Day 562 of the Invasion of Ukraine: Russians hit Kryvyi Rih - Dead and Injured reported
Day 562 of the invasion of Ukraine. Summary of key events in the last 24 hours:
- The first 10 Leopard 1 tanks from Denmark arrived in Ukraine
- Reznikov: Putin wants to destroy Ukraine and assimilate its citizens
- A Russian missile hit a building of the Ukrainian police in Kryvyi Rih, there are dead and injured
- "To save humanity": Musk shut down Starlink during Ukrainian attack
- The US will never recognize the results of the local elections in the occupied territories of Ukraine
- Ukraine said it shot down 16 of 20 kamikaze drones overnight
- Zelensky outlined the priorities of the new Minister of Defense of Ukraine
- Volodymyr Zelensky discussed with Benjamin Netanyahu Israeli support for Kyiv
- London praised the Ukrainian counteroffensive after Sunak's conversation with Zelensky
- 17 arrests in Cuba for a network to recruit Cubans to fight on the side of Russia in Ukraine
The first 10 Leopard 1 tanks from Denmark arrived in Ukraine
The first 10 tanks "Leopard 1" donated by Germany, the Netherlands and Denmark have arrived in Ukraine, and the rest are on their way to the country, reported AFP, citing the Danish armed forces.
The three countries announced in February that they would donate 100 of the German-made tanks "in the coming months" after they are refurbished.
Danish soldiers in Germany are training Ukrainian forces to use the machines. Leopard 1 A5 tanks in Denmark were in use for the defense of the country until 2005, also notes AFP.
"Denmark has sent some of our best tank instructors to Germany to train the Ukrainians to get the most out of this weapon system. And I have no doubt that this will help them win the defensive battle they are currently fighting," the chief said of the Danish Army Rifle Command Arpe Nielsen.
Reznikov: Putin wants to destroy Ukraine and assimilate its citizens
Negotiations with Moscow will not bring peace, and Vladimir Putin remains determined to destroy Ukraine entirely and "assimilate" its citizens into the Russian Federation. This was announced by the former Ukrainian Minister of Defense Oleksii Reznikov to the "Guardian".
"Russia demands the recognition of the occupied territories of Ukraine as its territory in exchange for an end to the war," he believes. "However, this is obviously only for the sake of one thing – to gain some time, regroup and solve the Ukrainian issue with new resources. Russia does not recognize the existence of Ukraine and the Ukrainian people. Its goal is the destruction of Ukrainian statehood and the assimilation of Ukrainians."
Reznikov - who was removed from his post on Sunday by President Volodymyr Zelensky - compared calls for Ukraine to make territorial concessions to international demands on Czechoslovakia in 1938, when it was forced to hand over the Sudetenland to Nazi Germany. The transfer took place at the request of the United Kingdom and France.
"We know from history that this did not stop Hitler. Soon after, the Third Reich had complete control of what was left of Czechoslovakia, including its military arsenal. Putin's actions follow a similar pattern."
Reznikov's departure comes after a series of scandals related to public procurement at the Ministry of Defense. He was not personally involved in corruption schemes and was removed for failing to stop them. Diplomatic sources even indicated that Reznikov could become Ukraine's ambassador to the UK.
Reznikov presents Ukraine's "recipe for victory" to the "Guardian". It includes restoring the country's borders from 1991, withdrawing Russian troops, paying reparations and "punishing war criminals." He wants Ukraine to be integrated into security pacts and "amendments to international law" to prevent "similar aggressions" in the future.
Reznikov calls on the defense ministers of friendly countries to continue their military support for Ukraine.
"I call for unity, courage and consolidated action. This is the only way to save this world from the catastrophe of World War III."
A Russian missile hit a building of the Ukrainian police in Kryvyi Rih, there are dead and injured
A Russian missile struck a police building in the central Ukrainian city of Kryvyi Rih on Friday, killing a police officer and injuring many others, Interior Minister Ihor Klymenko said.
The administrative building of the police was destroyed and rescuers pulled several people out of the rubble after the attack on the hometown of President Volodymyr Zelensky, Klymenko said on "Telegram".
He put the number of injured at 25. In a later statement, regional governor Serhiy Lysak said about 40 people were injured.
"A policeman was killed as a result of a Russian attack," Klymenko said in a Telegram post accompanied by photos showing a building reduced to rubble and rescuers carrying a man out on a stretcher.
Three administrative buildings and seven residential buildings, including a tall building, were damaged, Lysak explained.
A short time later, Klymenko said a Russian airstrike killed three civilians and wounded four others on Friday in a village in southern Ukraine's Kherson region. Klimenko said on "Telegram" that the airstrike was carried out on the village of Odradokamyanka
Ukraine's air force also shot down 16 of 20 Iranian-made Shahed drones fired by Russia overnight in the fifth attack this week on the southern Odesa Oblast, regional and military officials said Friday.
Russia has stepped up airstrikes against Ukrainian grain export infrastructure on the Danube River and in the port of Odesa since mid-July, when Moscow pulled out of a UN-brokered deal that allowed safe exports of Ukrainian grain across the Black Sea. "At night, Russian terrorists attacked Odesa Oblast for the fifth time this week," Oleg Kiper, the Odesa regional governor, said on Telegram.
The Southern Military Command reported that 14 drones were shot down over Odesa Oblast and two more over Mykolaiv Oblast. According to the announcement, the drones were launched from Russia and from Crimea, which was seized and annexed by Russia in 2014.
Kiper clarified that a non-residential building was damaged by drone debris, but did not provide further details. He added that there were no casualties in the Odesa region.
Regional officials said Russia also attacked the southeastern Zaporizhzhia Oblast as well as the northeastern Sumy Oblast with rockets, injuring several people.
Ukraine's emergency services said two people were injured in the Sumy Oblast and released a video showing rescuers pulling an injured woman out of a hole caused by the explosion.
A statement said the 65-year-old woman and 70-year-old man were rescued after damage was done to a two-story apartment building.
Russia did not immediately comment on the latest attacks.
"To save humanity": Musk shut down Starlink during Ukrainian attack
Billionaire Elon Musk, owner of the Starlink network of satellites for direct Internet access, has cut off access to it for the Ukrainian military during its naval drone operation against the Russian base in Sevastopol. In October, he also did this for offensive operations in the Donbas Oblast and the newly annexed territories in southern and eastern Ukraine.
This is what the famous American biographer Walter Isaacson tells in his new book "Elon Musk", an excerpt from which was published by the Washington Post. It is the result of contacts with dozens of sources, as well as long hours of conversations with Musk himself over months.
The billionaire himself revealed his decision in mid-February. But now new and far more dramatic details are emerging.
In his book, Isaacson describes how Starlink played a pivotal role for Ukraine after the start of Russian aggression on February 24, including for the military, and the company's contribution by donating thousands of devices to connect to the network. But by September, both Musk and the military leaders in Ukraine and the United States realized that this relationship was much more complicated.
"One Friday night that month, just after spending a week with Musk, I returned home to New Orleans (...). My phone started vibrating with messages from Musk. 'This could be a huge disaster,' he wrote. (...) He was in full mode of his typical crisis-hero-drama situation, this time understandably so. A dangerous problem had arisen, and he believed there was a 'non-trivial possibility,' as he put it, that it would lead to nuclear war - with Starlink partially responsible. The Ukrainian military was trying to covertly attack the Russian navy based at Sevastopol in Crimea by sending six small drone submarines loaded with explosives and using Starlink to guide them to the target," the biography tells.
According to Isaacson, the billionaire supported Ukraine, but considered it reckless to attack Crimea, illegally annexed by Russia in 2014.
"He had just spoken to the Russian ambassador to the United States. (In later conversations with several other people, he implied that he spoke directly to President Vladimir Putin, but told me that his communications went through the ambassador.) The ambassador had specifically told him that a Ukrainian attack on Crimea would result in a nuclear response. Musk explained to me in great detail, as I listened to him on the phone, the Russian laws and doctrines that mandate such a response."
Musk then took the situation personally because he believed that using Starlink for the attack could lead to catastrophe for the world. So he secretly told his engineers to turn off coverage within 100 kilometers of the Crimean coast. As a result, the Ukrainian drones became disconnected and the sea washed them ashore.
The Ukrainian military immediately bombarded him with messages to restore communication, but he refused, arguing that Ukraine "has now gone too far and is asking for a strategic defeat."
Musk discussed the situation with Jake Sullivan (National Security Advisor to President Joe Biden) and General Mark Milley (Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff), explaining that he did not want Starlink to be used for offensive purposes. He also spoke to the Russian ambassador to assure him that Starlink was being used for defensive purposes only.
"If the Ukrainian attacks had succeeded in sinking the Russian fleet, it would have been like a mini Pearl Harbor and lead to a major escalation. We didn't want to be a part of that."
This was followed by his famous proposal of a plan to end the war in Ukraine, including new referendums in the Donbas and other Russian-controlled regions, accepting that Crimea is part of Russia and assuring that Ukraine should remain a "neutral country rather than becoming part of NATO. President Volodymyr Zelensky launched a poll on "Twitter", which Musk do people like more: "The one who supports Ukraine" or "The one who supports Russia".
Musk went into explanatory mode, stating that "SpaceX's cost to activate and support Starlink in Ukraine is about 80 million US dollars so far," and "our support for Russia is 0 dollars. We are obviously for Ukraine." He then added: "An attempt to retake Crimea would cause mass death, probably fail and risk nuclear war. That would be terrible for Ukraine and the Earth."
The US will never recognize the results of the local elections in the occupied territories of Ukraine
The United States will never recognize the results of local elections organized by Russia in the occupied territories of Ukraine, said US Secretary of State Antony Blinken.
In a post on social media, he called the vote "fake" and rejected any territorial claims by Moscow on Ukrainian territories.
The Russian embassy in the United States described Blinken's statement as "interference in Russia's internal affairs."
Russia does not fully control the four Oblasts in which the elections are being held - Donetsk, Luhansk, Zaporizhzhia and Kherson.
Together with Moscow's annexed Crimean Peninsula, they represent nearly a fifth of Ukraine. Voting will continue until September 10.
Ukraine said it shot down 16 of 20 kamikaze drones overnight
The Air Force of Ukraine announced in its morning report about 16 downed drones.
According to the announcement, Russia attacked Odesa Oblast with Shahed-136/131 kamikaze drones sent in several groups.
In total, 20 launches were registered in this direction, and 16 drones were destroyed in Odesa and Mykolaiv Oblasts, the statement said.
Russia has been carrying out near-daily strikes on Odesa Oblast, claiming the target is the production of maritime unmanned aerial vehicles. The Ukrainian authorities, in turn, have reported a systematic destruction of port infrastructure on the Danube River, which is used for wheat exports, after the termination of the grain deal.
The Air Force of Ukraine did not mention a missile in the report, while the authorities of the Sumy Oblast reported a missile attack on Sumy in the morning, notes the Russian edition of the BBC. "As a result of the blast wave, windows of multi-story buildings and educational institutions were damaged. The counting of damages continues. So far, it is known that one person has been injured," said the acting deputy minister.
Zelensky outlined the priorities of the new Minister of Defense of Ukraine
President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky told new Ukrainian Defense Minister Rustem Umierov that he must restore confidence in his department and reduce bureaucracy after a series of allegations of corruption scandals in the ministry, Reuters reported.
Zelensky removed Umierov’s predecessor after accusations of accepting bribes made to defense ministry officials by Ukrainian media, most of them related to procurement. Military analysts say the change of defense minister will not have much impact on Ukraine's actions on the battlefield.
Zelensky introduced Umierov to high-ranking Ukrainian military and defense officials. The Ukrainian president also outlined Umierov’s priorities as defense minister, including developing international cooperation and leading Ukraine on its path to NATO membership.
"But, what is more important, we need more trust. Trust in the decisions that are made, trust in the procurement process, trust in the supplies," said Zelensky.
He added that if changes are needed for the good of the Ukrainian military, they should be made immediately.
"We need a new philosophy of treatment of Ukrainian servicemen. People are not disposable," he said.
Forty-one-year-old Umierov replaced Oleksii Reznikov as Defense Minister, who helped Kyiv secure billions of dollars in Western military aid to Ukraine. No corruption charges were brought against Reznikov himself, but he became the victim of a smear campaign.
Umierov said today that his priorities will be to make the Ministry of Defense the main institution for the coordination of defense forces and that he will work to make each individual soldier more significant. He also promised to develop the Ukrainian military industry and fight corruption.
Umierov also said he would seek to strengthen the international coalition of Ukraine's allies and likely establish "unexpected partnerships."
Zelensky, on the other hand, emphasized that he believes that Umierov is capable of fulfilling all the tasks set before him.
Before his appointment as defense minister, Umierov headed Ukraine's privatization agency and earned a reputation for reforming the institution and for restarting the agency's efforts to sell loss-making state-owned companies to private investors despite the war.
Volodymyr Zelensky discussed with Benjamin Netanyahu Israeli support for Kyiv
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu discussed ways in which Israel can support Kyiv in the conflict against Russia, the Ukrainian leader's office said, Reuters reported.
Zelensky has previously called on Israel to provide more open support for Kyiv and has criticized its attempts to maintain an impartial approach during the 18-month-old war.
"The president noted the importance of Israel's support for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine," read the statement on the website of the Ukrainian presidency regarding the conversation between the two leaders. "The two sides discussed possible ways of Israeli support for Ukraine in its fight against the Russian invasion," the text also says.
Israel has provided Kyiv with humanitarian and diplomatic support, but not weapons, as it recognizes that it needs to coordinate with Moscow airstrikes it is carrying out against Iranian targets in neighboring Syria, given the fact that the Kremlin has influence over Damascus.
Netanyahu's office said the two leaders discussed "the continuation of Israeli aid to Ukraine, including for Ukrainian refugees in Israel, as well as progress in the development of civilian air defense systems."
The Israeli prime minister also asked Zelensky to ensure safe conditions for the annual pilgrimage of Hasidic Jews from around the world to the city of Uman in central Ukraine, where Rabbi Nachman of Breslov, who revived the Hasidic movement and died in 1810, is buried.
Zelensky, who is of Jewish descent, said Ukraine was happy to welcome the pilgrims, but noted that the bomb shelters had a capacity of only 11,000 people, while Israel estimated that up to 50,000 people could arrive at the site.
"This is a security challenge that will require an urgent joint response," the Ukrainian president said in a statement.
London praised the Ukrainian counteroffensive after Sunak's conversation with Zelensky
The British government praised the Ukrainian counteroffensive after some representatives of Western countries expressed the opinion that it was developing more slowly than expected, PA media and DPA reported.
British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak held a telephone conversation with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky today and received from him up-to-date information on the development of the counteroffensive.
The two leaders also discussed the impact of the grain blockade imposed on the Black Sea by Russian President Vladimir Putin.
In his conversation with Zelensky, the British Prime Minister "praised the Ukrainian armed forces for their continuous progress on the battlefield".
Asked by a journalist whether Sunak also believed that the counteroffensive was developing more slowly than expected, a spokesman for the British prime minister said: "No. It's not my job to talk about the operational progress of the Ukrainian armed forces, but I think it is clear that the Ukrainian military is doing a great job against a much larger army and they should be commended for their efforts."
17 arrests in Cuba for a network to recruit Cubans to fight on the side of Russia in Ukraine
Seventeen people have been arrested in Cuba for their alleged links to a human trafficking network operating in Russia to recruit men to join the war in Ukraine, world agencies reported, citing the Cuban Interior Ministry.
The network recruited and sent Cubans living in Russia or residents of Cuba to Ukraine.
The nationalities of the detainees have not been disclosed. They can be charged with human trafficking, mercenary work and hostilities carried out from the territory of a foreign country, for which they can receive up to 30 years in prison, life in prison or even the death penalty.
American media reported a case of two young Cubans who were recruited by the traffickers' network through Facebook, being lied to that they would work for the Russian forces in Ukraine, but not as soldiers, but as bricklayers in Ukraine.
The Cuban government denies any complicity with Moscow in its intervention in Ukraine.
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