Ukraine war: Russian officer 'killed', US tanks 'will burn', Norway aid

Ukraine war: Russian officer 'killed', US tanks 'will burn', Norway aid

Russia shows video of "dead" Black Sea fleet commander

Ukraine's special forces said yesterday that they had killed Moscow's top admiral in Crimea - along with 33 other officers - in last week's missile attack on the headquarters of Russia's Black Sea fleet in the port of Sevastopol.

The Russian defence ministry did not immediately respond to claims around the death of Admiral Viktor Sokolov, the commander of the Black Sea fleet and one of Russia's most senior navy officers.

However, in video released today by the ministry, a man who appeared to be Admiral Sokolov was shown attending a meeting via a remote video feed.

Kremlin says US Abrams tanks delivered to Ukraine "will burn"

Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov commented on the arrival of the US Abrams tanks in Ukraine, saying they “will burn” like other weapons and will not alter the situation in the conflict zone.

On Monday, the Pentagon confirmed 31 US Abrams tanks have arrived in Ukraine.

Peskov said that despite their significance, no single type of weapon could change the balance of power on the battlefield and alter the course or the outcome of the war.

“​​All this can in no way affect the essence of the special military operation or its outcome,” he said, using the term that Putin and Russian leaders use to refer to the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Norway to provide€87m in humanitarian aid to Ukraine

Norway will provide one billion krone (€87m) in humanitarian support to Ukraine, the Norwegian government announced on Tuesday.

The humanitarian funding aims to “ensure that the most vulnerable, children, refugees and internally displaced persons” receive vital assistance, such as “shelter, food, water and sanitation, education, health care and psychosocial support, as well as protection against sexualised and gender-based violence," the government said in a press release.

“Russia's brutal warfare causes great suffering to the Ukrainian civilian population," Norwegian Foreign Minister Anniken Huitfeldt said, adding that Ukrainians “need our help to get through another winter of war."

The aid will be distributed through existing programs for Ukraine created by the United Nations and the Red Cross.

Norway, which is a founding member of NATO, previously announced it was sending F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine. It also donated anti-aircraft missiles, de-mining sets and additional funding to secure gas and electricity supply in the country.

Russia's Black Sea Fleet under pressure – UK

In its update on the Ukrainian war this morning, the UK's Ministry of Defence said attacks on Russia's Black Sea fleet in recent days and weeks have been "more damaging and more coordinated than thus far in the war".

According to the ministry, Russia's Black Sea Fleet has faced "severe but localised" damage – not enough to prevent it from fulfilling its core mission, but enough to put it into defensive mode.

"Its ability to continue wider regional security patrols and enforce its de facto blockade of Ukrainian ports will be diminished," the ministry said. "It also likely has a degraded ability to defend its assets in port and to conduct routine maintenance.

"A dynamic, deep strike battle is underway in the Black Sea. This is likely forcing Russia into a reactive posture whilst demonstrating that Ukraine’s military can undermine the Kremlin’s symbolic and strategic power projection from its warm water port in occupied Sevastopol."

Russian drone strikes pummel Ukraine overnight

Russia attacked Ukraine with 38 Iranian-made Shahed drones overnight, the Ukrainian Air Force said on Tuesday, claiming Ukrainian air defences destroyed 26 of the devices.

The Odessa region was one of the positions struck overnight by Russian forces, who in particular targeted the port of Izmail.

The assault lasted two hours, regional governor Oleg Kiper wrote on Telegram, claiming that "most of the drones" had been shot down.

"Unfortunately, the port infrastructure was hit in the Izmail district", he explained, also lamenting two injured truck drivers, one of whom was hospitalised.

The river port of Izmail, located on the Danube on the border with Nato member Romania, has become one of the main export routes for Ukrainian agricultural products to the Black Sea since the agreement allowing Ukraine to freely transit its production was abandoned in July.

Russian assaults in the southern regions of Odessa and Mykolaïv have since multiplied.

This latest offensive follows a Russian attack described as "massive" by the Odessa authorities on Monday. The region was attacked by 19 Shahed drones and missiles, including two supersonic Onyxes.

Also in the south, in the Kherson region, four people were wounded after Russian attacks on Monday evening, according to Governor Oleksandr Prokudin.