According to official reports, the Ukrainian authorities are finding increasing evidence of atrocities committed by the former Russian occupiers in the liberated areas around Cherson, Kharkiv and Donetsk.
About 90 percent of the cases involved civilians. To fend off aggressor Russia, Britain promised the Ukrainian government additional military aid, for which President Volodymyr Zelensky thanked a surprise guest from London.
In Ukraine, meanwhile, technicians are working feverishly to repair the damage caused by Russian attacks and restore electricity to the country. The resumption of rail traffic between Kyiv and the liberated city of Cherson was celebrated as a sign of the long-awaited normalization of life in the previously occupied areas: a train from the capital arrived there for the first time in eight months. Heavy fighting between Russian and Ukrainian troops continued in eastern Ukraine.
“We found places where peaceful civilians were killed in almost every village in the Kharkiv region.”said Attorney General Kostin on television. Researchers are now making similar discoveries in the recently liberated Cherson region of southern Ukraine. Some 20 locations were also discovered where civilians were interrogated and held captive. “And every day we get new information,” Kostin said. Such statements by the warring parties can hardly be independently verified.
His guest promised Ukraine more aid: it should amount to the equivalent of almost 57.5 million euros, include 125 anti-aircraft guns and anti-drone technology and help protect the population and infrastructure. At the beginning of November, the British Ministry of Defense had already promised the delivery of 1,000 anti-aircraft missiles.
Sunak and Zelensky posed in Kyiv under a light snowfall in front of captured Russian tanks. “Thank you, Rishi, Prime Minister, for his willingness to further defend freedom with us,” Zelensky said in his daily video address at night.
Despite continued Russian air and missile attacks on Ukraine’s energy infrastructure, restoring the country’s energy supply is a top priority, Zelensky said. “We are working throughout the country to stabilize the situation,” he said Saturday night. “Most of the problems with electricity are in Kyiv and its surroundings, Odessa and its surroundings, Kharkiv and its surroundings.” Everything is done “so that people can lead a normal life.”
Earlier this week, Russia triggered nationwide power outages in Ukraine with massive attacks on energy infrastructure. At times, around ten million people were left without electricity. According to Zelenski, about 50 percent of the energy infrastructure has been destroyed or damaged. Moscow wants to put more pressure on its neighbors with these attacks before the onset of winter.
According to a US media report, Russia has reached an agreement with Iran to produce Iranian attack drones for the war against Ukraine in their own country. Work is currently underway to get production up and running in a few months, the Washington Post wrote, citing intelligence. The deal was negotiated in Iran in early November and the Russian military uses the drones, among other things, for attacks on Ukraine’s energy infrastructure.
A train from Kyiv arrived in the recently liberated city of Cherson for the first time in eight months on Saturday. 200 passengers got tickets under the slogan “Towards victory”, Ukrainian media reported.
Hundreds of spectators with Ukrainian national flags cheered the arrival of the special train at the station.
The railway connection between Kyiv and Cherson was interrupted immediately after the start of the war on February 24 as a result of the invasion of Russian soldiers. The Dnipro region was recently liberated after the Ukrainian army forced the Russian occupiers to retreat to the other side of the river.
In Kherson, an action to voluntarily resettle civilians in safe areas in the west of the country began on Saturday. The helpers are ready to take whoever wants them to other parts of the country where the government guarantees accommodation and supplies, Ukrajinska Pravda reported, citing authorities.
According to the General Staff of Ukraine, the Russian armed forces are increasing their troop presence in the Lugansk region. To accommodate the numerous soldiers, part of the civilian population will be forcibly relocated, the general staff in Kyiv said on Saturday. The eastern Ukrainian region of Lugansk borders Russia.
Meanwhile, Russian and Ukrainian troops continued to fight at a variety of hotspots. According to the General Staff, tanks, cannon and rocket artillery and grenade launchers were used. According to the Ukrainian army, up to 60 Russian soldiers were killed or wounded in the Mihajlovka region in the Zaporizhia region alone. The Russian military spoke of Ukrainian rocket attacks on the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant. This information could not be independently verified.
That will be important on Sunday.
In Poland, the second victim of the recent rocket attack will be buried with a state funeral at the site of a granary in the border area with Ukraine on Sunday. A rocket struck the town of Przewodow, just six kilometers from the border, on Tuesday, killing the 62-year-old tractor driver and the warehouse manager. The 60-year-old man was buried on Saturday with a state funeral closed to the public in Przewodow.
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