UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said on Wednesday he would launch a fact-finding mission into an attack on the Olenivka prison in a Russian-occupied part of eastern Ukraine.
The Russian army said 50 people were killed and 73 injured in last week’s strike.
Kiev blames Moscow for the attack, which in turn has suggested Ukraine was behind the attack.
Russia said Ukraine was carrying it out to prevent its soldiers from surrendering due to low morale.
The Ukrainian military denied the charge, accusing the Russians of shelling the prison to cover up the alleged torture and execution of Ukrainians there.
Russia and Ukraine have both requested an investigation, Guterres told reporters.
He said the mission statement, which requires agreement from Russia and Ukraine, is being prepared.
Here are the other headlines from the war in Ukraine on August 3.
Gazprom says turbine supply ‘impossible’
Western sanctions are making it “impossible” to supply the Nord Stream 1 gas turbine to Russia, state energy giant Gazprom said.
The unit had been serviced in Canada, with Gazprom citing the works as the reason for its decision to greatly reduce gas supplies to Europe. But Western politicians argue that the reparations are just an excuse for Russia to exacerbate the current energy crisis as a means of exerting political pressure in the conflict in Ukraine.
Gazprom’s latest statement fuels fears that Russia will continue to restrict Europe’s energy supplies.
Earlier on Wednesday, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said the turbine has received “all approvals” needed for export from Germany to Russia.
He added that the pipeline’s operators only had to say that “they want to have the turbine and provide the necessary customs information” to complete the delivery.
Istanbul inspectors clear grain ship en route to Lebanon
The first grain ship to leave Ukraine since the start of the war passed inspection and passed through the Bosphorus on its way to Lebanon.
Last month, Turkey and the United Nations signed a grain and fertilizer export agreement between Russia and Ukraine. It is hoped that the ship bound for Lebanon will be the first of many to alleviate a global food security crisis.
The Razoni ship left the port of Odessa on the Black Sea early Monday with 26,527 tons of corn on board. It docked at the entrance to Bosphorus Street on Tuesday evening before departing on Wednesday.
The ship was inspected by Russian, Ukrainian, Turkish and UN personnel working at a Joint Coordination Center (JCC) in Istanbul.
Kiev said it had 17 more ships ready and loaded with agricultural products awaiting approval to leave.
Ukraine’s ambassador to Lebanon, Ihor Ostash, said the ship was expected to arrive in Tripoli, Lebanon’s second-largest city, within four to five days.
Later on Wednesday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy sounded gloomy about the Istanbul-brokered grain deal.
“Recently, thanks to the UN in cooperation with Turkey, we had a first ship with the delivery of grain, but it is still nothing. But we hope it is a trend that will continue,” Zelenskyy told Australian students in a video call.
The Ukrainian leader believes Russia may still try to block Ukrainian exports despite the agreement, saying Moscow’s “lockdown of ports is a major loss to the economy”.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has said the grain shipment is “just a first step”.
Switzerland imposes new gold sanctions on Moscow
Switzerland introduced new sanctions against Russia on Wednesday, targeting the country’s gold sector. The move is in line with recent sanctions imposed by the EU.
“The new measures mainly relate to a ban on buying, importing or transporting gold and gold products from Russia,” the Swiss government said in a statement.
At the same time, Switzerland said it promised to ease the global food and energy crisis. Bern granted Moscow several exemptions from sanctions related to trade in agricultural products and oil supplies to third countries.
“To avoid disruption of payment channels, the Federal Council (Cabinet) has made two new exceptions regarding transactions related to agricultural products and oil deliveries to third countries, just like the EU,” the statement said.
Ukraine claims Russia is looking for Zelenskyy’s birthplace
Ukraine said on Wednesday that Russian troops are preparing to launch a new offensive in southern parts of the country. The Ukrainian military also believes that Russia is setting up an attack force that will target the birthplace of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, Kryvyi Rih.
Kryvyi Rih is 50 kilometers (30 miles) from the southern front line.
“Russia has started to set up an assault group in the direction of Kryvyi Rih. It is also quite likely that the enemy is preparing a hostile counter-offensive with the subsequent plan to reach the administrative border of the Kherson region,” the southern military command said. of Ukraine in its statement. latest update.
Russia currently controls the southern region of Kherson, but Kiev has vowed to launch a counter-offensive and take back territory.
EU does not know how many Ukrainians have returned home
The European Union is unsure exactly how many Ukrainians have returned to their war-torn homeland after initially being granted temporary protected status within the bloc.
“We don’t know exactly how many people have actually decided to go back,” said EU Home Affairs Commissioner Ylva Johansson, referring to the 3.9 million Ukrainians who had signed up for the scheme that will allow them to travel freely and to work in the European Union.
The bloc has seen “extremely few people opt out so far” after claiming special protection status, she told reporters.
Shortly after Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24, all 27 EU member states agreed to reduce bureaucratic hurdles and provide swift protection to Ukrainians fleeing the war.
More about the war in Ukraine
The US announced a new weapons package and Russia labeled the Azov regiment as terrorists. Read this and other updates from Tuesday here.
Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine has sparked its own interpretive battle online, an unprecedented showdown of military violence and media power. An essay by media scientist Bernhard Pörksen addresses the issue.
Mykhailo Podolyak is special adviser to the Ukrainian president. He spoke to TBEN about the progress of the war and why his country is not considering negotiations with Russia at this time. Read what he had to say here.
lo,jsi,wd/dj (TBEN, TBEN, dpa, Reuters)