Good morning from Kyiv, which is currently being targeted by yet another missile attack from Russia.
Air raid sirens in the capital and across the rest of the country sounded at 7:45am and reports suggest that explosions are due to the work of Ukrainian air defenses, rather than rockets hitting their targets.
It comes after a sleepless night for many in the capital after Russia launched a wave of kamikaze drones in the early hours of the morning. Ukrainian air defenses shot down all 24 of them.
You can read the latest on the ongoing attack here.
What’s happening today?
Well, currently life is temporarily on hold for many in Kyiv right now as they sit out the missile attack in shelters and the city’s metro stations.
Elsewhere, controversy is brewing after tennis star Novak Djokovic’s father was filmed posing with fans brandishing pro-Russian flags at the Australian Open.
Srdjan Djokovic appeared in videos posted shortly after his son’s quarter-final victory, in which he reportedly said: “Long live Russia.”
You can read more about that story here.
What was in President Zelensky’s latest message?
President Zelensky hailed what he described as a “day of extremely good news for Ukraine” during which Germany finally gave the go-ahead for the delivery of Leopard 2 heavy tanks and the U.S. announced it would send 31 M1 Abrams.
Although grateful for the decisions, Zelensky stressed this is just the first step and much more needs to be done before the heavy tanks can get to the frontlines where they are needed.
“The key thing now is speed and volume,” he said. “The speed of training of our military, the speed of supplying tanks to Ukraine. The volume of tank support.
“We must form a tank fist, a fist of freedom whose hits will not let tyranny stand up again.”
What’s the latest military situation?
The British Ministry of Defense (MoD) update on Jan. 26 focuses on the Russian 2nd Guards Motor Rifle Division (GMRD) which has been undergoing training in Belarus since the autumn of last year.
The MoD notes that previously the GMRD was an elite unit but suffered “major losses in the opening phases of the conflict.”
It adds: “It is now primarily made up of mobilized personnel operating older equipment taken from storage. Its combat effectiveness will likely be limited despite several weeks of training. There is a realistic possibility that other Russian units are being rotated into Belarus for similar training, and that Russia will continue this model to regenerate and prepare units to maintain its force in Ukraine.”
The Institute for the Study of War’s Jan. 25 daily assessment covers a multitude of topics, most notably:
· Russian forces may be engaging in limited spoiling attacks across most of the frontline in Ukraine in order to disperse and distract Ukrainian fronts and launch a decisive offensive operation in Luhansk Oblast;
· The Russian military appears to be shifting its focus towards conventional forces and away from the non-traditional force structure of the Wagner Group, potentially in preparation for a decisive effort in Luhansk Oblast;
· The Kremlin and Russian milbloggers attempted to downplay the Western provision of tanks to Ukraine, indicating that they likely find these systems threatening to Russian prospects.
And that’s it for today’s Morning Memo.
Kyiv Post will bring you the latest news throughout the day and we’ll be back with another edition tomorrow.
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