Ukraine has accused Russia of launching cruise missile strikes against Kharkiv in “revenge” for battlefield defeats suffered by the invading force in recent days.
The mayor of Kharkiv city, Ihor Terekhov, said a strike had cut off electricity and water supplies to the city. There were also reports of blackouts in Dnipro, Poltava and other eastern cities, potentially affecting millions of civilians, but Kyrylo Tymoshenko, the deputy head of President Volodymyr Zelenskiy’s office, later said power had been restored in some regions.
Here is a video showing some of the destruction.
You can read the whole story here:
The success of Ukrainian forces in pushing Russian troops out of the Kharkiv region “has significant implications for Russia’s overall operational design”, according to the UK Ministry of Defence, and for the morale of its soldiers on the ground.
“The majority of the force in Ukraine is most likely forced to prioritize emergency defensive actions,” read a Twitter post on Monday morning.
“The already limited trust the deployed troops have in Russia’s senior military leadership is likely to worsen further.”
Russia has likely ordered the withdrawal of its troops from the entire occupied Kharkiv Oblast region west of the Oskil River, according to the British Ministry of Defence.
British military intelligence said in a Twitter post on Monday morning that “isolated pockets of resistance remain in this sector, but since Wednesday Ukraine has recaptured territory at least twice the size of Greater London”, which would equate to 3,000 square kilometers.
In southern Ukraine, near Kherson, the MoD says Russia may struggle to bring sufficient reserves across the Dnipro River to the front line on the river’s west bank. “An improvised floating bridge Russia started over two weeks ago remains incomplete,” the MoD says. “Ukrainian long-range artillery now probably hits crossings of the Dnipro so often that Russia cannot carry out repairs on damaged road bridges.”
Volodymyr Zelensky has delivered a fierce response to Russian attacks on the Kharkiv region.
In a nightly message on Telegram, the Ukrainian president said that even if the Kremlin tried to deprive his people of “gas, light, water and food”, it would not succeed in defeating them.
“Do you still think you can scare us, break us, make us make concessions?” he asks in a moving polemic that is worth writing in its entirety:
Even through the impenetrable darkness, Ukraine and the civilized world clearly see these terrorist acts.
Deliberate and cynical missile attacks on civilian critical infrastructure. No military facilities. Kharkiv and Donetsk regions were cut off. In Zaporizhia, Dnipropetrovsk and Sumy there are partial problems with the power supply.
Do you still think we are “a people”?
Do you still think you can scare us, break us, make us make concessions?
Did you really not understand anything?
Don’t you understand who we are? What are we for? What are we talking about?
Read my lips:
Without gas or without you? without you
Without light or without you? without you
Without water or without you? without you
Without food or without you? without you
Cold, hunger, darkness and thirst are not as terrifying and deadly to us as your “friendship and brotherhood”.
But history will put everything in its place. And we will be with gas, electricity, water and food.. and WITHOUT you!
Western governments are mobilizing their arms manufacturers to increase production and replenish stocks severely depleted by supplying Ukraine’s six-month-old fight against Russia’s invasion, according to Agence-France Presse.
US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin is organizing a meeting of senior national arms directors from allied countries to make long-term plans to supply Ukraine and rebuild their own arms stockpiles.
“They will discuss how our defense industrial bases can best equip Ukraine’s future forces with the capabilities they need,” he said at a meeting at Ramstein Air Force Base in Germany of the Ukraine Contact Group, 50 countries currently supporting the war effort .
Pentagon arms acquisition chief Bill LaPlante said the meeting would take place in Brussels on September 28. The goal was to determine “how we can continue to work together to increase production of key capabilities and address supply chain issues and increase interoperability and interchangeability of our systems,” LaPlante told reporters at the Pentagon.
Nato has delivered millions of dollars worth of military supplies to Ukraine since the beginning of the conflict, including Himar mobile missile systems.
The United States has pledged $15.2 billion worth of armsincluding Javelin anti-tank missiles, artillery and ammunition compatible with Nato weapons.
EU countries agreed in July to spend an additional €500m (£425m) to supply arms to Ukraine, which has taken the bloc’s security aid to €2.5bn. since February.
The UK has committed to spending more than £1bn. on arming Ukraine.
Hi, I’m Martin Farrer and I’ll be bringing you updates on the war in Ukraine for the next hour or so.
The most important development is the fallout from Ukraine’s rapid counter-offensive in the Kharkiv region, which has seen the country regain at least 3,000 square kilometers of territory east of the city.
Russia, which has not commented on the casualties, responded by firing 11 cruise missiles at the Kharkiv and Donetsk regions.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy has accused Russia of “terrorist” attacks on infrastructure goals in Kharkiv, the country’s second city. The attacks came hours after Ukrainian forces recaptured thousands of square kilometers of territory east of the city as Russian forces abandoned their positions in the face of a counteroffensive. Zelenskiy said in a message on Telegram on Sunday evening that “Ukraine and the civilized world clearly see these terrorist acts” and that Russia was trying to deprive his people of “gas, light, water and food”. He added that Ukraine would prevail and appeared to turn to the Russian leadership, saying: “Do you still think you can scare us?”
Russian forces fired a total of 11 missiles at eastern Ukraine, the Ukrainian Air Force announced in a tweet on Sunday night, causing a total blackout in Kharkiv and Donetsk regions and partial blackout in Zaporizhzhia, Dnipropetrovsk and Sumy regions. Mykhailo Podolyak, adviser to Ukraine’s president, said Kharkiv*s CHPP-5 power station – one of the largest in Ukraine – had been hit. Kyrylo Tymoshenko, the deputy head of the president’s office, later said power had been restored in some regions.
The US ambassador to Ukraine, Bridget Brink, also condemned Russia’s attack on the electricity and water facilities. “Russia’s apparent response to Ukraine’s liberation of towns and villages in the east: sending missiles to try to destroy critical civilian infrastructure,” Brink tweeted.
The general commanding Russia’s Western Army Group has been fired in the wake of the retreat in the Kharkiv region, according to Ukrainian military intelligence. It reported on its Telegram channel that Gen Roman Berdnikov has been replaced after only 17 days in his post, GUR said.
Moscow’s leadership has remained silent about the defeats in Ukraine, with neither President Vladimir Putin nor his defense minister, Sergei Shoigu, making any comments as of midday Sunday. However, its Defense Ministry said on Telegram that its forces in the Kharkiv region had “inflicted defeat” on Ukrainian units in Pristin, Boldyrevka, Sinikha, Beloe, Komarovka, Gorokhovatka, Kupyansk, Senkovo and Podvysokoje in the Kharkov region.
A Russian nationalist militant and former FSB officer who helped start a 2014 war in Ukraine’s eastern Donbas region compared the collapse of one of the conflict’s main frontlines to a catastrophic defeat in the Russo-Japanese War that sparked Russia’s 1905 revolution. Igor Girkin said it was like the Battle of Mukden in 1905, which ended two days after the revolution started.
Ukraine has shut down the last operating reactor on Sunday at Europe’s largest nuclear power plant to protect against a disaster while fighting rages nearby.
Russia and Ukraine accuse each other of shelling the Russian-held Zaporizhzhia plant and risking the release of radiation. The International Atomic Energy Agency said a backup power line to the plant had been restored, providing the external electricity it needed to carry out the shutdown while defending against the risk of a meltdown.
French President Emmanuel Macron told Putin in a phone call on Sunday the facility’s occupation by Russian troops is why its security is compromised, the French presidency said. Putin blamed the Ukrainian forces, according to a Kremlin statement.