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Saturday, February 4. Russia’s War On Ukraine: Daily News And Information From Ukraine

Forbes 2/4/2023 Katya Soldak, Forbes Staff

Dispatches from Ukraine. Day 346.

As Russia’s attack on Ukraine continues and the war rages on, reliable sources of information are critical. Forbes gathers information and provides updates on the situation.


Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal says a “technological accident” of unspecified nature occurred at a regional Odesa high voltage substation today following repeated attacks by Russian forces. Much of the city of Odesa and its environs are now undergoing emergency blackouts. Damage was so severe, particularly to critical infrastructure, that speedy restoration of power is impossible even with round-the-clock repair efforts. Shymhal has ordered the Ministry of Energy to deliver all available high-output generators to Odesa within 24 hours.

Russia released 116 Ukrainian soldiers, including Mariupol defenders, Kherson partisans and Bakhmut snipers, in the latest prisoner-of-war exchange today, says Andrii Yermak, Chief of Staff of the Office of the President. The exchange also included the bodies of Christopher Parry and Andrew Bagshaw, foreign volunteers killed in Donbas early in January, and Evheniy Kulyk, a Ukrainian serving in the French Foreign Legion who returned to fight the Russians. “Work never stops. We will bring everyone back,” Yermak added.


The Council of Europe agreed today to set two price caps for Russian petroleum products, press services report. The first price cap sets a price of $45 per barrel for petroleum products traded at a discount to crude oil while the second fixes a price of $100 per barrel for such products traded at a premium to crude. Established in close cooperation with the Price Cap Coalition, these levels will take effect tomorrow. The EU stated that it adopted these measures as part of its resolute support for Ukraine's independence and its right of self-defense against Russian aggression.

On February 2, the U.S. Department of Defense announced a new security aid package to Ukraine worth $2.175 billion. It will include air defense systems, armored infantry vehicles and other military equipment proven to be effective on the Ukraine battlefield. In particular, the U.S will supply ammunition for High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS), 155 mm artillery rounds and 120 mm mortar rounds, 250 Javelin anti-armor systems, 181 Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) Vehicles, demolition munitions, two HAWK air defense firing units, anti-aircraft guns and ammunition, 20 counter-mortar radars, equipment for integrating Western air defense launchers, missiles and radars into Ukraine’s air defense systems and other equipment for maintaining Ukraine’s existing air defense capabilities.

According to CNN, U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland has approved the first-ever transfer of seized Russian assets to Ukraine. These assets represent $5.4 million forfeited due to sanctions imposed on Russian oligarch Konstantin Malofeyev for directly or indirectly ‘having acted or purported to act for or on behalf of’ the Russian government. “The forfeited funds will next be transferred to the State Department to support the people of Ukraine,” Garland stated. “Russian war criminals will find no refuge in the United States.”

American volunteer and former Marine Pete Reed, 33, was killed in the eastern Ukrainian city of Bakhmut while aiding civilians on February 2. Global Response Medicine, for which he served four years as Board President, announced his death. “This is a stark reminder of the perils rescue and aid workers face in conflict zones as they serve citizens caught in the crossfire,” the organization's message says.

An oil depot in Russia's Belgorod region caught on fire yesterday. Local authorities blame the fire on shelling by Ukrainian forces. Russian media channels describe the fire spreading later to the Borysiv bridge steel construction plant nearby. No casualties have been reported so far.

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