In eastern Ukraine, the warring parties accuse each other of killing civilians, and people are being called on to flee. An overview of what happened during the night and a view of the day.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyj sees western weapon systems as a powerful reinforcement of the Ukrainian army in the war against Russia.
With accurate artillery, Ukraine is destroying depots and other targets that are important for Russian logistics, Zelenskyy said in a video message on Wednesday. «And this significantly reduces the offensive potential of the Russian army. The casualties of the occupiers will increase every week,” he said. Thursday marks the 134th day of war in Ukraine since the Russian invasion began in late February.
Zelenskyj speaks of rocket attack on university
Zelenskyy accused Russia of a rocket attack on the pedagogical university in the second largest city of Kharkiv. “That characterizes the Russian invasion with 100 percent accuracy. In defining what barbarism is, this punch is the most appropriate.” Only an “enemy of civilization and humanity” could fire rockets at a pedagogical university. No occupier will get away with it unpunished, Zelenskyy asserted. «Every Russian murderer and rapist who has entered our country will be held accountable. And it doesn’t matter how long it takes to complete this task.” Ukraine will restore everything.
Ukraine: Russia continues to fight for control of Luhansk
According to information from Kyiv, Russian troops are still fighting for complete control of the already largely conquered Luhansk region in eastern Ukraine. To this end, the Russians have relocated some of their units, the Ukrainian general staff announced on Thursday.
Luhansk governor Serhiy Hajday had previously stated that even after the fall of the strategically important city of Lysychansk, fighting would continue in the outskirts. Moscow, on the other hand, has been saying for days that its own troops have taken complete control of Luhansk.
The Ukrainian General Staff also reported further Russian attacks in the neighboring Donetsk region. Around the cities of Kramatorsk and Bakhmut, several settlements were shelled with artillery, it said. Two rocket attacks were also reported from the southern Ukrainian region of Odessa during the night.
The Russian military also reported several attacks in the Mykolayiv region in southern Ukraine. Two Ukrainian fighter jets and a Ukrainian army training camp were destroyed there, said Defense Ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov in Moscow. This could not initially be checked independently.
Civilians should flee
Against this background, the authorities in the Donetsk region are calling on the civilian population to flee. “Russia has turned the entire Donetsk region into a dangerous hotspot, including for civilians,” Governor Pavlo Kyrylenko said. Sloviansk Mayor Vadym Lyakh announced that civilians would be taken to the west of the country by bus and train. “Don’t take any risks! Pack up!” Ljach appealed. A total of 17 people have been killed and 67 injured since the fighting began in Sloviansk.
Both sides report shelling
Meanwhile, both warring parties blamed each other for the dead and injured in new attacks. The pro-Russian separatists in the Donetsk region accused the Ukrainian army of shelling killing six people, including three children. 19 people were injured. For its part, Ukraine accused the Russian army of shelling several locations. Three people were killed in the Donetsk region. The information could not be independently verified.
Telephone calls before meeting of G20 foreign ministers
Before the meeting of the G20 foreign ministers on Thursday in Bali, the Ukrainian head of department Dmytro Kuleba called Federal Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock (Greens). “We will not leave the stage of the meeting in Indonesia to Russia, and we will continue to give strong support to Ukraine,” the Foreign Office said on Twitter. Kuleba also spoke to his US counterpart Antony Blinken. “We have coordinated steps to expedite shipments of heavy weapons from the United States and other partners,” Kuleba said.
That will be important on Thursday
The foreign ministers of the G20 meet in Indonesia. Minister Baerbock is there for Germany. It is eagerly awaited how Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov will be received. In Moscow, Russian President Vladimir Putin meets the leadership of the State Duma and the faction leaders there in the Kremlin.