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Russia-Ukraine war – live: Putin’s troops accused of executing surrendering soldiers

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Kyiv suffers ‘largest ever’ drone attack by Russia leaving ‘five wounded’

Vladimir Putin’s troops have been accused of executing Ukrainian soldiers who had surrendered near Avdiivka amid heavy fighting.

In a video posted to Telegram, footage appeared to show two men coming out of a shelter, one with his hands above his head, before lying on the ground in front of soldiers. Gunfire and smoke appears, before the video cuts off.

Ukrainian human rights ombudsman Dmytro Lubinets said the footage was evidence of war crimes and slammed Russia as showing its “terrorist face”. The video has not been verified.

“Today, a video of the execution by Russian servicemen of Ukrainian soldiers who surrendered as prisoners appeared on the internet,” Mr Lubinets said.

“This is a clear violation of the Geneva Convention and disrespects international humanitarian law. The Russian side shows its terrorist face again.”

It comes after Ukraine destroyed 10 out of 12 drones launched by Russia in overnight attacks alongside a cruise missile, Ukraine‘s air force said today.

The Iranian-made Shahed drones were headed towards Ukraine‘s northwest, the air force said. Most were downed in the Mykolaiv region in Ukraine‘s south.

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Execution of surrendering soldiers a ‘war crime’, Ukraine says

Vladimir Putin’s troops have been accused of executing Ukrainian soldiers who had surrendered near Avdiivka amid heavy fighting.

In a video posted to Telegram, footage appeared to show two soldiers coming out of a shelter, one with his hands above his head, before lying on the ground in front of soldiers. Gunfire and smoke appears, before the video cuts off.

Ukrainian human rights ombudsman Dmytro Lubinets said the footage was evidence of war crimes and slammed Russia as showing its “terrorist face”. The video has not been independently verified.

“Today, a video of the execution by Russian servicemen of Ukrainian soldiers who surrendered as prisoners appeared on the internet,” Mr Lubinets said.

The Strategic Committee of the Armed Forces of Ukraine said it had confirmed the authenticity of the footage showing Russian troops gunning down two Ukrainian soldiers upon surrender.

“The published footage depicts the execution of two prisoners of war from the Armed Forces of Ukraine. According to verified information, the Russian occupiers have once again treacherously fired upon unarmed soldiers,” the Ukrainian army said.

Alexander Butler3 December 2023 11:00

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Ukraine to open crossing for lorries on Monday to unblock Polish border

Ukraine and Poland will open an additional border crossing for empty trucks on Monday in order to open up a much-needed route for Kyiv, with some crossings blocked by weeks of protests by Polish drivers, Ukrainian authorities said on Sunday.

Those protests, over what Polish truckers see as unfair competition from their Ukrainian peers, started on 6 November, with four border crossings now under blockade.

Polish hauliers’ main demand is to stop Ukrainian truckers having permit-free access to the EU, something that Kyiv and Brussels say is impossible.

“The opening of Uhryniv is the first point on the list of measures implemented to unblock the border, reduce queues and increase the capacity of the Ukrainian-Polish border,” the border service said.

Ukraine said last week it had agreed some measures with Poland that could ease the pressure at the blockaded border crossings, but that they had not discussed the main demands of the protests.

Alexander Butler3 December 2023 14:00

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Elderly man killed in Russian strikes, Kyiv claims

An elderly man was killed during Russian shelling of Ukraine’s southern region of Kherson on Sunday, regional officials said.

“The occupants attacked the Sadove village. One of the hits was to a private garage, where a 78-year-old man was at the time. He died on the spot from the explosive injury,” the Kherson military administration said on the Telegram messaging app.

Russian troops had abandoned Kherson and the western bank of the Dnipro river late last year, but now regularly shell those areas from positions on the eastern bank.

Alexander Butler3 December 2023 13:30

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Soviet war memorials ‘destroyed’ in Eastern Europe

Soviet war memorials are being destroyed in some Eastern European countries, Russia has claimed.

“Regrettably, memorials dedicated to Soviet liberator soldiers are presently being destroyed in some Eastern European countries as part of a campaign to falsify history,” Russia’s foreign ministry said.

“The Russian Foreign Ministry brings these outrageous facts to public attention and actively works to preserve and restore these memorials. The memory of those who sacrificed their lives for our future remains immortal.”

It comes as Russia celebrates the Day of the Unknown Soldier, a day established to remember fallen soldiers in Russia and abroad.

Alexander Butler3 December 2023 13:00

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Ukrainian parliament’s chairman accuses Russia of war crimes

The chairman of the Ukrainian parliament has shared a still of a video which is said to show Russian soldiers executing two prisoners of war.

Ruslan Stefanchuk said: “This is another crime committed by russian terrorists. Violation of the rules of war. The killing of unarmed soldiers.

“Russia has once again proved that it is a terrorist country for which there are no laws and norms of international law.”

Alexander Butler3 December 2023 12:19

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Ukraine’s war with Russia complicated by winter, Zelensky says

Volodymyr Zelensky said on that the war with Russia was in a new stage, with winter expected to complicate fighting after a summer counteroffensive that failed to produce desired results.

Despite setbacks, however, the president of Ukraine said his nation wouldn’t give up.

“We have a new phase of war, and that is a fact,” Zelensky said, speaking in Kharkiv after a morale-boosting tour of the region.

“Winter as a whole is a new phase of war. Am I satisfied? Look, we are not backing down, I am satisfied.”

Ukraine’s war with Russia complicated by winter, Zelensky says

Volodymyr Zelensky said on Thursday 30 November that the war with Russia was in a new stage, with winter expected to complicate fighting after a summer counteroffensive that failed to produce desired results. Despite setbacks, however, the president of Ukraine said his nation wouldn’t give up. “We have a new phase of war, and that is a fact,” Zelensky said, speaking in Kharkiv after a morale-boosting tour of the region. “Winter as a whole is a new phase of war. “Am I satisfied? Look, we are not backing down, I am satisfied.”

Alexander Butler3 December 2023 12:00

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Destroying ground air defence systems most important ‘contest’ of the war

Destroying both Ukrainian and Russian ground air defence systems remains the most important “contest” between the two adversaries, the UK ministry of defence said.

“The efforts of both Russia and Ukraine to overcome their adversary’s ground-based air defence systems continue to be one of the most important contests of the war,” it said.

The MoD explained the Russian SA-15 surface-to-air missile plays a critical and “largely effective role” in the war, which is used to combat Ukrainian unmanned aerial attacks.

Alexander Butler3 December 2023 10:30

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Russia eases attacks on Avdiivka

The Ukrainian military spokesperson Oleksandr Shtupun told national television that Russian attacks on Avdiivka had halved over the past 24 hours, largely as a result of heavy losses.

“The coking plant is controlled by the Ukrainian armed forces,” Shtupun said. “Enemy forces are trying to make their way inside, but are suffering losses in infantry and equipment.”

The Russian military had set its sights on seizing Avdiivka and its vast coking plant since mid-October in attacks described as “meat grinder” assaults.

Alexander Butler3 December 2023 10:00

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Russia launches 12 drones and a cruise missile at Ukraine

Russia launched 12 drones and a cruise missile at Ukraine overnight, with Ukraine’s air defence systems destroying 10 drones before they reached their targets, Ukraine’s air force said on Sunday.

The cruise missile was not destroyed but did not reach its target, the air force said without giving further detail. It did not say what happened to the two drones that there were not destroyed.

The Iranian-made Shahed drones were headed towards Ukraine’s north-west, the air force said. Most were downed in the Mykolaiv region in Ukraine’s south.

Alexander Butler3 December 2023 09:30

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Putin orders Russian military to increase troop numbers by 170,000

“In accordance with the decree of Russian president signed on November 29, 2023, the maximum size of the armed forces of the Russian Federation has been increased by 170,000 military personnel to 1,320,000 military personnel,” the defence ministry said.

Shweta Sharma3 December 2023 09:00

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