LIVE – War in Ukraine: Zelensky in Mykolaiv in a rare outing from Kyiv – Liberation

War between Ukraine and Russiadossier
On this 115th day of conflict, the Ukrainian president visited the port city in the south of the country, located very close to the front line. The Russians continue their relentless offensive on the Donbass.

In summary :

– President Volodymyr Zelensky welcomed Friday’s support from Brussels for Ukraine’s EU candidate status, a “positive news” for his country. He went this Saturday to Mykolaiv, in the south of the country.

– Moscow is gradually cutting its gas deliveries to Europe. France has not received any since Friday and supplies have decreased to Germany and Italy.

– Two key cities for the control of Donbass, Severodonetsk and Lyssytchansk suffer the brunt of the fighting. In the latter, a missile strike Friday on the “Maison de la Culture”, where residents of the city were refugees, killed four people.


Volodymyr Zelensky in Mykolaiv for a rare visit out of Kyiv. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky paid this Saturday, for the first time since the beginning of the Russian invasion, a visit to the town of Mykolaiv in southern Ukraine. A very rare trip outside the capital Kyiv since the start of the conflict. A video, released by the Ukrainian presidency, shows him inspecting a badly damaged residential building and holding meetings with local officials. Mykolaiv, a port and industrial city, is still under Ukrainian control, but it is close to the Kherson region, occupied by the Russians. It remains a target of Moscow as it lies on the route to Odessa, Ukraine’s largest port.


German authorities are investigating numerous potential war crimes. “So far we have received hundreds of clues” in this sense, said this Saturday the president of the German Federal Criminal Police Office (BKA), Holger Münch. Their investigation does not only focus on the perpetrators of war crimes in Ukraine but also on the military and political leaders of these crimes. “This is the hardest part of our investigation, a complex puzzle job”says the manager. “Our clear objective is to identify those responsible for atrocities, to prove their actions through our investigations and to bring them to justice” including in Germany, which applies universal justice allowing certain crimes to be judged there, regardless of where in the world they were committed. But “it may take time” because the investigations related to the war in Ukraine are only at their “very beginning”recognizes Holger Münch.


Sievierodonetsk under stifling pressure from Russian troops. “Now, the fiercest battles are fought near Sievierodonetsk. The Russians don’t fully control the city.”said this Saturday on Telegram the governor of the eastern region of Lugansk, Serguii Gaïdaï. “In the neighboring villages, the fighting is very difficult – in Toshkivska, Zolote. They try to break through but fail,” he declares. Serguii Gaïdaï also mentions “further destruction” at the Azot chemical plant in Sieverodonetsk, where hundreds of civilians have taken refuge. The governor also points out that Lyssychansk – a city under Ukrainian control separated from Sievierodonetsk by a river – is “heavily bombarded”. “They can’t get near it and that’s why they just shoot the city with airstrikes,” he said. The situation is “very dangerous in the city”.

11:05 a.m.

In Kyiv, a crowd at the funeral of a Maidan figure killed in action. Hundreds of people flocked to St. Michael’s Golden-Domed Monastery in central Kyiv on Saturday to attend the funeral of a young Ukrainian militant killed in action in the east. Roman Ratouchny, who would have turned 25 in July, was a figure in the pro-European Maidan movement. He died on June 9 near Izium, in the Kharkiv region, where Ukrainian forces have been fighting the Russian army since their invasion on February 24. In a column published by the Washington Postthe Ukrainian journalist Nataliya Gumenyuk was moved by this disappearance: “His loss confirms something everyone suspected: this war is consuming the best of our people.”


A Ukrainian doctor imprisoned by the Russian army freed after three months of captivity. A Ukrainian doctor has been freed by Russian troops after three months in captivity. Yuliia Paievska, known as Taira, was arrested on March 16 after secretly recording and giving journalists images of the hospital where war wounded, including Ukrainian and Russian soldiers, were being treated, according to the Associated Press. “It’s such a great feeling of relief. My words may sound ordinary but I don’t even know what to say.”said her husband.


The Russians consolidate their hold on Serpents’ Island. By deploying several defense systems, the Russian army managed to strengthen its hold on Serpents’ Island in the Black Sea. This suggests that it does not intend to easily let go of this strategic point despite the threats posed by the new artillery systems and the firing of Ukrainian missiles.


US soldiers missing in Ukraine on Russian TV. A Russian public television channel broadcast videos on social networks this Friday evening of two Americans who had gone to fight as volunteers with the Ukrainian forces and had been missing for several days. US President Joe Biden had told the press a little earlier that he did not know where the two men were, Alexander Drueke and Andy Huynh, two former American soldiers whose relatives had not heard from them since last week. “Americans should not go to Ukraine”, he added. The US State Department also reported information about the disappearance “in recent weeks” of a third US citizen. The Russian army also claimed that just under 7,000 “foreign mercenaries”from 64 countries, had arrived in Ukraine since the beginning of the conflict and that nearly 2,000 of them were reportedly killed.


The Ukrainian president welcomes the support of Brussels. After the European Commission’s recommendation on Friday to grant Ukraine EU candidate status, Volodymyr Zelensky says this Friday evening “wait for a positive result” at the European summit which will decide on the subject next Thursday and Friday. “This is the first step on the road to EU membership”according to him. L’Ukraine “deserves this positive news”estimated the Ukrainian president in his video intervention of the evening, welcoming a “historic success of all those who work for our State”. “Our rapprochement with the European Union is not only positive for us. This is the biggest contribution to the future of Europe for many years.”he added.

Source: Libération by

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