Russia and Ukraine have both launched criminal investigations into strikes that have reportedly killed at least 40 Ukrainian prisoners of war who were held at a pre-trial detention centre in the village of Olenivka, after both countries blamed the other side for the attack.
Ukraine’s foreign minister, Dmytro Kuleba, has accused Russia of a “petrifying war crime” over the killings and called on world leaders to “recognise Russia as a terrorist state”.
Ukraine has said it is ready for grain exports to leave its ports again but is waiting for the go-ahead from the United Nations, which it hoped it would receive later on Friday.
Horrific video has emerged that appears to show a Russian soldier castrating a Ukrainian prisoner, who other reports suggest was subsequently murdered. The footage, reviewed by the Guardian, was originally posted on pro-Russian Telegram channels. Aric Toler at investigative outlet Bellingcat, suggested that the video – featuring a Russian soldier, wearing a distinctive black wide-brimmed hat, approaching another figure who has his hands bound and is lying face down with the back of his trousers cut away – appeared to be authentic .
At least five people have been killed and seven injured in a strike on a bus stop in the city of Mykolaiv, according to the regional governor, Vitaliy Kim. Graphic images from the scene show the street littered with bodies.
Vladimir Putin’s press secretary, Dmitry Peskov, said on Friday that Russia staunchly supported China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, after the Chinese president, Xi Jinping, warned the US president, Joe Biden, against “playing with fire” over Taiwan in a phone call on Thursday.
Germany’s economy minister said on Friday that putting the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline into operation was not an option as this would only play into the hands of the Russian president, Vladimir Putin. There is growing anger in Germany over soaring energy prices.
Aleksandr Viktorovich Ionov, a Russian operative who was subjected to US sanctions on Friday, has been charged with using political groups in the US to advance pro-Russia propaganda, including during the invasion of Ukraine earlier this year.
The US treasury department said on Friday it had imposed sanctions on another individual alongside Ionov, as well as on four entities that support the Kremlin’s global malign influence and election interference operations, including in the US and Ukraine.
Belarus recalled its UK ambassador on Friday in response to what it called “hostile and unfriendly” actions by London.
North Macedonia plans to donate an unspecified number of Soviet-era tanks to Ukraine as it seeks to modernise its own military to meet Nato standards, its defence ministry said on Friday.
Germany would deliver 16 Biber bridge-layer tanks to Ukrainian forces, the German defence ministry said.
A Ukrainian court on Friday reduced to 15 years a life sentence handed to a Russian soldier in May for pre-meditated murder in the country’s first war crimes trial.
A Russian ammunition depot in the southern Kherson region had been destroyed, Ukrainian officials said on Friday.
The UK defence minister, Ben Wallace, has said Russian forces in Ukraine are in “a very difficult spot”, and that Putin’s strategy was akin to putting his forces through a meat grinder. In his opinion, he said, Russia was “certainly not able to occupy the country. They may be able to carry on killing indiscriminately and destroying as they go, but that is not a victory.”