Russia Ukraine war live: Putin reveals when nuclear weapons will be deployed to Belarus amid counteroffensive

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Ukraine: Soviet-era dam destroyed near Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant

Vladimir Putin has announced Russia will start deploying tactical nuclear weapons to Belarus next month – Moscow’s first move of such bombs outside Russia since the fall of the Soviet Union.

The Russian president said the weapons would be deployed after special storage facilities are ready in just under a month’s time.

It comes after he, last month, announced he wanted to deploy tactical nuclear weapons to Belarus, in an apparent warning to Nato over its support for Ukraine.

“Everything is going according to plan,” Mr Putin told his ally and Belarusian president Alexander Lukashenko.

“Preparation of the relevant facilities ends on July 7-8, and we will immediately begin activities related to the deployment of appropriate types of weapons on your territory,” he said, according to a Kremlin transcript of his remarks.

Earlier, Ukraine‘s domestic security service said it had intercepted a telephone call proving a Russian “sabotage group” blew up the Kakhovka hydroelectric station and dam in southern Ukraine. The destruction of the facility on Tuesday unleashed mass flooding, forcing thousands of residents to flee and wreaking environmental havoc.

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Russian strike damages infrastructure at Ukrainian military airfield – governor

Russia fired missiles and attack drones at the central Ukrainian region of Poltava overnight, inflicting “some damage of infrastructure and equipment” at the Myrhorod military airfield, the regional governor said on Saturday.

The attack that used ballistic and cruise missiles also damaged eight private residential homes and several vehicles, governor Dmytro Lunin said on Telegram messenger. No casualties were reported.

Matt Mathers10 June 2023 08:25

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Three killed in Russian drone attack on Odesa overnight – Ukraine

Three civilians were killed during a Russian drone attack on the Black Sea city of Odesa in the early hours of Saturday after drone debris fell on an apartment block starting a fire, the Ukrainian military said.

Air defences in Odesa region shot down eight “Shahed” drones and two missiles in the latest in a spate of overnight air strikes on Ukrainian cities in recent weeks, a spokesperson for the southern military command said.

“As a result of the air fight, debris from one of the drones fell onto a high-rise apartment, causing a fire,” the military official, Natalia Humeniuk, said in a statement.

The emergency services said 27 people, including three children, were wounded, but that the fire had been rapidly put out and 12 people were rescued from the building.

Matt Mathers10 June 2023 07:29

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Three people die during a Russian drone attack on Odesa oblast

Three people died and at least ten more were injured during a Russian drone attack on Odesa Oblast today, local reports said.

According to Ukraine’s southern command, Russian forces attacked the region using Iranian-made drones. Officials, however, claimed that all the drones were destroyed by Ukrainian forces.

A high-rise residential building was damaged by the falling debris. The resulting fire has since been extinguished, officials said.

The blast wave also damaged the neighbouring residential buildings.

Maroosha Muzaffar10 June 2023 07:00

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Five dead and 13 missing due to floods after Kakhovka dam destruction, Ukrainian authorities claim

At least five people in Kherson and Mykolaiv oblasts were killed, and 13 more were missing yesterday, according to Ukrainian officials.

Ukraine’s interior ministry reported that dozens of settlements on both banks of the Dnipro River are flooded.

The ministry said, four of the five victims died in southern Kherson Oblast, where 48 settlements have been flooded, including 34 on the Ukraine-controlled west bank of the Dnipro River and 14 on the Russian-occupied east bank, the Kyiv Independent reported.

Mykolaiv Oblast police chief reported on 8 June that another victim died in the neighbouring Mykolaiv Oblast, where 23 settlements have been flooded.

Maroosha Muzaffar10 June 2023 06:30

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Over 130 explosions recorded across Sumy Oblast, Ukraine authorities claim

Russian forces attacked seven communities in Sumy Oblast yesterday, the military administration of the region stated on Telegram.

According to officials, Russian forces targeted the communities of Velyka Pysarivka, Bilopillia, Krasnopillia, Myropillia, Shalyhyne, Yunakivka, and Novoslobidske, according to Kyiv Independent.

A total of 133 explosions were recorded across the seven communities.

One local was reportedly injured in the Yunakivka community. The attacks also damaged a residential building, an outbuilding, and a garage in the same community.

Maroosha Muzaffar10 June 2023 06:00

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Russian ambassador to the US says Washington not looking for ‘diplomatic settlement of the conflict’

Russian ambassador to the United States, Anatoly Antonov stated yesterday that the US does not intend to look for ways to a diplomatic settlement of the conflict in Ukraine, the TASS news agency reported.

Speaking about the next US package of military assistance to the Kyiv authorities, he said: “The United States continues to pump up its wards with new batches of deadly weapons. The appropriations for these purposes of such impressive financial resources indicate one thing: Washington does not intend to look for ways to a diplomatic settlement of the conflict.”

He added that Washington “did nothing to bring the regime of [Volodymyr] Zelensky to the negotiating table”.

He continued: “On the contrary, they are methodically pushing their puppets to continue sacrificing human lives in the name of the extravagant goal of inflicting a strategic defeat on Russia. It is impossible for Washington to retreat from this task. At stake is the reputation of the country’s leadership, which has chosen the path of war, and not diplomatic solutions.”

Maroosha Muzaffar10 June 2023 05:30

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Ukraine faces ‘hugely worse’ humanitarian situation after dam rupture, UN aid chief says

The humanitarian situation in Ukraine is “hugely worse” than before the Kakhovka dam collapsed, the UN’s top aid official warned yesterday.

Undersecretary-General Martin Griffiths said an “extraordinary” 700,000 people are in need of drinking water and warned that the ravages of flooding in one of the world’s most important breadbaskets will almost inevitably lead to lower grain exports, higher food prices around the world, and less to eat for millions in need.

“This is a viral problem,” he said in an interview with Associated Press. “But the truth is this is only the beginning of seeing the consequences of this act.”

Maroosha Muzaffar10 June 2023 05:00

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US ambassador to UN ‘gravely concerned’ by growing military cooperation between Russia and Iran

Linda Thomas-Greenfield, the US ambassador to the United Nations says she is “gravely concerned by the growing military cooperation between Russia and Iran” and called for an investigation into Iran’s transfer of attack drones to Russia.

“I am gravely concerned by the growing military cooperation between Russia and Iran which continues to enable Russia’s prosecution of its brutal war against Ukraine,” Ms Thomas-Greenfield said.

She says Russia and Iran are both violating UN Security Council Resolution.

She cited information released by the US earlier Friday which documented how Iran “has provided Russia with hundreds of one-way attack UAVs [unmanned aerial vehicles], as well as UAV production-related equipment.” The ambassador said Russia has been using these UAVs in recent weeks to unleash missile strikes on Kyiv and “terrorize Ukrainian civilians.”

The White House claimed yesterday that Russia has received hundreds of drones from Iran to attack Ukraine.

Citing newly declassified information, the White House said the drones or Uncrewed Aerial Vehicles [UAVs], were built in Iran, shipped across the Caspian Sea and then used by Russian forces against Ukraine.

Maroosha Muzaffar10 June 2023 04:30

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Russia has received hundreds of Iranian drones to attack Ukraine, White House says

The White House claimed yesterday that Russia has received hundreds of drones from Iran to attack Ukraine.

Citing newly declassified information, the White House said the drones or Uncrewed Aerial Vehicles [UAVs], were built in Iran, shipped across the Caspian Sea and then used by Russian forces against Ukraine.

“Russia has been using Iranian UAVs in recent weeks to strike Kyiv and terrorise the Ukrainian population, and the Russia-Iran military partnership appears to be deepening,” White House spokesman John Kirby said in a statement.

“We are also concerned that Russia is working with Iran to produce Iranian UAVs from inside Russia.”

Mr Kirby also said that the US had information that Russia was receiving materials from Iran required to build a drone manufacturing plant that could be fully operational early next year.

“We are releasing satellite imagery of the planned location of this UAV manufacturing plant in Russia’s Alabuga Special Economic Zone.”

Maroosha Muzaffar10 June 2023 03:54

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Russia claims it blew up advanced Ukrainian tank, but video shows its helicopter attacked a tractor

A grainy black-and-white gunsight video Russia released this week to bolster a claim its military blew up some of Ukraine’s most fearsome tanks actually documented the destruction of a tractor, according to a visual analysis by The Associated Press.

The Russian Embassy in Washington announced Monday on Twitter its forces had “annihilated” eight German-made Leopard tanks, among the most advanced and powerful weapons NATO countries have provided to Ukraine. The Russian Ministry of Defense then posted a video Tuesday on the social media network Telegram with text saying it showed “footage of the destruction of foreign armoured vehicles, including Leopard tanks.”

Michael Biesecker has the full story:

Eleanor Noyce10 June 2023 03:00

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