The situation in eastern Ukraine is becoming ever more precarious for the Ukrainian army. Pro-Russian separatists report successes in the east. The city of Sievjerodonetsk is almost surrounded. What happened today in the war in Ukraine.
Thanks to the massive use of artillery and air force in the Donbass region in eastern Ukraine, Russian forces have made faster progress in the past few days than in the previous weeks. According to their own statements, the pro-Russian separatists gained control of the city of Lyman in the Donetsk region. The Ukrainian General Staff, on the other hand, reported fighting for the city on Friday evening. However, the Ukrainian presidential adviser Olexy Arestovych had already described the strategically important town as lost on television the evening before.
Lyman is located to the west of the metropolitan area around the cities of Sievjerodonetsk and Lyssychansk, which is still controlled by Ukrainian troops. Russian forces have been trying to storm this area for weeks. With the fall of Lyman, supplying the Ukrainian military in the area has become more difficult.
According to the local military administration, Sievjerodonetsk in the Luhansk region is already two-thirds besieged by Russian troops, but is not yet completely surrounded, said the head of the local military administration, Olexandr Strjuk. The defenders continued to put up fierce resistance. On the other hand, according to the Moscow state news agency Ria Novosti, the pro-Russian separatists claimed that the ring was completely closed around the city.
According to Strjuk, around 90 percent of the buildings in the city are damaged, and 60 percent would have to be completely rebuilt. He had previously announced that around 1,500 soldiers and civilians had been killed in Sievjerodonetsk since the beginning of the war. Many people have fled. Of the once 130,000 inhabitants, only around a tenth is now there.
According to a local politician, dozens more bodies have been found in the port city of Mariupol, which has now been taken by Russian troops. Rescue workers discovered a total of around 70 lifeless bodies on a former factory site, city council deputy Petro Andryushchenko wrote in the Telegram news service. People were buried under the rubble when Russian occupiers shelled the building, he wrote. This information could not initially be verified. Mariupol has become a symbol of the brutality of Russia’s war of aggression.
The federal government wants to support Ukraine, which was attacked by Russia, in the reconstruction with emergency aid in the millions. Development Minister Svenja Schulze said on Friday in the heavily damaged Kiev suburb of Borodjanka that aid should not wait until the war is over.
Schulze told journalists in Borodjanka that 185 million euros for emergency aid measures had already been approved. Specifically, apartments and power lines are to be built. “Ukrainians simply need water and electricity. Those who have fled within Ukraine need a roof over their heads, the children need to be able to go back to school, and support is needed for all of this,” said Schulze. Germany will remain a partner in the years to come. “But we must not wait until the war is over, we must start helping and building again now.”
Precarious situation for the Ukrainians in the east of the country
The Ukrainian army is under severe pressure in the far east of its front. The situation in the Donbass at a glance:
Read here what new attack strategy Russia is using in the Donbass: Territorial gains in the Donbass – military experts dissect Russian strategy change: “No breakthrough so far”
In view of the massive Russian attacks in the east, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy fears that the Donbass will be largely depopulated. With their superior firepower, the attacking Russian troops put pressure on the Ukrainian defenders around the city of Sieverodonetsk on Thursday.
“The ongoing offensive of the occupiers in the Donbass could desert the region,” said Zelenskyj. Cities were being destroyed, people killed or kidnapped, he said. He saw this as “an obvious policy of genocide”. In his evening video address in Kyiv He also explained: “The ongoing offensive by the occupying forces in the Donbass could make the region deserted. Cities would be destroyed, people killed or kidnapped. Friday is the 93rd day of the war.
According to a media report, the US government is considering sending advanced long-range missile systems to Ukraine. The US-made weapon systems could fire missiles hundreds of kilometers away, CNN reported on Thursday, citing several officials.
A new military aid package could be announced as early as next week. Ukraine asked for these types of weapons, it said. However, the US government has been hesitant because of fears that Ukraine could use the missile systems for attacks on Russian territory. The question arises whether this could lead to a Russian retaliation, according to CNN.
Against the background of the Russian war of aggression against Ukraine, a large multinational maneuver will take place in the Baltic Sea region under the leadership of the USA. In addition to 14 NATO countries such as Germany, the partner countries Sweden and Finland would also take part in the annual maritime exercise “Baltops 22”, said the spokesman for the US Department of Defense, John Kirby, on Thursday (local time) in Washington.
Sweden is the host of the maneuver this year, which is planned from June 5th to 17th. Sweden and Finland have applied for NATO membership because of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. The maneuver has been taking place regularly in the Baltic Sea region since 1972.
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