Ukrainian troops and artillery on the frontline in the Kherson region in southern Ukraine, July 2022 (Getty)

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Iran Delivers Drones to Russia for Moscow’s Troubled Ukraine Invasion

Monday’s Coverage: IAEA Inspectors “On Way” to Russian-Occupied Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Plant

Source: Institute for the Study of War


Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskiy meets International Atomic Energy Agency head Rafael Grossi in Kyiv, as the IAEA seeks access to the Russian-occupied Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant in southern Ukraine.

Russia and its proxies are reportedly delaying the visit by shelling the route that the IAEA would take to the complex.


Meeting Vladimir Putin, the head of the Russian National Guard, Viktor Zolotov, assures that “we feel the support of everyone in the liberated territories”.

The video of the meeting was released as Ukraine’s counter-offensive advanced into the “liberated territories”, with reports of support from residents and attacks on Russian proxy officials by Ukrainian partisans.


The deputy head of the Russian proxy administration in the occupied Kherson region, Kirill Stremousov, insisted in a telephone interview that “everything in Kherson was under control” despite the launch of a Ukrainian counter-offensive in southern Ukraine.

He proclaimed that Ukrainian spies and saboteurs were killed near Kherson’s Tavriiskyi neighborhood on Tuesday.

However, the official’s authority was undermined when geolocation analysts established that he is no longer in southern Ukraine but in Voronezh, a Russian city about 600 miles from Kherson.

Stremousov was found out through two videos which he posted to downplay the counter-offensive.

After the revelation, he told The Guardian that he is “travelling around Russian cities, meeting different people for work”: “I don’t have to sit [in Kherson]. I am the deputy head of the region and have the opportunity to move around…These are working trips.”

A series of Russian proxy officials have been killed by Ukrainian partisans.

Stremousov took charge in Kherson after chief administrator Volodymyr Saldo was taken to hospital with suspected poisoning earlier this summer. Last week, regional official Alexei Kovalev was shot and killed in his home.


Ukraine Presidential advisor Mykhailo Podolyak reports that Russia’s forces are obstructing the International Atomic Energy Agency mission trying to reach the Russian-occupied Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant in southern Ukraine.

After weeks of effort, the IAEA mission finally hoped to have permission to inspect the plant, used by the Russians as a military base. The team reached Kyiv on Monday, and was hoping to be in Zaporizhzhia on Wednesday.


Ukrainian forces have used wooden decoys, resembling US HIMARS medium-range rocket systems, to lure Russia into wasting expensive long-range cruise missiles.

Interviews with “senior US and Ukrainian officials”, as well as photographs of the decoys, confirm the operation. At least 10 sea-launched Kalibr cruise missiles have fired on the replicas encouraging Ukraine to increase the production of the decoys.

Russia’s Defense Ministry has declared the destruction of numerous HIMARS — 16 of which have been sent by the US to Ukraine — without providing evidence of a single successful strike.

“They’ve claimed to have hit more HIMARS than we have even sent,” a US diplomat said.

Todd Breasseale, the Pentagon’s acting spokesman, added, “We are aware of these latest claims by [Russian Defense] Minister [Sergey] Shoygu, and they are again patently false. What is happening, however, is that the Ukrainians are employing with devastating accuracy and effectiveness each of the fully accounted for precision missile systems.”


Six more ships, with a total of 183,000 tons of Ukrainian grain and agricultural products, have left Black Sea ports.

One of the vessels, the Kateria, is carrying 37,500 tons of wheat to Yemen under the UN World Food Programme.

Meanwhile, the MV Brave Commander is the first vessel to arrive at an African port with Ukrainian grain since February. After two weeks at sea, it docked in Djibouti with 23,000 tons of wheat, which will be transported to Ethoipia.

Ukraine’s Infrastructure Ministry says 61 ships with about 1.5 million tons of agricultural products have left Ukrainian ports since the July 22 deal to lift Russia’s blockade.


Claims are circulating that the Russian headquarters in the market area in occupied Kherson city has been struck by Ukrainian fire.

The car of a Russian major, formally the “head of the duty unit of the traffic police”, has reportedly been blown up.


The latest Russian attacks across the Donetsk region in eastern Ukraine have killed two civilians and injured four.

Governor Pavlo Kyrylenko said the fatalities were in the communities of Rozdolne and Pivnichne.

In Ukraine’s second-largest city Kharkiv in the northeast, at least five people have been killed and 11 wounded by Russian shelling on Tuesday.


Oleksiy Arestovych, a senior advisor to Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, is pointing to a gradual build-up of the offensive in the south, rather than a lightning strike to liberate the Kherson region.

This is a planned slow operation to grind the enemy, saving the lives of our military and civilians.

Of course, many would like a large-scale offensive with news about the capture by our military of a settlement in an hour. But we don’t fight like that. Yes, funds are limited.

We do not fight for show-offs and high-profile phrases as an enemy. We fight for a cause. And this thing takes time and effort.

Therefore, be patient. This process will not be very fast, but will end with the installation of the Ukrainian flag over all the settlements of Ukraine.

ORIGINAL ENTRY: Kyiv has launched its counter-offensive against the Russian occupation of southern Ukraine, with reports of immediate success on the frontline in the Kherson region.

The spokesperson of Southern Command, Natalia Humeniuk, announced on Monday afternoon, “Today we started offensive actions in various directions, including in the Kherson region.” She said strikes on Russia’s logistical routes had “unquestionably weakened the enemy”, with more than 10 ammunition dumps hit over the last week.

For operational security, the Ukrainian General Staff asked for silence on progress. However, military bloggers reported that Ukrainian forces broke through the Russian frontline and advanced 10-15 km (6-9 miles) establishing a strategic bridgehead on the eastern bank of the Ingulets River, the tributary of the Dnipro River.

Russia’s pontoon bridge across the Dnipro River — vital for maintaining a link between forces to the west and to the east after damage to all main bridges — was destroyed. Ukrainian forces are shelling the ferries used by the Russians as an alternative for military supplies.

On Monday evening, a source in the Ukraine military confirmed that the villages of Novodmytrivka, Arkhanhelske, Tomyna Balka, and Pravdyne have been liberated.

The operation began at night with massive shelling of Russian positions and the rear. The main direction of the attack was on Pravdyne. We hit their infantry from the DNR and LNR [the Russian proxies “Donetsk People’s Republic” and “Luhansk People’s Republic”], and they fled. The Russian landing force fled after them….

Their first line of defense has been broken through in three places. Many of them were killed and captured, and a lot of military vehicles [were destroyed]….

We’ll see how it goes from here. Our target is Kherson [city].

Addressing the nation in his nightly address, Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said, “I won’t give any specifics, but we will drive the invaders to the border.” He urged Russian soldiers to go home or surrender, otherwise “they will deal with our defenders, who will not stop until they liberate everything that belongs to Ukraine”.

Ukraine is returning its own. It will return the Kharkiv region, Luhansk region, Donetsk region, Zaporizhzhia region, Kherson region, Crimea….This will happen.

Russian officials insisted that the “enemy’s offensive attempt failed miserably”. But Russian media tried to cover up a retreats: “The Russian Federation’s troops have made a successful maneuver and are conducting active offensive actions towards Crimea” — i.e, away from the frontline north of Kherson city.

Russian proxy officials also acknowledged that Ukrainian rockets struck the town of Nova Kakhovka, just east of Kherson city, leaving it without water or power.

John Kirby, a spokesman for the US National Security Council, noted:

[The offensive has] already had an impact on Russian military capabilities.

Because the Russians have had to pull resources from the east simply because of reports that the Ukrainians might be going more on the offense in the south. And so they’ve had to deplete certain units …in certain areas in the East in the Donbass, to respond to what they clearly believed was a looming threat of a counter offensive.