Latest in Ukraine: Russian strikes leave Kharkiv without power after Putin suffers military setback

Russia ‘lost nothing’ from Ukraine conflict, Putin says

Russian strikes have left Kharkiv without electricity and water for the second time in as many days, the mayor of Ukraine’s second-largest city has said.

The Kremlin’s attacks on civilian infrastructure come in response to deadly defeats it suffered in the northeast region of Kharkiv, where Ukrainian troops recaptured thousands of square kilometers of territory in just five days.

Moscow’s first strike against Ukraine’s power grid came on Sunday, leading Kyiv to accuse Moscow of “cowardly” targeting of state resources.

“Last night’s situation is repeating itself. Due to the (Russian) strikes, the electricity and water supply was interrupted,” Kharkiv Mayor Ihor Terekhov said on Monday.

Ukrainian authorities have hailed the recent successes of their troops, with presidential adviser Alexander Rodnyansky saying his country was breaking free, something many of its allies “recently thought was impossible”.

However, Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov warned his country to expect Russian counterattacks.

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Good morning! Welcome to our coverage of the war in Ukraine on Monday, September 12.

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Russian strikes blow up Ukrainian electricity, water network in northeast – officials

The Russian military attacked civilian infrastructure in the beleaguered country’s northeastern region after Ukrainian troops launched a rapid offensive over the weekend, leading to power and water outages in Kharkiv, claims have been made. officials in Kyiv.

Volodymyr Zelensky confirmed the attack on the power grid late on Sunday and said: “Full blackout in Kharkiv and Donetsk regions, partial in Zaporizhzhia, Dnipropetrovsk and Sumy regions.”

He said “Russian terrorists remain terrorists”, saying there was no military purpose in the attacks on the facilities and “rather the aim was to deprive people of light and heat”.

His tweet was followed by a hashtag #RussiaIsATerroristState.

Bridget Brink, the US ambassador to Ukraine, also condemned the alleged Russian strikes.

“Russia’s apparent response to Ukraine’s liberation of towns and villages in the east: sending missiles in an attempt to destroy critical civilian infrastructure,” Ms Brink tweeted.

The Kremlin has dismissed Kyiv’s claims and repeated its assertion that it does not target civilian infrastructure in Ukraine.

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Ukraine regains more than 3,000 km2 of territory in a massive advance

Ukrainian soldiers scored their biggest victory in a counter-offensive over the weekend as Russian soldiers were driven from the town of Izium in the Kharkiv region – a territory used as a logistics hub by the Russian troops.

Ukraine’s offensive in the northeast is a potential breakthrough in the six-month-long war, Volodymyr Zelensky said, adding that winter could see further territorial gains if Kyiv receives stronger weapons from its forces. international allies.

Russian soldiers left their ammunition and equipment behind as they fled the area, officials said.

Ukraine’s armed forces regained control of more than 3,000 square kilometers (1,158 square miles) in less than two weeks, starting this month, Ukrainian army chief Valeriy Zaluzhnyi said.

Ukrainian soldiers and local officials were greeted with hugs and handshakes by villagers in Kozacha, north of Kharkiv, near the Russian border, Kyiv said.

It represents Moscow’s worst strategic defeat since they were driven from the outskirts of the capital Kyiv in March.

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Ukraine shuts down last operating reactor at Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant to avert disaster

Ukrainian authorities on Sunday ordered the shutdown of the last operating reactor of Europe’s largest nuclear power plant in a bid to avert disaster as the Zaporizhzhia region continued to face heavy fighting.

Continued shelling around the Russian-owned Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant operated by Ukrainian personnel could pose a risk of radiation release, Ukrainian inspectors and officials have warned.

A backup power line to the plant has been restored, the International Atomic Energy Agency said, adding that this will provide the external power it needed to carry out the shutdown while protecting against the risk of collapse.

Emmanuel Macron escalated Europe’s concerns around the nuclear site with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin and said the forced control of the plant by Moscow troops is the reason its security has been compromised.

In return, Mr Putin blamed Ukrainian fighters, according to a Kremlin statement.

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Ukraine took over territory twice the size of Greater London – British MoD

Ukrainian soldiers have since Wednesday taken over territory in the war-affected country at least twice the size of Greater London and in the face of the Ukrainian counterattack, Russia is likely to have withdrawn its soldiers from Kharkiv, the ministry said on Monday. British Defence.

“Faced with the Ukrainian advances, Russia probably ordered the withdrawal of its troops from the whole of occupied Kharkiv Oblast west of the Oskil River,” the ministry said in its latest intelligence update. war.

He added: “Isolated pockets of resistance remain in this area, but since Wednesday Ukraine has taken over territory at least twice the size of Greater London.”

Russia is likely struggling to get sufficient supplies across the Dnipro River to the frontline in the south near Kherson, the ministry added.

Moreover, the Russian project for an improvised pontoon bridge launched more than two weeks ago remains unfinished, according to the ministry.

“Ukrainian long-range artillery now hits Dnipro crossings so frequently that Russia cannot carry out repairs to damaged road bridges,” the ministry said.

Russia’s overall operational design is suffering from the rapid successes of the Ukrainian war, the British Ministry of Defense has claimed.

“The majority of the force in Ukraine is most likely forced to prioritize emergency defensive actions,” the ministry said.

This could lead to a further deterioration of the “already limited trust” of deployed troops in Russia’s top military leadership, he added.

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Russia responds ‘cowardly’ to Ukraine’s claim to territory

Senior Ukrainian official Mykhailo Podolyak said Russian strikes in the northeast targeted one of Ukraine’s biggest power stations.

“Deliberate strikes on critical civilian infrastructure (especially on the largest CHPP-5 in Kharkiv) – a manifestation of RF (Russian Federation) terrorism and the desire to leave civilians en masse without electricity and heating,” said adviser to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

“A cowardly ‘response’ for the escape of his own army from the battlefield,” he added.

A photo of the burning electrical infrastructure was shared by Kyrylo Tymoshenko, the deputy head of the president’s office on Telegram.

However, he added that the power supply had been renewed in some areas.

Read the full story here:

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Putin ‘fires army commander after just 16 days’ amid heavy Kharkiv casualties

Russia ousted an army commander within 16 days of his appointment, Ukraine claimed, after forces in Kyiv made significant gains.

Lieutenant General Roman Berdnikov was appointed to the post of Commander of the Western Military District of the Russian Army on August 26, replacing Lieutenant General Sychecvy.

But he lasted just over two weeks before being deported, according to Ukrainian military intelligence. Kyiv attributed the change in leadership to “crushing defeats” inflicted on Russia by its troops in the Kharkiv region.

Read the full story here:

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Map of Ukraine’s success in the Kharkiv region

The Institute for the Study of War (ISW), a US military think tank, has just released a helpful map of Ukraine’s successful counterattack in the Kharkiv region.

The land that Kyiv says it reclaimed in less than a week is shown in blue:

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Ukraine’s spectacular gains are crucial for Europe’s security

Given the worldwide outpouring of grief at the death of Queen Elizabeth II, one of the most significant developments in the war in Ukraine risks going unnoticed.

As a foreign correspondent Bel Trewwho has extensively covered the conflict, wrote yesterday:

In Ukraine – where the continent’s biggest conflict since World War II has turned into a brutal and seemingly hopeless war of attrition – the Ukrainian military emerged this week to dramatically break the stalemate in a a surprise counter-offensive in the northeast.

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Ex-British Army chief praises Ukraine’s ‘smart’ tactics

A former British army chief has praised Kyiv for its “smart” tactics ahead of its counter-offensive in northeast Ukraine.

The Ukrainian army said it had taken over thousands of square kilometers of territory near the city of Kharkiv.

Lord Richard Dannatt, a former British army chief, said the Ukrainians managed to trick the Russians into believing that their main counterattacks would be on the southern front around Kherson.

However, their intention from the start was to focus on the Kharkiv region, according to Lord Dannatt.

“We are witnessing incredible scenes. The Russians undoubtedly suffered a significant setback. And the Ukrainians were very smart in what they did,” he said. Sky News.

“The morale of the Ukrainian forces is at its highest, while that of the Russian forces is terribly low,” he added.

Christi C. Elwood