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Ukraine and Russia: What you need to know right now

Aug 2 (Reuters) - Russia on Tuesday accused the United States of direct involvement in the Ukraine war while the first ship carrying Ukrainian grain to world markets since Moscow's invasion headed towards Lebanon without problems.

GRAIN/ECONOMY/DIPLOMACY

* The first ship carrying Ukrainian grain to world markets was sighted in the Black Sea off the coast of Turkey on Tuesday, a Reuters witness said, ahead of an inspection scheduled for Wednesday morning.

* Turkey expects roughly one grain ship to leave Ukrainian ports each day as long as an agreement that ensures safe passage holds, a senior Turkish official said on Tuesday.

* The United States on Tuesday imposed sanctions on Alina Kabaeva, a former Olympic gymnast the Treasury Department described as having a close relationship with President Vladimir Putin, as part of the latest U.S. response to Russia's Ukraine invasion.

* The G7 is looking at blocking the transportation of Russian oil among other options to deprive Moscow of bumper revenues amid its invasion of Ukraine, unless it heeds a price cap.

* The U.S. Commerce Department will add 25 Airbus airplanes operated by Russian airlines believed to violate U.S. export controls as part of the Biden administration's sanctions over the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the agency told Reuters.

FIGHTING

* Russia on Tuesday said that the United States was directly involved in the conflict in Ukraine because U.S. spies were approving and coordinating Ukrainian missile strikes on Russian forces.

* U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Monday called Russia's actions around Ukraine's largest nuclear power plant "the height of irresponsibility", accusing Moscow of using it as a "nuclear shield" in attacks on Ukrainian forces.

* Russia's top court on Tuesday designated Ukraine's Azov Regiment as a terrorist group, a Reuters correspondent in the courtroom said, paving the way for captured soldiers to be tried under stringent anti-terror laws and be jailed for up to 20 years.

* Russia said on Tuesday it had carried out deadly strikes against Ukrainian forces in Ukraine's southern Mykolaiv region and eastern Kharkiv. The defence ministry also said it destroyed seven ammo depots in the east and south of the country, including in Zaporizhzhia region.

* Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu said on Tuesday that Russia had destroyed six U.S.-made HIMARS missile systems since the beginning of the conflict in Ukraine, Interfax reported.

Reuters was not able to immediately verify battlefield reports.

* The number of border crossings from Ukraine has surpassed 10 million for the first time since Russia invaded the country, the UN Refugee Agency reported on Tuesday.

QUOTE

"She has forgotten what the city looks like, she is confused and does not know where to go, what to do, how to lie down, how to sleep, how to hide," said Natalya, 58, of her mother, Maria, 92, who for the past four months has lived underground in the Ukrainian city of Kharkiv with her daughter, son-in-law and the family cat. (Compiled by Nick Macfie)

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