Weekly recap and look ahead (August 15) : NPR

A priest prays for unidentified civilians killed by Russian troops in Bucha, on the outskirts of Kyiv, Ukraine, August 11. Eleven unidentified bodies exhumed from a mass grave were buried in Bucha that day.

Efrem Lukatsky/AP

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Efrem Lukatsky/AP

A priest prays for unidentified civilians killed by Russian troops in Bucha, on the outskirts of Kyiv, Ukraine, August 11. Eleven unidentified bodies exhumed from a mass grave were buried in Bucha that day.

Efrem Lukatsky/AP

As the week begins, here’s an overview of the key events of the past week and a look ahead.

What to watch this week

The world follows as ships finally transport Ukrainian-grown food to global customers and famine-stricken destinations, including the Horn of Africa.

This week, Russian-backed separatists in the Donetsk region are expected to begin criminal trials against captured foreigners, including men from the United Kingdom, Sweden and Croatia, accused of working as mercenaries, Interfax reported.

On Tuesday, the Russian Ministry of Defense is holding its Moscow Conference on International Security.

NPR will also follow the progress of negotiations on a possible prisoner exchange between Russia and the United States.

What happened last week

August 8: The US Agency for International Development said it was providing $4.5 billion more in budget support for the government of Ukraine. And the Pentagon announced an additional $1 billion in homeland security aid.

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Russia stopped weapons inspections under its START nuclear arms control treaty with the USsaying that Western sanctions on travel make U.S. compliance checks impossible.

August 9: Ukraine said nine Russian military aircraft were destroyed at an air base in Crimea. Satellite images show several damaged fighter jets. Neither Ukraine nor Russia have officially revealed how this happened, but some US media have quoted unnamed Ukrainian officials as saying Ukraine did it.

President Biden signed the ratification by the US measure endorsing NATO membership for Finland and Sweden.

And the State Department announced $89 million in aid to Ukraine clear landmines and unexploded ordnance.

August 10: Annual inflation in Ukraine reached 22.2%, Kyiv Independent reportedciting official data for July.

August 11: Ukraine and Russia they blamed each other for new shelling of the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant in Russian-occupied southern Ukraine. The UN Security Council met to discuss the situation, with calls from UN and International Atomic Energy Agency leaders to halt hostilities around the site and allow a mission to inspect it. The European Union and 42 countries issued a joint statement calling on Russia to withdraw its military forces from the facility.

The Russian government confirmed negotiations were underway for a possible prisoner exchange which could free the American basketball player Brittney Griner and her fellow American in prison Paul Whalen. Attorneys for jailed WNBA star Greener said Monday they have filed an appeal against her conviction and nine-year sentence on drug charges.

August 12: Fighting in the Donetsk region of eastern Ukraine continueswith Russian forces conducting ground attacks in various locations, including around the town of Bakhmut, east of Siversk and northwest of the city of Donetsk, the Institute for the Study of War think tank said.

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August 13: Ukrainian forces destroyed a bridge on a hydroelectric dam in Russian-controlled territory in the Kherson region of southern Ukraine, with the aim of disrupt Russia’s ability to supply his army.

August 14: A ship left the Ukrainian port of Yuzhno with grain for Africa as part of a An initiative of the World Food Programme. The Lebanese-flagged Brave Commander is heading to Djibouti, from where the grain will be transferred to Ethiopia. It is one of more than two dozen ships reported to have left Ukraine in the past two weeks after Ukraine’s grain exports were mostly trapped in the country by the war.


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Who is behind the explosions in Crimea? Ukraine and Russia do not say.

Russia’s war in Ukraine is pushing Ukraine’s steel production to the brink.

The Cold War to Britney Greener: A New Twist in the US-Russia Prisoner Swap.

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A special report

Russia’s war in Ukraine is changing the world: see its ripple effects around the globe.

Earlier developments

You can read past recaps here. For context and deeper stories, you can find more of NPR’s coverage here. Also, listen to and subscribe to NPR Country of Ukraine podcast for updates throughout the day.

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