Ukraine and Russia: What you need to know right now


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Moscow and Kyiv traded fresh accusations of shelling around the Russian-occupied Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant in Ukraine, which has been a focus of international concern that fighting in the area could trigger a disaster.

ZAPORIZHZHIA

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* The situation at the Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant in Ukraine remains “very risky” after two of its six reactors were reconnected to the grid, President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said on Friday, following shelling that caused Europe’s largest nuclear power plant to be disconnected for the first time.

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* Russia and Ukraine have traded blame for shelling near the plant, which on Thursday sparked fires in the ash pits of a nearby coal power station that disconnected the plant from the power grid.

FIGHTING

* Russia has probably stepped up attacks along the Donetsk sector of Ukraine’s eastern region of Donbas over the last five days in a move that could be aimed at sucking in Ukrainian troops and foiling a counterattack, Britain’s defense ministry said.

* Ukraine’s military command said its forces had beaten back assaults by Russian forces in the direction of Soledar, Zaitseve and Mayorsk in the Donetsk region.

* Ukraine’s southern military command said a Ukrainian air strike destroyed a Russian air defense system in the Kherson region, while the Antonivskyi and Daryivskiy bridges remained unusable by heavy vehicles after previous strikes.

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* The Russian defense ministry, in its daily briefing, said it had destroyed a large ammunition depot in Ukraine’s Dnipropetrovsk region that had contained U.S.-made HIMARS rocket systems and shells for M777 Howitzers.

* The Russian Air Force shot down a MiG-29 aircraft in the eastern Donetsk region, the ministry said, and destroyed another six missile and artillery weapons depots in the Donetsk, Mykolaiv and Kherson regions.

Reuters could not verify the battlefield reports.

DIPLOMACY, WEAPONS

* Britain’s defense ministry said it was giving six underwater drones to Ukraine to help clear its coastline of mines and make grain shipments safer. Britain will also train dozens of Ukrainian Navy personnel to use the drones, the ministry said in a statement.

* Two South Korean companies have signed a $5.76 billion contract with Poland to export tanks and howitzers, Seoul’s arms procurement agency said, after Warsaw agreed to ramp up arms imports amid tensions with Russia.

* The United States and India had constructive talks on a proposal to cap prices of Russian oil, U.S. Deputy Treasury Secretary Wally Adeyemo said on Friday, as Washington seeks global support for a proposal to cut Russian revenue.

(Compiled by William Mallard and Frances Kerry)



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