Ukraine Daily Summary - Sunday, December 18

Russia continues to shell civilian infrastructure in Kherson Oblast -- Over 1.2 million calls made to Ukraine's surrender hotline service -- Iran resupplies Russia with new batch of kamikaze drones -- China has been paying 'careful attention' to Russia's poor military performance in Ukraine -- and more

Ukraine Daily

Sunday, December 18

Russia’s war against Ukraine


The Christmas tree is being set up ahead the Christmas celebration at the Sophia Square in Kyiv, Ukraine on December 17, 2022. (Photo by Vladimir Shtanko/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

Another Ukrainian top general says Russia might attack from north. Ukraine is preparing for another possible Russian attack from the north, Major General Andrii Kovalchuk, head of Southern Operational Command, told Sky News. Kovalchuk said Ukraine’s forces would need more military support to be ready to combat Russia, adding that the heaviest fighting might still be ahead.

Ukraine’s intelligence: Over 1.2 million calls made to surrender hotline service. Over 1.2 million calls have been made to Ukraine’s “I Want to Live” hotline, according to the Defense Ministry’s Intelligence Directorate’s representative Andriy Yusov on Dec. 17. The “I Want to Live” hotline allows Russians to surrender themselves or their units to the Ukrainian army.

Intelligence: Iran resupplies Russia with new batch of kamikaze drones. Russian forces resumed attacks against Ukraine using Iranian kamikaze drones, said Andrii Yusov, the Defense Ministry’s Main Intelligence Directorate spokesman. He added that Iran shipped a new “relatively small” batch of Shahed-131 and Shahed-136 drones.

Governor: Russia continues to shell civilian infrastructure in Kherson Oblast. Kherson Oblast Governor Yaroslav Yanushevych said the Russian forces attacked a facility providing geriatric care in the village of Stepanivka north of Kherson. No casualties were reported. Earlier, one person was killed in the Russian shelling of Kherson.

Cabinet Ministry: Ukraine to open around 10,000 new ‘invincibility centers.’ Ukraine intends to triple the number of “invincibility centers” across the country, the Cabinet Ministry announced on Dec. 17. The centers offer people the ability to warm up, charge their phones, and connect to the internet amid Russia’s ongoing attacks.

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CIA Director: China has been paying ‘careful attention’ to Russia’s poor military performance in Ukraine. CIA Director Bill Burns said in an interview with PBS that no other foreign leader “has paid more careful attention to that war and Russia’s poor military performance than Xi Jinping has,” as he thinks about his own ambitions in Taiwan and elsewhere.

ISW: NYT investigation of Russian military documents proves how flawed planning assumptions plagued Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The U.S.-based think tank has long assessed that faulty Russian planning assumptions, campaign design decisions, and violations of its own military doctrine undermined Russian operations in Ukraine.

The human cost of Russia’s war

Prosecutor General’s Office: Russia’s war has killed at least 450 children, injured 863 since Feb. 24. The real number of children killed and injured due to Russia’s war is expected to be higher as the current count does not include casualties in Russian-occupied territories or where hostilities are ongoing.

Death toll of Russian missile attack at residential building in Kryvyi Rih rises to 5. Five people were killed, including a 64-year-old woman and a young family with a 1-year-old son, in Russia’s Dec. 16 missile attack on the industrial city of Kryvyi Rih, Dnipropetrovsk Oblast. Twelve were wounded, including four children.

Official: Russian shelling kills 1 person, injures 2 in Kherson Oblast. Russian shelling of Stepanivka, Kherson Oblast, killed a woman and injured two people, reported Deputy Head of the President’s Office Kyrylo Tymoshenko.

General Staff: Russia has lost 97,690 troops in Ukraine since Feb. 24. On Dec. 17, the General Staff added 420 Russian troops to its estimated number of Russian losses.

International response

Scholz: We must continue talking with Russia to end war. There is a great danger of a further escalation of Russia’s war against Ukraine, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz told Süddeutsche Zeitung. “If we don’t speak, Russia is even less likely to end the war,” he said.

Austria adopts resolution calling Holodomor in Ukraine ‘terrible crime.’ The National Council of Austria adopted a resolution calling the Holodomor, a deliberately created famine that Joseph Stalin orchestrated 90 years ago in Ukraine in 1932-1933 a “terrible crime” of the Stalinist regime, according to the Ukrinform news website.

Scholz: Germany will not unilaterally transfer tanks to Ukraine next year. Germany will not unilaterally decide to send Western tanks to Ukraine in 2023, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said, as quoted by Suddeutsche Zeitung.

In other news

TVORCHI to represent Ukraine at 2023 Eurovision contest. TVORCHI has been chosen to represent Ukraine with its entry “Heart of Steel” in the 2023 Eurovision song contest.

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