Russia plans to raise the assassination of Darya Dugina at a United Nations Security Council (UNSC) emergency meeting set for Tuesday. The session is expected to focus on the ongoing crisis and standoff at the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power station, which has come under fresh shelling that damaged transformers at the site, which Ukraine has blamed on Russia. There's growing alarm of a 'Chernobyl-like' catastrophic event.
Russia's deputy ambassador to the UN, Dmitry Polyanskiy, confirmed that Russia is seeking the UNSC emergency session, but said Russia will also highlight and condemn this latest in a series of "Ukrainian provocations" targeting civilians on Russian territory - after on Monday the FSB (Federal Security Service) claimed to have identified a Ukrainian operative behind the Dugin car bombing.
"We requested an urgent meeting on Zaporozhye, where Ukrainian provocations do not stop. Of course, we will talk about this episode [the murder of Daria Dugina]," Nebenzia said, as cited in Russian media sources. "This demonstrates the nature of the Ukrainian state, because the connection between their saboteurs and this murder is obvious, which, in fact, has already been disclosed by the FSB."
Interestingly, US mainstream media pundits are already widely amplifying a theory that says Dugina's killing was essentially an "inside job". But it remains that there's little in the way of hard proof for any of the currently competing claims and counterclaims:
FRANCE 24’s Russia correspondent Nick Holdsworth examines the FSB’s claim that the attack on Darya Dugina was carried out by a Ukrainian woman identified as Natalia Vovk.
"The FSB hasn’t presented any physical proof," of its claims, explains Holdsworth. "This is an unusually quick result."
Addressing Russian claims that the Ukrainian secret services were responsible for the car bombing, Holdsworth says the attack "doesn’t really carry the modus operandi of Ukrainian special services", noting that the Ukrainians are concentrating on cutting Russian supply lines in the Crimea and eastern Ukraine.
As for Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant, the situation remains highly dangerous. Starting two days ago, President Putin signaled support for a UN-IAEA team to be dispatched to inspect the complex at a moment both warring sides have blamed the other for strikes on the plan.
Yet, so far no concrete action has been taken, though likely there are ongoing negotiations between Russia and the UN monitoring organization. Some 500 Russian troops have occupied it since March.
FSB claims they've solved the assassination of Darya Dugina, here's what they're saying: pic.twitter.com/iM6LPPQ1Ut— Russians With Attitude (@RWApodcast) August 22, 2022
The White House in unison with Western allies have since Sunday called on--
..."the need to avoid military operations near the plant" and the importance of a visit by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) "as soon as feasible to ascertain the state of safety systems."
We can expect full fireworks of hardline accusations to fly at Tuesday's UNSC emergency session, also with stepped up Ukrainian attacks on Crimea looming large in the background, as well as the ongoing huge US-supplied arms flow into the conflict. But there are high hopes that sending an IAEA team to Zaporizhzhia could materialize as a result of the UNSC emergency session.
Further, a Monday evening report in Reuters cites US intelligence alleging that Russia is preparing major strikes on Ukraine's infrastructure in the "coming days".