Ukraine War: Russia Strikes Most Settlements in Single Day, Says Kyiv

UKRAINE/RUSSIA: Ihor Klymenko, the interior minister of Ukraine, claims that Russia attacked 118 towns and villages in Ukraine in a single day, more than it has done any other day this year.

He said that attacks had occurred in ten of Ukraine’s twenty-seven regions, resulting in both fatalities and injuries.

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Many of the affected towns were in close proximity to the eastern and southern front lines.

Avdiivka, a strategically important town in the eastern Donetsk area, has been the target of much of Russia’s military weaponry for weeks.

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“[Avdiivka] is being erased, shattered. There have been more than 40 massive shelling attacks against the territorial community in the past day,” local leader Vitaliy Barabash said.

He stated that two civilians had died and issued a warning that Russia was preparing for a third round of its attack. Russia, according to Ukraine, has been sending reinforcements into the region in an attempt to surround and take the town.

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The general staff of Ukraine’s armed forces reported on Tuesday that twenty strikes in the Avdiivka region alone were repulsed.

Additionally, Russia has increased its attacks on the town of Kupyansk in the northeastern district of Kharkiv, aiming to prevent Ukrainian forces from regaining control of the area surrounding Bakhmut.

Away from the front lines, there were additional strikes in Kremenchuk, when a Russian drone set fire to an abandoned oil refinery, and in Nikopol, a city in southern Ukraine, on a block of apartments, stores, and a pharmacy.

The refinery, located in the Poltava district in the centre, has been the subject of multiple attacks by Russia, according to officials, who added that attacks continued until the early hours of Wednesday.

The Kremenchuk refinery, which was Ukraine’s largest until Russian attacks crippled it a few weeks into the full-scale invasion, remains inoperable.

Ukraine’s counter-offensive has struggled to make significant advances in reclaiming territories occupied by Russian forces in the south and east. This has raised concerns about potential Western fatigue with the ongoing conflict.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has openly acknowledged the slow progress and consistently called on Kyiv’s allies to urgently supply more advanced weaponry while emphasising the importance of unity.

Ukraine’s chief military commander, Zaluzhny, cautioned on Wednesday that the war has transitioned into a “positional” or static phase.

He said that Moscow will gain from this by “allowing it to rebuild its military power” in an Economist column.

Zaluzhny cautioned that Russia still possessed “superiority in weapons, equipment, missiles, and ammunition” despite suffering significant casualties, and he urged Ukraine’s partners to provide jets, drones, contemporary electronic warfare, and mine-breaching technologies, among other things.

Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni, who has been close to the Ukrainian leader, brought up the subject of tiredness in response to a phone call spoof from two Russian pranksters who are well-known for going after opponents of the Kremlin.

She is overheard telling Vovan and Lexus, “I see there is a lot of fatigue, if I have to say the truth, from all sides. We’re near the moment in which everybody understands that we need a way out.”

She noted that Ukraine’s counter-offensive might not have yielded the expected results, though it continued without fundamentally altering the conflict’s outcome.

The administration of US President Joe Biden has requested a $106 billion package for Israel and Ukraine from Congress. “I can guarantee that without our support [Russia’s Vladimir] Putin will be successful,” US Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin issued a warning this week.

In a nighttime speech on Tuesday, President Volodymyr Zelensky informed the Ukrainian people that “we live in a world that gets used to success too quickly”. 

“The more protection there is in the world, the more protection we have along our coastline and in our sea,” he said, saving special commendation for the military’s accomplishment in undermining Russia’s influence over the Black Sea. 

Ukraine recently attacked the Russian Black Sea fleet’s headquarters, forcing the majority of the fleet’s ships to leave occupied Crimea.

Ukrainian officials stated that warplanes had dropped “explosive objects” on the anticipated routes of civilian ships, despite the fact that at least 700,000 metric tonnes of grain had escaped Russian shelling in recent months.

“However, the navigational corridor continues to function under the auspices of the defence forces,” the southern operational command of Ukraine stated.

In February 2022, Russian President Vladimir Putin initiated a full-scale invasion of Ukraine.

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