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Kyiv was hit by an “exceptional” dense attack early Tuesday, a senior Ukrainian military official said in a Telegram post.
“This time, the enemy launched a complex assault from multiple directions simultaneously, using UAVs, cruise missiles and probably ballistic missiles. This attack was exceptional in its density, with the maximum number of attacking missiles in the shortest time possible,” said Serhiy Popko, head of the Kyiv city military administration.
Popko added that “the vast majority of enemy targets in Kyiv's airspace were detected and destroyed.”
This marked the eighth attack on Kyiv since the beginning of May, Popko said.
Popko noted that falling debris was reported in Kyiv’s Solomyanskyi, Shevchenkivskyi, Sviatoshynskyi, Obolonskyi and Darnytskyi districts.
The most damage was reported in Solomianskyi, where a non-residential building and several vehicles caught fire, Popko said.
“We are grateful to our air defense for protecting the lives of Kyiv residents!" Popko said.
Civilians in Kyiv were ordered to seek shelter as multiple explosions were heard early Tuesday (local time).
Air raid sirens went off throughout the city as Ukraine's air defense system was activated to intercept UAVs and other flying objects over several districts, Mayor Vitaliy Klitschko said via Telegram.
Initial reports indicate at least three people were wounded in the capital's Solomyanskyi district, Klitschko said, adding that falling debris set several cars on fire and damaged a large building.
"There have been explosions in Kyiv. Some have happened in the Solomyanskyi district. And in Shevchenkivskyi, rocket debris fell on the territory of the zoo. All emergency services are enroute," Klitschko said.
“Stay in shelters until the air-raid siren goes off!” Kyiv's regional military administration said on Telegram.
It is not clear if the explosions correspond to a missile or drone attack.
The Central Intelligence Agency has launched a new effort to capitalize on what US intelligence officials believe is an “unprecedented” opportunity to convince Russians disaffected by the war in Ukraine and life in Russia to share their secrets, posting a slickly produced, cinematic recruitment video online on Monday.
The push includes a new CIA channel on Telegram, the social media network that is a highly popular source of unfiltered news in Russia. The CIA first posted the video on Telegram, which ends with instructions on how to get in touch with the CIA anonymously and securely. The video is also being posted to its other social media platforms, including YouTube, Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.
CIA officials involved in the project said that Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has created a historic opening “to have Russians come to us and deliver information the United States needs.” It also comes after a previous recruitment drive following the launch of the invasion that the officials said has been successful, with “contact coming in.”
The message, one official said, that they hope to get across to Russians who work in sensitive fields with access to valuable information is: “We understand you, maybe better than you think.”
“We wanted to convey to Russians in their own language we know what they’re going through,” added the official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss the sensitive project.
The official insisted the video is “absolutely not” meant to be incendiary or fuel unrest among the broader population – where Russian President Vladimir Putin still enjoys a high level of support – but rather targets individuals who may be on the fence, and “demystifies” the process of contacting the CIA. It does not mention Putin or even the war Ukraine, in part because it would be “redundant,” but also because they argue it draws on “timeless” themes that have long convinced disaffected Russians to reach out to the CIA.
“Ukraine is top of mind but that’s more or less a symptom of something larger,” one of the officials said. “There are always individuals in Russia who identify with what we have to say here.”
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Here are more of the latest headlines from the Russia-Ukraine war:
Heavy shelling but little movement on eastern front lines: There’s been little change on the front lines in Ukraine over the past day, according to the Ukrainian military — but plenty of shelling. In its daily report, the Ukrainian General Staff said there was heavy fighting around Bakhmut and that Russia had launched “unsuccessful offensive actions” in several locations to the west and southwest of the eastern city.
Videos show intense shelling among high-rise buildings in Bakhmut: Multiple social media videos from Bakhmut show intense battles continuing among high-rise apartment buildings on the western edge of the city. The videos, which are filmed from the Ukrainian side and were published Monday, show strikes among the buildings in a district where fighters of the Wagner private military company have been trying to win ground.
31 US Abrams tanks have arrived in Germany for training of Ukrainian forces: Thirty-one M1 Abrams tanks have arrived in Germany ahead of a training program for Ukrainian forces on the US tanks, the Pentagon said Monday. The Ukrainian crews are expected to begin training at Grafenwohr in Germany in the next couple of weeks, Pentagon press secretary Brig. Gen. Pat Ryder said at a briefing Monday. The training program is expected to take several months, and the tanks are expected to be sent to Ukraine sometime in the fall.
UN aid chief urges all sides to extend Black Sea grain deal: Martin Griffiths, the UN's emergency relief coordinator, said efforts continue to extend a deal allowing the safe Black Sea export of grain from Ukraine, a pact Russia has threatened to quit over obstacles to its own grain and fertilizer exports. "Continuation of the Black Sea Initiative is critically important, as is recommitment by the parties to its smooth and efficient operation," he said.
Ukraine needs more time before counteroffensive, Zelensky says: Ukraine is “preparing very important counteroffensive steps,” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said, but added that the country needs more time. “We really need some more time. Not too much,” before launching the much-anticipated counteroffensive, Zelensky told journalists after he met with British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak in southeast England. He declined to share dates.
A painting by the British street artist Banksy which showed a gymnast waving a ribbon in the air was removed from a destroyed building in Irpin, Ukraine, and moved to a different location within the same city, according to Ukrainian state media Ukrinform.
"We dismantled Banksy's painting from the destroyed nine-story building. Later, it [the building] will be completely demolished, and we will design something else in its place," said Irpin Mayor Oleksandr Markushyn, according to Ukrinform. The mayor attended the event where it was dismantled, Ukrinform reported.
The mural and a segment of the wall it was attached to was dismantled from Severynivska Street and placed in the new location over a period of two weeks, according to the Ukrainian news agency.
Ukrinform said the mural is now in a metal frame to preserve the image and the whole structure weighs 7.5 tons.
"It was important for us to preserve the large fragment of the installation so that future generations would look at this work not as an artistic piece, but as a work that puts many social and political emphases," Zoriana Tikhonchuk, head of the Architecture and Urbanism Committee at the Irpin Reconstruction Summit said as reported by Ukrinform.
Irpin’s mayor added that they plan to create Ukraine's first Contemporary Art Square at the site where the exhibit was moved, Ukrinform said.
"We want to create a Contemporary Art Square, where this Banksy drawing will be the centerpiece. We plan to build a large three-meter concrete fence around the perimeter. We will attract artists from Europe who paint in the style of Banksy," Markushyn said, according to Ukrinform.
Ukrinform added that the art square will be presented to residents in the near future and there will be constant security and video surveillance in the exhibit’s new location.
The mural is one of several works completed by the British street artist in cities across Ukraine, including the capital Kyiv, following Russia’s invasion.
Earlier this year, a ringleader of a group that allegedly tried to steal a Banksy mural from a wall in Ukraine could face up to 12 years in prison. The painting depicted a woman in a gas mask carrying a fire extinguisher.
According to police, the group removed the mural from a wall and had intended to transport it from the site using wooden planks. The suspects, who hail from Kyiv and the central Ukrainian city of Cherkasy, were “detained on the spot,” the head of the Kyiv region military administration, Oleksii Kuleba, said at the time of their arrest in early December.
There’s been little change on the front lines in Ukraine over the past day, according to the Ukrainian military — but plenty of shelling.
In its daily report, the Ukrainian General Staff said there was heavy fighting around Bakhmut and that Russia had launched “unsuccessful offensive actions” in several locations to the west and southwest of the eastern city.
Russians also targeted other areas on the frontlines in Donetsk, including Avdiivka, Mariinka and Vuhledar, with a mix of air strikes and artillery fire. “There were 37 combat engagements. Bakhmut and Mariinka remain at the epicenter of the fighting,” it said.
“Ukrainian defense forces repelled numerous enemy attacks near the town of Mariinka,” it said. The town is in ruins and almost every civilian has left.
Yuriy Fedorenko, an officer in Ukraine’s 92nd Brigade, posted on Telegram that in Bakhmut Ukrainian defenders had managed not only to stabilize the situation but also to gain an advantage in some areas over the past three days.
“The enemy has been pushed away from the main routes of communication, which means that their intention to take Bakhmut in a vice grip has been thwarted,” Fedorenko said.
The General Staff said the Russians had launched more attacks with S-300 missiles against the town of Kostiantynivka, which lies west of Bakhmut.
Geolocated social media video also shows Russian attacks in the Kharkiv region, where the two sides are separated by the river Oskil in some areas.
The General Staff said that in Russian-occupied areas, civilians were still being pressured to take Russian citizenship.
In the Zaporizhzhia region, it said:
“People who agreed to cooperate with the Russian occupiers have been asked to renounce their Ukrainian citizenship in writing and accept Russian citizenship. Those who refuse are threatened by the invaders with dismissal from their jobs and further persecution.”
It also claimed that security checks on the civilian population had been stepped up in Crimea.
Thirty-one M1 Abrams tanks have arrived in Germany ahead of a training program for Ukrainian forces on the US tanks, the Pentagon said Monday.
The Ukrainian crews are expected to begin training at Grafenwohr in Germany in the next couple of weeks, Pentagon press secretary Brig. Gen. Pat Ryder said at a briefing Monday. The training program is expected to take several months, and the tanks are expected to be sent to Ukraine sometime in the fall.
The tanks now arriving in Germany are specifically meant for training Ukrainian crews while the tanks that will ultimately be sent to Ukraine are going through refurbishment and preparation for shipment, Ryder said.
“Because we’re doing this concurrently, we will be able to provide those tanks to them in the fall timeframe to get them into Ukraine before the end of the year,” Ryder said.
The Defense Intelligence of Ukraine said Russian forces are no longer capable of large-scale offensive action and are mainly on the defensive – but Moscow is able to sustain the current rate of missile attacks.
Defense Intelligence spokesperson Andriy Yusov told Ukrainian television Monday that Russia "is on the defensive" when it comes to discussing "the entire front line" and they are without the resources "to repeat large-scale offensive actions."
"They have been preparing for defense all this time, and this is a serious factor that the Ukrainian command certainly takes into account when preparing for the de-occupation of Ukrainian territories," the official added.
Yusov said the goal of Russian missile strikes have changed and their intensity has lessened since the winter when there were high-volume attacks on Ukraine’s energy infrastructure.
The Russians had a shortage of some types of missiles, such as the Kalibr, he claimed.
“They are actively looking for ways to compensate for and change not only the Shaheds [Iranian-made attack drones.]. ..They are looking for weapons all over the world. So far, they have not been very successful," he said.
Despite this, Yusov said the Russians are "capable of sustaining the intensity of attacks,” at least for now. He estimated that they still have large stockpiles of S-300 missiles, which are capable of considerable destruction. The S-300 was designed as an anti-air weapon but the Russians have frequently used it in a ground-to-ground mode, in which it is not very accurate.
Yusov said that on Ukraine’s northern border, the Russians were increasingly using “subversive reconnaissance groups” that were trying to probe border regions. Some had shot at civilians in the northern region of Chernihiv, he alleged.
The Ukrainian official also claimed that Kyiv was aware of the “health problems” of Belarus leader Alexander Lukashenko, but said he would not elaborate on the topic "for various reasons." Lukashenko has not been seen in public since a recent visit to Moscow. On Sunday he did not appear at a national celebration in the capital Minsk to mark the annual Day of the State Flag, Emblem, and Anthem of Belarus.