Friday, December 9, 2022

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+ News blog about the war in Ukraine + Kiev: part of the infrastructure destroyed

Day 231 since the beginning of the war: missile attacks on Ukrainian cities continue. More defense systems are on the way. All information in the news blog.

13:23: According to reports, heavy Russian air strikes have begun

Kiev has hit about 30 percent of Ukraine’s energy infrastructure since Monday. It was the first time since the start of the war in late February that Russia has “dramatically targeted” energy infrastructure, Ukrainian Energy Minister Herman Halushchenko told US broadcaster CNN on Tuesday (local time).

Halushchenko said one reason for the attacks was that Ukrainian electricity exports would help European countries use less Russian gas and coal. The Ukrainian energy system is “still stable”. She urged other countries to “deploy air defense systems that could really help us protect our infrastructure”.

More than seven and a half months after the war began, Russia launched dozens of rockets in various parts of Ukraine on Monday. On Tuesday, Russia then specifically bombed the western Ukrainian region of Lviv. According to the local military administration, four substations were completely destroyed. After that, nearly a third of the residents were temporarily without electricity.

11 clock: The Ukrainian leadership rejects the Russian investigation into the explosion of the Crimean bridge. The whole activity of the Russian internal secret service FSB and the investigative committee makes no sense, says Andriy Yusov, a spokesman for the Interior Ministry in Kiev, according to Ukrainian broadcaster Suspilne. The FSB and the commission of inquiry have only served the Putin regime, Jussow says, referring to Russian President Vladimir Putin. “Therefore, we will definitely not comment on his upcoming statements.” According to the FSB, the explosion on the bridge was organized by the main intelligence department of the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense.

10:06: According to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant is again cut off from external power. The nuclear power plant will again be powered by its emergency diesel generators, IAEA chief Rafael Grossi writes on Twitter. “Our team at the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant informed me this morning that the plant has lost all external energy for the second time in five days.” It calls once again for a safety zone around Europe’s largest nuclear power plant to avoid fighting near the power plant.

9:25: According to British information, Russia has also used Iranian combat drones in its massive missile attacks on Ukrainian cities. The Shahed unmanned missiles are slow and fly very low, making them easy to hit for air defense, the Ministry of Defense in London said Wednesday. However, there is a “realistic possibility” that Russia has had some success with the use of multiple drones at the same time, he said, citing the intelligence findings.

Russian troops have been using Iranian drones, including the Shahed-136 kamikaze drones, since at least August, the ministry said. “Despite a reported range of 2,500 kilometers, the Shahed-136 has a low explosive payload.” The drone is therefore unlikely to achieve the desired effect.

8:20: According to the authorities, eight people were arrested due to the explosion of the Crimean bridge, which is strategically important for Russia. “To date, five Russian citizens and three citizens of Ukraine and Armenia have been arrested in connection with the criminal case,” the press service of the Russian secret service FSB said Wednesday, according to the Interfax news agency. Read more about this here.

8:06: According to Russian media, five explosions were heard in the morning in the city of Kherson in southern Ukraine, occupied by Russian troops. According to unofficial information, air defense systems have been launched. Cherson is the administrative headquarters of the region of the same name and one of the first cities to fall in the Russian invasion that began on February 24.

Furthermore, Ivan Fedorov, the exiled mayor of the Russian-occupied city of Melitopol in the Zaporizhia region, reports on Telegram that there has been a huge explosion in his city. The two Ukrainian regions, such as Luhansk and Donetsk, have been annexed to Russia, which is not recognized internationally.

8 o’clock: Shortly after Russia’s new missile attacks on dozens of Ukrainian cities, Germany delivered the Iris-T SLM air defense system to the country. This was announced by Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksiy Reznikov on Twitter. “A new era of air defense” has now begun. He expressly thanked Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht (SPD) for her strong support for Ukraine, which has been fighting a Russian invasion since February.

Germany initially wants to supply Kiev with four of the 140 million euro systems of the Iris-T ground type, the financing of a further three has been secured. The system consists of several components: radar installation, command post and three truck-mounted rocket launchers.

6:38 am: The latest Russian missile attacks have hit more than 10 cities, including Lviv, Bakhmut, Avdiivka and Zaporizhia, according to the Ukrainian army. “In the past 24 hours, the occupiers have again resorted to massive missile attacks: more than 30 cruise missiles, seven air strikes and 25 bombing cases,” the military said. The Ukrainian army killed more than 100 Russian soldiers in the southern Kherson region. There is initially no information on the victims from the Ukrainian side. Reuters was unable to independently verify the fighting reports.

6 o’clock: Ukraine hopes for better air defense thanks to German and American weapons systems. Russian rocket attacks continue, but Ukrainian President Zelenskii speaks of an early reconstruction. Read here the events of the evening.

4 o’clock: In its most recent assessment, the US “Institute for the Study of War” assumes that Russia is loading trains with weapons, equipment, ammunition and other material from Belarus to move them to operational areas further south and east. This would speak against the direct participation of Belarus in the war in Ukraine. On Monday, ruler Alexander Lukashenko announced that he would set up a joint military unit with the Russian army.

2:20: Air raid warnings were launched on Wednesday night in several Ukrainian cities, including Kiev and Odessa. The warnings were lifted shortly after, only for Mykolaiv the alarm was still maintained according to the official Telegram channel. Nothing was initially known about impacts or damage.

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