The Russian Defense Ministry said Saturday that its air defenses shot down at least two missiles fired at the Crimean Bridge and foiled a drone attack on the Crimean Peninsula. The bridge serves as the main link between Russia and Crimea, which Russia illegally annexed from Ukraine in 2014.
The Ukrainian military said early Sunday that Russian forces had launched seven missiles, 47 airstrikes and 43 rocket attacks on the country over the past day, resulting in civilian deaths and the destruction of infrastructure.
Here’s the latest on the war and its ripple effects across the globe.
Russia’s account Saturday that it had intercepted 20 drones over the Crimean Peninsula marked the third straight day that officials had reported thwarting such an attack. Moscow blamed Kyiv for the assault. Ukraine has not officially claimed responsibility but has suggested that attacks on Russia and occupied territory should be expected.
Civilians, including children, were killed in strikes in Ukraine on Saturday, its military said. However, it did not specify how many people were killed or where those deaths occurred. Oleh Synyehubov, the governor of the Kharkiv region, said on Telegram that an elderly woman was killed in shelling Saturday in Kupyansk. Interior Minister Ihor Klymenko said an aerial bomb Saturday in the Zaporizhzhia region killed a police officer and injured a dozen others.
Ukraine has made “tactically significant advances” along the border between the Zaporizhzhia and Donetsk regions, according to an analysis Saturday by the Institute for the Study of War. The advances, while small, could dispel fears that the Ukrainian counteroffensive may be faltering. Ukraine’s gains are forcing Russia to redeploy troops, which will “likely further weaken” its defensive lines, the D.C.-based think tank said. “The further degradation of defending Russian forces thus creates opportunities for any Ukrainian breakthrough to be potentially decisive,” it added.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky fired all heads of regional military recruitment centers in a sweeping move he described as a crackdown on corruption. He said officials faced accusations such as taking bribes or the “illegal transportation” of people across the border to Ukraine’s western neighbors to avoid the military draft. Zelensky had said earlier that an audit of the centers found “disgusting” malfeasance.
Ukraine has started registering vessels to pass through temporary corridors in the Black Sea, Interfax Ukraine reported on Saturday, citing Ukrainian Navy spokesman Dmytro Pletenchuk. Ukraine’s navy announced the creation of the corridors last week and said they would be used mostly to allow civilian vessels stuck since the start of the war to exit Ukrainian ports. “We remind you that the last ship with Ukrainian food left the port of Odessa July 16,” the statement said, referring to Russia’s withdrawal from the U.N.-backed agreement that had allowed the safe wartime export of grain from Ukraine via the Black Sea.
Among the sections in the new history textbooks — formally introduced by Education Minister Sergei Kravtsov last week and aimed at graduating 17-year-olds — will be “confrontation with the West” and “Ukraine is a neo-Nazi state.” It also includes a falsehood that Russian President Vladimir Putin has asserted throughout his invasion of Ukraine: “Russia did not start any military actions but is trying to end them.”
The new manuscript is part of an extraordinary gaslighting campaign in which Putin has tried to convince his people that the West is to blame for the war in Ukraine — which he refers to as a “special military operation” — and that Russia is a victim rather than the aggressor.