Catch up quickly on the Central and Eastern European stories that matter.
Russia’s war against Ukraine
Russia is moving towards a new stage of static fighting and attrition, a phase that could allow Moscow to rebuild its military power, Ukraine’s commander-in-chief warned this week.
The warning comes amid reports that North Korea has supplied Russia with two months’ worth of artillery shells.
In a article in the Economist published on Wednesday, General Valerii Zaluzhnyi said his army needed new military capabilities and key technological innovations to emerge from the new phase of the war, now in its 21st month.
Using harsh language, he described the risks of prolonged battles of attrition: “This will benefit Russia, allowing it to rebuild its military power, ultimately threatening the Ukrainian armed forces and the state itself. »
His article comes nearly five months after a major Ukrainian counteroffensive that failed to achieve a serious breakthrough against heavily mined Russian defensive lines. Fighting is expected to slow as weather conditions deteriorate.
“Just like in World War I, we have reached a technological level that puts us in a bind,” Zaluzhnyi added.
Russia bombed 118 Ukrainian cities and villages in 24 hours on Tuesday and Wednesday, more than on any other day of the year, according to Ukrainian Interior Minister Ihor Klymenko.
He said 10 of Ukraine’s 27 regions had been attacked and the assault had caused deaths and injuries. Many of the affected communities were near the front lines in the east and south.
Russia has for weeks focused much of its military firepower on Avdiivka, a strategically important town in the eastern Donetsk region.
“(Avdiivka) is erased, broken. Over the past few days, there have been more than 40 massive bombings against the territorial community,” said local leader Vitaliy Barabash.
He said two civilians had been killed and warned that Russia was preparing a third wave of offensive. Ukraine says Russia has sent reinforcements to the region in a bid to surround and capture the city.
Twenty attacks in the Avdiivka region alone were repelled on Tuesday, the General Staff of the Ukrainian Armed Forces announced.
The Italian Prime Minister, Giorgia Meloni, said According to a prankster posing as an African leader, there was “a lot of fatigue” from the war in Ukraine and that she had some ideas in store to “find a way out.”
Meloni’s office confirmed this week that she had been “misled” into the phone call – apparently from two Russian comedians – which took place on September 18, “by an impostor who posed as the Chairperson of the African Union Commission.
According to the Italian press, the callers were two Russian comedians, Vladimir Kuznetsov and Alexei Stolyarov, known jointly as Vovan and Lexus, one of whom introduced himself to Meloni as “an African politician.”
Strongly pro-Russian Vovan and Lexus have been accused of having ties to Russian intelligence services, although there is no evidence to support this allegation.
Dukovany nuclear power plant, Czechia
Other news from the region
Three energy companies, including the American Westinghouse, the French EdF and the Korean KHNP, have have submitted their final offers build Czechia the new reactor at the Dukovany nuclear power plant, as the country strives to become more energy independent and wean itself off fossil fuels. State-controlled power company ČEZ said on Tuesday it would evaluate bids for the multibillion-dollar contract before forwarding its decision to the government for final approval of the winner.
After weeks of negotiations, Montenegro Parliament Tuesday appointed a new government, a coalition of pro-European and pro-Serb parties expected to lead the small Balkan country in its bid to join the European Union. The new government, led by economist Milojko Spajić of the Europe Now movement, will have 19 ministries and five deputy prime ministers. It will include the center-right pro-European Democrats, the pro-Serb Socialist People’s Party and five Albanian minority parties.
Serbia hold early elections next month, after President Aleksandar Vučić this week dissolved parliament in the face of domestic and European Union political pressure. The parliamentary vote and parallel local elections will take place on December 17, less than two years after the Serbian Progressive Party’s electoral victory. Vučić, who is in his second presidential term, faces growing criticism from the political opposition and the general public following back-to-back shootings in May that killed 18 people.
The European Union plans to help Western Balkan countries pursue reforms needed for their integration with the wealth-rich bloc. an investment of six billion eurosEuropean Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said in Skopje on Monday. North Macedonia, Albania, Kosovo, Serbia, Montenegro And Bosnia Herzegovina All must seize the “window of opportunity” of EU enlargement and strive to align their standards with those of the bloc, von der Leyen said.
Moldova the president, Maia Sandu, accused Russia on Wednesday of having “bought” voters in local elections this weekend by funneling money to pro-Moscow political parties. Sandu, who denounced Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and accused Russia of trying to overthrow her in a coup, said Moscow had funneled the equivalent of nearly five million U.S. dollars in two months to finance “criminal groups”. These include a banned party led by fugitive businessman Ilan Shor.
Belgian-Dutch retailer Ahold Delhaize this week agreed buy Romanian grocery chain Profi to private equity firm MidEuropa for 1.3 billion euros in a deal that will more than double the company’s operations in Romania. The acquisition of Romania’s largest food retailer in terms of number of stores will expand Ahold’s reach to more rural parts of the country, as its existing Mega Image supermarket chain of 969 stores is mainly present in urban areas.
Persons under 18 years of age are not permitted to access visit this year’s World Press Photo exhibition in Budapest, after Hungary The right-wing populist government determined that some of his photos violated a controversial law restricting LGBT content. A series of five photos taken by a Filipino photojournalist led a far-right Hungarian lawmaker to file a complaint with the country’s culture ministry, which said they violated a Hungarian law banning the display of LGBT content on minors.
Warsaw Medical University (WUM) this week suspended a Norwegian student who was photographed during a recent pro-Palestinian march in the Polish capital brandishing a banner depicting the Israeli flag thrown into a trash can next to the words “Keep the world clean.” “There is no place for any form of hate speech or violence at the Medical University of Warsaw,” wrote its rector, Zbigniew Gaciong, in a statement published on the Onet news site.
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