Vladimir Putin’s admission that the Wagner group had been “fully funded” by the Russian state could make it easier for an international court to prosecute him for war crimes, experts in international law have said. In the year to May 2023 alone, Wagner reportedly received more than 86bn roubles from the state budget, or over a billion dollars.
Ukraine’s president Volodymyr Zelenskiy has warned that a “serious threat” remains at the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant and that Russia is “technically ready” to provoke a localised explosion at the facility. Zelenskiy cited Ukrainian intelligence as the source of his information and called for greater international attention to the situation at the facility, the largest nuclear plant in Europe.
Air defence systems were engaged early on Sunday in repelling a Russian air attack on Kyiv, Ukraine’s air force said. Witnesses heard blasts resembling the sound of air defence systems hitting targets, but there was no immediate information about potential damage.
A 51-year-old man has been killed and two others injured by shelling in Mala Tokmachka, a village near the frontline in the south-eastern region of Zaporizhia, local officials said. The head of the local military administration, Yuriy Malashko, described the site as a “frontline community under merciless enemy fire”.
US president Joe Biden will host Swedish prime minister Ulf Kristersson next week to talk about transatlantic security cooperation and the war in Ukraine, the White House said. The two leaders “will review our growing security cooperation and reaffirm their view that Sweden should join Nato as soon as possible”.
Austria, a neutral country, announced its intention to join the European Sky Shield initiative, launched in 2022 by Germany against the backdrop of the war in Ukraine. Austrian chancellor Karl Nehammer said the decision did not call into question the neutrality of the country but cited “a threat that has considerably worsened”. “We must and will take precautions to protect our country against the risk of drone or missile attacks,” he said.
Spanish prime minister Pedro Sánchez pledged the EU’s “unequivocal” support for Ukraine during a visit to Kyiv on the first day of Spain assuming presidency of the bloc. Sanchez said his visit “demonstrates a clear and unequivocal political commitment” to Ukraine’s bid to join the EU.
Ukrainian president Zelenskiy has expressed frustration over the slow deliveries of weapons and lack of clarity over pilot training by “some” western nations. “There is no schedule of training missions. I believe that some partners are dragging their feet. Why are they doing it? I don’t know,” Zelenskiy said.
Two children have been injured in the Russian shelling of a residential area in the southern Ukrainian city of Kherson, according to the regional governor. A nine-year-old girl and a 15-year-old boy were injured and are receiving medical treatment.