British intelligence services believe that troops from Kiev are making some headway in a suspected Ukrainian offensive in the south. Meanwhile, experts from the IAEA are on their way to the contested Ukrainian nuclear power plant Zaporizhia - and are announcing their permanent presence. And Russia is once again turning off the gas supply to Germany - allegedly for maintenance purposes. The 189th day of the war at a glance:
According to London, Ukrainians are pushing back some Russian troops
According to British intelligence services, the Ukrainian armed forces in the south of their country have pushed back the Russian attackers to some extent. Since Monday there have been attacks on Russian units on several axes, which has partially shifted the southern front line, according to a short report by the British Ministry of Defence.
Ukrainian regional authority speaks of success in the south
A Ukrainian regional authority also sees successes by the Ukrainian military in Russian-occupied areas near the city of Cherson. The same applies to the cities of Beryslav and Kakhovka, Deputy Head of the Kherson Regional Council, Yurik Sobolevskyi, told Ukrainian television. He didn't want to give details. Russian sources also wrote that the troops loyal to Moscow had come under heavy pressure in some sections. Since the beginning of the offensive, the Ukrainian leadership has not released any information about its course.
Moscow: Heavy losses for Ukrainians
Moscow meanwhile reported heavy losses of the Ukrainians. More than 1,700 Ukrainian soldiers have already been killed, the Defense Ministry said in Moscow. In addition, according to army spokesman Igor Konashenkov, Russian troops destroyed 63 tanks, 48 armored vehicles and 4 fighter planes. This information could not be independently verified. Kyiv's attempt to resume the offensive in southern Ukraine between Mykolayiv and Kryvyi Rih and in other directions failed, Konashenkov said.
IAEA plans "permanent presence" in nuclear power plant
The 14-strong team of experts from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) arrived in the southern Ukrainian city of Zaporizhia on their way to inspect the contested Ukrainian nuclear power plant (NPP). The IAEA team will be given access to the nuclear power plant occupied by the Russian army on Thursday, said IAEA chief Rafael Grossi. According to the IAEA, it intends to set up a "permanent presence" at the Ukrainian Zaporizhia nuclear power plant. Russia was open to a permanent nuclear expert mission. First of all, however, the first results of the stay should be awaited, said Deputy Foreign Minister Andrei Rudenko.
New shelling of Zaporizhia NPP reported
Shortly before the arrival of the IAEA experts, the nuclear power plant was shot at again, according to the Russian occupation administration. The representative of the Russian occupying forces, Vladimir Rogov, said on Telegram that there were more than 60 hits by drone attacks and artillery shelling on the power plant site and in the surrounding area. There were no victims. The frequent shelling had triggered international concerns about a nuclear catastrophe. Kyiv and Moscow blame each other.
Greenpeace dampens expectations of IAEA inspection
EU suspends visa deal with Moscow
The suspension of the visa agreement is intended to enable EU member states to easily impose entry restrictions for Russians and increase costs and effort for applicants. At a meeting of foreign ministers in Prague, EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said the suspension of the agreement would significantly reduce the number of newly issued visas. According to Federal Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock, travelers from Russia could wait months for a visa in the future. At the same time, it will still be possible to allow students and journalists to enter the country. It must be prevented that people, out of frustration about Western sanctions, turn against the EU rather than against their own president.
Germany promotes eighth EU sanctions package against Russia
Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock said on the sidelines of an EU meeting in the Czech capital of Prague that the federal government had made proposals for further sanctions. The Green politician did not give any details. In particular, the federal government is likely to push for the introduction of an international upper price limit for Russian oil. In this way, Russia could be forced to sell oil to large buyers such as India at a significantly lower price in the future. The hope is that this will ease the markets. In addition, Russia should no longer benefit from rising oil prices and thus fill its war chest.
Baerbock wants new EU guidelines for dealing with Russia
Since there will be no going back to the time before the Russian attack on February 24, a "strategic reorientation" of Russia policy is necessary, said the Foreign Minister. Four points are central. These include strengthening one's own defenses, supporting opponents of the Russian regime, supporting Ukraine and working with global partners to defend international law. According to Baerbock, she worked out the proposal together with her French colleague Catherine Colonna.
Gazprom clamps Baltic Sea pipeline for three days
As announced, the gas supply via the Baltic Sea pipeline Nord Stream 1 was stopped early in the morning. The state-owned company Gazprom had announced that deliveries via the last most important route to Germany for Russian gas would be temporarily suspended due to maintenance work. Deliveries are expected to resume early Saturday morning. The Federal Government and the Federal Network Agency doubt the stated technical reasons. Gas supply through Nord Stream 1 had already been suspended for days in July - at that time, however, due to annual maintenance work that had been announced for a long time.
EU hits gas storage target two months ahead of schedule
According to data from European gas storage operators, European reserves were 80.1 percent full on Wednesday. The German gas storage facilities clearly exceeded the mark and, according to the data on Wednesday, were almost 84 percent full. Because of the Russian war against Ukraine, the European Union had passed a new law, according to which the reservoirs must be 80 percent full by November 1st this year. The aim is to be better prepared in the event of a total failure of Russian gas supplies. In Germany, storage tanks should be at least 85 percent full on October 1st and at least 95 percent full on November 1st. The amount of gas stored at a level of 95 percent corresponds approximately to the nationwide consumption of the two months of January and February 2022.
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