These are the main developments in the war as it enters its 707th day:
– Multiple casualties and injuries reported in Ukraine as a result of Russian shelling and drone attacks. Ukraine’s Air Force reported multiple attacks on energy and military infrastructure, with some drones successfully destroyed.
– Russia claimed to have brought down drones launched by Ukraine over Crimea, while Ukraine reported hitting a Russian air defense radar station on the peninsula. Both sides have engaged in a series of attacks and counterattacks.
– The head of Ukraine’s military intelligence agency, Kyrylo Budanov, expects Russia’s offensive on the eastern front to fizzle out by early spring, while Russia continues to intensify attacks in the region.
– Ukraine’s government submitted an amended version of its military mobilization bill to parliament, aiming to lower the age of conscription and allow certain convicted individuals to serve in the armed forces.
– Ukraine said it temporarily disrupted communications for military units in a cyberattack targeting Russia’s Defence Ministry.
Politics and diplomacy:
– CIA director Bill Burns warned of a tough year for Ukraine in 2024 if the US cuts off aid, and criticized Republicans in Congress for linking assistance to changes in US border policies.
– Russian opposition politician Vladimir Kara-Murza wrote of being in solitary confinement after a move to a new Siberian penal colony, which he interpreted as punishment for refusing to stand up for a guard. He was jailed for 25 years last April after being found guilty of treason.
– Russian investigators charged two 17-year-olds with sabotage for Ukraine after they set fire to a rail-side equipment box in Moscow, potentially facing 20 years in prison if found guilty.
– Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu announced a significant increase in the production of air defense missiles, but acknowledged concerns over engine and launcher production.
– Ukraine is expected to receive its first batch of the Ground-Launched Small Diameter Bomb (GLSDB) from Boeing, providing a long-range precision bomb to enhance Ukraine’s strike capabilities.