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Russia-Ukraine war: A weekly recap and look ahead (Aug. 8)

The cargo ship Razoni crosses the Bosporus Strait in Istanbul, Turkey, on Aug. 3. The first cargo ship to leave Ukraine since the Russian invasion was anchored at an inspection area in the Black Sea off the coast of Istanbul Wednesday morning before moving on to Lebanon.
Khalil Hamra
/
AP
The cargo ship Razoni crosses the Bosporus Strait in Istanbul, Turkey, on Aug. 3. The first cargo ship to leave Ukraine since the Russian invasion was anchored at an inspection area in the Black Sea off the coast of Istanbul Wednesday morning before moving on to Lebanon.

As the week begins, here's a roundup of key developments from the past week and a look ahead.

What to watch this week

On Wednesday, the European Union's Russian coal ban comes into effect.

On Thursday, Ukraine, the United Kingdom and Denmark are hosting allies for an international donors conference in Copenhagen.

What happened last week

Aug. 1: The first Ukrainian grain shipment since Russia's invasion left the Odesa port.

Also, the U.S. announced an additional $550 million in military aid to Ukraine, including more ammunition for U.S.-provided high mobility artillery rocket systems or HIMARS, as well as howitzers. Since the beginning of the Biden administration, Washington has committed some $8.7 billion in security assistance to Ukraine.

Aug. 2: Washington imposed new sanctions on Russian figures and defense- and technology-related entities.

Aug. 3: Russian airstrikes hit the southern Ukrainian city of Mykolaiv, damaging residential buildings, an industrial enterprise, a pier, a supermarket, a pharmacy and other sites, the local governor said.

Aug. 4: A Russian court sentenced U.S. basketball player Brittney Griner to nine years in prison on drug charges. Russia has said it is ready to discuss freeing Griner in a prisoner swap.

Amnesty International issued a report accusing the Ukrainian military of endangering civilians by stationing troops and artillery near hospitals, schools and residential buildings. Ukrainian and Western officials and analysts denounced the report, and Amnesty International's Ukraine chapter head quit in opposition to its claims.

Aug. 5: Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan held talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Sochi, Russia, and said Turkey would switch part of its payments for Russian gas to rubles and extend the use of Russia's Mir payment system. The leaders discussed boosting trade, as well as coordinating efforts in fighting militants in Syria.

Also, Ukraine said Russian shelling damaged structures at the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant, leading to risks of hydrogen leakage, radioactive emissions and fire. Russia said Ukraine was behind the shelling.

Aug. 6: A foreign-flagged cargo ship entered a Ukrainian port to receive grain for the first time since Russia's full-scale invasion began in late February, Ukraine's infrastructure minister said.

Aug. 7: Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said there's no possibility for talks with Moscow if referendums go forward on the future status of Russian-occupied parts of Ukraine, and warned that anyone who "helps the occupiers" to hold such a vote would be held accountable. He also said he met with American actress Jessica Chastain in Kyiv.

In-depth

In the "gray zone" outside Kherson, Ukraine's soldiers pay a terrible price.

These Ukrainian volunteers recover soldiers' remains to return them to their families.

Ukraine's wedding dress industry is alive and well, despite the war.

Amnesty International's report criticizing Ukraine is dividing the rights group.

A young officer hopes to turn the tide of war, as Ukraine fights to retake a key city.

The U.S. has sanctioned Vladimir Putin's long-rumored romantic partner.

Special report

Russia's war in Ukraine is changing the world: See its ripple effects in all corners of the globe.

Earlier developments

You can read past recaps here. For context and more in-depth stories, you can find more of NPR's coverage here. Also, listen and subscribe to NPR's State of Ukraine podcast for updates throughout the day.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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