ISW: Ukrainian attacks on at least four front sectors
3:22 p.m.: According to military experts from the American Institute for the Study of War (ISW), Ukraine has counterattacked on at least four sectors of the front. Fighting took place near the city of Bakhmut, near the city of Kreminna, in the south-west of the Donetsk region and in the west of the Zaporizhia region, according to the latest situation report on Friday (local time), citing information from Kiev, Moscow and Russia military bloggers.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Friday that Ukraine’s counter-offensive began a few days ago, but that Ukraine had not achieved the goals it had set itself. Kiev itself has so far kept a low profile on this, but has always emphasized that it will not comment on the start of its own offensive.
According to the ISW report, in recent days Russian military bloggers and media have “hasty” claimed that the Ukrainian counter-offensive has failed. After footage circulated of the front in Zaporizhia with western-supplied tanks damaged or destroyed, some prominent Russian ultra-nationalists claimed that this indicated a failure of a large-scale counter-offensive. Other ultranationalists, according to the ISW, warned that Ukrainian forces had not yet carried out the main offensive and pointed out that Russian forces had strengthened the second line of defense.
There was conflicting information about the course of the battle. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy spoke of “particularly difficult battles” in his evening video address on Friday.
UK: Ukraine makes progress in contested parts of the country
2:58 p.m.: Amid the start of Ukraine’s long-awaited major offensive, Britain anticipates military advances by the attacked country’s armed forces in some areas. The British Ministry of Defense announced on Saturday morning that there had been important Ukrainian military operations in the east and south of the country in the past 48 hours. While good progress has been made in some areas and the first Russian line of defense has been breached, Ukrainians are making slower progress elsewhere. Details of the areas were not given.
In addition, the British reported in their daily intelligence update that the Russian air force had been unusually active over southern Ukraine. However, it remains unclear whether tactical airstrikes were effective.
scholz wants to talk to Putin again “soon”.
11:59 am: Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) wants to keep in touch with Russian President Vladimir Putin. He also spoke to him after the war began. “I intend to do that again soon,” he said on Saturday at the 38th Evangelical Church Congress in Nuremberg.
A prerequisite for a “fair peace” is that Russia withdraws its troops, Scholz said. “That is what needs to be understood.” There were isolated calls from the Kirchentag audience to “negotiate”. Scholz replied: Call: “Negotiating is okay. The question is: who is negotiating with whom and about what.”
Scholz had previously outlined the principles of his policy since the start of the Russian war of aggression in Ukraine: the war must be prevented from escalating. “It was and is right that we act in a coordinated manner in everything we do. That we consider every step and that we don’t go it alone. We felt committed to this principle right from the start.” Borders in Europe should not be moved by force.
Rheinmetall boss: armaments manufacturers themselves were surprised by the stability of the weapons
07:26: The head of Germany’s largest armaments group, Rheinmetall, Armin Papperger, has admitted losses in Ukraine from weapon systems supplied by Germany, but at the same time praised their basic quality. “There are always losses in life,” said Papperger in an interview with the editorial network Germany (RND), but one does not talk about it.
In principle, the weapons systems developed and produced in Germany have proven themselves in the Ukraine, emphasized the armaments manager. “The feedback from Ukrainians on the German weapons is very positive,” he said. Some of the manufacturers themselves were surprised by their stability. “Take the PzH2000 self-propelled howitzer, whose chassis and weapon systems were supplied by Rheinmetall. We actually say that the barrel needs to be changed after about 4500 shots. But the Ukrainians shoot up to 20,000 shots – actually impossible, “says Papperger. “Other pipes would have buckled long ago.”
The EU’s promise to supply Ukraine with one million rounds of artillery ammunition for its defense against Russia within a year can only be fulfilled if governments fall back on their arsenals, said the Rheinmetall boss: “In the short term, Ukraine will have one million rounds of artillery ammunition only get if European armies make stocks available.”
The industry is working flat out to increase production capacities, but Rheinmetall itself wants to increase its artillery ammunition capacity from the current 450,000 rounds to 600,000 rounds per year in the next few months, Papperger explained. “However, it will take six to ten years before all European ammunition depots are filled.”
Putin: Nuclear weapons to be stationed in Belarus in July
4:10 a.m.: Russian President Vladimir Putin has announced that tactical nuclear weapons will be stationed in Belarus from July. Preparations in the relevant facilities would be completed on July 7 and 8, Putin said on Friday after a meeting with Belarusian ruler Alexander Lukashenko, according to the state news agency TASS. Then the transfer will begin. Everything is on schedule. This would start the deployment just before the NATO summit in Lithuania, a neighboring country of Belarus. The summit in the Lithuanian capital Vilnius will take place on July 11-12.
Putin had already announced on March 25 that he would transfer Russian nuclear weapons to the former Soviet republic of Belarus. He also justified the announced stationing of the weapons with the fact that the USA had nuclear weapons in Europe, including Germany, for years. The West had heavily criticized the plans. At the end of May, Lukashenko had already said that the announced transfer of arms to his country had already begun.
After the voluntary surrender of its nuclear weapons after the collapse of the Soviet Union, Belarus has received nuclear missiles for the first time since the 1990s. Iskander missiles, which can be equipped with nuclear warheads, are to be stationed. Several Belarusian fighter planes were also converted to the new weapons.
Water level in flooded parts of Ukraine is gradually falling
Saturday, June 10, 2:14 a.m.: After the partial destruction of the Kakhovka dam in southern Ukraine, the water level in parts of the affected areas is beginning to fall, according to Ukrainian authorities. 35 settlements on the right bank of the Dnipro River are still flooded, more than 3,700 houses are under water, “but the water is gradually receding,” said Oleksandr Prokudin, head of the Ukrainian military administration in the Kherson region, on Friday.
The water level in the region dropped from an average of around 5.4 meters to almost five meters over the course of Friday, Prokudin continued. His colleague in the Mykolayiv region, Vitali Kim, also stated that the level there is falling.
Putin: Ukrainian counteroffensive has begun
5:17 p.m.: According to Kremlin chief Vladimir Putin, a long-awaited Ukrainian counter-offensive is underway more than 15 months after the start of the war of aggression he ordered. “We can say with certainty that this offensive has begun,” Putin told journalists on Friday, according to the Interfax agency. Previously, some international media, citing Ukrainian military representatives, had suspected that the operation to liberate areas occupied by Russia had been going on for a few days. Kiev itself is keeping a low profile, but has always emphasized that it will not comment on the start of its own offensive.
Putin said there had been “intense fighting” for the past five days. He also claimed that the Ukrainians had not achieved their objectives on any sector of the front. However, this could not be verified independently. Since the beginning of the war, the Russian side in particular has repeatedly made false military statements.
Ministry denies reports of destruction of German miracle weapon
11.10 a.m.: According to the “Süddeutsche Zeitung” (SZ), reports that the Russian army destroyed an Iris-T-SLM air defense system supplied by Germany are not correct. The SZ learned this from security circles. A so-called kamikaze drone fired by Russia is said to have hit and destroyed the radar system for air surveillance. According to SZ information, the system works perfectly, at least that’s what Ukraine reported. There was talk of Russian “fake news”.
A spokeswoman for the Ministry of Defense emphasized on request: “We have no knowledge that a radar from the Iris-T-SLM system was destroyed.” The system was developed by the company Diehl from Baden-Württemberg, the high-performance radar that one The Hensoldt company is able to monitor an area covering an area of 40 kilometers.
So far, Germany has delivered two systems, each costing around 200 million euros as a whole; Targeted enemy attacks can be intercepted with guided missiles via launch pads. Kiev’s Mayor Vitali Klitschko emphasizes that it has a hit rate of 100 percent and has helped a lot to better protect the capital against Russian attacks. The Bundeswehr also wants to purchase up to six Iris-T SLM systems for Germany.