Thursday, June 13, 2024

Kyiv says its forces hit one of Putin’s most advanced Su-57 warplanes – latest news

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Zelensky says China trying to undermine Ukraine peace summit

Ukraine says it has successfully hit one of Russia’s most-advanced warplanes, stationed at an airbase nearly 600km (370 miles) from the frontline.

If confirmed, it would mark Ukraine’s first known successful strike on an Su-57 plane, a twin-engine stealth fighter worth £28m. Ukraine’s Southern Operational Command said Russia only had six Su-57s in operation.

The strike, believed to have been conducted using drones, comes after Ukraine’s Western allies permitted Kyiv to use their weapons for limited strikes inside Russia.

Earlier, US president Joe Biden said Vladimir Putin was not going to stop with the war in Ukraine, pledging to support Europe against Russia.

Mr Biden said the whole of Europe was threatened by the Russian president. The US president met his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron in Paris, and the two pledged solidarity on the wars raging in Europe and the Middle East.

Meanwhile, Volodymyr Zelensky declared that the Russian army had failed in its Kharkiv offensive that began almost a month ago.

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Ukraine shares images of destroyed Russian Su-57 stealth fighter

Ukraine’s main intelligence agency has shared satellite images that it says show the impact of its latest strike deep inside Russian territory, targeting one of Moscow’s most advanced warplanes.

The photos show the aftermath of what was likely a drone strike on the Akhtubinsk base in southern Russia, hitting an Su-57 aircraft.

The Su-57, which is capable of carrying stealth missiles across hundreds of kilometres (miles), was among “a countable few” of its type in Moscow’s arsenal, Kyiv’s intelligence agency said. Russia has not issued any comment over the weekend addressing the Ukrainian claims of the attack on its airbase.

In a before photo taken on 7 June, Friday – a day before the attack – the airbase has an aircraft on its tarmac but the after photo taken on Saturday showed black soot spots on the same spot and craters around the parked Sukhoi.

The drone attack took place on Saturday at the Akhtubinsk base in southern Russia, some 589km from the war frontline
The drone attack took place on Saturday at the Akhtubinsk base in southern Russia, some 589km from the war frontline (Defence Intelligence of Ukraine/ X)

According to reports by Russian agencies, Moscow’s armed forces obtained “more than 10” new Su-57s last year, while 76 are set to be produced by 2028.

Arpan Rai10 June 2024 05:33

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Switzerland says 90 states, organizations signed up for Ukraine summit

Ninety states and organisations have so far registered to take part in a summit aiming to pave the way for peace in Ukraine that Switzerland will host from June 15-16, the Swiss government said on Monday.

Russia has not been invited to the summit due to be held in central Switzerland, but the government said in a statement that the gathering will aim to “jointly define a roadmap” on how to involve both it and Ukraine in a future peace process.

Switzerland in January agreed to host the summit at the behest of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, and has tried to drum up support for it among countries that have better relations with Moscow than leading Western powers.

Russia has dismissed the summit as a waste of time. It was not invited to participate, Switzerland says, because it signalled it had no interest in attending. Switzerland also stresses though, that Russia must be part of the peace process.

Alexander Butler10 June 2024 08:26

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Putin could visit North Korea in coming weeks, reports Russian media

Russian president Vladimir Putin will visit North Korea and Vietnam in the coming weeks, the Vedomosti newspaper reported today, citing a diplomatic source.

Russia’s ambassador to North Korea Alexander Matsegora confirmed to Vedomosti that the president’s visit to Pyongyang will happen and is being “actively prepared”.

The newspaper said Putin could visit Vietnam as early as June and most likely immediately after his visit to North Korea. Putin’s only previous trip to North Korea was in 2000, the first year of his presidency.

The Kremlin has said Russia wants to build a partnership with North Korea “in all areas” but has yet to confirm the date of the visit. Russia has stepped up ties with North Korea and other countries hostile to the United States such as Iran since the start of the war with Ukraine – relations that are a source of concern to the West.

Arpan Rai10 June 2024 07:47

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Russian military bloggers criticise Moscow for not protecting Su-57

Angry Russian military bloggers have slammed Moscow and the Russian military command after a drone strike by Ukraine damaged a top-tier warplane.

Mil-bloggers “seized on the 8 June strike to criticise the Russian military command for not constructing hangars to hide Russian aircraft from Ukrainian strikes and claimed that Russian forces could construct hangars at every military airfield in Russia for the cost of one Su-57 aircraft,” said the Washington-based think-tank The Institute for the Study of War.

An Su-57 costs an estimated $35m, it added.

Citing Ukraine’s Southern Operational Command, the ISW said that the Ukrainian forces struck one of Russia’s six operational Su-57 aircraft and that Russian forces are constructing another six aircraft.

“GUR Spokesperson Andriy Yusov stated that there may have been two Su-57 aircraft at the airfield during the 8 June strike and that the GUR is assessing battle damage,” the ISW said in its latest analysis.

Arpan Rai10 June 2024 06:45

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Watch: Zelensky inspects French military equipment after Macron promises warplanes to Ukraine

France plans to provide Mirage 2000 warplanes to Ukraine and train Ukrainian pilots this summer, the French president said.

It was not confirmed how many single-engine jet fighters would be provided, by when or under what financial terms.

Mr Macron added that France had proposed to train 4,500 Ukrainian soldiers but did not say where the soldiers would be trained.

Russian president Vladimir Putin has threatened to retaliate against Western countries that are allowing Ukraine to hit Russia with their long-range missiles.

Arpan Rai10 June 2024 06:36

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Arpan Rai10 June 2024 06:12

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G7 plans to warn small Chinese banks over Russia ties

US officials expect the Group of Seven (G7) wealthy democracies to send a tough new warning next week to smaller Chinese banks to stop assisting Russia in evading Western sanctions, according to two people familiar with the matter.

Leaders gathering at the 13-15 June summit in Italy hosted by prime minister Giorgia Meloni are expected to focus heavily during their private meetings on the threat posed by burgeoning Chinese-Russian trade to the fight in Ukraine, and what to do about it.

Those conversations are likely to result in public statements on the issue involving Chinese banks, according to a US official involved in planning the event and another person briefed on the issue.

The United States and its G7 partners – Britain, Canada France, Germany, Italy and Japan – are not expected to take any immediate punitive action against any banks during the summit, such as restricting their access to the Swift messaging system or cutting off access to the dollar.

Joe Middleton10 June 2024 06:00

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Zelensky lays out plan to protect Ukraine, includes ‘America’s leadership’

Volodymyr Zelensky said he is aiming to amp up support for the war-hit nation and hinted a new agreements of support for Kyiv in progress in a long-term plan for Ukraine’s recovery.

“One of our primary goals right now is to increase support for Ukraine in order to strengthen our society’s resilience in terms of energy, recovery after strikes, and all of the other foundations of normal life. We must protect life despite Russia’s attempts to bring more pressure and destruction,” he said last night.

Mr Zelensky added: “We are working with European partners on new agreements, particularly on additional support steps from Germany. These days, we are also working diligently to prepare a bilateral security agreement between Ukraine and the United States.”

“We are making every effort to ensure that America’s leadership is felt. I am grateful to everyone who helps,” he said.

The war in Ukraine has entered 837th day today.

Arpan Rai10 June 2024 05:06

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Ukraine hit one of Putin’s most advanced warplanes, it says

Ukrainian forces have hit an ultra-modern Russian warplane stationed on an air base nearly 600km (370 miles) from the frontline, after its Western allies allowed Kyiv to use their weapons for limited strikes inside Russia.

If confirmed, it would mark Ukraine’s first known successful strike on a Su-57 fighter plane, a twin-engine stealth fighter lauded as Moscow’s most advanced military aircraft.

Satellite photos shared by Kyiv’s main intelligence agency showed the aftermath of the attack. In one photo, black soot marks and small craters can be seen dotting a concrete strip around the parked aircraft.

According to the Main Intelligence Directorate of Ukraine’s Ministry of Defence, the strike took place on Saturday at the Akhtubinsk base in southern Russia, some 589km (366 miles) from the frontline. It wasn’t immediately clear what weapons were used, but the airfield’s distance from Ukraine suggests that it was likely hit by drones.

Arpan Rai10 June 2024 04:39

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Russian forces close to capturing Ukrainian town near Bakhmut

Russian forces are likely making headway towards their longstanding goal of capturing the strategic Ukrainian town of Chasiv Yar, military sources from both sides of the war said.

A Ukrainian military source and a blogger said the Russian forces had started occupying a district of the town alongside a canal, reported Ukrainian media outlet Ukrainska Pravda.

“Over the past week, there have been more than 1,500 instances of shelling of the outskirts of Chasiv Yar from the north to the south,” it quoted its source as saying.

They added that Russian troops were using guided aerial bombs to clear areas along a major road “and with the support of multiple long-range missiles and drones they have begun to move forward and build up their forces”.

From the Russian side, its 98th Paratrooper Division said Ukrainian forces were “doing everything possible to ensure our units do not move across the canal and take up positions in the ‘New’ district on the other side”. Russian assault units were continuing to clear the canal district, it said.

Chasiv Yar stands on high ground about 20km (12 miles) to the west of Bakhmut, a town Russian forces seized a year ago after months of battles that flattened nearly all its buildings.

If captured, the town will serve as a potential staging point for Russia to advance on the key cities of Kramatorsk and Sloviansk.

Arpan Rai10 June 2024 04:27

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