Ukraine news/Archive/2023-12

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31 Dec. A new Ukrainian strike killed an old man shopping for groceries, and wounded a woman - the store keeper, in Krasnoe settlement, Belgorod region, Russia (1, 2).

Ukrainian shelling of central Donetsk damaged cars and building windows, no reports of casualties at this time

It is reported that 3 Ukrainian drones are destroyed over Rostov region.

Russian drones strike Ukrainian communication equipment and cameras - video.

30 Dec. Media reports Russian counter-strikes (1, 2, 3).

Ukrainian attack on residential areas in Belgorod, mainland Russia (video/photo 1, 2, 3), have at least 24 killed and 108 injured. According to RU MoD, "the strike was carried out by two Ol'kha (Alder) missiles in a cluster version, and Czech Vampire MLRS shells. Most of them were intercepted, otherwise the consequences would have been more severe". Russia has asked for a UNSC meeting (1, 2)(UNSC meeting video). RU FM blamed Ukraine as well as Western involvement. Nebenzia: we are not looking at an attack at military targets which just happened to kill civilians. This is deliberate terrorism which was targeting civilians (UNSC video, 22:50 +, Eng.). RT subsequently claimed the attack was carried out by 'Kraken' units under the orders of Kiril Budanov, and approved by Zelensky.

RU MoD: "At night, 32 Ukrainian drones were intercepted and destroyed over the Moscow, Bryansk, Oryol and Kursk regions"

29 Dec. Large scale Russian missile and drone attack on targets across Ukraine. Ukrainian sources report 31 killed. Russian sources attribute unintended casualties and damage on Ukrainian air defenses (RU rep. Nebenzia at the UN) ("missile exploding over Kiev" on video)

26 Dec. Ukrainian air-to-ground missile hits Russian large landing ship "Novocherkassk" in a port in Feodosia, eastern Crimea. Large explosion is seen on video, suggesting serious damage to the ship. One person is killed, four injured, six buildings are damaged. Russian forces then attacked 2 Ukrainian planes involved in the missile launch. (1, 2, 3).

25 Dec. A woman is killed by Ukrainian shelling of Donetsk. Another civilian woman was killed, said to be shielding her children, and another wounded by Ukrainian fire on 24th in Gorlovka, and a TV center was destroyed.

Report: "Maidan attempt in Serbia" after opposition lost in elections. Police is in control in linked videos

After 20 days of vanishing in "inter-prison transit" ("etap"), Navalnyi emerged (1 2)) in (a harsh) colony No. 3 in the village of Kharp, Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous District, above the polar circle, posting a photo (likely made earlier?) and brief transit details; says he s visited by in a new place by his attorney. While certain active Russian opposition figures claimed (without sourcing) that he is in Moscow in attempts to arrange his exchange with the "USA".

23 Dec. According to Donetsk mayor, Ukraine shelled residential Donetsk 26 times in that day, 11 people were wounded.

22 Dec. Russian media sources confirm (1, 2) that one Russian Su 34 bomber was downed near Krynki, said to be with "Patriot" air defense system, followed by a successful rescue/recovery operation. Ukrainian sources claim that 3 planes were downed in the same event. Ukraine maintains landing ground in Krynki, on the Russian side of the Dnieper near Kherson, despite heavy losses and little prospect of its military usefulness, apart from media appearances.

21 Dec. The Russian army repelled an attack near the Crimean bridge. Report claims that "Poseidon" P-8 plane was in the area prior.

20 Dec. Ukrainian forces shelled Donetsk with MLRS, Republican Traumatology Center and the trolleybus depot were hit, 4 people including medics were wounded -report, photos.

"Valery Gerasimov meeting with foreign military attaches" (report and video).

19 Dec. Zelensky stated at a press conference that he General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine turned to him with a request to mobilize another 450-500 thousand people. (Subsequent attempts to change mobilization law proved controversial 1, 2)

18 Dec. US to Gain Access to 15 Military Bases in Finland (and 2 in Sweden).

11 Dec. Zelensky came to Washington to beg for more American weapons, to have more Russians, and Ukrainians, killed in an avoidable war.

Rep Thomas Massie to Tucker: "to support this money you have to be economically illiterate and morally deficient"...while (Jake Sullivan. who makes argument that withholding aid is helping Putin) is himself part of Putin's reelection campaign (as the latter is "a cold war relic", propped up in response to the Western "cold war relic which is NATO")

10 Dec. Tucker Carson + Musk raised questions about Lira arrest in Ukraine, but it seems to do no good for Lira release. (How can a journalist sitting on his ass in an apartment in Kharkov reveal any military info, unless it was on social networks anyway?)

6 Dec. Ukrainian politician, ex-Rada MP Ilya Kiva is shot twice and killed near Moscow. His positions changed dramatically over the years, from Maidan, Right Sector, ATO, Avakov, to Opposition Platform-for life and often virulent pro-Russian stance, to apparently backing Poroshenko-Klitchko challenge to Zelensky. Seems to line up with assassination attempt on Tsarev, a recent arrest of a man said to prepare assassination of Aksenov, and all pointing to Ukraine. (Ukrainian sources actually accepting SBU responsibility, backed by video from the scene, and are cheered up for that).

Strelkov detention is extended by another 6 month by the Russian court.

1 Dec. It is reported that Russian forces took control of Mar'inka, a town west of Donetsk

Russian FM Lavrov press conference (Eng, Rus. vid.) and OSCE session presentation (Eng)

Seymour Hersh: General to General, allegedly Gerasimov-Zaluzhnyi talks (full article paywalled)