A senior official in Russian-annexed Crimea accused Ukraine on Sunday of carrying out a drone attack ahead of planned celebrations to mark Navy Day, injuring five and forcing the cancellation of festivities.
The accusation comes hours before Russian President Vladimir Putin is due to oversee Navy Day celebrations in his hometown of St Petersburg and approve Russia’s naval doctrine as Moscow presses on with its military intervention in Ukraine.
“An unidentified object flew into the courtyard of the fleet’s headquarters,” Mikhail Razvozhayev, governor of Sevastopol, home to Russia’s Black Sea fleet, wrote on the Telegram messaging app.
“According to preliminary information, it is a drone.”
He said Ukraine had decided to “spoil Navy Day for us”.
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Flawed Russian tactics brutally exposed in Ukraine ambushVideo released by the Ukrainian Armed Forces showed the 93rd Mechanised Brigade of Ukraine striking a fast-moving Russian T-80 tank. The video shows the tank desperately trying to “slip through the danger zone” as it races through an open road.
The Russian T-80 MBT is then struck by an anti-tank-guided missile, prompting it to suddenly stop in its tracks.
The missile sparked a huge explosion as smoke billowed from the tank.
UA Weapons, which monitors the military campaign in Ukraine, tweeted: “A moving Russian T-80 tank was destroyed by the 93rd Mechanized Brigade of Ukraine in the vicinity of Izium, #Kharkiv Oblast, using an anti-tank guided missile.”
Putin says Russian navy to get new hypersonic missiles soonPresident Vladimir Putin said on Sunday that the Russian navy would receive hypersonic Zircon cruise missiles within the next few months and that the area of their deployment would depend on Russian interests.
Speaking on Russia’s Navy Day in the former imperial capital of St Petersburg, Putin praised Tsar Peter the Great for making Russia a great sea power. Putin did not mention Ukraine directly.
But the Kremlin chief said he had signed a new navy doctrine, the details of which were not published, and touted the Zircon hypersonic cruise missiles as unique in the world.
“The delivery of these (missiles) to the Russian armed forces will start in the coming months,” Putin said. “The Admiral Gorshkov frigate will be the first to go on combat duty with these formidable weapons on board.”
“The key thing here is the capability of the Russian navy…
“It is able to respond with lightning speed to all who decides to infringe on our sovereignty and freedom.”
Ukraine ‘has given Putin bloody nose’ with estimated Russian casualties exceeding 100,000Ukraine has given Vladimir Putin’s Russia a “bloody nose” and may have inflicted casualties in excess of 100,000 troops, a former Army officer and defence analyst has said.
Lieutenant Colonel Stuart Crawford, who served in the Royal Tank Regiment for 20 years, including during the Gulf War in 1990-91, retired in 1999.
The Ministry of Defence yesterday said Ukraine’s counteroffensive was gathering momentum in the Russian-controlled southern Ukrainian city of Kherson – something which was no surprise to Lt Col Crawford.
He told Express.co.uk: “I said back in March that what I thought would happen was that the war would get stuck in the Donbas and the Ukrainians would, with Western help, slowly build up their weaponry, train up their soldiers and mount a counter-offensive aiming to retake curse in the south and threatened the Crimea.
“And that seems to be what’s happening, although I’m slightly wary of it because the Ukrainians have been so open about their intention to attack Kherson and threaten Crimea that I’m just wondering whether that’s disinformation that they’re carrying out, and they’re going to do something else.
“But I think the essential truth is that the Russians have exhausted their immediate military capability and are undertaking what we call an operational pause, where they sort of catch their breath basically, rearm, retrain, bring fresh troops in etc.”
Lukashenko backs himself into corner as ‘wholly dependent’ on RussiaIn its latest update on the Russia-Ukraine conflict, the UK Defence Ministry accused Belarus of facilitating a missile attack on Ukraine by the Russian military.
In a statement, the British Government said President Lukashenko’s regime is “ever more authoritarian”.
The statement read: “On 28 July 2022, Russia fired at least 20 missiles into northern Ukraine from Belarusian territory.
“This follows Russia’s use of Belarusian territory to launch the main thrusts of its failed attempt to take Kyiv in February.
“Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko continues to follow Moscow’s line on the Ukraine conflict, stating on 21 July that Ukraine must accept Russia’s demands for the war to stop.
“His regime has become ever more authoritarian, with the expansion of the death penalty for ‘preparing terrorist acts’.
“His increasing and baseless accusations of Western designs on Belarus and Ukraine likely indicate that he has become almost wholly dependent on Russia.”
The North district command of the Ukrainian armed forces said more than 20 missiles had been fired at the Chernihiv region bordering Russia from a base in Belarus.
The Government’s response comes as Belarus recalled its ambassador to Britain on Friday in response to what it called “hostile and unfriendly” actions by London.
Lukashenko is backing Putin’s attack on Ukraine (Image: GETTY)
Brussels urged to issue visa ban on ‘terrorism sponsor’ RussiaLatvian Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkēvičs said the EU should publicly condemn the deaths in Olenivka and brand Russia a “sponsor of terrorism”.
In a tweet, he said: “I condemn the brutal murder of Ukrainian POWs by Russian Armed Forces in Olenivka and ongoing atrocities committed by the Russian military against Ukraine.
“EU must consider Russia as state sponsor of terrorism, I reiterate proposal to impose EU tourist visa ban for Russian citizens.”
The UN had said it was prepared to send experts to investigate if it obtained consent from both parties.
Russia invites UN, Red Cross experts to probe Ukraine jail deathsRussia on Sunday invited United Nations and Red Cross experts to probe the deaths of dozens of Ukrainian prisoners held by Moscow-backed separatists, while Ukraine’s president ordered the evacuation of residents in the eastern region of Donetsk.
President Volodymyr Zelensky said hundreds of thousands of people were still exposed to fierce fighting in the Donbas region, which contains Donetsk and Luhansk province.
“Many refuse to leave but it still needs to be done,” Mr Zelensky said in a televised address late on Saturday.
“The more people leave the Donetsk region now, the fewer people the Russian army will have time to kill.”
Ukraine and Russia have traded accusations over a missile strike or explosion early on Friday that appeared to have killed dozens of Ukrainian prisoners of war in the front-line town of Olenivka in eastern Donetsk.
Russia invited experts from the U.N. and Red Cross to probe the deaths “in the interests of conducting an objective investigation”, the defence ministry said on Sunday.
The ministry had published a list of 50 Ukrainian prisoners of war killed and 73 wounded in what it said was a Ukrainian military strike with a U.S.-made High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS).
Ukraine’s armed forces denied responsibility, saying Russian artillery had targeted the prison to hide mistreatment there.