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The Ukrainian armed forces have started deploying drones coated with toxic substances and Cheryomukha grenades filled with tear gas-like agents in the special military operation (SMO) zone, a member of the Union of SMO Veterans told TASS.

Ukrainian army urges Zelensky to lose camo, deal with corruption MikeRivero Wed, 10/04/2023 - 08:26

Ukrainian soldiers are appalled by the rampant corruption among the state's top officials and the lack of interest of President Vladimir Zelensky to do anything about it, Politico reported with reference to Ukraine's ex-Minister of Infrastructure (2016-2019) Vladimir Omelyan who is currently an officer in the armed forces.

A Qatari official said Doha could potentially host diplomats from Russia and Ukraine for negotiations aimed at ending the war. Qatar recently played a crucial role in brokering the release of American prisoners in Iran. 

Russia has no plans for an additional mobilisation of men to fight in Ukraine as more than 335,000 have signed up so far this year to fight in the armed forces or voluntary units, Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu said on Tuesday.

Russia has been bolstering its armed forces and ramping up weapons production in the expectation of a long war in Ukraine, where front lines have barely shifted for a year.

Belarus Begins Army Combat Readiness Exercises MikeRivero Wed, 10/04/2023 - 07:26

The Belarusian Defence Ministry said on Tuesday it had started exercises to check its armed forces' combat readiness.

"The troops will march as soon as possible to the designated areas, followed by the performance of normative standards on the subjects of combat training," the ministry said. It did not specify when the exercises would end.

The manoeuvres will take place in the Minsk and Vitebsk regions and will involve military hardware and aviation.

The Russian Investigative Committee has charged Ukrainian military intelligence chief Kirill Budanov and several other military commanders in absentia for authorizing drone attacks on Russian territory, placing all individuals’ names on the wanted list, the law enforcement agency’s press service told TASS.

Angola’s government has introduced a visa-free regime for Russian nationals, aiming to boost tourism and investment opportunities, news outlet Izvestia reported on Tuesday, citing Vladimir Tararov, Moscow’s ambassador to the African nation.

On September 29, a presidential decree was signed on the abolition of tourist visas with a number of countries, including Russia. On the same day it came into force immediately after publication,” Tararov told Izvestia.

Germany and Lithuania are working on creating a road map for the deployment of a brigade of German soldiers to the Baltic state, Defense Minister Boris Pistorius announced in an interview with the news outlet ERR on Monday.

The minister announced several weeks ago that Berlin planned to send as many as 4,000 troops to Lithuania, which already houses around 1,500 German troops as part of a NATO battlegroup. 

In the recent interview, he explained that the move was being done in order to show “solidarity and responsibility in the East Wing.”