Overview:

  • US Government budget crunch puts Ukraine aid in jeopardy
  • EU top diplomat in Kyiv “surprised” by Congress’ decision
  • More Russian bombs rain down on Kherson region
  • Trenches and tunnels near Robotyne keep changing hands
  • Moscow and local leaders confused as to what they control in Ukraine
  • Shahed drones are becoming more difficult to detect, Air Force says
  • VIDEO: Watch Ukrainian drone wipe out Russian unit

US government financial stalemate threatens Ukrainian aid

A story by AFP warned on Sunday that “the future of US aid for Ukraine hangs in the balance after a last-gasp deal to avoid a government shutdown, despite President Joe Biden’s attempts to reassure Kyiv it will get what it needs to fight Russia.”

President Volodymyr Zelensky was in Washington and New York just a week ago appealing for US funds, but a compromise struck in US Congress late Sunday cut upcoming funding for Ukraine due to lobbying by right-wing conservatives looking for a crease to exploit in the upcoming presidential elections.

The US House of Representatives has been debating next year’s government budget at the 11th hour, with a faction of the Republican Congressional members threatening to cease all government spending in coming weeks, and aid to Ukraine was among the first line items to be cut back before that happened.

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Biden urged Republican House Speaker Kevin McCarthy on Sunday to “stop the games” and said he “fully expects” him to secure passage of a separate bill for Ukraine funding soon, AFP reported. “I want to assure our American allies, the American people and the people in Ukraine that you can count on our support. We will not walk away,” Biden said in an address from the White House.

“The Ukrainian government is now actively working with its American partners to ensure that the new US budget decision, which will be developed over the next 45 days, includes new funds to help Ukraine,” Ukrainian Foreign Ministry spokesman Oleg Nikolenko was quoted by AFP as saying.

British Defence Intelligence Update Ukraine 24 July 2024
Other Topics of Interest

British Defence Intelligence Update Ukraine 24 July 2024

Latest from the British Defence Intelligence.

EU urges US Congress to reconsider Ukrainian aid roadblock

The AP reported that the European Union’s foreign policy chief called on U.S. lawmakers Sunday to “reconsider their decision to omit financial support for Ukraine from a stop-gap budget bill Congress passed to halt a federal government shutdown.”

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The Spanish politician and High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Josep Borrell, met with Zelensky in Kyiv this weekend and said European officials were “surprised” by the last-minute agreement in Washington to not include Ukraine aid in its continuing resolution and pledged that the EU would carry on helping with the counteroffensive.

“I have hope that this will not be a definitive decision and Ukraine will continue having the support of the US,” AP quoted Borrell as saying.

Conflicting maps and claims of occupation cause confusion among Russian leadership

According to analysts from the Institute for the Study of War (ISW), the Kremlin has “seemingly not yet clarified what Ukrainian territories it claims Russia has annexed,” leading to continued confusion among officials a year after the annexation of such occupied territories as Crimea and the regions of Donetsk and Luhansk.

On Saturday, ISW wrote,Russian President Vladimir Putin gave a speech in honor of the so-called ‘Day of Reunification of the Donetsk People’s Republic, Luhansk People’s Republic, Zaporizhzhia, and Kherson Oblasts with Russia’ in which he reiterated boilerplate rhetoric about the international legitimacy of the illegal Russian annexation referenda, the West’s alleged role in starting the war in Ukraine, and the unity between Russia and occupied Ukraine.”

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In lock step, Sevastopol occupation governor Mikhail Razvozhaev posted a map on his Telegram channel in honor of the holiday that showed the entirety of Crimea and Luhansk, Donetsk, Zaporizhzhia, and Kherson oblasts as Russian territory.

By contrast, the Kherson Regional occupation administration “posted a different map that showed Russian territory roughly extending to the current frontlines in the four most recently annexed territories,” the ISW reported, causing some conflicting messaging. The frontlines have changed dramatically in the Kherson region over the past couple of weeks.

Meanwhile, Russia’s former president and loose-cannon spokesperson Dmitry Medvedev “ambiguously claimed that the war in Ukraine will continue until ‘the original Russian territories are liberated,’” the ISW wrote.

Medvedev’s unclear statement and occupation officials’ disparate maps indicate that the Kremlin has yet to clarify what territories it claims to have annexed or intends to annex,” the analysts wrote over the weekend.

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Dragons’ teeth south of Robotyne rapidly changing hands, but AFU regains upper hand Sunday

The ISW relayed on Sunday that geolocated footage posted over the weekend shows Ukrainian forces striking Russian troops trying to enter a dragons’ teeth trench system about 1 km southwest of Robotyne near the T0408 Robotyne-Tokmak road.

However, similar footage posted on Sept. 13 shows that Ukrainian forces had already liberated segments of this jagged defensive line and thus appear to have lost it to Russian counterattacks in the previous weeks. ISW analysts reported that a Ukrainian soldier analyzed the footage of the area and “noted that the aforementioned Russian-controlled trench is a strongpoint in an interconnected system of trenches that lie between Robotyne and Novoprokopivka.”

He said that the trenches are “connected by underground tunnel-like structures and that Russian forces are prioritizing the defense of these positions, which have tactical significance in the area between Robotyne and Novoprokopivka.”

Meanwhile, footage posted on Oct. 1 shows Russian forces striking a Ukrainian vehicle just south of the middle of the three trenches and about 1 km west of the easternmost trench in the system, suggesting that Ukrainian forces control the easternmost trench and are attempting to push westward to recapture the remaining two trenches and connected dugouts and firing positions.

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Kherson region once again under aerial attack

The spokesperson for the Ukrainian Southern Operational Command, Captain Natalia Humenyuk posted on Sunday that Russian forces launched 16 guided aerial bombs at Kherson region and targeted residential and agricultural infrastructure, the ISW reported.

The region’s administration specified that they were two guided aerial bombs which struck a residential quarter in the Beryslav area on Sunday afternoon.

AFU says it shot down half of Russian drones aimed at Ukraine

According to Ukrainian Air Force Spokesperson Colonel Yuriy Ihnat, “unspecified actors, likely Russian authorities and their allies, are working to make Shahed drones and other Russian weapons more resistant to electronic warfare and more difficult to down.”

That said, the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU) reported on Sunday that it had shot down 16 of 30 of Shahed drones headed toward Ukraine over the weekend.

As noted by an ISW report, a Russian military blogger said that Ihnat is likely referring to “small noise-resistant Comet satellite signal receivers that Russian drone producers have begun installing on domestically produced Shahed drones.”

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Video allegedly shows Ukrainian drone destroy Russian position

A French-Ukrainian blogger posted a video Sunday purporting to show a Ukrainian bomb-carrying drone blowing up a Russian position and the fleeing soldiers. The footage has not been independently verified by the Kyiv Post.

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