Russia is strengthening its espionage units. The head of the Munich Security Conference calls for battle tanks for Ukraine. Emergency services have stopped searching for people buried after the high-rise attack in Dnipro. What happened today in the Ukraine war.
The head of the Munich Security Conference, Christoph Heusgen, is in favor of Germany supplying Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine. Many partners, such as Great Britain or Poland, want to supply battle tanks to Ukraine themselves and are in favor of Germany doing the same: “We have to move forward there. And we now have to deliver the Leopard 2 in the convoy as well,” says Heusgen.
Chancellor Scholz had “several times tried to get Putin to give in.” Now is the time to show toughness. “It’s the only language that Putin understands,” said Heusgen. And it is the only way to “return to normal relations in the long term.” Germany must do everything possible to help Ukraine in its self-defense.
Overall, Germany is doing “a great deal” in the area of humanitarian aid, in the area of economic support: “We could do more with regard to supporting Ukraine with armaments,” says Heusgen. “We have to see that we do this sustainably and that we also make our contribution over a longer period of time.”
After the devastating impact of a Russian missile on a high-rise building in the Ukrainian city of Dnipro last weekend, the emergency services have stopped searching for victims. Civil defense announced on Tuesday that 20 people were still missing. “Unfortunately, the chances of finding someone tend to zero,” said Mayor Borys Filatow. It is possible that some bodies were so disfigured by fire and collapsing parts of the house that they could hardly be found.
Since the attack on Saturday, 45 dead, including 6 children, have been recovered in the city in the central Ukrainian region of Dnepropetrovsk. About 80 people were injured. There are still 28 injured people in hospitals, many of whom are in critical condition, it said. More than 230 apartments in the nine-story high-rise were destroyed.
Overall, since the beginning of the war, more than 9,000 civilians have been killed, said the Ukrainian President’s chief of staff, Andryj Ermak, in Davos. Among them were 453 children.
According to Defense Minister-designate Boris Pistorius, Germany is “indirectly” involved in the war in Ukraine. “The Ministry of Defense is a major challenge even in civilian, in peacetime, and in times when the Federal Republic of Germany is involved in a war, indirectly, again especially,” said the SPD politician on Tuesday in Hanover, referring to his future task. “And that’s why I’m of course very aware of the responsibility and the great importance of this task,” he emphasized. “The Bundeswehr has to adapt to a new situation that arose with the Russian war of aggression against Ukraine,” he emphasized.
In the Russian-annexed Donetsk region of Ukraine, the influx of non-combat Russian spy personnel is increasing. “The main task of the newcomers is to strengthen counterintelligence,” reports Ukraine’s Defense Intelligence Service. They would be stationed at “temporary deployment points,” usually in large private homes or on the campus of industrial plants. The locations of the units of Chechen leader Roman Kadyrov were particularly affected, the news service continued.
After a wave of public outrage, the external adviser to the Ukrainian presidential office, Oleksiy Arestovych, resigned. “I want to show an example of civilized behavior,” the 47-year-old wrote on Facebook on Tuesday. The reason for the resignation was his statement in a live Internet broadcast on Sunday night. Arestovych named Ukrainian anti-aircraft defenses as a possible reason for the impact of a Russian missile on a residential building in the city of Dnipro.
After the statement, the 47-year-old was met with a wave of indignation. He was accused, among other things, of working for Russian propaganda. The Ukrainian Air Force also dismissed the possibility that it might be able to intercept Russian Ch-22 supersonic missiles. Previous official publications on this were not correct. Arestovych apologized for the statement to the bereaved on Tuesday night.
After a meeting with the German Economics Minister Robert Habeck, the Mayor of Kyiv, Vitali Klitschko, spoke of the “positive decisions” that had been made. Further help was discussed, including “the handing over of weapons,” Klitschko wrote on Telegram after the meeting in Davos. “There will be good news soon.” He does not give details.
According to civil rights activists, several people have been arrested in Moscow while trying to lay flowers in memory of at least 45 people who died in the Russian rocket attack on the Ukrainian city of Dnipro. The civil rights organization OVD-Info said there were four arrests in total in the center of the Russian capital on Tuesday evening. The small memorial was erected by unknown persons on Monday evening at the foot of a monument to the Ukrainian poet Lessja Ukrajinka in a park. They filed a black and white photo of the destroyed apartment building in Dnipro and flowers.
In the hours that followed, more and more people brought flowers – some in the blue and yellow colors of the Ukrainian flag. Cuddly toys were also laid down – in memory of the children among the dead. Several passers-by stopped and cried. Public anti-war actions have become very rare in Russia due to massive repression. For months there have been hardly any major protests against the invasion of the neighboring country, which President Vladimir Putin ordered almost eleven months ago.
After the US and Germany, the Netherlands is also considering providing Ukraine with a Patriot air defense system. “We intend to go along with what you are doing with Germany on the Patriot project,” Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said at a meeting with US President Joe Biden at the White House on Tuesday.
He also discussed the issue with Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) in the morning, Rutte added. Scholz also called Biden himself on Tuesday. The Federal Chancellor and the US President “exchanged views on the situation in Ukraine,” said government spokesman Steffen Hebestreit.
Russian President Vladimir Putin wants the termination of treaties with the Council of Europe to be anchored in law. This applies, for example, to the European Convention on Human Rights, the European Convention to Combat Terrorism and the European Social Charter. This emerges from the draft law that Putin brought to parliament on Tuesday. The farewell is considered a formality.
It was already known last week that the head of the Kremlin also wants to have the termination of Russia’s participation in the Council of Europe’s Criminal Law Convention on Combating Corruption enshrined in law. Russia was expelled from the Council of Europe months ago because of its war of aggression against Ukraine.
The BASF subsidiary Wintershall Dea is withdrawing from Russia – and causing its parent company to lose billions in 2022. The bottom line at BASF was a deficit of around 1.4 billion euros, as the Dax group surprisingly announced on Tuesday evening after the stock exchange closed in Ludwigshafen.
The main reason was write-downs on Wintershall Dea in the amount of 7.3 billion euros. The subsidiary complains about the factual expropriation of its holdings there in Russia. According to the information, she is planning a complete withdrawal from the country in compliance with the legal provisions. The share fell by 3.6 percent in after-hours trading on the Tradegate trading platform.
Russian President Vladimir Putin is said to have clearly instructed the new commander in chief of the Russian armed forces, Valery Gerasimov, to take Donbass by March. That’s what Andrii Yusov from the Ukrainian military intelligence service told the television channels Freedom TV and 24 Channel.
The time frame that Putin set for Gerasimov was “the taking of Donbass and the formation of a certain safe zone there as early as March,” the portal “Ukrainiska Pravda” quotes from the TV interview. According to Yusov, Putin has not given up on his plans to destroy Ukraine as a whole nation. He believes that the Kremlin wants to wage a long war.
Gerasimov was appointed chief of the general staff only in January. The US Institute for War Studies (ISW) does not expect that Gerasimov will meet Putin’s “unrealistic expectations” of a full conquest of Ukraine’s four annexed regions of Donetsk, Luhansk, Zaporizhia and Kherson.
After the attack on a residential building in the Ukrainian city of Dnipro that left at least 40 dead and 75 injured, a photo sparked sympathy and outrage on social media. It shows a yellow kitchen, apparently completely intact. Pot holders hang on the wall and there is a plate of fruit on the table. Even the chairs stand untouched where the wall used to be. Instead, a huge hole gapes around the room – the consequences of the rocket hit.
As the British “BBC” reports, it is said to be the apartment of the well-known boxing trainer Mykhail Korenovskijwar. According to media reports, the man died in the attack. His wife and two children only survived because they went for a walk shortly before the attack. A video has also surfaced online. It should show a children’s birthday party in the family’s still intact apartment.
Unknown people laid flowers at a memorial in Moscow after the devastating rocket hit. “In Moscow, people brought flowers and toys in memory of the dead of Dnipro,” the opposition Internet portal “Astra” reported on Monday. The monument in the center of the Russian capital commemorates the Ukrainian poet Lessja Ukrajinka. There was also a framed photo of the destroyed apartment building in Dnipro.
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has strongly condemned the rocket attack on a house in Dnipro. Attacks on civilians and civilian infrastructure must stop immediately and represent a breach of international law, a UN spokeswoman said.
In his video message, Ukrainian President Zelenskyy called for more arms support for Ukraine in response to the Russian missile attack on Dnipro. He awaits decisions on further arms deliveries from the World Economic Forum in Davos, which begins on Tuesday, and the Ukraine Contact Group conference in Ramstein.
Kremlin chief Vladimir Putin held a phone call with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, blaming the Ukrainian side for the recent intensification of fighting. The Kremlin announced on Monday after the phone call that it was counting on an intensification of the fighting “with the help of Western sponsors”. Kyiv is showing a lack of willingness to negotiate – for example with the rejection of a ceasefire ordered by Putin for the period of the Orthodox Christmas celebrations in early January.
Ukraine had dismissed the move from Moscow as hypocritical, and many international observers also spoke of Putin’s purely propaganda gesture. The shooting continued from both sides. Ukraine has repeatedly emphasized that it is willing to negotiate – but only if Russian soldiers return territory occupied in violation of international law.
At the suggestion of the Turkish side, Putin’s talks with Erdogan also dealt with further prisoner exchanges between Russia and Ukraine, the Kremlin said. The newspaper “Hürriyet” reported, citing the Turkish ombudsman Seref Malkoc, that the exchange involved around 800 Ukrainians and 200 Russians. Details on this were not known.
On Tuesday afternoon (3:00 p.m.), President Selenskyj will be talking to students at the European University Viadrina in Frankfurt (Oder) and the Humboldt University in Berlin – via the internet.
Poland’s President Andrzej Duda wants to make the delivery of Leopard main battle tanks to Ukraine an issue at the World Economic Forum in Davos. That was according to a report by the Polish news agency PAP on Monday from those around him. At the meeting in the Swiss Alps, Duda wanted to solicit support for the project to deliver Leopard tanks in the European network.
Also read: The Ukraine update of January 16th