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Latest Developments in Ukraine: August 1


A local resident looks at a damaged residential building in Saltivka, a northern district of the second-largest Ukrainian city of Kharkiv on July 31, 2022, amid the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

For full coverage of the crisis in Ukraine, visit Flashpoint Ukraine.

The latest developments in the conflict between Russia and Ukraine. All times EDT.

11:30 p.m.: Anatoly Chubais, who resigned as a high-ranking adviser to Russian President Vladimir Putin and left Russia shortly after the invasion of Ukraine, was reported to be in intensive care in a European hospital for a neurological disorder, The Associated Press reported.

Although Chubais did not state his reason for resigning in March, it was presumed to be because of Russia's invasion of Ukraine on Feb. 24.

Although Chubais did not state his reason for resigning in March, it was presumed to be because of Russia's invasion of Ukraine on Feb. 24.

His was the highest-level of a series of official resignations. Chubais had most recently been Putin's envoy to international organizations on sustainable development. He is well-known in Russia, having held high-profile posts since the early 1990s, when he oversaw privatization efforts under Boris Yeltsin.

10:45 p.m.: The United States announced Monday a new tranche of weapons for Ukraine's forces fighting Russia, including ammunition for the increasingly important rocket launchers and artillery guns, Agence Frace-Presse reported.

The new $550 million package will "include more ammunition for the high mobility advanced rocket systems otherwise known as HIMARS, as well as ammunition" for artillery, National Security Council spokesman John Kirby told reporters.

This brings the total of military assistance committed to Ukraine since President Joe Biden took office to more than $8 billion, he said.

9 p.m.: The U.S. State Department approved the possible foreign military sale to the United Kingdom of Javelin Lightweight Command Launch units for an estimated cost of $300 million, the Pentagon said on Monday.

The U.K. government had requested to buy 513 Javelin Lightweight Command Launch Units, Reuters reported.

The principal contractor would be the Javelin Joint Venture, a joint venture of Lockheed Martin Corp and Raytheon Technologies Corp., the Pentagon said in a statement.

8:22 p.m.: U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Monday called Russia's actions around Ukraine's largest nuclear power plant "the height of irresponsibility," accusing Moscow of using it as a "nuclear shield" in attacks on Ukrainian forces, Reuters reported.

Russia was previously accused of firing shells dangerously close to the Zaporizhzhia plant in March as its forces took it over in the first weeks of its invasion of Ukraine.

Washington was "deeply concerned" that Moscow was now using the plant as a military base and firing on Ukrainian forces from around it, Blinken told reporters after nuclear nonproliferation talks at the United Nations in New York.

"Of course the Ukrainians cannot fire back lest there be a terrible accident involving the nuclear plant," he said.

The Russian mission to the United Nations in New York did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Blinken's remarks.

The International Atomic Energy Agency, the U.N.'s atomic watchdog, should be given access to the plant, Blinken said.

7:17 p.m.: Russia on Monday announced sanctions against 39 British politicians, officials, business people and journalists, barring them from entering Russia for supporting the "demonization" of the country.

Those targeted include opposition Labour Party leader Keir Starmer, former prime minister David Cameron and prominent TV journalists Piers Morgan, Robert Peston and Huw Edwards.

Their names are added to those of more than 200 other Britons whom Russia has already banned, including most of Britain's leading politicians.

6:25 p.m.: Correspondent Borys Sachalko spent time with the Ukrainian crew of a Grad rocket system on the front line in eastern Ukraine. Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty has this report.

5:15 p.m.: Poles on Monday marked the 78th anniversary of the Warsaw Uprising, a doomed 1944 revolt against Nazi German forces, with some including the president comparing the wartime Polish resistance to that of Ukrainians today fighting Russia’s invasion, The Associated Press reported.

People in Warsaw observed a minute of silence as a siren wailed at 5 p.m. to honor those who fought and died in the 1944 struggle that lasted 63 days and ended tragically for the Poles. That was the hour when the uprising began on Aug. 1, 1944, after five years of brutal Nazi occupation.

In the yearly ritual, people across Warsaw paused in their tracks, some holding flags or torches. A far-right organization led a march through the city that passed peacefully.

President Andrzej Duda visited an exhibition titled “Warsaw-Mariupol — cities of ruins, cities of struggle, cities of hope.” He recalled how the “Germans ruthlessly murdered civilians in the capital,” adding that “the Russian aggression against Ukraine is similarly ruthless today.”

The Warsaw Uprising was the largest act of resistance by any nation under the German occupation during World War II, and the heroism of the insurgents remains a defining element in Polish national identity.

4:20 p.m.: Against the backdrop of the war in Ukraine, Russia intensified its global battle to win support with an official trip to four African countries by its foreign minister, Sergey Lavrov. Elizabeth Cherneff narrates this report from the VOA Moscow Bureau.

3:30 p.m.: President Emmanuel Macron said on Monday that France was determined to make sure war crimes by Russian forces in Ukraine do not go unpunished, and will donate a mobile DNA lab to Kyiv authorities, Reuters reported.

After a phone call with his Ukrainian counterpart Volodymyr Zelenskyy, Macron also welcomed the departure of the first ship transporting grains from Odesa and said Europe will continue to help facilitating Ukrainian grain exports by sea and land.

2:30 p.m.:

1:55 p.m.: U.N. spokesman Stephane Dujarric told journalists at the daily press briefing what it was like to be talking with the team at the Joint Communication Center in Istanbul, Turkey, at the moment the ship carrying the first cargo of Ukrainian grain moved out from the Black Sea port of Odesa Monday, under a recently negotiated agreement between Russia and Ukraine, VOA’s U.N. correspondent Margaret Besheer reported.

"We had some dramatic moments early this morning, very early in the morning here in the U.S.,” Dujarric said.

“I was on the phone with colleagues in Istanbul,” he recounted. “Everybody’s eyes were glued basically to a video screen with a dot, watching it move and watching that that ship moved out. When our colleagues saw that video of the ship moving out, it was a very emotional moment and cheering broke out in the operations center.”

“It also bears saying, there has been an extremely professional atmosphere with the four parties [Ukraine, Russia, Turkey and UN] represented in Istanbul. Everyone speaking the same technical and maritime language, and we very much hope that will continue," Dujarric said.

1:30 p.m.:

1:05 p.m.: The United Nations chief warned the world Monday that “humanity is just one misunderstanding, one miscalculation away from nuclear annihilation,” The Associated Press reported.

Secretary-General Antonio Guterres gave the dire warning at the opening of the long-delayed high-level meeting to review the landmark 50-year-old treaty aimed at preventing the spread of nuclear weapons and eventually achieving a nuclear-free world.

He cited especially the war in Ukraine and the threat of nuclear weapons to conflicts in the Middle East and Asia, two regions “edging towards catastrophe.”

Guterres told many ministers, officials and diplomats attending the month-long conference to review the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty that the meeting is taking place “at a critical juncture for our collective peace and security” and “at a time of nuclear danger not seen since the height of the Cold War.”

“All this at a time when the risks of proliferation are growing and guardrails to prevent escalation are weakening,” he said, “And when crises -- with nuclear undertones -- are festering from the Middle East and the Korean Peninsula to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.”

12:40 p.m.:

12:00 p.m.: European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen has warned that Europe must prepare for the "worst situation" with regard to Russian gas supplies, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty reported.

"Since Russia has already completely or partially cut off gas supplies to 12 [EU] member countries, we must all prepare for the worst situation," von der Leyen told El Mundo, a Spanish-language newspaper.

Russia has suspended gas deliveries to several EU countries for their refusal to pay for delivery in rubles, a demand that European countries have said is linked to Kremlin attempts to ease the impact of Western sanctions on Russia over its full-scale invasion of Ukraine.

Russia has also lowered deliveries of gas to Germany through the Nord Stream 1 pipeline over a maintenance issue that Germany has said has been manufactured by Russia as retaliation for Western sanctions.

11:15 a.m.: U.N. World Food Program Executive Director David Beasley on Monday welcomed the news that a ship carrying Ukrainian grain has left the Black Sea port of Odesa for the first time since a deal was brokered between Russia and Ukraine to allow safe passage of grain shipments.

10:50 a.m.: Rising concern over the impact of a potential Russian gas cutoff is fueling the debate in Germany over whether the country should switch off its last three nuclear power plants as planned at the end of this year, The Associated Press reported.

The door to some kind of extension appeared to open a crack after the Economy Ministry in mid-July announced a new “stress test” on the security of electricity supplies. It’s supposed to take into account a tougher scenario than a previous test, concluded in May, that found supplies were assured.

Since then, Russia has reduced natural gas supplies through the Nord Stream 1 pipeline to Germany to 20% of capacity amid tensions over the war in Ukraine. It cited technical issues that Germany says are only an excuse for a political power play. Russia recently has accounted for about a third of Germany’s gas supply, and there are concerns it could turn off the tap altogether.

“A lot speaks for not switching off the safe and climate-friendly nuclear power plants, but if necessary using them until 2024,” Finance Minister Christian Lindner, the Free Democrats’ leader, told Sunday’s Bild am Sonntag newspaper. He called for Economy Minister Robert Habeck, who is responsible for energy, to stop the use of gas to generate electricity.

10:35 a.m.:

10:15 a.m.: The International Rescue Committee on Monday welcomed the first grain shipment to leave Ukraine since Russia invaded in late February, saying in a statement that it is the first step in providing relief for the dire global hunger crisis.

“I was relieved to see this shipment leave Odessa this morning. This is the first of many lifelines needed to ease the global food crisis and help the millions of people at risk of starving around the world,” Marysia Zapasnik, Ukraine Country Director at the IRC, said. “However, we cannot forget that this blockade should never have happened in the first place. Preventing food from leaving Ukraine has hurt the hungry, especially those suffering a looming famine in East Africa, where many are already dying of hunger, most of them children.”

“Now, these shipments must be guaranteed consistent safe passage – something we are particularly concerned about given Odessa port has been attacked twice just in the last week,” Zapasnik said. “The international community must ensure regular and predictable food shipments urgently reach those on the brink of starvation and that Ukraine’s farmers are able to safely grow and transport crops to the ports.”

9:50 a.m.:

9:25 a.m.: Russian lawmakers on Monday introduced a bill to the lower house of the country's parliament banning the adoption of Russian children by citizens of "unfriendly countries," Reuters reported.

"Sending our children to be raised in 'unfriendly countries' is a blow to the future of the nation," the bill's authors wrote.

Russia's list of unfriendly countries was expanded after many nations imposed sanctions in response to Russia's deployment of troops to Ukraine in February. It currently includes the United States, United Kingdom, all European Union member states, as well as Japan and South Korea.

8:50 a.m.:

8:35 a.m.: News that his ship would be allowed to leave the Ukrainian port of Odesa carrying grain was the "best feeling" of the year, a joyful crew member said on Monday, adding he was worried about mines, Reuters reported.

"It was a great feeling," junior engineer Abdullah Jendi, from Syria, said. "Everyone on the ship was very happy. I can say that it was the best feeling we have had in 2022." The Sierra Leone-flagged Razoni left Odesa bound for Lebanon on Monday with 27,000 metric tons of grain. The ship will pass through the Bosphorus Strait on Tuesday.

"To be honest, I am scared from the fact that there are naval mines," Jendi said. "This is the only thing that I fear during this trip, as for the other things, we are used to them as sailors." He said of being able to leave: "It's a great feeling, I haven't seen my family in over a year because of my work at sea."

"Both sides at war will lose, even the victor of war will have lost because of the human and material losses,” Jendi said. "In my opinion, the people of Ukraine don't deserve this because they are good and peaceful people."

8:20 a.m.:

8:10 a.m.: Pope Francis will attend a meeting of religious leaders in Kazakhstan in September, the Vatican said on Monday, according to Reuters. It is a gathering where he has said previously he hoped to meet with the Russian Orthodox patriarch, who backs the war in Ukraine.

Francis is set to be in the capital Nur-Sultan from September 13-15 to attend the VII Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions, the Vatican said.

The pope has said in several recent interviews that he hopes to meet in the Kazakh capital with patriarch Kirill, who has given his full-throated backing to Russia's invasion of Ukraine, which began on February 24.

Francis had planned to meet Kirill on June 14 in Jerusalem but cancelled that meeting on the advice of Vatican diplomats.

7:55 a.m.: The U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UN OCHA) has released its latest report on Ukraine, saying on Twitter Monday that continuing hostilities have increased the toll on civilians across Ukraine.

7:45 a.m.: A new poll shows that 79% of Ukrainians support a visa regime with Russia, the Kyiv Independent reported Monday on Twitter.

“According to a survey conducted by the Kyiv International Institute of Sociology from July 6-20, most Ukrainians agree that the border should remain closed between Ukraine and Russia,” the news organization reported.

7:30 a.m.: The life of Viktor Bout, the Russian arms dealer jailed in the United States and linked to a possible swap for two U.S. citizens detained by Moscow, sometimes reads like a far-fetched spy thriller, Reuters reported.

Variously dubbed “the merchant of death” and “the sanctions buster” for his ability to get around arms embargoes, Bout, 55, was one of the world’s most wanted men prior to his 2008 arrest on multiple charges related to arms trafficking.

For almost two decades, Bout became the world’s most notorious arms dealer, selling weaponry to rogue states, rebel groups and murderous warlords in Africa, Asia and South America.

His notoriety was such that his life helped inspire a Hollywood film, 2005’s Lord of War, starring Nicholas Cage as Yuri Orlov, an arms dealer loosely based on Bout.

7:10 a.m.:

6:50 a.m.: Ukraine is launching a portal to trace Ukrainian children affected by Russia's war, the Kyiv Independent reported Monday on Twitter.

“Called "Children of War," the platform aims to help parents and law enforcement collect information about children killed by the war, and those who went missing or were forcibly deported to Russia,” the news organization said.

6:45 a.m.: In Moscow, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov hailed the departure of the first ship carrying Ukrainian grain from the port of Odesa as “very positive,” saying it would help test the “efficiency of the mechanisms that were agreed during the talks in Istanbul,” The Associated Press reported.

Russia and Ukraine signed separate agreements with Turkey and the U.N. clearing the way for Ukraine — one of the world’s key breadbaskets — to export 22 million tons of grain and other agricultural goods that have been stuck in Black Sea ports because of Russia’s invasion.

The deals also allow Russia to export grain and fertilizers.

6:05 a.m.: NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg on Monday welcomed the first commercial shipment of grain from Odesa, Ukraine, which is the result of a U.N.-brokered negotiation.

5:15 a.m.: The first ship carrying grain to leave Ukraine under a safe passage agreement will anchor off the coast of Istanbul around 1200 GMT on Tuesday for a joint inspection, Turkish Defence Minister Hulusi Akar said on Monday, according to Reuters.

Akar was speaking in an interview with Turkey's state-owned Anadolu news agency after the Sierra Leone-flagged ship Razoni, which is loaded with corn, left the Ukrainian port of Odesa for Lebanon.

As part of the agreement, a Joint Coordination Centre was set up in Istanbul with personnel from the United Nations, Russia, Ukraine and Turkey.

4:25 a.m.: The first shipment of Ukrainian grain left the port of Odessa on Monday morning, Turkey announced, according to Agence France-Presse.

"The ship Razoni has left the port of Odessa bound for Tripoli in Lebanon," the Turkish ministry said in a statement. "It is expected in Istanbul on August 2. It will then continue its journey after it has been inspected in Istanbul," the statement added.

Other convoys would follow, respecting the maritime corridor and the agreed formalities, it said. The Joint Coordination Centre, the organization overseeing the grain exports, said the Razoni is carrying "over 26,000 metric tons" of maize.

The blockage of deliveries from warring Russia and Ukraine -- two of the world's biggest grain exporters -- has contributed to soaring food prices, hitting the world's poorest nations especially hard. Last month both sides signed a landmark deal with Turkey and the United Nations aimed at relieving the global food crisis.

4:05 a.m.: Ukraine’s Minister of Foreign Affairs expressed relief Monday on Twitter that the first shipment of grain has left the port of Odesa since the start of Russia’s invasion in late February.

3:57 a.m.

The United Nations' Secretary-General “welcomes” the departure of the first commercial vessel leaving Ukraine’s port of Odesa since Feb. 26, 2022, according to a statement posted by the spokesperson for the secretary-general.

The ship, bound for the port of Tripoli, Lebanon, is carrying 26,527 metric tons of corn, and is the first ship to depart under the Black Sea Grain Initiative to get grain to markets all over the world.

“The Secretary-General hopes that this will be the first of many commercial ships moving in accordance with the Initiative signed, and that this will bring much-needed stability and relief to global food security especially in the most fragile humanitarian contexts,” said the statement.

2:50 a.m.:

UkraineWorld shares image of Azovstal defenders' families calling on international organizations to rescue Ukrainian POWs.

2:43 a.m.:

2:31 a.m.:

1:30 a.m.: Britain's defense ministry said Monday that Russian forces had made only slow progress during the previous four days as they tried tactical assaults in the area northeast of Donetsk. The ministry said Russia is also likely shifting "a significant number of its forces" from the northern part of the Donbas region in eastern Ukraine to southern Ukraine.

12:10 a.m.: Britain will now require foreign companies holding U.K. property to identify their true owners in an official register, the government said on Monday, as part of a crackdown on Russian oligarchs and corrupt elites laundering illicit wealth.

The "Register of Overseas Entities" is part of a wider economic crime law enacted this year in an effort to stop the flow of illicit Russian cash into London following Moscow's invasion of Ukraine.

Foreign entities that own land in the U.K. that is within the scope of the register will have six months to comply by identifying their beneficial owner to Companies House.

The register will apply to property bought since January 1999 in England and Wales, and since December 2014 in Scotland.

Those not complying with the new rules could face sanctions including fines of up to $3,043 per day or five years in prison.

Some information in this report came from Agence France-Presse, The Associated Press and Reuters.