Senate GOP delegation meets with Zelensky in Ukraine
Russia has probably lost a third of its ground forces since the war in Ukraine, the defense ministry said in its intelligence update on Sunday.
It added that the Kremlin’s offensive in Ukraine’s Donbas region “has lost momentum and is significantly behind schedule”.
“Under the current circumstances, it is unlikely that Russia will drastically accelerate its advance over the next 30 days,” the update said, which attributes the failures to a critical loss of equipment and intelligence, as well as continued low morale and diminished combat effectiveness.
British intelligence predicted that as a result of these problems, Russia is unlikely to drastically accelerate its advance over the next 30 days.
It comes as President Zelensky declared that Russian troops are withdrawing from Kharkiv, the country’s second-largest city, after bombing it for weeks. The Ukrainian army said Russian forces are now withdrawing from the northeastern city to focus on guarding supply routes
Germany says it is ready for swift ratification of Finnish, Swedish NATO membership
Germany has made all preparations for a swift ratification process should Finland and Sweden decide to apply for NATO membership, Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock said Sunday, underlining the need for security guarantees from both countries.
“Germany has prepared everything to do a rapid ratification process,” she told reporters on a second day of talks with her NATO counterparts in Berlin, adding that ministers agreed at a dinner on Saturday that there should be no gray zone. between the time they apply and the time they apply.
“If they decide to join, they can join quickly… We have to make sure we give them security guarantees, there shouldn’t be a transition period, a gray zone, where their status is unclear,” she said.
She referred to the ratification period that could take up to a year, during which the Scandinavian countries are not yet protected by NATO Article 5, which guarantees that an attack on one ally is an attack on all.
Thomas KingsleyMay 15, 2022 08:40
Italian police prevent attacks by pro-Russian hackers during the Eurovision Song Contest
Italian police foiled hacker attacks by pro-Russian groups during the semi-final and Saturday final of the Eurovision Song Contest in Turin on May 10.
During voting operations and appearances by participants, the police said it had mitigated several cyber attacks on the network infrastructure by the hacker group “Killnet” and its subsidiary “Legion”.
On May 11, “Killnet” claimed an attack on the websites of several Italian institutions, including the Senate, the Italian Parliament and the National Health Institute (ISS), the ANSA news agency reported.
Thomas KingsleyMay 15, 2022 08:20
‘Things are still not safe’: Locals fear returning to battered villages of Kharkiv despite Russia’s withdrawal
Denis Kozmenko decided to flee his home with his young family after he saw a young mother, who had fled a school during air raids, was dragged away to be raped by a Russian soldier.
He was one of several Ukrainian men who decided to move their wives and daughters from the village of Mala Rohan, which was under Russian occupation, after the gruesome assault of the 27-year-old woman.
“I saw what happened that night. This poor woman was taken away by this soldier in front of her family, dozens of people. I realized then that there was no security, no security at all,” said Kozmenko, who returned to the village after it was recaptured by Ukrainian troops.
More on this from our defense and security editor in Ukraine, Kim Sengupta:
Thomas KingsleyMay 15, 2022 08:05
Russian village bordering Ukraine shelling in which one person is injured, local official claims
One person was injured when troops in Ukraine fired on a Russian village close to the border, Vyacheslav Gladkov, the governor of the Belgorod region, claimed in a message on the Telegram messaging app early Sunday.
The governor of the Belgorod region Vyacheslav Gladkov made the claim to Telegram.
“The village of Sereda, Shebekinsky city district, was sacked from the territory of Ukraine,” he wrote.
“The civilian was injured, sustained shrapnel. He will receive all necessary medical care.”
Thomas KingsleyMay 15, 2022 07:47
Exclusive: Ukrainian refugees allowed to stay in B&Bs indefinitely under new laws quietly passed by the government
Ukrainian and Afghan refugees in the UK could be housed indefinitely in B&Bs under new laws quietly passed by the government, sparking accusations of a “two-tier system” of housing support.
An amendment to homelessness laws on Wednesday says the six-week limit homeless families can spend in B&B accommodation will no longer apply to refugees fleeing Ukraine and Afghanistan.
The amendments also allow municipalities to place these groups outside the area — potentially hundreds of miles away — without taking into account the usual factors such as the disruption of employment and education and access to medical facilities or other support.
Our social affairs correspondent, May Bulmanhas the full story below:
Thomas KingsleyMay 15, 2022 07:32
Britain says Russia’s Donbas offensive ‘has lost momentum’
Russia’s offensive in Ukraine’s Donbas region “has lost momentum and is significantly behind schedule,” British military intelligence said early Sunday.
“Under the current circumstances, it is unlikely that Russia will drastically accelerate its advance over the next 30 days,” the British military said in a regular Twitter bulletin.
On Friday, Ukrainian troops prevented an attempt to cross the Russian River in the Donbas, an eastern area that includes the Luhansk and Donetsk regions that was the center of the war.
Thomas KingsleyMay 15, 2022 07:14
Russian missile hits military infrastructure in Lviv
The military structure in Lviv in western Ukraine was attacked by a Russian missile strike early Sunday, officials said.
The attack was confirmed by the governor of Lviv, Maxim Kozitsky.
He added that there is no information about the dead or injured in the attack.
“The extent of the destruction is being clarified,” the governor said.
Arpan RaiMay 15, 2022 06:51
Locals fear returning to battered Kharkov villages despite Russian retreat
Even after Russian troops have been forced out of Kharkov, families who have left villages in the main Ukrainian city are finding it difficult to return amid threats of rape and death.
Like Denis Kozmenko who had to leave within hours with his young family after witnessing a young mother being dragged away to be raped by a Russian soldier. She was hiding in a school when air raids ravaged the region.
Kozmenko realized that the worst could come for his family. So he decided to move his wife and daughter out of the village.
the independentDefense and Security Editor Kim Sengupta has the full report here:
Arpan RaiMay 15, 2022 06:51
A Ukrainian photographer’s struggle against Russian propaganda
For photographers like Alina Smutko, the difficult choice of fleeing or staying behind homeland Ukraine was not the scenario they had envisioned. But when it came to making a decision, it wasn’t that hard.
She decided she had to stay behind and fight with what she had.
Alina is now documenting the crisis, herself in grave danger, but she hopes photographing the war will tell the world what is happening in Ukraine and said she wants her work to “say against Russian propaganda”.
Her world was different before Russia sent its troops on the night of February 24. Previously, her work focused on politics, sports and social justice. Her work has taken her to many areas of Ukraine, including the disputed Russian-occupied areas of Crimea, Luhansk and Donetsk.
Now, in the shoes of a war photographer, she spends her days recording stories of innocent people affected by bombing, refugees fleeing and charities trying to provide aid.
Read the full story here:
Arpan RaiMay 15, 2022 06:09
Song Contest: Ukrainian band Kalush Orchestra wins Eurovision Song Contest
Ukrainian band Kaulsh Orchestra won the Eurovision Song Championship on Sunday for their song “Stefania” in a popular vote for the country teetering under the Russian-led invasion.
In their speech, the band members urged millions of audiences to help the battle-stricken regions of the country.
“Help Azovstal, right now,? The band’s frontman, Oleg Psiuk, said while begging people to free hundreds of Ukrainian fighters trapped in the steel mill.
He also thanked the Ukrainian diaspora and “and everyone around the world who voted for Ukraine. … The victory is very important for Ukraine. Especially this year.”
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky praised the band’s victory, saying the country “we will do our best” to host the match in battle-stricken Mariupol next year.
“Ukrainian Mariupol,” he said, adding: “free, peaceful, rebuilt!”
“I am sure that our victorious chord in the battle with the enemy is not far off,” said Mr. Zelenskyy.
Arpan RaiMay 15, 2022 05:37