A Russian missile attack killed seven people in Lviv, the first civilian victims in the western city about 60 km from Poland as Ukraine on Monday said that Russia had started an anticipated new offensive in the east of the country. Ukrainian officials also said that Russian shelling killed another four people in the eastern Donetsk region on Monday, while a man and a woman were killed in Kharkiv, in the northeast, when shells hit a playground near a residential building. Here are the latest updates as the Russia-Ukraine War enters Day 55:
A Russian missile attack killed seven people in Lviv, the first civilian victims in the western city about 60 km from Poland as Ukraine on Monday said that Russia had started an anticipated new offensive in the east of the country. Ukrainian officials also said that Russian shelling killed another four people in the eastern Donetsk region on Monday, while a man and a woman were killed in Kharkiv, in the northeast, when shells hit a playground near a residential building.
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Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said Russian forces had begun the "Battle of Donbas" after senior officials said Moscow had begun a new offensive push along most of Ukraine's eastern flank. "A very large part of the entire Russian army is now focused on this offensive," Zelenskyy said in a video address, adding: "No matter how many Russian troops they send there, we will fight. We will defend ourselves."
Western capitals and Kyiv have accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of unprovoked aggression while Russia denied targeting civilians in what it called a special operation to demilitarise Ukraine and eradicate dangerous nationalists. It rejected what Ukraine called evidence of atrocities, saying Ukraine has staged them to undermine peace talks.
Here are today's highlights from the Russia-Ukraine War:
Kremlin critic Navalny says Russian soldiers killed Ukrainian who shares his name
Jailed Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny on Tuesday said Russian soldiers had killed a 60-year-old man called Ilya Navalny in the Ukrainian town of Bucha apparently just because he shared Navalny's last name. Russian forces retreated from Bucha last month and Ukrainian officials say they have discovered more than 400 bodies of people they believe were killed by Russian troops during their occupation of the area. The allegations, which Reuters has not been able to verify, triggered condemnation from the West and fierce denials from the Kremlin, which calls the allegations a "monstrous forgery" designed to denigrate the Russian army. Navalny shared a picture on Twitter of a passport with the name Ilya Ivanovich Navalny that he said appeared to have been deliberately left next to a dead body in Bucha.
German government working with industry to deliver weapons to Ukraine -Scholz
Germany will continue to support Ukraine militarily and financially although it has practically maxed-out the weapons it can deliver from its own stocks and is instead working with the armaments industry, Chancellor Olaf Scholz said on Tuesday. Among the weapons that military equipment makers said they could deliver quickly and that Ukraine needed were anti-tank and air defence weapons, Scholz told a news conference after participating in a call with Western allies. "We will provide the necessary money for the purchase," Scholz said. "The aim is to strengthen the Ukrainian military such that it can push back the Russian attack."
Britain to avoid some G20 meetings with Russia: UK source
British finance minister Rishi Sunak will boycott some G20 meetings in Washington this week if Russia attends, as part of diplomatic efforts to isolate Moscow over its invasion of Ukraine, a British government source said on Tuesday. United States officials said on Monday that Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen would skip some meetings of finance ministers from the G20 - a group of advanced and emerging economies - if Russian officials were present. Sunak, Britain's chancellor of the exchequer, plans to take the same approach, and will avoid secondary G20 meetings attended by Russian officials, a government source said. "The chancellor will attend the core G20 sessions ... and will continue working with our allies to call out Russian aggression, and push for stronger coordinated action to punish Russia and support Ukraine," the source said.
Russian operations in Ukraine "prelude" to bigger offensive
The United States sees ongoing Russian activity in eastern Ukraine as a prelude to a much larger offensive in the country, a senior U.S. defense official said on Tuesday. The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said Russia was still adding to its military capabilities to prepare for the new offensive, introducing an additional two battalion tactical groups (BTG) in the past 24 hours to bring to the total number of Russian BTGs in the country to 78.
British official predicts attrition war next in Ukraine
British officials say the next phase of the war in Ukraine is likely to be an attritional conflict that could last several months. A senior UK national security official briefed the Cabinet on Tuesday, as Russia ratcheted up its battle for control of the eastern Donbas region. Prime Minister Boris Johnson's spokesman said the official told ministers that Russia's greater number of troops was unlikely to be decisive on its own against fierce Ukrainian resistance. The official told Cabinet that there are signs Russia has not learned the lessons from previous setbacks in northern Ukraine, with evidence of troops being committed to the fight in a piecemeal fashion and some soldiers and units refusing to fight.
Russia Foreign Minister Lavrov: Operation is in new stage
Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov says that Moscow's campaign in Ukraine is entering a new stage. Lavrov said in an interview with Indian television broadcast on Tuesday that the operation is continuing, and another phase of this operation is starting now. Lavrov's statement follows Ukrainian statements that Russia on Monday launched an offensive in the country's eastern industrial heartland, Donbas. Moscow-backed separatists have been fighting Ukrainian forces for eight years in the mostly Russian-speaking region and have declared two independent republics that have been recognized by Moscow. Lavrov emphasized that the Russian operation is aimed at the full liberation of the Donetsk and Luhansk republics.
Russian forces seize city of Kreminna in eastern Ukraine: Regional governor
Russian forces have seized the city of Kreminna in eastern Ukraine and Ukrainian troops have withdrawn from the city, the regional governor said on Tuesday. Kreminna, a city of more than 18,000 people about 100 km (62 miles) southeast of the capital Kyiv, appears to be the first city captured in a new Russian offensive in eastern Ukraine. "Kreminna is under the control of the 'Orcs' (Russians). They have entered the city," Serhiy Gaidai, the governor of the Luhansk region, told a briefing. "Our defenders had to withdraw. They have entrenched themselves in new positions and continue to fight the Russian army. It is impossible to calculate the number of dead among the civilian population. We have official statistics - about 200 dead - but in reality there are many more, " he said, without making clear what period the estimated death toll covered.
Greece announces Russian oil tanker seized
Greek authorities say they have seized a Russian tanker in the Aegean Sea as part of European Union sanctions imposed against Russia. The Greek coast guard said the Russian-flagged Pegas, an oil tanker with 19 Russian crew members on board, was seized on April 15 and is currently anchored in the bay of Karystos, on the southern coast of the island of Evia. The coast guard said the seizure order concerned the ship itself, and not its cargo.
Russia tells Ukrainian forces to surrender Azovstal plant by noon
Russia on Tuesday called on Ukrainian forces and foreign fighters holed up in the Azovstal metallurgical plant in the Ukrainian port city of Mariupol to lay down their arms by noon Moscow time (0900 GMT) if they wanted to live. Mariupol, which has been encircled by Russian troops for weeks, has seen the fiercest fighting and most comprehensive destruction since Russia sent troops into Ukraine on Feb. 24.
Russian-backed separatists try to storm Azovstal plant in Mariupol - RIA
Russia-backed separatist forces are trying to storm the Azovstal metallurgical plant in the besieged Ukrainian port of Mariupol, the RIA news agency quoted separatist spokesperson Eduard Basurin as saying on Tuesday. The separatists aim to "liberate" the facility as quickly as possible, RIA quoted another separatist, Denis Pushilin, as saying.
Ukrainian Presidential adviser says new Russian offensive will fail, "They simply do not have enough strength"
New Zealand imposes new sanctions on Russian banks
New Zealand unveiled new sanctions on Tuesday targeting Russia’s largest banks and financial institutions, in its response to the invasion of Ukraine. "We are deeply concerned at the reports of brutality from Russian forces," Foreign Minister Nanaia Mahuta said in a statement after the measures were announced. "New Zealand continues to condemn Putin’s war and supports the International Criminal Court’s investigations into the atrocities committed against the citizens of Ukraine."
Russia focuses on Donetsk, Luhansk regionsThe Ukrainian military's General Staff said on Tuesday that Russian forces are focusing their efforts on taking full control over the Donetsk and Luhansk regions. It noted that a new phase of the war began Monday when the occupiers made an attempt to break through our defences along nearly the entire frontline in the Donetsk, Luhansk and Kharkiv regions. It said in a statement issued early Tuesday that the Russian military has continued to blockade and shell Mariupol and to deal missile strikes on other cities.
Russian official says Ukraine strikes village near border, one wounded
Ukrainian forces have struck a village near Russia's border with Ukraine, wounding one resident, the governor of the Russian province of Belgorod said on Tuesday. It was not immediately clear whether the strike on the village of Golovchino that figured in posts by governor Vyacheslav Gladkov on messaging app Telegram was carried out by artillery, mortars, missiles or was an aerial attack.
US seeks to seize superyacht in Fiji from suspected Russian owner
The United States is seeking to seize a superyacht suspected of belonging to a Russian oligarch that is docked in the Pacific island nation of Fiji, a restraining order filed on Tuesday by Fiji's director of public prosecutions showed. The luxury vessel the Amadea is widely believed to be owned by Russian oligarch Suleiman Kerimov, sanctioned by the United States and European Union. The vessel arrived in Fiji a week ago after leaving Mexico 18 days earlier and crossing the Pacific. Police are investigating.
Russians fight in streets of Ukrainian town
A Ukrainian military official said street battles have begun and evacuation is impossible in the town of Kreminna. That's one of only two spots where the Ukrainians said the Russians managed to break through on Monday along a front stretching for hundreds of miles. Luhansk regional military administrator Serhiy Haidai said the town came under heavy artillery overnight, setting seven residential buildings on fire, and that the Olympus sports complex where the nation's Olympic team trains was targeted.
Global finance ministers focus on war-driven food insecurity at IMF, World Bank meeting
Global finance leaders are putting the growing crisis over food insecurity, and skyrocketing food prices at centre stage as members of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank meet in Washington and grapple with the brutal effects of Russia’s war against Ukraine.
Yellen to see Ukraine PM, avoid Russians at global meeting
Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen plans to meet with Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal during this week's big meetings of global economic leaders in Washington but she'll be trying to avoid most contact with Russian officials who plan to attend some portions of the event virtually. This year's meetings run through Friday and include a mix of virtual and in-person events.
Ukraine says civilians killed in Lviv, new Russia push seen in east
Ukraine said a Russian missile attack killed seven people in Lviv on Monday, the first civilian victims in the western city, and reported signs that Russia had started its anticipated new offensive in the east. Maksym Kozytskyy, the governor of Lviv which lies 60 km (40 miles) from the Polish border, said preliminary reports suggested there were four strikes, three on warehouses that were not in use by the military and another on a car service station.
Mariupol says 40,000 deported from besieged city to Russian regions
The mayor of the besieged Ukrainian city of Mariupol on Monday said that about 40,000 civilians had been forcibly moved to Russia or Russian-controlled regions of Ukraine. "Unfortunately I have to declare that as of today they are forcibly deporting" residents, Vadym Boichenko told Ukrainian television. "We have verified through the municipal register that they have already deported over 40,000 people."
Ukraine rejects Serbian bomb threat claims on Russian flights
Ukraine on Monday rejected as baseless and false the accusations made by Serbia's president that Ukraine's secret service is behind a series of hoax bomb threats against Air Serbia flights to Russia. Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic has claimed that the foreign intelligence services of Ukraine and an unidentified European Union nation are doing that. The pro-Russian Serbian leader did not provide evidence for his claim. Other Serbian officials had alleged that the threatening bomb hoax emails have been sent to Serbia from either Ukraine or Poland.
US Treasury to focus on cracking down on Russian sanctions evaders
US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen this week will urge International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank members to increase pressure on Russia to end its "reckless war" in Ukraine, a senior Treasury official said on Monday. The Treasury Department will focus its efforts on cracking down on those seeking to evade sweeping sanctions imposed on Russia over the war, and those who facilitate such efforts, a second official said.
First Published: IST