November 19, 2022 Russia-Ukraine news

By Adrienne Vogt

Updated 4:09 PM ET, Sat November 19, 2022
5 Posts
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12:42 p.m. ET, November 19, 2022

UK prime minister visits Kyiv to show support for Ukraine

From Kareem Khadder in Kyiv and Niamh Kennedy in London

UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak meets with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in Kyiv, Ukraine, on Saturday, November 19.
UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak meets with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in Kyiv, Ukraine, on Saturday, November 19. (Ukrainian Presidential Press Office/AP)

British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak is in Kyiv to meet with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in a show of support for the country in his first visit since becoming UK leader.

“The Prime Minister is in Ukraine today for his first visit to Kyiv to meet President Zelenskyy and confirm continued UK support,” a Downing Street spokesperson said. 

A CNN crew in Kyiv earlier spotted Sunak and Zelensky on Saturday during the visit, while they were touring an outdoor square. 

Zelensky posted a video on his official Telegram channel of him receiving Sunak in a snowy Kyiv. 

"Since the first days of the war, Ukraine and the UK have been the strongest of allies. During today's meeting, we discussed the most important issues both for our countries and for global security," Zelensky said in the post. 

"Together we are stronger, and we will achieve the desired results," the Ukrainian president added. 

In a tweet, Sunak said, "we are with you all the way."

10:04 a.m. ET, November 19, 2022

Poland barring Russia from security organization talks is "unprecedented and provocative," Moscow says

From CNN's Gabby Gretener in London

 

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov speaks at a council meeting in Moscow, Russia, on November 18.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov speaks at a council meeting in Moscow, Russia, on November 18. (Sefa Karacan/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

Poland has barred Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov from attending the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) Council of Foreign Ministers. The meeting is scheduled for Dec. 1 and Dec. 2 in Lodz, Poland.

On Saturday, Russia's Foreign Ministry responded to Warsaw's refusal in a statement, saying Poland's decision as OSCE Chairman-in-Office is "unprecedented and provocative." In the statement, the foreign ministry called for the OSCE to have a "rules-based order."

Poland has also barred a Russian delegation from participating in the autumn session of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly, which will be held in Warsaw from November 24 to 26. The Russian ministry said this was a "culmination of Poland's anti-chairmanship in the organisation."

Admission of the Russian delegation to the OSCE session "would violate the principle of solidarity with Ukraine," the head of Poland’s delegation to the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly, Barbara Bartus, said in response to the request for visas, according to Vladimir Dzhabarov, first deputy chair of the Russian Federation Council Committee on International Affairs. Dzhabarov made the statement on Wednesday.

8:03 a.m. ET, November 19, 2022

Nikopol district in southern Ukraine hit by Russian shells overnight, official says

From Kostan Nechyporenko from Kyiv

Russian shelling hit the southern Ukrainian Nikopol district overnight Friday into Saturday, according to the head of the Nikopol district military administration. 

“About sixty shells and rocket munitions fell on peaceful settlements,” Yevhen Yevtushenko said in a Telegram post on Saturday.

Although residential buildings and cars were damaged, no one was reported injured in the shelling, Yevtushenko added. 

Experts are currently surveying the sites of attacks in the Marhanets and Myrove communities and the city of Nikopol, the official said.  

The Nikopol district is located in the Dnipropetrovsk region and sits across the river from the Russian-occupied Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant. 

8:05 a.m. ET, November 19, 2022

Zelensky says energy supply issues persist after Russian strikes

From CNN's Jennifer Hauser

A historic district in Kyiv experiences a blackout after a Russian missile attack on Ukrainian power infrastructure on November 11.
A historic district in Kyiv experiences a blackout after a Russian missile attack on Ukrainian power infrastructure on November 11. (Maxym Marusenko/NurPhoto/Getty Images)

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky says energy supply issues persist in the capital and 17 other regions Friday, even after utility officials indicated that power access had been restored across the country.

Speaking in his nightly address, Zelensky said it's still difficult to get enough electricity to "Kyiv region and Kyiv. It’s very difficult in the Odesa region, and also the Vinnytsia region and Ternopil region." 

The director of Ukraine's Energy Industry Research Center said earlier Friday that power had been restored nearly everywhere in the country, after 10 million customers lost service due to missile attacks Thursday.

Even when utilities repair infrastructure in Ukraine and customers regain access, operators have had to widely impose emergency cuts to deal with the country's diminished supply. That means regions only receive a limited amount of energy and are sometimes subject to intentional blackouts aimed at stabilizing and maintaining the fragile grid.

Fighting in the east: In his update, Zelensky also reported "fierce fighting" in the eastern Donetsk region. He claimed that about 100 Russian attacks were repelled in the region on Thursday alone.

Donetsk, which is one of four Ukrainian regions Moscow claims to have annexed, has been subject to some of the conflict's fiercest fighting.

8:06 a.m. ET, November 19, 2022

First train leaves Kyiv for liberated Kherson after 8 months of occupation

From CNN's Dennis Lapin in Kyiv

A passenger train to Kherson departs from Kyiv train station on Thursday.
A passenger train to Kherson departs from Kyiv train station on Thursday. (Metin Aktas/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

The first train from Kyiv to the recently liberated city of Kherson left Friday.

"This is our train of victory!" Kyrylo Tymoshenko, deputy head of the Office of the President of Ukraine, said on Telegram.

There were about 200 passengers on board.

"Like this train, we will return to Kherson everything for normal life!" Tymoshenko wrote.

Some context: Kherson residents lived under Russian occupation for eight months, but last week, Ukrainian forces swept into the city as Moscow's troops retreated east.

The return of the city, which was the only regional capital held by the Kremlin's forces, brought scenes of jubilation in the streets, where locals sang, waved flags and embraced Ukrainian soldiers.

Much work remains to restore basic services to the city and the region surrounding it, however, and Ukrainian officials are now investigating the brutality and torture suffered by detainees in the city.