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Neutralization of Russian saboteurs in the south, new military aid from US: last night's highlights
24 June, 2022

The Armed Forces have neutralized a Russian sabotage and reconnaissance group in southern Ukraine, and Washington has announced a new military aid package for Kyiv. Here is what you may have missed from the previous night.

New defense assistance from the United States

The United States has announced a new $450 million defense package for Ukraine that will include additional HIMARS multiple rocket launchers, White House spokesman John Kirby said.

In addition to HIMARS systems, the new package will include other weapons and equipment, including tens of thousands of additional ammunition for artillery that the United States has already sent to Ukraine. On top of that, Ukraine will receive patrol boats to protect the coast and its inland waters. Kirby did not specify exactly how many HIMARS units and boats Ukraine will receive.

Destruction of saboteurs in the south

The Ukrainian military on the southern front neutralized a Russian sabotage and reconnaissance group, and also struck at the command and observation post, as well as a cluster of enemy equipment, said the spokesman of the Odesa regional administration Serhiy Bratchuk.

According to him, a group of saboteurs killed by Ukrainian fighters tried to penetrate the rear of the Armed Forces in the Kherson Oblast. Bratchuk claims that the Ukrainians met the group with fire and killed several Russians. Several more saboteurs escaped, their fate is unknown.

In addition, Operational Command South has informed that Ukrainian aircraft struck five enemy positions during the day on June 23: 44 occupiers were destroyed, 2 152-mm guns — Giatsint-B and Msta-B, as well as several units of armored and automotive equipment.

PACE: Russia downed MH17 over Donbas

On June 23, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe approved a resolution acknowledging that the Malaysian Boeing 777 flight MH17 was shot down by a Russian missile in 2014.

The PACE considers the "most convincing scenario" in which the plane was shot down by a Buk missile provided to Russian-controlled proxy forces. The organization came to this conclusion on the basis of evidence received from the Ukrainian and Dutch authorities.

Sale of electronics without the permission of the right holders

Russian electronics stores Ozon and Svyaznoy began selling equipment through so-called parallel imports, ie without the permission of the rights holders. Prior to that, this scheme was officially approved by the Russian authorities.

A Kommersant source in the electronics market says that retailers hope that Russia will not have problems with equipment intended for the EAEU markets. However, they still fear that manufacturers will block the activation of electronics, as Samsung does whenever there are attempts to activate their devices in another region.

Analysts forecast a Russian offensive in the Donbas

In the last few days, Russian troops have made significant progress in the Luhansk Oblast, but the Armed Forces have slowed and weakened the occupiers. The American Institute for the Study of War predicts that Russia's offensive operations are likely to stall in the coming weeks, when Ukrainian troops will be able to launch "prudent counteroffensives."

As noted by ISW, Ukrainian forces in the region are likely to have degraded the overall potential of the Russians, not allowing them to focus on more favorable axes of advance.

The shelling of the occupiers does not stop

On the night of June 24, the Russian occupation forces fired at the Zaporizhzhya Oblast from multiple rocket launchers, hitting the infrastructure, according to early reports. Information on the destruction and casualties is being clarified.

During June 23, the Russian occupiers continued to fire on the Kharkiv Oblast, killing two civilians and injuring 10 more, including two children.

Also during the day, the occupiers again fired on the Sumy Oblast from the territory of the Russian Federation. This time, a hospitalized child was injured.

In addition, at least six civilians were killed and five others were injured in Russian shelling in the Donetsk Oblast on June 23.

FM Kuleba on obtaining candidate status

The Minister for Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Dmytro Kuleba stated that the President of France Emmanuel Macron played an important role in granting Ukraine the status of a candidate for accession to the European Union, and the visit of the leaders of France, Germany, Romania and Italy to Kyiv was crucial.