Russia intensifies attack on Donbas region of Ukraine

intensified its attacks on Ukrainian forces in eastern on Tuesday, trying to occupy the Donbas region exactly three months after President Vladimir Putin ordered his troops to invade Ukraine in hopes of quickly taking over the entire country and overthrowing its government.

The fighting focused on the Ukrainian cities of Sievierodonetsk on the east bank of the river Siverskyi Donets and its twin, Lysychansk, on the west bank, with Russian forces advancing from three directions to surround them.

Serhiy Gaidai, the Ukrainian governor of Luhansk province, said: ‘The intensity of the fire on Sievierodonetsk has increased several times; they are simply destroying the city, he said. About 15,000 people live there.

FILE - Vehicles on fire at an oil depot after missiles hit the facility in an area controlled by Russian-backed separatist forces in Makiivka, 15 km (94 miles) east of Donetsk, eastern Ukraine, on May 4, 2022. FILE - Vehicles on fire at an oil depot after missiles hit the facility in an area controlled by Russian-backed separatist forces in Makiivka, 15 km (94 miles) east of Donetsk, eastern Ukraine, on May 4, 2022.

Latest developments in Ukraine: 24 May

Britain’s defense minister warned of the importance of fighting in the region, saying: “If Russia conquers the Severodonetsk pocket, the whole of Luhansk Oblast would fall under Russian occupation.

In his latest speech tonight, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said on Monday: “The coming weeks of the war will be difficult, and we must be aware of that,” pointing out the fighting in the Donbas region.

But as the war enters its fourth month, with no end in sight, Moscow has failed to overthrow Zelensky’s government or conquer the capital Kyiv, and the US-dominated NATO, with and Sweden set to join the alliance, has agreed against Putin’s attack on Russia’s neighbor, once a Soviet satellite state but an independent nation since 1991.

Instead, Moscow is focusing its efforts on the Donbas and along the southern coast of Ukraine. Russia has conquered the port city of Mariupol along the northern shore of the Sea of ​​Azov and more than 1,700 Ukrainian troops in the Azovstal steelworks capitulated to Russia, Moscow’s greatest success during the war.

Now, however, a certain semblance of normal life is returning to parts of Ukraine as well. In Kharkiv, the country’s second largest city, the underground metro reopened after thousands of Ukrainians had taken refuge there during large parts of the war. Ukrainian forces have largely expelled Russian troops from the range of the artillery in Kharkiv.

But with fighting raging in the Donbas, Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba on Tuesday called on other governments to send more weapons faster to help Ukraine’s fight against Russian forces.

“It is too early to conclude that Ukraine already has all the weapons it needs,” Kuleba tweeted. “The Russian offensive in the Donbas is a ruthless battle, the largest on European soil since World War II. I urge partners to speed up the supply of weapons and ammunition,”

Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin talks to reporters after a virtual meeting with Ukraine's Defense Contact Group at the Pentagon on May 23, 2022 in Washington. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin talks to reporters after a virtual meeting with Ukraine's Defense Contact Group at the Pentagon on May 23, 2022 in Washington.

Pentagon chief: 20 countries send new security aid to Ukraine

Kuleba’s call for more military aid came a day after US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin said that some 20 countries were sending new security aid packages to Ukraine.

“Many countries donate critically needed artillery ammunition, coastal defense systems, tanks and other armored vehicles. Others came up with new commitments to train Ukraine’s forces and maintain its military system,” Austin told Pentagon reporters after concluding the second meeting in Ukraine. Ukraine’s Defense Contact Group.

Denmark said it would provide Ukrainian forces with a Harpoon rifle and missiles, while the Czech Republic donated attack helicopters, tanks and rocket systems.

Monday’s meeting included 47 nations that participated in practice, according to Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman General Mark Milley, the United States’ top military officer. , Colombia and Ireland were among the new entrants.

The group’s next meeting will be held on June 15 in .

“Everyone here understands the efforts of this war, and they extend far beyond Europe,” Austin said.

US President made a similar statement on Tuesday when he met with the leaders of Japan, India and , and told the group that the conflict in Ukraine “is more than just a European issue, it is a global issue.”

Biden quoted the widespread effects of the conflict, including on global food supplies, and promised ongoing US support, saying, “as long as Russia continues the war, the United States will work with our partners to help be the global response, as it will to go. to influence all parts of the world. “

Finnish Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto said Finland and Sweden would send delegations to Ankara for talks with Turkish officials on Wednesday on their applications to join NATO’s military alliance.

has expressed opposition to the bids and accuses Sweden and Finland of harboring people affiliated with the militant group Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) and supporters of the US-based Muslim priest Fethullah Gulen, who Turkey says orchestrated a 2016 coup attempt.

All new NATO members must be approved by all 30 of the Alliance’s current members.

“We understand that Turkey has some of its own security problems against terrorism … We believe that these issues can be resolved,” Haavisto told the in Davos. “There may also be some issues that are not directly linked to Finland and Sweden but more to other NATO members.”

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, who also spoke on Tuesday in Davos, said he was convinced that all Allies’ concerns would be addressed and that Finland and Sweden would be welcomed into the alliance.

“The decision of Finland and Sweden to apply for NATO membership is historic,” said Stoltenberg. “It shows that European security will not be dictated by violence and threats. All allies agree that NATO enlargement has been a great success and have spread freedom and democracy across Europe.”

The NATO leader highlighted demands made by Putin before the invasion, including a guarantee that NATO would not expand.

He wanted less NATO at its borders and started a war. Now he gets more NATO at its borders and more members, Stoltenberg said.

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Source: sn.dk

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