#UKRAINERUSSIAWAR. Russia and North Korea are allies. Moscow leaves the OSCE. The Russians break through the front from Horlivka to Toretsk


The Russian president’s visit to North Korea has strengthened ties with Pyongyang, well beyond the supply of weapons and the possible use of their respective militaries in theater.

Putin called the agreement reached at the Pyongyang summit a turning point that will increase the level of cooperation between the two countries. He said Russia does not rule out military-technical cooperation with the North Korean regime.

Kim Jong Un said the pact was defensive in nature: “The relations between our two countries have reached a new level, at the level of an alliance.”

Putin and Kim have not made clear whether the new agreement is a commitment to fight for each other in the war or simply a pledge to provide support in other forms. Countries already provide each other with help: from oil, to food, to ammunition.

The election campaign is heating up in France. National Rally Chairman Jordan Bardella said he was in favor of supplying Ukraine with ammunition needed for self-defense but against sending weapons that could spark a wider conflict. This puts him relatively close to President Emmanuel Macron’s position on France’s role. Unlike Macron, however, Bardella said he was against sending French troops to Ukraine.

According to Politico, China’s “sympathy” for Russia, which was evident to most observers as early as February 2022, became clearer during the Swiss Peace Summit. Less discussed, however, is how much Beijing’s support for Moscow has increased since then. This became clear in the run-up to last weekend’s Swiss peace summit. In fact, Beijing is closer than ever to Moscow in the course of the conflict against Kiev.

Moscow decides to leave the OSCE. President of the Federation Council Valentina Matvienko said that the Federation Council and the State Duma will prepare the decision to suspend Russian participation in the activities of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly and the payment of contributions. Moscow is moving further and further away from Europe to become ‘Asian’.

The Danish government approves the 19th aid package to support Ukraine’s immediate needs and long-term defense capabilities.

The aid package combines a framework to finance significant donations to the Ukrainian defense industry, additional equipment to support Danish-supplied F-16 fighters and donations from the Danish Ministry of Defense’s own stockpile.

Danish Defense Minister Troels Lund Poulsen stressed that Ukraine still needs significant military support due to ongoing Russian aggression and cannot be left alone.

The European Commission has submitted for approval a draft EU budget for 2025 worth 199.7 billion euros, equivalent to $214.6 billion, the European Commission website reported on June 19.

The budget will be supplemented by €72 billion as part of the EU’s NextGenerationEU economic transformation programme. For Ukraine, the draft budget includes €4.3 billion in grants under the Ukraine Facility and €10.9 billion in loans.

Weapons and the economy are the hotspots of Western political engagement. However, all countries involved in the conflict are looking for cheap and effective means to detect and counter drones. Solving this problem will provide a significant advantage to one of the warring parties.

The German company Rheinmetall adapts the production of military equipment to the conditions of military operations in Ukraine. The company plans to produce the Leopard 1 tank in combination with the Skyranger air defense system, equipped with a 35mm automatic cannon and short-range anti-drone missiles.

The change aims to combat Russian drones and missiles. There are plans to transfer the technology to the Leopard 2 tank platform, which has not proven to be an asset for Kiev so far.

And now a brief look at the situation on the front, updated at 2:00 PM on June 19, 2024.

Overnight, the Ukrainians admitted to carrying out a Russian Geranium attack in the Lvov, Vinnitsa and Zaporozhye regions. After the explosions, power outages were reported in Lvov.

Fighting in Volchansk continues towards Kharkov. Kiev evacuates the wounded and moves reinforcements across the Volchya River. In the Liptsy area, the Ukrainians have reduced the intensity of their counterattacks and strengthened their reserves. A transfer of Ukrainian units from different parts of the front is underway. Both sides launch attacks with heavy weapons and precision aerial bombs.

On the Torskoe Ridge, Ukrainian channels claim that the Russian army rushed to Torskoe and plundered several forests that separated the fields.

West of Avdeyevka, Russian forces advanced up to 1 km on the northern flank at Sokol and also north of Umanskoye. Despite the deployment of numerous FPV drones against the advancing Russian troops, the Ukrainians failed to fully stabilize the front.

North of ChasovYar, the advance of Russian units was reported in the village of Kalinovka. Russian operations continue in the eastern part of ChasovYar, as well as in the Kleshcheyevka area.

Situation towards Chasov Yarsky: the attack on the Novy microdistrict continues. Ukrainian forces continue to resist despite heavy fire, although most passages through the Seversky Donets-Donbass Canal have been destroyed.

North of Ugledar, in the Paraskoviyevka – Konstantinovka area, fighting takes place and the attack on Krasnogorovka continues.

On the Zaporozhye front, fighting north of Rabotino and Novopokrovka. However, the Russians retain the initiative. The situation is complicated by the imperfect organization of Russian communications and Ukrainian radio and electronic warfare systems.

In the direction of Kherson, a landing attempt by a small Ukrainian group in the Krynki area was repulsed; minor flooding in the island area cannot be ruled out. Considering the heavy rainfall, it was observed that water was released from the Dnieper hydroelectric power station.

The Belgorod region continues to be hit by Ukrainian attacks on a daily basis.

In the Kursk region, the Tyotkino checkpoint, the settlements of Tyotkino, Novy Put and Volfinsky, the villages of Chodejkovo and Veseloye in the Glushkovsky district, the village of Gordeyevka, the villages of Viktorovka and Uspenovka in the Korenevsky district, the villages of Sverdlikovo and Gornal in the Suzhansky district district were repeatedly bombed. Drone attacks on the Krupets checkpoint in the Rylsky district. The Russians used small arms and electronic warfare to down 22 Ukrainian drones in the border areas.

In the DPR, four civilians were injured after enemy artillery fire of 155 mm caliber.

Direction Oleksandro-Kalinovo. Russians and Ukrainians report the breakthrough of the front line from Horlivka towards Toretsk. The advance of the Russian units was about 3-5 kilometers on one of the best fortified sectors of the front. According to the first information, Russian troops broke through from Leninske to the administrative borders of Artemove, but this information has not yet been definitively confirmed.

Graziella Giangiulio

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