Espreso. Global

Victorious news of 608th day of war: Russian fleet leaves Crimea amid safety concerns, Ukrainian unmanned boats threaten Sevastopol

24 October, 2023 Tuesday

FSB agents “hunting” for ABRAMS tanks near Avdiivka get caught, Russian Black Sea Fleet gradually flees temporarily occupied Crimea, Ukrainian warships sail near Sevastopol

The Russian fleet is gradually leaving Crimea

Russia's Black Sea Fleet is gradually leaving the temporarily occupied Crimea, and pro-Ukrainian sentiment on the peninsula is becoming more and more noticeable.

This was stated by President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, in his speech at the Second Parliamentary Summit of the Crimean Platform.

"We are now actively working towards our goal, which is the de-occupation of Crimea, more than ever in the almost ten years since Russia's hybrid and then full-scale aggression began. The situation in Crimea is the best illustration of our progress. The Russian military fleet can no longer effectively operate in the western Black Sea and is gradually leaving Crimea," said Zelenskyy.

He emphasized that thanks to the actions of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, the occupiers no longer have a secure base or a reliable logistical route in Crimea and the occupied Black Sea and Azov coast areas.

Zelenskyy also mentioned that pro-Ukrainian sentiments in Crimea are becoming more evident, even though Russia still controls the region. 

Explosions in Sevastopol: Russia blames Ukrainian unmanned boats 

On the night of 24 October, explosions and shooting were heard in Sevastopol. Russian-installed authorities reported an alleged attack by three Ukrainian unmanned boats. 

The Crimean Wind Telegram channel reported loud explosions at 3:35 a.m. and 3:40 a.m. in Sevastopol. At the same time, the sounds of shooting were heard. The Russian Defense Ministry reported that it had allegedly spotted three unmanned boats of the Ukrainian Navy in the northern part of the Black Sea.

Natalia Humeniuk, spokesperson for the Southern Defense Forces, also commented on the situation. She said that the Ukrainian Armed Forces are trying to destroy the potential of the Russian army as much as possible and that fighting is also taking place on the territory of annexed Crimea, Krym.Realii informs.

"They feel more in Ukraine, realizing that we are fighting for our territories, and that Crimea is Ukraine, and there are hostilities there. Even when it seems to them that it is quite calm there, and their air defense is working. In fact, the situation on the Ukrainian side is coordinated in such a way that our task at this stage is to destroy Russia's potential as much as possible - everything that they can still use," emphasized Humeniuk.

FSB agents “hunting” for ABRAMS tanks near Avdiivka neutralized

The Security Service of Ukraine neutralised an FSB agent group that was reconnoitering the positions and movements of Ukrainian troops in the Avdiivka direction. 

The group consisted of two residents of the Pokrovsk district, who acted separately from each other and were controlled by a common contact from the temporarily occupied territory. 

These agents were trying to collect information about the Ukrainian Armed Forces' movements in the Avdiivka area, particularly the positions of Ukrainian artillery and the routes of heavy armored vehicles, including ABRAMS tanks. They also sent the locations of Ukrainian checkpoints and fortifications to the aggressors, who needed this information for planning their own military actions, including targeted drone and missile strikes on Ukrainian troops. These agents were paid for each task they completed with money deposited into their bank cards.

The detained criminals face life imprisonment. 

Ukraine will receive a recommendation to start negotiations on EU membership

On November 8, Ukraine is set to receive a crucial report from the European Commission, which will assess Ukraine's readiness to start negotiations on its potential EU membership. According to Rueter’s three sources within the EU, on November 8, the EU's executive body, the European Commission, is set to release a report evaluating Ukraine's compliance with the criteria necessary for seeking membership. This report will serve as a pivotal moment for the 27-nation bloc to determine whether it is ready to start accession negotiations with Kyiv.

"Kyiv is expected to get a positive recommendation, possibly under additional conditions related to fighting graft and the rights of minorities, the latter issue having been raised by Hungary," the article says.

On December 14-15, the EU summit will decide whether to start membership talks with Ukraine, which are important for Kyiv in the conflict with Russia. The summit is also expected to approve a new EU budget. The European Commission proposes to allocate EUR 50 billion to support Ukraine until 2027. 

Investing in Ukraine is investing in a future EU member

The German Chancellor promises to increase funding for Ukraine. Olaf Scholz said he wants to put the EU's support for Kyiv on a sustainable basis by the end of the year to help Kyiv on its way to joining the bloc.

"The "Ukraine facility" would bundle grants, loans, private and public investments alongside the grants Ukraine already had access to as a candidate for EU accession," Reuters quotes Scholz as saying.

At a forum in Berlin aimed at encouraging German businesses to invest in Ukraine, Scholz said that despite the war, more than 2,000 German companies are already operating in the country.“Anyone who invests in Ukraine now is investing in a future EU member state that will be part of our legal order and our internal market," the Chancellor added, reminding that a conference on the reconstruction of Ukraine will be held in Berlin in June.

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