At the summit meeting of the Group of Twenty large industrialized and emerging countries (G20) in Indonesia on Tuesday, Ukraine is mobilizing international aid on a difficult humanitarian issue: It is about the kidnapping of Ukrainian children to Russia, which is prohibited under international law. At least 11,000 children whose names are known are affected, said President Volodymyr Zelenskyj in his evening video address. “But those are just the ones we know about. In fact, more have been kidnapped.”
Russia’s war against Ukraine is to be sharply condemned at the G20 summit. The West pushed through the war criticism in the final declaration against initial resistance from Moscow.
Specifically, the draft quotes a United Nations resolution calling on Russia to cease hostilities and immediately withdraw its troops from Ukraine. “Most members strongly condemned the war in Ukraine,” the draft reads. Russia accepted the draft, and also that the Russian attack should be clearly described as a war – and not – as suggested by Putin – as a “military special operation”.
According to “The Institute for the Study of War” (ISW), Russian military bloggers took the Kherson visit of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky as an opportunity to strongly criticize Russian military capacities. They complained that Zelenskyy was relatively free and carefree in Kherson – without fear of Russian attacks on his person – and questioned why the president was not the target of Russian forces. According to a well-known Russian milblogger, this fact shows that Russia does not want to win the war. It is incomprehensible that the Russian army would have allowed Selenskyj to enter “Russian territory”.
After the recapture of the city of Cherson by Ukraine, the US Department of Defense expects Russian troops to entrench themselves on the opposite east bank of the Dnipro River. Tens of thousands of Russian soldiers are on the east side of the river, a senior Pentagon official stressed on Monday. “Our current assessment is that they intend to keep this territory under their control.” There is currently no evidence that Ukrainian units have crossed the river. On the east bank, the Russians hold most of the Kherson region.
The Russian Defense Ministry has escalated its claims of alleged Russian territorial gains in Donetsk Oblast – presumably to distract from the defeat in Kherson Oblast. Putin’s army captured the villages of Pavlivka near the city of Donetsk and Mayorsk near the city of Bakhmut. Russia had not made any claims to territorial gains for weeks. After withdrawing from the northwest of the Cherson region, Moscow now wants to intensify its offensive in Donetsk Oblast, especially around Bakhmut, Donetsk and in the western Donetsk region. In this context, the Russian armed forces will also conquer other areas in the next few weeks according to the “ISW”. However, these gains will have no operational significance.
The UN General Assembly passed a resolution on Monday that is intended to lay a basis for future reparations from Russia to Ukraine. In New York, 94 countries voted in favor of the resolution, giving the necessary two-thirds majority. 73 countries abstained, 14 voted against – in addition to Russia, including China, Iran and Cuba. In the text, Ukraine is asked to document information about war damage in a kind of register. “The reparations that Russia has to pay for its actions are now part of international legal reality,” said Zelenskyy.
That will be important on Tuesday
Russia’s war against Ukraine is also an important topic at the G20 summit on the Indonesian island of Bali. According to a Western diplomat, it could go so far that Moscow would accept a passage condemning the war in the final declaration. Russian President Vladimir Putin is being represented in Bali by Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.
Also Read: The Ukraine Update of November 14th