The British Ministry of Defense said, on Sunday, that the poor performance of the Russian armed forces during its invasion of Ukraine appeared to lead to a change of leadership.
The ministry said General Alexander Vladimirovich Dvornikov, who had been assigned the general command of the operation in Ukraine, was dismissed from his post last week. In its assessment of the war, the ministry said that General Colonel Alexander Zhuravlev, who has been commanding Russia’s Western Military District since 2018, missed the Russian Navy’s day in St. Petersburg a week ago and is likely to have been replaced.
The ministry said that another general had been relieved of commanding the Southern Assembly forces.
“These separations were compounded by the deaths of at least 10 Russian generals on the battlefield in Ukraine,” the assessment said. “The cumulative effect on command consistency is likely to contribute to Russia’s tactical and operational difficulties.”
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District Governor Serhiy Heidi reports that five civilians were killed in recent Russian and separatist attacks on cities in the Donetsk region, a part of Donbass still under Ukrainian control.
Local officials say the city of Mykolaiv, an important shipbuilding center near Ukraine’s largest port in Odessa, now faces daily Russian bombing.
The Russian invasion that began on February 24 is “about to enter a new phase” in which fighting is shifting west and south along a 217-mile line stretching from near Zaporozhye to the Russian-occupied city of Kherson, the British Ministry of Defense. He said.
Four more shipments of grain were launched from the ports of Ukraine
Four more ships carrying agricultural goods suspended by the war in Ukraine have been given permission to leave the country’s ports on the Black Sea. The body overseeing an international deal aimed at taking 20 million tons of grain out of Ukraine to feed people in Africa, the Middle East and parts of Asia said the loaded ships were allowed to leave on Sunday. Ukraine, Russia, Turkey and the United Nations agreed last month to create a sea corridor that would allow cargo ships to travel safely from Ukraine’s southern coast.
“Every principle of nuclear safety was violated” at the Ukraine plant
Ukraine’s nuclear power plant operator Energoatom reported that Europe’s largest nuclear power plant, located in southeastern Ukraine, came under Russian fire late Saturday. The bombing of the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant damaged three radiation monitors and injured one worker.
Russian forces occupied the station for months. Rafael Grossi, director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency, recently said he is concerned about the way the plant is being run and that the fighting around it poses serious health and environmental threats.
“Every principle of nuclear safety has been violated” at the plant, Grossi said.
Ukrainian Amnesty International leader resigns in protest
The head of Amnesty International’s Ukraine branch resigned after the human rights organization released a report alleging that Ukrainian forces are putting civilians in danger by stationing themselves in populated areas. In a Facebook post, Oksana Pokalchuk accused Amnesty International of failing to learn the facts of the war in Ukraine and of ignoring advice from staff, who urged the group to review its report.
The report, which angered senior Ukrainian officials and Western researchers in international and military law, alleged that Ukrainian forces violated international humanitarian laws by setting up bases and operating weapons systems in schools, hospitals and other populated areas.
Pokalchuk claimed that the Ukrainian Defense Ministry was not given enough time to respond to the findings, describing the report as a “tool of Russian propaganda.” Russian forces defended attacks in civilian areas by suggesting that Ukrainian fighters establish firing positions at the target locations.
Contributing: Ella Lee, USA Today; Associated Press
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