Ukraine War: More drone strikes, new military aid and Russian attacks

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Drone attack on Russian Black Sea HQ in occupied Crimea

A drone attack on Saturday targeted the headquarters of the Russian Black Sea Fleet in Sevastopol, without causing injuries, according to the governor of the city of the annexed Crimean peninsula.

“The drone was shot down just above the fleet headquarters, fell on the roof and caught fire,” Mikhail Razvojaev wrote on Telegram.

The incident “caused no serious damage” or injuries, he said, attributing the attack to Ukrainian forces.

This is the second drone attack on the Sevastopol facility headquarters in less than a month.

On July 31, a drone landed in the courtyard of Fleet Headquarters, injuring five employees and causing the cancellation of all planned Russian Fleet Day festivities that day.

Accused by Russia of being behind the attack, Ukraine has denied its involvement, calling the accusations a “provocation”.

The new attack comes amid a series of explosions and attacks on Russian military infrastructure in Crimea.

On Thursday evening, Russian forces shot down a drone near a military airfield in Sevastopol.

On Tuesday, explosions occurred at a military base and an ammunition depot in Crimea, which Russia called an act of “sabotage”.

At the beginning of August, an explosion of ammunition intended for military aviation near the Saki military airfield in Crimea left one dead and several injured.

US donates more high-tech military equipment to Ukraine

The United States will provide Ukraine with Scan Eagle surveillance drones, mine-resistant vehicles, anti-armour shells and howitzers to help Ukrainian forces regain territory and mount a counteroffensive against Russian invaders.

A senior defense official tells reporters that a new $775 million aid package will include 15 Scan Eagles, 40 mine-resistant and ambush-protected vehicles known as MRAPs with mine rollers , and 2,000 anti-armour shells that can help Ukrainian troops advance. to the south and east, where Russian forces have placed mines. The official said the United States was seeking to help shape and arm Ukraine’s future force as the war drags on.

“These capabilities are carefully calibrated to make the most difference on the battlefield and strengthen Ukraine’s position at the negotiating table,” Secretary of State Antony Blinken said in a statement.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy tweeted his appreciation for the package, saying, “We have taken another important step to defeat the aggressor.”

This latest aid comes as Russia’s war on Ukraine is about to reach the six-month mark. That brings total US military aid to Ukraine to around $10.6 billion since the start of the Biden administration. This is the 19th time the Pentagon has provided Ukraine with equipment from Department of Defense stockpiles since August 2021.

The United States has provided howitzer ammunition in the past, but this is the first time it will send 16 of the weapon systems. The aid package also includes 1,500 anti-tank missiles, 1,000 javelin missiles and an undisclosed number of high-velocity, anti-radiation or HARM missiles that target radar systems. Ukrainian forces successfully used various precision artillery systems in an attempt to hold off Russian forces and retake territory gained by Moscow.

Twelve injured in Russian attack near nuclear power plant

Twelve Ukrainians were injured on Saturday in a Russian attack in Voznesensk, a city near a nuclear power plant in the south of the country, Ukrainian authorities said, accusing Moscow of “nuclear terrorism”.

“According to initial information, 12 people, including three children, were injured. Two children are in serious condition” after the attack in the Mykolayev region, the prosecution said on Telegram.

Earlier in the day, regional governor Vitaly Kim had reported on the same network that nine people had been injured, including four children between the ages of 3 and 17, who he said were “all in serious condition”.

Voznesensk is about twenty kilometers as the crow flies from the Ukrainian nuclear power plant of Privdennoukrainsk, the second most powerful in Ukraine, which has a total of four atomic power plants.

A Russian strike in the 30-kilometer zone around the plant “is another cynical act of nuclear terrorism by Russia,” Ukrainian nuclear power plant operator Energoatom wrote on Telegram.

“It cannot be excluded that this missile was fired in the direction of the Pivdennukrainsk nuclear power plant, which the Russian army already tried to seize in early March,” Energoatom said.

Macron denounces the Russian invasion, hours after negotiating a nuclear inspection agreement

French President Emmanuel Macron said Russia had launched a “brutal attack” on Ukraine in an imperialist and revengeful violation of international law.

Macron made the comments at a ceremony marking the 78th anniversary of the Allied landings in Nai-occupied Provence during World War II, and just hours after speaking to Putin and helping broker a deal allowing nuclear inspectors to UN to visit a critical factory in Ukraine.

Macron, who has tried tirelessly but unsuccessfully to prevent the invasion and has long touted the importance of dialogue with Putin, has become increasingly critical of the Russian president as the war continues.

He warned French citizens that the resulting energy and economic crisis for Europe was not over, calling it “the price of our freedom and our values”.

“Since Vladimir Putin launched his brutal attack on Ukraine, war has returned to European soil, hours away from us,” Macron said on Friday.

Macron said Putin was seeking to impose his “imperialist will” on Europe, conjuring up “the ghosts of the spirit of revenge” in a “flagrant violation of the integrity of states”.

Read more in our story here.

Ukrainian airstrike hits targets in Russian-occupied town

A Ukrainian airstrike hit targets in the largest Russian-occupied city in the southern region of Zaporizhzhia, according to local Ukrainian and Kremlin-backed officials.

Ukraine’s mayor of Melitopol said preliminary reports pointed to “a definite hit” at a Russian military base. The head of the Kremlin-backed administration said the attack damaged residential areas and lightly injured a civilian.

In its daily update, the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine said that intensified fighting had taken place around Bakhmut, a small town whose capture would allow Russia to threaten the two largest remaining Ukrainian urban centers. in the eastern region of Donbass.

Bakhmut has for weeks been a key target in Moscow’s eastern offensive as the Russian military tries to complete a months-long campaign to conquer all of Donbass, an industrial region that borders Russia where pro-separatists -Moscow have declared themselves a pair of independent republics.

A local Ukrainian official reported heavy fighting on Saturday morning near four settlements on the border between Lugansk and Donetsk provinces, which together form the disputed region.


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