Day 259: Fighting Intensifies in Kherson; Grain Deal in Question Amid Russian Criticism

According to multiple reports on Wednesday, fighting has intensified in the southern region of Kherson. Kirill Stremousov, the Russian-appointed deputy governor of Kherson, said Ukrainian attacks came in "quite large columns" in three directions [...]

Day 259: Fighting Intensifies in Kherson; Grain Deal in Question Amid Russian Criticism
Image credit: AP Photos [via AP News]

Facts

  • According to multiple reports on Wednesday, fighting has intensified in the southern region of Kherson. Kirill Stremousov, the Russian-appointed deputy governor of Kherson, said Ukrainian attacks came in "quite large columns" in three directions and alleged that "several hundred" advancing troops were killed.
  • According to a Ukrainian military account from Operational Command South, Russia lost 55 soldiers, four tanks, and a number of other weapons in Ukrainian strikes. Kiev also claimed to have destroyed two ammunition depots. Neither Russian or Ukrainian reports of military losses could be independently confirmed.
  • Ukrainian officials further reported that one civilian was killed and one more was injured in Russian attacks in Ukrainian-held parts of Kherson.
  • In addition, a Russian attack was reported in the city of Dnipro in Dnipropetrovsk where drones targeted the warehouses of a logistics business, setting off a large fire. Four injured employees were taken to hospital and three remain in critical condition, according to local officials. Nikopol and Marhanets in Dnipropetrovsk were also subject to attacks — there were no reports of civilian casualties at this stage.
  • Heavy fighting also continued in the Donetsk region — namely near Bakhmut, Avdiivka and Vuhledar. Ukrainian officials reported that three civilians were killed and 11 were injured in Russian attacks, adding that the bodies of three civilians who'd been killed earlier were also discovered. Officials from the Donetsk People's Republic reported that two civilians were killed and two others were injured in Ukrainian attacks.
  • Meanwhile, although Russia has returned to the grain deal brokered by Turkey and the UN, the agreement's future remains in question as Russian officials have continued to criticize the deal's implementation so far. Andrey Rudenko, Russia’s deputy foreign minister, said: "We are very dissatisfied with how the Russian part is being implemented." The deal is set to expire on Nov. 18, but many nations are hopeful that it will be renewed.
  • Elsewhere, Ukrainian Pres. Volodymyr Zelenskyy on Tuesday sent Ukraine's parliament — the Verkhovna Rada — two draft laws to extend the deadlines of mobilization and martial law. MP Yaroslav Zhelezniak told Ukrainian media that the bills would be approved at the next plenary session and that the measures would likely be extended to Feb. 19, 2023.

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

Narratives

  • Pro-establishment narrative, as provided by Japan Forward. Russia is weaponizing food insecurity at a cost to innocent people in Africa and the Middle East. This is an inhumane violation of human rights that is utterly unacceptable on the world stage. The West must do something about how easily the Kremlin can unilaterally break treaties.
  • Pro-Russia narrative, as provided by Tass. It is Western nations that are undermining this agreement. Russia — a key global supplier of fertilizer and other foodstuffs — hasn't seen sufficient evidence of progress in implementing the Russian parts of the deal, namely the easing of sanctions on Russian food exports. Why should it return to the deal if its terms aren't being fairly implemented?

Predictions