November 7, 2022 Russia-Ukraine news

By Kathleen Magramo and Joshua Berlinger, CNN

Updated 2:41 a.m. ET, November 8, 2022
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5:42 a.m. ET, November 7, 2022

Russian forces step up raids on civilians in occupied Kherson

From CNN's Olga Voitovych and Mick Krever in Kyiv

Russian forces have stepped up their scrutiny of civilians in occupied areas of Ukraine’s southern Kherson region, detaining locals to root out partisan resistance, according to the Ukrainian military.

In the occupied city of Kherson, Russian troops are now largely wearing civilian clothing and living in civilian housing as they “strengthen positions inside for conducting street battles,” according to the Ukrainian military and a resident of the city with whom CNN exchanged messages.

“Amid the counteroffensive of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, the occupiers have significantly intensified filtration measures,” the National Resistance Center, a creation of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, said on Monday. “Raids among the local population have intensified in the temporarily occupied part of Kherson region. The occupiers are actively looking for the underground movement.”

The National Resistance Center said that it was aware of dozens of detentions in recent days. It called on civilians to leave the occupied territories “if possible” while the Ukrainian military pushed its counter-offensive.

Fewer checkpoints, more aggressive behavior: A resident of the occupied city of Kherson told CNN through a third party on Sunday that Russian soldiers in occupied villages are behaving more aggressively towards civilians.

“On the west bank, near Snihurivka, there are cases of occupiers moving into locals’ houses when people move to the city,” the resident said. “Many soldiers came to the villages, they settle in empty houses. But there are cases when they kick people out of their homes.”

CNN is not identifying the Kherson resident for their safety. The city of Kherson itself has been “relatively quiet,” she said. 

“From time to time you can hear automatic gunfire at night,” the resident said. “There is a curfew in the city, and no one goes out at night. The occupiers have created some kind of territorial defense in the city, which deals with security issues.”

Checkpoints within the city itself have been removed, she said.

“There are only checkpoints at the entrance to the city. At the checkpoint they check documents and look what is in the car. If it is public transport, then the soldier enters the minibus. It may vary, it all depends on the mood of the occupiers. They can start checking phones and force men to undress to check for tattoos.”

More young soldiers appearing: The resident said that most soldiers appear to be over the age of 30, but that they had begun to see more young men, around ages 18 to 20.

Russian authorities continued Monday to try to restore electricity after an outage on Sunday.

“I think electricity and communication will be restored in the near future,” Kirill Stremousov, the Russia-appointed deputy head of Kherson region military administration, said Monday morning in a video on Telegram. “There is no food problem in the city, there are foodstuffs. It's true that some pharmacies are shut, but it is not impossible to get social benefits. We keep working on this too.”

Stremousov said that authorities continued to offer “evacuation” to the eastern bank of the Dnipro River, including now to bed-ridden civilians or those with reduced mobility.

Evacuation offers like this have sparked concerns that Ukrainian citizens may be forced to go to Russian territory against their will. Reports emerged early in the war of tens of thousands of Ukrainian civilians being forcibly sent to so-called “filtration centers” before being moved to Russia. Moscow denounced the claims as lies, alleging that Ukraine has hindered its efforts to “evacuate” people to Russia.

The Kherson city resident who spoke to CNN viewed the idea of getting on an “evacuation bus” to Crimea as a “one-way ticket.”

5:30 a.m. ET, November 7, 2022

It's 12:30 p.m. in Kyiv. This is what you need to know

One of the major issues Ukraine faces as it fends off Russian attacks is how to keep its population from freezing. With winter slowly approaching, Moscow has continually attacked energy and infrastructure targets in recent weeks. Here's the latest on the energy situation across Ukraine:

  • Outages coming: Ukraine’s state-energy company said Monday that the country would be subjected to further power cuts, both scheduled and unscheduled, due to damage from recent Russian attacks on infrastructure. The scheduled outages will take place throughout the day in Kyiv city and the regions of Kyiv, Chernihiv, Cherkasy, Zhytomyr, Sumy, Kharkiv and Poltava.
  • Prepare for the worst: Kyiv Mayor Vitali Klitschko said the Ukrainian capital must ready itself for further attacks on its already imperiled energy infrastructure. Klitschko said the Kremlin's strategy was not war, but rather "terrorism" and even "genocide." “Our enemies are doing everything to keep the city without heat, electricity, and water supply, and in general, they want us all to die," he said.
  • Problems extend to Russian-held regions: Electricity and water have also been temporarily cut off in the Russian-occupied city of Kherson in southern Ukraine, according to Ukrainian local officials and Russian-appointed local authorities. Russian-backed forces and Ukraine each blamed the other for attacks causing the outage. CNN cannot independently confirm or verify details of the claimed attack or who was behind it.
  • Iran's role in all of this: In his nightly address Sunday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said Russia intends to use Iranian missiles for possible attacks on Ukraine’s infrastructure, especially the country’s energy sector. Kyiv has accused Russia of using so-called "kamikaze drones" made by Tehran in its attacks on Ukrainian infrastructure in recent weeks. The Iranian government acknowledged for the first time Saturday that it had sent a limited number of drones to Russia in the months before the start of its invasion of Ukraine.
2:39 a.m. ET, November 7, 2022

Ukraine schedules further power outages Monday

From CNN's Olga Voitovych and Mick Krever in Kyiv

People shop at a supermarket during a power outage in Kyiv on October 27.
People shop at a supermarket during a power outage in Kyiv on October 27. (Yevhenii Zavhorodnii/Global Images Ukraine/Getty Images)

Ukraine’s state-energy company, Ukrenergo, warned Monday morning that the country would face further scheduled and unscheduled power cuts. 

“From 6:00 a.m. and until the end of the day, there will be scheduled power outages in Kyiv city, and Kyiv, Chernihiv, Cherkasy, Zhytomyr, Sumy, Kharkiv, Poltava regions,” Ukrenergo said on its Facebook and Telegram channels. 

“There will also be emergency outages in certain regions. They will be introduced by regional power distribution companies in case the deficit is bigger than planned. In case of emergency blackouts, electricity may be cut off earlier than planned and consumption restrictions may last longer.” 

Ukraine’s electricity infrastructure has been under severe strain since Russia began attacking power plants on October 10.

“The country's power grid is still unable to resume full operation after the terrorist attacks of Russia,” Ukrenergo said. “We have to introduce power outages in some regions to avoid overloading of high-voltage infrastructure.”
7:00 a.m. ET, November 7, 2022

Fires spread in Russian-held Donetsk after shelling

From CNN's Josh Pennington

Smoke rises near a local railway administration headquarters n Donetsk, Ukraine, on November 7.
Smoke rises near a local railway administration headquarters n Donetsk, Ukraine, on November 7. (Alexander Ermochenko/Reuters)

Several buildings were ablaze in Donetsk city early on Monday morning following Ukrainian artillery strikes on the area, currently under Russian occupation, according to authorities and social media.

According to the Russian-backed Joint Center for Control and Coordination, six rockets hit Donetsk's Voroshilovsky District at 3:13 a.m. local time.

Witnesses on social media reported a shortage of water as the large fire continued burning after the shelling.

Social media videos geolocated by CNN showed the Donetsk Railway Administration building among those on fire in the central part of the city.

No casualties have been reported yet.

1:25 a.m. ET, November 7, 2022

Kyiv mayor says it must be prepared for worst case scenario if city is left without water and electricity

From CNN’s Sahar Akbarzai and Josh Pennington 

A woman looks at generator that powers a cafe in Kyiv on November 05.
A woman looks at generator that powers a cafe in Kyiv on November 05. (Ed Ram/Getty Images)

The Ukrainian capital of Kyiv is preparing for worst-case scenarios in the event of further Russian attacks on Ukrainian infrastructure which could potentially leave the city without electricity or water, according to its mayor Vitali Klitschko. 

“Our enemies are doing everything to keep the city without heat, electricity, and water supply, and in general, they want us all to die. This is their task. And how well we'll hold out depends on how well we're prepared for different scenarios ... that's why we need to be prepared,” said Klitschko on Sunday.  

"This is not a war, this is terrorism, this is genocide,” the mayor said regarding Russian attacks on energy infrastructure.

The city’s mayor encouraged some residents to think about staying with family and friends outside of Kyiv if the city is left without electricity or water.

“If you have extended family — this is for if we consider the worst case, if we were left without electricity and water supply — or friends outside Kyiv, where there is autonomous water supply, an oven, heating, please keep in mind the possibility of staying there for a certain amount of time,” the mayor said.  

“His goal is for us to die, to freeze, or to make us flee our land so that he can have it. That's what the aggressor wants to achieve,” Klitschko said regarding Russian President Vladimir Putin. 

Some background: Russian forces have pounded Ukraine's critical infrastructure in recent weeks, severely damaging its electrical grid and forcing many towns and cities across the country to impose scheduled hours-long blackouts. 

Preparing for emergency: The city’s Director for the Department of Municipal Security, Roman Tkachuk, relayed fears later in the afternoon on Sunday that all possible action plans are being considered in the case of an emergency but there were no plans to evacuate the city, according to a statement from the Kyiv City Council. 

Tkachuk said each district within the city will have about 100 heating centers to operate in case of emergencies in the winter. These heating centers will be equipped with heat, lighting, toilets, canteens, places to rest, warm clothes, blankets and an ambulance crew will be on duty near such centers, the statement said.  

"The civil protection system must be ready for various scenarios, but this does not mean that we are now preparing for evacuation. To respond efficiently, we must have a plan for all possible scenarios," Tkachuk said.  

1:23 a.m. ET, November 7, 2022

Electricity and water temporarily cut off in Russian-occupied Kherson

From CNN's Olga Voitovych, Dennis Lapin and Chris Liakos

Electricity and water have been temporarily cut off in the Russian-occupied city of Kherson in southern Ukraine, according to Ukrainian local officials and Russian-appointed local authorities.

The Russian-backed Kherson region administration announced the outages on Telegram Sunday.

It added that “three reinforced concrete columns of high-voltage power lines were damaged" after what it claimed was “a terrorist attack organized by the Ukrainian side.”

The Russian-backed Kherson region administration said that “power and water supply will be restored throughout the Kherson region in the very near future,” asking citizens to remain calm.

CNN cannot independently confirm or verify details of the claimed attack or who was behind it. Russia and Ukraine are accusing each other regarding the incident.

What Ukrainian officials are saying: Yuriy Sobolevskyi, a local Ukrainian leader, confirmed roughly 10 settlements of the Kherson region were left without electricity and water, including the whole city.

“A high-voltage power line was damaged. The occupiers have already 'reported' about the attack. However, they did not specify that the attack was carried out by them. Eyewitness testimonies confirm this,” Sobolevskyi said in a Telegram post.

More context: The fighting in the Kherson region has escalated in recent weeks. Russian-backed authorities have started evacuating residents, evacuations the Ukrainian side calls “forced."

Last month, a resident described the situation in the city as tense, with people “emotionally exhausted,” the streets empty from mid-afternoon onwards and Russian soldiers often seen in civilian clothes.

1:23 a.m. ET, November 7, 2022

Zelensky claims Russia will use Iranian missiles for possible attacks on Ukraine’s infrastructure

From CNN's Mariya Knight

Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky says Russia intends to use Iranian missiles for possible attacks on Ukraine’s infrastructure, especially the country’s energy sector.

Already, more than 4.5 million residents are without power across Kyiv and six other regions because of Russian strikes, Zelensky said in his nightly address Sunday.

“We also understand that the terrorist state is concentrating forces and means for a possible repetition of mass attacks on our infrastructure. First of all, energy,” Zelensky said. “In particular, for this, Russia needs Iranian missiles,” the Ukrainian president said, adding Ukraine is “preparing to respond.” 

He also said that on Sunday, Russians “used Iranian attack drones again,” but he stopped short of providing any further details.

“The whole world will know that the Iranian regime helps Russia prolong this war,” Zelensky said.

“If it was not for the Iranian supply of weapons to the aggressor, we would be closer to peace now,” he continued. “And this means closer to a complete solution to the food crisis.” 

Some background: Iran is preparing to send approximately 1,000 additional weapons, including missiles and more attack drones, to Russia, officials from a Western country that closely monitors Iran’s weapons program told CNN.

The shipment is being closely monitored because it would be the first instance of Iran sending advanced precision guided missiles to Russia, which could give the Kremlin a substantial boost on the battlefield.

Iranian drones have played a significant role in the conflict since Russia launched its full-scale invasion of Ukraine in late February

1:22 a.m. ET, November 7, 2022

Iran acknowledges providing drones to Russia before Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine

From CNN's Adam Pourahmadi and Sophie Tanno

The Iranian government acknowledged for the first time Saturday that it had sent a limited number of drones to Russia in the months before the start of its invasion of Ukraine.

The statement by Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian comes after previous denials by Tehran that it had supplied Russia with weapons for use in Ukraine, saying it “has not and will not” do so. Amirabdollahian did not say if the drones that were supplied to Moscow were the type that carry explosives.

“Some western countries have accused Iran of helping the war in Ukraine by providing drones and missiles to Russia. The part regarding missiles is completely wrong. The part about drones is correct, we did provide a limited number of drones to Russia in the months before the start of the war in Ukraine,” Amirabdollahian told reporters in Tehran.

Self-detonating drones, also known as "suicide drones," have played a significant role in the conflict since Russia launched its invasion in late February. They are capable of circling for some time in an area identified as a potential target and striking only once an enemy asset is identified.

Some context: Russia has launched a series of drone attacks across Ukraine in recent weeks, striking vital civilian infrastructure and sowing terror in Ukrainian cities far from the frontlines of the war. Ukrainian officials said last week that they had shot down more than 300 Iranian drones.

Officials from a Western country that closely monitors Iran’s weapons program also told CNN that Iran is preparing to send more attack drones, along with surface-to-surface short-range ballistic missiles, to Russia to use in its war against Ukraine.

The last shipment of weapons from Iran to Russia included about 450 drones, officials said, which the Russians have already used to deadly effect in Ukraine.

Read CNN's full story here.