Our live coverage of Russia's war in Ukraine has moved here.
The Ukrainian city of Dnipro was the target of a Russian rocket attack Monday night, according to Valentyn Reznichenko, the head of the Dnipropetrovsk regional military administration.
"Several rockets were launched at the city tonight. They were targeting a private enterprise. Manufacturing facilities were destroyed. A fire broke out," Reznichenko posted on Telegram.
He did not disclose the identity of the enterprise.
Some background: Dnipro is frequently targeted by Russian missiles and other longer-range weapons. On Saturday, Reznichenko said at least 13 people were wounded in a Russian rocket attack.
More than half of the damaged heating facilities in Ukraine have been restored, according to the YASNO energy company, which supplies electricity and natural gas.
The company's CEO said "316 heat supply facilities have already been restored, which is 53.3% of the total number of affected facilities."
"Despite the constant shelling, Ukraine has started the heating season - 99.7% of boiler houses have started functioning, 99.6% of residential buildings, 97.9% of kindergartens, 98.9% of schools and 99.9% of healthcare facilities have been provided with heating," YASNO's CEO, Sergey Kovalenko, said.
"Special efforts are now being made to restore the operation of heat generating enterprises in the liberated territories of Kharkiv and Kherson regions, where the situation with access to communications remains difficult," he added.
The Biden administration has approved a potential $323 million arms sale to Finland, which shares a border with Russia.
The administration informed Congress on Monday of its approval of the possible sale of tactical missiles and Joint Stand Off Weapons, the US State Department said in a notice.
The approval of the proposed sale comes as Finland seeks to join NATO.
“This proposed sale will support the foreign policy and national security of the United States by improving the security of a trusted partner, which is an important force for political stability and economic progress in Europe,” the notice said. “Is vital to the U.S. national interest to assist Finland in developing and maintaining a strong and ready self-defense capability.”
“The proposed sale will improve Finland’s air-to-air and air-to-surface weapons capabilities and will positively impact U.S. relations with countries in the Nordic region,” the notice continued. “Finland intends to use these defense articles and services for its fighter aircraft fleet. Finland will have no difficulty absorbing this equipment into its armed forces.”
The Ukrainian capital of Kyiv is experiencing yet another spate of emergency power restrictions in addition to already scheduled blackouts.
The sustained power outages come as Ukraine scrambles to find equipment to repair power infrastructure damaged and destroyed by Russian missile attacks. Freezing temperatures and less daylight are compounding the hardship for people.
Here are the latest developments:
- UN calls humanitarian situation in southern Ukraine "critical" as people struggle without power and heat: The United Nations says that the situation in the southern Ukrainian cities of Mykolaiv and Kherson remains "dire" and "critical." Nearly a quarter of a million people in Mykolaiv alone face a lack of heat, water and power. UN spokesperson Stéphane Dujarric said that Humanitarian Coordinator Denise Brown visited the two southern cities over the weekend. Brown reported that people fleeing Kherson are going to Mykolaiv, according to Dujarric. Donors have provided $3.1 billion in humanitarian aid through the UN this year, but Dujarric said continued funding is important to "maintain the moment or the response," especially during winter months.
- Ukraine’s electricity operator says it is running at a 27% deficit: Ukraine’s electricity operator Ukrenergo is running at a 27% deficit, the company said on Monday. Ukrenergo said in a statement on Telegram that it had implemented a series of “emergency shutdowns” across the country at “several power plants”. Given deteriorating weather conditions, power usage is on the rise, it added, saying that it hoped the power deficit would reduce as “units return to operation.” Seven waves of Russian missiles contributed to the recent outages, it claimed. CNN is unable to independently verify the number of missile waves.
- Kherson civilians continue to leave as Russian shelling strikes residential areas of city: Civilians continue to leave the recently liberated Ukrainian city of Kherson amid persistent shelling of residential areas by Russian forces stationed on the east bank of the Dnipro river. Much of the city remains without power and water. Yaroslav Yanushevych, head of the Kherson region military administration, said the Kherson district had been hit 30 times Sunday.
The United Nations says that the situation in the southern Ukrainian cities of Mykolaiv and Kherson remains "dire" and "critical." Nearly a quarter of a million people in Mykolaiv alone face a lack of heat, water and power.
UN spokesperson Stéphane Dujarric said that Humanitarian Coordinator Denise Brown visited the two southern cities over the weekend. Brown reported that people fleeing Kherson are going to Mykolaiv, according to Dujarric.
"Some heating points have already been established in Mykolaiv to help people who cannot heat their homes. Aid workers are providing supplies and generators to make these places functional," Dujarric said.
In Kherson, "We expect that, with support of the authorities, we will be able to cover the basic needs of people who have stayed in the city, if we are able to sustain the same level of aid sent over the past two weeks."
"The situation with water, heating and electricity, however, remains dire, although the electricity supply is gradually being restored," the spokesman added.
Donors have provided $3.1 billion in humanitarian aid through the UN this year, but Dujarric said continued funding is important to "maintain the moment or the response," especially during winter months.
"We continue to be concerned about the plight of civilians in Ukraine especially as winter sets in. We are working to support people with services and supplies to make sure they can be protected and keep warm during these harsh months," Dujarric said.
French President Emmanuel Macron is expected to discuss Russia's war in Ukraine, among other topics, during his upcoming state visit to the United States, according to a French official.
Macron is slated to arrive in Washington, DC, on Tuesday night. On Wednesday morning, he’ll have a number of working sessions focused on space, biodiversity, climate and nuclear energy.
Political discussions, the official said, will begin at the White House Thursday morning following a welcoming ceremony. The private discussions will be followed by a news conference with Macron and US President Joe Biden.
Macron will subsequently attend a state lunch at the US State Department hosted by Vice President Kamala Harris and Secretary of State Antony Blinken, the official said. He’ll later meet with a bicameral, bipartisan group of US lawmakers at the invitation of the Speaker of the House.
French ministers and parliament members are also expected to be part of Macron’s delegation traveling to the US for the state visit.
The official said Macron’s visit to the US comes at a moment of the war in Ukraine when “it is important to confirm the incredibly close cooperation we've had since the very beginning of this war of the brutal invasion by Russia, and even before, preparing for such a scenario.”
“We want to adapt our support for Ukraine in this moment and France will organize together with Ukraine,” they added, saying it was an important moment to reaffirm and adapt and increase support for Ukraine and face the global challenges which are interconnected and worsened by the war in Ukraine.
Strategic defense, energy and space are “at the core of the bilateral partnership side" of Macron's state visit in Washington, the official said.
Intense fighting continues around the city of Bakhmut in the eastern Donetsk region, according to both Russian and Ukrainian accounts.
The city has become an important target for Russian forces, which have had no success in recent months in winning territory in eastern Ukraine and have been forced to withdraw from many areas. Social media video over recent days has illustrated the immense destruction in Bakhmut, where thousands of people still live, without power and piped water.
Denis Pushilin, the Russian-appointed leader of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic, said on Monday that Russian forces were now close to encircling Bakhmut.
“The situation in Bakhmut remains difficult, but our units, in particular the Wagner group unit, are definitely moving forward," Pushilin said on Russian television.
Wagner is a private military contractor whose fighters have played a significant role in the fighting in Donetsk and Luhansk.
"There is also success in the vicinity of Bakhmut. The situation of the operational encirclement is quite close,” Pushilin claimed.
What Ukraine is saying: Ukrainians have acknowledged Russian offensives in the area but deny losing any ground.
The Ukrainian military's General Staff said Monday that "the enemy continues to focus its main efforts on conducting offensive operations," listing about half-a-dozen settlements in the Bakhmut area.
Serhii Cherevatyi, spokesperson for the military in the east, said on Ukrainian television Monday that "Bakhmut remains the epicenter of the main battle for Ukraine. The enemy acts most aggressively in this direction. He conducts attacks and fire strikes. On average, the enemy inflicts about 180-200 artillery strikes per day."
The city of Mykolaiv in southern Ukraine suffered another strike to its water supply, according to mayor Oleksandr Sienkievych.
Sienkievych said that a pumping station in neighboring Kherson had been damaged — and the city was now reliant on non-potable water "for an indefinite period of time."
The strike is part of a Russian campaign to attack Ukrainian infrastructure providing water, power and heat as winter sets in.
"We were all waiting for the de-occupation of Kherson and other temporarily occupied territories. After that, the water supply system was repaired promptly, literally in a week," Sienkievych said.
He said repair work continued on networks that were destroyed by salt water.
"As soon as the security situation allows, we will promptly restore the pumping station and return drinking water to Mykolaiv city," the mayor said.