RUSSIA INVADES UKRAINE

Shift in war’s front seen as grain leaves Ukraine; plant hit

Aug 7, 2022, 7:09 PM
A Ukrainian military journalist takes cover in a wheat field as he captures video while a tank team...
A Ukrainian military journalist takes cover in a wheat field as he captures video while a tank team with the 14th Mechanized Brigade of Prince Roman the Great fire on an enemy position on July 01, 2022 in the Donetsk District, Ukraine. In recent weeks, Russia has concentrated its firepower on Ukraine's Donbas region, where it has long backed two separatist regions at war with the Ukrainian government since 2014. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
(Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Six more ships carrying agricultural cargo held up by the war in Ukraine received authorization Sunday to leave the country’s Black Sea coast as analysts warned that Russia was moving troops and equipment in the direction of the southern port cities to stave off a Ukrainian counteroffensive.

Ukraine and Russia also accused each other of shelling Europe’s largest nuclear power plant.

The loaded vessels were cleared to depart from Chornomorsk and Odesa, according to the Joint Coordination Center, which oversees an international deal intended to get some 20 million tons of grain out of Ukraine to feed millions going hungry in Africa, the Middle East and parts of Asia.

Ukraine, Russia, Turkey and the United Nations signed the agreements last month to create a 111-nautical-mile sea corridor that would allow cargo ships to travel safely out of ports that Russia’s military had blockaded and through waters that Ukraine’s military had mined. Implementation of the deal, which is in effect for four months, has proceeded slowly since the first ship embarked on Aug. 1.

Four of the carriers cleared Sunday to leave Ukraine were transporting more than 219,000 tons of corn. The fifth was carrying more than 6,600 tons of sunflower oil and the sixth 11,000 tons of soya, the Joint Coordination Center said.

Three other cargo ships that left Friday passed their inspections and received clearance Sunday to pass through Turkey’s Bosporus Strait on the way to their final destinations, the Center said.

However, the vessel that left Ukraine last Monday with great fanfare as the first under the grain exports deal had its scheduled arrival in Lebanon delayed Sunday, according to a Lebanese Cabinet minister and the Ukraine Embassy. The cause of the delay was not immediately clear.

Ukrainian officials were initially skeptical of a grain export deal, citing suspicions that Moscow would try to exploit shipping activity to mass troops offshore or send long-range missiles from the Black Sea, as it has done multiple times during the war.

The agreements call for ships to leave Ukraine under military escort and to undergo inspections to make sure they carry only grain, fertilizer or food and not any other commodities. Inbound cargo vessels are checked to ensure they are not carrying weapons.

In a weekend analysis, Britain’s Defense Ministry said the Russian invasion that started Feb. 24 “is about to enter a new phase” in which the fighting would shift to a roughly 350-kilometer (217-mile) front line extending from near the city of Zaporizhzhia to Russian-occupied Kherson.

That area includes the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Station which came under fire late Saturday. Each side accused the other of the attack.

Ukraine’s nuclear power plant operator, Energoatom, said Russian shelling damaged three radiation monitors around the storage facility for spent nuclear fuels and that one worker was injured. Russian news agencies, citing the separatist-run administration of the plant, said Ukrainian forces fired those shells.

Russian forces have occupied the power station for months. Russian soldiers there took shelter in bunkers before Saturday’s attack, according to Energoatom.

Rafael Grossi, director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency, recently warned that the way the plant was being run and the fighting going on around it posed grave health and environmental threats.

For the last four months of the war, Russia has concentrated on capturing the Donbas region of eastern Ukraine, where pro-Moscow separatists have controlled some territory as self-proclaimed republics for eight years. Russian forces have made gradual headway in the region while launching missile and rocket attacks to curtail the movements of Ukrainian fighters elsewhere.

The Russians “are continuing to accumulate large quantities of military equipment” in a town across the Dnieper River from Russian-held Kherson, according to the Institute for the Study of War, a Washington think tank. Citing local Ukrainian officials, it said the preparations appeared designed to defend logistics routes to the city and establish defensive positions on the river’s left bank.

Kherson came under Russian control early in the war and Ukrainian officials have vowed to retake it. It is just 227 kilometers (141 miles) from Odesa, home to Ukraine’s biggest port, so the conflict escalating there could have repercussions for the international grain deal.

The city of Mykolaiv, a shipbuilding center that Russian forces bombard daily, is even closer to Odesa. The Mykolaiv region’s governor, Vitaliy Kim, said an industrial facility on the regional capital’s outskirts came under fire early Sunday.

Over the past day, five civilians were killed by Russian and separatist firing on cities in the Donetsk region, the part of Donbas still under Ukrainian control, the regional governor, Serhiy Haidai, reported.

He and Ukrainian government officials have repeatedly urged civilians to evacuate.

___

Andrew Wilks contributed reporting from Istanbul.

___

Follow AP’s coverage of the war in Ukraine at https://apnews.com/hub/russia-ukraine

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Russia invades Ukraine

Apple has removed VKontakte, a top Russian social media platform, from its app store, according to ...
Brian Fung, CNN

Apple removes Russian social media giant VK from app store

Apple has removed VKontakte, a top Russian social media platform, from its app store, according to the app's developer.
1 day ago
A destroyed bridge is seen on Sept. 24, 2022, in Kupiansk, Ukraine. Kupiansk is a front line city s...
JON GAMBRELL and ADAM SCHRECK, Associated Press

Russia poised to annex occupied Ukraine after sham vote

Russia is poised to formally annex parts of Ukraine after occupied areas held a Kremlin-orchestrated “referendum” — denounced as illegal and rigged by Kyiv and the West — to live under Moscow’s rule.
1 day ago
Facebook debuts its new company brand, Meta, at their headquarters on October 28, 2021 in Menlo Par...
DAVID KLEPPER, Associated Press

Meta disables Russian propaganda network targeting Europe

Facebook says it has identified and stopped a sprawling network of fake accounts that spread Russian propaganda about the invasion of Ukraine throughout Western Europe.
2 days ago
A large disturbance in the sea can be observed off the coast of the Danish island of Bornholm Tuesd...
MONIKA SCISLOWSKA and JAN M. OLSEN, Associated Press

Leaks on Russian gas pipelines raise concerns about sabotage

A series of unusual leaks on two natural gas pipelines running from Russia under the Baltic Sea to Germany have triggered concerns about sabotage.
2 days ago
KUPIANSK, UKRAINE - SEPTEMBER 24: Kraken Special Forces soldier Igor Shpatenko patrols the empty st...
JON GAMBRELL and ADAM SCHRECK, Associated Press

Russia’s call-up splits EU; Ukraine says it shows weakness

Ukraine's president says Russia’s rush to mobilize hundreds of thousands of recruits to staunch stinging losses is a tacit acknowledgment that its “army is not able to fight."
4 days ago
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - FEBRUARY 11: Indian Foreign Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar speaks with col...
MALLIKA SEN, Associated Press

India stays neutral on Ukraine war, previews G-20 term at UN

India’s foreign minister laid out the country’s plans for its turn at the G-20 presidency during the U.N General Assembly.
5 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to choose what MBA program is right for you: Ask these questions before you apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.
Cloud storage technology with 3d rendering drawer with files in cloud...
PC Laptops

How backing up your computer can help you relieve stress

Don't wait for something bad to happen before backing up your computer. Learn how to protect your data before disaster strikes.
young woman with stickers on laptop computer...
Les Olson

7 ways print marketing materials can boost your business

Custom print marketing materials are a great way to leave an impression on clients or customers. Read for a few ideas to spread the word about your product or company.
young woman throwing clothes to organize a walk in closet...
Lighting Design

How to organize your walk-in closet | 7 easy tips to streamline your storage today

Read our tips to learn how to organize your walk-in closet for more storage space. These seven easy tips can help you get the most out of your space.
Types of Computer Malware and Examples...
PC Laptops

5 Nasty Types of Computer Malware and Examples | Everything You Need to Know to Keep Your Computer and Family Safe

Here are the different types of computer malware and examples that could potentially infect your computer.
tips how to quit smoking...

7 Tips How to Quit Smoking | Quitting Smoking Might be One of the Hardest Things You Ever Do but Here’s Where You Can Start

Quitting smoking cigarettes can be incredibly difficult. Here are 7 tips how to quit smoking to help you on your quitting journey.
Shift in war’s front seen as grain leaves Ukraine; plant hit