Russian invasion: War against Ukraine: That's the situation

After the end of the agreement on the export of Ukrainian grain, Russia wants to treat certain ships in parts of the Black Sea as possible adversaries.

Russian invasion: War against Ukraine: That's the situation

After the end of the agreement on the export of Ukrainian grain, Russia wants to treat certain ships in parts of the Black Sea as possible adversaries. As of Thursday midnight (Wednesday, 11:00 p.m. CEST), ships heading for Ukrainian ports would be classified as "potential carriers of military cargo," the Defense Ministry said in Moscow.

A warning to shipping had been issued in connection with the end of the Black Sea Initiative. Accordingly, areas of the north-west and south-east of the international waters of the Black Sea have been classified as dangerous for shipping.

Under great international criticism, the Kremlin did not extend the grain agreement on Monday after about a year. As a reason he cited demands that had allegedly not been met. As a result, the security guarantees for the safe transport of agricultural goods from three Ukrainian Black Sea ports were terminated.

Andriy Yermak, head of the President's Office in Kiev, said about this and the attacks on Odessa: "The Russian terror near Odessa proves once again: They need hunger and problems in the countries of the Global South. They want to create a refugee crisis for the West."

Attacks on Odessa

With dozens of missiles and drones, Russian troops attacked the southern Ukrainian metropolis of Odessa for the second night in a row. It was the worst attack since the war began 17 months ago, Mayor Hennady Trukhanov wrote on Facebook. Many Ukrainian agricultural exports went through the Black Sea port as part of the canceled grain agreement. President Volodymyr Zelenskyj complained that Russia "deliberately" aimed at port facilities and grain stores.

According to the authorities, several buildings were damaged by explosions during the Russian attacks and at least six people were injured. According to the southern command of the Ukrainian armed forces, among other things, port facilities with a grain and an edible oil terminal were hit.

The Ukrainian Air Force announced that the Russian army used more than 31 missiles of different types as of Wednesday morning. A little more than half could not be intercepted. Of the 32 Russian combat drones deployed, 23 were shot down. There were also reports of intercepted flying objects from the areas of Kiev, Mykolaiv and Sumy.

In Moscow, the Ministry of Defense confirmed the new attacks on Odessa - from planes and warships. Ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov, however, claimed that in the city area objects of military industry, fuel plants and ammunition depots were under fire.

Odessa was already the main target of the Russian attacks on Tuesday night. This was specifically described by the Ministry of Defense in Moscow as a reaction to the damage to the 19-kilometer Crimean Bridge the day before.

Large quantities of ammunition were blown up for many hours at a Russian military base on the Black Sea peninsula of Crimea annexed by Moscow. According to the authorities, around 2,200 people were brought to safety from four villages. Ukraine has repeatedly attacked Russian military targets in Crimea, but without a clear commitment. Kiev wants to take back the peninsula that Russia annexed in 2014 and is now using as a staging area for the war of aggression.

Putin is not coming to the Brics summit in South Africa

Kremlin chief Vladimir Putin will not appear on the big stage at the end of August: he will not travel to the summit of the Brics countries in South Africa, as the government there announced.

The background is that South Africa should have arrested Putin because of an international arrest warrant from The Hague. The International Criminal Court there accuses the 70-year-old of war crimes.

The summit of emerging Brics countries Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa will take place in Johannesburg on August 22-24. But Putin will be there via video. "It will be a full participation," Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said, according to the Russian news agency Interfax. Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov will take the place of Putin.

FDP defense expert: "Open the door to peace a crack"

The FDP defense expert Marie-Agnes Strack-Zimmermann sees the Russian President Putin "permanently weakened" by the uprising of the Wagner group of mercenaries. From the point of view of the chairmen of the Bundestag Defense Committee, this increases the chance of an end to the war of aggression. "My personal assessment is: for the first time, the door to peace is opening a little," she told the "Stern".

Red Cross Federation condemns Belarus Red Cross action

The umbrella organization of the Red Cross Societies has distanced itself from the Red Cross Society of authoritarian Belarus. Its boss Dmitry Shevtsov recently visited a Russian-occupied region in eastern Ukraine and admitted that the Belarusian Red Cross had brought Ukrainian children from there to Belarus. The ex-Soviet republic of Belarus is a close ally of Russia in the war of aggression against Ukraine.

"Such actions risk undermining confidence in our work to help those in need," the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) said in a statement. "It is vitally important that all components of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement maintain their independence from governments and arms carriers."

In a television interview, Shevtsov had presented the taking away of Ukrainian children as an alleged vacation. "We were, are and will be involved in that," he said. Ukraine sees his statements as evidence that Belarus is involved in Russian deportations of Ukrainian children. Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba therefore called on the International Criminal Court to issue an arrest warrant against Shevtsov.

The court in The Hague has already issued such an arrest warrant for the kidnapping of Ukrainian children against Russian President Vladimir Putin. According to international estimates, the accommodation of kidnapped children in supposed "recreational facilities" is part of the systematic program of their re-education and forced adoption that Moscow is pursuing. Belarusian opposition figures assume that more than 2,000 Ukrainian children may have been brought to Belarus under force since the beginning of the war.