Russian invasion: Ukraine war: That's the situation

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has praised the new military aid from the EU and the US as strengthening the defenses of his country attacked by Russia.

Russian invasion: Ukraine war: That's the situation

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has praised the new military aid from the EU and the US as strengthening the defenses of his country attacked by Russia.

"Quick deliveries and also the production of ammunition are planned," said Zelenskyj in his daily video message distributed in Kiev yesterday. "This is a strategic step," he said. The EU is spending two billion euros to supply Ukraine with a million new artillery shells for the fight against Russia over the next twelve months.

The US, in turn, put together a new defense package for $350 million (€326 million) to buy new weapons and ammunition. "This strengthens the conviction that we are united, that the movement towards victory over the terrorist state cannot be stopped," Zelenskyj said. The EU members had shown that they really wanted Europe to be strong and free. Selenskyj had previously personally thanked individual heads of government for their support over the phone.

Ukraine has long complained of a shortage of ammunition. Kiev's Defense Minister Oleksiy Reznikov said in early March that his country urgently needed a million artillery shells. He estimated the financial requirements at four billion euros. The United States is considered Ukraine's most important ally. Since the beginning of the war, their military aid has totaled well over $30 billion.

Russian ambassador criticizes arms deliveries to Ukraine

In Washington, Russia's Ambassador Anatoly Antonov criticized the new US military aid package for Ukraine. "Washington is guided by the idea of ​​inflicting a strategic defeat on our country," he said on the night.

The USA would "pour oil on the fire" by constantly supplying new weapons and ammunition and thereby widen the conflict. "Such actions endanger security across Europe and increase the risk of a direct clash between Russia and NATO." Moscow's leadership has repeatedly warned that arms deliveries from the West would encourage radical forces in Kiev to launch attacks on Russian territory.

Drone attack in Crimea

In the north of the Black Sea peninsula of Crimea, annexed by Russia, the anti-aircraft guns shot down Ukrainian drones, according to the authorities. Crimean head of administration Sergey Aksyonov announced last night that one person had been injured in the town of Dzhankoy. Houses and a grocery store were damaged by fallen debris. The exact extent of the damage was initially unclear.

In Kiev, the Defense Ministry's military intelligence said the attack was aimed at transporting missiles on railway tracks. Rockets were destroyed. This will prepare Crimea for liberation from Russian occupation.

There was no confirmation from the Russian side that missiles were said to have been destroyed. For example, Russia transports missiles for the Black Sea Fleet overland to the military ports. In addition, the Russian troops in the occupied areas of Cherson and Zaporizhia are supplied with supplies via the strategically important ice rink route.

Battle for Bachmut: Wagner boss asks for help

In the battle for the strategically important Ukrainian city of Bakhmut in the eastern region of Donetsk, Wagner's Russian private army called on the Defense Ministry in Moscow for help. Wagner boss Yevgeny Prigozhin yesterday published a letter to Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu asking for reinforcements. Prigozhin said that according to his information, the Ukrainian armed forces were planning a large-scale offensive in late March and early April. The aim is to cut off the Wagner troops from the Russian forces. Schoigu should urgently take the necessary steps to prevent this.

Otherwise, Prigozhin warned that there would be "negative consequences" for the Russian invasion of Ukraine. "Currently, the Wagner units control about 70 percent of Bachmut and continue their attacks until full liberation," he said. According to Prigozchin, the Wagner troops are the only Russian units fighting in Bakhmut. The Russian army is therefore active on other front sections in the Donetsk region.

In Ukraine, on the other hand, there is confidence that they will be able to defend Bakhmut. 70,000 people used to live there, and thousands are still staying there. For two months now, the armed forces have withstood the enemy's heaviest attacks, Deputy Defense Minister Hanna Maljar said in Kiev. Many would have believed that the defense would not last more than a week or two at the most.

What is important today

Russian President Vladimir Putin and China's head of state and party leader Xi Jinping continue their talks in Moscow. After yesterday's kick-off with a four-and-a-half-hour one-to-one meeting on the war in Ukraine, the main day of the three-day visit will focus on negotiations with government delegations. It is also about economic cooperation.

According to the Kremlin, the signing of two major agreements to expand an "all-encompassing partnership" and "strategic cooperation" is planned. Defense Minister Shoigu also attended the meeting. According to the Kremlin, questions of military-technical cooperation are also on the agenda. The West fears that China could supply weapons to neighboring Russia for the war of aggression against Ukraine.

China is considered a close ally of Russia. At the same time, Beijing has so far largely complied with the international sanctions against Moscow in order not to become the target of punitive measures itself.

According to media reports, Japan's Prime Minister Fumio Kishida is visiting Ukraine today. After completing a visit to India, Kishida is on his way to Ukraine, where he will meet Selenskyj, the Japanese broadcaster NHK World reported, citing government and ruling party officials.

It is expected that before the annual G7 summit of economically strong democracies in May, Kishida will want to assure the Ukrainian president of his country's support in the fight against Russia. Japan currently chairs the G7. The next summit will take place in the Japanese city of Hiroshima.