Ukraine Daily Summary - Monday, October 17

Russia attacks Kyiv with kamikaze drones early on Oct. 17 -- Fierce fighting continues in Donbas, including against Russian prisoners -- Russia increases attacks on locals in occupied Kherson Oblast, steals property -- Iran plans to send ballistic missiles, drones to Russia -- and more

Ukraine Daily

Monday, October 17

Russia’s war against Ukraine


A Ukrainian soldier stands as a 2S1 Gvozdika self-propelled howitzer fires a shell on the front line in Donetsk Oblast on Oct. 10, 2022. (Photo by Anatolii Stepanov/AFP via Getty Images)

Russia attacks Kyiv with kamikaze drones early on Oct. 17. As a result of the attack, a fire broke out in a non-residential building in the Shevchenkivskyi district, Kyiv Mayor Vitalii Klitschko reported on Telegram. Several residential buildings were damaged, Klitschko added. There is no information about casualties at the moment.

Governor: Russian forces attack Sumy Oblast, casualties reported. Sumy Oblast Governor Dmytro Zhyvytskyi reported that Russian forces struck critical infrastructure facilities in Romenskyi District after 5 a.m. on Oct. 17. Zhyvytskyi said there are casualties, but did not provide exact numbers. He said further details will be reported later.

Zelensky: Fierce fighting continues in Donbas, including against Russian prisoners. In a video address on Oct. 16, President Volodymyr Zelensky said that the heaviest fighting continues in two cities in Donetsk Oblast, Soledar and Bakhmut, where the Ukrainian military is holding off Russians, including 2,000 prisoners, who were sent to war against Ukraine and promised amnesty.

General Staff: Russia increases attacks on locals in occupied Kherson Oblast, steals property. Russian troops are stealing Ukrainian property, including that of banks and the pension fund. Russians are also intensifying attacks on Ukrainians living in the occupied parts of Kherson Oblast, which could include invasively checking their personal belongings and breaking into houses.

Defense Ministry: Russia losing soldiers at ratio of 1 to 6.5 to Ukrainian losses on southern front. The figure was given by Deputy Defense Minister Hanna Maliar, citing Andrii Kovalchuk, commander of the Armed Forces Operational Command “South.” According to Kovalchuk, when the losses ratio reaches the “critical” point of 1 to 8, “the enemy forces will disintegrate psychologically.”

16 explosions reported in Belgorod, Russia. Russian state news agency RIA Novosti reported on Oct. 16 that 16 explosions were heard in Belgorod, a Russian city located just about 50 kilometers away from the Ukrainian border. Russian media report explosions in occupied Donetsk. According to the Russian state news agency RIA Novosti, the former city council building was damaged as a result of an attack on Oct. 16.

Russian media: Putin to call Security Council meeting in coming days. Russian state-controlled media RIA Novosti announced the Kremlin’s tentative Security Council meeting on Oct. 16, making it the second in just around a week since the meeting held on Oct. 10 in the aftermath of the explosion at the illegal Crimean Bridge connecting Ukraine’s occupied Crimea to Russia.

Washington Post: Iran plans to send ballistic missiles, drones to Russia. The Washington Post reported, citing unnamed U.S. and allied security officials, that Iran is preparing the first shipment of Fateh-110 and Zolfaghar missiles for Russia.

Israeli minister: Time has come for Israel to support Ukraine. The delivery of Iranian ballistic missiles to Russia impels Israel to deliver military aid to Ukraine, Israeli Diaspora Affairs Minister Nachman Shai wrote on Twitter. “There is no longer any doubt where Israel should stand in this bloody conflict,” wrote Shai. “The time has come for Ukraine to receive military aid as well, just as the U.S. and NATO countries provide.”

UK Intelligence: Russia probably incapable of producing advanced munitions at the rate they are being expended. According to the U.K. Defense Ministry’s latest intelligence report, Russia’s massive attacks on Ukraine such as on Oct. 10 “represent a further degradation of Russia’s long-range missile stocks, which is likely to constrain their ability to strike the volume of targets they desire in future.”

Belarusian Defense Ministry: Nearly 9,000 troops to form Russia-Belarus joint military force. The figure for the joint regional military command between Moscow and Minsk was announced on Oct. 16 by Valery Revenko, the head of the Belarusian Defense Ministry’s Department for International Military Cooperation. The joint Russia-Belarus force was announced by Belarusian dictator Alexander Lukashenko on Oct. 10.

Ukraine offers $100,000 bounty for Russian war criminal Igor Girkin. The Defense Ministry’s Main Intelligence Directorate announced the reward on Oct. 16. Girkin, also known as Igor Strelkov, is a former Russian FSB agent and a key figure in the start of Russia’s war against Ukraine when he helped seize Sloviansk, Donetsk Oblast, in 2014. Girkin has also been found guilty of participating in the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 over Ukraine, which killed 283 people. He has since been critical of Russian President Vladimir Putin, accusing him of mishandling Russia’s war effort.

Ukrainian, Turkish ministers meet to discuss extension of Black Sea grain deal. Infrastructure Minister Oleksandr Kubrakov met with Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar on Oct. 16 in Istanbul to negotiate the extension of the U.N.-brokered Black Sea Grain Initiative, set to expire on Nov. 22. The talks come as Russian ambassador to the U.N. missions in Geneva Gennadiy Gatilov complained that the deal wasn’t giving proper treatment to Russian grain and fertilizer exports.

Shmyhal: Ukraine’s ‘energy integrity’ intact after mass Russian attacks. Ukraine’s energy infrastructure has withstood over 130 Russian missile and drone attacks over the past week, Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal said on Oct. 16. “The aggressor sought to intimidate Ukrainians and paralyze the state’s energy,” Shmyhal said. He noted that Russia did not reach its goal, as “Ukraine was prepared.” In addition to targeting civilian areas, Russia’s coordinated attacks on Oct. 10 hit energy infrastructure across the country.

The human cost of Russia’s war

Update: Russian shelling of Nikopol on Oct. 16 wounds 6 people, hospitalizes 2. Russian forces hit Nikopol, Dnipropetrovsk Oblast, over 30 times with artillery and around 50 times with Grad multiple rocket launchers earlier on Oct. 16, reported Deputy Head of the President’s Office Kyrylo Tymoshenko. Kyrylenko said Russia’s targets in the city included the Palace of Culture, a school, a cafe, industrial areas, and electrical substations.

Prosecutor General’s Office: Russia’s war has killed 423 children, injured 810 since February. The highest number of casualties was documented in Donetsk Oblast, where 407 children have been killed or injured since the beginning of Russia’s full-scale invasion, the Prosecutor General’s Office reported on Oct. 16.General Staff: Russia has lost 65,000 troops in Ukraine since Feb. 24. Ukraine’s General Staff reported on Oct. 16 that Russia had also lost 2,529 tanks, 5,193 armored fighting vehicles, 1,589 artillery systems, 365 multiple launch rocket systems, 186 air defense systems, 268 airplanes, 242 helicopters, 1,224 drones, and 16 boats.

International response

World Bank: Poverty level in Ukraine has increased tenfold. Twenty-five percent of Ukrainians would be living in poverty by the end of the year and the number could rise to as high as 55% by the end of 2023, according to World Bank regional country director for Eastern Europe Arup Banerji.

German president: Russia’s war key cause of global hunger. In addition to the climate crisis, the global problems with grain supply suffered as a result of Russia’s war against Ukraine is one of the main causes of 830 million people living in malnutrition today, according to German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier. “These problems are due to Russia’s brutal, aggressive war against Ukraine,” said Steinmeier, Deutsche Welle reports.

U.S. official: China, India should warn Russia not to use nuclear weapons. U.S. National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan told CNN that countries should send “a very clear and decisive message to Russia that they should not contemplate the use of nuclear weapons” in the war against Ukraine. “We’re not going to slice the salami,” he said, referring to the fact that any nuclear strike will be met with a harsh response.

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