A submarine at the Russian naval base in Novorossiysk

EA/Times Radio Podcast: What Will Defeat of Putin’s Ukraine War Look Like?

Thursday’s Coverage: Russia’s Attacks on Grain and Global Food Supplies

Map: Institute for Study of War


Russian opposition politician Alexei Navalny has been condemned to an additional 19 years in prison.

Navalny, who survived an assassination attempt with Novichok nerve agent in 2020, was subsequently given an 11 1/2-year punishment for “fraud” and other alleged offenses. His leading supporters have also been arrested and imprisoned.

On Thursday, Navalny sent an online message through his lawyers, “It’s going to be a huge term. This is what’s called a ‘Stalinist’ term.”

He called on Russians to resist the Kremlin, noting that the intent of his sentences were “to intimidate you, not me”.


The International Atomic Energy Agency has finally seen areas of the Russian-occupied Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant in southern Ukraine, a month after it requested access.

International Atomic Energy Agency experts have observed no mines or explosives on the rooftops of Unit 3 and Unit 4 reactor buildings and the turbine halls…after having been given access yesterday afternoon.

Ukrainian officials have warned since last autumn that Russian forces could place explosives in the nuclear complex, detonate them, and try to blame Kyiv.

Almost two weeks ago, the IAEA team found mines between the inner and outer perimeters of the plant, Europe’s largest.

IAEA chief Rafael Grossi said on Friday, “I welcome the news that IAEA experts have finally been granted this additional access at the site.”

See also Ukraine War, Day 517: UN Finds Mines at Russian-Occupied Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant


Ukraine’s security services warn that Russia may be preparing to stage a “false flag” attack at the Mozyr oil refinery in Belarus.

The security services said Moscow, using military and intelligence forces disguised as Wagner Group mercenaries, will carry out the attack to blame “Ukrainian saboteurs”.

“Russia plans to accuse Ukraine of what they have done in order to try once again to draw Minsk into the full-scale war against our state,” they said in a statement.

The services added that their claim is based on information obtained from several sources, including a captured Russian serviceman.


Video is circulating of the claimed Ukrainian naval drone attack on the Russian Black Sea Fleet warship Olenegorsky Gornyak this morning.

The 112-meter (367-foot) long warship has been used to transport Russian troops and military hardware into occupied Ukrainian ports. It was built in the 1970s, with a capacity of 450 tons in cargo and 25 armored personnel carriers.

With a crew of about 100, the Olenegorsky Gornyak is one of three landing ships permanently stationed in the Black Sea during the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Footage of the damaged warship listing near the naval base in Novorossiysk in the Krasnodar region of Russia:


Ukraine’s intelligence services say they have knocked the Russian Black Sea Fleet warship Olenegorsky Gornyak out of action with a “serious breach”.

An “intelligence source” said the naval drone attack was carried out by Ukraine’s SBU security service and its navy.

The source did not say whether the attack was in Russian-occupied Crimea or on the Novorossiysk naval base inside Russia. However, video from Novorossiysk shows a vessel badly listing on its side.


European Union foreign policy head Josep Borrell has written the G20 nations, urging them to help the EU persuade Russia to rejoin the July 2022 Black Sea grain deal.

On July 17, Vladimir Putin ripped up the agreement lifting Russia’s blockade on three Ukrainian ports. Since then, Russia has escalated missile and drone strikes on port terminals and grain warehouses.

Borrell warned the G20 that Moscow is risking the lives of children and others in war-torn countries and conflict zones. He urged the international community to speak on the issue “with a clear and unified voice”.

The world has a shared interest in responsible stewardship of global food security. We owe it to the people most in need.

In 2023, Ukraine has supplied 80% of the wheat for the UN World Food Programme’s support of humanitarian operations in food-insecure countries such as Afghanistan, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Sudan, and Yemen.

“With the termination of the BSGI, all this is now at risk,” noted Borrell.

In a UN Security Council discussion of the issue, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said:

Every member of this council, every member of the United Nations should tell Moscow: enough.

Enough using the Black Sea as blackmail. Enough treating the world’s most vulnerable people as leverage.

David Miliband, the head of the International Rescue Committee, summarized:

Combatants attack civilians, deny humanitarian aid, and destroy farms and food warehouses. All illegal as well as immoral. The solution is that perpetrators should be held to account.

We do not need new resolutions, but we need resolution to uphold the existing ones. The next time this council is presented with evidence of hunger used as a weapon of war, it must trigger action.

ORIGINAL ENTRY: Russia’s Black Sea port of Novorossiysk has been rocked by explosions on Friday morning, in an apparent attack on a naval base.

Russia’s Defence Ministry said “two unmanned sea boats” attacked the base. It insisted that the naval drones were destroyed by Russian warships.

Videos posted online showed ships just off the coast to the sound of gunfire. All movement of vessels has now been halted in the port.

The Caspian Pipeline Consortium, which loads oil onto tankers in Novorossiysk, said its facilities had not been damaged and oil loadings continue onto tankers which were already moored.

Ukraine has regularly struck naval facilities and Russia’s Black Sea Fleet headquarters in Russian-occupied Crimea, but today’s attack is the first on a naval base inside Russia.