Putin, Erdogan Relationship is One of Trust as Leaders Meet in Sochi

What follows is NewsGuard's summary and translation of top news stories from Russia's state TV Channel One. NewsGuard presents these stories in the order that they appear on the program.

Negotiations between Putin, Erdoğan take place in Sochi

These are negotiations that the whole world has been following closely. Vladimir Putin received Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in Sochi. The presidents of Russia and Turkey meet quite often. The relationship between the two leaders is one of trust, and the countries are very close and neighborly in business terms—something that was particularly emphasized during the talks.

Russia and Turkey are connected by many projects, including in the energy sphere. Take, for example, the nuclear power plant being built by our specialists on the Mediterranean coast, or the Turkish Stream gas pipeline—the most important route for supplying Europe with Russian gas.

If Moscow and Ankara take up something together, they can solve the most difficult problems. With Turkey's mediation, a package of documents was signed on supplying our foodstuffs and fertilizers to the international market, as well as on exporting Ukrainian grain. Cooperation between the two countries is a guarantee of regional stability. And the time has come to open a new page in relations, as President Erdoğan put it.

Putin, Erdogan Meet in Sochi
Russian President Vladimir Putin meets with Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Tehran on July 19, 2022. Iran's president hosted his Russian and Turkish counterparts for talks on the Syrian war in a three-way summit overshadowed by fallout from the Russian invasion of Ukraine. (Photo by SERGEI SAVOSTYANOV/SPUTNIK/AFP via Getty Images)

Russian army, people's republics units work to liberate towns of Donbas

Donetsk, Gorlovka, Yasenovaya, Makeyevka—these and many other towns in the region have come under intense fire all week. Ukrainian nationalists have been hitting them with an inhuman ferocity with whatever they can: old Soviet weapons, new NATO howitzers, and even American HIMARS.

The Ukrainian armed forces fired a missile at an apartment block in Alchevsk. One person was killed and 19 were injured, including children. Hospitals were hit, as well as a maternity ward, schools, hotels, a theater where a farewell ceremony was being held—and even the Donetsk railway station building, which burned down after the shelling.

The Ukrainian army is literally filling towns with "petals"—anti-personnel mines that have long been banned. And all of this causes a real Ukrainian terror among the civilian population of the Donbas, who are dying because of the powerless anger of the Nazis. The Ukrainian forces are simply taking revenge on ordinary people for their defeats on the battlefield.

The Russian army and units of the people's republics are liberating one town after another. Fighting is already taking place on the outskirts of Avdeevka. Peski is fully under the control of the combined forces; the clearing of Marinka continues, and assault units have entered Artemovsk. And all this against a background of very effective work by our air force, rocket launchers, and artillery. The Defense Ministry reported the destruction of 300 nationalists in Kharkov, Artemovsk and Dzerzhinsk.

First Channel camera crews are working on the front lines.

Putin awards title of Hero of Russia posthumously to Olga Kachura

The shelling of Donetsk was particularly heavy on Thursday morning, while a farewell ceremony for Olga Kachura, a colonel in the army of the Donetsk People's Republic and hero of the Donbas armed forces, was beginning inside the city's theater.

The Ukrainian army knew that there would probably be a lot of people in attendance, including the republic's leadership. "Corsa"—that was Kachura's call sign—was one of the original members of the Donetsk People's Republic's military unit, and she had been on the front line since 2014. She was commander of the artillery rocket battalion. She was born and raised in Donetsk in a military family. She served in the Ministry of Internal Affairs. And when it was time to defend our Donbas, she did not hesitate for a minute.

The car Corsa was traveling in came under fire on the Gorlovka-Yasenovaya highway. Two people were killed and two others were wounded. Kachura was posthumously awarded the title of Hero of Russia for her courage in the performance of her military duty. The decree was signed by Putin. She was previously awarded the title of Hero of the Donetsk People's Republic.

Russian servicemen risking their lives for peace in Donbas

Sergeant Rashid Askarov is a BMP gunner. His subordinates captured a militant stronghold and eliminated a large concentration of nationalists and their equipment.

The group, under the command of Lieutenant Alexander Naumov, defeated a detachment of saboteurs who were preparing a provocation against our military. Alexander was wounded but did not leave the battlefield.

A soldier named Denis Drobin, a grenade launcher, firmly held the defense of an important line. He destroyed the radicals, then stayed in position even when he was hit by shrapnel.

Kiev regime continuing terrorist attempts to provoke nuclear catastrophe

Nationalists struck at the Zaporozhye power station again this week. This time they used large-caliber artillery. As a result, part of the third power-generating unit was de-energized and the capacity of the fourth unit was reduced. In addition, a pipeline at the hydrogen plant was damaged and a fire broke out. This was quickly extinguished. It was only by sheer luck that a larger fire was avoided, as well as a possible radiation accident at Europe's biggest nuclear power plant.

A little earlier, Ukraine admitted that they are coordinating their strikes with the Pentagon. We are talking about the use of HIMARS missile systems. Vadim Skibitsky, a representative of the main Ukrainian intelligence directorate, said that each target is corrected and approved by U.S. officers. And since this is the case, the U.S. is already directly involved in combat operations in Ukraine.

And this also means that the strike on the detention center in Yelenovka, where Azov prisoners had been held, was also approved in Washington. That is to say, it gave Ukrainians permission to kill other Ukrainians, their own people. These same nationalists are the ones they considered to be heroes of Azovstal—only dead heroes, because Kiev does not need them alive.

Military Aid to Ukraine
A man trains to assemble/disassemble weapons with help of instructor on July 8, 2022, in Kyiv, Ukraine. About 100 managers of the Regional State Administration have participated in the first tactical defense training for civilians held in Kyiv. (Photo by Oleksii Samsonov/Global Images Ukraine via Getty Images)

About 70 percent of military assistance to Ukraine does not reach army

A documentary was broadcast on the American channel CBS about where the weapons that the West is so actively pumping into Kiev are actually going. Journalists conducted an investigation and found out that about 70 percent of the military aid sent by the U.S. and Europe never reaches the Ukrainian armed forces.

So the question is, where are these weapons? Some of it ends up on the black market. There is no knowing whose hands it will end up in, and most importantly, against whom it will be used.

Roger Waters has called Biden war criminal for escalating the war in Ukraine

Sensible people in the West have no problem figuring out what is really going on in the world. The founder of the legendary British rock band Pink Floyd, Roger Waters, said that U.S. President Joe Biden was to blame for the situation in Ukraine. This was discussed in an interview with CNN. The discussion included Waters' recent concert, during which a portrait of the head of the White House was shown on screen among people the musician considers war criminals.

Roger Waters told CNN: "President Biden? Well, he's fueling the fire in the Ukraine, for a start—that is a huge crime. Why won't the United States of America encourage Zelensky to negotiate? This war is basically about the action and reaction of NATO pushing right up to the Russian border, which they promised they wouldn't do when Gorbachev negotiated the withdrawal of the USSR from the whole of Eastern Europe.

"I would suggest that you...go away and read a bit more, and try to figure out what the U.S. would do if the Chinese were putting nuclear armed missiles into Mexico and Canada."

Attempts to reduce dependence on Russian gas meeting more resistance

There is no guarantee that Europe will have enough gas for everyone this winter. Head of EU diplomacy Josep Borrell said as much this week, noting that it was also unclear whether ordinary Europeans would be able to pay their bills. Western leaders in the race to think up the biggest amount of anti-Russian sanctions have forgotten what matters most—their own citizens.

Cold weather is ahead and it is not clear how people will survive without our gas. In Germany, for example, to avoid being completely without 'blue fuel' in winter, people were advised to reduce their electricity consumption by 20 percent. And there is also the continuation of the story with the turbine of Nord Stream and the forced reduction in supplies. And on top of that, an EU embargo on the purchase of Russian coal will come into effect as early as next week.

Russia will continue to defend its national interests

This week, Putin signed a decree on special economic measures in the financial and fuel and energy sectors. Representatives of a number of states are banned until the end of the year from dealing in shares in companies and banks strategically important to Russia, as well as from owning stakes, rights and liabilities in two major oil and gas projects: Sakhalin-1 and the Kharyaga field.

Plan for developing Mariupol in next few years has been developed

Putin has set out another task to ensure that Donbas residents can spend the winter in normal conditions. More construction workers will be sent to Mariupol, which has been liberated from Ukrainian nationalists. Thirty-thousand people will rebuild the city.

By the end of the year, almost 100 hospitals and schools will be built or repaired, the railway station and port will be opened, tram lines will run again, and five bridges will be opened. As a result, the city will get a new, modern look, and it will also expand. Similar plans are being prepared for other towns.