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Ukraine shoots down Iran-made drone used by Russia

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Kyiv, Sep 14: The Ukrainian military has likely shot down an Iran-made drone used by Russia, the UK confirmed on Wednesday.

The Ukrainian side encountered the triangle, or delta-shaped drone known as the Shahed-136 near Kupiansk, a city in Kharkiv.

Ukraine shoots down Iran-made drone used by Russia

The military's Strategic Communications Directorate published images of the wreckage of the drone, that is believed to have a range of around 2,500 kilometers (1,550 miles) on Tuesday.

This information was corroborated by the latest UK military intelligence report that said that "Russia has highly likely deployed Iranian uncrewed aerial vehicles (UAV) in Ukraine for the first time" in the six-month war.

The intelligence report warned that this was a sign that "Russia is almost certainly increasingly sourcing weaponry from other heavily sanctioned states like Iran and North Korea" as it runs through its own dwindling stockpile.

Pope Francis urges end to Ukraine war during Kazakhstan tripPope Francis urges end to Ukraine war during Kazakhstan trip

In July, the US had cautioned that Iran was coming to Moscow's aid in Ukraine with hundreds of bomb-carrying drones.

Western sanctions have drawn both Russia and Iran closer. This comes even as Iran's nuclear deal with world powers hangs by a thread.

Here's a roundup of some of the other key developments regarding Russia's invasion of Ukraine on September 14.

Ukraine rushes to secure liberated regions

President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said in a Tuesday evening address that around 8,000 square km (3,100 square miles) have been liberated by Ukrainian forces so far this month and Ukraine is working to secure those regions. All of the reclaimed territory is in the Kharkiv region.

Zelenskyy said that in half the territory "stabilization measures" had been completed, and were ongoing in other areas.

Ever since the Kremlin withdrew from its main bastion in the northeast on Saturday, Ukrainian troops have made significant progress.

Their unprecedented counteroffensive has resulted in the recapture of dozens of towns.

The residents of these areas welcomed their forces with open arms.

"I was walking away ...when I saw an armored personnel carrier coming onto the square with a Ukrainian flag: my heart just tightened up and I began to sob," said Mariya Tymofiyeva, a 43-year-old resident of Balakliia, a crucial military supply hub.

Ukrainian forces are battling Russian military in the south and east as Kyiv goes on the offensive.

Meanwhile, US President Joe Biden said it was hard to tell if the Ukrainian counteroffensive gains are a turning point in fighting back the Russian invasion.

Ukraine pushes Russia into retreat in counteroffensive as war marks 200 daysUkraine pushes Russia into retreat in counteroffensive as war marks 200 days

"It's clear the Ukrainians have made significant progress. But I think it's going to be a long haul," he said.

Ukraine drafts post-war security guarantees

The Ukraine government on Tuesday highlighted the security guarantees it needs to ensure the sovereignty of the country post its war with Russia.

The plan was laid out by the administration in the presence of former NATO secretary general Anders Fogh Rasmussen in Kyiv.

It outlined the equipment and training required by Ukrainian military from its Western allies. The plan called for multiple European countries — as well as the US, Canada, Australia and Turkey — guarantee Ukraine's security. At the same time Ukraine said it would continue its efforts to join NATO.

Meanwhile, former Russian president Dmitry Medvedev warned that Ukraine's proposal, especially to join the NATO, would result in a "third world war."

Pope decries use of religion to justify war

Pope Francis on Wednesday said that religion must never be used to justify the "evils" of war, adding that God must never "be held hostage to the human thirst for power."

He was speaking at an interfaith conference in Kazakhstan, which included the Russian Orthodox hierarchy and other faith leaders.

Without mentioning Russia or Ukraine in his remarks the Pope called upon those present to unite in condemning war.

Among the attendees was Metropolitan Anthony, in charge of foreign relations for the Russian Orthodox Church, a firm backer of the Russia's invasion of Ukraine. The church leaders have called the war a "metaphysical" battle with the West.

Calling for peace the Pope said, "If the creator, to whom we have devoted our lives, is the author of human life, how can we who call ourselves believers consent to the destruction of that life?"

Source: DW

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