Putin says the Russian economy is doing better than expected

Russian President Vladimir Putin said late on Tuesday that the country’s economy was exceeding expectations, following an update from Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin.

During the Kremlin meeting, Mishustin said GDP growth may exceed 2% in 2023, while inflation may not exceed 5% annually. The International Monetary Fund forecasts GDP growth of 0.7% this year after a 2.1% decline in 2022.

According to a transcript on the Kremlin website, Putin said “at least for now” that the results were “better than previously expected, better than expected.”

Since an unprovoked invasion of its neighbor in February 2022, Russia has been on the receiving end of several waves of large-scale economic sanctions by Ukrainian allies.

— Elliott Smith

Russia and Ukraine are accused of a commercial attack on the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant

The Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant is seen as the presence of the Russian military at the nuclear power plant on August 11, 2022 in Zaporozhye, Ukraine.

Metin Aktas | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said on Tuesday that he had warned French President Emmanuel Macron that Russia was planning “dangerous provocations” at the Moscow-controlled Zaporizhia nuclear power plant.

“Now we have information from our intelligence that the Russian army placed objects resembling explosives on the roof of several blocks of the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant. Maybe to simulate an attack on the power plant. Maybe they have a different scenario,” Zelenskyy added. next to the video posted on Twitter.

“But in any case, the world sees – it cannot but see – that the only source of danger for the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant is Russia and no one else.”

Russian troops seized the plant, Europe’s largest nuclear facility, in the early days of the invasion in February 2022, and the two sides have since often accused each other of threatening it with shelling.

Russian state news agencies quoted an adviser to Russia’s nuclear network as saying that the Ukrainian military planned to attack the station using “long-range precision equipment and kamikaze attack drones”, although no evidence was offered to support the claim.

— Elliott Smith

Ukraine demands destruction of Russian unit; Moscow reports civilian casualties

The Ukrainian military claimed late on Tuesday that it had destroyed a Russian unit in Makiivka, a Moscow-held territory in the Donetsk region.

“As a result of accurate fire by units of the defense forces, another formation of Russian terrorists ceased to exist in the temporarily occupied Makiivka,” the Strategic Communications Office for the Armed Forces of Ukraine said. Telegram messaging applicationalong with video of apparent explosions in the distance.

The Russian-appointed head of the region, Denis Pushilin, claimed on Telegram that Ukrainian shelling had resulted in civilian casualties.

“Late in the evening, the enemy launched fierce attacks on residential areas and a hospital complex in the Makeevka Chervonogvarde district. The pressure wave was felt by most of the residents of Makeevka and Donetsk,” Pušilin said.

“There are currently 25 known victims, including two injured children: a girl aged 2 years 9 months. and a 7-year-old boy.”

Neither claim could be independently verified. Since the beginning of the Russian invasion, both sides have accused each other of attacking civilians and denied it.

— Elliott Smith

At least 31 injured, including nine children, during Russian shelling of Ukraine

At least 31 people, including nine children, were injured in Russian shelling of the small town of Pervomajskyi in Ukraine’s northeastern Kharkiv region, officials said on Tuesday.

Windows of multi-story buildings were broken and cars were set on fire in the shelling that occurred at 1:35 p.m. Kyiv time, Kharkiv Oblast Governor written by Oleh Synehubov in the Telegram messaging app.

Russia did not immediately comment on the incident, and CNBC was unable to independently verify the reports.

—Karen Gilchrist

Russia claims “certain contacts” with US over detained reporter Gershkovich

Russia said on Tuesday that “certain contacts” had been established with the US regarding the detention of Wall Street Journal reporter Evan Gershkovich.

A day after US Ambassador Lynne Tracy visited Gershkovich in a Moscow prison, the Kremlin said it did not want his talks with the American public.

“We said that there are certain contacts in this matter, but we do not want to make them public, they must be carried out and continue in absolute silence,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said, as translated by Reuters.

“As for the legal right to consular relations, that right must of course be secured on both sides.”

Russia has accused Gershkovich of espionage, which he denies.

—Karen Gilchrist

The voice recording is said to have come from the surfaces of Wagner’s Prigozhin

Wagner mercenary leader Yevgeny Prigozhin appears to have resurfaced on social media after being exiled to Belarus since his failed uprising 11 days ago.

The voice recording is said to be from Prigozhin Gray zone Telegram page — an account supporting Russian mercenaries with more than 500,000 subscribers.

NBC News cannot verify the audio report.

“Today more than ever we need your support. Thank you for it,” said the voice.

“I want you to understand that our ‘Justice March’ was aimed at fighting traitors and mobilizing our society. And I think we have achieved a lot,” it added.

“I’m sure you’ll see our next victory at the front in the near future. Thanks guys!”

NBC’s Moscow bureau reported that the voice sounded like Prigozhin’s, but that he was speaking more slowly than usual.

The mercenary leader has not been seen in public since the uprising 11 days ago.

—Karen Gilchrist

NATO extended Stoltenberg’s mandate by a year after failing to agree on a new leader

NATO agreed on Tuesday to extend the mandate of Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg for another year after members failed to agree on a new leader.

Stoltenberg, 64, who has been in the role since 2014, said he was honored by the decision, despite recently saying he did not plan to stay on beyond his current term, which is due to end on October 1.

Stoltenberg’s reappointment had been widely expected since last month. Estonian Prime Minister Kaja Kallas said last week that “the new NATO Secretary General is the good old NATO Secretary General.”

Kallas was one of the candidates being discussed to replace Stoltenberg, along with Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen, although neither candidate received enough support.

The extension of Stoltenberg’s mandate comes a week before NATO leaders meet in Vilnius, Lithuania for their annual summit.

—Karen Gilchrist

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