Russia refuses demilitarization of ZNPP, AFU says CNN report is inaccurate, and a new controversial media law

31 August, 03:06 PM

Ukraine Today. Newsletter by Romeo Kokriatski, Managing Editor, New Voice of Ukraine Wednesday, August 31st, 2022.

•  Russia has ruled out a proposed demilitarization of the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant.

Kremlin spokesperson Dmitriy Peskov, in a comment to Russian propaganda agency TASS, stated that while Russia has no plans to remove its military personnel from the facility, Russia “believes” that an upcoming IAEA mission to the plant is necessary. Repeating blatantly false Russian claims, the officials urged world powers to “pressure Kyiv into ceasing shelling ZNPP, which puts Europe in danger.” There is no evidence of Ukraine attacking the plant, and numerous verifiable reports of Russian shelling of the facility.

Video of day

•   Speaking of verifiable reports, satellite imagery recently identified another three Russian armored personnel carriers stationed worryingly close to one of the ZNPPs reactors.

•  An AFU source has told NV that an earlier CNN report on liberation villages in Kherson Oblast is not entirely accurate.

CNN, citing its own sources in the Armed Forces, mistakenly claimed that the villages of Novodmytrivka, Arkhanhelkse, Pravdyne, and Tomyna Balka, along the Inhulets River, had been liberated. However, NV’s sources in the AFU have clarified that report, stating that at the moment, only Pravdyne is considered liberated, and the other three are currently contested. The operation to liberate Kherson Oblast is currently incredibly fluid, and the fog of war can make it difficult to establish firm facts on the ground.

•   It’s for that reason that the Ukrainian government has urged caution when discussing the operation on public venues, and has reiterated that the operation’s success relies on “radio silence”, according to Ukrainian military spokesperson Natalia Humeniuk.

•  Russia has shelled a Red Cross base in Slovyansk.

According to the International Committee of the Red Cross, Russian artillery struck an evacuation coordination center in the city, destroying the building and damaging three cars. “Miraculously, none of our volunteers were injured,” said the head of ICRC’s rapid response team in Ukraine, Taras Logginov. “This location is marked as an ICRC residence on every map; the Russian command was aware of this,” Logginov added.

•  The first shipment of Ukrainian grain has arrived in Africa.

The vessel BRAVE COMMANDER was chartered by the UN World Food Pro-gramme to deliver 23,000 tons of wheat from blockaded Ukrainian ports in the Black Sea. Once unloaded from the port of Djibouti, the grain will make its way to consumers in Ethiopia. BRAVE COMMANDER departed from Ukrainian port Pivdennyi on Aug. 16, as part of a multilateral partial deblockading of Ukrainian ports.

•  Ukraine’s parliament has adopted a controversial law on media.

The bill is criticized by some MPs and activists because it removes restrictions on the Russian-language media industry, but according to the Ukrainian parliament, this is a necessary step towards European integration. Currently, the law has passed only the first reading – according to Ukraine’s parliamentary procedure, a second reading is necessary prior to full adopted of the law, which should be taken in two or three weeks. However, some public figures, such as the head of Ukraine’s journalist’s union, said that only 10% of the draft law consists of provisions that Ukraine has undertaken to adopt before the EU – alleging that the rest is "the authorities' desire to gain more influence over the media: to issue prescriptions, fines, and close [media outlets].” 

•  The day’s long read: Dmytro Tuzov on the death of Putin and his entire system.

Tuzov examines the geopolitical implications of the Russian Federation’s loss, and what Ukraine’s rise means for the world.

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