Saturday, October 28, 2023

Russia-Ukraine War: Key Events on Day 426


As of Tuesday, April 25, 2023, the diplomatic situation between Russia and Ukraine remains tense. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has condemned Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, stating that it is causing “massive suffering and devastation.” This statement was made during a UN Security Council meeting chaired by Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. However, Ukraine’s allies have criticized the meeting as a cynical exercise, as it was convened by Russia to discuss protecting the UN Charter, which Moscow is accused of breaching with its full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.

During the meeting, Washington’s UN ambassador made a direct plea to Lavrov for the release of detained US journalist Evan Gershkovich and former US marine Paul Whelan. Meanwhile, China’s ambassador to France attempted to defuse anger in Europe after questioning the sovereignty of countries that were once part of the Soviet Union.

On a trip to Ukraine, Estonian Prime Minister Kaja Kallas expressed support for Kyiv’s calls to join NATO “as soon as conditions allow,” as well as its membership in the EU. However, a Moscow court rejected an appeal from the woman accused of killing a pro-Kremlin war blogger in a St Petersburg café.

In terms of fighting, Russia’s Black Sea Fleet repelled a drone attack on the Crimean port of Sevastopol in the early hours of Monday, according to the Moscow-installed governor of the city. Russia’s defense ministry accused Ukraine of attempting to attack its ships in the Black Sea, which it said was threatening prospects for a renewed deal on grain exports. Yevgeny Prigozhin, the founder of the Wagner Group of mercenaries, said Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenksyy would start a counteroffensive if and when Bakhmut falls.

The Institute for the Study of War, a Washington-based think tank, reported that Ukrainian military forces had established positions on the eastern side of the Dnieper River, raising speculations of a counterattack. Russia pounded the southern Ukrainian cities of Kherson and Beryslav, destroying about 30 buildings and injuring civilians. Moscow also claimed to have found a “Ukrainian” drone outside the capital, which was discovered by a local resident in a forest.

In terms of weaponry, EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell expressed confidence that the bloc will soon finalize a plan to buy ammunition for Ukraine. This move could potentially escalate tensions between Russia and the West, as it would provide Ukraine with additional military support.

Overall, the situation between Russia and Ukraine remains volatile, with both sides engaging in military posturing and diplomatic maneuvering. The international community continues to monitor the situation closely, with many hoping for a peaceful resolution to the conflict.

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