Wednesday, December 7, 2022

Russia’s “Special Operation” in Ukraine; Day 266: G20 calls for Russia’s complete withdrawal from Ukraine

Russia, wary of NATO’s eastward expansion, began a military campaign in Ukraine on February 24 after the Western-leaning Kiev government turned a deaf ear to Moscow’s calls for its neighbor to maintain its neutrality. In the middle of the mayhem, Moscow and Kiev are trying to hammer out a peaceful solution to the conflict. Follow the latest about the Russia-Ukraine conflict here:

Explosions in Poland likely caused by Ukraine: NATO

A Ukrainian air defence missile likely caused an explosion in eastern Poland, NATO said.

NATO added there was no indication of a deliberate attack or that Russia was preparing offensive military actions against the bloc.

But, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg told reporters that the blame for the explosions lies with Russia.

“This is not Ukraine’s fault. Russia bears ultimate responsibility as it continues its illegal war against Ukraine,” he said.


‘Very likely’ that the missile came from Ukraine: Poland

President Andrzej Duda says it is “very likely” that the missile that struck a Polish border village was from Ukraine’s air defence.

“Absolutely nothing indicates that this was an intentional attack on Poland … It’s very likely that it was a rocket used in anti-missile defence, meaning that it was used by Ukraine’s defence forces,” he told reporters.


Some countries made ‘baseless statements’: Russia

The Kremlin says that some countries have made “baseless statements” about an explosion in Polish territory near the Ukrainian border on Tuesday.

Spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters that Russia had nothing to do with the incident, which he said had been caused by an S-300 air defence system.

He added that he did not know if special communication channels had been activated with Washington or NATO but that the American response had been “restrained” compared to that of other countries.


Russia says blast caused by Ukraine air defence

Russia’s Defence Ministry claimed that a Ukrainian air defence missile had caused an explosion in Polish territory on Tuesday.

“The photos published in the evening of November 15 in Poland of the wreckage found in the village of Przewodow are unequivocally identified by Russian defence industry specialists as elements of an anti-aircraft guided missile of the S-300 air defence system of the Ukrainian air force,” RIA news agency quoted the defence ministry as saying.

NATO member Poland’s president stated that Warsaw had no concrete evidence to determine who fired a missile that struck a Polish grain facility some 6 km (4 miles) inside the border with Ukraine, killing two people.


Power supply being restored in Ukraine

The power supply is gradually being restored across Ukraine, a day after Russian air strikes targeted its energy infrastructure.

Around ten million Ukrainians were left without electricity.

President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said on social media, “After yesterday’s rocket strikes, I was informed in the morning that most of the subscribers were reconnected,”

“Our engineers and rescuers worked all night in different regions,” he added, vowing to “defeat all enemies”.


G20 calls for Russia’s ‘complete, unconditional withdrawal’ from Ukraine

In a joint declaration, G20 member states have called for Russia’s “complete and unconditional withdrawal from the territory of Ukraine”.

The declaration, adopted at G20 Bali Summit in Indonesia, said that “most members strongly condemned the war in Ukraine,” and the war is “causing immense human suffering and exacerbating existing fragilities in the global economy – constraining growth, increasing inflation, disrupting supply chains, heightening energy and food insecurity, and elevating financial stability risks”.

“The use or threat of use of nuclear weapons is inadmissible. The peaceful resolution of conflicts, efforts to address crises, as well as diplomacy and dialogue, are vital. Today’s era must not be of war,” it added.


Germany warns against ‘hasty’ conclusion on Poland missile attack

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz has called for a careful probe of a deadly missile attack on a Polish village near the border with war-ravaged Ukraine.

“This destruction must be investigated, the rocket parts must be investigated and then we must wait for the results before they are publicly released,” Scholz told reporters at the G20 summit in Indonesia.

“In such a serious matter, there must not be any hasty conclusions about the course of events before this careful investigation,” he added.


UK PM slams Russia for firing missiles at G20

UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has accused President Vladimir Putin of launching indiscriminate attacks on civilians in Ukraine.

Speaking at a news conference on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Bali, Sunak criticised Russia for firing missiles at Ukraine just as the G20 met to seek a resolution to the war.

Sunak said that allies held an “urgent meeting” at the G20 summit in Bali to “underscore our solidarity with Ukraine and Poland,” after a deadly missile landed in eastern Poland on Tuesday.

“While other world leaders were working together to tackle the greatest challenges our people face, Putin was launching indiscriminate attacks on civilians in Ukraine,” Sunak noted on Wednesday during a press conference at the conclusion of the summit.

“I also spoke to Polish President Duda this morning to offer my wholehearted support and assurance that the UK stands steadfastly behind him and his people,” Sunak continued.

“None of this would be happening if it weren’t for Russia’s invasion of Ukraine,” the PM stressed.


Lithuania calls for more air defences along NATO’s eastern border

NATO should swiftly deploy more air defences on the Polish-Ukrainian border and the rest of the alliance’s eastern flank, Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda has said.

“Lithuania will actively support deploying (NATO) air defences along the Polish-Ukrainian border,” Nauseda told reporters, adding that this also applied to the rest of the eastern flank.

“I hope by next year’s NATO summit in Vilnius we will be able to make progress, as the situation confirms it is the right decision and needs swift implementation”, Nauseda continued.


New air raid alerts across Ukraine day after enormous attacks

New air raid alerts and warning notifications have been sounding across war-scarred Ukraine, according to officials a day after a significant wave of Russia raids hit the country’s energy infrastructure.

The warnings were sounding in all regions of the country after some 10 million Ukrainians were left without electricity when dozens of Russian missiles hit power stations in the biggest aerial attack since the Russian invasion began in February.


Kyiv demands no-fly zone

A no-fly zone needs to be set up over Ukraine, Defence Minister Oleksii Reznikov has said.

“We were asking to close the sky, because [the] sky has no borders. Not for uncontrolled missiles. Not for the threat they carry for our EU & NATO neighbours,” tweeted Defence Minister Oleksii Reznikov.

“This is the reality we’ve been warning about,” he added.


Fuel depot explodes in southern Russia

A fuel depot has exploded in southern Russia near Ukraine following a suspected drone attack, Russian authorities have stated.

There were no casualties reported in the alleged attack which took place some 200km (125 miles) from the Ukrainian border in the province of Oryol.

“Today (Wednesday) at 04:00 (01:00 GMT) a suspected drone blew up a fuel depot in the village of Stalnoi Kon. There were no casualties,” the governor of the Oryol region, Andrei Klytchkov, said in a statement posted on Telegram.


Ukrainian presidential adviser: Russia to blame for any ‘incidents with missiles’

A senior adviser to Ukraine’s president has stated that Russia was to blame for any “incidents with missiles” after its invasion of his country.

“In my opinion, it is necessary to adhere to only one logic. The war was started and is being waged by Russia. Russia massively attacks Ukraine with cruise missiles,” Mykhailo Podolyak said in a written statement after President Joe Biden said a missile that killed two people in Poland was probably not fired from Russia.

“Russia has turned the eastern part of the European continent into an unpredictable battlefield. Intent, means of execution, risks, escalation – all this is only Russia. And there can be no other explanation for any incidents with missiles,” he added.


Attacks in Ukraine during G20 shows Putin’s contempt for international rules: Spain’s PM

The attacks in Ukraine during the G20 summit in Indonesia this week shows Putin’s contempt towards international rules, Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez has stated.

Sanchez also entirely blamed Russia for the crises on the food and energy markets in a news conference following the closure of the summit.


Zelensky tells G20 leaders ‘terrorist state among you’

President Volodymyr Zelensky has told G20 leaders there is a “terrorist state” among them, accusing Russia of a missile strike on Poland.

Speaking by video link, Zelensky called the strike “a true statement brought by Russia for the G20 summit”.

Poland has announced there is no clear evidence on who launched the missile.


Poland’s national security council to meet

Poland’s national security council (BBN) has announced it will meet again at 11:00 GMT amid concerns the Ukraine conflict could spill into neighbouring countries.

“The BBN is currently analysing the arrangements made so far with commanders, service chiefs and allies,” BBN head Jacek Siewiera said in a post on Twitter.

The Polish security council first met on Tuesday night following news of the strike.


Sweden to deliver its biggest military aid package yet to Ukraine

Sweden will deliver new military aid worth 3 billion crowns ($287m) to Ukraine, its biggest package of defence material to date which included an air defence system, Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson has said.

Previous arms contribution by Sweden, which has applied to join NATO along with neighbouring Finland, has ranged from simple equipment such as helmets and body armour to rocket-propelled grenades and missiles.

“It’s a bigger military support package than all eight previous packages combined,” Kristersson told a news conference.

“It’s the single largest we’ve done, and we follow exactly the Ukrainian priority list of what they themselves think they need just now,” Kristersson added.


Ex-Russian president says Polish missile incident shows West moving closer to World War

Former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has stated that an alleged missile strike on Polish territory showed that the West was moving closer to another World War.

“The incident with the Ukrainian-alleged ‘missile strike’ on a Polish farm proves just one thing: waging a hybrid war against Russia, the West moves closer to world war,” Medvedev wrote on Twitter.


Turkish President says he “respects” Russia’s denials over Poland missile incident

Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said he respects Russia’s denial of involvement in a deadly explosion in Poland, but added that the incident should be investigated.

Two people were killed Tuesday when what Polish authorities said was a “Russian-made missile” landed near the village of Przewodow, about 4 miles (6.4 kilometers) west of the Ukrainian border.

Speaking Wednesday at a news conference at the G20 summit in Bali, Erdogan stated he “has to respect the declaration made by Russia” that it was not responsible.

“We take seriously Russia’s statement that “[it] have nothing to do with this,” he continue, adding, “This morning when I met with the German chancellor Mr. [Olaf] Scholz, we have also agreed that further investigation is needed.”

The circumstances surrounding the incident, including who fired the missile and where it was fired from, remain unclear. Both Ukraine and Russia have used Russian-made munitions during the almost nine-month conflict.

Russia’s Defense Ministry said reports of Russian missiles landing in Poland were a “deliberate provocation.” The Russian mission at the United Nations on Wednesday reiterated that stance and claimed — without offering evidence or specifically naming any parties — that the incident was an attempt to bring NATO directly into the war in Ukraine.

Erdogan has played a delicate balancing act since the start of Russia’s invasion. He has refused to sign up to Western sanctions against Russia and sought to play something of a peacemaker role between Kyiv and Moscow. The Turkish leader also helped broker a deal between Russia and Ukraine to allow the resumption of grain shipments from Ukraine’s Black Sea ports.


China urges calm about Poland missile incident

All parties should “stay calm and exercise restraint under current circumstances,” China’s foreign ministry spokeswoman, Mao Ning, has told a regular briefing in remarks about a Russian-made missile that landed in Poland.

Initial findings suggest the missile was fired by Ukrainian forces at an incoming Russian missile, The Associated Press reported, citing unnamed US officials.


Poland blast caused by missile fired by Ukrainian forces at incoming Russian missile: US officials

Initial findings suggest that the missile that hit Poland was fired by Ukrainian forces at an incoming Russian missile, Associated Press reported on Wednesday, citing US officials.

Poland confirmed a “Russian-made missile” fell on a village near the Ukraine border on Tuesday, killing two people. It did not say who fired it or where it was fired from.

Earlier, US President Joe Biden stated it is unlikely a missile that landed in eastern Poland was fired from within Russia after consulting with allies at the G20 Summit in Indonesia.

NATO announced it will hold an emergency meeting Wednesday.


Zelensky: “Terror is not limited to Ukraine”

President Volodymyr Zelensky has continued to blame Russia for the deaths of two people in Poland, using the strike to highlight the potential vulnerability of the rest of the world.

The Ukrainian leader claimed 90 Russian missiles hit his country in the past day.

He described the missile strike in Poland as an ”attack on collective security” and stressed Russia would terrorise anyone within its reach.


Poland blast “would not have happened” without Russian missile attacks on Ukraine: Dutch PM

The deadly explosion of a missile within Poland’s borders on Tuesday “would not have happened without Russia’s horrific missile attacks against Ukraine,” Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said in a tweet on Wednesday.

Rutte tweeted a photo of the G7 heads of state alongside NATO members present at the G20 summit in Bali after an emergency meeting held by the group to discuss the incident.

He wrote that the leaders were “united in our message that we first need to establish the facts and therefore support Poland’s investigation.”

“One thing is clear: this would not have happened without Russia’s horrific missile attacks against Ukraine. We continue to support Ukraine in its defence against the Russian aggression,” he added in a second tweet.

The circumstances surrounding the incident remain unclear — including who fired the missile and where it was fired from. Both Russian and Ukrainian forces have used Russian-made munitions during the conflict, with Ukraine deploying Russian-made missiles as part of their air defense system.


CIA director visits Kyiv amid Russian missile strikes across Ukraine

CIA Director Bill Burns traveled to Kyiv to meet with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and his intelligence counterparts, according to a US official.

Burns, the official said, was safely in the US Embassy during Russian missile strikes across the country, including blasts that rocked the capital.

Burns’ trip to Kyiv came on the heels of a Monday meeting in Ankara, Turkey with his Russian intelligence counterpart, Sergey Naryshkin — and it is the second known time in less than a month that the CIA director has visited Kyiv.

While there, the official noted, Burns “discussed the US warning he delivered to the head of Russia’s SVR not to use nuclear weapons and reinforced the US commitment to provide support to Ukraine in its fight against Russian aggression.”

The flurry of back-channel communications comes less than a week after Russia announced a withdrawal from the key Ukrainian city of Kherson and as a quiet debate has begun in Washington over whether or not to encourage Kyiv to pursue a diplomatic resolution to the conflict. It also comes as the US has grown increasingly concerned that Russia could turn to a nuclear weapon in its struggling war.

Burns and other US officials have said publicly they see no evidence that Moscow is actively preparing to take such a step, but officials familiar with the intelligence warn the risk is perhaps the highest it has been since Russia’s invasion began in February.


Moscow’s UN envoy claims Poland blast an “attempt to provoke a direct military clash between NATO and Russia”

The Russian mission at the United Nations on Wednesday reiterated Moscow’s earlier denials of involvement in a deadly explosion in Poland and claimed — without offering evidence or specifically naming any parties — that the incident was an attempt to bring NATO directly into the war in Ukraine.

Two people were killed Tuesday when what Polish authorities said was a “Russian-made missile” landed near the village of Przewodow, about four miles (6.4 kilometers) west from the Ukrainian border, roughly the same time as Moscow’s forces launched their biggest wave of missile attacks on Ukrainian cities in more than a month.

“The facts indicate that Russia had nothing to do with the missiles [sic] hitting Polish territory,” Russia’s first deputy permanent representative at the UN, Dmitry Polyansky, said on Telegram.

“The incident in Poland is an attempt to provoke a direct military clash between NATO and Russia,” he added.

Polyansky stated the incident would be the focus of attention at the UN Security Council meeting on Ukraine later on Wednesday.

The circumstances surrounding the incident, including who fired the missile and where it was fired from, remain unclear. Both Ukraine and Russia have used Russian-made munitions during the almost nine-month conflict.

Following an emergency meeting on the sidelines of the G20 summit, NATO and G7 leaders said they offered “full support” for Poland and would “remain in close touch” to determine the appropriate next steps. NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg will chair an emergency meeting of alliance ambassadors Wednesday morning in Brussels to discuss the incident.


G7 and NATO condemn “barbaric” attacks in Ukraine and offer support following Poland blast

NATO and G7 leaders released a joint statement following their emergency meeting on the margins of the G20, condemning the “barbaric missile attacks that Russia perpetrated on Ukrainian cities and civilian infrastructure on Tuesday.”

Russia fired “around 100 missiles” at cities across Ukraine on Tuesday, Yurii Ihnat, a spokesperson for the Ukrainian Air Force command, stated previously.

At least a dozen cities and districts were targeted. The wave of strikes appears to be the largest since Oct. 10, when Russia stepped up its campaign to destroy electricity, water and gas infrastructure across Ukraine.

The leaders also offered “full support” for Poland following an explosion in the country’s east and said they would “remain in close touch” to determine the appropriate next steps.

“We all express our condolences to the families of the victims in Poland and Ukraine,” the joint statement said.


Ukrainian president: 10 million people without electricity after wave of Russian missile attacks

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky stated about 10 million Ukrainians are without electricity Tuesday night after waves of Russian missile attacks earlier in the day.

In his daily video address, Zelensky said, “In many cities and regions of our country, there are again emergency power cuts. About ten million Ukrainians are without electricity. Most of all — as of this moment — in Kharkiv, Zhytomyr, Kyiv and Lviv regions.”

Zelensky added that Lviv and some other cities suspended the supply of heating and that there also were issues with the internet and other modes of communication.

Across much of Ukraine, temperatures are marginally above freezing.

“As a result of the strikes, the automation today shut down several nuclear units at two stations — these are calculated consequences, and the enemy knew exactly what he was doing,” Zelensky continued.

Russia fired “around 100 missiles” at cities across Ukraine on Tuesday, according to Yurii Ihnat, spokesperson for the Ukrainian Air Force command.

At least a dozen cities and districts were targeted. The wave of strikes appears to be the largest since Oct. 10, when Russia stepped up its campaign to destroy electricity, water and gas infrastructure across Ukraine.

Herman Halushchenko, Ukrainian Energy Minister, confirmed that most of the targets Tuesday were energy facilities.


UN chief ‘very concerned’ at Poland explosion reports

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is “very concerned” at the reports of the missile explosion in Poland.

Deputy UN Spokesperson Farhan Haq said in a statement that Guterres hopes a thorough investigation will be conducted.

“It is absolutely essential to avoid escalating the war in Ukraine,” Haq added.


NATO secretary general will chair emergency alliance meeting on Wednesday

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg will chair an emergency meeting of alliance ambassadors Wednesday morning in Brussels to discuss “this tragic incident,” NATO spokesperson Oana Lungescu told CNN Tuesday.

World leaders are in the process of arranging meetings to discuss a fatal explosion that happened in eastern Poland, near the border of Ukraine.

Polish media reported projectiles struck a farm in the NATO member’s territory near the border with Ukraine roughly the same time as Russia launched its biggest wave of missile attacks on Ukrainian cities in more than a month.


Biden says it’s “unlikely” missile that fell in Poland was fired from Russia

US President Joe Biden said that preliminary information suggests it is unlikely the missile that caused an explosion in Poland on Tuesday and killed two civilians was fired from within Russia.

Speaking to reporters after meeting with other world leaders in Bali, Indonesia, the president was asked if it was too early to say whether the projectile was fired from Russia.

“There is preliminary information that contests that. I don’t want to say that until we completely investigate it,” Biden responded.

He added that “it’s unlikely in the minds of the trajectory that it was fired from Russia. But we’ll see.”

Earlier, Biden noted that he met with G7 and NATO leaders and they agreed to support Poland’s investigation into the explosion that happened at a village near the Ukraine border.

Earlier, Russia’s Defense Ministry announced reports of Russian missiles landing in Poland were a “deliberate provocation.”


Polish PM: Evidence suggests missile that landed in Przewodów was a “single act”

Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki stated that evidence suggests the missile that landed in Przewodów in eastern Poland was a “single act” and there is no evidence of further missiles.

However, Poland is increasing their military readiness, Morawiecki noted Tuesday during his address in Warsaw following the Council of Ministers meeting.

“We decided to increase the combat readiness of selected units of the Polish armed forces, with particular emphasis on airspace monitoring,” Morawiecki said, explaining that “airspace monitoring is and will be carried out in an enhanced manner together with our allies.”

Morawiecki added that Poland is conducting thorough analysis and consultations with its allies regarding the potential use of Article 4 of the NATO Treaty — with his address echoing the caution and calm urged by other Polish officials.

Earlier, the Polish foreign ministry announced a “Russian-made missile” had landed in the town near the Ukrainian border and killed two people.


Polish president: “We don’t know who fired” missile

Polish President Andrzej Duda said in a Tuesday address that Poland does not know who fired the missile that caused an explosion in Przewodów, a small town close to the border of Ukraine.

The president noted that the missile was “most likely produced in Russia.”

“We are working calmly and in a very calm manner,” Duda stated during an address from the Bureau of National Security in Warsaw, as he urged calm and reassured the country of NATO allies’ support.

Duda added that the US is sending experts to investigate the site as part of a joint operation.

He reiterated that Poland has raised the alert status for its military.


Biden administration asks Congress for additional funding for Ukraine

The Joe Biden administration is calling on the US Congress to include additional funding in the must-pass government package for what it said are three “critical funding needs,” which includes support for Ukraine.

Congress returned for a lame-duck session on Monday and has a short work period in which to pass a critical bill to fund the government by Dec. 16.

Office of Management and Budget Director Shalanda Young sent a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi detailing a $37.7 billion request for Ukraine aid, $10 billion for Covid-19 and an unspecified amount for disaster relief.

The $37.7 billion Ukraine request is spread across four US government departments, according to a fact sheet shared with CNN.

Young wrote to Pelosi that the request would “ensure Ukraine has the funding, weapons, and support it needs to defend itself, and that vulnerable people continue to receive lifesaving aid. The request also addresses the critical global food and energy shortages caused by Russia’s invasion.”

It includes $21.7 for the Department of Defense that will be spent on “equipment for Ukraine, replenishment of Department of Defense stocks, and for continued military, intelligence and other defense support,” $14.5 billion for the State Department for “direct budget support to Ukraine, critical war time investments, security assistance, to strengthen global food security, and for humanitarian assistance,” $626 million for the Department of Energy “for nuclear security support to Ukraine and for modernizing the Strategic Petroleum Reserve,” and $900 million for the Department of Health and Human Services “to provide standard assistance health care and support services to Ukrainian parolees,” per the fact sheet.

A senior administration official told reporters that previous aid for Ukraine “was always intended to last only through the end of this calendar year,” with Young writing to Pelosi that “roughly three-quarters of the funds previously provided by the Congress have been disbursed or committed, with even more expected by the end of the year.”


Baltic states express solidarity with Poland after rockets or missiles reported to land on Polish soil

The Estonian Ministry of Foreign Affairs expressed concern about reports of two missiles or rockets landing in a farm in Poland near the Ukrainian border.

“Latest news from Poland is most concerning. We are consulting closely with Poland and other Allies. Estonia is ready to defend every inch of NATO territory,” the ministry tweeted.

“We’re in full solidarity with our close ally Poland,” it added.

Latvian Defense Minister Artis Pabriks said that “Latvia fully stands with Polish friends.”

Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda stated that the country is “keeping a close contact” with Poland.

“Lithuania stands in strong solidarity with Poland,” he tweeted,” adding that “every inch of NATO territory must be defended!”


Poland considers invoking Article 4 of NATO Treaty to consult member states after explosion

Poland is considering asking its NATO partners for discussions under Article 4 of the NATO Treaty after a missile was reported to have landed on its territory Tuesday, killing two people.

The government has so far only confirmed that there was an explosion.

“It will be verified whether there are grounds to launch the procedures under Article 4 of the North Atlantic Pact,” a government spokesperson said.

Article 4 allows for any member to seek consultations with the rest of the alliance and states.

“The Parties will consult together whenever, in the opinion of any of them, the territorial integrity, political independence or security of any of the Parties is threatened,” the spokesperson added.


Poland’s foreign ministry: “Russian-made missile” fell on the village of Przewodów

A “Russian-made missile” on the Polish village of Przewodów, which is near the border with Ukraine, Poland’s foreign ministry said late Tuesday.

“At 15:40 (local time) in the village of Przewodów in the Hrubieszów poviat in the Lubelskie Voivodship, a Russian-made missile fell, killing two citizens of the Republic of Poland,” Lukasz Jasina, Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson announced in a statement.

The ministry’s statement did not specify the type of missile or where it was fired from.

Poland’s foreign ministry has summoned the Russian ambassador to explain why a Russian-made missile fell on Polish territory killing two people, a ministry spokesperson noted.

“In connection with this event, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Prof. Zbigniew Rau summoned the ambassador of the Russian Federation to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and demanded immediate detailed explanations,” ministry spokeperson Lukasz Jasina stated in a statement.

Earlier, Polish media reported projectiles struck a farm in the NATO member’s territory roughly around the time Russia launched its biggest wave of missile attacks on Ukrainian cities in more than a month.


US sanctions firms involved in production and transfer of Iranian drones to Russia

The US unveiled additional sanctions on entities involved in the production and transfer of Iranian unmanned aerial vehicles (aka drones) to Russia that have been “used in devastating attacks against civilian infrastructure in Ukraine,” the US Treasury announced Tuesday.

The sanctions include several aviation related companies and two people who facilitated the Russian mercenary Wagner Group’s “acquisition of UAVs from Iran.”

The two are Abbas Djuma and Tigran Khristoforovich Srabionov.

“As we have demonstrated repeatedly, the United States is determined to sanction people and companies, no matter where they are located, that support Russia’s unjustified invasion of Ukraine. Today’s action exposes and holds accountable companies and individuals that have enabled Russia’s use of Iranian-built UAVs to brutalize Ukrainian civilians,” Secretary of the Treasury Janet L. Yellen said in a statement.

“This is part of our larger effort to disrupt Russia’s war effort and deny the equipment it needs through sanctions and export controls,” she added.


French president calls for talks at G20 summit amid reports of rockets or missiles landing in Poland

French President Emmanuel Macron has called for talks at the G20 summit following reports of rockets or missiles landing in Poland, according to an Elysee Palace spokesperson on Tuesday.

“The president has contacted the Polish leadership and is being kept informed of the evolving situation”, the spokesperson said.

A French defense source told CNN that France was being “extremely cautious” and that officials would not comment until they were able to “analyse all the available information”.

“We are in close contact with the Polish authorities,” the defense source added.

Meanwhile, Italian Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani said in a Tuesday tweet that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, also called the Farnesina, is closely following the developments in Poland and is in close contact with NATO allies.

“The Farnesina is following the developments in Poland with the utmost attention, in constant contact with Defense, European countries, and NATO allies,” Tajani stated, adding, “My condolences to the families of the victims. I am close to the Polish people.”


UK foreign secretary says missile attacks on Ukraine shows “Putin’s weakness”

The missile attacks targeting Ukrainian cities “shows only Vladimir Putin’s weakness,” British Foreign Secretary James Cleverly stated on Tuesday during the G20 summit in Bali, Indonesia.

“The callous targeting of Ukrainian cities with more sickening missile attacks today shows only Putin’s weakness,” Cleverly said in a tweet.

“Putin is losing on the battlefield and – as we saw today at the G20 – diplomatically too,” he added.


“These attacks will not break Ukraine’s will”: Blinken

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken condemned Russia’s missile attacks across Ukraine Tuesday.

In a tweet, Blinken said that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky “again today by making clear he is prepared for diplomacy toward a just end to the war Russia started.”

Zelesnky earlier Tuesday outlined a 10-point peace plan to end Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in a video speech to G20 leaders in Bali, Indonesia.

“Russia’s response was another wave of missiles,” Blinken stated, adding, “These attacks will not break Ukraine’s will—we will be with Ukraine for as long as it takes.”

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