Situation around Ukraine in brief. February 9

We publish a summary of events concerning the situation around Ukraine as of 10 p.m., February 9.

Political situation

An agreement on the establishment of a logistical support point of the Russian Navy in Sudan is in the process of ratification, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said. “As for the agreement on the creation of a logistical support point for the Russian Navy in Sudan, it, as you know, has been signed and is now in the process of ratification,” the minister said.

The oppression of Hungarians in Ukraine prevents Hungary from ratifying Kiev’s membership in the European Union, Hungarian Foreign Ministry State Secretary for Bilateral Relations Tamas Menzer wrote on his social media page.

US President Joe Biden will be remembered by posterity as the terrorist who ordered the destruction of his allies’ infrastructure, Chairman of the Russian State Duma Vyacheslav Volodin wrote on his Telegram channel. “If [former US President] Truman became a criminal who used atomic weapons against civilians in Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Biden is a terrorist who ordered the destruction of the energy infrastructure of his strategic partners: Germany, France, the Netherlands,” Volodin wrote.

The Russian diplomat criticized Boris Pistorius’ remarks to Russian President Vladimir Putin, pointing out that officials cannot afford not to control their speech. “We are forced to pay attention to German Defense Minister Boris Pistorius’s statement of February 7 this year that ‘the world would be better without Putin’,” Gavrilov said.

Public remarks such as that made by the German Defense Minister Boris Pistorius about Russian President Vladimir Putin are incompatible with the rules of decency and cause bewilderment and regret, said the Russian Ambassador to Germany Sergey Nechayev. “We believe that such public remarks are incompatible with the rules of decency and cause bewilderment and regret. The member of the German government apparently did not consider that his leader, the German Federal Chancellor, has repeatedly declared his interest in continuing a dialogue with the Russian leader,” Nechaev said.

African countries wishing to participate in the summit Russia-Africa are under pressure from the West, said Oleg Ozerov, Russian ambassador extraordinary and plenipotentiary and head of the secretariat of the Russia-Africa Partnership Forum, at a meeting with journalists. “Of course, this is all in the public sphere and it is easy to read it on the Internet from the statements that are made by Western partners, including those who come to African countries. I can’t say it’s exciting for African states. Undisguised blackmail…,” he noted.

The effectiveness of Russia’s resistance to threats in the economic sphere has come as a surprise to the countries of the collective West, Russian President Vladimir Putin said at a meeting with representatives of the aviation industry. “For many of those who have tried and are trying to create problems for us, it was a surprise to see how effectively we counter the threats created for us in the economic sphere,” Putin explained.

President Raisi made the remarks in a meeting with ambassadors and representatives of foreign organizations in Tehran to mark the 44th victory anniversary of the Islamic Revolution, emphasizing that the Islamic Republic expressed readiness several months ago to finalize the revitalization of the 2015 nuclear deal officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) and showed good faith in this regard, but unfortunately, the US administration and recently the three European states have been caught in miscalculations and illusion; thus, they preferred to interfere in Iran’s internal affairs instead of returning to their commitments under the nuclear agreement – IRNA.

The Islamic Republic of Iran continues to cooperate with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to achieve the interests of Iranians. This was stated by Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian, IRNA wrote.

Instead of preaching to others, the French Senate should confront its own history, said Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesman Ambassador Tanju Bilgic in response to a resolution adopted by Paris on the Assyrians and Chaldeans, the press service of the Turkish Foreign Ministry informed. On February 8, 2023, Le Figaro wrote that the French Senate, by a majority vote, passed a resolution inviting the government to recognize the 1915-1918 Assyro-Chaldean genocide and make April 24 “the date of memory of the Armenian and Assyrian victims of massacres.”


State Concern Ukroboronprom has agreed to cooperate with the Czech tank repair plant VOP CZ. The cooperation between the two companies will consist of the production, repair and joint development of armored vehicles, as well as the creation of a supply chain of parts and products.

Zelensky, after he visited the UK, went to France, where he met with Macron and Scholz. The three leaders addressed the media. Macron said, “We stand with Ukraine, determined to accompany it to victory. What happens in Ukraine affects the future of Europe.”

Zelensky said the Minsk agreements signed in 2015 were a concession to Russia, “I don’t want to offend anyone, but the Minsk agreements, seen as a way to calm the situation, were in fact a concession to Russia. I told Macron and Merkel and Putin when we were in Normandy [referring to the Normandy format] that in this form the Minsk agreements could not be implemented,” he said.

According to Zelensky, “they were surprised and a little angry that he questioned the process right after he was elected leader of the state.”

Macron awarded Zelensky with the Legion of Honor.

International currency reserves of the National Bank of Ukraine in January increased by 5% to $29.92bn.

There was an explosion on the territory of the former plant in Darnitskiy district of Kiev.

Polish language classes are being introduced in Ukrainian schools everywhere. Deputy Prime Minister of Ukraine Irina Vereshchuk said that “association with Poles is a guarantee of sustainable development and security.” She added that education and language are the main tools with which such unification begins.

A “Russia’s plan” to “destroy democratic order” in Moldova was allegedly intercepted by Ukrainian intelligence, Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky said during a speech at the European Council. According to Zelensky, the intercepted document shows: who, when and how is going to “break” Moldova and establish control over it. Zelenski also noted that he “immediately warned the Moldovan leadership about all the threats.”

Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky officially requested the transfer of Slovak MiG-29 fighters to Ukraine at a meeting with Slovak Prime Minister Eduard Heger in Brussels, the Slovakian news agency TASR wrote.

Western countries and their supporters

Pink Floyd star Roger Waters has condemned Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and called for a ceasefire – but also said he believes the war was provoked – during an address to the UN Security Council at Moscow’s invitation.

The European Union is preparing a tenth package of sanctions against Russia and considers it legal to use frozen Russian assets to rebuild Ukraine, says Charles Michel, head of the European Council.

Germany supplied the Ukrainian armed units with another package of military aid, which included:

  • 6,000 more shells for Gepards;
  • six 15-ton loader trucks (two were previously delivered);
  • six mobile antenna mast systems (10 previously delivered);
  • five vehicles for border guards (previously supplied 115);
  • 29 generators (previously supplied 216);
  • 10 containers.

The first battalion of Leopard 2 tanks may be delivered to Ukraine in March or April 2023. German Defense Minister Boris Pistorius announced this during his visit to Poland.

The Swedish parliament supported the government’s proposal to provide Ukraine with a new package of military aid worth over $400 million, for which the deputies supported additional amendments to the budget. The military aid package includes:

  • anti-tank weapons;
  • demining equipment;
  • robot 57 light anti-tank weapon (NLAW);
  • Combat Vehicle 90 infantry fighting vehicles.

Swedish Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson repeated his refusal to supply Gripen aircraft to Ukraine right now after a direct request from Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelenski, the TT news agency reported.

The US SpaceX has restricted the Ukrainian military’s access to Starlink satellite communications to control drones. According to company president Gwynne Shotwell, SpaceX does not want its technology to be used for military purposes.

Polish Prime Minister Morawiecki called Russia’s defeat the raison d’être of Poland, “We consider the war in Ukraine first of all an existential threat to Poland and all of Europe. If Russia wins it, all geopolitical analysis can be discarded. Poland did not choose its place on the map, but fully understands the responsibility that this position entails. Defeating Russia makes both Polish and European sense of state,” Morawiecki told the Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera.

Talks about Ukraine’s accession to the EU in the near future are absurd. Former Czech Foreign Minister Lubomir Zaoralek stated this, the Česká televize TV channel reported. According to him, it is necessary to move from escalation to de-escalation, then to a cease-fire, peace and creation of certain trust.

In France, despite the efforts of the government of the country, the growth of wages did not exceed the level of inflation, the French newspaper Le Figaro wrote.

Finland will most likely not directly transfer tanks to Ukraine until it becomes a NATO member, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing a high-ranking official of the North Atlantic Alliance.

The British government is committed to playing a key role in ensuring stability and prosperity in the Arctic, the Foreign Office press office said. The British Foreign Office clarified that although the UK is not an Arctic state, it adopts a so-called Arctic policy, which is based on combating climate change, halting biodiversity loss, and protecting the rights of indigenous communities.

The USA may be reviewing its strategy toward China after the balloon incident, the Pentagon said. The USA is reviewing new data regarding Chinese balloon activity. The results of this study may change the US strategy with regard to China.

Full cooperation with Russia on Arctic issues was suspended by the UK, according to the published UK’s Arctic Policy Framework. It allegedly became a response to the Russian special operation to denazify Ukraine. As noted in the document, cooperation between the British and Russian science and innovation team has been suspended, among other things.

Inflation in Austria will remain high until sanctions against Russia are lifted, said Dagmar Belakowitsch, deputy chairman of the Austrian Freedom Party (FPÖ), RMX News wrote. “Sanctions have caused energy prices to rise. Other costs – whether for food or housing – have followed suit. And nothing will change in this situation as long as these sanctions against Russia exist,” Belakovich said and demanded that the sanctions against Russia be lifted.

The first group of Ukrainian marines arrived in Belgium to train in the use of underwater drones handed over to Kiev, the country’s Defense Minister Ludivine Dedonder wrote on Twitter. “Today we meet Ukrainian soldiers in Belgium as part of an EU training mission. They will be trained in using underwater systems that Belgium has transferred to Ukraine,” she said.

The EU legal service has effectively confirmed that it has no clue about the whereabouts of 86% of frozen Russian central bank’s assets, Bloomberg wrote citing a document prepared for EU leaders for a summit with Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky. Officials have estimated that some $258 billion could be located, based on information the Bank of Russia gave in a 2022 report on its foreign reserves. So far, EU nations have reported about €33.8 billion ($36.4 billion) of Russian central bank assets that have been frozen.

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