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Russia threatens to seize Zaporizhzhya nuclear power plant and proposes to annex the region – Obozrevatel

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Russia wants to withdraw from Ukraine its largest nuclear power plant in Europe in Zaporozhye, occupied by the Russian army, if Kyiv does not pay Moscow for the generated electricity, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Marat Khusnullin said on Wednesday.

This statement joins other statements made by the Russian authorities in recent weeks that suggest that Russia is preparing a long-term occupation or even annexation of territories it controls in southern Ukraine: Kherson region and a significant part of Zaporozhye.

If the energy system of Ukraine is ready to accept and pay, [a central] may return [às mãos] from Ukraine. if [a Ucrânia] will not accept, (the plant) will go to Russia,” Khusnullin said during a visit to the nuclear facility on Wednesday, quoted this Thursday by Russian news agencies.

“We have a lot of experience with nuclear power plants, we have companies in Russia that have such experience, there is no doubt that (the one in Zaporozhye) will continue to work,” he said.

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The Ukrainian Atomic Energy Agency Energoatom assured this Thursday morning that the nuclear power plant continues to supply electricity to Ukraine.

Russians “they do not have the technical ability to supply energy from the Zaporozhye NPP”assured the press secretary of “Energoatom” Leonid Oleinik, whose words are quoted by the French news agency AFP.

“It takes time and money. It’s like building a bridge in the Crimea. And in a month or two, we will return Ukrainian control over everything,” he added.

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According to the spokesman, “no one will have to buy anything from them. [russos]”.

Oliynik also assured that Russia does not have the ability to cut off electricity to the regions of Ukraine not controlled by Russia, if only because “all the necessary equipment is under the control of Ukraine.”

In 2021, that is, before the start of the Russian offensive against Ukraine on February 24, the Zaporozhye NPP produced 20% of the annual electricity production in Ukraine and 47% of the Ukrainian nuclear fleet.

Marat Khusnullin further stated that Russia remains in this region of Ukraine, which apparently implies the annexation of the zone.

“I believe that the future of this region is to work in a friendly Russian family. That’s why I came here to help integration as much as possible,” said the Deputy Prime Minister of the Russian Federation.

Russian and pro-Russian officials stationed in Ukraine by Moscow also said last week that the Ukrainian region Kherson is likely to be annexed to Russia.

Russia is preparing referendums in Kherson and Zaporozhye, Ukrainian authorities said

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Vladimir Putin has delayed the invasion of Ukraine at least three times.

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Putin has repeatedly consulted with Russian Chief of the General Staff Valery Gerasimov and Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu about the invasion, Europa Press told Ukraine’s chief intelligence director Vadim Skibitsky.

According to Skibitsky, it was the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB), which is responsible for counterintelligence and espionage work, that put pressure on Gerasimov and other military agencies to agree to launch an offensive. .

However, according to the Ukrainian intelligence services, the FSB considered that by the end of February sufficient preparations had already been made to guarantee the success of the Russian Armed Forces in a lightning invasion.

However, according to Kyiv, the Russian General Staff provided the Russian troops with supplies and ammunition for only three days, hoping that the offensive would be swift and immediately successful.

The head of Ukrainian intelligence also emphasized the cooperation of local residents, who always provided the Ukrainian authorities with up-to-date information about the Russian army, such as the number of soldiers or the exact location of troops.

The military offensive launched on February 24 by Russia in Ukraine caused at least 6.5 million internally displaced persons and more than 7.8 million refugees to European countries, which is why the UN classifies this migration crisis as the worst in Europe since World War II (1939-1945). gg.). ).

At the moment, 17.7 million Ukrainians are in need of humanitarian assistance, and 9.3 million are in need of food aid and housing.

The UN has presented as confirmed 6,755 civilian deaths and 10,607 wounded since the beginning of the war, stressing that these figures are much lower than the real ones.

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Life sentence for former Swedish official for spying for Russia

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A Stockholm court on Monday sentenced a former Swedish intelligence officer to life in prison for spying for Russia, and his brother to at least 12 years in prison. In what is considered one of the most serious cases in Swedish counterintelligence history, much of the trial took place behind closed doors in the name of national security.

According to the prosecution, it was Russian military intelligence, the GRU, who took advantage of the information provided by the two brothers between 2011 and their arrest at the end of 2021.

Peyman Kia, 42, has held many senior positions in the Swedish security apparatus, including the army and his country’s intelligence services (Säpo). His younger brother, Payam, 35, is accused of “participating in the planning” of the plot and of “managing contacts with Russia and the GRU, including passing on information and receiving financial rewards.”

Both men deny the charges, and their lawyers have demanded an acquittal on charges of “aggravated espionage,” according to the Swedish news agency TT.

The trial coincides with another case of alleged Russian espionage, with the arrest of the Russian-born couple in late November in a suburb of Stockholm by a police team arriving at dawn in a Blackhawk helicopter.

Research website Bellingcat identified them as Sergei Skvortsov and Elena Kulkova. The couple allegedly acted as sleeper agents for Moscow, having moved to Sweden in the late 1990s.

According to Swedish press reports, the couple ran companies specializing in the import and export of electronic components and industrial technology.

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The man was again detained at the end of November for “illegal intelligence activities.” His partner, suspected of being an accomplice, has been released but remains under investigation.

According to Swedish authorities, the arrests are not related to the trial of the Kia brothers.

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Ukraine admitted that Russia may announce a general mobilization

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“They can strengthen their positions. We understand that this can happen. At the same time, we do not rule out that they will announce a general mobilization,” Danilov said in an interview with the Ukrainska Pravda online publication.

Danilov believed that this mobilization would also be convened “to exterminate as many as possible” of Russian citizens, so that “they would no longer have any problems on their territory.”

In this sense, Danilov also reminded that Russia has not given up on securing control over Kyiv or the idea of ​​the complete “destruction” of Ukraine. “We have to be ready for anything,” he said.

“I want everyone to understand that [os russos] they have not given up on the idea of ​​destroying our nation. If they don’t have Kyiv in their hands, they won’t have anything in their hands, we must understand this,” continued Danilov, who also did not rule out that a new Russian offensive would come from “Belarus and other territories.” .

As such, Danilov praised the decision of many of its residents who chose to stay in the Ukrainian capital when the war broke out in order to defend the city.

“They expected that there would be panic, that people would run, that there would be nothing to protect Kyiv,” he added, referring to President Volodymyr Zelensky.

The military offensive launched on February 24 by Russia in Ukraine caused at least 6.5 million internally displaced persons and more than 7.8 million refugees to European countries, which is why the UN classifies this migration crisis as the worst in Europe since World War II (1939-1945). gg.). ).

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At the moment, 17.7 million Ukrainians are in need of humanitarian assistance, and 9.3 million are in need of food aid and housing.

The Russian invasion, justified by Russian President Vladimir Putin on the need to “denazify” and demilitarize Ukraine for Russia’s security, was condemned by the international community at large, which responded by sending weapons to Ukraine and imposing political and economic sanctions on Russia.

The UN has presented as confirmed 6,755 civilian deaths and 10,607 wounded since the beginning of the war, stressing that these figures are much lower than the real ones.

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