Sun, 25 September 2022
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Zelenskyy warns of 'ugly' Russian attack

Update : 21 Aug 2022, 10:52

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy on Saturday warned Ukrainians to be vigilant in the coming week as they prepare to celebrate their Independence Day.

In his nightly video address, Zelenskyy said Ukrainians must not allow Moscow to "spread despondency and fear" among them as they celebrate the 31st anniversary of independence from Soviet rule on August 24.

"We must all be aware that this week Russia could try to do something particularly ugly, something particularly vicious," Zelenskyy said.

August 24 also marks six months since the start of Moscow’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine.

During his address, Zelenskyy also referenced Crimea in a cryptic fashion following a series of blasts there, none of which Ukraine has claimed responsibility for.

"You can literally feel Crimea in the air this year, that the occupation there is only temporary and that Ukraine is coming back,"  Zelenskyy said.

Here's an overview of some of the other major stories concerning the war in Ukraine on August 20.

Kyiv residents could inspect a number of damaged and captured Russian tanks in the capital on Saturday as Ukraine gets ready to commemorate its independence day.

A video shared on Twitter showed people in the Ukrainian capital taking pictures and even climbing on the destroyed armored vehicles.

Ukraine commemorates its independence from the Soviet Union on August 24.

Ukrainian lawmaker Roman Hryshchuk tweeted "Russian tanks at the parade in the center of Kyiv."

"But, there is one nuance," he said, in an apparent ironic reference to the lack of Russian military personnel accompanying the vehicles.

On Thursday, a UK Ministry of Defense intelligence update reported "heavy attrition" of Russian tanks in Ukraine, which it partially attributed to "Russia's failure to fit and properly employ adequate explosive reactive armor."

Austria summons Russian diplomat for inhuman statements about Ukrainians
Austria's Foreign Ministry has summoned for Sunday Russia's permanent representative to international organizations in Vienna, Mikhail Ulyanov.

The ministry is reacting to Ulyanov’s tweet interpreted by many as a call to eliminate Ukrainians. Russian diplomat wrote "No mercy to the Ukrainian population!" under a tweet by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, who thanked the US for the latest arms package.

Ulyanov later deleted his post and stated that its content had been misinterpreted.

However, Austria's Foreign Ministry said that they are outraged by Ulyanov’s inhuman statements and "by his attempts to relativize what cannot be relativized."

"We stand for freedom of expression. But we are also free to take a firm stand against such inflammatory statements," the ministry wrote on Twitter.

Ukrainian officials have called on Austria to expel Ulyanov.

Russia's defense ministry accused Ukraine on Saturday of poisoning some of its servicemen in the Russian-controlled part of Ukraine's southeastern region of Zaporizhzhia in late July.

According to the Russian defense ministry, a number of Russian servicemen had been taken to a military hospital with signs of serious poisoning on July 31. Tests showed a toxic substance, botulinum toxin type B, in their bodies, it said.

"On the fact of chemical terrorism sanctioned by the (Ukrainian President Volodymyr) Zelenskyy regime, Russia is preparing supporting evidence with the results of all the analyses," the ministry said in a statement.

An adviser to Ukraine's interior ministry said in response that the alleged poisoning could have been caused by Russian forces eating expired canned meat.

Botulinum toxin type B is a neurotoxin that can cause botulism when ingested in previously contaminated food products, but it can also have medical uses.

A Russian missile hit a residential area of a southern Ukrainian town of Voznesensk not far from a nuclear power station on Saturday, wounding 12 civilians and heightening fears of a nuclear accident.

The town is about 30 km (19 miles) from the Pivdennoukrainsk nuclear power plant, the second largest in Ukraine after Russian-held Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant.

State-run Energoatom, which manages all four Ukrainian nuclear energy generators, described the attack on Voznesensk as "another act of Russian nuclear terrorism."

"It is possible that this missile was aimed specifically at the Pivdennoukrainsk nuclear power plant, which the Russian military tried to seize back at the beginning of March," Energoatom said in a statement.


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