Ukraine Daily - Sunday, 13 March 2022

Russian troops were ordered to shoot at civilians in Kharkiv -- Lithuania to become Putin’s next target if Russia wins the war against Ukraine -- Moscow Stock Exchange to remain closed for third week -- 2 Russian helicopters shot down in Kherson -- and more

Ukraine Daily

Sunday, March 13

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Russia’s war against Ukraine

Russian forces shell International Center for Peacekeeping and Security in Lviv Oblast. Early on March 13, Russian forces fired at least 8 missiles at the military training base, according to the Lviv regional administration. The base is 20 kilometers from the Polish border. No information about casualties has been reported yet.

Russian forces hit Ivano-Frankivsk airbase early on March 13. City mayor Ruslan Martsinkiv reported that the airport became the target of Russian attacks for the second day in row. He urged those who live close to the airport to relocate.

Russian forces damage Sviatohirsk Lavra church in Donetsk Oblast. The popular pilgrimage spot that belongs to Ukrainian Orthodox Church, but that is under the Moscow Patriarchate, was damaged on March 12, when Russian soldiers shelled the city of Sviatohirsk. At the time of attack, around 520 civilians and monks were at the site.

2 Russian helicopters shot down in Kherson Oblast. The Ukrainian military reports that one of the pilots survived and will be taken to the hospital.

WSJ: Moscow Stock Exchange to remain closed for third week. The Moscow Exchange said the country’s main stock market will stay closed until March 18. It has been closed since Feb. 25.

Russian troops no longer in Ukraine’s port city of Skadovsk. According to the city’s mayor, Oleksandr Yakovlev, the situation in Skadovsk is under control and there is electricity, gas and water supply. On March 9, Russian military vehicles entered the city and Russian troops reportedly seized all the computers from the city council.

Ukraine evacuates 13,000 civilians through humanitarian corridors on March 12, twice as many as the day before. Around 8,000 people were evacuated from the city of Sumy alone, according to Deputy PM Iryna Vereshchuk. Of fourteen planned corridors, nine were able to be used.

Danilov: Lithuania to become Putin’s next target if Russia wins the war against Ukraine. Ukraine’s intelligence indicates that Putin wants to target Lithuania, according to Oleksiy Danilov, secretary of the National Security and Defense Council. Lithuania was the first republic of the Soviet Union to proclaim independence.

Survey: Over 80% of Americans see Ukraine as ’friendly’ or an ally, 70% consider Russia ‘unfriendly’ or an enemy. According to the survey by the international think tank YouGov, the vast majority of the U.S. now perceive Ukraine as favorably as they perceive France, Germany, and Japan. Only three countries – Britain, Canada, and Australia – are perceived more favorably.

FM Dmytro Kuleba: Russians plan to organize a sham ‘referendum’ in Kherson. The Russian forces, who control the southern Ukrainian city since March 5, will try to stage a separatist referendum to create a “Kherson people’s republic,” mimicking what Russians did in eastern Ukraine with Donetsk and Luhansk in 2014.

In 4 days, 2 million Ukrainians apply for $215 government assistance. Individual entrepreneurs and officially employed Ukrainians from the regions directly affected by the war can receive $215 from the state. Applications are accepted via Diia, a state services app.

SBU: Russian troops were ordered to shoot at civilians in Kharkiv. The State Security Service published an intercepted phone call indicating that Russian soldiers received orders to shoot at anyone they can, including children.

Peace talks between Ukraine, Russia continue via video conference. The delegations met in person three times, with no conclusive results. The last meeting took place on March 7. Among the top priorities is setting the humanitarian corridors, especially for the encircled city of Mariupol.

Forbes Ukraine: Ukrainian forces destroyed Russian equipment worth $5.1 billion. According to the Armed Forces, Ukrainian troops have destroyed 2,593 units of Russian military equipment, including planes, tanks, and artillery.

Zelensky: 500-600 Russian soldiers are now prisoners of war. President Volodymyr Zelensky said he can’t give an exact number of Russian prisoners of war due to the rapidly changing numbers.

Zelensky: To seize Kyiv, they will have to destroy it. “If there are hundreds of thousands of people, who are now being mobilized by Russia, and they come with hundreds or thousands of tanks, they will take Kyiv. We understand that,” said President Volodymyr Zelensky, adding that Russia will have to enact carpet bombing and destroy the city first.

The human cost of Russia’s war

Zelensky: 1,300 Ukrainian soldiers killed by Russia. This is the first time President Volodymyr Zelensky mentioned Ukraine’s estimated military casualties. Russia launched a full-scale invasion on Feb. 24. Ukraine’s Armed Forces estimate Russian casualties to be over 12,000.

RFE/RL: Morgues in Belarus fill up with the bodies of Russian soldiers, locals say. Russian soldiers killed in Ukraine are being brought by truck to the morgues and then sent back to Russia by train or plane, according to residents who talked to RFE/RL. The morgues in Belarusian cities of Mozyr, Homel and Naroulia are reportedly full.

Zelensky: Sergeant Inna Derusova first woman to be awarded the Hero of Ukraine title posthumously. A field medic, she was killed during an artillery attack on Okhtyrka on Feb. 24, the first day of Russia’s invasion. She saved more than 10 soldiers that day.

57 people, mostly killed civilians, buried in mass grave in churchyard in Bucha, local activist reports. There have been many reports of the Russian forces killing civilians in Bucha, a satellite town near Kyiv. According to a local activist Oleksandr Ostapa, locals have buried 57 unidentified bodies near a church in Bucha, 53 of them civilians.

Defense ministry: Russian forces shoot at evacuating civilians, kill 7. According to the ministry’s intelligence unit, the attack took place on March 11 as a column of women and children was moving out of the village Peremoha in Kyiv Oblast, using the approved evacuation corridor. Seven people were killed, including one child.

Russia’s war kills 79 Ukrainian children. According to Prosecutor General’s Office, almost 100 children have been injured since Russia launched its full-scale invasion of Ukraine on Feb. 24.

International response

Serbia reverses course, won’t increase flights to Russia. Serbia earlier doubled its flights from Belgrade to Moscow in response to higher demand, but has since reversed the decision after sharp criticism. The country has refused to sanction Russia and has been used to circumvent airspace restrictions to Russian flights.

Minister: Germany to stop most Russian oil imports by end of 2022. German Economy Minister Robert Habeck also told the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung that Germany would stop importing Russian coal by fall. Yet, he added that it’s hard to halt imports of Russian gas.

Biden allocates $200 million in military aid for Ukraine. The memorandum on military aid signed by U.S. President Joe Biden on March 12 includes money for “defense articles and services,” military education and training.

Scholz, Macron urge Putin to call immediate ceasefire in Ukraine. German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and French President Emmanuel Macron made the proposal during a call with the Russian autocrat on March 12.

MoneyGram suspends services in Russia due to war against Ukraine. The U.S. money transfer company said that it hoped for a “peaceful resolution to protect civilians across all impacted regions.”

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Today’s Ukraine Daily was brought to you by Asami Terajima, Daria Shulzhenko, Natalia Datskevych, Sergiy Slipchenko, Oleg Sukhov, Olena Goncharova, Oleksiy Sorokin, Olga Rudenko, Toma Istomina, Lili Bivings and Brad LaFoy.

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