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Latest Developments in Ukraine: Oct. 1


A Ukrainian police officer walks past bags containing the bodies of people who died in a Russian missile attack, in the city of Zaporizhzhia, Ukraine, Sept. 30, 2022. Russia now claims territories it holds in Ukraine's Zaporizhzhia region as its own.

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

The latest developments in Russia’s war on Ukraine. All times EDT.

10:07 p.m.: Italy's Eni said it would not receive any of the gas it had ordered from Russia's Gazprom for delivery this weekend, although the firms said they were working to fix this, Reuters reported.

Russian gas supplies through the Tarvisio entry point will be at zero for Oct. 1, Eni, the biggest importer of Russian gas in Italy, said in a statement on its website Saturday.

The Italian group later added that it would not receive any of the requested imports for Sunday, and that the situation was expected to remain the same into Monday.

Moscow and several European countries, including Germany, have been at loggerheads over the supply of natural gas from Russia since the country's invasion of Ukraine in February.

8:39 p.m.: Bulgaria opened a natural gas link with Greece at a ceremony Saturday attended by the leader of the European Union's executive arm, who emphasized the bloc's determination to stop relying on Russian energy imports, The Associated Press reported.

Speaking at a ceremony in Sofia, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen hailed the pipeline as an important contribution to limiting opportunities for Russia to use its gas and oil reserves to blackmail or punish the EU.

“This pipeline changes the energy security situation for Europe. This project means freedom,“ von der Leyen told an audience that included heads of state and government from the region.

The European Commission committed nearly 250 million euros to finance the project, she said.

The importance of the Gas Interconnector Greece-Bulgaria pipeline, which was completed in July, has risen significantly after Moscow decided to turn its natural gas deliveries into a political weapon.

A second European pipeline started operating Saturday when fuel flowed through the new Baltic Pipe, which was built to carry gas from Norway's North Sea deposits through Denmark and across the Baltic seabed to a compressor station in northwestern Poland. It's full capacity is expected to be reached next year.

7:40 p.m.: Germany will deliver the first of four advanced IRIS-T air defense systems to Ukraine in the coming days to help ward off drone attacks, its defense minister Christine Lambrecht said during an unannounced visit to Odesa, Reuters reported.

As air raid sirens sounded in the port city above, Lambrecht held talks with her Ukrainian counterpart Oleksii Reznikov in an underground bunker. Lambrecht had extended a visit to nearby Moldova for the meeting.

"In a few days, we will deliver the very modern IRIS-T air defense system," she told ARD television. "It is very important for drone defense in particular."

Ukraine has been seeing more attacks from Iranian-made kamikaze drones in recent weeks, costing lives and causing serious damage to infrastructure.

7:08 p.m.:

6:53 p.m.: Russia failed to win enough votes for re-election to the United Nation's aviation agency's governing council on Saturday, in a rebuke of Moscow for aviation-related actions taken after its invasion of Ukraine, Reuters reported.

Russia fell short of the 86 votes needed to stay on the International Civil Aviation Organization's (ICAO) 36-nation governing council, during the agency's assembly which runs through Oct. 7 in Montreal.

The voting results set off a procedural review on Saturday, after a challenge by Russia for an additional vote. Poppy Khoza, assembly president and South Africa's director general of civil aviation, called the circumstances "unprecedented."

"When we have votes in our countries, if we don't like the result, we don't ask for another vote," the French representative told the assembly.

Russia, along with the G-7, China, Brazil and Australia, held spots as "states of chief importance in air transport" on ICAO's 36-member council.

The vote holds Russia to account for violating Ukraine's sovereign airspace, like bombing airports, that go against a key 1944 agreement that sets out core principles for global aviation, argued Yuliya Kovaliv, Ukraine's ambassador to Canada.

6:07 p.m.: U.N. nuclear watchdog chief Rafael Grossi is expected to hold talks in Moscow and Kyiv next week on the creation of a protection zone around the Russian-held Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant (ZNPP) in Ukraine, the watchdog said, according to Reuters.

"Director General Grossi continues his consultations and other efforts aimed at agreeing and implementing a nuclear safety and security zone around the ZNPP as soon as possible. He is expected to travel to Kyiv and Moscow next week," the International Atomic Energy Agency said in a statement.

5:15 p.m.: Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan renewed his threat to block the NATO bids of Sweden and Finland, saying he would not give his approval until the two Nordic countries kept promises he said were made to Ankara, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty reported.

"Until the promises made to our country are upheld, we will maintain our principled position," Erdogan said in a speech to parliament in Ankara.

"We are closely following whether the promises made by Sweden and Finland are kept or not, and of course, the final decision will be up to our great parliament," he added without elaboration.

Ankara initially said it would veto the two countries' membership in the Western alliance, with Erdogan accusing them of providing havens for Kurdish militants operating in Turkey and for promoting what he called "terrorism."

Following negotiations, Erdogan said he would drop his objections but indicated he could still block their membership bids if they failed to follow through on promises, some of which were undisclosed.

4:27 p.m.:

3:15 p.m.: Belarus is preparing to receive Russian soldiers and equipment, The Kyiv Independent reports.

Belarus' Defense Ministry’s Intelligence Directorate said the country is preparing to welcome up to 20,000 Russian soldiers. It said there are currently about 1,000 Russian soldiers in Belarus.

2:55 p.m.: Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said fighting was continuing in the key city of Lyman, which Russia said earlier in the day its troops had withdrawn from to avoid getting trapped.

“The Ukrainian flag is already in Lyman in the Donetsk region. Fighting is still going on there,” Zelenskyy said in his nightly video address.

1:50 p.m.: After Russia failed to win enough votes for re-election to the United Nation’s aviation agency’s governing council, Reuters reports, the French representative told the assembly: “When we have votes in our countries, if we don’t like the result, we don’t ask for another vote.”

Russia closed its airspace to airlines from 36 countries, including all 27 members of the European Union, in response to Ukraine-related sanctions targeting its aviation sector following Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine. Russia, along with the G-7, China, Brazil and Australia, held spots as “states of chief importance in air transport” on ICAO’s 36-member council.

“We’d like to express regret regarding the outcome of the voting,” the Russian representative said. “We view this as a purely political step and has nothing to do with Russia’s position in the field of civil aviation.”

12:30 p.m.: Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov said Saturday that Russia should consider using low-yield nuclear weapons after Moscow's troops were forced out of a key city in eastern Ukraine, Agence France-Presse reports.

“In my personal opinion, more drastic measures should be taken, up to the declaration of martial law in the border areas and use of low-yield nuclear weapons,” Kadyrov said on his Telegram channel. He said that there is “no place for nepotism in the army” and called Colonel-General Alexander Lapin, who is in charge of Russia's forces fighting in the region, “mediocre.”

He said Lapin did not provide the “necessary communication, interaction and supply of ammunition” to pro-Russian troops in Lyman, a city in Ukraine's eastern Donetsk region that Moscow annexed a day earlier. Russia said it was withdrawing troops from Lyman Saturday after capturing it in May.

11:15 a.m.: Ukrainian officials said Russian forces killed at least 20 people, including 10 children, in an attack on a convoy carrying people fleeing northeastern Ukraine. The attack could not be independently verified.

It follows a missile strike on another civilian convoy in Ukraine's Zaporizhzhia region on Friday in which 30 people were killed and scores were wounded.

Britain’s Defense Ministry said Saturday the missile used in Friday’s attack “was likely a Russian long-range air defense missile being used in a ground attack role.”

10:30 a.m.: Russian troops have pulled out of the city of Lyman in eastern Ukraine, according to a statement from the Russia’s defense ministry. It said its troops were withdrawn after the “threat of encirclement.” Ukraine forces on Saturday surrounded and entered the eastern city, where Russia’s forces had more than 5,000 soldiers.

9:56 a.m.: Ukraine's defense ministry said Saturday its forces were “entering” the key city of Lyman in the eastern Donetsk region that Russia annexed a day earlier, Agency France-Presse reports.

"Ukrainian Air Assault Forces are entering Lyman, Donetsk region,” the ministry said on Twitter, posting a video of soldiers holding up a yellow and blue Ukrainian flag near a sign with the city's name.

Lyman lies in the north of Ukraine's Donetsk region, which Moscow annexed despite only controlling part of it.

7:55 a.m.: Ukraine said Saturday it encircled several thousand Russian troops near a key city in one of the four Moscow-held territories that President Vladimir Putin annexed a day earlier, despite condemnation from Kyiv and the West, Agence France-Presse reports. Ukrainian forces were on the doorstep of the city of Lyman in Ukraine's Donetsk region, which Moscow's forces pummeled for weeks to capture this spring.

Ukraine's army said Saturday that it had "encircled" a Russian grouping near the city, estimating it to be around 5,000 troops.

5:29 a.m.: In its latest Ukraine assessment, the Institute for the Study of War, a U.S. think tank, said Russian troops continued ground assaults in Donetsk Oblast. Russian authorities continued efforts to coerce Russian participation in mobilization efforts, but will likely struggle to coerce participation as Russians continue to flee Russia for border states who welcome them. In addition, the update said, Russian officials are accepting bribes and engaging in other preferential treatment to prevent or ease the economic burden of mobilization on the wealthy.

4:31 a.m.: The latest intelligence update from the U.K. defense ministry said Russia is expending strategically valuable military assets in attempts to achieve tactical advantage and in the process is killing civilians it now claims are its own citizens. The update cited the recent attack on Zaporizhzhia that officials say killed 25 civilians.

3:27 a.m.: The Russian Consulate in New York was vandalized with red spray paint early Friday, in an apparent protest as President Vladimir Putin pursues his bloody invasion of Ukraine, Agence France-Presse reported.

Officers said they responded to an emergency call just after 1:30 am that reported paint sprayed across the facade of the consulate on Manhattan's Upper East Side.

A police spokesperson said the investigation was ongoing into the potential "bias incident" and no arrests had been made.

The bright red paint appeared hours before Putin announced he was annexing four parts of Ukraine occupied by his army.

2:30 a.m.: One of two American veterans released from Russian captivity after being captured in Ukraine says they both prayed for death during the brutal ride to freedom, The Associated Press reported. Alex Drueke says he and fellow Alabamian Andy Huynh endured three months of captivity that included execution threats, physical torture, solitary confinement and food deprivation. But he says the final 24 hours were the toughest because of mental and emotional torture.

1:26 a.m.: Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said on Friday that his country's military had achieved "significant results" in the east and mentioned Lyman, a Russian-occupied stronghold that pro-Moscow forces are struggling to keep control of, Reuters reported.

Ukraine's defense ministry said earlier its troops had captured the village of Drobysheve, some 10 km (six miles) to the north west of Lyman, in the eastern Donetsk region.

Lyman has been at the center of renewed fighting since Ukraine routed Russian forces in the nearby Kharkiv region in a lightning counteroffensive this month.

"We have significant results in the east of our country ... everyone has heard what is happening in Lyman," Zelenskyy said in a video address.

12:02 a.m.: An investigation by RFE/RL journalists shows connections between the metallurgical empire of Vladimir Lisin, one of Russia's richest oligarchs, and Russia's military industries. According to an NGO that monitors Russian state contracts, one of his companies did business with a state-run institute involved in the development of nuclear weapons. Lisin's company issued a statement to RFE/RL denying its products could be used for military purposes. Unlike many of Russia's rich and politically connected industrialists, Lisin and his companies have not been sanctioned by the European Union, the United States, Britain, or even Ukraine.

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

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