Ukraine news LIVE — Putin to order ‘second conscription’ as Russia’s frontline losses mount after embarrassing retreat

VLADIMIR Putin looks set to order a “second wave of mobilisation” after Russian forces have faced heavy losses on the battlefield in Ukraine.

According to an advisor to the Minister of Internal Affairs of Ukraine, Vladimir Putin plans to draft “500,000-700,000” Russians in to the army.

Anton Gerashchenko said: “Russia is getting ready for 2nd wave of mobilisation in January. The plan is to draft 500,000-700,000. The 300,000 drafted before – already killed/wounded/demoralised.”

It comes as Sergei Surovikin, dubbed “General Armageddon” by the Russian media due to his ruthlessness, is under increasing pressure to justify his retreat from Kherson last week.

Surovikin called for the retreat, arguing it would allow the Kremlin to save valuable equipment and manpower. However, Russian losses continue to mount with them today passing 85,000, according to the Ukrainian Ministry of Defence.

Read our Ukraine-Russia live blog below for the latest updates…

  • Putin puts ruthless ‘General Armageddon’ under pressure to deliver

    PUTIN is furiously demanding his top general in Ukraine deliver results after Russian forces were forced into a humiliating retreat from Kherson.

    Sergei Surovikin, dubbed “General Armageddon” by the Russian media due to his ruthlessness, is under increasing pressure to justify his retreat from Kherson last week.

    Surovikin called for the retreat, arguing it would allow the Kremlin to save valuable equipment and manpower. However, Russian losses continue to mount with them today passing 85,000, according to the Ukrainian Ministry of Defence.

    Now, some experts are suggesting an enraged Putin placed Surovikin in charge of the Russian forces in Ukraine simply to act as a “fall guy” when the war inevitably goes wrong.

    “It was obvious that Surovikin’s appointment and the praise heaped upon him were at least partly due to the need to create a figure with a mandate for ‘shameful’ actions that Putin didn’t want to take in his own name,” said Alexander Baunov, a former Russian diplomat.

  • ‘Two UAVs have already been shot down’

    According to reports, two drones have been shot down in Crimean city of Sevastopol.

    In a statement, the region’s Russian-installed governor, Mikhail Razvozhaev, said: “Our air defence forces are working right now.

    “There is an attack by drones. According to preliminary information, two UAVs (unmanned aerial vehicles) have already been shot down. All forces and services are on alert.” 

  • Ex-Nato ambassador warns Serbia is ‘playing with fire’

    Vesko Garčević, former ambassador of Montenegro for NATO and a professor at Boston University, warned Russia-linked Serbia is “playing with fire” when speaking to The Sun Online.

    ”Serbia will want to escalate this as much as they can, and if they go further, it could spiral out of control,” Mr Garčević told The Sun Online.

    ”The US, UK, and UN must become more involved in pre-emptive action.

    “They must tell Belgrade this isn’t a game, and it won’t be tolerated.”

  • Zelensky spoke to Macron about ‘radiation safety and the situation at Zaporizhzhia’

    Zelensky has said that “the demilitarization of the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant is extremely important”.

    During his nightly address, the Ukrainian President said: “I spoke with French President Emmanuel Macron about the implementation of several points of our Peace Formula at once. Namely, about radiation safety and the situation at the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant, as well as about the energy security of Ukraine and Europe.

    “We are working to ensure the implementation of the IAEA order to stop any hostile activity against Ukrainian nuclear facilities. And for this, the demilitarization of the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant is extremely important. Russia must withdraw all its militants from there and stop shelling the station.”

  • ‘Ukrainian side continues to take the most drastic measures to prevent the use of Iranian weapons’

    According to CNN, Ukrainian and Iran officials have met to discuss recent allegations that Russia have been supplied with Iranian drones.

    Speaking to CNN, Oleg Nikolenko, the spokesperson for Ukraine’s ministry of foreign affairs said: “Such an expert meeting did take place. 

    “I cannot disclose the details, but I can assure you that the Ukrainian side continues to take the most drastic measures to prevent the use of Iranian weapons by Russia for the war against Ukraine.”

  • Japanese government announce support for Ukraine

    The Japanese government has announced it will provide generators and solar lanterns to Ukraine to help deal with the “large-scale blackout”.

    The government released a statement saying: ” The large-scale blackout has occurred in various areas of Ukraine caused by destruction of a large part of energy infrastructure facilities.

    “While the winter gets colder and days get shorter every day in Ukraine, the aid has significant importance as winterization support for those who cannot use heating facilities and lighting equipment due to the blackout.”

  • German Chancellor sends warning

    Olaf Scholz, the German chancellor has sent out a warning to his country that they must be “ready for an escalation”.

    During a conference in Berlin Scholz said: “In view of the development of the war and Russia’s visible and growing failures … we must be ready for an escalation.”

  • Locals in Kherson forced to drink water from river 

    By Jerome Starkey, defence editor

    LONG-suffering locals in newly-freed Kherson are resorting to drawing water from the mighty Dnipro River to survive.

    Residents young and old brave missiles and mortars to fill bottles from the waterway that marks the edge of Ukrainian-held territory.

    Those living there today have no central heating or power after missiles destroyed power stations.

    The water stopped working on November 9 when pumping stations were targeted.

    Read more from Jerome Starkey on the ground in Ukraine here.

  • Ukraine accuses Russia of ‘nuclear blackmail’ as shells hit Zaporizhzhia

    A top Ukrainian official has slammed Russian forces, accusing them of attacking humanitarian centres and engaging in “nuclear blackmail.”

    “Russian terrorists are shelling humanitarian delivery points, continuing nuclear blackmail – a pitiful tactic of military losers,” Andriy Yermak, chief of the presidential staff, said via Telegram.

    “Well, for every such action there is a Ukrainian counteraction,” he added.

  • Russia reportedly preparing a second round of mobilisation

    According to Anton Gerashchenko, an advisor to the Minister of Internal Affairs of Ukraine, the Kremlin is preparing another round of mobilisation in January.

    Taking to Twitter, he said: “Russia is getting ready for 2nd wave of mobilization in January. The plan is to draft 500,000-700,000.

    “The 300,000 drafted before – already killed/wounded/demoralized.”

  • Zelensky hails EU for latest aid package

    President Zelensky took to Twitter this afternoon to praise the EU after a new round of aid was announced.

    This latest package will see the EU provide macro-financial aid worth €2.5billion.

    Mr Zelensky thanked the EU for its “solidarity and support.”

  • Damage to Ukraine’s energy grid is ‘colossal’ claims energy operator

    Volodymyr Kudrytskyi, chief executive officer of Ukrenergo, Ukraine’s energy grid operator, has said the damage to the country’s infrastructure is “colossal”.

    Russia has been engaged in a bombing campaign targeting Ukraine’s ability to produce electricity ahead of the winter.

    Ukrainians across the nation have been forced to endure rolling blackouts in a bid to save energy.

  • Ukrainians facing their ‘darkest days’ warns World Health Organisation

    Ukraine and its health service are facing a crisis this winter following months of Russian bombing, said the World Health Organisation (WHO.)

    “This winter will be life-threatening for millions of people in Ukraine,” said WHO’s regional director for Europe, Dr Hans Henri P Kluge.

    “The devastating energy crisis, the deepening mental health emergency, constraints on humanitarian access and the risk of viral infections will make this winter a formidable test for the Ukrainian health system and the Ukrainian people, but also for the world and its commitment to support Ukraine.

    “Ukraine’s health system is facing its darkest days in the war so far. Having endured more than 700 attacks, it is now also a victim of the energy crisis.”

  • No progress made on Zaporizhzhia safe zone agreement – Kremlin

    There has been no “substantive” progress made on the deal to create a safe zone around the Zaporizhzhia powerplant, the Kremlin has said according to the Independent.

    Europe’s largest nuclear plant has been subject to a series of bombardments in recent days, causing fears of a Chornobyl-style disaster in Ukraine.

    The UN’s nuclear watchdog said both Ukraine and Russia are “playing with fire” by fighting near the plant.

  • EU to provide a further 2.5billion Euros to Ukraine

    Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission, confirmed today that the EU is set to provide a further 2.5billion Euros of aid to Ukraine.

    Taking to Twitter, she confirmed the EU is planning to another 18billion in 2023.

    This money will be used “for urgent repairs and fast recovery leading to a successful reconstruction.”

  • Elon Musk’s Starlink at work in Kherson

    Billionaire Elon Musk has supplied his Starlink technology to Ukraine since the outbreak of Russia’s invasion.

    The tech allows Ukraine to have internet access despite Russia’s best attempts to limit the nation’s connection to the web.

    Our Defence Editor Jerome Starkey, who is live on the ground in Kherson and took the photo below, described the technology as a “lifesaver.”

  • One dead as Russia bombs school in Zaporizhzhia

    A social worker has been killed after Russian forces attacked a school in the region of Zaporizhzhia.

    The building had been converted into a humanitarian distribution centre.

    Two other Ukrainians were injured.

  • On the ground in liberated Kherson

    Our Defence Editor Jerome Starkey is live on the ground in the recently liberated city of Kherson, here is what he had to say this morning.

    “The blasts of artillery duels are echoing over Kherson.

    “Rarely half an hour goes by without the ominous sound of an explosion.

    “We hope that most are outgoing.

    “The locals rarely flinch – even when the shockwave from an outgoing round is enough to set off car alarms.

    “We were just in the east of the city, which is bearing the brunt of incoming mortars, and the Ukrainians we were with hurried us into a cellar to take cover.”

  • Ukraine accuses Russia of ‘nuclear blackmail’ as shells hit Zaporizhzhia

    A top Ukrainian official has slammed Russian forces, accusing them of attacking humanitarian centres and engaging in “nuclear blackmail.”

    “Russian terrorists are shelling humanitarian delivery points, continuing nuclear blackmail – a pitiful tactic of military losers,” Andriy Yermak, chief of the presidential staff, said via Telegram.

    “Well, for every such action there is a Ukrainian counteraction,” he added.

  • A glimpse at winter in war-torn Ukraine

    Ukrainian soldiers are seemingly in good spirits despite the harsh conditions they face this winter.

    The Ukrainian Ministry of Defence took to Twitter this morning to share a clip of smiling troops marching through the snow.

    “Ukrainian winter that helps us,” the tweet read.

  • Russia does ‘not intend’ to topple Ukraine’s government, Kremlin mouthpiece claims

    Russia no longer has the intention of replacing Ukraine’s government, Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov has said this morning.

    Putin “does not intend the ‘special operation’ to change the government in Ukraine”, he told Sky News.

    This is a different tune to Russia’s original plan in Ukraine, where they hoped to install a Moscow-friendly government.

  • MoD provides its latest update on the war in Ukraine

    The British Ministry of Defence shared another update on the Russian invasion of Ukraine today.

    The statement read: “On 18 November 2022, multiple Russian and Ukrainian media outlets reported that an attack took place at an oil terminal in Novorssiysk port on Russia’s Black Sea coast. A major base of Russia’s Black Sea Fleet (BSF) is close to the oil terminal.

    “The BSF relocated many of its submarine operations to Novorssiysk after its Sevastopol base in occupied Crimea was struck by Ukraine over the summer. Russian commanders will likely be concerned about threats to the Novorssiysk-based amphibious landing ship flotilla.

    “These vessels are relatively vulnerable without escorts and have assumed a more important role in supplying Russian forces in Ukraine since the Kerch Bridge was damaged in October.

    “Full details of this incident are yet to emerge. However, any demonstration of a Ukrainian capability to threaten Novorssiysk would highly likely represent a further strategic challenge for the BSF.

    “It would also further undermine Russia’s already reduced maritime influence in the Black Sea.”

  • Pictured: Desperate civilians in Kherson forced to drink water from river

    Residents from Kherson have been pictured filling bottles from the waterway that marks the edge of Ukrainian-held territory.

  • Russian losses reach 85,000 in nine months

    Nine months into Putin’s bloodthirsty invasion of Ukraine, Russia’s casualties have reportedly hit 85,000.

    This number, which has been reported by Ukraine’s armed forces, increased by 400 in the last 24 hours.

    Russia was driven from Kherson last week but continues to bombard Ukrainian infrastructure across the country.

  • Russian forces accused of burning soldier’s corpses in occupied Kherson

    Putin’s Russian forces have been accused of dumping dead soldiers in landfill sites in Kherson where the “stench of burnt flesh filled the air”.

    According to reports, residents had seen Russian soldiers carrying bags that were then set on fire, filling the air with a large cloud of smoke and a stench of burning flesh.

    Speaking to the Guardian, Iryna, a Kherson resident said: “Every time our army shelled the Russians there, they moved the remains to the landfill and burned them.”

    Kherson has recently been re-captured by Ukrainian forces after they launched a counter-offensive.

    Meanwhile, the Zaporizhzhia plant – Europe’s largest nuclear station – has been subject to intense shelling over the last three days, heightening fears of a nuclear disaster as the Ukraine war rages on.

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