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Russo-Ukrainian war, day 691: Ukraine downs Russia’s valuable AWACS A-50 aircraft

Ukrainian forces hit Russia’s valuable A-50 early warning and control aircraft and IL-22 airborne control center. This may be the Russian Air Force’s most devastating loss since the start of the all-out war. Estonian Prime Minister Kaja Kallas warns that Europe has three to five years to prepare for a potential military threat from Russia on NATO’s eastern flank.

Exclusive

Ukraine’s victory demands more than drones. “Boots on the ground” define true territory control, says Navy commander. Ukraine created the world’s first fleet of naval drones, paralyzing Russia’s Black Sea Fleet. However, can occupied Crimea – the apple of Vladimir Putin’s eye – be liberated by drones alone?
Americans want to support Ukraine. By backing Ukraine, everyday Americans are answering a call to stand on principle and support a fellow democracy, renewing faith in US ideals often doubted abroad.

Military

Russia reportedly loses valuable AWACS A-50 aircraft over Azov Sea (updates). Late on 14 January, Ukrainian forces hit Russia’s valuable A-50 early warning and control aircraft and IL-22 airborne control center. This may be the Russian Air Force’s most devastating loss since the start of the all-out war.

Times: Europe has three-five years to prepare for Russian military threat, Estonian PM says. Estonian Prime Minister Kaja Kallas emphasized the importance of maintaining unity and a strong stance on Ukraine, arguing that any pause would allow Russia to gather resources and strength.

Russian troops carried out 45 unsuccessful assault operations on Zaporizhzhia front over last week, Ukraine says. On the frontlines, Russian troops and Ukrainian armed forces clashed more than 516 times during the past week. The highest number of attacks repelled by the Ukrainian Army were conducted on the Avdiivka and Mariupol fronts, said spokesperson of the General Staff of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, Andrii Kovaliov, according to Ukrinform.

Ukrainian forces destroy Russia’s surface-to-air missile system, rocket launcher, two surveillance systems in Kherson Oblast over last 24 hours. Over the last 24 hours, Ukrainian armed forces in Kherson Oblast have destroyed at least 21 pieces of Russian military equipment and taken down 21 occupiers, Operational Command South informs.

ISW: Russia unlikely to achieve significant breakthroughs during a new offensive in Ukraine’s east, south. Despite their offensive efforts, the ISW suggests that Russian forces may face difficulties in achieving operationally significant breakthroughs in their winter campaign.

Intelligence and technology

Ukraine develops armor-piercing ammunition for FPV drones. EFP-S munitions are effective against lightly armored vehicles, even those protected with anti-cumulative and anti-drone measures.

UK intel: War against Ukraine creates healthcare sector challenges for Russia’s civilian population. The impact of the Kremlin’s war against Ukraine is taking a toll on Russia’s civilian population, especially in the healthcare sector, according to a report from the UK Defense Ministry. Russian citizens are reportedly struggling to access hospital services, with shortages of medical supplies, including crucial antibiotics.

International

Davos communique sets stage for global cooperation on Ukraine Peace Formula. “The task of the world community shall not only be to end the war, but also to overcome the consequences of all those crises that were caused by it throughout the world,” the communiqué reads.

Duda: Russo-Ukrainian war to dominate Davos discussions. Russia’s ongoing war in Ukraine will be one of the key topics at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, according to Polish President Andrzej Duda.

Switzerland to host Global Peace Summit. “I am grateful to Mrs. President and her team for the agreement that our teams will start preparations for the Global Peace Summit at the level of leaders in Switzerland starting tomorrow,” Zelenskyy said.

Switzerland to allocate over $1.7 billion for Ukraine’s 2025-2028 recovery efforts. Additionally, Amherd and Zelenskyy discussed issues related to humanitarian demining in Ukraine and food security, which is affected by Russia’s ongoing sea blockade of Ukraine’s ports.

New developments

Minister urges Ukrainians to assemble FPV drone for army at home. Over 100 home-assembled drones have already been supplied to the military through the “People’s Drone” project

Over 60,000 Ukrainian troops trained under UK military programs since Russia launched all-out war. Britain has been instrumental in training over 60,000 Ukrainian military personnel since Russia’s started its full-scale invasion of Ukraine in 2014, announced UK Defence Secretary Grant Shapps.

Read our earlier daily review here.

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