Unusual words: Yevgeny Prigozhin praises the Ukrainian President. Iran wants to supply more arms to Russia. A Russian oligarch renounces his citizenship. All current voices and developments on the Ukraine war can be found in the ticker.
More on the course of the war in Ukraine
08:38: The head of the mercenary group “Wagner Group”, Yevgeny Prigozhin, praised the President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy in a message from the press service of his company “Concord” in the social network VKontakte. In two posts he wrote: “Zelenskyj, although he is the president of a country that is currently hostile to the Russian Federation, he is nevertheless a strict, confident, pragmatic, handsome guy.”
“To become stronger, to win, one must treat the enemy with respect. You must not underestimate him. Always look for flaws in yourself and see what good and important can be learned from the enemy’s experience.” What is behind the statements is unclear.
5:39 a.m .: The new Swedish Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson has shown himself open to the stationing of nuclear weapons in his country in the event of Sweden’s admission to NATO. “You will get exactly the same answer from me as from the Finnish prime minister,” Kristersson said at a press conference with his Finnish counterpart Sanna Marin. When asked whether Finland or Sweden would accept nuclear weapons on their soil, she had previously replied: “We have decided that we do not want to close any doors on the future.”
04:15: Ukrainian military intelligence believes Iran plans to send more than 200 new combat drones to Russian forces, including Iran’s new combat drone, the Arash-2. The intelligence service said in a post on Telegram that, according to its findings, the unmanned aerial vehicles “will be delivered to the port of Astrakhan via the Caspian Sea”. The drones would be shipped in a disassembled state and then upon arrival on Russian territory “assembled, repainted and with Russian markings.” The information is not independently verified, but is similar to findings by American broadcaster CNN. A source from a Western country told CNN that Iran is preparing a large shipment of drones and ballistic missiles to Russia.
4:10 a.m .: British ex-Prime Minister Boris Johnson does not believe that Russian President Vladimir Putin will use nuclear weapons in the conflict with Ukraine. Johnson said so in an interview with Sky News. “I don’t think he will do that, he would be crazy to do that.”
Wednesday, November 02, 03:01: Turkey says it is in contact with Russia and Ukraine to address both countries’ concerns about the suspension of the grain deal, Defense Minister Hulusi Akar said on Tuesday.
Akar said he was in talks with Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, adding: “We are looking at how we can resume and extend the grain deal.” It should be in the interests of all parties to keep the deal in place, he said . The Turkish minister explained that under the agreement, Turkey exported more than ten million tons of Ukrainian grain to the world.
6:37 p.m .: After Russian rocket attacks on Ukraine’s energy infrastructure, there were power supply restrictions in the capital Kyiv and six other regions. The electricity will be switched off for customers at different times, said the energy supplier Ukrenerho on Tuesday in Kyiv. The regions of Chernihiv, Cherkasy, Zhytomyr, Sumy, Kharkiv and Poltava are also affected.
Ukraine accuses Russia of “energy terrorism” designed to plunge people into darkness, cold and fear. Kremlin boss Vladimir Putin wants to drive people into the EU in order to destabilize the situation there with a large number of refugees, according to Kyiv.
At a meeting with EU Energy Commissioner Kadri Simson on Tuesday, Ukrainian President Zelenskyy said that up to 40 percent of the energy infrastructure had now been destroyed by Russian attacks.
5:27 p.m.: Russian President Vladimir Putin has demanded “real guarantees” from Kyiv for compliance with the agreement on Ukrainian grain exports. The Kremlin announced on Tuesday that Putin had made this demand in a telephone call with Turkish President Recep Tayyip. Accordingly, the Russian head of state considers “real guarantees” from Kyiv to be “necessary” in order to “strictly comply with the Istanbul agreements on grain exports”.
In particular, the “humanitarian corridor should not be used for military purposes,” Putin demanded. According to the Kremlin statement, the resumption of work under the grain agreement could only be considered after Kyiv had given the required guarantees.
After a drone attack on its Black Sea fleet on the annexed peninsula of Crimea, Russia suspended its participation in the Ukrainian grain export agreement on Saturday. According to the Russian military, the attack, which Moscow blames on Ukraine with the participation of British specialists, was carried out in part from the shipping corridor used for grain transport. According to Moscow, the drone attacks also targeted ships that were used to protect the grain convoys.
Ukraine accused Moscow of suspending the agreement under “false pretenses”. London denied any involvement in the attack in Crimea.
The deal, signed in July under the auspices of the United Nations and Turkey, had enabled the export of millions of tons of grain that had been stuck in Ukrainian ports since the Russian offensive began in late February. Despite Moscow’s suspension of the contract, some cargo ships were able to leave Ukrainian ports.
4:44 p.m.: Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov continues to mobilize. The so-called “bloodhound Putin” announced on the radio station Svoboda that he would continue to conscript soldiers for the Ukraine war. Residents of the Chechen Republic would continue to receive subpoenas. He called on the citizens to serve their own countrymen and to fight with the Chechens.
Earlier on Friday, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu announced that the goal of partial mobilization had been achieved.
3:21 p.m .: According to military expert Carlo Masala, the Russian airstrikes against the civilian population could trigger a new flight from Ukraine. “It will be extremely difficult if help does not come from outside,” said the politics professor at the Bundeswehr University in Munich in a “stern” podcast. The goal of Russian war tactics is to worsen the living conditions of the people and thus to demoralize the civilian population. This could definitely succeed. As a result, “more Ukrainians could make their way to Europe again”.
Ukraine is still able to maintain the defense by Western air defense technology. The question is for how long. It is also unclear whether the Russian side has enough material to continue the terrorist attacks with this intensity: “That is the big unknown,” said the military expert.
1:53 p.m .: According to Western authorities, Iran is preparing new arms deliveries to Russia for the fight in Ukraine. Iran plans to send about 1,000 additional weapons, including short-range precision guided missiles and more attack drones, an official from a Western country that closely monitors Iran’s weapons program told US news channel CNN. It would be the first time Iran has sent missiles, which “could give the Kremlin a significant advantage on the battlefield,” the report said.
Officials would expect shipments to arrive before the end of the year. The latest delivery from Iran included 450 drones, which Russia used in various airstrikes against Ukraine. The small and cheap kamikaze drones have enormous clout
1:48 p.m .: According to the United Nations, three other grain carriers left Ukrainian ports on Tuesday. This is happening as part of the grain delivery agreement, said the UN-led coordination center in Istanbul. The Russian delegation had been informed, it said.
07:41: The Russian banker and entrepreneur Oleg Tinkov has given up his Russian citizenship because of Moscow’s war of aggression in Ukraine. He made this decision because he “couldn’t and didn’t want to be associated with a fascist country” that “started a war with its peaceful neighbor” and is killing innocent people every day, Tinkow wrote on Instagram on Monday. He shared an image of a certificate confirming the “end” of his Russian citizenship.
He hopes more prominent Russian businessmen will follow him, Tinkov wrote, “so that [President Vladimir] Putin’s regime and economy can be weakened and he can eventually be defeated.” He “hates Putin’s Russia” but “loves all Russians who are clearly against this crazy war”.
The dazzling billionaire and founder of the online bank Tinkoff is considered one of the best-known Russian entrepreneurs. The bank is one of Russia’s largest lenders and has around 20 million customers. In 2020, Tinkow retired from his post as CEO.
Tinkov had previously sharply criticized the Russian offensive in Ukraine, calling it a “crazy war”. He called on the West to end the “massacre”. Shortly after the start of the Ukraine war, the entrepreneur was hit by British sanctions.
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