Russia orders its troops to withdraw from the west bank of the Dnipro River near the strategic southern Ukrainian city of Kherson, a potential turning point in conflict – now in its 260th day.

Ukrainian Armed Forces' military mobility continue toward Kherson front in Ukraine as Russia-Ukraine conflict continues.
Ukrainian Armed Forces' military mobility continue toward Kherson front in Ukraine as Russia-Ukraine conflict continues. (AA)

Thursday, November 10, 2022

Moscow starts Kherson pullout

Moscow has begun retreating from Ukraine's southern city of Kherson as Kiev said it had recaptured a dozen villages in the strategic Black Sea region.

"The Russian troop units are manoeuvring to prepared position on the left bank of the Dnipro river in strict accordance with the approved plan," the Russian defence ministry said.

Ukrainian officials have remained wary since Moscow first signalled late Wednesday that it was pulling forces from the west bank of the Dnipro river in Kherson, in what would be major Russian setback in a region Vladimir Putin claimed to have annexed.

Ukraine retakes 12 villages in Kherson

Ukraine said its forces had reclaimed a dozen towns and villages in the southern Kherson region after Russian forces announced they were pulling back troops from the strategic territory. 

Ukrainian Commander-in-Chief Valeriy Zaluzhny said that in the last day Kiev's forces had recaptured six settlements after fighting near the Petropavlivka-Novoraisk front.

He added that another six were taken in the Pervomaiske-Kherson direction and that his forces had captured more than 200 square kilometres from Russian forces in total in that time. 

Russian retreat from Kherson would be another Ukraine victory: NATO chief

NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg said he was waiting to see how Russia's withdrawal from Kherson played out, but if confirmed, it would be "another victory for Ukraine". 

"We have to see how the situation on the ground develops in the coming days. But what is clear is that Russia is under heavy pressure and if they leave Kherson, it would be another victory for Ukraine," he said after talks with Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni in Rome.

Over 100,000 Russian soldiers killed, wounded in Ukraine war: Top US general 

Russia has suffered more than 100,000 killed and wounded soldiers as a result of the offensive in Ukraine, the top US general said.

Speaking at an event at The Economic Club of New York, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Alexander Milley discussed geopolitical tensions and what is on the horizon.

"You’re looking at well over 100,000 Russian soldiers killed and wounded," CNN quoted Milley as saying.

"Same thing probably on the Ukrainian side,” he added. 

Norway contributes $144 mln to UK-led fund for Ukraine

The Norwegian government said it was preparing to contribute approximately 1.5 billion Norwegian crowns ($144.30 million) to the British-led International Fund for Ukraine. 

Ukraine cautious as Russia orders troops out of Kherson

Kiev has reacted sceptically to Moscow announcing its retreat from the southern city of Kherson, urging continued resistance against the Russian incursion.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy refrained from overblowing the significance of Moscow's evacuation from Kherson, even as US President Joe Biden suggested it was evidence that eight months into the war, Russia has "real problems" on the battlefield.

Zelenskyy has suggested that rather than experiencing a major setback, Russia could be strategically feigning.

Mazda pulls out of Russia joint venture

Japanese carmaker Mazda said it is pulling out of its joint venture in Russia because of the war in Ukraine, having ceased operations in the country earlier this year.

Mazda stopped shipping parts to Russia in March and ended operations the following month "due to the situation in Ukraine that arose in February 2022", it said in a statement.

The company said it signed an agreement last month to transfer all of its equity interest in the Russian business to its joint venture partner Sollers.

Ukraine boosts Southeast Asia ties with peace accord

Ukraine signed a peace accord with Southeast Asian nations, a largely symbolic act that comes as Kiev seeks to shore up international support in isolating Russia.

Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba signed the “Treaty on Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia” as the annual summit of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations got underway in Phnom Penh.

The ASEAN summit comes as Russia seeks new markets for its energy products to avoid Western sanctions following its incursion into Ukraine.

Britain freezes $20.5B worth of Russian assets

The British government said that it had frozen assets together worth $20.5 billion (18 billion pounds) held by Russian oligarchs, other individuals and entities sanctioned for Moscow's offensive in Ukraine.

"We have imposed the most severe sanctions ever on Russia and it is crippling their war machine," Andrew Griffith, a junior government minister in the Treasury said. 

Russia has passed Libya and Iran to become Britain's most-sanctioned nation, according to the Office of Financial Sanctions Implementation, part of the finance ministry.

Top US general: Military casualties almost same for Russia, Ukraine

America's top general has estimated that Russia's military had suffered more than 100,000 soldiers killed and wounded in Ukraine, and added Kiev's armed forces "probably" suffered a similar level of casualties in the conflict.

"You're looking at well over 100,000 Russian soldiers killed and wounded. Same thing probably on the Ukrainian side. A lot of human suffering," Army General Mark Milley told the Economic Club of New York.

He added 40,000 Ukrainian civilians were also probably killed in the conflict since Russia began its attacks in February.

Biden expects Ukraine aid to continue uninterrupted

US President Joe Biden has said Russia's order to evacuate troops from the west bank of the Dnipro River near the Ukrainian city of Kherson showed Moscow was having "real problems" with its military.

Biden told reporters it was interesting that Russia had waited until after the US congressional election to announce the withdrawal. "It's evidence of the fact that they have some real problems with the Russian military," he said.

He said the withdrawal would allow both sides to recalibrate their positions over the winter, but it remained to be seen whether Ukraine was prepared to compromise with Russia. 

Biden said he expects US aid to Ukraine to continue without interruption despite skepticism expressed by Republicans who appear poised to take control of the House of Representatives.

For live updates from Wednesday (November 9), click here

Source: TRTWorld and agencies