NATO General Jens Stoltenberg has called on Germany and other allied countries to continue providing arms to Ukraine. “It may sound paradoxical, but military support for Ukraine is the fastest way to peace,” Norway told a German press agency earlier this year. The background is that Russian President Vladimir Putin must be convinced that his goal of conquering Ukraine will not be achieved. A peaceful negotiated settlement would ensure the survival of Ukraine as an independent democracy.
Stoltenberg also made it clear that he considers recent Ukrainian attacks on military targets in Russia to be completely legal. “Every country has the right to defend itself. Ukraine too,” he said. In the case of the Ukrainian attacks, one must also look at the context. These are massive Russian attacks on civilian infrastructure aimed at depriving Ukrainian citizens of water, heat and electricity during the winter.
When asked if he thought it was right to provide Ukraine with medium-range missiles, Stoltenberg said there was a constant dialogue between allies and Ukraine on specific systems. He also pointed out that NATO allies had already provided long-range weapons systems to Ukraine in the past. These include Himars missile launchers, long-range artillery and drones.
All Improvements in Live Ticker:
08:04 – Ukraine cracks down on drone attacks overnight
According to officials, Ukrainian air defenses repelled drone attacks in and around Kyiv and in the east of the country during the night. “Russia has again targeted our infrastructure,” Oleksiy Kuleba, the military governor of the Kiev region, said on his Telegram channel. According to him, the air defense shot down the drones. No damage was done.
The city administration in Kyiv also reported that the overnight attack was very mild. Five drones were shot down over the capital. The administration building was partially damaged and the windows of the residential building were damaged. No deaths or injuries reported.
02:46 am – Biden implements new budget plan with billions in funding for Ukraine
US President Joe Biden has signed the new annual budget. With his signature, Biden implemented a total budget of $1.7 trillion.
The US President, who is currently vacationing in Saint Croix, US Virgin Islands, tweeted a photo showing him signing the law. Congress passed a new budget last week. This prevented the budget lockdown known as the shutdown. Half of the new budget — $858 billion — is earmarked for defense.
About $45 billion (about €42 billion) is available for economic and military support for Ukraine. In May, Congress passed a $40 billion aid package for the country hit by Russia.
01:49 – Britain sends metal detectors and defusing equipment to Ukraine
Britain has provided Ukraine with more than 1,000 metal detectors and 100 bomb disposal devices. “Russia’s use of landmines and attacks on civilian infrastructure underline the shocking ferocity of Putin’s invasion,” British Defense Secretary Ben Wallace said in a statement. Made by German company Vallon, the metal detectors and equipment help Ukraine “safely destroy land and buildings while reclaiming their rightful territory,” the defense ministry said.
00:38 – Zelenskyy: Nationwide power outage after Russian missile attack
According to Kiev, massive Russian rocket attacks on Ukraine’s energy infrastructure led to blackouts in large parts of the country. “There will be a power outage in most parts of Ukraine tonight,” Volodymyr Zelenskyy said in a video address. The situation is “particularly difficult” in the Kyiv region, the capital, the western part of Lviv, and the Odesa and Cherson regions in the south of the country.
With each of these missile strikes, Russia “drives itself deeper into a dead end,” Zelensky said. “They have fewer and fewer rockets.” Three people were killed in Thursday’s rocket attacks, according to Interior Minister Denis Monastirsky. Six people, including a child, were injured.
00:00 – 15,000 people have been missing since the start of the war in Ukraine
Thousands of soldiers and civilians have disappeared since the start of the war in Ukraine, according to Alona Verbitska, adviser to the Ukrainian president. “Russia has currently confirmed 3,392 Ukrainian prisoners of war, but Ukraine currently has 15,000 missing people, including many civilians,” Verbitzka told “RedaktionsNetzwerk Deutschland” (RND), according to a preliminary report.
The fate of these people is completely uncertain, says Verbitska, who works as the ombudswoman for the rights of Ukrainian veterans. “We don’t know what happened to them. Are they also in Russian captivity, have they been kidnapped from Russian occupied territories or have they been killed long ago?
This uncertainty is terrible, especially for relatives whose work I take care of,” explains Verbitska, who is also an adviser to President Volodymyr Zelensky and helps search for missing persons.
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