War in Ukraine: the 1st shipment of Ukrainian grain leaves the port of Odessa
The first shipment of Ukrainian grain left the port of Odessa at 06:17 GMT on Monday, in accordance with the terms of the international agreement with Russia signed in Istanbul, the Turkish Defense Ministry announced.
“The Razoni ship left the port of Odessa bound for the port of Tripoli in Lebanon. It is expected on August 2 in Istanbul. It will continue on its way to its destination following the inspections that will be carried out in Istanbul”, added the Ministry.
Information to remember:
- The first shipment of Ukrainian grain left the port of Odessa on Monday
- An explosive drone injured six people on Sunday at the headquarters of the Russian Black Sea Fleet in Sevastopol
Other convoys will follow this first departure while respecting “the (maritime) corridor and the agreed formalities”, adds the ministry.
Signed on July 22 in Istanbul, the deal that allows Ukrainian exports to resume aims to ease a global food crisis that has seen prices soar in some of the world’s poorest countries.
A hold capacity of 30,000 tonnes
According to the Marine Traffic site, which tracks the movements of boats, the Razoni was still docked Monday at 05:00 GMT in the port of Odessa to which it signified its departure at 04:30 GMT. Built in 1996 and 186 m long by 25 wide, the Razoni has a hold capacity of 30,000 tonnes.
The Joint Coordination Center (JCC), responsible for controlling Ukrainian grain exports via the Black Sea, was inaugurated in Istanbul on Wednesday in accordance with the agreement. It brings together representatives of the two belligerents, as well as Turkey and the United Nations.
The CCC must register and monitor the merchant ships that will participate in the convoys, ensure their follow-up via the internet and by satellite, have the ships inspected at the time of loading in Ukrainian ports and upon their arrival in Turkish ports.
Explosive drone injures six people
An explosive drone injured six people on Sunday at the headquarters of the Russian Black Sea Fleet in Sevastopol, Crimea, an unprecedented attack that put this Russian stronghold on the Ukrainian peninsula annexed by Moscow on high alert.
Russian strikes continue on Ukrainian cities, including Mykolaiv, where the heaviest bombardment since the start of the war has killed at least two residents, according to local authorities. During the night from Sunday to Monday, “powerful explosions” sounded again in this southern city, its mayor, Oleksandr Senkevych said on Telegram.
Volodymyr Zelensky accuses Russian forces of practicing “terror” tactics
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Saturday accused Russian forces of practicing “terror” tactics by bombing Ukrainian cities, announcing the general evacuation of the population of the Donetsk region (east).
In Sevastopol, a port city that continued to house the Russian Black Sea Fleet after the Soviet Union broke up under an agreement with kyiv, but was formally annexed by Moscow along with the rest of Crimea in In 2014, a drone exploded in the courtyard of the Russian Fleet headquarters, injuring six, Governor Mikhail Razvojayev said on Telegram.
The “yellow anti-terrorist alert” level decreed
The authorities declared the level “yellow” (intermediate) of anti-terrorism alert after this rather minor attack in view of the images posted online by the governor of Sevastopol, which show broken windows on the ground.
“The Ukrainian-Nazis have decided to spoil Russian Military Fleet Day for us,” the governor wrote, using an expression commonly used by the authorities and Russian propaganda to refer to the kyiv forces. He said the festivities were canceled and asked townspeople not to leave their homes “if possible”.
Ukrainian authorities have denied being behind the unprecedented attack, calling the Russian accusations a “deliberate provocation”.
Ukraine inflicts several humiliations on the Russian fleet
The Ukrainian Navy has hypothesized a pretext to cancel the planned festivities in Sevastopol for fear of a real attack.
“In reality, (…) in order not to be humiliated in the eyes of the world by their fear of the Ukrainian army, the Russians have + invented + an excuse to cancel the celebrations”, she wrote on Facebook.
Ukraine, although partially invaded since February 24, and under fire from Russian artillery and cruise missiles, inflicted several humiliations on the Russian fleet, first sinking its flagship, the cruiser Moskva, then regaining control of Serpent Island, a strategic island facing the mouth of the Danube.
Russian President Vladimir Putin celebrated Russian Fleet Day away from Sevastopol, in Saint Petersburg (northwest), with a speech promising the arrival “in the coming months” of a new hypersonic cruise missile who “knows no obstacles”.
Mykolaiv, target of massive Russian bombardments
In southern Ukraine, Mykolaiv authorities said on Sunday that the city had been the target of massive Russian bombardments, probably “the strongest” since the start of the war in February, which left at least two dead, according to Mayor Senkevych.
These strikes caused the death of Oleksiï Vadatoursky, owner of the main Ukrainian grain logistics company and his wife. “He was one of the most important agricultural entrepreneurs in the country, a key figure in the region and a major employer,” said Mikhailo Podoliak, adviser to the Ukrainian presidency, on Telegram, saying he believed in this case to be a targeted strike.
In his Sunday address, President Zelensky paid tribute to Oleksiï Vadatoursky, whom he described as “the hero of Ukraine”.
Residents of Donetsk region urged to evacuate
Other strikes hit the regions of Kharkiv (east) and Sumy (north-east). Some buildings were damaged in “a series of explosions” in Kharkiv, announced the mayor of the second Ukrainian city, Igor Terekhov.
One person was killed and two injured in the Sumy region which has been the target of “more than 50 strikes” in the past 24 hours, according to Governor Dmytro Zhyvytsky.
On Saturday evening, Volodymyr Zelensky called on the inhabitants of the Donetsk region to comply with the evacuation order, to escape “Russian terror” and bombardments on this territory in the east of the country, largely under the control of Moscow.
200,000 civilians still present in the Donetsk region
At least 200,000 civilians still live in the territories of the Donetsk region that are not under Russian occupation, according to an estimate by the Ukrainian authorities.
On Friday, the explosion of a hangar housing Ukrainian soldiers prisoners in Olenivka, in territory occupied by the Russians in the Donetsk region, left 50 dead and 73 seriously injured. A “deliberate Russian war crime”, according to Mr. Zelensky.
Mykhailo Podoliak, adviser to the Ukrainian presidency, questioned on Sunday the version of a “strike” advanced by the Russians, who accuse the Ukrainian army. “A strike? No, a terrorist attack,” he wrote on Twitter. “1. Satellite images show that only one building was damaged. 2. The prisoners had been brought there just before the attack. 3. Photo analysis shows a thermobaric explosion from inside,” he said. he assures.
The International Committee of the Red Cross said on Sunday that it had still not received official authorization from Moscow to visit the scene, and stressed that it was “imperative that the ICRC have immediate access” to the site and to the victims.
On Saturday evening, the Russian Ministry of Defense said it had “officially invited” experts from the UN and the ICRC to go there “in the interest of an objective investigation”.
Ukraine had on Friday asked the ICRC and the United Nations Human Rights Monitoring Mission, which had supervised in May the surrender negotiated with the Russians of the defenders of the Azovstal factory in Mariupol (south- east), to go to Olenivka. President Zelensky had stressed that the UN and the ICRC had “guaranteed” the lives of Ukrainian soldiers and had to “react”.
After long weeks of siege and resistance at the Azovstal steelworks, around 2,500 Ukrainian fighters had surrendered and Moscow had let it be known that they would be imprisoned at Olenivka.
Accused Friday by the Russian Investigative Committee of having bombarded the detention center of its own soldiers with “American” missiles, the Ukrainian army brushed aside these claims, believing that they were for Russian or separatist forces to “camouflage the torture of prisoners and the executions” committed.
According to Ukrainian intelligence, the attack “was carried out by mercenaries from the Wagner division”, a Russian company of mercenaries whose men have been accused of crimes in Syria and Africa in particular.
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