Thursday, December 1, 2022

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+ Ukraine war news blog + The US has no evidence of a Russian nuclear attack

Day 230 from the beginning of the war: several Ukrainian cities were bombed. According to the emergency services, the number of victims is on the rise. All information in the news blog.

20:28: The

The United States still has no evidence of Russian preparations for a nuclear weapons deployment in Ukraine. “We see no evidence, nothing to suggest that (Kremlin head Vladimir) Putin has decided to use nuclear or mass destruction weapons in Ukraine,” White House communications director John Kirby said Tuesday in Washington. Furthermore, there are no signs that the responsible authorities are preparing for such a decision, he said.

Russia recently annexed four Ukrainian occupied territories in violation of international law and Putin, among others, announced that he would defend them by all means available. In doing so, the head of the Kremlin fueled concerns that Russia could use tactical nuclear weapons with limited ranges on the battlefield. The United States has already warned the Russian leadership in direct contacts that the use of such weapons will have serious consequences. At the same time, the White House declined to publicly comment on what these consequences might be.

18:45: In a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Rafael Grossi, called for a protection zone around Ukraine’s Zaporizhia nuclear power plant. “We must not waste time,” Grossi said after Tuesday’s meeting in St. Petersburg, according to the announcement. The situation around the Russian-occupied nuclear power plant is “increasingly dangerous, unstable and challenging” due to frequent military attacks.

To avoid a nuclear accident, Grossi proposed the establishment of a ceasefire zone. Demilitarization with the withdrawal of troops is not part of the plan. Kremlin head Putin said in greeting that Russia is ready to discuss the “situation” surrounding the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant. “In any case, we are open to this dialogue and we are happy to see you.”

The IAEA Director General met with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy in Kiev last week. However, Grossi subsequently reported no progress regarding the protection zone. Ukraine calls for the withdrawal of Russian troops from Europe’s largest nuclear power plant. Grossi wants to return to Kiev this week.

18:04: According to Ukrainian sources, Russia released 32 prisoners of war as part of a prisoner exchange. “Among the freed are officers, non-commissioned officers and soldiers of the armed forces. They were all in places where fierce fighting was taking place. Many of these people were listed as missing,” Ukrainian Presidency Chief of Staff Andriy Yermak said via Telegram. .

The body of the Israeli Dmytro Fialka has also been transferred. Fialka volunteered to fight for Ukraine.

17:48: G7 leaders have warned Russia against the use of biological, chemical or nuclear weapons. This would have serious consequences, according to a joint statement following a video link of the seven most important Western industrialized countries.

16:39: Ukraine is said to have received the first German Iris-T SLM air defense system. The “Spiegel” reports it. The handover is said to have taken place on Tuesday at the border with Poland. The federal government recently announced plans to supply a total of four systems in Ukraine.

Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht (SPD) had already announced an early delivery on Monday. The first handover was originally scheduled for November.

The system is intended to protect the civilian population from air strikes. The Russian army has launched missile attacks on several Ukrainian cities since the beginning of the week.

16:39: Russia has included the American internet giant Meta on a list of “terrorist and extremist” organizations. The classification of the parent company of the online networks Facebook and Instagram was carried out by the Russian financial supervisor, its website reads Tuesday. The move will make it easier for Russian authorities to prosecute users in Russia.

Meta is now on the same list of right-wing nationalist groups, foreign terrorist organizations and Russian opposition groups. In March, the authorities had already banned Meta for “extremist activities” and blocked access to Facebook and Instagram. They accused Meta of tolerating “russophobia”.

However, many Russians have since resorted to VPN services to continue using online networks. Instagram is particularly popular in Russia and was an important platform for advertising and sales.

15:30: NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg announced further military aid to government forces in Kiev following massive Russian air strikes against Ukraine. Read more about this here.

15:13: After the serious Russian attacks on energy infrastructure in Ukraine, the Ukrainian government has called on the population to save electricity. “Today we ask you to limit your electricity consumption,” Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Schmyhal wrote on the Telegram online service on Tuesday. No energy-intensive devices should be turned on between 5pm and 11pm.

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