As the war enters its 709th day, here are the main developments.
Here is the situation as of Friday February 2, 2024.
- Oleksandr Prokudin, governor of southern Ukraine’s Kherson region, said two French volunteer aid workers were killed after a Russian drone attack on the town of Beryslav. Four people were injured, including three foreigners.
- One person was killed and two others injured in Russian shelling and rocket fire on villages in the eastern Donetsk region, Ukraine’s presidential office said.
- Ukraine said four people were injured in a Russian missile attack on a medical facility in the eastern Kharkiv region, near the frontline town of Kupiansk.
- Ukraine’s military intelligence agency GUR said it attacked and sank the Russian corvette Ivanovets in the Black Sea using underwater drones. Private security company Ambrey said Ukraine used up to six maritime drones in the attack. There has been no official word from Russia on the alleged sinking.
- In an opinion piece published by CNN, Ukraine’s army chief, General Valerii Zaluzhnyi, called the development of unmanned weapons systems the “central engine” of the war. Zaluzhnyi also outlined key issues for Ukraine, including mobilization and weapons production.
- The Russian Investigative Committee, the country’s main national criminal investigation agency, said evidence from missile fragments suggested that two Patriot missiles downed the Russian Il-76 military transport plane that crushed near the border with Ukraine last month. kyiv has neither confirmed nor denied its role in the accident.
- The Russian Defense Ministry said air defenses shot down 11 Ukrainian drones over the Russian regions of Belgorod, Kursk and Voronezh.
Politics and diplomacy
- European Union leaders overcame Hungary’s objections approve a 50 billion euro ($54 billion) aid package to support Ukraine over the next four years.
- Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy welcomed the approval, saying it was “of crucial importance” for Ukraine’s stability and a “clear signal” to both Russia and the United States , where a massive aid plan remains blocked in Congress.
- China has demanded that Ukraine immediately remove some 14 Chinese companies from kyiv’s list of companies designated as “international war sponsors”, the Reuters news agency reported.
- A Russian court extended the pre-trial detention of journalist Alsou Kurmasheva. The dual US-Russian citizen, who works for Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL), was jailed in October and charged with failing to register as a “foreign agent” and broadcasting “false information” about Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
- Thailand deported members of Bi-2, a Russian-Belarusian dissident rock band critical of Moscow’s war in Ukraine, in Israel after being arrested for performing without a permit. Human rights groups have warned that the groups would be persecuted for their criticism of the war if sent to Russia.
- The Latvian parliament voted to ban its national teams from playing against national teams from Russia and Belarus, regardless of the flag they compete under, as a sign of solidarity with Ukraine.
- Kyrylo Budanov, head of Ukrainian military intelligence, called on the United States to provide A-10 attack aircraft to Ukraine, arguing that this would significantly strengthen Ukraine’s frontline capabilities.