Ukraine and Russia: What you need to know right now

Firefighters work at a site of a thermal power plant damaged by a Russian missile strike, amid Russia’s attack on Ukraine, in Kharkiv, Ukraine September 11, 2022. Press service of the State Emergency Service of Ukraine/Handout via REUTERS

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Sept 12 (Reuters) – Ukrainian forces swept deeper into territory seized from fleeing Russian troops on Monday, as joyful residents returned to former frontline villages and Moscow grappled with the consequences of the collapse of its occupation forces in northeastern Ukraine. read more

FIGHTING

* Ukrainian forces have advanced north from Kharkiv to within 50 km (30 miles) of the border with Russia and are also pressing to the south and east in the same region, Ukrainian chief commander General Valeriy Zaluzhnyi said.

* Zaluzhnyi said Ukraine had retaken more than 3,000 sq km (1,160 sq miles) this month.

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* Ukraine’s general staff said its forces had recaptured more than 20 towns and villages in just the past day.

*At least 1,000 people have been killed in the last six months in fighting in the city of Izium but the real figure is probably much higher, an official said, two days after Kyiv’s forces recaptured the major supply hub.

* Britain’s defense ministry said Russia had probably ordered the withdrawal of its troops from the entire occupied Kharkiv region west of the Oskil River. read more (https://bit.ly/3xfp2lf)

* The Kremlin said it saw no prospect of peace talks and that what it calls the special military operation in Ukraine would achieve its goals.

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* Russian nationalists called angrily for immediate changes by President Vladimir Putin to ensure ultimate victory in the Ukraine war, after Moscow was forced to abandon Izium. read more

* Commentators on Russian state television have been forced to go off script by Ukrainian forces’ swift advance in the country’s Kharkiv region and Moscow’s rapid retreat. read more

* Faced with one of its worst defeats in nearly seven months of war, the Kremlin insisted it would achieve its military goals and President Vladimir Putin maintained an air of business as usual as he chaired a meeting on the economy. read more

* Reuters could not independently verify the battlefield reports.

NUCLEAR PLANT

* Operations at the Russian-held Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant have been fully stopped as a safety measure, its state operator said. The move followed restoration of the backup power line allowing the plant to be connected to Ukraine’s electricity grid. read more

* The IAEA nuclear watchdog confirmed the restoration, allowing the plant to draw power from the grid to cool its reactors.

* The presidents of Russia and France held talks about plant safety, with Putin blaming Ukrainian forces, while Emmanuel Macron pointed the finger at Russian troops. read more

* Mykhailo Podolyak, an adviser to Ukraine’s president, said Russian attacks had hit Kharkiv’s CHPP-5 electricity station, one of the country’s largest.

* Ukraine and Russia are interested in the UN atomic watchdog’s proposal that a protection zone be created around the Russian-held Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant, the watchdog’s chief Rafael Grossi said, describing it as a ceasefire. read more

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DIPLOMACY, TRADE

* Indonesian President Joko Widodo is considering joining India and China in buying Russian oil to offset the growing pressure of rising energy costs, the Financial Times said. read more

* The International Monetary Fund is looking for ways to provide emergency funding to countries facing war-induced food price shocks, sources told Reuters. read more

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Compiled by Lincoln Feast and Shri Navaratnam; Editing by Clarence Fernandez and Frank Jack Daniel

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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