Here is the situation on Sunday, October 15, 2023.
- Two people were killed in Russian attacks on the eastern Ukrainian town of Avdiivka, officials said, and two others were killed in shelling of Beryslav city in Ukraine’s Kherson region.
- Russian forces continued their assault on Avdiivka, repeatedly shelling the town and launching ground operations in one of the few offensives by Russian forces in months.
- Ukraine’s military said it had withstood 15 Russian ground attacks mounted in the vicinity of Avdiivka, Tonenke and Pervomaiske in the Donetsk region. The fierce Russian onslaught around Avdiivka has been described as a new offensive by Moscow.
- Ukraine military spokesperson Oleksandr Stupun said Avdiivka was now a key objective for Russian forces to take “because it is the only chance to show some kind of victory. They have no other options.”
- Almost 30 Ukrainian combat drones were shot down by Russian air defences over Russia’s Kursk and Belgorod regions. Two additional drones were shot down over the Black Sea near the southern Russian resort city of Sochi. There were no reports of casualties immediately.
- Russia’s Black Sea Fleet conducted drills using rocket launchers off the port city of Sevastopol in the Russian-annexed Crimean Peninsula.
- The White House accused North Korea of delivering more than 1,000 containers of military equipment and munitions to Russia for its ongoing war in Ukraine. Washington released images that it said showed the containers being loaded onto a Russian-flagged ship before being moved by train to southwestern Russia. North Korea has previously denied providing weaponry to Moscow.
- Russian President Vladimir Putin will meet China’s Xi Jinping at the Belt and Road Forum in Beijing on October 17-18. Putin’s visit to China is his first international trip since The Hague-based International Criminal Court (ICC) issued a warrant for his arrest in March for war crimes related to the deportation of children from Ukraine.
- Armenian President Vahagn Khachaturyan ratified the ICC statutes, his office said.
- Ukrainian human rights ombudsman Dmytro Lubinets said the Foreign Ministry in Kyiv sent a note of protest to Israel after Ukrainian citizens were unable to evacuate from war-torn Gaza. Lubinets said Ukraine could not understand why its citizens, and those of other countries, were not allowed to evacuate from besieged and bombarded Gaza. Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has been a vocal supporter of Israel in its war on Gaza.
- World Athletics President Sebastian Coe said the International Olympic Committee (IOC) had made the “only decision left open” in suspending Russia’s national Olympic body for violating the territorial integrity of Ukraine. The IOC decision came after Russia’s Olympic Committee this week officially recognised regional sporting organisations from four Ukrainian territories annexed by Russia since its invasion of Ukraine began in 2022.
Source: Al Jazeera and news agencies