Thursday, 4 May 2022
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Russia’s war against Ukraine
Demonstrators hold placards and a large Ukrainian flag during a solidarity march with Ukraine on April 30, 2022 in Budapest, Hungary. Now in its third month, Russia’s war on Ukraine is still widely condemned across the world. People take to the streets of cities to protest against the invasion and show their solidarity with the Ukrainian People. (Getty Images)
Evacuations from Mariupol to resume on May 4. Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vershchuk said the Ukrainian government has planned four humanitarian corridors to evacuate civilians to Zaporizhzhia on May 4 if all safety conditions are met. The meeting points are Port City shopping mall in Mariupol at 8 a.m. local time, Lunacharske Circle, close to Berdyansk at 10 a.m., Tokmak at 3 p.m. and the village of Vasylivka at 4 p.m.
156 civilians evacuated from Azovtal arrive in Zaporizhzhia. Nearly 1,000 people remain trapped at the besieged facility, while Russian troops are trying to break into the plant after an intense night of shelling that killed two women.
Ukrainian troops repel 12 Russian attacks in Donbas on May 3. Ukraine’s Joint Forces Operation reported that as a result of the fighting in Ukraine’s eastern Donbas region on May 3 Russian losses include six tanks, two artillery systems, three MLRS, 15 units of armored combat vehicles and nine cars.
Zelensky: Ukraine seeks full restoration of territory, including Crimea. Speaking at the Wall Street Journal’s CEO Council Summit in London on May 3, President Zelensky said the goals of the war are to halt Russia’s advance, reclaim territory, and lastly to ensure the restoration of Ukraine’s entire territory through diplomacy. “We are not retreating,” Zelensky told the summit via video conference. “Victory will be ours.” The president estimated that rebuilding Ukraine might be take as much as $600 billion. Zelensky encouraged global companies to invest in Ukraine, but also said Russia must pay reparations to the country.
Russia fires a barrage of missiles on several regions across Ukraine on the evening of May 3 as heavy fighting intensifies in the east. Approximately 18 Russian missiles hit infrastructure sites across the country. Preliminary reports suggest that at least eight other missiles were downed by Ukraine’s Air Defense, the military said.
Russian missile hits Ukraine’s westernmost Zakarpattia Oblast. It appears to be the first attack on Zakarpattia since the beginning of the war. An unspecified infrastructure site was hit “in the mountainous part of the region,” according to the local governor.
Parliament greenlights deploying Territorial Defense Units in war zones. Ukraine’s parliament voted to allow Territorial Defense Units to fight outside their assigned regions, along with Ukraine’s military. Prior, Territorial Defense Units operated within the regions of their conscription.
Explosives technicians plan to finish inspection of Kyiv Oblast by end of May. About 8,000 hectares have already been inspected for Russian mines and booby traps, according to Oleksandr Pavliuk, the governor of Kyiv Oblast.
Russia steals 400,000 tons of grain from temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine. According to Taras Vysotsky, first deputy minister of agriculture, the total amounts to about one third of all grain stocks in temporarily occupied regions of Zaporizhzhia, Kherson, Donetsk, Luhansk oblasts. Vysotsky said if the theft continues, the regions may experience famine.
Ukrainian forces destroy Russian command post, 3 ammunition depots in south. Ukraine’s Southern Operational Command reported that it carried out over 40 fire missions along the border of Kherson and Mykolaiv Oblasts, destroying several manpower and equipment concentration points.
General Staff: Russian forces move heavy mortars, rocket launchers to eastern Ukraine. The Ukrainian military reported that additional units of heavy weapon were being transported from Russia’s Belgorod towards the direction of the city of Izium in Kharkiv Oblast.
Ukraine strikes Russian positions on Snake Island. In a video posted to Facebook on May 3, the Ukrainian Operational Command South reported hitting two Russian military positions on the Russian-occupied Snake Island with a Bayraktar-2 drone.
General Staff: 24,200 Russian troops killed since Feb. 24. Ukraine’s General Staff also said that Russia had lost 1,062 tanks, 2,567 armored fighting vehicles, 475 artillery systems, 162 multiple launch rocket systems, 80 surface-to-air missiles, 155 helicopters, 194 jets, 291 drones, and ten boats.
Russia shells 3 villages in Sumy Oblast, no casualties recorded. Governor of Sumy Oblast Dmytro Zhyvytskyi said that on May 3 Russia fired nearly two dozen times on residential areas in the Bilokopitove, Shalygin, and Zarutske villages.
Lawmakers ban pro-Russian parties. 330 lawmakers supported the bill on May 3. According to the bill, parties that support, or whitewash Russia’s war against Ukraine and deny the fact that Moscow occupies Ukrainian territories, including Crimea and eastern Donbas, are to be banned. In March, several Ukrainian pro-Russian parties, including the Opposition Platform represented by 44 lawmakers, were prohibited. The party eventually dissolved.
Russian forces begin to storm Azovstal. Russian troops are trying to break into Mariupol’s Azovstal plant after a night of intense shelling that killed two civilians, Ukrainian defenders told Ukrainska Pravda on May 3. Two days prior, almost a hundred people were able to leave the plant, with nearly 1,000 people remaining trapped at the facility.
Kyiv Oblast authorities to build housing for those affected by war. According to the Kyiv Regional Administration, residents of Irpin and Borodyanka, who lost their housing due to Russia’s war, will receive permanent accommodation. Two residential complexes of 50,000 square meters each will be built within five months, the authorities say.
Russia accuses Israel of supporting ‘neo-Nazis.’ In an ironic twist of propaganda, Russia’s Foreign Ministry accused Israel of supporting “neo-Nazis” in Ukraine a day after Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov claimed Adolf Hitler had Jewish descent. Israel called Lavrov’s comments “unforgivable,” saying the remarks effectively blamed the Jews for the Holocaust.
The human cost of Russia’s war
Russian shelling kills 1, injures 4 in Kherson Oblast. The rural community of Kochubeyivsky in Kherson Oblast reported late on May 3 that Russia shelled Kherson Oblast earlier in the evening, killing one person and injuring four others.
Russian shelling kills 21 civilians, injures 27 in Donetsk Oblast on May 3. According to the Governor of Donetsk Oblast Pavlo Kyrylenko, this is the highest number of casualties in the region since Russia’s April 8 attack on Kramatorsk railway station that claimed the lives of 57 people and injured another 109.
Investigators finish work in Irpin, discover more bodies. Prosecutor General Iryna Venediktova reported that officers talked with 228 witnesses and established the chronology of events in Irpin during the Russian occupation of the city in March. Five new bodies of local residents shot dead were found during the latest inspection.
Russian shelling of Kharkiv Oblast kills 1 person, injures 3 in the last 24 hours. Kharkiv Oblast Governor Oleh Synehubov said on May 3 that a fire had broken out at one of the region’s enterprises due to shelling, killing a worker. Two people were wounded in the city of Kharkiv and one person in the Chuhuyiv area. The governor added that active fighting continues in the Izium direction.
Johnson addresses parliament, announces further $375 million to Ukraine. UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson became the first foreign official to address Ukraine’s parliament since Feb. 24. “Ukraine will win, Ukraine will be free,” Johnson said. The U.K. will also send $375 million worth of military aid to Ukraine, including Brimstone anti-ship missiles and Stormer anti-aircraft systems.
Die Welt: Germany plans to send howitzers to Ukraine. The German government decided to send seven Panzerhaubitze 2000 howitzers to Ukraine, German newspaper Die Welt reported, citing anonymous sources. Those howitzers are among the most powerful artillery weapons in the Bundeswehr inventories and can hit targets at a distance of 40 kilometers (25 miles). Training for the Ukrainian military will take place in Germany, the report reads.
Pope Francis willing to go meet Putin in Moscow, rules out travel to Kyiv. The Kremlin didn’t answer the Vatican’s offer. Pope Francis said he tried to understand Russia’s motivation to launch the war, adding that NATO’s actions may have been the cause. The Pope also told the Russian ambassador to the Vatican at the start of the war: “Please stop.”
Bloomberg: EU eyeing Africa as it seeks to replace Russian gas. The European Union will seek to increase cooperation with African countries to help replace imports of Russian natural gas and reduce dependence on Moscow by almost two-thirds this year, Bloomberg reported, citing a draft EU document. Countries in Africa such as Nigeria, Senegal, and Angola offer largely untapped potential for liquified natural gas. As a result of Russia’s all-out invasion of Ukraine, some EU countries aim to stop buying Russian gas.
In other news
Kyiv Independent journalists make it to Forbes Europe 30 under 30. Toma Istomina, Anna Myroniuk, Oleksiy Sorokin, and Anastasiia Lapatina were included by Forbes magazine in the top 30 leaders in the media and marketing industry in Europe to transform society under the age of 30. “Less than six months after founding the English-language publication, these Ukrainian journalists have shown bravery, tenacity, sensitivity and impact while reporting on a war in their home country,” Forbes said.
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