Zelensky warns of increased risk of ‘cruel’ Russian provocations


Russia could “do something particularly disgusting” and “cruel” next week in Ukraine, when the latter celebrates its Independence Day, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky warned on Saturday evening. “Russia might strive to do something particularly disgusting, particularly cruel,” Mr Zelensky said in his traditional address. “One of the key objectives of the enemy is to humiliate us”, to “sow despondency, fear and conflict”, but “we must be strong enough to resist any provocation” and “to make the occupiers pay for their terror,” he added.

Information to remember:

  • Volodymyr Zelensky has warned that Russia could ‘do something particularly disgusting’ and ‘cruel’ on August 24, the country’s Independence Day
  • Four civilians were killed and two others injured in Donetsk region, eastern Ukraine
  • Two civilians were injured in the Kharkiv region of central-eastern Ukraine after Russian shelling overnight
  • A senior Ukrainian security service official has been found dead at his home. An investigation has been opened to determine the cause of death but it could be a suicide.

Four civilians killed in Donetsk region

Ukraine celebrates its independence from the USSR in 1991 on August 24. This year, this date will also mark the six months of the Russian invasion which killed tens of thousands of people and caused massive destruction in this country. In this context, the governor of the Kharkiv region (center-east), has already announced on Saturday a long curfew planned from the evening of August 23 to the morning of August 25. “Let’s not allow any provocation to the enemy. Let’s be as vigilant as possible during our independence day,” Governor Oleg Synegoubov argued on Telegram.

After failing to take kyiv, the Russians concentrated their efforts in the industrial east and the agricultural south of Ukraine. The pro-kyiv governor of the Donetsk region (East) Pavlo Kyrylenko reported on Sunday that four civilians were killed and two others injured the day before by Russians in this territory. In the Kharkiv region (center-east), two civilians were injured in Russian bombardments during the night, for its part indicated the State service for emergency situations. The Odessa region (south) was targeted by five Russian Kalibr-type cruise missiles launched from the Black Sea, said the spokesman for the regional administration Serguiï Bratchouk. Two were shot down by anti-aircraft defense and three others hit a silo with no casualties, he added.

“The enemy is trying to continue its offensive in the Donetsk region” and has succeeded in occupying part of the locality Blagodatné in the Mykolaiv region (South), for its part declared the Ukrainian army in its morning report on Facebook . She also warned of the risk of Russian strikes from Belarus, an ally of Moscow.

Senior Ukrainian security service official found dead

The head of a regional branch of the Ukrainian security service (SBU) was found dead at his home in central Ukraine, the prosecutor’s office said on Sunday. Late Saturday evening, the wife of Oleksandr Nakonechny heard the sound of a shot in their apartment in Kropyvnytsky before discovering the body of her husband shot in one of the rooms, said the prosecution on Telegram. The police have opened an investigation to establish the cause of his death, added the prosecution without commenting on the theses examined by the investigators.

A local elected official Andriï Lavrous for his part affirmed on Telegram that the person in charge had killed himself by shooting himself in the head. Mr. Nakonechny had headed the SBU branch in the Kirovograd region since January 2021. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky sacked SBU chief Ivan Bakanov in July, accusing him of insufficient efforts in the fight against Moscow spies and collaborators which launched its invasion of Ukraine in February. Mr. Zelensky then announced a “review of executives” within the SBU, several senior officials have been dismissed in recent months.

Source: Europe1

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