Ukraine Daily Summary - Friday, September 29

Abducting the future: How Ukrainian parents fight to rescue their children from Russia -- Russia is covering Ukraine with landmines. Clearing them will be extremely difficult -- Germany greenlights joint Rheinmetall-Ukraine venture in Kyiv -- and more

Friday, September 29

Russia’s war against Ukraine

Local residents walk past damaged shops and buildings in Kupiansk, Kharkiv Oblast, on Sept. 28, 2023, amid the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Kupiansk is less than 10 kilometers (6 miles) from the front line in Ukraine’s north-eastern Kharkiv Oblast. (Photo by Roman PILIPEY / AFP) (Photo by ROMAN PILIPEY/AFP via Getty Images)

Zelensky meets Stoltenberg, French defense minister in Kyiv. President Volodymyr Zelensky thanked Stoltenberg for a “meaningful conversation” during a press briefing following their talks. The president said that both Kyiv and NATO are doing everything they can to ensure Ukraine becomes a member of the alliance as soon as possible.

Reuters: UN trade chief says Ukraine’s grain corridor is positive step but not lasting solution. The opening of a humanitarian corridor by Ukraine to bypass Russia’s de facto blockade is a move in the right direction, but should not replace a larger deal to resume shipping through the Black Sea, the top United Nations trade chief said in comments to Reuters on Sept. 27.

Pentagon: English language training for Ukrainian F-16 pilots begins in US. The U.S. Department of Defense has officially confirmed the beginning of English language classes as part of the program to train Ukrainian pilots to fly F-16 fighter jets.

Polish government confirms Ukrainian air defense missile fell on Polish soil last year. The projectile that caused the death of two people in Poland’s Przewodow in November last year was a stray Ukrainian anti-air missile, Polish Justice Minister Zbigniew Ziobro confirmed, the Polish Radio Lublin reported on Sept. 28.

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Zaluzhnyi meets UK Defense Staff Chief Radakin. Zaluzhnyi said during the talks he emphasized the importance of reinforcing Ukraine’s air defense capabilities. “I thanked him for his visit and for supporting Ukraine in the fight against Russian aggression,” Ukraine’s top general wrote on Telegram.

Ukraine to serve on IAEA Board of Governors. Ukraine has been elected to serve on the Board of Governors for the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), according to the UN nuclear watchdog’s statement posted on Sept. 28.

Russia claims 11 drones downed over Kursk, Kaluga regions. Russia’s Defense Ministry claimed on Sept. 29 that its forces shot down 11 Ukrainian drones overnight — 10 over the Kursk region and another one over the Kaluga region. Kyiv hasn’t commented.

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Abducting the future: How Ukrainian parents fight to rescue their children from Russia

Since last February, nearly 20,000 Ukrainian children have been identified as abducted from Russian-occupied territories and sent to other Russian-controlled areas of Ukraine, or to Russia itself, according to a Ukrainian national database on child abductees. 

Photo: Sergei Chuzavkov/AFP via Getty Images

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Russia is covering Ukraine with landmines. Clearing them will be extremely difficult

In December 2022, Human Rights Watch confirmed that Russia was using anti-personnel and anti-vehicle landmines in its invasion of Ukraine, and that approximately 30% of the country — an area twice the size of Austria — had been “contaminated” with mines.

Photo:  Joe Raedle/Getty Images

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Ukraine war latest: European defense leaders visit Kyiv

President Volodymyr Zelensky held separate meetings with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and French Defense Minister Sebastien Lecornu during a visit of the two officials to Kyiv on Sept. 28.

Photo: Sergei Supinsky/AFP

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Why Ukraine is getting rid of Soviet remnants

Why Ukraine is getting rid of Soviet remnants

Human cost of war

Russian shelling of Kherson kills 3 women. According to the prosecutors, Russia carried out the attack against the city at 6 p.m., targeting residential districts and causing casualties in the streets.

Russian shelling of Krasnohorivka, Donetsk Oblast, kills 2, injures 3. According to the prosecutors, Russia shelled the town at 12 p.m. local time using 152 mm artillery. Two men aged 47 and 54 were reportedly killed in the attack. A 60-year-old man and two women aged 45 and 61 suffered injuries as a result of the strike, the Prosecutor’s Office said.

Russia attacks Kostiantynivka in Donetsk Oblast, injuring 3.

“At 12:50, there was a strike in the residential district of Kostiantynivka,” Roslov reportedly said. “According to the latest information, three people were injured, one of them is in serious condition.”

International response

Sweden provides 25 million euros to support Ukraine’s energy system. Sweden has allocated 25.2 million euros ($26.6 million) to the Energy Support Fund for Ukraine and has already delivered over 1,000 tons of equipment to aid in the restoration of the power infrastructure.

Pentagon: Government shutdown to affect F-16 training for Ukrainian pilots. The Pentagon spokesperson reportedly said during a press briefing that a “shutdown is the worst scenario that can happen to the (Defense) Department” regarding the training of Ukrainian crews on F-16s.

The Hill: Republicans remove Ukraine funding from US defense spending bill. The House Rules Committee convened at night on Sept. 27 to remove the funding for the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative from the defense spending package and instead had it stand as a separate bill, the outlet said.

EU extends protection for Ukrainian refugees until 2025. “The EU will support the Ukrainian people for as long as it takes,” Spanish acting Interior Minister Fernando Grande-Marlaska Gomez said. “The prolongation of the protection status offers certainty to the more than 4 million refugees who have found a safe haven in the EU.”

Germany greenlights joint Rheinmetall-Ukraine venture in Kyiv. This new enterprise will provide “maintenance, assembly, production, and development of military vehicles” and initially operate exclusively on the territory of Ukraine, the German Federal Cartel Office said.

US State Department: American weapons are used properly by Ukraine. Weapons that Ukraine receives to counter Russian aggression are used properly, U.S. State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller said during a press briefing on Sept. 28. There were no cases of the weaponry falling into the wrong hands.

Kazakhstan confirms intent to comply with sanctions against Russia. Kazakhstan will “definitely comply” with the sanctions regime against Russia, the country’s President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev said at a press briefing on Sept. 28 after talks with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz.

In other news

Nagorno-Karabakh authorities dissolve self-declared government.

The president of the self-declared Nagorno-Karabakh Republic, Samvel Shakhramanyan, signed a decree on Sept. 28 dissolving all official institutions of the breakaway state from Jan. 1, 2024, Karabakh authorities announced. The government of the self-declared republic will “cease to exist” as an entity from that day, the decree said.

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Today’s Ukraine Daily was brought to you by Lili Bivings, Nate Ostiller, Toma Istomina, Martin Fornusek, Olena Goncharova, and Kateryna Ilnytska.

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