Latest on Ukraine: Wagner chief Prigozhin died as Russia’s war turned 1 1/2

Yevgeny Prigozhin, chief of Wagner Group, died in a plane crash, causing speculation on the future of his mercenary company’s operations in Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and elsewhere.

Looking forward: There is uncertainty about the future of the Russian mercenaries after the death of Prigozhin.
* Ukrainian troops have recently taken the settlement of Robotyne, adding to expectations of further Ukrainian advances.
* A United Nations commission is due to visit Ukraine this week to investigate reports of human rights violations and breaches of international law.

What happened: Yevgeny Prigozhin, head of the Wagner Group, died in a plane crash in Russia last week, raising questions about the impact on the ongoing conflict in Ukraine.
* The plane crash, which killed all 10 people on board, occurred two months after Prigozhin led an attempted mutiny with his mercenary company in Russia.
* The cause of the crash is unknown, and both Kremlin and Ukrainian government have denied involvement.
* The Ukraine war has been a contentious topic in the U.S. Republican presidential nomination debate, with candidates divided on the U.S.’s role in supporting Ukraine against Russia.
* Last Thursday marked Ukraine’s second Independence Day during Russia’s invasion, now at a year and a half.

In war: Confrontations continue between Ukraine and Russia, with recent Ukrainian missile and drone attacks towards Moscow and Crimea.
* Russia claims its air defenses intercepted these attacks, which potentially represent some of the largest coordinated Ukrainian air attacks on Russian-held territory to date.
* Due to the ongoing conflict, Under-Secretary-General Rosemary DiCarlo reported that the UN workers had documented the deaths of 9,444 civilians, including 545 children, in Ukraine, with the actual numbers likely being higher.

International impact: The BRICS countries met for a summit without Russian President Vladimir Putin, who defended Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in a video message to the summit.
* Meanwhile, in Moscow, a court extended American journalist Evan Gershkovich’s pretrial detention by three months, with the U.S. government saying he was wrongfully detained by Russia.
* The events in Ukraine, and Russia’s role, have ripple effects worldwide, as seen in various areas including diplomacy, economy, and political attitudes.

View original article on NPR

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