Day 224: Ukraine Reports More Gains in Kherson; Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Plant May Be Turned Back On

On Tuesday, Ukraine reported a flurry of gains in the newly annexed region of Kherson in the south of the country. A military official claimed via social media that forces had liberated eight settlements in the district of Beryslav in the north of the region.

Day 224: Ukraine Reports More Gains in Kherson; Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Plant May Be Turned Back On
Image credit: AP Photos [via AP News]

Facts

  • On Tuesday, Ukraine reported a flurry of gains in the newly annexed region of Kherson in the south of the country. A military official claimed via social media that forces had liberated eight settlements in the district of Beryslav in the north of the region.
  • Mounting Russian losses come as the country's Pres. Vladimir Putin on Wednesday approved the ratification of treaties to incorporate four annexed regions into the Russian Federation. Putin also named the existing heads of the regions as acting governors within the Russian political system.
  • Meanwhile, Petro Kotin, head of Ukraine's state-owned energy company Energoatom, said the organization is considering restarting operations at the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant (ZNPP), which has been under Russian control since the first days of the war. ZNPP's last reactor was switched off on Sept.11, after attacks on power supplies threatened a nuclear meltdown. Kotin said the plant may be reactivated to avoid equipment freezing in the winter cold.
  • Furthermore, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said on Wednesday that Ihor Murashov will no longer continue in his role as the head of the ZNPP. Murashov was reportedly abducted by Russian troops on Oct.1 before being released two days later. The news comes as IAEA head Rafael Grossi is to travel to Kiev and Moscow this week, as work to agree and implement a "protection zone" around the ZNPP continues.
  • Elsewhere, Ukrainian officials announced that the country has submitted an application for accelerated membership of the NATO military alliance, which has been signed by Pres. Volodymyr Zelenskyy and PM Denys Shmyhal. Last week, US national security adviser Jake Sullivan said Ukraine's NATO aspirations should be taken up "at a different time." It's not clear whether a fast-tracked approach will be accepted.
  • On the ground, Ukrainian officials reported five civilians were killed and six more were injured in Russian shelling in the Donetsk region over the last 24 hrs, while one civilian was killed and four more were injured in the Kharkiv region. Four people were injured in Zaporizhzhia and one was injured in Kherson. Russian shelling was also reported in the regions of Sumy, Mykolaiv, Dnipropetrovsk and Kiev but there were no additional reports of injures.

Sources: Pravda, Tass, Associated Press, and Ukrinform.

Narratives

  • Anti-Russia narrative, as provided by Lawfare. Russia's annexation of four Ukrainian territories in contravention of international law makes it clearer than ever - Ukraine needs to be armed, funded, and defended until it emerges triumphant over Russia. This is a moment of strategic clarity: a peace deal is now off the table and Ukraine must be supported by the US in its fight against Russia's illegal invasion.
  • Pro-Russia narrative, as provided by Tass. America's continuing supply of heavy weaponry to Ukraine is making it a direct participant in the conflict. Such provocations have to stop before we see an expansion of conflict – with many more deaths – between Russia and the West.

Predictions