Russia-Ukraine war: what we know on day 114 of the invasion
June 17, 2022
Ukraine’s navy has claimed it has struck the Russian rescue tug Spasatel Vasily Bekh, which it says was in the process of the “transportation of ammunition, weapons and personnel of the Black Sea Fleet to Snake Island”.
Ukraine’s armed forces strategic communications directorate said the tug boat was hit with two Harpoon missiles. If so, that would mark the first time Ukraine has said it hit a Russian vessel with this type of western-supplied anti-ship rockets.
At least two people have been killed and 20 injured in a Russian missile attack on Mykolaiv in southern Ukraine, according to governor Vitaliy Kim.
The head of the UK’s armed forces has said Russia has already “strategically lost” the war in Ukraine and is now a “more diminished power”.
Admiral Sir Tony Radakin said Russia was suffering heavy losses, running out of troops and advanced missiles and would never be able to take over all of Ukraine.
The Russian foreign minister, Sergei Lavrov, said Russia is “not ashamed of showing who we are” in an interview with the BBC. “We didn’t invade Ukraine, we declared a special military operation because we had absolutely no other way of explaining to the west that dragging Ukraine into Nato was a criminal act,” he said.
France’s president, Emmanuel Macron, has said he thinks it is unlikely a deal can be done with his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, about exporting grain from Ukraine’s Odesa port.
Nato said on Thursday it is committed to providing equipment to maintain Ukraine’s right to self-defence, and will be making more troop deployments on its eastern flank.
Nato’s secretary general, Jens Stoltenberg, condemned “a relentless war of attrition against Ukraine” being waged by Russia, and said Nato continued to offer “unprecedented support so it can defend itself against Moscow’s aggression”.
The Chinese president, Xi Jinping, will host a virtual summit with top leaders from Russia, India, Brazil and South Africa next week, marking the first such meeting since the Ukraine crisis unfolded.
Australia’s new prime minister, Anthony Albanese, has said he will consider whether to accept president Volodymyr Zelenskiy’s invitation to visit Ukraine during an upcoming European trip. Albanese said he only became aware of the invitation to visit Ukraine when he read a newspaper report.
Zelenskiy appeared as a hologram while referencing Star Wars in an attempt to secure more aid from big tech firms. He told a crowd of hundreds at the VivaTech trade show in Paris on Thursday that Ukraine was offering technology firms a unique chance to rebuild the country as a fully digital democracy.
A Russian spy tried and failed to secure an internship at the international criminal court using the false identity of a Brazilian citizen that he had built up for as long as a decade, according to Dutch intelligence.
Sergey Vladimirovich Cherkasov, 36, accused of being an agent of Russia’s GRU military intelligence, was detained when he arrived and sent back to Brazil the following day.
The UK announced Thursday a fresh wave of sanctions against Russia aimed at people involved with the “barbaric treatment of children in Ukraine”. Those targeted by sanctions include the Russian children’s rights commissioner, Maria Lvova-Belova, military commanders, Vladimir Mikhailovich and Patriarch Kirill, the head of the Russian Orthodox church.
The European Commission will meet today to give its fast-tracked opinion on Ukraine’s bid for EU candidacy, a step closer to membership for the country a day after the bloc’s most powerful leaders visited Kyiv in a show of support. Never before has an opinion been given so quickly on EU candidacy, which must be approved by all 27 member states.
It is now “impossible and physically dangerous” for civilians to leave the Azot chemical plant in Sievierodonetsk due to “constant shelling and fighting”, according to Luhansk’s governor, Serhai Haidai.
He said: “There are 568 people in the shelter, including 38 children. Exiting the plant is possible only with a complete ceasefire.” A pro-Russian separatist leader claimed Russian-backed forces would reopen a humanitarian corridor for civilians to leave the plant, the Interfax news agency reported.
Credit: Thr Guardian
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