Ukraine War | EU to target Russian oil, Zelensky wants ‘a breather’: Top points

Russian forces pounded targets in eastern Ukraine as the war entered Day-70 on Wednesday. Here are top 8 developments in Russia-Ukraine War.
A firefighter works to extinguish a fire following a Russian bombardment at a park in Kharkiv, Ukraine, Tuesday.(AP)
A firefighter works to extinguish a fire following a Russian bombardment at a park in Kharkiv, Ukraine, Tuesday.(AP)
Updated on May 04, 2022 07:15 AM IST
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By | Written by Ishika Yadav

Moscow showed no signs of pulling back on Tuesday, nearly 10 weeks into a war that has killed thousands, destroyed cities and driven 5 million Ukrainians to flee abroad. Russian forces pounded targets in eastern Ukraine as the war entered Day-70 on Wednesday, unleashing rockets on a steel plant that is Ukraine's last redoubt in the port city of Mariupol as the European Union prepared to slap oil sanctions on Moscow.

Pummelled by Western sanctions, Russia now faces new measures from the EU that would target its oil industry and banks. The proposed new sanctions were expected to be detailed on Wednesday. Russia's own $1.8 trillion economy is heading for its biggest contraction since the years following the 1991 break-up of the Soviet Union.

Here are top 8 developments in Russia-Ukraine War:

1. Fresh Russian attacks in the Donetsk region killed 21 civilians and injured 27, regional governor Pavlo Kyrylenko said as per news agency Reuters. He said the figure was the highest daily death toll in the region since an attack on a railway station in Kramatorsk last month that killed more than 50 people.

Attacks and shelling also intensified in Luhansk making it “impossible to organise evacuations,” regional governor Serhiy Haida said. "There are no safe cities in the Luhansk region," he said on Telegram.

2. Russian forces also renewed attacks on Azovstal steel plant, the last pocket of resistance, in Ukraine's Mariupol, said Ukrainian defenders on Tuesday. Mariupol, a city of 400,000 before Russia launched its invasion on Feb 24, has seen the bloodiest fighting of the war, enduring weeks of siege and shelling. More than 200 civilians are still trapped in the steel plant, Mariupol Mayor Vadym Boichenko said, with 100,000 civilians still in the city.

3. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky accused Russia of breaching agreements to pause fighting long enough to allow vulnerable civilians to be moved to safety, even the UN-coordinated operation at the steel works in Mariupol. "They're still fighting. They're still bombarding and shooting. So we need some ceasefire. We need a breather," Zelensky said via video link at a Wall Street Journal event.

4. Russia claimed on Tuesday that it has attacked and destroyed weapons sent to Ukraine by the west.

“Forces had struck a military airfield near the Black Sea port of Odesa with missiles destroying drones, missiles and ammunition supplied to Ukraine by the United States and its European allies,” Russia’s defence ministry said. Ukraine denies claims and says, “three missiles targeted the Odesa region and all were intercepted.”

5. Zelensky has put the preliminary cost of war damage in Ukraine so far at around $600 billion. He urged foreign companies on Tuesday to pull out of the Russian market because not doing so "means you are directly supporting that war machine."

6. The European Union will slap new sanctions on Russia for waging war against Ukraine, targeting Moscow's oil industry, more Russian banks and those responsible for disinformation, the EU's top diplomat said on Tuesday. Officials said European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen is expected to spell out the proposed new sanctions on Wednesday, and that they would include a ban on imports of Russian oil by the end of this year.

7. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson told Ukraine on Tuesday he believed it would defeat Russia and expose the "gigantic error" of the Kremlin's invasion as he invoked Britain's wartime leader Winston Churchill to underline his support for Kyiv. He also announced an additional 300 million pounds ($375 million) in aid, and said: "This is Ukraine's finest hour, that will be remembered and recounted for generations to come," echoing the words spoken by Churchill in 1940 when Britain faced the threat of being invaded and defeated by Nazi Germany.

8. US President Joe Biden on Tuesday addressed the assembly line workers at a plant in Alabama that produces the Javelin anti-tank missile and said, "If you don't stand up to dictators, history has shown us, they keep coming, they keep coming." The US has sent several Javelin anti-tank missiles to Ukraine to help fight the Russian invasion.

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