Espreso. Global

Victorious news of 705th day of war: drone hits one of Russia's largest oil refineries, Ukrainian forces expand foothold on Dnipro's left bank

29 January, 2024 Monday

A large oil refinery in Russia was targeted by a drone, and Khmelnytskyi NPP is preparing to break a European record

Drone targeted one of Russia's largest oil refineries in Yaroslavl

On January 29, Russia announced that a drone had hit the Slavneft-YANOS oil refinery in Yaroslavl. The territory of the enterprise was cordoned off. 

According to Baza, the drone crashed near a hydrocracking unit at the refinery. It happened around 7:00 a.m- Moscow time.

Later, the governor of the Yaroslavl region, Mikhail Evraev, said that the electronic warfare system of the Slavneft-YANOS refinery had allegedly prevented the drone attack.

According to the company's official website, Slavneft-YANOS is one of Russia's ten largest oil companies in terms of oil production.

German concern to build a new factory to produce shells for Ukraine

Rheinmetall will build a new factory to produce shells for the Bundeswehr and the Ukrainian Armed Forces. The German company's CEO Armin Papperger said that the concern will build a new plant to speed up the pace of weapons production. The shells will also be supplied to Ukraine.

"A lot has changed for the better in military procurement. Last year, Rheinmetall alone received orders or framework agreements from the federal government worth more than €10bn for the Bundeswehr and Ukraine. This year, this amount will increase to at least €15bn," Papperger said.

He also rejected accusations of slow deliveries of shells.

"The pace is fast: what used to take 10 years is now achieved in a few months. We will now build a new ammunition factory in Germany in record time to create strategic security of supply," said Rheinmetall's CEO.

Ukrainian Defence Forces expand footholds on Dnipro's left bank

The Ukrainian military are expanding their footholds on the left bank of the Dnipro River, said Natalia Humeniuk, Operational Command South's press center head, at a briefing at the Media Centre Ukraine, Hromadske reports.

"We continue to fight for positions on the left bank, expanding our footholds. Obviously, Russian invaders are afraid of this activity. Therefore, amid the loss of some activity in assault operations (they had difficulties forming assault groups), they resumed them again," said Humeniuk.

Over the past day, she said, 105 Russian soldiers were confirmed killed.

Ukrainian Armed Forces deny Russia's capture of Tabaivka

Russia's boasting in its public media about the capture of Tabaivka is not true. This was emphasised by Volodymyr Fitio, head of Public Relations of the Land Forces Command.

"In Kupyansk district, the village of Krokhmalne is important for Russian troops because it is an image issue, they need to present at least some victory before the elections. Before the large-scale invasion, 45 people lived in Krokhmalne, and today there are no civilians there, the village is destroyed. The enemy presents this as a victory on a scale similar to the capture of Berlin. This is all the occupiers can boast of today," he commented.

According to him, the loss of Krokhmalne is not so important for Ukraine, because Ukrainian defenders have moved to more favourable positions.

"And the fact that the enemy is now boasting about Tabaivka in its publicity is not true. There are still hostilities there, so the enemy has not captured Tabaivka. Therefore, these minimal advances in this area are all the invaders have managed to do," said Volodymyr Fitio.

Khmelnytskyi NPP to become the most powerful in Europe

This year, construction of four more units at Khmelnytskyi NPP is scheduled to begin, two of which will be built using the modern American AP1000 technology. After that, this nuclear power plant will become the most powerful in Europe, said Ukrainian Energy Minister Herman Halushchenko. According to him, the construction of Khmelnytskyi NPP Units 3 and 4 has been planned for a long time, and the readiness of Unit 3 is currently quite high.

"We see this as a mechanism to compensate for the capacities of the occupied Zaporizhzhia NPP. We understand that we will definitely return this plant, it is a matter of time. The other question is in what condition we will return it and whether we will be able to put it back into operation immediately," Halushchenko said.

He also stressed that the Ukrainian side is working closely with the US-based Westinghouse on two projects: the construction of VVER-1000 units 3 and 4, as well as the construction of two more AR1000 reactors.

The AR1000 is a technology that has never been used in Ukraine or Europe. This is an American reactor type and a very powerful technology that, in particular, provides for new approaches to safety. For example, if in the event of a power outage the reactor is forced to switch to backup power and the diesel generator is also damaged, even in this case, the AR1000 can operate for 72 hours without any risk of accidents.

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