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U.S. Calls out Russia for 'Dirty Bomb' Claim; Over a Million Ukrainian Homes Lose Power

Washington and Kyiv have both slammed allegations by Moscow that Ukraine is planning to use a “dirty bomb” on its own territory. They have both called these allegations “transparently false” and a “pretext for escalation.”

October 24, 2022
13 minutes
minute read

Washington and Kyiv have both slammed allegations by Moscow that Ukraine is planning to use a “dirty bomb” on its own territory. They have both called these allegations “transparently false” and a “pretext for escalation.”

Ukrainian forces are continuing to make progress in their advance on Kherson, which was illegally annexed by Moscow last month. Russian authorities in the area say that 25,000 residents have been evacuated since Tuesday. This is a significant development, and it shows that the Ukrainian forces are continuing to make progress in their efforts to retake the city.

More than 1 million households in Ukraine are without electricity as Russia continues to attack critical energy infrastructure around the country. This has caused widespread disruption and hardship for many people.

The Ukrainian Foreign Minister has asked the International Atomic Energy Agency to send a team of experts to inspect the country's nuclear facilities. This is in response to Russia's allegation that Ukraine has a "dirty bomb" that it plans to use on its own territory. Minister Kuleba has stated that he wants to disprove this claim and ensure that Ukraine's nuclear facilities are safe.

Grossi, the head of the IAEA, has agreed to Kuleba's request to send experts to peaceful facilities in Ukraine, the minister wrote on Twitter.

Kuleba stated that Ukraine has always been and remains transparent, in contrast to Russia. He also mentioned that he had spoken to EU foreign policy chief Josep

Borrell, who welcomed Ukraine's decision to invite IAEA experts.

Russia has been using Iranian-made Shahed-136 drones to target critical infrastructure and civilian areas in Ukraine, according to the UK’s Ministry of Defence. However, the ministry added that Ukrainian forces are becoming more effective at using anti-drone technology.

Russia is still using Iranian-made drones to attack targets in Ukraine, according to the Ukrainian Defense Ministry.The ministry said in a Twitter post that Ukrainian forces are becoming more successful in downing the Shahed-136 UAVs.It is not clear how many of the drones have been used in attacks or how many have been shot down.

President Zelenskyy of Ukraine and other officials have claimed that up to 85% of attacks are being intercepted. The ministry wrote that these UAVs are slow, noisy, and fly at low altitudes, making them easy to target using conventional air defences.

According to a recent report, Russia is said to be using drones as a replacement for its precision-guided long-range missiles. The report claims that the missiles are becoming increasingly scarce, which is why the drones are being used as an alternative. This is a concerning development, as it could mean that Russia is beefing up its military capabilities.

President Zelenskyy of Ukraine has accused Russia of being the only country that would deploy nuclear weapons in Europe. He has also condemned Russia's destruction of Ukrainian infrastructure over the past eight months.

In response to the Kremlin's claim that Ukraine is preparing to use a 'dirty bomb' on its own territory, he said that there is no evidence to support this claim. A dirty bomb is a device that uses nuclear fission to contaminate a large area with radioactivity, without using an explosion.

President Zelenskyy has accused Russia of using "nuclear blackmail" at Ukraine's Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant, which has been under Russian occupation since March. He also accused Russia of using phosphorus munitions and other banned weapons against civilian infrastructure. He said that if Russia was accusing Ukraine of having a weapon, it must mean that Russia was preparing to deploy the same weapon.

Nigel Gould-Davies, a senior fellow for Russia and Eurasia at the International Institute for Strategic Studies, has stated that Ukraine has neither the ability nor the need to use a dirty bomb. He made this claim in a series of tweets.

Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu's recent phone calls with his counterparts in the United States, United Kingdom, France, and Turkey, in which he claimed that Ukraine is planning to use a "dirty bomb," are worrying.We have not seen this level of intense military diplomacy since the war began. And the substance of Shoigu's claims is even more worrying.As a former UK ambassador to Belarus, I am concerned about the implications of these developments.

"It's Russia that's losing, not Ukraine, in the dirty bomb stakes. Nobody will believe Shoigu anyway – especially UK Defense Minister Ben Wallace, who was lied to during his pre-invasion visit to Moscow."

Shoigu warned of potential "uncontrolled escalation" in the region. He said that it is Russia that is escalating the situation, and that it is difficult to see these calls as anything other than Shoigu either doubling down on Putin's bluffs, or preparing the way for Russian nuclear use.Gould-Davies said that a "dirty bomb" would breach the nuclear taboo, but would not have significant effects.

Officials from the United States and Ukraine have dismissed claims by the Russian government that Ukraine is planning to use a so-called "dirty bomb."Both American and Ukrainian officials have described the Russian allegations as "transparently false."

Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu has raised concerns about the possibility of Ukraine using a "dirty bomb" in a series of high-level calls with Western defense officials.According to Russia's defense ministry, Shoigu expressed "concerns about possible provocations by Ukraine with the use of a 'dirty bomb.'"

A dirty bomb is a type of weapon that is designed to contaminate a large area with radioactivity, making it harmful or uninhabitable for residents there. Unlike a nuclear bomb, a dirty bomb does not use a nuclear explosion to create its effects.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken has told Ukrainian counterpart Dmytro Kuleba that the United States rejects Russian Defense Minister Shoygu's allegations that Ukraine is preparing to use a dirty bomb on its own territory.In a statement, the White House said that Blinken made it clear to Kuleba that any attempt by Russia to use this allegation as a pretext for escalation would be seen through by the international community.

President Volodymyr Zelenskyy of Ukraine has also denounced the Russian accusation.

Zelenskyy said in his nightly address that if Russia calls and says that Ukraine is allegedly preparing something, it means that Russia has already prepared everything.

French President Emmanuel Macron has said that the terms of peace with Moscow must be decided by Ukraine, stressing that the war’s end “can’t be the consecration of the law of the strongest.”Macron made the comments during a meeting with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy in Paris.During the meeting, the two leaders discussed the ongoing conflict in eastern Ukraine, which has been ongoing since 2014.Macron stressed the importance of a political solution to the conflict, and said that France would continue to support Ukraine in its efforts to find a peaceful resolution.

Macron spoke out against accepting the status quo of a world dominated by the strongest powers, during a conference in Rome Sunday. He called for a more just and equitable international order.

Macron said that the international community would be receptive when Ukraine’s government decides on the appropriate time to move forward.

Ukrainian forces are making progress in retaking territory occupied by Russia. While Moscow appears to be on the defensive, it still has the ability to cause destruction in Ukrainian cities and infrastructure. Analysts are concerned that Russia could use more extreme measures in retaliation, such as nuclear weapons.

Russian strikes on Ukraine's critical energy infrastructure have left more than 1 million homes without power, deputy head of the Ukrainian presidency Kyrylo Tymoshenko said over the weekend. Cities and towns all over Ukraine have faced power outages this month due to Russian attacks, prompting fear about what could be in store for the coming winter.

President Zelenskyy of Ukraine has urged his countrymen to be mindful of their power consumption. He has cautioned them that using too much power can lead to negative consequences.

We need to be more mindful about how we use electricity. Please try to limit your use of energy-hungry appliances when you can. It's important to be frugal with energy consumption in public spaces, so let's all do our part.

Adan Harris
Managing Editor
Eric Ng
John Liu
Editorial Board
Bryan Curtis
Adan Harris
Managing Editor
Cathy Hills
Associate Editor

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