Russian strikes caused new casualties on Tuesday in Ukraine. In the east, several hundred refugee soldiers at the Azovstal post surrendered after weeks of siege.
A war on two fronts. Fighting continues on the Ukrainian lands, which were once again bombed by the Russian army, which is concentrating its efforts in the east of the country. The war between Kyiv and Moscow also continues to occupy the international scene since the conflict prompted Sweden and Finland to join NATO, fearing that they would be targeted by their Russian neighbour. An account of the latest events in Ukraine.
• At least eight dead and several wounded in the Russian strikes
Eight people were killed and 12 injured on Tuesday in a Russian strike on the Ukrainian village of Desna north of Kyiv known to house a large military training camp, local aid workers said.
Another Russian attack on Tuesday morning hit a Ukrainian military base in the Lviv region (west) located just 15 kilometers from the border with Poland, according to Maxim Kozytsky, the regional governor of Lviv.
For its part, the Russian Defense Ministry explained that sea-to-surface Kalibr missiles hit the Starichi station near this base in the Yavoriv region, which led to the “liquidation of reservists during training” and “foreign weapons and military equipment from the United States and European countries that were to be Sent to Donbass. According to the governor of the Sumy region, Dmytro Zevitsky, the last blow left “at least five wounded.”
• 265 Ukrainian soldiers from Azovstal in the hands of the Russians
On Tuesday, the Russian Defense Ministry said that about 265 Ukrainian fighters stationed in steel plants in Azovstal, the last stronghold of the Ukrainian resistance in Mariupol, have surrendered to the pro-Russian forces and have been captured since Monday.
“During the past 24 hours, 265 fighters surrendered and surrendered, of whom 51 were seriously wounded,” the ministry said in a statement on the status of the Russian attack on Ukraine. “Everyone who needs medical help is sent to the Novoazovsk hospital,” he said, located in a pro-Russian separatist region.
For his part, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said on Monday that the main thing is to “save the lives of our comrades.” “I want to stress this: Ukraine needs its living heroes. This is our principle,” he added.
• Negotiations between Kyiv and Moscow falter
Peace talks between Ukraine and Russia are “on hold” because Moscow does not show any “understanding” of the situation, accused Mikhailo Podolyak, an adviser to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and a member of the Ukrainian delegation, on Tuesday.
He said that Moscow “does not understand that the war is no longer conducted according to its rules, schedule or plans.” “The strategic objective of the Russians is all or nothing,” said Michalo Podolyak. Russian political elites “are afraid to tell the truth, that is, to withdraw from the war under conditions very different from those initially announced.”
Several meetings were held between negotiators from both sides, but they did not produce tangible results. The last meeting between the heads of the two delegations, Vladimir Medinsky from the Russian side and David Arachhamia from Ukraine, dates back to April 22, according to Russian agencies.
• Putin criticizes European “political suicide” in response to the Russian oil embargo
Russian President Vladimir Putin has accused the West of imposing sanctions on Russia, particularly in connection with a future European embargo on Russian oil.
Vladimir Putin pointed out that “Western sanctions are the reason for the rise in oil,” before asserting: “Depriving oneself of Russian oil is economic suicide.”
Since the start of the Russian attack on Ukraine on February 24, the 27 EU countries have been trying to reduce their dependence on Russian hydrocarbons, but have so far failed to agree to halt the gradual purchases of Russian oil. Hungary is currently blocking an oil embargo project against Russia, after Budapest calculated that halting Russian oil purchases would cost it between 15 and 18 billion.
• A new phone conversation between Macron and Zelensky
Three months later, the two leaders hit the telephone exchanges. Emmanuel Macron spoke again by phone with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Tuesday.
“The President of the Republic questioned President Zelensky about the situation on the ground, in particular in Mariupol, while the evacuation of the Azovstal plant continues, and about the needs of Ukraine,” the Elysee noted in a press release.
While the Presidency of the Republic emphasizes the continuation of arms deliveries to Kyiv “which will intensify in the coming days and weeks”, the Presidency of the Republic specifies that Emmanuel Macron discussed with his counterpart Ukraine’s request for membership in the European Union. It is an issue that will be examined “during the European Council meeting in June on the basis of the opinion of the European Commission”.