Latest developments from the war in Ukraine.
Grain stations in Ukraine were bombed
Russia bombed grain stations in the Odessa region of southern Ukraine on Wednesday, local officials said.
They hit storage facilities and ports along the Danube, which Kiev has increasingly used to transport grain to Europe after Moscow blocked a wartime export deal across the Black Sea.
At the same time, a container ship laden in the port of Odessa since Russia’s all-out invasion more than 17 months ago had sailed and was heading across the Black Sea to the Bosphorus along a temporary corridor created by Ukraine for commercial shipping.
Ukraine’s economy, ravaged by war, relies heavily on agriculture. Its agricultural exports, like those of Russia, are also essential to the global supply of wheat, barley, sunflower oil, and other foodstuffs on which developing nations depend.
After the Kremlin tore up a deal brokered by the United Nations and Turkey last summer to ensure safe Ukrainian grain exports across the Black Sea a month ago, Kiev has sought to redirect transport across the Danube and road and rail links to Europe.
However, the transportation costs in this way are much higher, and some European countries have balked at the consequences of local grain prices, and the Danube ports cannot handle the same volume as the seaports.
Odessa Governor Oleh Kepper said the main targets of Russian drone strikes overnight were port terminals and grain silos, including ports in the Danube Delta. Air defenses managed to intercept 13 drones over the regions of Odessa and Mykolaiv, according to the morning update of the Ukrainian Air Force.
Meanwhile, the container ship departing from Odessa was the first to set sail since July 16, according to Oleksandr Kubrakov, deputy prime minister of Ukraine. She has been stuck in Odessa since February 2022.
The stability of the Russian currency after banking intervention
The ruble was stable on Wednesday, a day after Russia’s central bank raised its key interest rate, fearing that inflation would rise again and the national currency would slip.
On the Moscow Exchange in the morning, it cost 96.9 rubles to buy a dollar and 106 rubles to buy a euro, rates that have been stable since the opening of trading.
The announcement of an emergency increase in the key benchmark interest rate from 8.5% to 12% had already reassured the markets on Tuesday.
However, the situation before that was very delicate: On Monday, the ruble continued the free fall it had begun several weeks ago, trading at more than 100 against the dollar and 110 against the euro, the first time this had happened since March 2022, when it collapsed. Russian currency in the aftermath of the attack on Ukraine.
In a note published on Wednesday, analysts at Alfa Bank felt that “the change in the key rate is unlikely to have a lasting impact on the ruble price,” given the “limited” volumes currently being traded in the Russian foreign exchange market. .
Kyiv says it has regained controlThe village of Orozin village
Ukraine said on Wednesday it had recaptured the village of Uruzhin, on the southern front in the Donetsk region, as part of its counter-offensive against Russia.
“Urozen has been released. Our defenders have been set up nearby. The offensive continues” in the area, Deputy Defense Minister Hana Maliar said in a press release posted on social media.
Moscow said on Wednesday that it had shot down three Ukrainian drones southwest of the capital, in what was at least the fifth attack this month over the Kaluga region.
Ukraine launched the attack around 5 a.m. local time using “three drones on targets in the Kaluga region,” the Russian Defense Ministry wrote on Telegram.
“The Russian air defense systems detected all the drones and destroyed them in a timely manner,” it added.
According to Kaluga Governor Vladislav Shapsha, “there were no consequences for people and infrastructure,” he wrote on Telegram.
Zelensky meets the troops in the Zaporizhia region
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky met with Ukrainian forces and military leaders participating in a counteroffensive against Russian forces in the southeastern region of Zaporizhia on Tuesday.
“Today I still visit our combat brigades. Yesterday we were in the Donetsk region, and today, in different areas of the Zaporizhia region, the territory of the Tavrian operational and strategic group of forces,” Zelensky said in a video posted on Telegram.
An official statement published by his office confirmed that Zelensky “visited the positions of the battalions that carry out offensive operations in the Melitopol sector.”
In his video address, the Ukrainian president said he had spoken with military leaders about “the needs of our warriors,” adding that everything they talked about would be shared later at a staff meeting.
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