Day 375 of the Invasion of Ukraine: Bakhmut is Still not under Russian ControlUkraine |Author: Nikola Danailov | March 5, 2023, Sunday // 09:52| views
Day 375 of the invasion of Ukraine. Summary of key events in the last 24 hours:
- Fighting on the streets of Bakhmut, but the city in Ukraine is not yet under Russian control
- Civilians flee Bakhmut in anticipation of the withdrawal of the Ukrainian army
- Ukraine has managed to overcome the consequences of Russian strikes on the energy system
- NATO commander in Europe: Russia has lost over 200,000 soldiers since the start of the war
- Ukraine is working to bring Putin before the International Criminal Court in The Hague
- Saudi Arabia sends 0 million in humanitarian aid to Ukraine
Fighting on the streets of Bakhmut, but the city in Ukraine is not yet under Russian control
Ukrainian and Russian armed forces are fighting in the streets of Bakhmut, but the city is not under Russian control. About 4,000 civilians are still living in shelters without water, electricity or gas.
The deputy mayor of Bakhmut, Oleksandr Marchenko, described the current situation to the BBC. According to him, there is almost no building without destruction and the whole city is destroyed. Russian forces are increasing pressure on Ukrainian defenses.
Soldiers from the Russian army and from the "Wagner" group have advanced in the northern suburbs in the last 24 hours.
Geolocation footage confirms that Kyiv troops have blown up two important bridges in the area, indicating that they are trying to impede Russian movement in an eastern direction.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky welcomed the President of the European Parliament Roberta Metsola in Lviv.
"I'm glad to be back in Ukraine, with these heroes who refuse to surrender. Those who sacrificed everything to protect our values," Metsola wrote on social media.
Kyiv is gathering more and more support for an international tribunal for Russia's war crimes, President Zelensky previously pointed out:
"The responsibility of Russia and its leadership is personal! For aggression and terror against our country and people. And when there is their responsibility, justice will be restored."
Meanwhile, Washington announced a new 0 million military aid package for Ukraine, including ammunition for the HIMARS missile systems and for howitzers, as well as Bradley armored vehicles.
Civilians flee Bakhmut in anticipation of the withdrawal of the Ukrainian army
Pressure by Russian forces on Ukrainians in Bakhmut intensified today as civilians tried to flee with the help of troops who Western analysts say may be preparing to withdraw from the key eastern stronghold, the Associated Press reported.
According to Ukrainian troops assisting them, one woman was killed and two men were seriously wounded by shelling as they tried to cross a makeshift bridge from the city in Donetsk region, the agency added.
A Ukrainian military official, who asked not to be named for security reasons, told The Associated Press that it is now too dangerous for civilians to leave Bakhmut in vehicles and that people must flee on foot instead.
For months, Bakhmut has been a key target of Moscow's eastern offensive in the war, with Russian troops, including forces from the private group Wagner, moving ever closer.
An AP team near Bakhmut on Saturday saw a pontoon bridge set up by Ukrainian soldiers to help the few remaining residents reach the nearby village of Khromove. Later, they saw at least five burning houses as a result of the attacks in Khromove, adds AP.
Ukraine has managed to overcome the consequences of Russian strikes on the energy system
Russian forces continue to attack the Ukrainian city of Bakhmut. The number of victims of the rocket strike in the city of Zaporizhzhia, which took place on Thursday, has increased - they are now 13. A child was also killed in the attack on a 5-story residential building.
Ukraine has managed to overcome the consequences of Russian strikes on the energy system, said the country's energy minister. President Volodymyr Zelensky declared for stronger cooperation with European institutions this year.
Ukraine's cooperation with European institutions this year will be more comprehensive than last year, with the main task being the preparation of the country for EU membership. This was stated by President Volodymyr Zelensky after his meeting with the President of the EP Roberta Metsola, who participated in the "United for Justice" conference in the Ukrainian city of Lviv.
"Obviously, this year our cooperation with the European institutions will be even more complete than last year. The task is to actively prepare everything for our country's membership in the EU, to increase the supply of weapons to Ukraine and to strengthen sanctions against Russia. And I thank Roberta Metsola and all our friends in Europe who help Ukraine on the path of integration," Zelensky said in his traditional video address.
During her visit to Ukraine, European Parliament President Roberta Metsola called for the country to be allowed to start negotiations for EU membership this year. Metsola said she was impressed with the pace at which the Verkhovna Rada and the government were moving forward.
Meanwhile, Energy Minister German Galushchenko announced that Ukraine had managed to overcome the effects of the Russian strikes, which damaged about 50 percent of the country's energy infrastructure. Galushchenko described the aggressor's attacks on the energy system as unprecedented. There have been 14 massive missile strikes and 17 drone attacks since October. Among the objects affected are thermal and hydroelectric plants and substations of the transmission system.
The Minister of Energy assured that the country is coming out of the winter fully provided with fuel. At the beginning of February, coal stocks in thermal power plants amounted to 1 million and 160 thousand tons. Natural gas reserves in Ukraine's underground storage are 9.7 billion cubic meters or about the same as last year's volumes.
NATO commander in Europe: Russia has lost over 200,000 soldiers since the start of the war
Since the start of the war against Ukraine, more than 200,000 Russian soldiers and more than 1,800 officers have been killed or wounded, said Christopher Cavoli, commander of NATO's joint forces in Europe, quoted today by the German magazine "Spiegel".
The general was speaking at a traditional dinner at Hamburg's town hall, where he said "the scale of this war is unbelievable".
According to him, Russia has lost more than 2,000 tanks, and on average, its soldiers fire more than 23,000 artillery shells per day.
Cavoli believes that after the Russian attack on Ukraine, NATO must adapt to the new reality.
“If someone comes with a tank, you should have a tank too. However, one of the lessons of the Cold War is that the accuracy of weapons is what matters. In addition, the production capacity of the defense industry is important. The war will be won by whoever can produce faster," said the general.
According to the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, since the beginning of the war, Russian losses in manpower have exceeded 150,000 people.
Ukraine is working to bring Putin before the International Criminal Court in The Hague
Ukraine is working to bring Russian President Vladimir Putin to justice for war crimes on its territory, the country's chief prosecutor Andriy Kostin announced in an interview published on Saturday, March 4 on the RBC-Ukraine portal.
"If he does not agree to come to The Hague, he must be handed over by Russia, but let's put it this way, let's not concentrate on problems that may arise in the future. The main thing is to be established mechanisms to bring accountability. When this will happen and whether it will happen in Putin's presence is already a matter of the future. I am against focusing now and discussing whether it is possible or impossible to physically bring Putin to account internationally level," said Kostin.
He noted that Ukraine's goal is to create mechanisms to bring war criminals to justice and collect evidence.
"And how history will develop - time will tell. The main goal is to prepare everything. In order to bring Putin to responsibility, we need to apply international mechanisms, there are two such mechanisms - attraction through the creation of a special tribunal, and the second are the capabilities of the International Criminal Court in The Hague, which has jurisdiction to investigate and consider such war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide," said the Ukrainian Prosecutor General.
According to him, it is important that Putin be brought to justice in the International Criminal Court.
"We are working on this line of activity. In order to implement the international mechanisms, in the near future we expect to open a permanent office of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court Karim Khan in Kyiv. There are also plans to open offices of the International Criminal Court in the regions of Ukraine, but about that - later," said Kostin.
Saudi Arabia sends 0 million in humanitarian aid to Ukraine
Ukraine received 0 million worth of humanitarian aid from Saudi Arabia, DPA and BTA reported, citing Andriy Yermak, head of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky's office.
It includes 135 generators with a power of 20 to 400 kilowatts, thermal blankets and hygiene materials, specified the head of the presidential office and thanked for the help.
The humanitarian aid from the three planes will be distributed among six Ukrainian regions. It will reach thousands of people in Ukraine.
"Humanitarian aid is a sign of the solidarity and mutual support that exists between our countries," said Yermak.
The critical point of the war in Ukraine for several weeks has been Bakhmut, where fierce street fighting has been going on for the past 24 hours, but Russian units have not yet captured the administrative center of the Bakhmut district in Ukraine's Donetsk region. The civilian population tries to escape with the help of the army.
This week, a rocket attack was carried out in Zaporizhzhia, hitting a five-story building. Today, the Emergency Situations Service of Ukraine updated the number of dead to 11. Among them is a child. The building was hit by a missile from the Russian S-300 system. President Zelensky announced that he will hold Russia responsible for yet another attack on civilians.
"The terrorist state wants to turn every day into a day of terror against our people. However, evil will not rule in this country. We will push out the occupiers and they will undoubtedly be held accountable for everything," Zelensky pointed out.
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