August 9, 2022 Russia-Ukraine news

By Kathleen Magramo, Heather Chen, Jack Guy, Hafsa Khalil, Aditi Sangal, Adrienne Vogt and Meg Wagner, CNN

Updated 3:06 a.m. ET, August 10, 2022
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2:21 a.m. ET, August 9, 2022

Buyer refuses cargo of first grain ship to leave Ukraine under UN deal, Ukrainian officials say

From CNN's AnneClaire Stapleton

The cargo ship Razoni, which departed from Odesa within the framework of the grain shipment agreement, is pictured in Istanbul, Turkey on August 3.
The cargo ship Razoni, which departed from Odesa within the framework of the grain shipment agreement, is pictured in Istanbul, Turkey on August 3. (Hakan Akgun/ dia images/Getty Images)

A buyer in Lebanon has rejected the cargo of the first grain ship to leave Ukraine since the early days of the war due to delayed delivery, according to a statement from the Ukrainian Embassy in the Middle Eastern country. 

The M/V Razoni departed the Black Sea port of Odesa on August 1, carrying more than 26,000 metric tons of corn under a UN-brokered deal aimed at easing the global food crisis sparked by Russia's invasion.

“According to the information provided by the shipper of the Ukrainian grain aboard the Razoni, the buyer in Lebanon refused to accept the cargo due to delays in delivery terms," the statement said. "So the shipper is now looking for another consignee to offload his cargo either in Lebanon/Tripoli or any other country/port.”

Some context: Ukrainian officials say they aim increase grain shipments to three to five vessels per day within the next two weeks. Shipments continued Monday, with two vessels carrying 60,000 metric tons of agricultural products to international markets departing from ports in southern Ukraine.

8:44 p.m. ET, August 8, 2022

Up to 80,000 Russian casualties in Ukraine, Pentagon official says

From CNN's Ellie Kaufman

Between 70,000 and 80,000 Russians have been killed or wounded during the war in Ukraine, Colin Kahl, Defense Department undersecretary for policy, said during an on-camera briefing at the Pentagon on Monday.

“I think it’s safe to suggest that the Russians have probably taken 70 or 80,000 casualties in less than six months. Now that is a combination of killed in action and wounded in action, that number might be a little lower, little higher, but I think that’s kind of in the ballpark,” Kahl said.

Kahl said that number of casualties from Russian forces is “remarkable” considering Russia has “achieved none of Vladimir Putin’s objectives” since invading Ukraine at the end of February.

“The Ukrainian morale and will to fight is unquestioned, and much higher I think than the average will to fight on the Russian side, so I think that gives the Ukrainians a significant advantage,” Kahl added.

8:37 p.m. ET, August 8, 2022

Pentagon announces extra $1 billion in security assistance for Ukraine 

From CNN's Barbara Starr and Ellie Kaufman

The US Defense Department Monday announced a $1 billion package of additional weapons and security assistance for Ukraine in the latest round of military aid.

It is “the largest single drawdown of US arms and equipment” since August 2021, according to a Pentagon statement. This marks the eighteenth drawdown by the Pentagon.

What the package includes: The package for the first time will have munitions for the National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile Systems (NASAMS), a US-Norwegian air defense system the Ukrainians need for shooting down Russian cruise missiles aimed at population centers.

The transfer of NASAMS itself could still be some days away according to US defense officials. The first system to arrive is expected to be from Norway, which can get it to Ukraine quicker than the US. 

This package focuses heavily on additional ammunition and weapons that Ukrainian forces have used successfully against Russian forces in eastern Ukraine. There is additional ammunition for High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS), 75,000 rounds of 155mm artillery ammunition and 1,000 Javelin anti-tank weapons among key items. This is the first transfer of Javelin’s announced since June. There are also hundreds of AT4 anti-armor weapons included. 

12:40 a.m. ET, August 9, 2022

UN chief condemns "suicidal" shelling around Ukrainian nuclear plant

From CNN's Tim Lister, Yulia Kesaieva and Tara John

The Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant on August 4.
The Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant on August 4. (Alexander Ermochenko/File/Reuters)

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres described recent artillery and rocket fire around the Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant in central Ukraine as "suicidal," further adding to fears of an accident at the plant, which is the largest of its kind in Europe.

"Any attack on nuclear power plants is a suicidal thing," Guterres told reporters Monday in Tokyo. "I hope that these attacks will end," he said, and called on the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to be given access to the plant.

The Zaporizhzhia plant occupies an extensive site on the Dnipro river. It has continued operating at reduced capacity since Russian forces captured it early in March, with Ukrainian technicians remaining at work.

On Sunday, Ukraine's state energy company Energoatom said that one worker had been injured by Russian shelling around the facility on Saturday.

Energoatom claimed that three radiation monitoring sensors were also damaged, saying "timely detection and response in case of aggravation of the radiation situation or leakage of radiation from spent nuclear fuel casks are currently impossible."

"This time a nuclear catastrophe was miraculously avoided, but miracles cannot last forever," the company added.

Speaking on Ukrainian television, Energoatom's chairman Petro Kotin said one strike Sunday was up to 20 meters away from the processed fuel storage area.

"If they had hit the containers with the processed fuel, it would be a radiation accident," he said.

Read the full story here.