US says Russia is fabricating evidence in Ukraine PoW deaths | TSWT News

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US officials believe Russia is fabricating evidence about last week’s deadly attack on a POW prison in a separatist region of eastern Ukraine.

US intelligence officials have determined that Russia is looking for false evidence to make it appear that Ukrainian forces were responsible for the July 29 attack on Olenivka prison, which left 53 dead and dozens injured, a US official said. was familiar with the findings of the intelligence agency to The Associated. Press on Wednesday.

Russia has alleged that the Ukrainian military used US-supplied rocket launchers to attack the prison in Olenivka, a settlement controlled by the Moscow-backed Donetsk People’s Republic.

The Ukrainian army denied having carried out any rocket or artillery attacks in Olenivka. The intelligence division of Ukraine’s defense ministry said in a statement on Wednesday that it had evidence that local Kremlin-backed separatists colluded with the Russian FSB, the main successor to the KGB, and mercenary group Wagner to mine the barracks before “a flammable substance was discovered.” used, which led to the rapid spread of the fire in the room.”

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Russia could plant US ammunition: official

The US official, who was not authorized to comment publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity, said the classified intelligence — which was recently downgraded — shows Russian officials could even plant ammunition from medium-sized High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems, or HIMARS, as evidence that the systems provided to Ukraine by the US were used in the attack.

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Russia is expected to take action as it expects independent researchers and journalists to eventually gain access to Olenivka, the official added.

Ukraine has effectively used HIMARS launchers, which fire medium-range missiles and can be moved quickly before Russia can attack them with backfire, and has searched for more launchers from the United States.

Earlier Wednesday, United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said he was appointing a fact-finding mission in response to requests from Russia and Ukraine to investigate the killings in the prison.

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Guterres told reporters he does not have the authority to conduct criminal investigations, but he does have the authority to conduct fact-finding missions. He added that the terms of reference for a mission to Ukraine is currently being prepared and will be sent to the governments of Ukraine and Russia for approval.

The Ukrainian POWs in Donetsk Prison included troops captured during the fall of Mariupol. They spent months with civilians at the giant Azovstal steel plant in the southern port city. Their resistance during a relentless Russian bombardment became a symbol of Ukrainian resistance to Russian aggression.

In this photo from the July 29 video is a view of a ruined barracks in the prison in Olenivka. (The The Switzerland Times)

More than 2,400 soldiers of the Azov regiment of the Ukrainian National Guard and other military units gave up their fight and surrendered on orders from the Ukrainian army in May.

Countless Ukrainian soldiers have been taken to prisons in Russian-controlled areas. Some have returned to Ukraine as part of the prisoner exchange with Russia, but other families have no idea if their loved ones are still alive, or if they will ever come home.

UN wants access to Europe’s largest nuclear power plant

The head of the United Nations nuclear watchdog appealed for access to a Ukrainian nuclear power plant now controlled by Russian forces to determine if it was a source of danger.

Contact with Europe’s largest nuclear power plant, which is located in Zaporizhzhya and is operated by Ukrainian technicians, has been “fragile” and communication did not work every day, Rafael Grossi, head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), told Switzerland. newspaper Tages-Anzeiger.

“We cannot afford a lack of communication with the factory in areas that are relevant to security. We know of allegations that live ammunition has been stored in the factory, that there have been attacks on the power plant,” he said in a German statement. published interview.

“Frankly, if I don’t have access, I can’t determine that. There are inconsistencies between the accounts of the Russian and Ukrainian sides. I receive information, I also state it in my situation reports, but I have no way to determine whether it is corresponds to the facts.”

A Russian-installed official in Ukraine said on Wednesday that Ukrainian forces have repeatedly used Western weapons to attack the plant, which operates two of its six reactors and has been the subject of repeated warnings from Ukraine, the West and Russia.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken called Russia’s actions around the plant “the height of irresponsibility” and accused Moscow of using it as a “nuclear shield” in attacks on Ukrainian troops.

Reuters was unable to verify battlefield reports from either side of the war.

A Russian soldier guards an area of ​​the Zaporizhzhya nuclear power plant in the area under Russian military control, in southeastern Ukraine, on May 1. (The The Switzerland Times)

Grossi said UN talks with the parties to the conflict involved a proposed agreement on safety zones around nuclear power plants, but he saw no willingness to negotiate a deal at this stage.

Access to the factory was difficult, and overland travel through occupied territory would require special safety features, he said. Talks were underway with the Ukrainian government about arranging a visit.

The agency has at times reported that the connection to surveillance systems carrying nuclear materials on the
power plant.

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