May 20, 2022

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The Russo-Ukrainian War: Some Key Developments in the Conflict

The Russo-Ukrainian War: Some Key Developments in the Conflict

Two million people – half of them children – have fled Ukraine in less than two weeks since Russia invaded the country, officials said on Tuesday, in Europe’s worst refugee crisis since World War Two. It grows day by day.

The humanitarian situation in the besieged cities of the country is becoming more and more dangerousincluding in Mariupol, where corpses lay in the streets and hopes for a mass evacuation of civilians were again dashed.

A Ukrainian military official said that the country needs air defense systems in the first place.

Satellite imagery from Planet Labs PBC shows a crowd of Belarusian helicopters and a Russian suspect at the Machulichi Air Force Base outside Minsk, Belarus, on Tuesday. Analysts believe the floods north of Kyiv seen in satellite images most likely come from Ukrainian forces trying to halt the Russian advance.

Here’s a look at the key things to know about war:

What has been directly attested or confirmed by the associated press?

Women and children in Mariupol They gathered in a bunker in the basement as artillery fire erupted in the distance. Juma Jannah, one of the women, regretted, saying: “Why do I not cry? I want my home, I want my job. I am very sad for the people, the city and the children.”

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Civilians in Mariupol, a city of about 430,000 people, were without water, heating, health systems and telephone services for several days, and many of them turned to storming the shops. A video clip showed a Ukrainian soldier telling people, “Please unite. Don’t panic. Please don’t steal everything. You will live here together.”

Videos showed people boarding buses in Sumy on Tuesday and Red Cross-marked buses traveling on a snowy road as they headed out of the city. Ukraine’s Deputy Prime Minister Irina Verychuk said the two sides agreed to a ceasefire from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. to evacuate civilians in Sumy, who were heading southwest to the Ukrainian city of Poltava.

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How are the evacuations going?

Vereshuk said 5,000 people had been evacuated from Sumy. The Russian military gave a different number, saying that 723 people had been evacuated from the city and identified them as being mostly citizens of India, and the rest from China, Jordan and Tunisia. He did not mention the Ukrainians among the evacuees.

But Vereshuk said the planned evacuation of civilians from Mariupol failed because Russian forces fired on a Ukrainian convoy carrying humanitarian shipments to the city, which was later on its way to transport people.

Natalia Modrenko, an official with the Ukraine UN mission, accused Russia of effectively holding civilians “hostage” and said the “critical situation” in Mariupol and other cities required immediate action by world leaders, humanitarian and medical organizations.

She told a UN Security Council meeting on Tuesday afternoon that civilians, mostly women and children, “are not allowed to leave nor are humanitarian aid allowed to enter”.

The Russian military denied firing on convoys and accused Ukraine of obstructing evacuation efforts.

Repeated attempts to create safe evacuation corridors since the end of last week have failed amid continued fighting and objections to proposed routes.

What else is happening on Earth?

The Ukrainian emergency services said that on Tuesday evening, Russian planes bombed residential areas around Kharkiv, the second largest city in Ukraine, and Zhytomyr to the west of Kyiv, and its army also intensified its bombing of the suburbs of Kyiv.

The bombing in Malin, a town of 25,000 people near Zhytomyr, killed at least five people, including two children, and destroyed a textile factory and seven homes, the agency said. Two people were killed, one of whom was 7 years old, in the shelling of Chuhiv near Kharkiv.

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Ukrainian officials also reported squalid conditions in the suburbs of Kyiv, Bucha, Hostomil, Irben, Vyshhorod and Borodyanka, including dead bodies that could not be burial.

The mayor of Lviv said the city in the far west of Ukraine is struggling to feed and housing More than 200,000 people have fled there. The displaced are housed in gyms, schools and other buildings in the city.

In the nearly two weeks since Russian President Vladimir Putin began the invasion, his forces have captured an area of ​​southern and coastal Ukraine, but have seen their advance halted in many areas, including around Kyiv.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has vowed that his country will fight the Russian invasion of its cities, fields and river banks.

“We will not surrender, we will not lose,” he told the British House of Commons via video link, recalling Winston Churchill’s “Never Surrender” speech during World War II.

How many people were killed?

Thousands of people are believed to have been killed, both civilians and soldiers, although the actual number is unknown.

Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines told lawmakers in Washington on Tuesday that the United States believed Russia underestimated the strength of the Ukrainian resistance before launching its invasion and incurred thousands of casualties.

What about aid to Ukraine?

Major General Boris Kremenitsky, Defense Attache at the Ukrainian Embassy in Washington, said additional air defense capabilities are Ukraine’s number one priority, after visiting the Pentagon.

They can be ground-based air defense systems. It could be fighter planes, however feasible, Kremenitsky told The Associated Press.

He said there are countries around the world with Soviet-made air defense systems that Ukrainians know how to operate.

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“The US government can also incentivize those countries to provide us with this equipment,” he said.

Poland announced, on Tuesday, that it will hand over to the United States all of its MiG-29 combat aircraft, which Ukrainian pilots are training to fly. But the Pentagon responded that Poland’s offer to hand the planes over to the United States so they could be transferred to Ukraine was untenable and raised serious concerns for NATO.

Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said the United States would continue to talk to Poland on this issue.

Were sanctions imposed on Russia?

Yeah. US President Joe Biden said the US will ban all imports of Russian oilEven if it means higher costs for Americans, especially in the gas pump. Energy exports have maintained a steady flow of cash to Russia despite the severe restrictions it faces.

The Russian Central Bank has severely tightened currency controls in ways not seen since the Soviet era. The country’s commercial banks were ordered to cap the amount customers can withdraw from their hard currency deposits at $10,000 in US dollars. Any withdrawals in excess of this amount will be converted into rubles at the current exchange rates.

Oil price hike and other vital commodities, such as wheat used in Government – subsidized bread and pastadisturbing global markets.

McDonald’s, Starbucks, Coca-Cola, PepsiCo and General Electric announced Tuesday that they will temporarily suspend business in Russia. Shell said on Tuesday it would stop buying Russian oil after Ukrainian officials criticized the energy giant for buying a cargo of crude from Moscow.

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Follow the Associated Press’ coverage of the Russia-Ukraine war: https://apnews.com/hub/russia-ukraine