Russia Ukraine news latest: Zelensky involved in car accident after visiting newly liberated city Izyum

Russia ‘likely to concede area half the size of Wales’ in Ukraine, officials say

Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky was hurt after being involved in a car accident.

Mr Zelensky had returned to Kyiv after travelling to visit a newly captured city in the northeast province of Kharkiv when the accident took place, and was later seen by a doctor, spokesperson Sergii Nykyforov wrote on social media.

“The president was examined by a doctor, no serious injuries were found,” he said.

The Ukrainian president suffered minor injuries and the cause of the accident is being investigated.

Mr Zelensky travelled to Izyum earlier on Wednesday to attend a flag-raising ceremony. The now devastated city was used by the Russians as a key supply hub before it was liberated late last week by the Ukrainian army as part of the significant advance it has made in northeast Ukraine.

In other news, residents in a southern Ukrainian city, Kryvyi Rih, have been asked to evacuate because of a risk of flooding after missiles hit a major dam, city head Oleksandr Vilkul said on Wednesday.

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President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen arrives in Kyiv

The president of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, has arrived in Kyiv.

She tweeted that she will be meeting with president Volodomyr Zelenskiy and with Ukraine’s prime minister, Denys Shmyhal.

Yesterday, addressing the European parliament in Strasbourg, von der Leyen insisted “Putin will fail and Europe will prevail” and said that the EU would stay the course with its sanctions on Russia. “The sanctions are here to stay,” she said. “This is the time for us to show resolve not appeasement.”

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Flooding as missiles hit Zelensky’s home city

Kryvyi Rih, the largest city in central Ukraine with an estimated pre-war population of 650,000, was hit by eight cruise missiles on Wednesday, officials said.

The strikes hit the Karachunov reservoir dam, Zelenskiy said in a video address released early on Thursday. The water system had “no military value” and hundreds of thousands of civilians depend on it daily, he said.

Oleksandr Vilkul, the head of the Krivyi Rih military administration, said in a post on Telegram that 112 homes were flooded but that works to repair the dam on the Inhulets river were under way and that “flooding was receding”.

Russian forces suffered a stunning reversal this month after Ukrainian troops made a rapid armoured thrust in the Kharkiv region in its northeast, forcing a rushed Russian withdrawal.

A view shows a hydraulic structure damaged by a Russian missile strike, amid Russia’s attack on Ukraine

(via REUTERS)

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Ukraine needs $350 billion to rebuild

German economy minister Robert Habeck said on Thursday Ukraine needs $350 billion for reconstruction, according to Kyiv’s own estimates.

Mr Habeck welcomed G7 trade ministers during a meeting at Neuhardenberg Castle in the state of Brandenburg on Thursday. He added that he could see the possibility of victory for democracy in Ukraine.

“You now can see that it could come to an end with victory for freedom and democracy,” Mr Habeck told reporters after meeting Ukraine’s trade minister.

After regaining key areas in Kharkiv, president Zelensky urged the west to provide more military aid to Ukraine. Speaking to reporters, Mr Habeck said Germany will deliver more weapons.

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Pictured: President Zelensky makes surprise visit to regained Kharkiv

(EPA)

(AFP via Getty Images)

(AP)

(AFP via Getty Images)

(AFP via Getty Images)

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Russian troops ‘retreating in panic’ from Ukraine counter attack as ‘high value ’ equipment abandoned

Some Russian troops are “retreating in panic” in response to Ukraine’s Kharkiv counter-attack, the latest British intelligence update.

“The way in which Russian forces have withdrawn in the last week has varied. Some units retreated in relatively good order and under control, while others fled in apparent panic,” the update stated.

It added that “high-value” equipment was abandoned by fleeing forces including weapons essential to enable Russia’s artillery-centric style of warfare.

“Amongst these are at least one ZOOPARK counter-battery radar and at least one IV14 artillery command and control vehicle,” the update said.

“Such abandonment highlights the disorganised retreat of some Russian units and likely localised breakdowns in command and control.”

Ukrainian soldiers drive near Izium, Kharkiv region.

(REUTERS)

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Local Russian official stands by his statement despite threats

Despite being threatened by the Russian regime, a local Russian official who had called for Vladimir Putin to resign has stuck by his statements.

CNN reported that Nikita Yuferev, a deputy in Smolninskoye Municipal District in St Petersburg said: “We will continue to insist on his resignation.”

He claimed that public opinion in Russia was shifting and that he was receiving support from people. “It shows just how much support we are getting and how our ideas are being accepted by Russian society.

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German chancellor says Putin does not think war was a mistake

German chancellor Olaf Scholz has said that Vladimir Putin does not realise the invasion of Ukraine is a mistake.

Mr Scholz said that he urged the Russian president to withdraw troops and re-enter talks with Ukraine during his 90-minute call on Tuesday.

He said that Mr Putin has “unfortunately” not changed his position on the invasion.

“It is right to speak with each other and to say what there is to say on this subject.”

Germany has donated more than $1.2bn in military aid to Kyiv till August this year.

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Russian Defense Ministry slammed for publishing fake video of destroyed Ukrainian barge

Russia’s Defense Ministry has been accused of publishing a fake video showing them destroying a barge, on which Ukrainian forces were supposedly being transported to retake the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant.

However, Kyiv Independent quoting the Insider and Gray Zone Telegram channel said that the “barge” was actually the support of a bridge built and mostly destroyed during WWII.

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Kremlin says Russians back Vladimir Putin but warns of a ‘very thin line’ on criticism

The Russian people back President Putin, the Kremlin insisted on Tuesday, despite murmurings of discontent and criticism following Ukraine’s successful military counteroffensive in the past week.

But officials warned there was a “very, very, thin line” that would be tolerated by Moscow when it comes to criticism of the Russian leader.

Read the full story by David Harding here:

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‘They were in a sad state’: Ukraine forces find Russians in retreat

Some of the Russian forces driven out of Ukraine’s Kharkiv region have fled back across the border, although the elite tank regiment tasked to carry out the first strike against Nato and defend Moscow has stopped its retreat at Donetsk. The Kremlin’s main stronghold in northeast Ukraine has fallen, the route to Donbas reclaimed by Volodymyr Zelensky’s troops.

Read the full analysis by The Independent’s Kim Sengupta here:

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