Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said the northeastern city of Izium has become the latest place where Russians have left mass graves.
Zelenskyy said on Thursday that Ukrainian authorities have found a mass burial site near Izium in the newly recaptured Kharkiv region.
“Bucha, Mariupol, now, unfortunately, Izium,” Zelenskyy said in his evening televised address, adding that confirmation would likely come on Friday. “Russia leaves death everywhere. And it must be held accountable for that. The world must take real responsibility for this war in Russia.”
The Associated Press reported that its reporters saw the site in a forest outside Izium on Thursday. A mass grave had a marker that said it contained the bodies of 17 Ukrainian soldiers. It was surrounded by hundreds of individual graves with only crosses to mark them.
Sergei Bolvinov, a senior Ukrainian police investigator in the Kharkiv region, told Britain’s Sky News that a mass grave with more than 440 bodies was found near Izium after the Russians were driven out. He described the tomb as “one of the largest burial sites in any liberated city”.
POINT OF INVESTMENT IN THE UKRAINE WAR:As Russia concedes defeat in Kharkiv, Ukraine regains ground, confidence
►The Biden administration said it will send another $600 million in military aid to Ukraine, seeking to fuel Kyiv’s counteroffensive with some of the same weapons that have helped defeat Russian forces in parts of the east and south .
►Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky was not seriously injured when his vehicle was hit by another early Thursday after a visit to the battlefield, his spokesman said. The driver of the other vehicle received first aid and was taken by ambulance, the spokesman said.
►Air raid sirens sounded twice in Kyiv as Zelenskyy met on Thursday with European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, who reiterated the EU’s support for Ukraine.
►The Board of Governors of 35 countries of the United Nations atomic agency passed a resolution on Thursday calling on Russia to immediately end its occupation of the Ukrainian nuclear power plant in Zaporizhzhia, where the bombings of the facility and nearby areas in recent weeks raised fears of a possible radiation disaster. .
►Superstar Stephen Curry of the NBA champion Golden State Warriors said his “contacts in the Biden administration turned down an offer to help” efforts to free WNBA star Brittney Griner from Russian captivity .
Russians flee to the border near Kharkiv
Tension was rising in Russian villages bordering the Kharkiv region on Thursday as the roar of Ukrainian military firepower moved closer to the border.
The governor of Russia’s Belgorod region said residents were injured when Ukrainian shells crashed into one border village and that private homes, farm buildings and power lines in another were partially destroyed. Vyacheslav Gladkov also ordered the evacuation of several villages.
Ukraine has reclaimed thousands of kilometers and more than 300 towns and cities this month. Ukraine’s Defense Ministry said Russian troops fleeing Ukraine’s advance are gathering at the Belgorod border, where other Russian troops are preventing them from crossing.
“They have no communication with the command,” the ministry said in a statement. “There is no supply of food and ammunition.”
The The New York Times and Wall Street Journal, reporting from Belgorod in recent days, found locals expressing fear and concern. One teacher said she told students who heard missiles that the sound was just thunder.
Some residents have fled to Belgorod from Ukrainian villages after working for Russian administrations, only to have Russians leave Ukrainian cities. Now they fear recovery from the Ukrainian authorities who see them as traitors.
Biden will meet with relatives of Brittney Griner and Paul Whelan at the White House
President Joe Biden will hold separate meetings Friday at the White House with family members of WNBA star Brittney Griner and Michigan security executive Paul Whelan, the Associated Press reported, citing senior administration officials.
This will be the first face-to-face contact between the president and the relatives of the two Americans held captive in Russia, considered by the US government to be “detained in error.”
The Biden administration said in July that it had made a “substantial proposal” to bring them home in a prisoner exchange, but those efforts have so far been unsuccessful.
Griner has been detained in Russia since February on drug-related charges. She was sentenced last month to nine years in prison after pleading guilty, and has appealed the sentence. Whelan is serving a 16-year sentence on espionage-related charges that he and his family say are bogus. Bill Richardson, the former US ambassador to the United Nations, visited Moscow this week to discuss his release.
Putin acknowledges China’s ‘concerns’ over war in Ukraine
Russian President Vladimir Putin acknowledged that China has “questions and concerns” about Moscow’s war in Ukraine as he met his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping in Uzbekistan on Thursday.
“We very much appreciate the well-balanced position of our Chinese friends in relation to the Ukraine crisis,” said Putin, who used the opportunity to blast the West. “We understand your questions and concerns in this regard.”
Putin’s rare mention of Chinese concerns comes as Beijing has expressed concern over the impact of volatile oil prices and economic uncertainty from a war that has lasted nearly seven months and seen Russia experience some setbacks shameful on the battlefield.
from China The economy has already suffered a downturn this year largely due to its strict anti-Covid measures. Russia has dramatically increased energy sales to China in recent months as purchases in Europe declined due to sanctions.
Xi made no reference to Ukraine in his public remarks during the meeting on the sidelines of the eight-nation Shanghai Cooperation Organization, a security alliance created as a counterweight to U.S. influence. The alliance also includes India, Pakistan and four former Soviet nations in Central Asia.
Some Russian troops in Kharkiv “fled in apparent panic”, says the British ministry
The Russian withdrawal from the Kharkiv region, where Ukrainian forces have been consolidating their recently recovered territory, was in some cases orderly, but on other occasions the troops “fled in apparent panic”, according to the British Ministry of Defence. he said in an intelligence update.
In the process, the Russians left behind valuable equipment “essential to enabling Russia’s artillery-centric style of warfare,” the ministry said, concluding that the abandonment illustrates “localized breakdowns in command and control”.
Contributor: The Associated Press