A drone strike on the headquarters of Russia’s Black Sea Fleet has injured six people and halted a Naval Day festival in the Crimean peninsula of Sevastopol, the mayor said on Sunday.
“There were no deaths, six people were injured, two in moderate condition, the rest are in stable condition,” Mayor Mikhail Razvozhaev said on social media.
The Black Sea Fleet press service said the drone appeared to be homemade and described the explosive as “low-power”.
Sevastopol is about 160 kilometers south of mainland Ukraine and has been under Russian control since 2014, when the Kremlin illegally annexed Crimea. Russian forces also control much of the mainland coastal area along the Black Sea. There was no direct information about where the drone came from.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has vowed to take back Crimea from Russia. His top assistant said the drone strike was a reflection of Russia’s weak air defenses.
“Have the occupiers admitted the helplessness of their air defense system? Or their helplessness in front of the Crimean partisans?” Oleksiy Arestovich said on Telegram.
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►Russian missiles hit a school in Kharkov and a bus station in Sloviansk, among others. In southern Ukraine, one person has been killed and six injured in shelling in a residential area in Mykolaiv, local officials said.
►Russia’s state-owned natural gas company said it has halted deliveries to Latvia due to contract violations. Gas giant Gazprom said supplies were halted because Latvia violated “conditions for gas extraction”. The statement probably referred to a refusal to meet Russian demand for gas payments in rubles.
Wealthy businessman killed in what Ukrainian official calls targeted attack
One of Ukraine’s richest men and his wife were killed at their home in Mykolaiv by a Russian rocket attack that was carefully targeted, a Ukrainian official said.
Oleksiy Vadatursky, who ran a grain production and export company and once received the “Hero of Ukraine” award for his contributions to the country, died along with his wife, Raisa, in an early attack on Sunday morning, regional governor said. Vitaliy Kim. .
Their assassination comes just as Ukraine is about to resume grain exports under a deal with Russia brokered by the United Nations and Turkey.
The southern port city of Mykolaiv was heavily bombed overnight, but presidential adviser Mykhailo Podolyak said Vadatursky, 74, was specifically targeted. Vadatursky’s agribusiness, Nibulon, includes a fleet of ships for shipping grain abroad.
It “was not an accident, but a well-thought-out and organized premeditated murder,” Podolyak said. “Vadatursky was one of the largest farmers in the country, a key figure in the region and a major employer. That the exact impact of a rocket took place not only in a house, but in a specific wing, the bedroom, leaves no doubt. existence targeting and adapting the attack.”
Zelenskyy declares mandatory evacuation from Donetsk . region
As Russian troops and separatists attempt to take over the Donetsk region completely, Ukrainian officials are calling for the evacuation of Ukrainian-occupied parts of the province. President Volodymyr Zelenskyy announced a mandatory evacuation and urged people to leave the region and convince their loved ones to go, according to CNN and Reuters.
“The sooner it is finished, the more people are leaving the Donetsk region now, the fewer people the Russian army will have time to kill,” he said in his overnight video address.
Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk warned the region will face serious heating problems this winter due to the destruction of gas pipelines and said people should evacuate before the cold sets in.
New Russian maritime policy goals US, NATO
Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a Maritime Doctrine on Sunday alleging that US efforts to dominate the world’s oceans and increasing NATO activity pose major security threats to Russia. The new policy, posted on the Kremlin’s legal information web portal, cites the US’s global influence on issues related to the use of transportation routes and energy resources.
The policy calls for the development of Russia’s shipbuilding industry in the Far East, in particular to build “large tonnage ships” for use in the Arctic and advanced aircraft carriers for the navy.
Strategic objectives of the policy include increasing the combat capabilities of the Russian Navy to protect Russia’s national security and interests.
Low expectations for UN conference on nuclear non-proliferation
Nuclear non-proliferation agreements are difficult under the best of circumstances. The current circumstances, with Russia waging war in Ukraine and sometimes reviving fears of nuclear confrontation, are far from ideal.
That’s what representatives from more than 110 countries face as they kick off Monday at a major UN conference on the landmark Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. The meeting was scheduled to take place in 2020, the 50th anniversary of the treaty, but was postponed due to the pandemic.
The four-week meeting aims to reach a consensus on the next steps, but expectations for a substantial – if any – agreement are low.
“It’s a very, very difficult moment,” said Beatrice Fihn, the executive director of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons, which won the Nobel Peace Prize, referring to Russian aggression and the chatter of nuclear sabers. “How governments respond to the situation will shape future nuclear policy.”
Ukraine sees some success in divesting Russian troops
Ukrainian forces are likely to have “successfully repulsed small-scale Russian attacks” near Donetsk in the Donbas region, the British Defense Ministry said. In Kherson, the ministry said, Russian troops have built pontoon bridges to “compensate for nearby bridges having been damaged in recent strikes”.
A senior US defense official also said this weekend that Ukrainians have made progress in the Kherson region. “Not big, huge claims, but they are certainly claims against the Russians,” the official told reporters. A senior military official at the briefing added that Russian forces appear “ill-prepared” for Ukraine’s counter-offensive there.
Ukraine condemns Russia for latest act of ‘terrorism’
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy called for Russia’s recognition as a state sponsor of terrorism, citing the “deliberate mass killing” of Ukrainian prisoners of war via shelling in the separatist eastern region of Donetsk.
Dozens of Ukrainians held as prisoners of war were reportedly killed in a rocket attack on Friday — an attack for which Russia and Ukraine blame each other. Separatist authorities and Russian officials said at least 53 people were killed and 75 injured in Olenivka, a settlement controlled by the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic. The prisoners were captured after Mariupol fell in May.
“Russia has proven with numerous terrorist attacks that it is the single largest source of terrorism in the world today,” Zelenskyy said.
Contributions: The Associated Press