Russia - Ukraine war news summary | 22 March 2022
Russian invasion of Ukraine headlines
- Ukrainian authorities claims more than 2,300 children have been kidnapped by Russian forces in Donetsk and Luhansk
- Reports suggest the Russian military has just three days' worth of supplies left
- President Biden will set off for his European tour later this week, visiting Poland on the Ukrainian border
- White House says that Russia could be planning a cyber attack on US critical infrastructure.
- Authorities in Mariupol rejectthe Russian order of surrender
- Military experts believe that Russia and Ukraine will enter a stalemate which could lead to more aerial strikes on the part of the Russians.
- In speech to Israeli Knesset, President Zelensky urges lawmakers to take a stronger stand against Russia’s actions
- Russia reportedly bombs Mariupol art school sheltering 400 civilians and confirms the use of hypersonic missiles
Russia - Ukraine conflict information
- Putin and many others who support the war in Ukraine have made accusations that the country is full of Nazis. Where do these accusations stem from?
- Can families in the US sponsor Ukrainian refugees?
- Internet access has dropped by 15% in Ukraine. How has Starlink helped?
- What are the key dates for Russia to pay its state bonds?
Russians likely reorganising before renewed northern offensive - UK intellgence update
Russian forces are probably reorganising before a renewed offensive in the north of Ukraine, the UK’s Ministry of Defence said in its latest intelligence update on Wednesday.
“The battlefield across northern Ukraine remains largely static with Russian forces likely conducting a period of reorganisation before resuming large-scale offensive operations,” the update says.
“Russian forces are attempting to envelop Ukrainian forces in the east of the country as they advance from the direction of Kharkiv in the north and Mariupol in the south.
“Russian forces are still attempting to circumvent Mykolaiv as they look to drive west towards Odesa.”
The latest on the Russian invasion of Ukraine
This map shared by the United Kingdom's Ministry of Defence shows the areas in which Russia is focusing its invasion of Ukraine. Areas in southern Ukraine with coastline on the Black Sea were particular targets during the early days on the attack, with Russia using its annexed territory in Crimea to launch offensives. In recent weeks the focus appears to have shifted to Kyiv, which will be crucial is President Putin is to secure Russian control of Ukraine and allow him to install a puppet regime in power.
Kremlin spokesperson claims Russian military operation is on track
In an interview with CNN, Russian government spokesperson Dmitry Peskov has claimed that the military offensive in Ukraine is going according to President Putin's plans, despite Russia's failure to capture the capital city of Kyiv after four weeks of fighting. The vast Russian military was predicted to secure a swift victory over neighbours Ukraine but having failed to gain air supremacy over the nation Russia has suffered considerable losses in recent weeks.
Last week Russian news outlets claimed that their military had taken out a Canadian sniper who had travelled to fight for Ukraine. The reports suggested that he was one of the best shots in the world and the news was hailed as a rare military victory for the Russians as the invasion of Ukraine continues to stall. However the sniped known only as 'Wali', has made quite clear that he is very much alive.
“There’s two things I know for sure: that there’s a Russian invasion of Ukraine and that people think I’m dead", he told Alex Boyd of Canadian newspaper The Record on Tuesday.
Russian losses continue to mount in Ukraine
Many had expected Russian forces to secure a fairly swift victory in Ukraine with a vast numerical advantage but the Ukrainian military and civilian efforts have been resolute. Despite being vastly outnumbered Ukraine's defensive forces have managed to repel the invaders and succeeded in inflicting significant losses. Over the weekend President Putin staged a public event in Moscow to build support for the war in his own country, suggesting that the Russian people are becoming concerned with the slow progress of the 'military operation'.
More sanctions on Russia expected during Biden's European trip this week
US President Joe Biden will visit Brussels on Thursday.
"He will have the opportunity to co-ordinate on the next phase of military assistance to Ukraine," Jake Sullivan, the US national security adviser, told reporters.
Biden, he added, "will join our partners in imposing further sanctions on Russia and tightening the existing sanctions to crack down on evasion and to ensure robust enforcement".
Putin's fiercest critic Alexei Navalny given nine more years of prision
Alexei Navalny has been sentenced to nine more years of prison on charges of fraud and contempt of court. He was already serving two and a half years for parole violation when he failed to report in while he undergoing medical treatment in Germany after being poisoned, he says under orders from Russian President Vladimir Putin.
As one of the Kremlin's most outspoken and effective critics, Navalny and his party have been banned from politics by the Russian authorities.
Putin's war in Ukraine is not going to plan
The Russian army has gotten bogged down in their advances around Ukraine as they meet fierce resistance from the defending forces. The Ukrainians are managing to push back on the invaders in the south and reports are coming in that a Russian force northwest of Kyiv has been surrounded.
Earlier this month, the Kremlin had imposed a ban on the two social media platforms for restricting access to Russian media. Now a Russian court has further restricted operations of Facebook and Instagram under the country's "extremism" law. Russian users that still use either site will not be held accountable under the new ruling according to TASS, a Russian state-owned media outlet.
Possible criminal liability for spreading information on Ukrainian Armed Forces
Those who spread information on the whereabouts of Ukrainian troops and the movement of equipment on social media could face jail under proposed legislation.
Ukraine cannot be conquered city by city, street by street, house by house.
The only outcome to all this is more suffering, more destruction, and more horror as far as the eye can see
President Zelenskyy willing to give up future NATO membership to end war
President Zelenskyy again called for a ceasefire with the invading Russian forces and that Putin withdraw his troops from Ukraine so that the two leaders can have peace talks. One of the terms he is willing to accept is a guarantee that Ukraine will not seek NATO membership.
However, should negotiations fail Zelenskyy says "it will definately mean that it's not by accident." If Putin imposes conditions that Ukraine cannot accept, it would be a trap according to the Ukrainian head of state.
Ukraine accuses Russia of abducting children in occupied east
The Ukrainian Foreign Ministry says that Russia forces have illegaly transferred to Russian territory 2,389 children from the occupied Donetsk and Luhansk regions in the east.
Russia media unabashed by destruction in Mariupol
Russian forces have laid seige to Mariupol for weeks. The grinding battle for the city has leveled much of the infrastructure in the port city in southeast Ukraine, once home to 430,000 people.
Russians level Kyiv shopping mall killing eight
Perhaps that largest attack yet by Russian forces in the city of Kyiv came on Monday when a recently built shopping mall was laid waste. Ukrainian forces had been using the site as a base since it is near the embattled neighborhood of Irpin where Russian forces are trying to enter the capital city.
Phosphorus muntions not banned but shouldn't be used on civilians
White phosphorus is considered an incendiary weapon and Protocol III of the Convention on the Prohibition of Use of Certain Conventional Weapons prohibits using such weapons against military targets located among civilians.
Incendiary weapons are defined as, “any weapon or munition which is primarily designed to set fire to objects or to cause burn injury to persons through the action of flame, heat or combination thereof, produced by a chemical reaction of a substance delivered on the target.”
White phosporus begins to burn when it comes into contact with oxygen, and because of legal uses is not banned as a chemical weapon under international law.
Mariupol puts spotlight on Russia's brutal tactics in Ukraine
Mariupol was a city of 430,000 people before the Russian invasion but has since lost nealy a fifth of its population as residents that can flee the Russian seige and bombardment. Ukrainian authorities are accusing the invading forces of "filtering" the remaining residents depending on which side they support "disappearing" those that are loyal to Ukraine.
Russian forces making "limited progress" - UK intelligence update
In its latest intelligence update on the war in Ukraine, the UK’s Ministry of Defence says Russian forces continue to make “limited progress”.
“Despite heavy fighting, Ukrainian forces continue to repulse Russian attempts to occupy the southern city of Mariupol,” the update says.
“Russian forces elsewhere in Ukraine have endured yet another day of limited progress with most forces largely stalled in place."
It added: “Several Ukrainian cities continue to suffer heavy Russian air and artillery bombardment with the UN reporting that more than 10 million Ukrainians are now internally displaced as a result of Russia’s invasion."
From Ukrainian bunker to center stage
Despite the horrendous images of destruction as Russians bombard Ukrainian cities without pause images of hope still emerge. One such was seven-year-old Amelia Anisovych was filmed singing the Frozen classic 'Let It Go' in a Kyiv bomb shelter as Russia attacked Ukraine, which has been seen by millions. She took center stage at a charity concert in Lodz, Poland to sing the Ukrainian national anthem.
President Zelenskyy mourns holocaust survivor killed by Russian bombing
As Russia's invasion stalls on all fronts in the face of stiff resistance from Ukrainians defending their country, the Kremlin has resorted to more draconian tactics to break the will of those fighting against the invasion.
Ukrainian holocaust survivor killed in Russian attack
A Ukrainian man who survived the Nazi Holocaust during World War Two has been killed during a Russian attack on the eastern city of Kharkiv. Boris Romantschenko, 96, died during Russian shelling of his apartment block on Friday.
"We mourn the loss of a close friend. We wish his son and granddaughter, who brought us the sad news, a lot of strength in these difficult times," The Buchenwald and Mittelbau-Dora Memorials Foundation, of which Romantschenko was vice-president, said in a statement.
President Biden speaks to EU leaders prior to trip across the Atlantic
President Joseph R. Biden, Jr. spoke today with President Emmanuel Macron of France, Chancellor Olaf Scholz of Germany, Prime Minister Mario Draghi of Italy, and Prime Minister Boris Johnson of the United Kingdom. The leaders discussed their serious concerns about Russia’s brutal tactics in Ukraine, including its attacks on civilians. They underscored their continued support for Ukraine, including by providing security assistance to the brave Ukrainians who are defending their country from Russian aggression, and humanitarian assistance to the millions of Ukrainians who have fled the violence. The leaders also reviewed recent diplomatic efforts in support of Ukraine’s effort to reach a ceasefire.
Meeting with NATO members will take place in Europe this week. President Biden will be traveling to Brussels to attend and then make a stop in Poland. This comes as a stalemate between Russian and Ukrainian forces is being predicted by NATO military intelligence specialists.
Read our full coverage for more on the trip and any potential plans to travel to Ukraine or Russia.
Since the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Internet Society Pulse, an online group that tracks global internet usage has seen a fifteen percent decrease in usage across the country. Russian cyber attacks as well as those on physical infrastructure have severely limited the ability of Ukrainians to access the internet.
Elon Musk has stepped in and provided Starlink terminals to Ukraine to help people connect. Read our full coverage for more on how Starlink works and what Elon Musk has said about the invasion.
Hello, and welcome to AS USA coverage of the events unfolding in Ukraine 22 March as it struggles to fend off Russian's assault.
Four weeks after Russian forces first launched a full-scale invasion, the Ukrainian people continue to mount a fierce defence of their homeland. The Kremlin issued a deadline on Monday for the beseiged city of Mariupol to surrender, but Ukraine flatly refused.