Here is the situation on Monday, November 16, 2023 (631 Day)
The Czech Republic has taken action by freezing Russian state-owned assets. In return, Russia has recognized that Ukrainians now hold territory on the illegally occupied side of the Dnipro River.
Jan Lipavský, the Czech foreign minister, has announced the freezing of Russian-owned property on Czech soil. He stated, “At my suggestion, the government today approved the freezing of Russian state assets in the Czech Republic. The commercial activities supporting the harm to Ukrainians will cease here.”
In response, Russia declared that Ukraine joining the US-led NATO military alliance would be unacceptable. Maria Zakharova, spokesperson for Russia’s foreign ministry, emphasized, “Whether in parts or in any form, Ukraine’s accession to NATO is unacceptable for Russia,” as reported by Reuters.
Tragically, a Russian missile claimed the lives of two emergency workers in southern Ukraine. They were responding to an earlier attack when the missile struck, causing injuries to at least seven others. The strikes in the Zaporizhzhia region involved three missiles fired by Russian forces within about half an hour, according to Yuriy Malashko, the regional governor.
In another development, the European Union (EU) has proposed a ban on the export of machine tools and machinery parts used by Russia to manufacture weapons targeting Ukraine. This measure is part of the EU’s 12th sanctions package, which also includes a ban on diamonds, as reported by Bloomberg.
Russia has acknowledged, for the first time, that Ukrainian troops have established positions on the Russian-held side of the Dnipro River. According to a Wall Street Journal report, Ukrainian marines are reinforcing positions in three villages on the eastern bank of the Dnipro. This includes the placement of armored Humvees and at least one infantry-fighting vehicle. They have also successfully cut off a crucial road used by Russians to resupply troops in the area. In response to necessary repairs, Ukraine’s state railway has limited grain deliveries to Odesa, a key Black Sea port for the country.
NATO has announced plans to purchase six Boeing aircraft, replacing its aging fleet of Awacs surveillance planes. This move aims to enhance the alliance’s capabilities in tracking potential threats from Russia, as reported by AFP.
In a shift from some EU members, Hungary has called for a review of the EU’s policy towards Ukraine. Disagreeing with Germany, Lithuania, Finland, and Ireland, Hungary is pushing for a slower approach in bringing Kyiv closer to the bloc and providing more aid.
Pope Francis has urged the faithful to regularly pray for peace in Ukraine, the Middle East, Sudan, and other war-torn regions.
According to the UK’s Ministry of Defence, Vladimir Putin is expected to announce his presidential candidacy before the end of 2023.
SOURCE: Al Jazeera