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Day 186 Roundup: Zaporizhizhia Fighting Continues; Russian Recruitment Unlikely to Impact War, Says UK

    Day 186 Roundup: Zaporizhizhia Fighting Continues; Russian Recruitment Unlikely to Impact War, Says UK
    Last updated: 3 months ago
    Image credit: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-62705001

    Facts

    • Ukrainian and Russian officials have confirmed that there so far have been no increased levels of radiation at the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant following the latest rounds of shelling. [1]
    • Ukraine and Russia have exchanged blame for shelling the plant over the last few weeks. On Sun., Moscow claimed a pipeline had been damaged after at least nine missiles were launched. Defence Ministry spokesperson Igor Konashenkov said three missiles landed at sites storing nuclear and radioactive waste. The claims couldn't be independently verified. [1]
    • This comes as fighting near the plant reportedly continued overnight, with artillery barrages striking towns, ammunition dumps and a Russian military base, according to Ukrainian officials. [1]
    • Elsewhere, Ukraine claimed that Russia shelling in the city of Sloviansk had damaged a residential building and school on Sunday. This couldn't be independently verified. [2]
    • Meanwhile, Russia claimed to have destroyed a large ammunition depot in Ukraine's Dnipropetrovsk region containing US-made HIMARS rocket systems and shells for M777 Howitzers. The Russia air force also claimed on Sat. to have shot down a Mig-29 plane in Donetsk and destroyed weapons depots in Donetsk, Mykolaiv and Kherson. [1]
    • This comes as the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) has questioned Russia's recruitment decree to increase its armed forces from 1.9M to 2.04M, issued last week. The MoD said it is unclear how this will be achieved, but it is unlikely to substantially increase Moscow's combat power. [3]
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    Spin

    Anti-Russia narrative

    This invasion is an egregious violation of international law. Putin's ultimate aim is to restore the Soviet empire, even if it takes massive bloodshed and false pretexts such as calling the 2014 Ukrainian revolution after an election a "coup". This unprovoked attack is the latest chapter in Putin's Orwellian attempt to rewrite history.

    Pro-Russia narrative

    NATO and the US have ignored Russia's security concerns by breaking its promise not to expand eastward in return for German reunification. These concerns are legitimate and taking them seriously would have avoided the Ukraine tragedy.

    Nerd narrative

    There's a 10% chance there will be a bilateral cease-fire or peace agreement between Ukraine and Russia by Dec. 31, 2022, according to the Metaculus prediction community.

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