Ukraine and Russia: What you need to know right now


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Russian President Vladimir Putin on Sunday accused Ukraine of blasting a key bridge linking Russia and Crimea, describing it as “terrorism,” while Ukrainian officials reported a Russian missile struck an apartment block and other residential buildings in Zaporizhzhia, killing at least 13 people and wounding 89 others.


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* Russian divers were to examine the damage from a powerful blast on a road-and-rail bridge to Crimea that is an imposing symbol of Moscow’s annexation of the peninsula and a key supply route to its forces battling in southern Ukraine.

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* Putin met with Alexander Bastrykin, the head of Russia’s Investigative Committee, who presented findings of an inquiry into what he said was Saturday’s explosion of a vehicle and subsequent fire on the bridge.

* Crimea’s Russian governor, Sergei Aksyonov wrote in Telegram: “Only passenger cars will use the road section of the Crimean bridge until a special order is issued. The railway line will operate as normal. Buses of all types and heavy vehicles will be transported by ferry.”

* Ukraine has recaptured over 1,170 square kilometers (450 square miles) of land in its southern Kherson region since launching the start of its counter-assault against Russia in late August, a Ukrainian military spokesperson said.

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* The external power supply to the Russian-occupied Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant was restored on Sunday, Ukraine’s state nuclear company Energoatom and the U.N.’s nuclear watchdog said.

* Ukrainian troops are involved in very tough fighting near the strategically important eastern town of Bakhmut, which Russia is trying to take, President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said on Saturday.

* Russia’s Defence Ministry named Air Force General Sergei Surovikin on Saturday as the overall commander of Russian forces fighting in Ukraine, Moscow’s third senior military appointment in a week.


* The White House said it would continue to arm Ukraine but declined direct comment on the explosion that damaged Russia’s road-and-rail bridge to Crimea.

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* Ukraine’s economy shrank an estimated 30% in the first three quarters of 2022 from the same period in 2021, with bad harvest weather compounding the impact of the war, the economy ministry said.

* The Kremlin praised OPEC+ for agreeing production cuts that had successfully countered the “mayhem” sown by the United States in global energy markets.

* The Sakhalin 1 oil and gas project in Russia is very important for Japan to ensure its diversified crude oil procurement, Trade Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura said on Sunday after Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree establishing a new operator for the project in Russia’s Far East.

* To reverse the economic shock caused by the war, Ukraine’s government is pinning its hopes on the entrepreneurial resolve of small businesses, along with the return of millions of refugees – and large-scale international financial aid. (Compiled by William Mallard and Frances Kerry;)



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