#UKRAINERUSSIAWAR. Battle for Adviidka the Russians intensify attacks. Zelensky asks for 60 billion from the US Senate. Russian sanctions are not passed on to the EU

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The US House of Representatives has approved a ban on the import of uranium from the Russian Federation. The decision was supported by both parties in Congress.

According to a New York Times report: After the failure of the Ukrainian offensive, the United States and Ukraine are pushing a new strategy to continue the war with Russia and prevent a “freezing” of the conflict. As part of these efforts, a three-star American general is in Kiev these days, he is Antonio Alzona Aguto. Antonio A. Aguto Jr., 57, graduated from the United States Military Academy with a degree in aerospace engineering. He took part in the Iraq campaigns of the early 1990s and 2000s, as well as the war in Afghanistan. Aguto commanded the 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment in California from 2010 to 2012, then took command of the Germany-based 7th Army Training Center, the U.S. Army’s primary overseas military training center . In 2019-2021, the General commanded the 3rd Infantry Division and then received command of the First Army. From this position Aguto was sent to deal with Ukraine: since December 2022 he has been the commander of the Security Assistance Group–Ukraine.

Kiev and Washington are currently busy developing a new military strategy aimed at reviving Kiev’s chances of success on the battlefield. A series of headquarters war exercises are planned for January 2024 in Wiesbaden, Germany, as part of which Ukrainian and American military leaders intend to draw up new strategic plans.

According to the NYT, the United States supports a strategy of maintaining territories and accumulating forces that will allow the Ukrainian armed forces to become a real threat to the Russian Federation between the end of 2024 and the beginning of 2025. According to American strategists , this will force Moscow to come to the negotiating table on Ukrainian conditions. Since December 2022, Aguto has, as mentioned, headed the security assistance group in Ukraine, which is based in Germany. Now Aguto will stay in Kiev for a long time so that the American recommendations can be implemented more quickly.

As American journalists note, this step represents a departure from the strategy previously adopted by the Biden administration, according to which American military advisors cannot be constantly deployed on the territory of Ukraine. General Aguto’s mission will result in even greater US involvement directly in the conflict in Ukraine.

Volodimyr Zelensky arrived at the US Congress on December 12 to convince lawmakers not to cut off aid to Ukraine. Live footage from CNN shows Zelensky, dressed in a sweater, accompanied by Senate Democratic and Republican leaders Chuck Schumer and Mitch McConnell. The day before he had met with Secretary of Defense Austin.

After speaking in the Senate, Zelensky will meet with Speaker of the House of Representatives Mike Johnson. The White House’s request for an additional $60 billion for Ukraine has been blocked by the Republican opposition, most of whom want to trade the aid for radical pardon reform, while a minority questions the wisdom of further spending and calls for efforts to end the conflict.

The head of European diplomacy Borrell, following the results of the EU Council of Foreign Ministers, said that funding for military assistance to Kiev remains blocked. EU countries have failed to agree on a ban on Russia’s oil sales in the 12th sanctions package. In Brussels there is no confidence that at the EU summit on 14-15 December it will be possible to open negotiations with Ukraine on joining the community. Austria and Hungary are against starting negotiations on Ukraine’s accession to the EU under current conditions.

On the Russian social media there has been talk in recent days of a potential Russian border with the West near Krakow, sparking protests in Warsaw and Kiev.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has ratified the agreement with Belarus on the creation of joint education and training centers. The relevant law can be found online. The document indicates the main tasks of the future centers: joint training of military contingents of the two countries, organization of their tasks, exchange of experience in the use of weapons and military equipment, training of personnel to work on samples of the partner’s military equipment, unification of approaches to combat training.

Furthermore, the agreement provides for exemption from taxation of military contingents and movable property of both countries on each other’s territory, as well as from taxes on personnel salaries. The transportation of military equipment is carried out at the expense of the sender. Earlier, Putin signed a bill ratifying the agreement on mutual recognition of traffic violations with Belarus.

Spokesman of the Russian Presidency Dmitry Peskov regarding new military assistance for Kiev said: “Any further American assistance to Ukraine will fail,” “Tens of billions of dollars poured into Ukraine have not helped it achieve success on the field of battle,” Peskov added.

And now a look at the front line update at 4pm on December 12th.

Bachmut Directorate (Artemovsk). The Russian army continues to advance along the highway to Chasov Yar and in the direction of Bogdanovka. In Kleshchiivka, as in Andriivka, the fighting continues.

Donetsk direction. In the Avdiivski sector fighting continues near Stepnoe. Data is emerging on leaks in the treatment plant area near the metallurgy plant. South of Avdiivka, the Russians advanced north of the Vinogradniki SNT. In Marinka there are battles for the suburbs.

Zaporozhzhie Directorate. In the Orichiv sector, the Russian army returned part of the positions in Novoprokopovka. Meanwhile, the Ukrainian Armed Forces unsuccessfully try to attack in the area of Verbovoe and Rabotino. On the Vremevsky ledge the Russians advance towards Staromayorsky and Urozhayne.

In detail in the battle for Avdiivka: the advance of the Russian armed forces is recorded in the development in the southern suburbs. On December 10, the next phase of the operation of the Russian Armed Forces in Avdiivka began: again on December 10, the General Staff of the Ukrainian Armed Forces reported the most massive Russian artillery attack against the positions of Ukrainian formations since the beginning of the conflict .

According to the Non-Humanitarian Aid channel, after occupying the Yasinovataya-2 industrial zone, Russian units managed to establish control over the SNT “Vinogradniki”, bypassing the sand pit and reaching Kolosova Street. Now battles no longer take place just on the outskirts, but directly in the development of the largest fortified area of ​​the Ukrainian Armed Forces near Donetsk.

The Northern and Tonenky Armed Forces of the Russian Federation do not stop trying to reach the outskirts of the villages. At the same time, extensive attacks on the positions of the Ukrainian Armed Forces in Pervomaisky have resumed: aviation and artillery are operating in its western part, opening the way for assault groups.

The main task of the Russian Armed Forces in this area is a breakthrough in the direction of the Khimik microdistrict. This will make it possible to strike the group of the Ukrainian Armed Forces in Avdiivka, break the unified defense system and significantly simplify the assault on the entire fortified area.

However, the Ukrainian formations do not intend to retreat without a fight and have concentrated over 40 battalions of 8 brigades in the vicinity of the city; Furthermore, Kiev has also increased the number of artillery guns in the area, as well as stocks of FPV drones.

Graziella Giangiulio 

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