Latest news on Russia and the war in Ukraine

The Kremlin says France and Germany have shown “no desire” to mediate over Ukraine

Moscow says France and Germany have shown “no desire” to participate in mediation over the Ukraine conflict, and praises Turkey’s willingness to hold talks.

“[Turkish capital] Ankara takes a different position from that of Paris and Berlin … and has declared its readiness to continue mediation efforts,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitri Peskov told reporters.

He added that French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz have so far shown “no desire to listen to Russia’s position or participate in mediation efforts.”

Macron said on Sunday that the terms of peace should be dictated by Ukraine.

– Natasha Turak

Ukraine’s foreign minister asks UN nuclear watchdog to inspect its facilities to disprove Russian ‘dirty bomb’ allegation

Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba asked the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency Rafael Grossi to send a team of experts to Ukraine to inspect its nuclear facilities, in order to disprove the Russia’s allegation that it has a “dirty bomb” it plans to use on its territory.

Grossi, the head of the IAEA, which is the UN’s nuclear watchdog agency, “agreed” to Kuleba’s request to “urgently send experts to peaceful structures in Ukraine,” the minister wrote on Twitter.

“Unlike Russia, Ukraine has always been and remains transparent. We have nothing to hide,” added Kuleba. In a separate tweet, he said he had spoken to EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell, who “welcomed Ukraine’s decision to invite IAEA experts”.

– Natasha Turak

UK Ministry of Defense says Ukraine increasingly successful in shooting down Iranian drones

Local residents look at parts of an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), what Ukrainian authorities believe to be an Iranian-made Shahed-136 drone, following the attack by Russian drones, amid Russia’s attack on Ukraine, in Kiev, Ukraine on October 17, 2022.

Vladyslav Musiienko | Reuters

Russia has used Iranian-made Shahed-136 drones in several parts of Ukraine to target critical infrastructure and civilian areas, the UK Ministry of Defense said in its latest intelligence update, but it has added that the use of Ukrainian forces of anti-drone technology has become. more effective.

“Russia continues to use Iranian unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) against targets across Ukraine. Ukrainian efforts to defeat Shahed-136 UAVs are increasingly successful,” the ministry said in a Twitter post.

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Ukrainian President Zelenskyy and other officials claim that up to 85% of attacks have been intercepted, the ministry wrote, adding “These UAVs are slow, noisy and fly at low altitude, making lone aircraft easy to target with and conventional air defenses”.

The drones are likely to be used as a replacement for Russia’s long-range precision-guided missiles, which he said are “becoming increasingly scarce.”

– Natasha Turak

Zelenskyy calls Kremlin claim ‘dirty bomb’, says only Russia will use nuclear weapons in Europe

“The morning is difficult. We dealt with terrorists. Dozens of missiles, Iranian ‘Shahids’,” Zelenskyy wrote on his official Telegram account, referring to the increasingly used Iranian Shahid drones by Russian forces.

Ukrinform | Future Publishing | Getty Images

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has said that Russia is the only actor that will spread nuclear weapons in Europe, citing its destruction of Ukrainian infrastructure over the past eight months.

His comments came in response to Kremlin claims, without evidence, that Ukraine was preparing to use a “dirty bomb” – which uses nuclear fission to contaminate a large area with radioactivity, without using an explosion – in its territory.

It was Russia that used “nuclear blackmail” at the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant in Ukraine, which has been under Russian occupation since March, as well as using phosphorus munitions and other prohibited weapons of new civilian infrastructure, Zelenskyy has said

He added that such a statement only meant that Russia was the one preparing to spread the weapon it accused Ukraine of having.

In response, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov reiterated the Russian position that Ukraine plans to use a “dirty bomb” on its territory to escalate the conflict with Russia.

“His distrust of the information that was provided by the Russian side does not mean that the threat of using such an ugly bomb does not exist,” Peskov told the press.

“Such a threat exists, and the minister of defense has given information about it to his interlocutors. It is up to them whether to trust him or not.”

– Natasha Turak

‘Ukraine has neither the ability nor the need to use dirty bombs,’ says ex-British ambassador

Ukraine “has neither the ability nor the need to use the dirty bomb,” wrote a senior fellow on Russia and Eurasia at the International Institute for Strategic Studies, Nigel Gould-Davies, in a thread on Twitter.

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“[Russian Defense Minister] Shoigu’s round of calls with the United States, the United Kingdom, France and Turkey, which says that Ukraine is planning to use a “dirty bomb” is worrying. We have not seen anything like this intense military diplomacy since the beginning of the war. Its substance is even more worrying,” wrote Gould-Davies, who was previously the UK ambassador to Belarus.

“Of course, Ukraine has neither the ability nor the need to use the dirty bomb. It is Russia that loses. Nor will anyone believe in Shoigu anyway – esp. [UK Defense Minister] Ben Wallace, who was lied to during his pre-invasion visit to Moscow.

“Shoigu also warned of ‘uncontrolled escalation’. It is Russia that is escalating… It is so difficult to see these calls as anything other than Shoigu either doubling down on Putin’s bluffs, or preparing the way for Russian nuclear use. Yes, nuclear (ie fission). ), “Gould-Davies added. “A dirty bomb violates the nuclear taboo but does not achieve significant effects.”

– Natasha Turak

US rejects Russian claims Ukraine will use ‘dirty bomb’

US and Ukrainian officials have dismissed Moscow’s claims that Ukraine plans to use a “dirty bomb”, calling them “clearly false”.

The allegation was made by Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu in a round of high-level calls with Western defense chiefs. Shoigu expressed “concerns about possible provocations by Ukraine with the use of a ‘dirty bomb,'” according to Russia’s defense ministry.

Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu and Chief of the General Staff of the Russian Armed Forces Valery Gerasimov attend a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow, Russia on February 27, 2022.

Aleksey Nikolsky | Sputnik | Reuters

A “dirty bomb” is made to contaminate a large area with radioactivity, making it harmful or uninhabitable for residents there, without using a nuclear explosion.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken told his Ukrainian counterpart Dmytro Kuleba that “the United States rejects Russian Defense Minister Shoygu’s transparently false allegations that Ukraine was preparing to use a dirty bomb on its territory and that the world would see through any attempt by Russia to use this accusation as a pretext for escalation,” according to a statement from the White House.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy also criticized the Russian accusation.

“If Russia calls and says that Ukraine is allegedly preparing something, it means one thing: Russia has already prepared all this,” Zelenskyy said in his address at night.

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– Natasha Turak

Macron of France says that the terms of peace with Russia must be decided by Ukraine

French President Emmanuel Macron gestures during a press conference on the final day of the NATO Heads of State summit in Madrid on June 30, 2022.

Bertrand Guay | AFP | Getty Images

French President Emmanuel Macron said that the terms of peace with Moscow should be decided by Ukraine, emphasizing that the end of the war “cannot be the consecration of the law of the strongest”.

“To remain neutral would mean accepting the world order of the strongest, and I don’t agree with that,” Macron said from Rome on Sunday, as the three-day Cry for Peace conference began.

Macron added that the international community will be receptive when the government of Ukraine decides on that time.

Ukrainian forces are gradually retaking territory occupied and illegally annexed by Russia, and while Moscow seems increasingly behind, its ability to wreak havoc on Ukraine’s cities and vital infrastructure remains intact and analysts fear which could use more extreme measures in retaliation. such as nuclear weapons.

– Natasha Turak

More than 1 million Ukrainian homes are without power

Smoke rises above buildings after a Russian missile attack on critical infrastructure in Lviv on October 10, 2022. Russia launched 15 rockets in the Lviv region, some of which were shot down by the air defense forces, the rest hit the energy infrastructure. Due to the rocket attack, Lviv was left without electricity, water and mobile communication.

Soup Images | Lightrocket | Getty Images

Russian attacks on critical energy infrastructure in Ukraine have left more than 1 million homes in the country without power, Ukraine’s deputy head of the presidency Kyrylo Tymoshenko said over the weekend. Towns and cities across Ukraine have faced power outages this month due to Russian attacks, prompting fears of what could be in store for the coming winter.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy urged his fellow citizens to be careful about the use of power.

“We have to consume electricity very consciously. Please remember to limit the use of unnecessary and energy-consuming appliances… It is necessary to be really frugal with the consumption of energy in public space,” he said in the his Sunday night address.

– Natasha Turak

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