New York The situation for people in many cities in Ukraine is becoming increasingly dramatic 13 days after the Russian invasion. According to the city council, in the port city of Mariupol, which is under Russian siege, “there is no street without broken windows, destroyed apartments or houses.”
The city is without electricity, water and gas. Mariupol is located near the so-called line of contact between pro-Russian separatists and the Ukrainian army in the Donetsk administrative region and is therefore of great strategic importance.
According to local authorities, more than ten people were killed in airstrikes on the north-eastern Ukrainian city of Sumy. “In some towns, residential buildings were bombed. And almost in the center of Sumy several houses were destroyed by a bomb hit,” said the head of the regional administration Dmitro Shyvytsky. There were also airstrikes in numerous other cities in the east of the country and around Kyiv. The information was not independently verified.
An escape corridor for civilians from the city of Sumy is to be opened from 09.00 CET. This is announced by the Ukrainian government. So far, several attempts to establish escape routes from embattled cities have failed.
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According to its UN ambassador, Russia had previously offered another ceasefire to open humanitarian corridors for Tuesday. Vasily Nebensia told the UN Security Council that humanitarian corridors in Kyiv, Chernihiv, Sumy, Kharkiv and Mariupol should be opened in the morning.
As with the offer the day before, the Russian Ministry of Defense spoke of a subsequent transport to Russia. The Ukrainian US Ambassador Serhiy Kyslytsia accused Russia of undermining the new attempt with routes only via Russia and Belarus. Nebenzya said evacuations towards Ukrainian cities west of Kyiv are also being offered.
>> Read here the current developments in the Ukraine war in our news blog
The military situation
Russian troops are said to have continued to launch heavy attacks on Ukrainian cities and civilian infrastructure on Monday. Russia has captured five settlements on the border of Donetsk and Zaporizhia Oblasts, the Defense Ministry said in Moscow.
The residents of the towns “will be given humanitarian aid,” it said. In addition, fighter jets and bombers destroyed 26 other military objects, the ministry said. These include two command posts, a radar station and five ammunition depots. Russia insists the troops are not attacking civilian targets, only military ones.
According to the Ukrainian military intelligence service, a Russian general was killed in fighting for the second largest Ukrainian city of Kharkiv. Accordingly, it is Major General Vitaly Gerasimov.
The 45-year-old fought with Russian troops in Syria and Chechnya and took part in the occupation of Crimea in 2014, it said. Russia initially did not comment. The information was not independently verified.
According to their own statements, the Ukrainian armed forces inflicted heavy losses on the attackers. Some Russian units lost up to 50 percent of their personnel in battles for Konotop and Ochtyrka in the north-east of the country. “The moral and psychological state of the enemy remains extremely low,” the General Staff claimed in Kyiv.
Russian soldiers would desert in droves. The General Staff accused the Russian troops of flying even heavier airstrikes on Ukrainian cities. The information provided by the two warring parties could not be independently verified.
Ukraine: billions in damage to transport infrastructure
Ukraine’s infrastructure minister, Alexander Kubrakov, has estimated the damage to the country’s transport system from the Russian invasion at more than $10 billion so far.
Bridges, railways and airports are affected, he said, according to the online newspaper Ukrajinska Prawda. He is convinced that most of the damage could be repaired in two years at the latest.
Kubrakow probably also counts on foreign aid. “This war is not ours,” he said. Ukraine defends the interests of the entire civilized world. “We will not restore the country on our own.”
>> Read about this: 1.5 million people flee Ukraine – Europe’s biggest refugee tragedy since 1945
Zelensky: “I’ll stay in Kyiv”
Despite the fighting in Kyiv, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky does not want to leave the capital. “I’m staying in Kyiv,” he said in a video message released Monday night.
He does not hide and is not afraid of anyone. Talks will continue with Russia, said Zelensky. “We will insist on negotiations until we find a way to say to our people: This is how we come to peace.” Every day of fighting creates “better conditions” for Ukraine. “A strong position. To secure our future. After this war.”
Here you can find more Handelsblatt articles on the subject:
Russia threatens to stop gas supplies via Nord Stream 1
For the first time, Russia is openly threatening to stop gas deliveries through the Nord Stream 1 pipeline in the Baltic Sea. said Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Nowak in a speech broadcast on Monday evening.
He was referring to the stopped Nord Stream 2 line, which Russia is aiming to put into operation. “But we’re not making that decision yet. Nobody wins,” said Nowak.
Foreign Minister of Ukraine confirms planned meeting with Lavrov
Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmitro Kuleba confirmed the plan for talks with his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov soon. “Currently the 10th (March) is planned,” he said in a video message.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu had previously said both sides were expected in Antalya on March 10. Kuleba said that if Lavrov is ready for a serious talk, they will talk about diplomat and diplomat. “If he starts repeating the absurd propaganda that has been dished out lately, I’ll give him the hard truth he deserves.”
US Democrats prepare billions in aid package for Ukraine
US Senate Democrats are preparing a more than $12 billion humanitarian and military assistance package for Ukraine.
The funds would benefit refugees and displaced persons, as well as medical care, food security and arms transfers to Ukraine, said Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer. The package should be decided later this week as part of the budget.
World Bank unveils over $700 million aid package to Ukraine
The World Bank approved a package to help Ukraine that should bring the country $723 million (€665 million) in new loans and aid. The World Bank said the quick payout will help the government fund welfare payments and pay health care workers and pensions. This is just “the first of many steps” to help Ukraine.
With agency material.
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