Situation around Ukraine in brief. January 9

09.01.2023, Moscow.

We publish a summary of events concerning the situation around Ukraine as of 7 p.m., January 9.

Political situation

In Belorussia, a tactical exercise with Russia will be held from January 16 to February 1, reported the Belorussian Ministry of Defense. It is reported that the Russian aircraft participating in these exercises has arrived in Belarus. Earlier on, the monitoring group Belaruski Gayun drew attention to a large number of military helicopters, landing on the territory of Belorussia during the day. According to the Belorussian Defense Ministry, all airfields and ranges of the Air Force and Air Defense Forces will be involved in the exercise.

Iran and Russia will introduce zero duty rates for 90% of goods. Rahmatullah Harmali, director general of the trade office of the Trade Development Organization of Iran, said this in an interview with Sputnik Iran.

According to him, Iran’s trade with Russia will grow very well. For instance, Iranian exports are expected to increase by $4 billion in the next four years. Karmali also recalled agreements reached with Russia on shipping and the joint development of a SWIFT analogue for bilateral transactions.

Russia’s Defense Ministry proposes to increase the money allowances of employees of a number of security agencies by 10.5% as of October, 2023.

Minister of Defence and Military Veterans of South Africa Thandi Modise commented on an incident with the Lady R ship. Earlier, a senior US official said Washington was concerned by the support the South African armed forces provided to the Lady R, including allowing it to enter and move cargo at a naval base while its automatic identification system was switched off. The USA states that this is a Russian merchant ship whose owner has allegedly carried weapons for the Kremlin. The country’s defense minister shrugged off US concerns, saying Washington “threatens Africa, not just South Africa, of having anything that is even smelling of Russia.” – The Wall Street Journal.


Vladimir Zelensky had a telephone conversation with newly elected Slovenian President Nataša Pirc Musar. He reportedly discussed defense cooperation with her and invited her to participate in the implementation of the peace formula. He thanked her for her support of Ukraine’s European integration.

The January 1 strike on the location of Russian mobilizers in Makeevka was part of a plan to prevent a new offensive by Russian troops. The spokesman for Ukraine’s Main Intelligence Directorate Skibitsky told the Italian Corriere della Sera about this.

Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmitry Kuleba said that Kiev was grateful to Western partners for military assistance, but, according to him, none of the allies had done enough.

A new batch of ammunition for HIMARS MRLSs was sent to the Ukrainian armed units. And their more intensive use has already been noted. According to Ukrainian sources, the priority direction of the M142 MLRS will be Artemovsk-Soledarsk.

The Ukrainian authorities intend to take away the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra completely from the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (Moscow Patriarchate), the head of the Rada Committee on Humanitarian Policy Nikita Poturayev said. The State Service of Ethnopolitics and Freedom of Conscience “will work accordingly,” Poturaev added.

The authorities of the city of Kamenskoye in Dnepropetrovsk region do not intend to demolish the bust of Leonid Brezhnev before the end of the military conflict. “Performance of works on the removal of the bust of Leonid Brezhnev requires additional funding, but during martial law, expenditures from the city budget, first of all, are directed to create conditions for a timely and prompt response to the needs of financial support of the measures of territorial defense, protection of the population security and ensuring the work of public facilities, functioning of the public sector, utilities,” stated in the city hall.

Western countries and their supporters

Former US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and former US Secretary of Defense Robert Gates called for giving Ukraine tanks and long-range missiles. They believe that Ukraine must win the war so that the USA and its allies do not have to fight Russia in the future.

Nuclear weapons will not be placed on the territory of Finland after joining NATO – the country’s Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto. In addition, the foreign minister said that Finland did not impose preconditions when applying for NATO membership because it did not want to narrow the scope of its activities.

Germany will transfer 40 infantry fighting vehicles from its army reserves to Ukraine – Der Spiegel.

The Swedish government aims to restore civil conscription, Swedish Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson has said.

For the first time since the start of the conflict in Ukraine, the UK is considering supplying British Challenger 2 tanks to Kiev – media.

Poland starts the creation of new division in the east of the country – Polish Defense Minister.

Only 5.4% of the grain exported as part of the food deal was sent to countries in need, the Turkish Ministry of Agriculture said.

The Moldovan Defense Ministry said that Germany will deliver Piranha armored personnel carriers to the National Army of the republic on January 10, these deliveries are provided by the agreement of the defense departments of the two countries from 2021.

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