The death toll continued to rise after the attack in the city of Kremenchuk. At least 15 people were killed, according to Poltava Region Governor Dmytro Lunin. More than 40 are currently still missing. Around 60 other people were injured.
The rocket hit the building on Monday afternoon. According to the Ukrainian Air Force, X-22 air-to-surface missiles were used in the attack.
Russia has been sharply condemned after the rocket attack on a shopping center in eastern Ukraine. The participants at the G7 summit in Elmau, Bavaria, spoke of a war crime and threatened Kremlin chief Vladimir Putin with the consequences.
“Indiscriminate attacks on innocent civilians are war crimes. Russian President Putin and those responsible will have to account for this,” emphasized the G7 summit on Monday evening. EU Council President Charles Michel spoke of a “terribly indiscriminate” Russian missile attack. French President Emmanuel Macron described the rocket attack as “absolute horror”. The UN Security Council plans to discuss the issue on Tuesday, according to diplomats in New York.
Zelenskyy described Russia after the attack as “the largest terrorist organization in the world”. That must also be determined legally. “And everyone in the world needs to know that if you buy or transport Russian oil, have contacts with Russian banks, or pay taxes or customs duties to the Russian state, it means giving money to terrorists,” Zelenskyy said.
The rating agency Moody’s has determined that Russia has defaulted on payments due to international investors not paying their debts on time. The US company announced on Monday evening (local time) in New York that it was specifically about interest payments on two government bonds that had not reached creditors even after a delay of 30 days.
It has been more than a hundred years since Russia last defaulted on its foreign debt. This time it is not a question of bankruptcy in the true sense. Russia’s treasury is well stocked, but the Kremlin is struggling to pay foreign debts because of Western sanctions over the war in Ukraine. According to the Interfax agency, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Monday that Moscow’s payments would be blocked because of sanctions “is not our problem”.
That will be important on Tuesday
On Tuesday, the UN Security Council will deal with the rocket attack on the shopping center in Kremenchuk. The meeting at 21:00 CEST was scheduled at the request of Ukraine. After the salvage work, there should be more clarity about the number of victims. The leading democratic economic powers end the G7 summit at Schloss Elmau in Bavaria with talks about the new world order after the Ukraine war. Russian President Putin is on a visit to Tajikistan in Central Asia.
There was initially no reaction from Moscow to the accusation that Russian troops were responsible for the rocket hit in Kremenchuk. According to the Ukrainian Air Force, the X-22 air-to-surface missiles were fired by long-range Tu-22 bombers from the Kursk region of Russia. In the immediate vicinity of the shopping center there are several industrial plants, including a factory for road construction machinery. According to the Ukrainian Security Council, a second missile hit a local sports stadium. According to the authorities, there were at least thirteen dead and dozens seriously injured.
“The occupiers fired rockets at a shopping center where there were more than a thousand civilians,” Zelenskyy wrote in the Telegram news service. He circulated a video showing the burning ruins and thick clouds of dark smoke. According to the civil defense, 115 firefighters with 20 According to local authorities, the fire was extinguished in the evening.
There was also a Russian attack on the eastern Ukrainian city of Lysychansk in the evening. According to Ukrainian sources, at least eight civilians were killed and 21 others injured. “The Russians fired at a crowd with Uragan multiple rocket launchers as civilians were fetching water from a cistern,” Luhansk region governor Serhiy Hajday told Telegram on Monday.
The fighting in Ukraine continues elsewhere. According to their own statements, the Ukrainian military repulsed Russian attacks west of Lyssychansk and thus prevented the strategically important city in the east of the country from being surrounded. The Ukrainian general staff said the enemy troops had suffered “significant losses”. The Russian military said more than 40 Ukrainian soldiers were killed in attacks on the Mykolayiv region in south-eastern Ukraine. Like so much information about the events of the war, this too could not be checked.
At the summit of the leading democratic economic powers in Elmau, images of the harsh reality of war quickly made the rounds. “This appalling attack shows once again the level of cruelty and barbarism the Russian head of state (Vladimir Putin) is capable of,” British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on the sidelines of the meeting hosted by Chancellor Olaf Scholz. The US government promised to “hold Russia accountable” for this.
At the same time, the G7 states pledged further support for Ukraine. Its President Zelenskyy, who was connected via video, welcomed the planned enactment of further sanctions against Moscow, with Kyiv particularly relying on a price cap for Russian oil exports.
According to the G7, which includes Germany, the USA, Canada, Great Britain, France, Italy and Japan, the focus of the new sanctions will be on the armaments industry and the technology sector. The heads of state and government also want to put a stop to Russia’s gold exports as a source of income for the war machine. The Kremlin announced that in this case it would open up new sales markets.
The statement by the G7 was flanked by a clear signal from NATO to Russia. One day before the start of the NATO summit in Madrid on Tuesday, Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg announced that the alliance would increase the number of its rapid reaction forces many times over – from around 40,000 to more than 300,000. To this end, the NATO intervention force NRF, which has been on alert for months due to tensions with Russia, should be rebuilt.
The military situation:
There was another heavy rocket attack on Monday night. Six people were injured in the Odessa region in southern Ukraine. The missile was fired by a Russian Tu-22 strategic bomber, the Ukrainian Defense Command South said on Monday.
After Russian troops captured the city of Sievjerodonetsk in eastern Ukraine, fighting for the city of Lysychansk continued. The enemy, with the support of artillery, is increasingly trying to block the strategically important city from the south, the Ukrainian general staff said on Sunday evening. Civil and military infrastructure were also hit. This could not be independently verified. According to Ukrainian information, there was also fighting on Snake Island in the Black Sea, which was conquered by Russia. Details were not initially available.
Another gas production platform in the Black Sea has been attacked. This was announced by representatives of the Crimean peninsula, which was incorporated by Russia, on Sunday evening, as reported by the Russian state agency TASS. They blamed Ukraine for the attack. That couldn’t be checked. There were no injuries, it said. It was unclear whether a fire broke out. Three oil rigs in the Black Sea were attacked with rockets on Monday. The originally Ukrainian facilities were occupied in March 2014 as part of the annexation of Crimea.
In eastern Ukraine, the nuclear research facility “Neutron Source” in Kharkiv came under fire again on Sunday. Buildings and infrastructure such as ventilation ducts were damaged, the nuclear regulatory authority said. The part of the facility where the nuclear fuel is stored was not mentioned. No increased radiation was found. Ukraine blamed Russia.
Political developments and voices:
Before his planned video link at the G7 summit at Schloss Elmau in Bavaria, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyj has again called for faster arms deliveries to his country. “We need powerful air defense – modern, fully effective,” he said in his daily video speech on Monday night. On Saturday alone, 62 Russian rockets hit his country. Meanwhile, the city of Lysychansk in eastern Ukraine remains fiercely contested.
Any delay in arms deliveries to Ukraine is an invitation to Russia to strike further, Zelensky said. The G7 countries, which include Germany, the US, Canada, the UK, France, Italy and Japan, collectively held so much potential “to stop Russian aggression against Ukraine and Europe,” Zelenskyy said. “There are already some agreements. Partners need to move faster.”
The Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksiy Reznikov specifically demanded modern long-range missile defense systems from the West. These would have to be stationed quickly in order to ensure security for European cities, he wrote on Facebook. He called rocket attacks on “peaceful Ukrainian cities” insidious because they were launched either from Russian territory, or from Belarus, or from the Caspian and Black Seas. Reznikov also proposed demilitarization of parts of Russia as a condition for resuming relations between Moscow and the West.
Russia has again tied negotiations with Ukraine to the condition that Kyiv accepts Moscow’s demands. This was said by the head of the Russian Federation Council, Valentina Matviyenko, as reported by the state agency TASS. Moscow’s publicly expressed demands at the beginning of the war included recognizing the eastern Ukrainian separatist areas of Donetsk and Luhansk as independent states and the annexed Black Sea peninsula of Crimea in 2014 as Russian state territory.
Zelenskyy called on the people of neighboring Belarus not to get drawn into the Russian war of aggression. “The Kremlin has already decided everything for you,” he said on Sunday with a view of Moscow. “But you are not slaves and cannon fodder. You must not die.” On Saturday, Belarusian ruler Alexander Lukashenko met with Russian President Vladimir Putin again. The Kremlin chief announced the delivery of Iskander-M missile systems to Belarus, which can also be equipped with nuclear warheads.
On the fringes of the G7 summit, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen spoke out against a boycott of the G20 summit in the fall – even if Putin were to attend the next meeting. “We have to think very carefully about whether we paralyze the entire G20, I’m not advocating it,” said von der Leyen from Bavaria to the ZDF “heute journal”. “In my opinion, the G20 is too important, also for the developing countries, the emerging countries, for us to let this body be destroyed again by Putin.”
The new commander of the Bundeswehr Operations Command, Bernd Schütt, sees the greatest danger of a military escalation with Russia on NATO’s north-eastern flank. “And that’s why the point of credible deterrence in this region is a very central point for me. The presence of land forces plays a central role here,” said the lieutenant general of the German Press Agency. There will also be increased exercises for national and alliance defense in his command. Schütt: “We have not yet trained this type of intensive warfare here. Existing structures and procedures need to be adapted.”
That will be important on Monday
The summit of the seven leading democratic industrial states at Schloss Elmau in the Bavarian Alps continues. President Zelenskyy is expected to speak to the participants via video link. The focus of the three-day meeting, which began on Sunday, is the war and its aftermath.
Also read: The Ukraine update of June 26 – Russia advances, plagues break out in Mariupol: What happened in the night