forces are "in all probability preparing to protect their land communications in the Melitopol-Tokmok-Berdyansk triangle by mining settlements on the eastern front in the Zaporizhzhia region," reported the Institute for the Study of War (ISW).
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