Zelensky lashes out at Putin - 'A humiliation for whole world...': 10 points
It has been more than 100 days that the war between Russia and Ukraine has kept the world on edge amid no signs of a ceasefire. Russia has destroyed and damaged 113 churches in Ukraine since the start of the war, Kyiv has claimed. Thousands of people have been killed in three months with no accurate numbers so far while millions have been displaced. The Russian invasion of Ukraine has caused human suffering, triggered a global food and commodity price crisis, and destabilised the global geopolitical order, analysts say, raising concerns. Moscow has escalated attacks in the east where bridges have been blown and apartment buildings have been shelled in the midst of intense fight, according to Ukrainian officials. Russian and Ukrainian forces battled street-by-street in Sievierodonetsk and neighboring Lysychansk - the last major areas of Luhansk province still held by Ukraine, news agency AP reported.
Here are the top updates on the war:
1. Lashing out at Russia president Vladimir Putin, Zelensky - in his nightly address - said that “the terrible consequences of the war could be stopped at any moment if one person in Moscow gave the order". "The fact that there is still no such order is obviously a humiliation for the whole world," the 44-year-old leader was quoted as saying by news agency Reuters.
2. Ukraine now says its aim is to push Russian forces back as far as possible, according to a Reuters report, as it claimed it had recaptured a swathe of the battlefield city of Sievierodonetsk. Head of the Sievierodonetsk civil-military administration Oleksandr Striuk, said that some of the city’s residents have been forcibly moved by the Russian forces to Russian-occupied regions of Ukraine, reported The Kyiv Independent, a local news platform.
4. The governor of Luhansk region Serhiy Gaidai said that the Russian forces are blowing up bridges across the Siverskyi Donets River to prevent Ukraine's bringing in military reinforcements and delivering aid to civilians in the town of Sievierodonetsk. As intense fighting raged around the industrial city - Sievierodonetsk, Kyiv announced that it was pushing back Russian troops.
5. The Russian defence ministry said on its Telegram channel that Ukrainian forces were retreating toward the city of Lysychansk after suffering "critical losses" of up to 90% in some units during the fighting for nearby Sievierodonetsk.
6. Russia's defence ministry said its forces shot down a Ukrainian military transport plane carrying weapons and munitions near the Black Sea port of Odesa. The ministry said Russian missiles also struck an artillery training centre in Ukraine's Sumy region where foreign instructors worked, reported Reuters.
7. According to Russia's foreign minister, western sanctions would have “no effect on the country's oil exports and predicted a big jump in profits from energy shipments this year.”
8. Ukrainian defence minister Oleksiy Reznikov on Saturday said that while it was impossible to predict when the war would end. “\My optimistic prognosis is that it is realistic to achieve this as early as this year,” Reuters quoted him as saying.
9. In the diplomatic sphere, Kyiv rebuked French President Emmanuel Macron for saying it was important not to "humiliate" Moscow.
10. A top US general Mark Milley, during his visit to Stockholm, said: “Finland and Sweden's joining NATO would put Russia in a difficult military position in the Baltic Sea.”
(With inputs from Reuters, AP)
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