Hello, dear readers!
On Tuesday, Azerbaijan began shelling Nagorno-Karabakh (in Baku’s terminology, “anti-terrorist measures using high-precision weapons”) with the aim of “restoring the constitutional order,” “neutralizing” military infrastructure and withdrawing “formations of the Armenian armed forces” from the territory of Azerbaijan. (The Nagorno-Karabakh Republic, proclaimed in 1991, is not recognized by any UN country, including Armenia; Azerbaijan considers it its territory). Almost immediately Stepanakert came under artillery fire. The fighting took place along the entire line of contact; the Azerbaijani army managed to break through it in several places. By evening, it was known that there were 27 dead (two of them civilians) and over 200 wounded (including 29 civilians). Nagorno-Karabakh has been under blockade since April; Russian peacekeepers stationed in the region, according to the Russian Foreign Ministry, “communicate” with both sides of the conflict.
The authorities of the unrecognized Nagorno-Karabakh invited Azerbaijan to stop hostilities and begin negotiations. Azerbaijan expressed its readiness to meet with “representatives of the population,” but did not promise to stop hostilities. Türkiye supported Baku. Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan made an appeal in which he called what was happening “an operation of ethnic cleansing of the Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh,” emphasized that there is no Armenian army on the territory of the unrecognized republic, and called not to jeopardize Armenian statehood. Almost simultaneously, a protest began in the center of Yerevan demanding Armenia’s intervention in the conflict (this, according to the prime minister, would jeopardize statehood) and Pashinyan’s resignation, which escalated into an assault on the government building and clashes with the police (there were casualties). At the same time, an action under the slogan “Russia is the enemy, Russia is the occupier” was held near the Russian Embassy in Yerevan.
Moscow expressed concern about the resumption of hostilities, the European Union condemned them, and US Secretary of State Antony Blinken is ready to act as a mediator in the negotiations. Here experts are trying to explain the reasons for the new exacerbation, but refuse to give any forecasts for the future.
On the fronts of Ukraine
On Wednesday night, Russia launched several batches of “Shaheds” across the northern border of Ukraine: after flying through the Sumy region, they headed to the southwest, the alarm was declared on half of the territory of Ukraine, including Kiev. The night before, Russia launched 30 kamikaze drones and an Iskander M cruise missile into Ukraine. “Shaheds”, 27 of which were shot down in different regions of the country, flew to Lvov – they flew there and hit a warehouse (one person was killed, two were wounded). The missile (or its fragments) caused a fire in a high-rise building in Krivoy Rog, and Shaheds shot down over the Nikolaev region damaged agricultural equipment. In the afternoon, the Russian army struck Kupyansk, Kharkov region, with a controlled aerial bomb: the bomb hit the crossing over Oskol, where at that moment volunteer vehicles were passing, transporting civilians, killing six people. In Kherson, a trolleybus came under Russian shelling: two were killed, one person was wounded. On Tuesday evening, the Russian Ministry of Defense reported the downing of a Ukrainian drone over the Belgorod region.
There is no news from the fronts. The American Institute for the Study of War writes that Russian troops in Bakhmut are exhausted, but the Ukrainian Armed Forces may not go further. British military intelligence talks about battles in the lower reaches of the Dnieper.
Denmark, Norway and Germany announced new military aid packages for Ukraine; The Czech Republic, the Netherlands and Denmark agreed to cooperate on further supplies of military equipment to Kyiv: the Czech Republic will produce and modernize, and Denmark and the Netherlands will pay for it.
The New York Times published an investigation claiming that the September 6 attack on Konstantinovka, which killed 16 people, was carried out by a Ukrainian missile fired from a Buk that for some reason veered off course. Journalists claim that Ukrainian authorities interfered with their work. Advisor to the head of the office of the President of Ukraine, Mikhail Podolyak, criticized the publication, and the SBU stated that, according to its investigation, the strike was caused by a Russian S-300 missile (previously, the Ukrainian authorities stated that no investigation would be carried out).
Meanwhile in Russia
Near-war. The anniversary of the announcement of “partial mobilization” is approaching. According to “Verstka” calculations, during this time 761 people challenged their sending to the front in court, but only 52 claims were satisfied. The Deputy Minister of Digital Development of Russia made it clear that the timing of the commissioning of the unified digital register of military records has been postponed indefinitely – accordingly, with the start of the autumn conscription on October 1, it will not work. The announcement of a new wave of mobilization is politically inconvenient for the authorities, but there are not enough people at the front, so they stopped providing leave to mobilized and contract soldiers, a lawyer talks about this here. A court in Moscow sentenced a mobilized man with a disability to five years probation for leaving his unit without permission (he was mobilized after a raid on the street). In Volgograd, the trial of a policeman who beat a 14-year-old boy was stopped because the policeman had gone to war. The mayor of Pechora (famous for calling Izvestia correspondents “prostitutes”) also volunteered there. “Discreditors.” In Kamchatka, a Russian language teacher accused of “discrediting” was detained during a lesson. According to estimates by the human rights organization “Crimean Process”, since the beginning of the war, 472 residents of Crimea have been accused of “discrediting” the Russian army. Extremist criminals. Three criminal cases were opened against the Kemerovo blogger for criticizing the authorities. The Moscow City Court declared “New Greatness” an extremist organization (eight people convicted in the “New Greatness” case insisted that the organization as such never existed). Media. Roskomnadzor plans to ban the publication in Russia of information about ways to bypass blocking from March 2024. “Important Stories” reported on the surveillance of two of its journalists living in Prague: threatening messages included their addresses and travel plans (in addition, the threatening people know about the dog of one of the journalists and about the breathing problems of this dog) – the editors believe that the Russian special services are behind this. All media in the so-called “DPR” will soon be united into one “media holding” (this is called “streamlining”). “Important Stories” journalist Maria Zholobova talks here about the streamlining of Russian military propaganda through the Dialogue ANO. Culture and education. The highest-grossing Yakut film “Aita” was removed from streaming services because Roskomnadzor considered it to be contrary to the “principles of the unity of the peoples of Russia.” The article “How many books did F. Skaryna publish in Prague”, which contained the acrostic “Die, Putler. No to war” (the paper version of the magazine has already been distributed to libraries). Those wishing to familiarize themselves with a new portion of educational videos on the university course “Fundamentals of Russian Statehood” – here (fun fact: each new version of the Constitution of the Russian Federation and the USSR makes it “only more socially oriented” – for example, in the Stalinist Constitution of 1936 general elections appeared, as well as principle, God forgive me, of freedom of religion).
Around the world
The session of the UN General Assembly opened in New York. Biden called on the whole world to unite to protect Ukraine, Zelensky invited all countries to participate in the Ukrainian peace formula and said that Russia should not have nuclear weapons. Sanctions violations. The United States accused a Russian living in Hong Kong of purchasing military microelectronics for Russia, and he was arrested. According to The Insider, Latvian companies, bypassing sanctions, supply the Russian military-industrial complex with microcircuits that are used in the production of Iskanders. Kyiv called on Berlin to block the shipment to Russia of several German-made machine tools that are located in a Turkish port and will most likely be used for the production of shells. Reuters writes, citing Russian customs data, that Turkey has become the largest buyer of coal from the annexed territories of Ukraine. Iran. The United States has imposed sanctions against three Russian companies suspected of helping Iran produce military drones. Against this background, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu arrived on a visit to Tehran. Belorussian. Latvia has closed one of the two crossings on the border with Belarus. The trial of a member of the Belarusian “death squad” involved in the abduction and murder of oppositionists in 1999 has begun in Switzerland. India. Canada has announced the possible involvement of Indian authorities in the murder of a Sikh separatist leader in British Columbia in June of this year. India denies everything.
Conversations with writers. A conversation between Alexander Arkhangelsky and Maxim Osipov, a writer and doctor who became famous in the mid-2000s for his essays from Tarusa (he now publishes a literary magazine abroad). Or an interview with the poet, publisher, critic and translator Dmitry Kuzmin, who has been living in Latvia since 2014: about the war, Russian culture and family values (he is openly gay). Soviet repressions. A conversation with the editor and ideologist of the “Immortal Barracks” project Andrei Shalaev about how unrecognized repressions are dragging Russia into the past. Or a story about the persecution of homosexuals in the USSR – on the 90th anniversary of their beginning. Flora and fauna. Excerpt from the book “Life in the Boundary Layer” by Robin Wall Kimmerer. Natural and cultural history of mosses” (Ad Marginem publishing house) – about how moss is used in the traditional way of life. Or a fragment from the book by paleontologist Dean Lomax “Secrets of the Prehistoric World: Amazing Stories from the Life of Extinct Animals” (CoLibri Publishing House) – about a mammal that hunted dinosaurs.