Russia hits third humanitarian aid base in Kherson in 5 days

A humanitarian aid center in Kherson burns after being hit by Russian forces on Dec. 20, 2023. (Social Media)

Russian forces struck a humanitarian aid center in Kherson for the third time within five days, according to Mykola Taranenko, the head of the emergency response unit for the Ukrainian Red Cross in Kherson Oblast. Taranenko revealed that the facility, operated by the Ukrainian Red Cross, was targeted and destroyed by three Shahed drones. The strike was part of a larger offensive, with 71 attacks launched by Russian forces on Kherson Oblast in the past day. The attacks involved various weaponry, including mortars, artillery, Grad multiple-launch rocket systems, anti-aircraft guns, tanks, drones, and aviation. The strikes resulted in casualties and damage to infrastructure, including a damaged factory in Kherson.

Russia reducing aviation activity in Ukraine after losing several Su-34 jets

Russian forces have reduced aviation activity and the use of glide bombs in southern Ukraine following the downing of three Russian Su-34 fighter-bombers by Ukraine's military on December 21-22, as reported by the Institute for the Study of War (ISW) on December 24. Ukrainian Air Force spokesman Yurii Ihnat and military observer Kostiantyn Mashovets noted the decrease, indicating that Russian troops have limited their use of glide bombs and air strikes in southern Ukraine and scaled back manned aviation near occupied Crimea. The reduction in Russian glide bomb strikes may present an opportunity for Ukrainian forces to operate more freely in certain areas, according to the ISW's assessment. The decrease suggests that Russian military leadership is concerned about Ukrainian air defense capabilities following recent losses of fighter jets.

Fighting for Marinka continues, Ukrainian Armed Forces remain within its administrative borders

Fighting for Marinka continues, Ukrainian Armed Forces remain within its administrative borders

Ukrainian Forces Deny Russian Claim of Capturing Marinka in Donetsk Oblast

Contrary to Russian propaganda claims, Ukrainian forces have refuted reports of the capture of Marinka in Donetsk Oblast. Oleksandr Shtupun, spokesman for the Joint Press Centre of the Tavriia Defence Forces, clarified that fighting in Marinka is ongoing, and Ukrainian military personnel remain within the city's administrative borders.

Shtupun emphasized that, despite the intense fighting, Marinka has not been completely captured, debunking the Russian narrative. The city, however, has suffered extensive damage, described as being "razed to the ground."

The Russian propaganda claim originated from statements attributed to Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu, who reportedly informed President Vladimir Putin about the alleged capture of Marinka. Putin sees the capture of Marinka as a strategic move to push the Armed Forces of Ukraine away from occupied Donetsk, providing Russian forces with a broader operational space. The situation in Marinka remains dynamic, and accurate information is crucial amid conflicting reports from different sources.