Direct Russo-Ukrainian war: Kursk air base in Russia attacked, official Ukrainian claim; Canada continues Nord Stream sanctions

Summary and welcome

Hello and welcome back to the Guardian's live coverage of the war in Ukraine. I'm Samantha Lock and I'll be bringing you all the latest developments that have come to light over the next few hours.

A Russian air base in Kursk was reportedly attacked late on Wednesday, according to officials and local media reports. Footage circulating online shows a series of explosions rocking the city in western Russia at around 10pm local time.

As the offensive continues, Moscow says no "Christmas truce" is imminent with the fighting looking set to drag on over the winter.

Canada also said it would lift a sanctions waiver that allowed turbines for Nord Stream 1, Russia's largest gas pipeline to Europe, to be repaired in Montreal and returned to Germany.

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If you've just joined us, here are all the latest developments:

Russia has shut down any proposals for a "Christmas truce" in Ukraine, saying the topic is "off the agenda", according to Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy earlier this week called on G7 leaders to support a peace solution that would begin with the withdrawal of Russian troops from Ukraine, from this Christmas. "There is no calm on the front lines," he added in an evening video address.

The Ukrainian military said it shot down 13 Iranian-made drones over Kyiv and the surrounding region on Wednesday in Russia's first major drone attack on the capital in weeks. The attack damaged five buildings and authorities described the attack as a continuation of Russia's "energy terror" against the country. There were no casualties, a spokesperson for the Kyiv rescue service, Svitlana Vodolaga, told the Ukraine Suspilne news.

Russian drone attacks on Kyiv and the region around the Ukrainian capital on Wednesday did not damage any energy facilities, said national power grid operator Ukrenergo. "Thanks to the brilliant work of the air defense forces, the energy infrastructure facilities were not damaged - all 13 drones were shot down," Ukrenergo said on Telegram.

The regional administration building in the southern Ukrainian city of Kherson was also hit by several Russian rockets, according to a senior Ukrainian official. Kyrylo Tymoshenko, deputy head of Ukraine's presidential office, said the two-storey building in the newly liberated city's central square had been damaged, but that no one was reported injured. An unconfirmed video circulating on social media shows a huge plume of smoke rising from the top of the administration building.

The US is expected to decide whether to supply Ukraine with the advanced Patriot air defense system. US officials told CNN that the missiles could be delivered within days after Russia's repeated barrage of attacks on Ukrainian cities. The Patriot will be the most advanced surface-to-air missile system the west has provided Ukraine. The Washington Post also reported that the US plans to ship electronic equipment that converts unguided aerial munitions into smart bombs, enabling high levels of accurate targeting, citing US officials familiar with the matter.

Canada said it would lift a sanctions waiver that allowed turbines for Nord Stream 1, Russia's largest gas pipeline to Europe, to be repaired in Montreal and returned to Germany. The pipeline under the Baltic Sea closed for repairs on Aug. 31, but never restarted and in late September suffered a major leak. European governments suspect the burst of the pipeline and another called Nord Stream 2 was caused by sabotage. “Putin has been forced to demonstrate his intention never to return Nord Stream 1 to full operation, and that the pipeline itself has been rendered inoperable,” the foreign minister, MĂ©lanie Joly, said on Wednesday.

The war in Ukraine will continue "for some time to come", predicts White House national security spokesman John Kirby. Kirby said the scale of the ongoing violence made hopes for a speedy end to hostilities. "Given what we saw in the air and on the ground in Ukraine, it is difficult to conclude that this war will be over by the end of the year," Kirby said. “So there is active fighting going on right now. We hope that will continue for some time to come.

Russia faces a "critical shortage" of artillery shells and as a result Moscow's ability to conduct ground operations in Ukraine is "rapidly diminishing", the head of the British armed forces said. Admiral Sir Tony Radakin, chief of the defense staff, told an audience at the Royal United Services Institute thinktank on Wednesday that the Kremlin had only planned for a short time to conquer Ukraine, and instead found itself embroiled in a conflict that lasted nearly 10 months. . “Russia faces a critical shortage of artillery ammunition. This means their ability to conduct successful offensive ground operations is rapidly diminishing,” the army chief said.

A US citizen who was arrested by pro-Russian separatists in Ukraine in the summer has now been freed as part of a prisoner swap with Ukraine, said the head of Ukraine's presidential administration, Andriy Yermak. Suedi Murekezi, 35, was freed by the Russians along with 64 Ukrainian soldiers and the bodies of the four soldiers who died, Yermark said. Murekezi told the Guardian earlier this month that he felt "trapped" after he was released in the Russian-controlled city of Donetsk without his papers.

This article was written by EDUKASI CAMPUS. 

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