Russia’s war on Ukraine latest news: Conflict rages in Donetsk

Nov 18 (Reuters) – Russian missiles and shells hit Ukrainian positions in several regions and there was no let up in heavy fighting in Donetsk in the east, the Ukrainian military said on Thursday night as Moscow’s occupying forces appeared more active.

FIGHTING

* Russia pounded gas production facilities and a major missile factory in new missile strikes on critical infrastructure in Ukraine, Ukrainian officials said.

* Investigators in Ukraine’s recently liberated southern region of Kherson have uncovered 63 bodies with signs of torture after Russian forces left, Ukraine’s interior minister was quoted as saying. A Ukrainian human rights investigator released a video of what he said was a Russian torture chamber.

* Under rainy skies, Ukrainian-controlled Kherson’s central square was a frenetic melee of humanitarian aid queues and patriotic celebration tinged with uncertainty. Hundreds of residents switched the Russian SIM cards in their phones for local ones.

MH17

* Dutch judges convicted three men of murder for their role in the 2014 shooting down of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 over Ukraine, and sentenced them to life in prison. A fourth man was acquitted.

* Russia rejected what it called a “scandalous” ruling and said the proceedings had not been impartial.

* Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese welcomed the Dutch court’s ruling. Thirty-eight Australians were among the 298 passengers and crew killed in the incident.

GRAIN DEAL

* A deal aimed at easing global food shortages by facilitating Ukraine’s agricultural exports from its southern Black Sea ports was extended for 120 days.

* The Kremlin said it had been given assurances by the United Nations that work will be finalised on removing barriers to Russia’s exports of agricultural products and fertilisers.

DIPLOMACY

* Russia is not considering using nuclear weapons, the Kremlin said. President Vladimir Putin has said Russia will defend its territory with all available means, including its nuclear weapons, if attacked. Russian officials say the West has repeatedly misinterpreted Kremlin statements.

* U.S. Central Intelligence Agency Director William Burns and Putin’s spy chief discussed “sensitive” questions when they met this week in Turkey, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said.
* The U.N. nuclear watchdog’s 35-nation Board of Governors passed its third resolution calling on Russia to end all actions at Ukrainian nuclear facilities, diplomats said.
* The U.S. government plans to issue guidance in coming days on a Russian oil price cap taking effect on Dec. 5.

Compiled by Cynthia Osterman and Simon Cameron-Moore

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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