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Ukrainian forces attack key Russian supply route into occupied Kherson; Gazprom cuts Nord Stream 1 gas flows


A hotel has been shelled in the Donetsk town of Bakhmut, leaving one person dead and others injured.

The two-storey building was partially destroyed in the strike which took place at 7am local time this morning, Donetsk’s emergency services said on Facebook.

“At 9:25 am during search and rescue operations, a rescuer rescued a man from the rubble, who was hospitalized in a medical facility. In general, since the beginning of the works, the body of 1 dead person was found at the scene, and 4 people were injured. Acoustic contact is maintained separately with one injured person, the body of the other dead person is visible. Work on the demolition of debris continues.”

Earlier on Wednesday, the head of Donetsk’s regional military administration Pavlo Kyrylenko said in an operational update that Russian forces had targeted a hotel and that there were dead and wounded, and a rescue operation was underway. CNBC was unable to immediately verify the reports.

Bakhmut is a key target for Russian forces trying to advance into Donetsk, a part of the Donbas in eastern Ukraine. The nearby cities of Kramatorsk and Sloviansk and surrounding villages have also come under heavy fire.

— Holly Ellyatt

Ukraine confirmed it attacked the Antonivka Road Bridge, also known as Antonovsky Bridge, which is a key supply route for Russian forces in the occupied city of Kherson.

The strikes on the bridge, reported overnight, were confirmed by Natalia Humeniuk, a spokesperson for the southern command of Ukraine’s Armed Forces on Wednesday, who said it was vital for Ukraine to regain control of transport routes seized by Russia.

“This doesn’t allow them to maneuver or bring in more personnel or ammunition,” she said, according to a translation by NBC, and she hinted that the strikes to the bridge were not aimed at destroying it completely but making it unusable.

“I also want to stress that we value all of our infrastructure even when it’s under occupation. We ruin not the infrastructure itself, but the enemies plan. Our artillery’s work is aimed at demoralizing the enemy. There were hits on the bridge, but they were sophisticated,” she said.

Ukraine’s armed forces posted a video on social messaging site Telegram last night purportedly showing several missiles striking the bridge which is seen as a vital supply route for Russian forces in the city, and used to keep them stocked with ammunition and other heavy weaponry and equipment. Ukraine has previously attacked the bridge, as seen in this image below.

A picture taken on July 21, 2022 shows a car moving past a crater on Kherson’s Antonovsky bridge across the Dnipro river caused by a Ukrainian rocket strike, amid the ongoing Russian military action in Ukraine.

Stringer | Afp | Getty Images

Russian media also reported Wednesday that the Antonoskyy Bridge had been damaged as a result of an Ukrainian attack, but tried to downplay the significance.

“There are hits on the bridge, the bridge has not been destroyed. More holes have been added,” news agency Tass quoted the deputy head of the Russian-installed military-civilian administration of the Kherson region, Kirill Stremousov, as saying.

“At the moment, the bridge is completely closed to traffic,” he added, reportedly telling Tass that the strikes were carried out by Ukraine’s U.S.-supplied HIMARS light multiple rocket launchers.

The Russian-installed official claimed the damage to the bridge had “affected only civilian infrastructure and created inconvenience for residents of the Kherson region” and said “the attack on the bridge does not affect the situation in the Kherson region.” Repair of the bridge will begin soon, he added.

Holly Ellyatt

The Nord Stream 1 pipeline, through which Russian natural gas has been flowing to Germany since 2011, will be shut down for around 10 days for scheduled maintenance work.

Picture Alliance | Picture Alliance | Getty Images

Gas flows through the Nord Stream 1 from Russia to Germany fell to 20% of the pipeline’s capacity on Wednesday, as Gazprom had previously forewarned.

Gas grid operator Gascade said that 1.28 million cubic meters per hour, or about 20% of Nord Stream’s maximum capacity, has been transported via Nord Stream 1 in accordance with nominations since 8 a.m. local time, Reuters reported Wednesday morning.

The supply cut has come into force just two days after the pipeline’s majority owner Gazprom said it would cut supplies via the route — which was already operating at greatly reduced capacity, and had just reopened last week after 10 days of annual maintenance — saying it had further maintenance to do on a turbine.

The decline in flows is causing concern in Europe, and particularly Germany, which still relies heavily on Russian gas while it scrambles to reduce its dependence on such supplies due to the war in Ukraine.

EU countries agreed Tuesday to lower their respective gas use by 15% from August to March as fears set in over the winter outlook. The agreement foresees EU states making voluntary cuts to their own gas demands but could become compulsory if the energy rationing is not properly implemented.

— Holly Ellyatt

US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen speaks during a press conference in Bali on July 14, 2022. U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Janet Yellen highlighted a proposed price cap on Russian oil on a call with British Chancellor of the Exchequer Nadhim Zahawi on Tuesday, the U.S. Treasury Department announced in a press release published on the same day. The proposed price cap aims to alleviate the impact of Putin’s war on global energy prices and curtail Russia’s war revenue.

Sonny Tumbelaka | Afp | Getty Images

U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen discussed a proposed price cap on Russian oil with U.K. Chancellor of the Exchequer Nadhim Zahawi, according to readout from the Treasury.

Yellen has previously said a limit on Russian oil prices would “deny Putin revenue his war machine needs.”

The two also discussed U.S. and U.K. support for Ukraine as well as “opportunities to build on the historic sanctions imposed on Russia,” according to the Treasury readout.

— Natalie Tham

Ukraine’s armed forces have reportedly shelled the Antonovskyy Bridge that leads into Russian-occupied Kherson in southern Ukraine.

The armed forces posted a video on social messaging site Telegram last night purportedly showing several missiles striking the bridge which was occupied early on in the Russian invasion of Ukraine. The reports have not been able to be independently confirmed by CNBC.

The bridge is seen as a vital supply route for Russian forces in the city used to keep them stocked with ammunition and other heavy weaponry and equipment. It’s not the first time the bridge has come under attack as Ukraine attempts to recapture the city.

Last week Ukrainian shelling left the bridge partially damaged and some reports suggest it could have been destroyed last night but that has not been confirmed, and the state of the bridge is unknown.

— Holly Ellyatt

Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy attends the NATO summit via video link, as Russia’s attack on Ukraine continues, in Kyiv, Ukraine June 29, 2022.

Ukrainian Presidential Press Service | via Reuters

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said Russia is using gas prices to terrorize Europe.

“Among other things the engineered increase in gas prices to above $2000 for 1,000 cubic meters on European markets, is enough of an experience to broaden sanctions against Russia,” Zelenskyy said during a nightly address.

“As it is clear to everyone that this is intended Russian price terror against Europeans. Using Gazprom, Moscow is doing all it can to make this coming winter as harsh as possible for the European countries. Terror must be answered, impose sanctions,” he added.

— Amanda Macias

Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin speaks at a news briefing at the Pentagon on July 20, 2022 in Arlington, Virginia.

Anna Moneymaker | Getty Images

U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin spoke with his Ukrainian counterpart and gave an update on the latest U.S. military aid package.

Austin reassured Ukrainian Minister of Defense Oleksii Reznikov that the United States is moving as quickly as possible to deliver equipment to Ukraine. Reznikov also updated Austin on the situation on the battlefield.

The latest security package will include additional High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems, or HIMARS. The HIMARS, manufactured by defense giant Lockheed Martin, are designed to shoot a variety of missiles from a mobile 5-ton truck.

— Amanda Macias

Wally Adeyemo, deputy U.S. Treasury secretary, speaks during a news conference at the Department of Justice in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Monday, Nov. 8, 2021.

Ting Shen | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Deputy Secretary of the Treasury Wally Adeyemo met with government counterparts in Paris this week to discuss additional sanctions imposed on Russia for its war in Ukraine.

Adeyemo also spoke with the executive director of the International Energy Agency about a price cap on Russian oil and other ways of restricting revenue to fund Russia’s military.

“In addition, Deputy Secretary Adeyemo met with financial services executives as well as economists and scholars to analyze the economic outlook in the United States, France, Europe, and globally, and the impact of Russia’s illegal war, particularly on global energy prices and food insecurity,” according to a readout from the Department of Treasury.

In the months since Russia invaded its ex-Soviet neighbor, Washington and its allies have imposed rounds of coordinated sanctions that vaulted Russia past Iran and North Korea as the world’s most-sanctioned country.

— Amanda Macias

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