Famous Russian singer Pugacheva speaks out against war in Ukraine, says Russia is now a ‘pariah’ nation

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Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said his forces made “quick and powerful” gains in southern Ukraine and recaptured “dozens” of Russian villages this week.

“The Ukrainian army is advancing quite quickly and powerfully in the south,” Zelenskiy said. said in his nightly video address on October 4.

He said part of the territory had been reclaimed in the regions of Kherson, Luhansk and Donetsk – three of four regions in Ukraine where referendums that Kyiv and the West have denounced as a “sham” took place last month. last on joining Russia.

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Zelenskiy cited eight settlements in the southern Kherson region where Moscow forces had retirement against a vast Ukrainian counter-offensive. And he said the eight colonies were “far from the complete list”.

Zelenskiy made the claim as maps revealed by Moscow on October 4 showed Russian troops had left many areas in Kherson, including along the west bank of the Dnieper.

The Moscow-appointed deputy head of the Kherson region told residents there was no reason to panic. “Our artillery and fighter jets hit enemy forces that enter the sovereign territory of Russia,” said Kirill Stremousov.

Neither party’s claims could be independently verified.

In the area northeast of Kharkiv, mapping indicated that Russian forces had almost entirely abandoned the eastern bank of the Oskil River.

But Russian troops struck Kharkiv’s energy infrastructure again later on October 4, Mayor Ihor Terekhov said. Russian forces intentionally destroy transformers in order to cut off electricity and prevent people from having a normal life, he said.

Earlier on October 4, US President Joe Biden told Zelenskiy in a phone call that the United States would provide Kyiv with $625 million in new security aid.

The assistance will include more High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS), munitions and armored vehicles, the White House said in a statement. statement.

Biden “pledged to continue to support Ukraine as it defends itself against Russian aggression for as long as it takes,” the statement said.

The US president also asserted that the United States is prepared “to impose significant costs on any individual, entity or country that supports the alleged annexation of Russia”.

The statement notes that Biden was joined on the call by Vice President Kamala Harris.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said in a statement that the $625 million assistance will be the 22nd drawdown of U.S. arms and equipment for Ukraine since August 2021 from Department of Defense stockpiles and will bring total U.S. military assistance to Ukraine to more than $17.5 billion since the start of the Biden administration.

“The capabilities we provide are carefully calibrated to make the most difference on the battlefield and strengthen Ukraine’s hand at the negotiating table when the time comes,” Blinken said.

Zelenskiy thanked Biden and the American people for “the continued advocacy and financial support,” and said the discussion included “additional sanctions [and] the situation on the battlefield,” according to Zelenskiy on Facebook.

“I loved hearing President Biden say our military inspires the world, our people inspire the world,” he added.

Zelenskiy signed a decree earlier on Oct. 4 that officially declares any negotiations between Kyiv and Russian President Vladimir Putin “impossible.”

The decree implemented a decision of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine and formalized Zelenskiy’s comments on September 30 after Putin proclaimed four regions of Ukraine partially occupied by Moscow as part of Russia, in what Kyiv and the West called an illegitimate farce.

“He (Putin) doesn’t know what dignity and honesty are. Therefore, we are ready for a dialogue with Russia, but with another president of Russia,” Zelenskiy said September 30.

The decree also stipulates that Ukraine will use military means to bring Russian-occupied territories back under its control.

The White House statement reiterated Washington’s position that it will never recognize Russian annexation of Ukrainian territory.

In Moscow, the upper house of the Russian parliament, the Council of the Federation, on October 4 ratified agreements incorporating four regions into Russia, a step closer to what the West has called the illegal annexation of the territories.

All 153 deputies present at the session voted for the annexation of parts of the Ukrainian regions of Zaporizhzhya, Kherson, Donetsk and Lugansk.

The day before, the lower house of parliament, the State Duma, had approved this decision. The final step in the process is for Putin to sign the documents.

With reports from Reuters AFP and Russian service of RFE/RL
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